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QUICK! Centaur or Chorus?(18 posts)

QUICK! Centaur or Chorus?blownpupil
Jan 11, 2003 6:50 PM
Buying new Colnago...SHould I get it with Centaur or Chorus. Other than price, any "real" differences?
Chorus rocks.JS
Jan 11, 2003 6:59 PM
I'm a Shimano guy and I like Chorus. If it wasn't for the compatability issues during races I'd run it. It's every bit as good as Record but without the pointless carbon bits. If your spending a bit of money on the frame get Chorus, it's worth the extra bucks.
Difficult choicebsdc
Jan 11, 2003 8:13 PM
I started a thread with that very question. What I got from it was that Chorus is a little lighter and has a nicer finish, but that, functionally, they were about the same. People who had riden both said they could hardly tell them apart. Some points that came up: Chorus/Record cranks and BB's are not compatible with Centaur cranks and BB's. Centaur shifters use bushings while Chorus shifters use ball barings.

I'm building a relatively cheap, training, get back into shape, comfortable bike that will probably be a winter/rain bike some day. I'll probably go with Centaur.

If I were building a nice bike, like a Colnago, for fast club rides or racing I'd look harder at Chorus.
Jan 11, 2003 8:27 PM
I'll go with centaur if the money is tight. If you can afford it get chorus. They're both fine groups
If you can afford a Colnago, then go with.....REPO42
Jan 12, 2003 1:25 AM
CHORUS................... good luck
Jan 12, 2003 5:16 AM
It comes down to what you can afford. If the Chorus is not a financial hardship then go with it. You are already paying the premium for a Colnago, right? However, Centaur works great and may well be the best value in the Campy lineup. As I understand it main differences are crank/BB design, ball bearing vs bushings in levers, and finish.
advantages of Chorus...C-40
Jan 12, 2003 5:40 AM
Chorus has better ergo levers with ball bearing pivots, just like Record.

The chorus crank uses the same 102mm speindle length as record, while centaur uses a cheap bottom bracket with a 111mm spindle length that's not compatible with the higher level groups.

Chorus is functionally equal to record, but without the Ti and carbon bits for reduced weight. It's the best value, IMO.
I've got all three . . .Look381i
Jan 12, 2003 6:12 AM
Record, Chorus and Centaur (all 10v) on three different bikes. The Centaur is the newest (on my XC bike). Functionally and esthetically (while on the bike), I'll have to admit that were it not for the differences in the rest of the bike, I don't really notice a difference. I sometimes think that my Record shifts are crisper or my crank is stiffer, but I am probably imagining it.

One difference that you may care about: The Centaur rear der. will handle the 13-29 cassette. Although there may be exceptions for some frames, in Chorus you'd have to change to a medium cage if you want to run dessert plates. In fact, if you decide on Chorus and think you will need to use a 13-29 in the future, just go with the med. cage now. That's what I did with my Record group. It shifts just fine with both a 13-29 and a 12-25. I haven't tried anything else.

What would I do? If money is not real tight, I'd follow Aristotle: the golden mean is Chorus -- Record function, less weight than Centaur.

Good luck.
re: QUICK! Centaur or Chorus?toomanybikes
Jan 12, 2003 7:52 AM
I happened to be in Cramerotti's store the other day ( it was my LBS when I lived in Vancouver) and was asking him about upgrading an older bike of mine. Has about 1987 C-Record on it.

He told me that the Centaur is better functionally and in terms of engineering than the late 80's C-Record which I have always found pretty darn good, so Chorus is just going to be better than that.

Kind of steered me in terms of a new bike when that happens, I'm 43 and any bikes I buy now are for fun, I'm not going racing again so I'll go for the Centaur and I expect will be pretty happy to have done so.

Don't know if that helps, I just thought the comparison to a previous Gold Standard was interesting.
I have centaurBill is in Denver
Jan 12, 2003 8:05 AM
And I couldn't imagine a finer shifting system. I'm a pleasure rider though, not a racer...meaning my rides range in the 20mile length and average about 16-18 depending on my mood, winds, how much a drank the night before etc etc. :-)

Either group, you're going to love it.

If you can afford it, go Chorusrwbadley
Jan 12, 2003 9:21 AM
To my eye, the Chorus has much nicer appearance. The chorus will have higher resale if it comes to that. Even tho' both groups work very well, I really like the Chorus rear brake being a single pivot caliper. It doesn't look so clunky, and we don't need the extra power on the rear wheel brake anyway. The crank has a cleaner appearance also and is able to use the better Record/Chorus BB.

Sounds like a nice bike, go with the Chorus.
If you can afford it, go Chorusbarnaby
Jan 12, 2003 12:54 PM
Just an aside: not entirely convinced that the Campy single pivot rear brake is really that great an idea. Personally I miss the extra stopping power when I swap between bikes (only have it on one bike). I know that the intention is to avoid rear wheel lock-ups, however I not sure how often people are locking up the rear wheel on their road bike, and my own experience is that it's usually operator error in not reading the road conditions, stopping distance, etc properly. Oh yeah, it can be a pain to adjust. Wolud be interested in other people's opinion of this Camy 'innovation'.
Reference Chorus vs Centaur, just wish to echo the sentiments of other posts: Centaur is the best value group and loses nothing in terms of functionality to Chorus and really only lacks (relatively) in the appearance/finish department. Frankly, if appearance and finish is so important then you'd be selling the family into slavery to fund the purchase of Record (its the levers).
If you can afford it, go ChorusASiegel993
Jan 12, 2003 7:46 PM
First: I have Chorus and it simply rocks. There are absoulutely no flaws with it. I love everything about it and if you can afford it, then absolutely go with Chorus. You won't find a nicer shifting groupset (unless you prefer sti levers) and it looks great, is about as light as you'll ever need, and cheaper than D-A. Unless I'm counting grams for a climbing bike (which I'm not and won't for about 10 years), if I were to have a really nice bike, Chorus would be my choice, no question. Chorus is the way to go if you can afford it.

About the brakes... I'm coming from cantilever brakes on my touring bike, and don't really find the single-pivots lacking in power. You ask how many people actually lock up their rear wheel... well, yesterday on a group ride, there was a crash right at the end. My buddy and I were the last two in the paceline so to speak (wasn't really a tight paceline). I managed to avoid the crash. My friend locked up his rear wheel, skidded and got caught up in someone's wheel... or body. There are probably a few factors for why he crashed... first, he was ahead of me and had less time to react. second, he probably tried to go around the wrong way (between crash and curb). Regardless, he still locked up his brakes and lost most of his control. He rides D-A... People aren't gonna lock up their brakes on a regular basis, but in a panic situation where you have to react in a split-instant, it's very easy to lock up brakes (I heard about 3 of them lock up in that particular crash). For me, I'd be fine either way with the pivots. You give me dual-pivot... great. You give me single-pivot... great. That issue wouldn't push me away from chorus nor would it pull me towards it.
If you can afford it, go Chorusrwbadley
Jan 12, 2003 9:55 PM
RE: Brake lock-up. My experience is we tend to become a little more ham-fisted when confronted with an emergency stop. This could lead to rear lock-up and loss of control. Lock-up of the front is a little more unusual, it does happen on sand or loose gravel but on good surface with dry pavement in a straight line its a bit more difficult. If you lock up the front, it is very likely you will go down.

I ride motorbikes, and because I am used to braking right hand for front wheel, all my bikes are set up that way because I don't want to 'think' about it in a panic stop.

I set up the rear brake on my dual pivot (D-A) bike with a huge amount of toe-in to weaken the brake a bit, as it was just too sensitive for me. The Chorus single pivot I had no trouble with and really like both the power and modulation. When faced with an emergency stop on either bike the brakes behave quite the same, and that allows me to not think about it so I can concentrate on other things.

I find if the rear brake is set up so I can apply a 'set amount' of power without lock-up, I am then able to focus fully on modulating the front for best effect. Since 75% of our stopping power comes from the front brake, it makes sense to use it to full advantage.

I think whatever works for you is great. If you ride several bikes, it is an advantage for braking character to be similar so there are no surprises.

I still vote for Chorus! 8-)

re: QUICK! Centaur or Chorus?gtx
Jan 12, 2003 1:01 PM
I'd get the Chorus crank and bb. Otherwise, no big deal.
re: QUICK! Centaur or Chorus?Breakfast
Jan 12, 2003 9:46 PM
Yep, that's the only upgrade needed for Centaur; the better bottom bracket and crankset from the Chorus group.
re: QUICK! Centaur or Chorus?mickey-mac
Jan 12, 2003 10:35 PM
I don't know the current price difference between Chorus and Centaur, but I've run Chorus on my two most recent bikes. I have absolutely no complaints about Chorus and wouldn't hesitate to buy it again. However, I've never spent any time on Daytona/Centaur and have no basis for making a good comparison. If the cost of upgrading Centaur bottom brackents and other parts will get you near the Chorus price range, go Chorus.
Cost / Benefit analysis that worked for 2 bikesCalgaryDave
Jan 13, 2003 8:26 AM

Lucky you to have this decision to make.
As a reference point, I'm a CNC machinist who, when making this kind of decision, gets way too wound up in gram-counting, dollar saving, and net research. Hey, wait a minute, don't we all do that?
My girlfriend and I built up two Cervelo Prodigy's last spring with Campy and we are very happy with the result. We stayed with Centaur for cost savings but sprung for the Chorus shifters. The longevity of bearings over bushings easily justifies the additional expense. A Chorus headset keeps the Campy line intact as they don't offer a Centaur headset.
Doing this should allow you to go for some flashy hoops if that's your thing. I was sweating over every little detail re: wheels and, in the end, went with Centaur/Open Pro/DT/Axial Pro. The shop guys and most people on RBR suggested going with this set-up and for good reason. Proven technology beats flash hands down any day.
Bottom line.... enjoy the ride!

Have fun,