1x curious, let's talk about it (road bikes only)

I currently have a Tarmac with full Sram Red eTap AXS drivetrain, 48/35 chainring, 10-33 XG-1290 Red cassette for the road and on my trainer I have a 10-33 XG-1270 Force cassette (which slightly annoying because while everything is indexed perfectly with the Red cassette about half of the gears are ever so slightly off when using the Force cassette on the trainer, though not a huge deal as I mostly use erg mode in the best-fitting gear with a straight chainline). I currently use the Sram Red / Quarq powermeter both on the road and on the trainer and would want to continue to use the powermeter there if I can.

I’m looking at the new Sram X-Sync 1x chainring (and am open to others!) and am looking for opinions. The largest X-Sync chainring is a 50, I’d consider that or if I could find a compatible 52 or 54 that might also be an option. It seems if you used a 54 on the front and a 11-52 in the rear (would this work with a Sram Eagle AXS derailleur?) this would effectively get the same gear range as my current 48/35 & 11-33 but obviously with much larger jumps between gears. In watching videos from Vegan Cyclist he says an oval chainring tends to mask the large jumps, I’m not sure exactly what this all means as I’ve used a 2x with ‘large’ road cassette in the back for a while (10-33 Red currently, 11-34 Ultegra mechanical previously). It’s fairly mountainous where I live so I do need/want climbing gears in addition to decending gears. I often am spinning pretty fast with 48F 10R so I don’t want to give that up either. Looking at Sram gear specifically (I want feedback on others that would work well) it seems I could use a XG-1295 in 10-52 (this is X01 Eagle AXS, is this roughly equivalent to Force?, with XX1 Eagle AXS being equivalent to Red?), or the XG-1299 Eagle XX1 10-50.

Maybe I won’t do any of this because I am already pretty happy with what I have, I’m just looking for opinions from people who have actually done this or from people who’ve looked into it before.

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I have 1x on my flat crit bike (54t, 11-30t) and it’s ok for that. But any rolling terrain I want 2x. And if you live in a mountainous area, I don’t think you’ll be happy with 1x. That’s just my opinion.


Hi. Same thought when I built up my GRoadbike. 44mm slicks to go fast on roads and light gravel so wanted 1x for simplicity. I have an XPLR rear der and the 10-44 casette. I tried 42 oval, 44 and 46t chainrings. So far liking the 46 the best. Lowest gear is not an issue for where I ride (Switzerland so not exactly flat). But the gear jumps on flatish roads/routes aren’t for me. That’s highly personal though but I went ahead and bought the 10-33 for fast group rides and flat routes, which I much prefer over the xplr 10,11,13,15 jumps.

Eagle casette is even worse with 10,12,14 and so on. Couldn’t do it personally and why change your setup when it works for you? 1x is less efficient anyway and you already have the gear range you’re looking for so why bother with changing that? Besides, let’s be honest that dinner plate on a road bike looks hideous.

In hindsight I should’ve gone 2x. Personally 1x is not for me on the road.

I run a 50 with an 11-32 on my road bike. I find it does very well in my area, but my climbs aren’t steep or very long. For my w/kg, anything over 7 or 8% isn’t ideal. I also try to stay out of big-big as much as possible. This bike is only used for fast solo/group riding, so no way would I run this setup for everything.

It really comes down to how high your w/kg are given the terrain. I’m also sensitive to be gear jumps on the road, so I wouldn’t like a mtb cassette.

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I have a 3T Strada 1x, running an oval 42 up front and an 11-36 on the back. I live near the North Downs, south west of London and the bike is fine for my (lack or) climbing ability on the short-sharp hills around me, plus it’s perfectly fine for fast paced group rides.

I love the 1x set up and would buy a similar bike again in a heartbeat.

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if i had to money to explurge i’d buy a 1x road bike with a classified powershift hub.
it appears to be the best of both worlds. no FD but all the benefits of 2x

i have booked a testing but from feedback it seems its like having a 2x but without crosschaining, or small rings. etc.

The claim that oval chainrings mask jumps is silly, but the 1299 cassettes are very good and the gaps are just fine for me. You can get garbaruk 52 or 54 tooth chainrings and they will be very good. Garbaruk also makes 12 speed cassettes that work for this

I run 1x on my gravel bike that I use for road rides more often than my 2x road bike. I’ll either run eagle 10/50 or xplr 10/44 in the back depending on what gravel event I coming up. I’m not sure I’d do 1x on a pure road bike, but I wouldn’t be looking at a 50t chainring if any climbing was involved (especially if you are running a road cassette). With a 10 on the back, there aren’t many situations where you’ll need a chainring bigger than 44 or maybe a 46 unless you are a 5w/kg kind of guy. I run a 42 chainring with my road 1x setup and there are times I have to spin a bit, but very rare I’d ever risk getting dropped from a fast group. Slight downhill tailwind is the only tough situation. I used to ride with a really strong guy who would do fast group rides in his 39 small ring just for cadence work. Most of us need a big chainring much less than we think.


To stir the pot a little bit. E*Thirteen makes a 9-45 cassette that works with XPLR. So you could keep a 46 or 48t front and get that higher top end. I have it on my gravel bike and it’s pretty nice. I don’t particularly notice big jumps but that’s something I’m not very sensitive to .

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This works for the gear ratio, but if you spend a lot of time in the high gears you wear the cassettes faster. As someone who doesn’t believe in coasting downhill on road, I always wear the smallest cog of a cassette out first so really like having a big chainring to minimize that.