Kickr V5 2020, Direct Connect

Bringing a hardwire to your wireless trainer!
Good luck TrainerRoad team, seems like a lot of software development just to plug your V5 Kickr into a router.

The cycling tips article mentions that you could also plug it into your computer’s ethernet port.

I’d much rather they built a direct USB connection option, ethernet isn’t the best option in my opinion. Very few people have their router in an easy central location, generally at/near the demarc point and your trainer isn’t going to be near it.

I guess it would work if you were building a dedicated training cave though.

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The key selling point for this is to prevent a trainer connection dropout.

No more worrying about your wireless connection dropping during your virtual races and online group rides. KICKR Direct Connect provides a hard wired solution from your KICKR Smart Trainer to your internet router.

To which it makes no sense to release it without support for Zwift.
Yes I’m sure it might help with some TrainerRoad support requests but I can’t see group workouts really being the target audience.

Indeed, comical that Zwift is not already compatible. That is THE primary use case here. I see that RGT Cycling is covered, and they are racing there, so it’s a good option for that. But the other training apps are less of an “issue” with power data drops. It can break the flow of a work interval, but far less frustrating compared to falling off a group in virtual racing and group riding. That is rage-quite inducing when it happens. :stuck_out_tongue:

Great technical video from GPLama explaining this and setting out what the future should bring us:


Many powerline adapters or mesh WiFi units have an ethernet port, and are very easy to set up.

I’m sure that an old router could also be used to connect the ethernet cable from the Kickr to the existing WiFi network too, but a bit of techy skillz.

Ultimately a ‘direct’ WiFi connection from a trainer to your home network seems likely to appear as an option for future trainers, but I guess a cable to a solid port is always going to be a good option in a location that’s suffering from interference. Presumably a lot of people run Zwift on devices that do have an ethernet port, simply because it needs more serious hardware for graphics etc than something like TrainerRoad.

Yeah I know about meshes or powerlines but it just seems like an odd choice of socket, or have USB and ethernet.

WiFi on the other hand would be good and probably nice stable connections.

But what would you connect USB to? I guess it could go straight into an Android or iOS device, but I’m not sure how easily that would work.

(For a PC, an ethernet / USB adapter is very cheap and easy, in case you have a laptop with no ethernet port.)

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Yup, USB is a dead end. Shane covers it in his vid.

I take it back, I see the logic. I think I got blinkered with my personal network setup and fun with powerlines! If they all had WiFi (trainers), an access point would be easy to add.

I like the sound of WiFi being integrated, and the trainer dealing with my HR strap (which is a PITA for me personally right now!).

(Edited for spelling and grammar)

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Whilst I understand most WiFi networks are going to be on the 5ghz wave it seems strange to replace one wireless issue with another wireless :man_shrugging:

I think issue is in that 2.4 ghz range that bluetooth, ant+ and wifi operate in. Wireless is going to be the way. Just look at how 5g is planned.

Says the guy that just spent a couple weeks running cat-6 through his whole house to every room.

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That is a Zwift problem. They along with other platforms must have had early access and/or information to do the software development necessary to enable/support the dongle on their respective platforms. Wouldn’t be surprised if Zwift took months to finally support this dongle. Then again, they could push another update this week w/support for it. :man_shrugging:

edit: DCR says he can’t get the dongle to work with Sufferfest which is part of Wahoo :joy: That is hilarious. He said it works for some but not others such as himself.

as @mcneese.chad said, USB is a dead end. It’s too limited. Not every device is going to have a USB port. And even if it does, is it USB-A, USB-C etc… If you don’t have a router or switch in the area w/your trainer, then you ar probably running WiFi. Many WiFi extenders/repeaters have ethernet ports which could be used to get the Kickr onto the network.

WiFi and/or the port will most likely be part of the Kickr v6. This was probably a temporary measure to get something done w/v5 in time to ship.

Another big issue w/WiFi is the regulatory aspect. It’s a lot of testing and paperwork and that multiplies across multiple countries regulatory agencies.

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I had no issues running it with the SUF. Actually it was the only app that worked for me when I was testing it. But the main thing is to make sure it’s on the same subnet. If you have different wifis or a wifi extender, DirectConnect and PC can get different subnets.

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when will it be realized in trainerroad ?

Hello! In the Wahoo app, I see that my Direct Connect is on the network, but I’ve yet to find a way/documentation on how to pair this with TrainerRoad. Does TR support the Direct Connect? How do I configure it/verify that’s TR is using the DC?

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I think Directcon is currently only available in the beta versions of TrainerRoad. As far as I know you will pair it as a power source so you can tell it is being used but which devices are connected.

Good luck and post some results/impressions

I am pretty sure I saw the Direct Connect mentioned in the release notes of a recent beta update. I suggest you go that route if you want to play with it. If anything, you might be able to provide feedback to TR if anything is odd or broken.

edit: here you go

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If you have it connected in the desktop app beta, it looks like this:


Probably shouldn’t have a bluetooth icon. :slight_smile: