Wahoo Core alternatives

After my ride into work today I have had the painful realisation (yet again) that you can’t buy speed. 3 months only commuting means I have no power and my cardio runs out PDQ, carbon rims aren’t going to fix this so it’s time to get back on a trainer.

My current dumb one is old (at least 7 years) and very noisy (the gf does not like it!) so was looking for an ERG wheel off trainer. Wahoo’s Core seemed to get plenty of good reviews but having read here and elsewhere there are questions about reliability and for £700 quid I don’t want issues cos that is a whole lot of money.

What good alternatives do people have and how noisy have you found it?

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Tacx neo 1 They are on sale because the 2 is out ! I bought a kickr and had issues . I bought the neo after handing in the kickr and iT is Great . No callibration needed etc

The Flux S / Flux 2 might be a replacement at a similar price point.

I’ve had immense luck with the snap and it’s QUIET. I had a hammer before this and I personally consider the snap to be an upgrade.

While there have been issues with the 2018 Kickr and the Kickr Core I think it’s worth noting that seeing a ton of complaints online does not indicate that many units, or even a significant percentage of units, will fail.

With something like the Kickr Core if they sold 100,000 of them in Q4 2018 and had a 1% failure rate that would mean 1000 very vocal very post heavy users complaining on facebook and on these forums. If they saw something like a 25-33% failure rate they’d be completely overwhelmed with 25000 vocal angry users.

None of this is to say that the products didn’t both have significant release problems (I had a faulty kickr core delivered to me directly from Wahoo a few months ago, they replaced it a week later) but I do think that we can end up in a bit of an echo chamber on these things where the only people posting are those who had an issue while the (vast?) majority of users had no issues and as such don’t need to even check whether such a complaint venue exists.

So…honestly, I’d be perfectly fine recommending a 2018 Kickr or a Kickr Core to someone right now, it’s a fine product and they handled the broken one I got from them quickly and without any cost to me.

Not to say there aren’t other options that might be every bit as good - the smart trainer market is in a fantastic spot right now - there are tons of great options - just that if you have looked at everything and the Kickr Core sounds like it matches your needs I would recommend getting one

Honestly - more of a commentary on the state of internet complaints than anything else. Not intended to be a ringing endorsement or criticism of Wahoo


I went through the same debate and having owned several Wahoo trainers over the years I definitely wanted to get away from them. As far away as possible actually.

I ended up getting the Elite Direto and haven’t looked back. One thing that I love about the Elite is that it has a factory calibration number written on the bottom. You can calibrate it every other week or so and if you are close to that calibration number you have some peace of mind your data is accurate. I generally calibrate at the end of a workout every week or every other week tops. I have the Favero Assioma pedals that I record on my Garmin 935 and I let the Direto run and record my TR sessions. At the end I’m usually less than 5 watts off (difference between the Elite and the Assiomas) over the course of the workout, something that I was never able to do with any Wahoo product I owned. YMMV and good luck.


To add on to this, if you look around this forum I dont think I’ve seen someone who hasen’t had an issue with just about every trainer. If you search for Tacx, Wahoo, Elite, etc, you will find at least one thread of people complaining about the unit not doing something right.

A lot of people hate the Elite trainers, and with valid reasons (their support is a joke) but the v1 driving can be picked up super cheap if you look around a bit. I would buy that over the direto because the plug in cadence sensor is a must imo. Took some work to find a good setup for mine, but fairly flawless since I found the right combo.

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For what it’s worth, Kickrs tend to be some of the most troublefree trainers we deal with in our Support Department. Whenever issues do arise, their support sorts them out fairly quickly. I would personally recommend a Kickr without hesitation.


Wahoo kickr cores have sold a plenty, I don’t know what percentage have had problems but mine which I bought in October has been perfect. Really pleased after upgrading from Tack Vortex smart. Wahoos probably outsell most brands and so it is expected that there will be complaints at times. I don’t think you can just ignore the core because all trainer brands will have some issues.

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I also have a first gen Kickr Snap and have had ZERO issues with it - it just works. It is also very quiet.

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Funny, I went the opposite direction, from Elite to Wahoo. Using Assioma Duo pedals and power match. Had the Direto for about six months and got tired of the lag in resistance changes and lack of consistency using power match on steady state intervals.

Since selling the Direto and picking up the Kickr Core, I have had little to no issues. Still some minor resistance fluctuations using power match, but not as wide of variances as with the Direto.

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Yup, the two most common faults in Elite seem to be slow adjustments and inconsistency in ERG.

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