DA C50 vs RS80 C50

Questions about purchasing bicycles and parts

DA C50 vs RS80 C50

Postby JessicaAlba » Thu Jul 18, 2013 10:34 pm

Price wise, chalk and cheese, I know. Also, I am aware that the RS use Ultegra hubs and weigh an extra ~120g...

Keen to hear from both camps on these though, and especially from anyone with experience riding both. I'm not planning to race, but would love some extra top end (and hopefully smoothness) across the flats.

Merlin have the RS at around $750 and I've been watching these for many months. Bike Exchange have the DAs at $1600-odd. I am on something of a budget, so don't want to go much higher than that (Zipps are WAY out!), so what really is the difference? Are the DAs really a thousand dollars better??

Tia.
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by BNA » Fri Jul 19, 2013 1:19 am

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Re: DA C50 vs RS80 C50

Postby Duck! » Fri Jul 19, 2013 1:19 am

Ultegra hubs, while very nice, are quite a big step below Dura-Ace. A large part of the price difference will be contributed by the titanium freewheel body on the D-A.

The much quicker ratchet engagement of the D-A makes itself really apparent if you're on & off the power a lot, and doing a lot of gear shifting; it really takes both the lag and shock load as the ratchets unload & reload in each sift, which you do notice on longer rides.
I had a thought, but it got run over as it crossed my mind.
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Re: DA C50 vs RS80 C50

Postby sdnelson19 » Fri Jul 19, 2013 10:29 am

talk to Greg Ryan at twe. I spent $1600 on set of 50mm cc's and couldn't be happier. Check these forums for other people's opinions (apart from me praising him) and give him a call. You really won't be disappointed.
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Re: DA C50 vs RS80 C50

Postby Xplora » Fri Jul 19, 2013 10:33 am

I'm not sure how you can compare the two, when you are talking about twice the price, and it's ALL in the hubs. Identical rims. (unless it's the updated 11spd, which might be slightly different). Either way, you'll get a much better ride from the DA50s. No question.

Now. Is this conceivably worth the cost? That's the 750 dollar question. Half of me says "Hells yeah dood" and wants to pony up the 50-60mm carbon tubs at 1250gms, hang the price tag; that's a 750 gram saving, which would put my bike on the UCI limit with lowly Ultegra parts. AKA Fully Sweet.

But. That investment will actually double the value of my bike. It's a WHOLE OTHER QUALITY BIKE. That 2000-2500 bucks could be used for 11 speed upgrades, supplements, steak/seafood dinners, massages/chiro, adding to my bank balance so I don't have my wife threaten divorce for another allegedly useless purchase (LOL). For the sake of 750gms.

I think the key is aero benefits, and how long you intend on keeping the bike or wheels. I've seen three blokes out of the 75 riders I know that have dumped their "aero" wheels ala Zipp or Shimano 50s to just use alu rims. I reckon that I only know 5 of those 75 that even had the aero wheels in the first place, so the odds are quite poor to bother.

Will it stop me getting a quote on Bonty Aura 5s? Nope. Or a quote on Aeolus D3 3/5 combo? Nope. One of the most glorious things I've seen lately is a few pics of dudes with F/R 88mm china carbon rims (gosh they look awesome, even if they are ridiculous). Image is everything. I'd be the biggest poser at the coffee shop if I won lotto... you can't buy taste, but you can buy everything else :lol:

In summary, ask yourself if you can afford to spend 750 bucks on wheels - and can you afford to NOT spend 1500. There is your answer. I personally reckon that 2000 is a lot of cash to spend, but if you're getting great wheels and great support for them, why not... it's not like you'll be getting new ones soon after ;)
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Re: DA C50 vs RS80 C50

Postby JessicaAlba » Fri Jul 19, 2013 11:20 am

Great answers all, thanks.

It is true, there really is no comparison, on paper, for these two wheelsets, I just wanted some advice on how much better the DAs really are. And you are right X, they would add massive resale value to my bike if/when the time came (except I'd probably keep the wheels/saddle/knog lights etc for the next bike if it came to that, lol).

Thanks nelson for the heads up re the twe wheels. Checked out his site and they look good. Gotta love homegrown products too. It'd be nice if his site was a bit more clearly ordered, with some form of price list for reference.

Since I am on RS C24s now, part of me thinks, how bad could the C50 hubs be, since these roll pretty sweetly already and I am guessing they will be the same/similar hub? Then the other part says, make the investment, sight unseen and test unridden, there would be a lot less chance of disappointment in the DAs, meaning money not wasted or spent twice.
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Re: DA C50 vs RS80 C50

Postby Bakks » Fri Jul 19, 2013 12:06 pm

I've got RS80 C50's. I like the wheels, the only downside is they are a bit heavy when climbing (they are about 200 gram more than the DA variety). If I was going to spend DA prices I'd probably look at TWE wheels as suggested above or second hand ENVE's or Zipp.
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Re: DA C50 vs RS80 C50

Postby Xplora » Fri Jul 19, 2013 12:43 pm

TWE hasn't got prices because Greg custom builds wheels. You decide how much you want to spend. 1500 is a ball park for carbon deep dish wheels. I'd love it if he had more info on his brake tracks and toroidal profile, but call the bloke and make up your own mind. My only hesitation with Greg is that lack of info (which I haven't asked him about! So my fault really). He sources the rims from the USA, so they could be ENVE, ZIPP, Reynolds, Easton, who knows... the molds are worth a lot of cash, there can't be that many players.

Anyways, I figure once you are spending 1000 bucks on a part that already comes with your bike, you might as well spend another 500 or 1000 because you really need the GOOD STUFF to justify spending more. That's probably the reason why I'd end up on D3 Aeolus. That's the LBS option, and they are a strong Zipp competitor - and warranty wouldn't be an issue. So what if I could get used wheels for less? Wheels are a serious issue for safety for the kind of riding I like to do - spokes going, tubes blowing, rims failing, will probably kill me or someone else and that's worth a lot more than 1000 bucks, true?

OP, you're already on reasonable wheels - I don't think going RS80 C50 is going to change your world. Better to just do the DA (or competitor wheels) and enjoy what you got.
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Re: DA C50 vs RS80 C50

Postby Duck! » Fri Jul 19, 2013 8:02 pm

Xplora wrote:I'm not sure how you can compare the two, when you are talking about twice the price, and it's ALL in the hubs. Identical rims. (unless it's the updated 11spd, which might be slightly different). Either way, you'll get a much better ride from the DA50s. No question.

Ooh yes, you raise a point I had overlooked - the rims. RS80 C50 rims are the same as the previous-generation 7900 Dura-Ace; the new 9000 are completely different wheels. That said, along with the rest of the Ultegra group, the RS80 wheels are also being updated (logically called RS81), and will get the new rims, so as per the previous generation, the only difference will be the hubs.
I had a thought, but it got run over as it crossed my mind.
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Re: DA C50 vs RS80 C50

Postby g-boaf » Sun Jul 21, 2013 10:03 pm

The DA C50 will be good wheels.

Once you are spending big dollars on wheels, you may as well just go all out and get the best wheels you can afford.

I'm probably one of those types Xplora mentioned who has gone back to alloy wheels. The alloys are easier to live with. In most cases I'm not going at high enough speed to get the benefit of those wheels.
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Re: DA C50 vs RS80 C50

Postby Xplora » Mon Jul 22, 2013 8:32 am

Just a little experience I had yesterday coming down Wark Hill Road; I knew we were going to go fast down there, but I've never had a situation that didn't result in hospitalisation where it was IMPOSSIBLE to slow down within 20m and I needed to. That's a fair whack. I reckon we must have been doing 60 down the hill, (just checked Strava, it might have been 68!!!!) and I honestly struggled to brake fast enough for the intersection 120m away. (OK I've checked the data, and I'm horrified it took 100m of frantic downhill braking to get back to a stop). Bit hair raising - but a good thing, because I needed the reality check for a huge 4km descent at 50-60 most of the way straight after.

There is a lot to be said for alloy wheels; for a daily driver I will be going alloy with a carbon fairing because I couldn't ever work out what all the whinging about carbon clincher failure was before yesterday, when I genuinely felt the bike was close to the limit. Clearly I don't get out enough ;) Maybe not totally on topic, but food for thought.
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Re: DA C50 vs RS80 C50

Postby JessicaAlba » Mon Jul 22, 2013 10:34 pm

Xplora wrote:Just a little experience I had yesterday coming down Wark Hill Road; I knew we were going to go fast down there, but I've never had a situation that didn't result in hospitalisation where it was IMPOSSIBLE to slow down within 20m and I needed to. That's a fair whack. I reckon we must have been doing 60 down the hill, (just checked Strava, it might have been 68!!!!) and I honestly struggled to brake fast enough for the intersection 120m away. (OK I've checked the data, and I'm horrified it took 100m of frantic downhill braking to get back to a stop). Bit hair raising - but a good thing, because I needed the reality check for a huge 4km descent at 50-60 most of the way straight after.

There is a lot to be said for alloy wheels; for a daily driver I will be going alloy with a carbon fairing because I couldn't ever work out what all the whinging about carbon clincher failure was before yesterday, when I genuinely felt the bike was close to the limit. Clearly I don't get out enough ;) Maybe not totally on topic, but food for thought.


This is the main reason for being happy to sacrifice a little weight for the confidence in knowing I will stop in a hurry when I might need to. There is anecdotal evidence for full carbon rims, but not enough...there are far more horror stories around. And living in FNQ, I ride in the rain a lot during summer...not the best conditions even with an alloy brake surface, let alone otherwise.

I missed a set of Mavic Carbone SLs on eBay today, by three seconds...the idea of a carbon fairing on alloy rims does not bother me, given the usage I intend for them. All things for a reason I guess. I have been corresponding with Greg at TWE this past few days as well. His offerings are right on the money...

And I thought choosing a toothbrush was hard!
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Re: DA C50 vs RS80 C50

Postby NhiTrac » Tue Jul 23, 2013 8:10 am

I called Greg at TWE a while ago when I was looking at carbon for daily commuting. He advised against it. In the end I ended up with Fulcrum Zeros and could not be happier... Until I put 25mm tyres on them a few days ago and OMGosh silky smooth buttery riding!

Ps nothing wrong with my conversations with Greg, I simply wanted a little bling and liked the looks of the Zeros over what Greg had to offer.
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Re: DA C50 vs RS80 C50

Postby nickl » Tue Jul 23, 2013 4:55 pm

I have RS80 C50s. They are good wheels, and I wouldn't pay double for 10 speed DA C50s.

BUT, it probably is worth paying a bit more for 11 speed compatibility. The DA 9000 C50s have that, but you'll need to go with RS81s instead of RS80s to get it at the lower price point. I've seen the RS81 C24 wheelset for sale, but not the RS81.

If I wanted to spend more, I'd go further and get Zipps or Enves.
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Re: DA C50 vs RS80 C50

Postby biker jk » Tue Jul 23, 2013 5:56 pm

Go for the RS81 C50s (11-speed) since you get the wider and more aero rim plus digital (click) cone adjustment.
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