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  1. #1
    Ruby
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    Synapse Alloy 5 vs. Carbon 6 (5)

    A little background. I have a bad back (multiple surgeries) and have gotten back into biking after many years off. Got back on my mountain back and hybrid which leave me pretty bent over but was advised that there has been a change in geometry to a bit more upright so I went to give a road bike a try.
    My LBS who sells primarily Cannondale, Specialized and Giant and who I have known for many years has recommended the Synapse & Roubaix although the Roubaix was not in stock in my size (54).
    I first took out the Carbon 5 and I road about 4 miles although it needed a little tweaking felt wonderful. Comfortable, smooth and fast. However I only had my H400 to compare it to as I have not ridden a road bike in 20 years.
    I then went out on a Alloy 5. Here I was a little disappointed. Maybe it was not set up enough or could the carbon vs alloy make that much of a difference?
    Now I'm thinking maybe I should go with the Carbon 6 so I get the frame and go down on components although I have always ridden with Shimano. The difference in price appears to be about $750 from alloy 5 to carbon 5 with carbon 6 in the middle.
    So my "confusion" is will the carbon frame be better for comfort (back) vs alloy or go alloy with better component group. My LBS loves carbon which is why he gave me that first.
    Looking for comments I guess on carbon vs alloy feel/comfort for those that have or ridden both. Right now leaning towards carbon 5.
    Thanks all.

  2. #2
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    Why not wait to try the Roubaix or Defy?

    I got a Secteur without testing others. Nice but wish I had something to compare it to. In particular, these three bikes.

  3. #3
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    I don't think there's a difference in geometry between alloy and carbon but I just got the Synapse Carbon 3 Ultregra and it's really true that carbon frames smooth out the small bumps in the road. It's very noticeable coming from an aluminum Secateur. I love my Synapse, it's such a comfortable ride.

  4. #4
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    Just got the SuperSix (carbon) 5. I could definitely tell the difference between it and the CAAD10 aluminum - much smoother (others don't seem to notice much difference). My thinking is that the carbon would be a little less jarring on your back. As for the components, the SuperSix 5 came w/ Shimano 105 and I think it is excellent. I don't know much about the SRAM Apex on the Synapse 6, but I expect it would be decent and if you don't want to pay the difference, you can always upgrade later.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by bobrico View Post
    I don't think there's a difference in geometry between alloy and carbon but I just got the Synapse Carbon 3 Ultregra and it's really true that carbon frames smooth out the small bumps in the road. It's very noticeable coming from an aluminum Secateur. I love my Synapse, it's such a comfortable ride.
    I'd love to get more detail in the differences. I have a Secteur and have just been getting the craving to go Carbon. Synapse, Defy, Roubaix and Madones among others on the list to test.

    What made you switch? Besides comfort anything else improve? Handling, climbing, acceleration? Endurance ability?

    Never rode carbon but the Secteur is pretty smooth for Alum. If that's the big difference I would probably just ride it out for a bit.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by NJBiker72 View Post
    I'd love to get more detail in the differences. I have a Secteur and have just been getting the craving to go Carbon. Synapse, Defy, Roubaix and Madones among others on the list to test.

    What made you switch? Besides comfort anything else improve? Handling, climbing, acceleration? Endurance ability?

    Never rode carbon but the Secteur is pretty smooth for Alum. If that's the big difference I would probably just ride it out for a bit.
    Well, I'm not sure I will be the best gauge for you as my Secteur was simply too small for me. It was my first road bike except for hybrids and the LBS put me on a 56cm (I'm 6'4"). I tried for well over a year to get comfortable on it but finally gave up and went to another LBS to look at flatbar bikes thinking I simply wasn't built for road bike geometry. They took one look at my bike and loaned me a 61cm Synapse for a few days to judge for myself and I knew all was right with the world!

    Outside of that, comparing the two, there is an absolutely noticeable difference in the geometry between them. It's not something gradual either. When you get on a synapse it instantly feels more comfortable. For 2 weeks while waiting for this bike to arrive, the LBS let me borrow a system six 3 with all the goodies. Nice bike but I felt every bump on that bike to the point that I found myself out of the saddle about 50 times just to avoid the jarring on my regular ride. The Synapse simply rolls over them with ease, no more worries.

    Also, and it may be contributed to my overall comfort on the bike, my Average MPH has jumped substantially on the regular ride. At 61cm, it weighs in at 17.81 pounds with Ultegra 6700 pedals. Maybe it's just my enthusiasm for a new bike but this thing flies for me

  7. #7
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    the synapse is a comfort road bike, i'd go carbon- apex

  8. #8
    M60
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    I've had my Synapse Carbon 5 for about three weeks now and I echo the other comments about the quickness, smooth ride and easy shifting of the 105. This is agreat bike and I've got 300 miles on it with no issues. My LBS had to tweak a few things to dial it in for me but that is to be expected. Would I buy again...absolutely!

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