There's not much more personal than saddle preference. One man (or in this case woman's) sumptuous throne is another's misery inducing razor blade. As a company, Specialized do take some of the risk out of the saddle-buying process, if you avail yourself of a little sit on one of their 'arse-o-meters' which under the eye of a well-trained shop assistant gives a fairly accurate measurement of the width of your sit bones, which, contrary to popular belief, do not bear a great deal of resemblance to the more obvious width of your tail end. A generous behind does not necessarily entail broad sit bones, and vice versa.
So, assuming that you normally try and buy the right width of saddle for your sit bones anyway, the BG Jett Comp Gel comes in two widths, 143mm and 155mm. Specialized are one of the few companies that offer female specific narrower width saddles. I've always thought it a rather bizarre assumption by saddle makers that all women riders like saddles that look like armchairs, even on a sleek pared down road machine. Still, 143mm is an approximate width available from a scant handful of other manufacturers, such as SDG, Fizik, Bontrager and Selle Italia but they are in the minority, and to the best of my knowledge only Specialized do a female specific road saddle as narrow as the Ruby Expert at 130mm (Bontrager do one at 134mm). But, I digress.
I have tried a wide (some literally) variety of saddles over the years, including a good few Specialized perches, and have found that, on the whole, Specialized's offerings do suit me well for both size and comfort, so I was reasonably well predisposed towards the Jett Comp.
The Jett Comp Gel isn't all that light for a saddle of this girth, with many other equivalent options available cutting a good 50g or so off the overall weight for around the same amount of money as the Jett. So, it's heavier and it's no cheaper than the competition, but you are getting a long pedigree of Specialized's commitment to women's saddle technology, starting in earnest long before the majority of the other market leaders.
The saddle features the easy to recognize, medically tested BG pressure relieving cutout down the centre, a carbon-reinforced shell is tuned specifically to maximize a woman's long term riding efficiency, gel and P.U foam provide that all important cushioning and hollow chromoly rails attach it to your bike.
In use I found it a little on the firm side, and whilst it did give great support for the sit bones and good levels of comfort there, it proved a little unforgiving at the nose, especially in the aero position. On long rides, it was fine provided the ride position was reasonably upright for at least a good chunk of the time- short spells on the drops weren't too bad as long as they were limited. The matt finish of the saddle cover was comfortable and not too slippery under lycra, yet provided plenty of opportunity to shift around if necessary. Being as firm as it was, there was certainly no problem with power being lost to the cushioning.
A well engineered, medically proven female specific saddle offering good support to the sit bones, but a little over firm at the nose for me. A touch on the heavy side too.
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Make and model: Specialized Jett Comp Gel Women's saddle
Size tested: Black - 143mm
Tell us what the product is for, and who it's aimed at. What do the manufacturers say about it? How does that compare to your own feelings about it?
Aimed at female road riders.
Good width options but I found it a bit firm in the nose for riding on the drops for long periods.
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
Weight 298g (size 143mm)
Women's BG cut-out
Carbon reinforced shell with women's specific tuning
Gel and PU foam padding
Hollow chromoly rails
Water resistant Micromatrix cover.
Available in 143mm and 155mm
Nicely finished and well made
Good levels of comfort under the sit bones, let down by over firm nose area.
Firm cushioning meant little loss of power.
Solid and should last a long time.
Well above average sit-bone comfort and support but less comfortable towards the front of the saddle.
Pretty much on a par with equivalent female specific saddles, although many of those are lighter.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
Performed well on the whole, but better suited to a more upright position than aero, which is not ideal in a road orientated saddle.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
Width options, sit bone comfort.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
Unyielding nose, over firm padding, weight
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes, mostly.
Would you consider buying the product? Probably shop around, so maybe not.
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Maybe.
Anything further to say about the product in conclusion?
Some may find this spot-on for comfort and performance, but personally I loved the rear of the saddle and disliked the front section. It's a little on the weighty side too.
Age: 37 Height: 1.65m Weight: 67kg
I usually ride: My best bike is:
I've been riding for: 10-20 years I ride: Most days I would class myself as: Experienced
I regularly do the following types of riding: commuting, touring, general fitness riding, mtb,
Lara has been riding bikes for longer than she'd care to admit, and writing about them nearly as long. Since 2009 she has been working as part of the road.cc review team whilst championing women's cycling on the side, most notably via two years as editor of the, sadly now defunct, UK's first and only women's cycling mag, erm, Women's Cycling.
Believing fervently that cycling will save the world, she wishes that more people would just ride a bike and be pleasant to each other.
She will ride anything with two wheels, occasionally likes to go fast, definitely likes to go far and is always up for a bit of exploring somewhere new and exciting.