Ftp Failure with tacx vortex, New equipment questions and suggestions. power meter vs trainer?

So I messed up my last ftp test do to gearing and slipping.
I have a tacx vortex and am currently using my giant tcr sl2 on it.
I have a new roubaix elite but I cannot use it until I hit my weight goal.

So I am contemplating upgrading my trainer to a tacx flux s for $850 Cdn or to a cycleops Hammer for $1000.00 Cdn.

This will give me much better data and performance than the tacx vortex.

Something I just thought of would be to get a 4iiii power meter for my left crank. That way I could just use the tacx for resistance and get my power from the power meter. The question is will trainer road control the trainer separately from the power meter? That way TR could adjust the power from the 4iiii appropriately and the vortex would have to adjust accordingly. That way I would get proper resistance and data instead of the vortex’s over estimating!

Thank you.

If your tire was slipping on the trainer, make sure it was properly inflated and the trainer tension was tightened enough before considering an upgrade.

About the 4iiii power meter, you have a couple options:

  1. Use PowerMatch to control your trainer’s resistance based on your power meter data.
  2. Use both devices independently, so your trainer adjusts resistance on its own, but the power readings you see in the app come from your power meter.

You can learn more about this here:

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Thank you for the reply and the link.

Now I just have to decide what to do. Ride with the current bike and the current trainer and buy a power meter for the new bike (power meter will not fit on my giant). Or just get the new trainer and not have power outside at all… I also do not have have a head unit.

So its 1000 for a new trainer or 1000 for a power meter and a head unit. any suggestions?

I would definitely spend money where it will make the most difference - having power indoors and outdoors is worth it, especially on a new bike that you’re likely to keep for a while. You already have a smart trainer (not the latest and greatest but it’ll get the job done), so I would grab a power meter and head unit as that would make the most difference toward all of your riding and racing in the future.


Thank you so much Larry! Now I just have to hit my weight goal so I can ride the new bike :slight_smile:

Of course, always happy to help! Good luck with your season! :muscle:

I never got powermatch to work reliably with my Vortex and my Vector 3S. The lag was too great. What did mostly work was to just use the Vortex as a dumb trainer and put it in slope mode. Mostly worked because it became a major distraction to have to change gears during a ramp tests and manually attempt to hit my target power.
Bought a Tacx Neo instead for a decent price and haven’t looked back.

Damn back to the drawing board. Almost ordered the power meter…

I do all of my training on a Tacx Flow Smart. Its cheap and cheerful but works perfectly.

I don’t understand what your issue is. Why do you need a new trainer?

Will ERG or power match make you a faster cyclist? No. Possibly the opposite (no ERG outside and you don’t get faster while debugging your trainer).

Get a reliable power meter and focus on the important aspects of improving fitness and enjoying yourself.

Not a great issue, IMHO, because training and riding can and do differ. ERG is an amazing tool and one I am happy to have.

Your other concerns are valid, but lack of ERG outside is not one of them.

I have a Vortex and Favero Assiomas and have no issues with powermatch so it’s not a given that it’s a bad setup. No idea why some people seem to have issues and others don’t.

One thing that can massively influence slippage on the vortex is tyre choice. I started out using a Schwalbe trainer tyre on it (which I’d used for years on my old elite dumb trainer before with no issues) and had no end of slippage problems no matter what I did. It was so bad that the tyre shredded itself and left blue rubber everywhere before completely wearing through and blowing out after about 6 months.

Whilst waiting for a replacement trainer tyre to come in I threw on an old road tyre I had lying around (extremely cheap Bontrager T1 that came as standard on my winter bike) and suddenly, no slippage. No need to fiddle with the tension to make it usable, it just worked. It’s still on there 18 months and many 1000s of km later so I’d definitely try another tyre if slipping is a big issue for you


Thank you all for your input. I’m going to keep the vortex and get a 4iiii power meter and try power match once I lose enough weight to get on my new roubaix. Power meter will not fit on my tcr. I’m hoping that the power meter will give me proper reporting and power match so that I can get better numbers riding. Then I will also have it for outdoor use.

thx all.

Sounds like a solid plan to me! Just out of curiosity, what’s the issue that’s stopping the power meter fitting on the giant? Groupset, frame clearance or other?

Giant tcx SLR 2 has fsa omega cranks, the roubaix has shimano 105.

Continental ultra sport 2 is cheap and doesn’t wear at all (!) on my Tacx trainer. I think I could use it for hours a day, for years.
120 PSI and a lot of roller tension.

Ah, fair enough. I’d imagine with a bottom bracket and crankset change you could switch that to 105 too, and get the power meter working on both bikes but it depends whether that’s a priority for you or not

If it’s worth anything, I used to have issues with my Tacx Vortex when I couldn’t be bothered to inflate my tires (consistently at 110psi), calibrate via the Tacx Utility app (to make sure the tension is just right), and calibrate in the TR app prior to a workout. Since then I’ve had no problems.

These 3 steps seem like a pain, but since tire pressure doesn’t change too much, I normally do step 1 once a week and steps 2-3 prior to every workout. Takes less than 3 minutes. Good luck!

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That’s exactly what I did for this test. Everything would have been good if I had not put it in the 34 ring as the instructions stated. From now on big ring. But I wont bother until the new tire gets here. Until then ill just do the workouts.