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About to buy my first road bike. I keep things for a long time, so won't be upgrading the frame in 2 years. I will ride 2-3 time weekly, 15-40 miles each time. I'm deciding among three options:

Cheapest: Diamondback Century 2 for $800. http://www.diamondback.com/bikes-pavement-road-endurance-road-century-2. To be purchased online.

Mid-range: Trek 1.5 2013 for $1000. www.trekbikes.com/us/en/bikes/2013/archive/trek/2013_1_5_h2_compact/ Ridden and comfy but not real zippy.

Higher end (for me): Cannondale Synapse Tiagra or 105 5 ~1200-1400. Comes with a professional fit.

The Diamondback is tempting, given the 105 components and the price, but it's got some no-name hubs and non-105 brakes. Is that worrisome? Any other thoughts on these options?

closed as off-topic by mattnz, Batman, andy256, Gary.Ray Mar 30 '15 at 13:13

This question appears to be off-topic. The users who voted to close gave this specific reason:

  • "Questions seeking product, service, or learning material recommendations are off-topic because they tend to become obsolete quickly. Instead, describe your situation and the specific problem you're trying to solve." – mattnz, Batman, andy256, Gary.Ray
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  • I'd be hesitant about purchasing my first bike (or any bike) online. Fit is quite important and hard to determine from just looking at numbers. – Kibbee Mar 29 '15 at 1:34
  • Part of what you pay is for branding and the shop and stuff. Basically, if you put a lot of money into some parts, you'll end up having less to spend on other things (such as the low spoke count wheels and stuff on the diamondback). I agree with kibbee - also voting to close as product rec. For what its worth in this case, I'd lean more towards the Trek or Cannondale due to cuts on wheels. – Batman Mar 29 '15 at 2:28
  • The question title asks a reasonable question, but the body goes off-topic into product recommendation territory. If you edit the question you may avoid it being closed. As it is, I am also voting to close. – andy256 Mar 29 '15 at 11:54
  • $800? You should be able to find bikes with Claris or Sora components starting around $350 at bikesdirect.com or performancebike.com. – b.cycler Mar 29 '15 at 18:06
  • Product recommendation questions are generally a poor fit for a Q&A site since the answers quickly become out of date. There are a number of previous posts that will help you know what to look for when buying a new/first road bike, commuter bike and mountain bike. – Gary.Ray Mar 30 '15 at 13:13
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My first real road bike was around $1300 - so you are on the right track as far as spending. You do have to pony up to get a decent ride and components.

I bought a Bianchi, and the dealer is an hour away. I haven't had any issues, but now that I look back I should have bought a bike where I live, so I have dealer support and can get parts/merchandise easily.

Are any of the brands you mentioned local to you?

If I were to pick I'd go with the Trek for your first one. My bike has Tiagra and its been fine. I actually will probably upgrade to 105 when stuff starts wearing out. Having Tiagra gives me something to look forward to.

  • Thanks. Confirming my suspicion that I should just bite the bullet and not order online. Both the trek and cannondale are at local shops. I also rode a Specialized Allez sport that's nearby. My main concern with the Trek is that it didn't feel as a responsive as others I've tried, and the brakes were noticeably weak. – ecologist1234 Mar 29 '15 at 4:08
  • I wouldn't completely discount the Claris groupset until you've tried it. They carry a 2-year warranty just like other Shimano components, so durability isn't an issue. The Allez looks like a good value, so does the Giant Defy:giant-bicycles.com/en-us/bikes/model/defy.5/18733/76111 – b.cycler Mar 29 '15 at 18:05

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