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review

Genetic STV Stem 90mm

8
£49.99

VERDICT:

8
10
A good weight, a decent price and it is well finished – what's not to like?
Classy looks
Good price
Secure fit on steerer and bar
Good range of sizes
Weight: 
115g

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The Genetic STV stem is a good-looking bit of kit thanks to its stealthy finish and profiled shape. It does the job it's designed to do with ease – and without breaking the bank or the scales.

Let's be honest, a stem isn't the most exciting component on your bike and as long as the tolerances are close it's going to grip onto a handlebar and fork steerer without issue. But I think it also needs to look good – and the STV does exactly that.

It gets a cool-looking stealth black finish on the logos, while the matt black paint has a high-quality look, giving a smooth finish around any sharp edges.

2023 Genetic STV Stem 90mm - 5.jpg

As with most of today's stems, the STV is designed to fit a 26.8mm/1 1/8in fork steerer and a handlebar with a 31.8mm clamping diameter, or 31.7mm in the case of a Deda bar (in reality they have same diameter).

It comes in a wide range of lengths too, from 60-130mm, which should mean that most of us can easily find the right one.

> How to choose the best stem length

The stem comes with black anodised bolts that have had threadlock applied to them to stop them rattling loose, and these take care of clamping duties effectively. I like the use of a single face plate, rather than a two-part affair, as I feel that this makes it easier to equally torque each bolt.

2023 Genetic STV Stem 90mm - 3.jpg

The inside of the face plate is serrated to stop the handlebar slipping, and the serrations do a good job. I used the stem primarily on my gravel bike and even with the rutted trails after a tough winter there was no slippage of the bar at all.

2023 Genetic STV Stem 90mm - 2.jpg

In terms of angles, it comes with a +/- 6° rise, and the multiple logos allow you to run it either way without it looking odd.

Value

The £49.99 RRP is the same as when I reviewed the 110mm version with white logos back in 2019. And considering inflation over the last few years that's good to see.

The Easton EA70 stem also cost £49.99 when Matt reviewed it back in 2020, but it's now £59.99. It's also a nice-looking aluminium alloy stem, though at 140g it's a bit weightier than the 115g STV. Okay, the Easton is 10mm longer, but that won't equate to an extra 25g.

The aluminium FSA Energy SCR stem also comes in slightly heavier than the Genetic STV, it's slightly more expensive and it doesn't come any shorter than 80mm, but Jamie liked it when he tested it, and it works well with Di2 and Campag's EPS.

Conclusion

Stem weight isn't the most important factor, especially at this price point, and while you can find plenty of stems that are cheaper or more expensive and which do much the same job, I feel that the STV offers a great balance of weight, looks and cost.

Verdict

A good weight, a decent price and it is well finished – what's not to like?

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road.cc test report

Make and model: Genetic STV Stem 90mm

Size tested: 90mm

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?

Genetic says: "One of the neatest handlebar stems on the market for drop bars."

It looks good, and does the job.

Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?

Material: 7075 Aluminium

Rise: 60/70/80mm 13 degrees +/-, 90/100/110/120/130mm 6 degrees +/- .

Steerer clamp size: 1 1/8"

Handlebar Clamp Diameter: 31.8mm

Colour: Satin Black

Rate the product for quality of construction:
 
8/10
Rate the product for performance:
 
8/10
Rate the product for durability:
 
8/10
Rate the product for weight (if applicable)
 
8/10
Rate the product for value:
 
6/10

Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose

It clamps firmly on both the fork steerer and handlebar.

Tell us what you particularly liked about the product

It has a high-quality finish.

Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product

Nothing to really dislike.

How does the price compare to that of similar products in the market, including ones recently tested on road.cc?

It's well priced for the weight and the overall finish quality. I think it looks more expensive than the Easton stem I mentioned in the review although these days it actually comes in a little cheaper than the Easton and FSA's similar Energy SCR stem.

Did you enjoy using the product? Yes

Would you consider buying the product? Yes

Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes

Use this box to explain your overall score

There is nothing to dislike here in terms of performance, and thanks to the quality and the price I rate this as a very good product.

Overall rating: 8/10

About the tester

Age: 44  Height: 180cm  Weight: 76kg

I usually ride: This month's test bike  My best bike is: B'Twin Ultra CF draped in the latest bling test components

I've been riding for: Over 20 years  I ride: Every day  I would class myself as: Expert

I regularly do the following types of riding: time trialling, commuting, club rides, sportives, fixed/singlespeed,

As part of the tech team here at F-At Digital, senior product reviewer Stu spends the majority of his time writing in-depth reviews for road.cc, off-road.cc and ebiketips using the knowledge gained from testing over 1,500 pieces of kit (plus 100's of bikes) since starting out as a freelancer back in 2009. After first throwing his leg over a race bike back in 2000, Stu's ridden more than 170,000 miles on road, time-trial, track, and gravel bikes, and while he's put his racing days behind him, he still likes to smash the pedals rather than take things easy. With a background in design and engineering, he has an obsession with how things are developed and manufactured, has a borderline fetish for handbuilt metal frames and finds a rim braked road bike very aesthetically pleasing!

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4 comments

Avatar
bobbinogs | 11 months ago
2 likes

I must admit to being puzzled by some of the comments around stems.  For me, as long as they weigh about 100-120g and hold things in place with some decent bolts...and are the advertised length and angle, what more is there to add?  I just don't get why some stems are better than others and justify some huge price differences?  I cannot recall ever riding my bike and thinking my stem needs to be improved in some way, apart from just cosmetically, naturally!!

Avatar
I love my bike replied to bobbinogs | 11 months ago
0 likes

Indeed, a less prestigous brand can perform as well or actually better. For example, the Kalloy UNO 3D forged 7° UNO 3D forged stem costs around £25 in 60mm-130mm lengths, with 90mm claimed to weigh 99g & 130mm weighing 120g.

Avatar
ChrisB200SX replied to I love my bike | 11 months ago
1 like
I love my bike wrote:

Indeed, a less prestigous brand can perform as well or actually better. For example, the Kalloy UNO 3D forged 7° UNO 3D forged stem costs around £25 in 60mm-130mm lengths, with 90mm claimed to weigh 99g & 130mm weighing 120g.

One of the best stems for weight/performance/value, I have experienced issues with getting Titanium bolts that fit though, the head is a slimmer than standard I think.

The same manufacturer makes stems for some of the big bike brands, mostly just with different logos. I think one is Cannondale.

Avatar
hawkinspeter replied to ChrisB200SX | 11 months ago
2 likes
ChrisB200SX wrote:

One of the best stems for weight/performance/value, I have experienced issues with getting Titanium bolts that fit though, the head is a slimmer than standard I think.

The same manufacturer makes stems for some of the big bike brands, mostly just with different logos. I think one is Cannondale.

It may not be a good idea going for titanium bolts where they have to bear load as they are weaker than the equivalent steel bolts.

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