Just seen the very interesting news that Wattbike have a brand new Atom coming out next week:
I was an early adopter of the original but sent it back due to massive frustration with the poor shifting performance (resistance changes). Sounds like they have a brand new setup under the hood for super fast resistance changes and increased resistance ceiling.
If they have managed to actually do this, that makes it perfect for TR. If they also managed to add some sort of tactile feedback to the shifts, then that would make it perfect for Zwift too.
It was always my favourite looking bike, solid as a rock and so stable - I would be tempted back, especially as the price isn’t crazy compared to other offerings and they offer finance too.
Fingers crossed - looking forward to reading some detailed reviews soon.
According to DCR Wattbike already made some improvements to the gear shifting speed but if they have added some kind of tactile feedback too that would be fantastic.
Although I’m wondering if this is just a touchscreen-less home version of the gym focused Atom X?
They did make some updates ok, but there was still a perceivable delay by all accounts.
I’m guessing the new electromagnetic resistance motor will solve the delay problems (as its the same sort of technology as used in the high end smart trainers), but i’d love to see some sort of tactile feedback too.
I would have dearly loved shifters like the Kickr bike for a totally immersive experience, but judging by the photos, they’ve stuck with buttons.
Good point on the AtomX as it seems to use the newer technology.
Will have a read into it to see how it has been received, but you’re right - at this early stage it does appear a lot like an X with no screen.
@dcrainmaker had an Atom X but don’t think he has written up a review regarding gear changes and the like?
He seemed excited about the possibility of putting TR on the included screen so it would be interesting so see if the consumer version keeps the VGA screen connector with the screen as an optional extra - i’d pay for that.
Interesting…looks like it could be a really solid option.
Fingers crossed we get some more details and reviews shortly - I returned my original Atom with a heavy heart as it looked like such an amazing piece of kit - but the delays in resistance changing drove me crazy. At the top end of the market you expect things to just work - lets hope they have cracked it this time.
How long until we find out if it’s any good?
Whenever Ray or another reviewer gets the bike and posts a review.
Sadly, based on his prior comments, Shane seems to be a bit black listed from Wattbike based on his Atom work, so I don’t expect him to have access to the Atom X. But who knows, things may have changed?
Ray has had the Atom X for over a month now roughly, so hopefully he can give us an indication of how the resistance is working on it and this will give us a bit of a guide as to what to expect from the Atom v2, as there seems to be very little reviews anywhere on the Atom X.
I had an original Atom too. Burn me once, shame on you. Burn me twice, shame on me.
One related press release:
Still has the bonkers 26.0mm handlebars and the overdesigned front end. The Atom v1 is now a great bike for TR etc but sucks for Zwift. Not sure how much better they can make it with these limited changes. Just looks like a marketing revamp.
Will be interested in reviews. Other thing that I’ll be tuning in to is whether it is silent running. V1 certainly wasn’t and the Neo and Wahoo top end trainers and bikes are. This is important to a lot of users nowadays.
Other points re shifting is why I cancelled my original order and went with a Neo. Have never looked back.
Externally it’ll be the same as v1. 170mm cranks. 160mm Q-Factor. Same hoods/buttons/bars. etc. The move away from the older resistance unit could bring the ATOM v2 more inline with the Kickr/Neo/Stages bikes.
Why oh why all smart bike manufacturers can’t or won’t develop a simple Sram like click shifter for these top end bikes is beyond me.
They are trying to replicate bike feel, this would give the authenticity of a proper shifter along with the immediate tactile feedback of a solid shift. Working with rubberised buttons that you’re not even sure if you’ve pressed is just not on. I see the stages bike suffers from the same problem. Wahoo seem to be the only ones close to nailing this.
Guess I’ll have to wait to see what Zwift come out with hardware wise…or for the market to mature a bit. I’ll stick with my trusty kickr in the meantime.
I ordered a Wattbike last week (will receive it in 9-11 weeks). Do you think I should cancel the order? The down side is that I have no idea when the next gen Atom is released in Sweden.
If you ordered your WBA (v1?) for use on TR and for fitness then I’d probably stick with what you have. If you’ve ordered it for HIIT or Zwift… get your money back.
Understood, now managed to find a bit more detail on the design spec. I contacted Wattbike today and asked if there was likely to be any trade-in or discount for the early adopters of the original WBA. Short answer was no but worth the call to ask. Again another 9 - 11 week build time so they seem to have learned nothing from the last Atom launch. I cannot believe they’ve not redesigned the front end to support standard size handlebars, and made them easier to fit. The supplied bars are hopeless and the clamping structure looks like it was designed to survive a hit from a lorry, but not for any fine adjustment to bar angle. £1,900 is a lot of cash for this, especially when you can probably buy a Kickr or Neo and a secondhand bike off gumtree for the same money (and therefore have arguably better flexibility). Hmmm, deeply conflicted though as it ticks many of our household boxes, but I’ll wait for some decent reviews this time before parting with the £££.
The new one is going to be 19% more expensive if that makes a difference for you?
Depending on early reviews, and estimated delivery dates, I might consider replacing my 1st Gen Atom with the 2nd Gen.
Structured workouts on Trainerroad, Wattbike Hub and Zwift have been fine, racing/short intervals have been sluggish (as everyone agrees). Improvements on the resistance system would be nice, and assuming second hand wattbike demand is as high as it has been in the last few months, might not cost me a huge amount to upgrade…