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Shimano Ultegra R8000: more news and updates

We got some more info about the new Shimano Ultegra 8000 groupset at a presentation yesterday, some good and some not so much...

We were pleasantly surprised to be able to sit in in a presentation for the new Shimano Ultegra R8000 groupset yesterday, presented by Shimano Europe development managers during a trade event for cycling distributor i-ride. 

Read more: Shimano launches new Ultegra R8000 groupset

We featured an in-depth guide to what you can expect from Ultegra R8000 earlier this month (see the link above), and at this presentation we picked up on some fresh murmurings that we didn't catch in our first scoop on the new group...

The R8000 caliper brakes can take up to 28mm tyres plus mudguards

Shimano Ultegra R8000 dual pivot brake

The caliper version of Ultegra R8000 will take up to 28mm tyres plus mudgards, which will be welcome news for those who like to spec beefier tyres and some protection for winter or poor-weather riding. Shimano do say that any wider and you should use the disc version of the groupset, though. 

All bikes with R8000 will have synchronised shifting compatibility: but you'll be able to update your Ultegra 6800 Di2 groupset to synchronised shifting by just buying the battery

If you don't want to splash out for the entire new groupset but still want the convenience of synchronised shifting, you can buy Shimano's BT-BN110 battery separate and in conjunction with Shimano's E-TUBE app, set up customised synchronised shifting on your current groupset. Synchro shifting allows you to pre-select the next chainset/ cassette combination the chain will move to when you press the button to upshift or downshift, even if that means moving both derailleurs.

The new cranks won't work with the old front derailleur, but the new front derailleur will work with old cranks

Argon Ultegra R8000.png

If you just wanted to upgrade the crankset on your Ultegra 6800 groupset... you won't be able to do so without replacing the front mech too, which will cost you at least another £50. Vice versa though, the new front mech is compatible with Ultegra 6800 cranks.  

We attended this presentation during an industry event for i-ride distribution, who will be speccing a selection of their Orro 2018 bikes with the new Ultegra R8000 groupset. Check out orrobikes.com for more info.

Arriving at road.cc in 2017 via 220 Triathlon Magazine, Jack dipped his toe in most jobs on the site and over at eBikeTips before being named the new editor of road.cc in 2020, much to his surprise. His cycling life began during his students days, when he cobbled together a few hundred quid off the back of a hard winter selling hats (long story) and bought his first road bike - a Trek 1.1 that was quickly relegated to winter steed, before it was sadly pinched a few years later. Creatively replacing it with a Trek 1.2, Jack mostly rides this bike around local cycle paths nowadays, but when he wants to get the racer out and be competitive his preferred events are time trials, sportives, triathlons and pogo sticking - the latter being another long story.  

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12 comments

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part_robot | 7 years ago
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New Ultegra front derailleur is back-compatible with older/other chainsets judging by my Dura Ace 9100 (I have Dura Ace 9100 on a SRAM /Quarq chainset now and it works fine).

Power meter is on Dura Ace 9100 and not officially released yet. It is going to be ludicrously expensive I gather so I very much doubt it'll be on Ultegra for a few years.

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Gasman Jim | 7 years ago
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Any news on what's happened to their long awaited powermeter?

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Pantster | 7 years ago
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Chainring spacing has changed. They announced it with the new dura ace groupset.

 

was wondering how that would affect using other brand cranksets with new systems but looks like the answer is that other make cranksets will work fine with new 9100/8000

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MrB123 | 7 years ago
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Anyone know if those new brake calipers will be compatible with the old 6800 shifters/brake levers?

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jn46 | 7 years ago
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If the chainset is similar to the 9100, the rings are further out to better accommodate the wider spacing of disc brake rear hubs. Having said that i run a 9100 chainset with a 6800 front mech and have no issues with reach.

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DaveE128 replied to jn46 | 7 years ago
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jn46 wrote:

If the chainset is similar to the 9100, the rings are further out to better accommodate the wider spacing of disc brake rear hubs. Having said that i run a 9100 chainset with a 6800 front mech and have no issues with reach.

I wonder if it depends on the precision of the front mech tab on the frame?

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handlebarcam | 7 years ago
1 like

Quote:

The new cranks won't work with the old front derailleur, but the new front derailleur will work with old cranks

Nope, didn't understand a word of that. They're cranks. Unless the number of gears is different, or the size of the chainrings have massively changed, they're compatible. That's how cranks work.

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Jimmy Ray Will replied to handlebarcam | 7 years ago
2 likes

handlebarcam wrote:

Quote:

The new cranks won't work with the old front derailleur, but the new front derailleur will work with old cranks

Nope, didn't understand a word of that. They're cranks. Unless the number of gears is different, or the size of the chainrings have massively changed, they're compatible. That's how cranks work.

 

That's my take too... my first question is why aren't they compatible?

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Bigtwin replied to Jimmy Ray Will | 7 years ago
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Jimmy Ray Will wrote:

handlebarcam wrote:

Quote:

The new cranks won't work with the old front derailleur, but the new front derailleur will work with old cranks

Nope, didn't understand a word of that. They're cranks. Unless the number of gears is different, or the size of the chainrings have massively changed, they're compatible. That's how cranks work.

 

That's my take too... my first question is why aren't they compatible?

 

Presumably they have moved the rings over closer to the crank arm/increased the "Q factor" of the rings, so you need more derail throw to reach.  Guess the new ones will travel far enough in and out to cover new and old, but old derail won''t throw the chain far enough away from the frame?

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CXR94Di2 | 7 years ago
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You need to update firmware aswell. From there you can toggle it on with the button on the control box under the handlebar.

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STATO | 7 years ago
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The BT-BN110 battery has been around for a while, i have one mated to my 6800, but it didnt give me syncro shift.  Is this a newly available thing with a firmware update?

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r.glancy replied to STATO | 7 years ago
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STATO wrote:

The BT-BN110 battery has been around for a while, i have one mated to my 6800, but it didnt give me syncro shift.  Is this a newly available thing with a firmware update?

 

yup, you need to do a firmware update. Its been available for more than a month now. Run the firmware update, you also need the bluetooth adapter so you can turn it on in the settings. once done you double press the junction box botton to go into semi shift, then double press again to go full syncro. works as advertised. I didnt think Id use it a lot but I do..helps stop cross chaining. 

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