General Discussion Gear Reviews & Questions » Shimano 105 vs. Ultegra Rss Feed  
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2009-11-16 7:37 PM

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Subject: Shimano 105 vs. Ultegra
I'm thinking of picking up a road bike in the near future and was wondering the real differences between the 105 and the ultegra groupset. Currently I have Ultegra on my P2 and haven't had any problems with it so far. Is there a huge performance difference when going to the 105? or is it simply going to be a weight difference? Along the same lines will the Ultegra last considerably longer (x2) than the 105 before parts need replacing?

Seeing as how I already have the P2 for tri racing I want a road bike for organized longer rides. I don't want to spend extra for a fancy carbon road frame, but I figure the components are a good thing to spend a bit more on. Specifically if I'll end up saving a bit of money based on reliability and longevity.

Edited by F1longhorn 2009-11-16 7:38 PM


2009-11-17 12:35 AM
in reply to: #2516762

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Subject: RE: Shimano 105 vs. Ultegra
Very minor differences between the two sets... the bearings inside the shifters is slightly different and the rear derailleur is slightly different, but except for that, it's mostly cosmetic differences...

Here's what I would upgrade, rear derailleur (just think how often you shift...) and then shifters. I won't change front derailleur as this makes no difference... same think with brakes. Crankset makes no difference, but I would consider getting the Dura-Ace bottom bracket bearing cups (not very expensive, and those bearings are really high quality). Chain, stick with 105, same thing with cassette (plus, in my experience the 105 last at least as long as the Ultegra and both of them, longer then the Dura-Ace cassette).

Longevity of the two will be the same.

My advise would be to spend the money on a good frame (that FITS!) with 105 components... best value all around
2009-11-17 8:32 AM
in reply to: #2516762

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Subject: RE: Shimano 105 vs. Ultegra
I notice very little difference, if any, between the two...esp. with the new 10 speed stuff. (That includes weight, performance, and durability)
2009-11-17 6:03 PM
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Subject: RE: Shimano 105 vs. Ultegra
I've used the Ultegra (and before that, 600 components for years).
I recently purchased a road bike with 105 components and I must say that I'm impressed.

I don't keep-up with all the differences between the product lines anymore, but when I was racing (road and mountain) one of the primary differences between the lines was the number of gears you could go through in one swipe of the lever. This can be important in racing as you may need to respond quickly to attacks, sprints, etc. I notice this limitation with 105, but it's just not a real issue in Tri or regular road riding.

105 is good stuff.

Edited by TaylorB 2009-11-17 6:04 PM
2009-11-18 12:03 AM
in reply to: #2516762

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Subject: RE: Shimano 105 vs. Ultegra
Thanks for the responses, I had a feeling based on the technology improvements that the 105 stuff would be plenty for my skill level. I don't plan on doing any hardcore road racing with attacks and sprints just didn't want to get something that would be outdated or wear out prematurely.
2010-01-19 9:31 PM
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Subject: RE: Shimano 105 vs. Ultegra
I've used Dura Ace, Ultegra, and 105 pretty extensively. I'd say that there's little noticeable difference to me between DA and Ultegra, but a noticeable difference between Ultegra and 105. Don't get me wrong, 105 is good stuff, but Ultegra is much better IMHO. The 105 stuff seemed to need adjustment more frequently and not be as crisp on the shift. For a crankset, there shouldn't be a great deal of difference to the average person other than weight; Dura Ace is stiffer, lighter, and more crisp, but it's not going to be a deal breaker to the average person. Brakes, zero difference other than weight and pricetag (from my experience). Durability of Ultegra over 105 is an advantage, too. Bottom line, though, is that none of the gruppos are going to make the difference in a race, but the engine will make it!


2010-01-20 9:21 PM
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Subject: RE: Shimano 105 vs. Ultegra
Yup. Shimano stuff now is excellent across the board.

My road bike is 2200/Sora. Shifts flawlessly, and I have no problems riding with competitive roadies on their hammerfests. Lots of good reports about longevity as well - the notion that 2200/Sora "wears out" much faster is unlikely to be true - there are racers on forums who have been using it for years with no problem.

105 is plenty good for anything a triathlete would ever need. Unfortunately, most hot tribikes don't come with 105 (like Cervelo), only ultegra or DA. For the cachet! 
2010-01-23 5:42 PM
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Subject: RE: Shimano 105 vs. Ultegra
I'm not an expert but in my opinion the only important differece is the price. Shimano 105 is much cheaper but the quality is very similar to Ultegra.
2010-01-25 12:07 PM
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Subject: RE: Shimano 105 vs. Ultegra
In my experience, I noticed a difference going from 105 to Ultegra. Ultegra for me was much quieter, smoother and easier to shift. Doesn't make me ride any faster, but makes the riding more enjoyable.
2010-01-26 1:05 PM
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Subject: RE: Shimano 105 vs. Ultegra
I hope I'm not to late for you, but I just picked up an older Cannondale Caad 8 that has 105s on it, and I also own a P2. From what I've experienced so far, the difference is minimal. The Ultegras seem to be able to shift a little faster under a decent load but other than that I can't tell a huge difference. I think the test will be how long they last....
2010-01-26 2:04 PM
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Subject: RE: Shimano 105 vs. Ultegra
This reminds me of a commercial that was on TV a few decades ago. some lady washes her clothes using the "Leading Brand" of detergent and then using the featured, and more economically priced brand. She compares the results and says:

"I can't see a difference... ahhhh, the price is the difference"

... nuff said...



 


2010-11-30 10:33 AM
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Subject: RE: Shimano 105 vs. Ultegra
Hi All,

I am bringing this thread back up to ask again if people see differences between the 105 and Ultegra?  Seems so far that there is a noticed difference, but that any benefit might not justify the added cost for the Ultegra.

I am looking at getting a new road bike, this is my first road bike (a hybrid has gotten me through 2 sprint tri's and hundreds of training miles) and I want to get a bike that will last years and years (for road riding and triathlons, mostly Olympic distance with a Half Iron or Sprint in there from time to time)

The Felt AR4 looks great.  The AR5 is very similar but has 105s instead of Ultegra and is ~$2300-$2500 as opposed to the $3,300 I can get a AR4 for.  Thoughts?  

Thanks in advance!  
2010-11-30 12:25 PM
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Subject: RE: Shimano 105 vs. Ultegra
Still not much difference!

There will always be some, enough for Shimano to justify the cost and to have an option to help bike manuf' diferentiate their models.

Campagnolo goes one step further, when a new Record (D A equiv) set comes out, the outgoing record becomes the Chorus (Ultegra equiv) set for the new year.

Shimano does like to keep some diferences and doesn't down badge older group sets.
2010-11-30 12:36 PM
in reply to: #3230585

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Subject: RE: Shimano 105 vs. Ultegra
alex jb - 2010-11-30 12:25 PM

Still not much difference!

There will always be some, enough for Shimano to justify the cost and to have an option to help bike manuf' diferentiate their models.

Campagnolo goes one step further, when a new Record (D A equiv) set comes out, the outgoing record becomes the Chorus (Ultegra equiv) set for the new year.

Shimano does like to keep some diferences and doesn't down badge older group sets.


shimano totally down badges just like campy. It takes them a while though. Take a look at the XTR groupset from a few years ago when they came out with hallowtech, and then look at today's SLX groupset. They've done the same on the road bikes over a longer period of time. Reguardless, once you get to 105 the biggest difference is weight. The rest isn't worth nit picking for details.
2010-11-30 12:40 PM
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Subject: RE: Shimano 105 vs. Ultegra
once you get to 105 the biggest difference is weight. The rest isn't worth nit picking for details.
 

So in terms of long term durability (5+ years), there's not a lot of difference?  Thats the opinion that I am getting after reading more and more.  Weight is nice of course, but I'm 6 ft, 200 lbs, so spending loot to save a pound (or less) doesn't make a whole lot of sense.  A year ago I was riding on 210 lbs, it'd be easier for me to push it down to 190 than spend some $$$$  
2010-11-30 12:49 PM
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Subject: RE: Shimano 105 vs. Ultegra
metfan630 - 2010-11-30 12:40 PM

once you get to 105 the biggest difference is weight. The rest isn't worth nit picking for details.
 

So in terms of long term durability (5+ years), there's not a lot of difference?  Thats the opinion that I am getting after reading more and more.  Weight is nice of course, but I'm 6 ft, 200 lbs, so spending loot to save a pound (or less) doesn't make a whole lot of sense.  A year ago I was riding on 210 lbs, it'd be easier for me to push it down to 190 than spend some $$$$  



IMO that is a correct assumption.


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General Discussion Gear Reviews & Questions » Shimano 105 vs. Ultegra Rss Feed