We got a little preview of Campy EPS electronic shifting a while back, based on Mark Purdy's photos and impressions from a training session. Mark just built a custom Cyfac Absolu for NAHBS, so I stopped by iFIXBYX to get a first hand look at the system.
Lever feel is excellent – more throw, resistance, and feedback than Shimano Di2. The lowered thumb paddle is very accessible from all positions, definitely better in the drops than Di2. We stated in the original writeup that Campy's hold-multiple shift feature may not be faster than simply firing off several individual clicks, but we were dead wrong. Hold down either shift paddle for the rear derailleur and it instantly starts moving through the gears. You quickly get a feel for how long to hold down the paddle for a certain number of shifts.
Mark likes this placement for the control box – more aero and indicator lights are visible.
One little wire connects the shifters to the derailleurs. Super clean.
The front derailleur with clean internal wiring. It auto trims like Di2, but it doesn't make its shifts in two steps like Di2 (video of Di2 in action here).
The rear derailleur is almost as light as cabled rear derailleurs.
While Di2 has inner and outer limit screws on the front and rear, EPS has just one, seen above. It's more of a safety net to keep the cage out of the spokes. Once adjusted the system simply knows where the limits are, no need for limit screws.
Exit point for the rear derailleur wiring, which, for some reason, has a cable stop for this EPS specific bike.
Subtle reverse-relief downtube sticker, echoed by...
...the bottle cages!
EE brakes are 90 grams each and, unlike some other superlight brakes, they actually stop you. $600, though.
15 pounds 14 ounces with Mark's Ardennes standing in for whichever swank wheelset it'll sport at NAHBS. Mark has more shots of the bike here.
Having gotten my hands on EPS, I think it's clearly superior to Di2. It's lighter, has better feel at the levers, and the multiple shift feature is surprisingly quick and intuitive. Of course, once you factor in price...
Here's a video of it flying through the gears. Check out the front derailleur trimming itself, also note its simpler one-step motion. Make sure to view at 1080p full screen to appreciate my awesome rack focus move.
And now for something completely different. Whenver I'm at Mark's I ask him what's new and cool and he gives me a sob story about how he sees so many cool things he doesn't know what's cool any more. Then I beat him about the face and neck area while playing a tiny violin.
For you tubeless lovers, IRC's coming out with a 280g training and a 220g racing tire. Both are lighter and presumably faster and suppler than Hutchinsons. Full report once I get some time on them.
822 gram front wheel from Stan's, complete with sealant and skewer. iFIXBYX will host a Stan's free demo program. Look for an announcement here when it launches.