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Many ebay and other online vendors advertise the long-reach Shimano BR-650 brakes as being "Ultegra" series.

However, looking at them they don't seem like they are top-of the line or really all that different in manufacture from 105-line Shimano brakes.

The brakes themselves don't seem to say Ultegra on them anywhere but I haven't seen a box for them. Anyone know why they are listed as Ultegra?

Edit: and if they aren't, what series are they? Deores? Altimas? OEMs?

ebay listing

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I installed one of these yesterday! I'm not impressed... they're very spongy :( Definitely not as good as the 105s they replace, but at least I can align the pads properly. –  Mac Jul 6 at 21:26
    
I was thinking of up grading from my OEM brakes as well which is why I was looking at them. Guess I'll look at real Ultegras and brake pad extenders. –  RoboKaren Jul 6 at 22:23
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Actually, I rode on them today and they had plenty of stopping power, even in the wet. So maybe I was a little harsh earlier. I've also tried a set of Miche brake calipers and they had reach in between the standard and long reach Shimano brakes. They were pretty good. –  Mac Jul 7 at 2:05

3 Answers 3

No, these brakes have nothing to do with Ultegra.

A lot of unscrupulous Ebay sellers put unrelated keywords into the title to get more search hits. It's against Ebay rules, but it's pretty widespread, unfortunately.

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Actually I think you will find they are Ultegra, circa something like 2009. Since the technology trickles down you will find that they look like modern 105's.

Take a look at the CRC product listings for examples of both the modern Ultegra and the old BR-650.

http://www.chainreactioncycles.com/brakes?f=2259

Note: the 2009 is a guess based on comments/reviews found online about that model.

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As Batman has correctly stated below these are non-series Shimano brakes. They are not Ultegra, which has been 6000 series since the 70s. The brakes are simply residual technology and are reliable and cheap. Non-series components are often used for OEM. –  DWGKNZ Jul 10 at 6:02

According to Shimano's website, they are non-series components. However, some websites such as this one claim they are Ultegra quality (This wouldn't surprise me with Colin's answer). In any case, none of the Shimano long reach calipers are part of a series anymore.

That being said, TRP (e.g. RG957) among others still make high quality long reach calipers if you're willing to pay for them.

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