Shimano 105 Di2 vs SRAM Rival AXS (12-speed) Groupset

By : Mr Mamil
Updated :

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Shimano 105 Di2 vs SRAM Rival AXS
Shimano 105 Di2 vs SRAM Rival AXS

The Shimano 105 Di2 and SRAM Rival AXS are entry-level, 12-speed electronic shifting systems. Both groupsets have their pros and cons, and in many cases, cyclists chose them based on personal preferences or in some cases, availability.

While both are 12-speed and wireless, many key differences between them aren’t obvious to the normal cyclist. This article takes a closer look at the features and specifications of Shimano 105 Di2 and SRAM Rival AXS, and breaks them down to help you decide which is the best fit for your needs.

Key takeaways

ComparisonShimano 105 Di2 (R7170)SRAM Rival AXS
LaunchedJune 2022April 2021
Total weight2,990 to 3,100g3,100 to 3,200g
ShiftingSemi-wirelessFull wireless
Disc brakesYesYes
Rim brakesNoNo
Pricing$1,900 to $2,000$1,400 to $1,600
Overview of Shimano 105 Di2 vs SRAM Rival AXS electronic groupsets comparison

Brake levers and shifters

Shimano 105 Di2 vs SRAM Rival AXS Brake Levers
Shimano 105 Di2 vs SRAM Rival AXS Brake Levers
ComparisonShimano 105 Di2SRAM Rival AXS
Model no.ST-R7170-R/LED-RIV-D1
Disc brakeAvailableAvailable
Rim brakeNot availableNot available
Batteries (each lever)2x CR1632CR2032
Lever materialAlloyAlloy
Hood buttonNoNo
Cable ports10
Brake caliper mountFlat mountFlat mount
Weight (each lever)387g425g
Price (USD)$405$387
Shimano 105 Di2 vs SRAM Rival AXS brake levers and shifters comparison

The Shimano 105 Di2 brake levers and shifters are completely redesigned compared to its predecessor (R7000). They now have the same design and ergonomics as the Dura-Ace R9200 and Ultegra R8170

Each brake lever uses two CR1632 batteries, which Shimano claims to last up to 4 years of use. Unlike the Dura-Ace and Ultegra shifters, the Shimano 105 shifters don’t have the third button on the hood.

The SRAM Rival AXS has a different hood design than the Force and Red AXS. It has a narrower grip, lower profile, and slimmer design. There are no cable ports for Blip shifters.

Similarities

  • Wireless shifting. Shimano 105 can be configured wireless or wired (requires additional cables and Junction A). SRAM Rival AXS is a fully wireless setup.
  • Material. Both brake levers are made of alloy and shifter buttons are made of plastic.
  • Coin battery powered. Shimano 105 requires 2x CR1632 batteries, while SRAM Rival AXS requires a single CR2032 battery per lever.
  • Cable port. Shimano 105 has a single cable port for sprint shifters (Shimano), while SRAM Rival AXS has none.
  • Lever reach adjustment is supported by Both Shimano 105 and SRAM Rival AXS. This refers to the distance between the drop bar grip to the brake lever.

Differences

  • Shift buttons. There are two shift buttons on the Shimano 105 levers compared to one on SRAM Rival AXS. The buttons are fully customizable through the Shimano E-Tube App or SRAM AXS mobile app.
  • Weight. Shimano 105 is around 38g lighter (levers, brake caliper, brake hose).
  • Free stroke adjustment is only available in Shimano 105. This refers to the point in the brake levers’ stroke where the brake pads come into contact with the rotor. SRAM refers to this as the Contact Point Adjustment and is only available in Force and Red AXS.
  • Tactile feel. The Shimano shift buttons feel lighter compared to the more tactile SRAM buttons.

Rear derailleurs

Shimano 105 Di2 vs SRAM Rival AXS Rear Derailleurs
Shimano 105 Di2 vs SRAM Rival AXS Rear Derailleurs
ComparisonShimano 105 Di2SRAM Rival AXS
Model no.RD-R7150RD-RIV-E-D1
Weight300g354g
Price (USD)$280$481
Max. cog size36T36T
Cage materialAluminumAluminum
Pulley bearingsSteelSteel
Shimano 105 Di2 vs SRAM Rival AXS rear derailleurs comparison

The Shimano 105 rear derailleur sport the same design as the Ultegra and Dura-Ace models. It features the Shimano Shadow design, which places the rear derailleur in a low-profile design that provides aerodynamic benefits and lessens the chances of damage in a crash.

The Shimano rear derailleur also acts as the hub of the Di2 system. It holds the charging port, LED indicators, and function button.

The SRAM Rival AXS rear derailleur is noticeably bigger as it needs to accommodate the battery.  

Similarities

  • Long cage. Both the rear derailleurs can be considered long cages and support a maximum cog size of 36T.
  • Cage material. Both rear derailleur cages are made from aluminum with steel pulley wheel bearings.

Differences

  • 1X compatibility is supported by the SRAM Rival AXS.
  • Weight. The SRAM Rival AXS rear derailleur is significantly heavier (+54g) than the Shimano 105. This is mainly due to the battery, which weighs 26g.
More reading : How to Get the Most Out of Shimano Di2 Features

Front derailleurs

Shimano 105 Di2 vs SRAM Rival AXS Front Derailleurs
Shimano 105 Di2 vs SRAM Rival AXS front derailleurs
ComparisonShimano 105 Di2SRAM Rival AXS
Model no.FD-R7150FD-RIV-E-D1
Weight138g177g
Price (USD)$153$335
Shimano 105 Di2 vs SRAM Rival AXS front derailleurs comparison

Shimano has completely redesigned the front derailleur to be lower profile and slimmer. 

The SRAM Rival AXS front derailleur is noticeably bigger as it needs to accommodate the battery. It’s heavier (+39g) than the Shimano 105. This is mainly due to the battery, which weighs 24g.

Cranksets

Shimano 105 Di2 vs SRAM Rival AXS Cranksets
Shimano 105 Di2 vs SRAM Rival AXS Cranksets
ComparisonShimano 105 Di2SRAM Rival AXS
Model no.FC-R7100FC-RIV-D1
Chainring options50-34T, 52-36T46/33T, 48/35T
BCD110mm107mm
Crankarm materialAluminumAluminum
Crankarm lengths160, 165, 170, 172.5, 175mm160, 165, 170, 172.5, 175mm
Axle diameter24mm29mm
Chainline44.5mm45, 47.5mm (wide)
PowermeterNoOptional
Weight760g (50/34)844g (46/33)
Price (USD)$180$241
Shimano 105 Di2 vs SRAM Rival AXS cranksets comparison

Shimano stuck with the traditional compact (50/34T) and semi-compact (52/36T) when they moved to 12s. Keep in mind that the Shimano 11s chainrings are incompatible with the 12s crankset, although they both have the same BCD. The difference lies in the placement of the 4 arms.

On the other hand, SRAM introduced the X-Range Gearing for its 12s groupsets. The SRAM Rival AXS cranksets are available in 46/33T or 48/35T combination. There is also a power meter version of the SRAM Rival AXS cranksets.

Similarities

  • Crankarm lengths. Shimano 105 and SRAM Rival AXS crankarms are available in 160, 165, 170, 172.5, 175mm lengths. The 170 and 172.5mm are the most commonly used length and 160 and 165mm could be harder to source.
  • Crankarm material. Both are made from aluminum.

Differences

  • Chainring combination. The Shimano 105 is available in 50/34T (compact) and 52-36T (semi-compact). The chainring sizes for SRAM Rival AXS are slightly smaller at 46/33T or 48/35T as it uses a 10T smallest cog.
  • BCD. While both cranksets use a 4-arm design, the Shimano 105 has a 110mm BCD, and SRAM Rival AXS has a 107mm BCD. 
  • Bottom bracket compatibility. Shimano 105 uses a 24mm steel axle. SRAM Rival uses a 107mm steel axle and is only compatible with SRAM DUB bottom brackets.
  • Power meter. The SRAM Rival AXS has an option for power meter unit, which adds around 40g to the total crankset weight. It’s powered by AAA battery.
  • Wide chainline. SRAM Rival AXS has a wide version, which caters to bikes using wider tires up to 700x45c.
More reading : How to Decide Between Compact vs Standard Crankset

Gear ratios

FrontRearShimano gear ratioSRAM gear ratio
50114.55
34360.94
52114.73
36361.00
46104.60
33301.10
33360.92
48104.80
35301.17
35360.97
50114.55
34341.00
52114.73
36341.06
Shimano 105 Di2 vs SRAM Rival AXS gear ratios comparison

The gear ratios are among the biggest differences between the Shimano 105 and SRAM Rival AXS.

SRAM’s X-Range Gearing generally has a wider gearing range and tighter jumps between cogs than Shimano. This makes it more versatile and easier to maintain the same cadence after a gear shift.

The table below shows the possible gearing setup for Shimano 105 and SRAM Rival AXS.

  • High gear. SRAM Rival AXS has the highest gear ratio at 4.8 using a 48/35T front chainring and 10T rear cog, followed by Shimano (4.73) with 52/36T front chainring and a 11T rear cog.
  • Low gear. SRAM Rival AXS has the lowest gear ratio at 0.92 using a 46/33T front chainring and 36T rear cog, followed by Shimano (0.94) with 50/34T front chainring and a 36T rear cog.
More reading : Bicycle Gearing Explained

Chains

ComparisonShimano 105 Di2SRAM Rival AXS
ModelCN-M7100CN-RIV-D1
Links116, 126120
Weight254g (116 links)266g
MaterialSteelSteel
Outer plates finishGrayNickel
Inner plates finishSil-TecNickel
Pin designSolidSolid
Price (USD)$43$40
Shimano 105 Di2 vs SRAM Rival AXS chains comparison

Both Shimano 105 and SRAM Rival AXS chains are made from steel and use a solid pin design.

The Shimano 105 chains are available in 116 and 126 links. Sil-Tec treatment is applied to the inner plates for added durability. It’s the same chain as the Shimano SLX mountain bike range.

The SRAM Rival AXS chains are available in only 120 links and have a nickel inner and outer plate finish. It uses a Flattop design which, according to SRAM, is quieter and more durable.

More reading : When to Replace A Bike Chain?

Cassettes

Shimano 105 Di2 vs SRAM Rival AXS Cassettes
Shimano 105 Di2 vs SRAM Rival AXS Cassettes
ComparisonShimano 105 Di2SRAM Rival AXS
ModelCS-R7101-12CS-XG-1250-D1
Size11-34T10-30T, 10-36T
Weight361g283g, 338g
Price$66$132
Shimano 105 Di2 vs SRAM Rival AXS cassettes comparison

The Shimano 105 cassette is officially available in 11-34T. However, a non-105 series cassette (CS-HG710-12) in 11-36T is compatible.

The 105 cassette uses the older Hyperglide (HG) technology vs the newer Hyperglide+ (HG+) on the Ultegra.

  • Hyperglide+ (HG+) is a specific cog tooth profile to match the chain for faster shifting, both up and down the cassette, especially under load.
  • Hyperglide (HG) is similar, but only for shifting to a larger cog.

The SRAM Rival AXS cassette is available in two sizes; 10-30T and 10-36T. The cassette consists of a single block of 12 cogs held together by 123 stainless steel pins.

More reading : SRAM Rival vs Force vs Red AXS Cassettes

Brake rotors

Shimano 105 Di2 vs SRAM Rival AXS Centerlock Rotors
Shimano 105 Di2 vs SRAM Rival AXS Centerlock rotors
ComparisonShimano 105SRAM PacelineSRAM Centerline
Model no.SM-RT70RT-PLN-A1RT-CLX-R-A1
Mount typeCenterlockCenterlock, 6-boltCenterlock, 6-bolt
Weight (140mm)121g137g108g
Weight (160mm)133g157g135g
Price – 140mm (USD)$46$54$113
Price – 160mm (USD)$46$54$113
Shimano 105 Di2 vs SRAM Rival AXS rotors comparison

Shimano 105 and SRAM Rival rotors are available in 140mm and 160mm sizes.

SRAM offers two rotor choices;

  • Paceline. Cheaper but heavier.
  • Centerline. Lighter but 2x more expensive.

Both Paceline and Centerline rotors are available in either Centerlock or 6-bolt. Shimano rotors are only Centerlock.

Shimano used the same brake rotors from their mountain bike lineup, the RT-CL800 (Ultegra) and SM-RT70 (105). Both rotors are available in 140mm and 160mm sizes. 

The difference between the 105 and Ultegra rotors lies in their design and cooling technologies.

More reading : Centerlock vs 6-bolt Disc Brake Rotors

Brake pads

The Shimano 105 comes with Shimano’s latest, fifth-generation organic (resin) brake pads, L05A-RF. Older models such as L03A-RF (organic), L02A-RF (organic), or L04C-MF (metallic) are compatible with the disc brake calipers as they all have the same shape. 

The SRAM Rival AXS comes with an organic brake pad with steel plating. There are other alternatives, such as organic compounds with aluminum plating or metallic compounds with steel plating.

More reading : Resin vs Metal Disc Brake Pads Comparison

Batteries

Shimano introduced a new battery (BT-DN300) for the 12-speed wireless groupsets. There are three ports on the battery, with only two needed for a wireless setup. The third port will be used for a wired setup to connect the shifters via a junction box.

The weighs 52g and has a capacity of 500 mAh. It takes around 1.5 to 2 hours for a full charge and can last for around 2,500 to 3,000km per charge.

SRAM uses one battery each for the front and rear derailleurs. Each battery weighs 24g and can last up to 1,000km per charge for the rear battery, which sees more usage.

The advantage of SRAM is that the batteries are easily interchangeable should any battery run flat. It takes around 60 minutes for a full charge.

More reading : How to Check Shimano Di2 Battery Levels