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  1. #1
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2017

    Dura Ace 7900 vs Ultegra 6800

    Hi all, I'm currently building up a road bike and need to choose the groupset that'll go on it. I can get a used(less than 1,000 miles) Dura Ace 7900 Groupset for around $300 from a friend and a new Ultegra 6800 groupset for around $380, also from a friend. My wheels are only 10 speed compatible so if I buy the 7900, I would have to upgrade the wheels(which are pretty bad anyways). What are your thoughts on those two? I can't seem to find a decent comparison between the 6800 and the 7900 anywhere online!

  2. #2
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation: BCSaltchucker's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    7900 is 10sp and will work with the wheels

    6800 is 11 sp and you can likely get it to work with your wheels. I've done the 'grind the stops down on the freehub' trick and was easy.

    I'd go with 6800, I have it on two bikes and the shifting is great, plus more gears is better. Heck neutral service in the Tour de France has Ultegra on the bikes.

  3. #3
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Join Date
    May 2010
    I have extensive miles on both.

    I thought 6800 was better shifting until I started using 11 speed chains with 7900 and realized it was just the chain. They're pretty much the same except for one extra gear.

    Function wise it really won't matter. At this stage I'd probably go 6800 because if you crash out a right 7900 shifter you probably won't find a replacement.

  4. #4
    Road Warrior
    Reputation: n2deep's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    If you go with the 6800 it will allow you to upgrade to 11 speed at a later date!!

  5. #5
    Forever a Student
    Reputation: MMsRepBike's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2014

    Replacement parts are widely available and cheaper.

    What cassette do you run?

    The new r8000 Ultegra has an 11-34 cassette that fits 10 speed wheels.

    Might just need a new freehub body for the wheels to be 11 speed.
    use a torque wrench

  6. #6
    Off the back
    Reputation: fast ferd's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    If that $380 covers the complete 6800 groupset, that represents a screaming deal. Makes it a no-brainer, in my opinion.
    I run bikes with both, and the 6800 shifts better and is quieter.
    Although maybe I try Strongbow's suggestion about running a 9000 chain. Never knew that.
    That's a great price on the 7900. But, again, it depends if it covers the complete group.

  7. #7
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    I vote go 6800. I've also used both and found the 7900 rear derailleur a PITA to get setup and this was on a TT bike with simple routing directly behind the shifter with no sharp bends like a STI 7900 shifter. Never knew about running a 9000 chain instead but it is a moot point for me as I upgrade that bike to 9000 with a SRAM 11 speed chain and it works much better (easier to setup and the rear shifting is crisp and responsive unlike the 7900 rear).

    Easier to get replacement parts and if you gotta get a new wheelset anyways any new set will be 11 speed compatible.

  8. #8
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    I'd go with the 6800 in a heart beat. nothing to do with 10 speed, but if I could find a good working set, 7800 would be what I'd want. Cables hidden under the bar tape are not that big a deal.

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