B'Twin, Cannondale, Specialized, or Norco?

B'Twin, Cannondale, Specialized, or Norco?


  • Total voters
    29

aismaiil

Well-Known Member
Hi all, newbie here, need your help choose my first serious bike.

First of all, I haven't been 'frequently' on a bike for around 7 years, but I'm looking into getting a bike for a possibly a short commute from my house to the Reading station (though for some reason I was told it's not safe to park it there even underground!) and mostly for exercising on weekends. My budget is around £600. I went to the local Decathlon, and I honestly loved the Triban 500. The other bikes I'm interested in are namely:

Specialized Allez Sport C2 2014:
www.evanscycles.com/products/specialized/allez-sport-c2-2014-road-bike-ec052507
Specialized Secteur Sport X3 2014:
www.evanscycles.com/products/specialized/secteur-sport-x3-2014-road-bike-ec053049
Cannondale Synapse 6 Tiagra 2014:
www.evanscycles.com/products/cannondale/synapse-6-tiagra-2014-road-bike-ec054417
Norco Valence A3:
www.evanscycles.com/products/norco/valence-a3-2015-road-bike-ec072596

I was also thinking of the Cannondale CAAD8 7 Sora 2014 and CAAD8 6 Tiagra 2014, but I understood they have a more racy geometry, and I'm looking for something a bit more comfortable.

As this is basically my entry level road bike, I would like it to last me quite some time without needing upgrades until I really get into cycling. Would anyone kindly explain to me what is the advantage of one spec over the other in terms of frame, gearing, and shimano brakes, and which one you would recommend I choose? B'Twin seem to have a great circle of fans and riders, but whenever I asked outside the B'Twin circle almost everyone chose Cannondale, although I would prefer the Specialised's upright frame over the Cannondale's.

I didn't find any Specialized with Tiagra in my budget. But is the Tiagra really worth the diff in price between the Secteur or Allez and the Synapse? If so, why don't I just get the B'Twin Alur 700 with 105 gearing for cheaper (£599 currently at Decathlon, discounted to make way for the newer model)?!

Any suggestion is much appreciated. Thanks
smiley.png


Update: Somebody on the Triban forum told me to wait for the Triban 540:
www.decathlon.co.uk/triban-540-road-bike-black-id_8331275.html
 
Last edited:

Oldbloke

Guru
Location
Mayenne, France
I'm a big Specialized fan but for that budget I'd go for the CAAD8, great bike and probably more comfortable than the Allez.

Best of luck, especially with parking it at that station!
 
OP
aismaiil

aismaiil

Well-Known Member
I'm a big Specialized fan but for that budget I'd go for the CAAD8, great bike and probably more comfortable than the Allez.

Best of luck, especially with parking it at that station!
I have a feeling the next owner is probably waiting for it at the station already after reading my posts!! lol A dozen people told me not to park it there so far, so I think I'll listen to reason and leave it at home, use it for exercising on weekends instead... So the CAAD 8 is more comfortable than the Allez even with the Allez's more upright frame?! Thanks.
 

vickster

Legendary Member
Comfort varies from person to person. Go to decathlon (around the shop) and Evans (outside, need photo id and bank card to swipe) and ride them.

I'd go for the synapse assuming it's not black. Specialized bore me with their ubiquity and looks
 
OP
aismaiil

aismaiil

Well-Known Member
Comfort varies from person to person. Go to decathlon (around the shop) and Evans (outside, need photo id and bank card to swipe) and ride them.

I'd go for the synapse assuming it's not black. Specialized bore me with their ubiquity and looks
The Synapse is white, blue, and black... I tried the Triban 500 at Decathlon, however the saddle was really uncomfortable so I can't really tell!
http://www.evanscycles.com/products/cannondale/synapse-6-tiagra-2014-road-bike-ec054417
 

Joshua Plumtree

Approaching perfection from a distance.
Not sure of the actual geometries of the allez and the caad8, but I'd be very surprised if the head tube lengths vary greatly. The caad8 is supposedly a more relaxed ride than its racier cousin, the caad10.
 

outlash

also available in orange
There's not a bad in your list there, my own preference would be a CAAD8 as I've got one, done well over 5,000 miles and it still rides superbly. FWIW I did own a Triban but couldn't get on with it. Each to their own as they say.

Tony.
 
OP
aismaiil

aismaiil

Well-Known Member
There's not a bad in your list there, my own preference would be a CAAD8 as I've got one, done well over 5,000 miles and it still rides superbly. FWIW I did own a Triban but couldn't get on with it. Each to their own as they say.

Tony.
The salesman at Evans told me to go with the Synapse as it's more relaxed than the aggressive CAAD8 or the Secteur over the Allez since it's my first road bike and I'm mainly using it for casual/comfortable weekend riding and exercising... I kinda like the Synapse but prefer the Specialized's curved frame!
 

vickster

Legendary Member
Go test ride, Evans are very good for that, you can take as long as you want, take time off in the week when the shops are less busy
 

SteCenturion

I am your Father
Allez is aluminium equivalent to Specialized Tarmac (racier) Secteur is equivalent to the Spesh Roubaix (more all day/sportive friendly).

However all bikes (to a degree) can be set up comfortably (if it fits you correctly in the 1st place).
 

outlash

also available in orange
The salesman at Evans told me to go with the Synapse as it's more relaxed than the aggressive CAAD8 or the Secteur over the Allez since it's my first road bike and I'm mainly using it for casual/comfortable weekend riding and exercising... I kinda like the Synapse but prefer the Specialized's curved frame!
He's right in that the Synapse is the most 'heads up' of Cannondale's road bikes but I don't find my CAAD8 particularly racy. Try them, you may find the Specialized fits you like a glove which makes all this redundant :smile:.
 

Joshua Plumtree

Approaching perfection from a distance.
Agree with the above. Don't think you'll find a whole heap of difference between the geometries of the bikes, until someone tells you that X is more aggresive than Y.

Try them.
 

Sittingduck

Legendary Member
Location
Somewhere flat
Go and test ride them - only way to be sure. I quite like the Allez C2, which is surprising because I don't normally favour Spesh.

Being a Cannondale owner I would say that they are superb but it really depends on what you want out of the bike. You will 'just know' when you ride the right one.
 
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