TACX INDOOR TRAINERS – BUYING GUIDE

Shaun George BOTS Guides, Reviews

Tacx, a privately owned Dutch manufacturer is one of the biggest sellers of trainers, water bottles, and tools across the globe.

Best known for its innovative line of indoor smart trainers, including the highly-regarded Tacx NEO 2 and the revolutionary NEO Bike, that’s used by professional athletes all over the world.

Tacx trainers allow cyclists to experience lifelike conditions, indoors. For the most interactive and immersive indoor experience, the super-popular Tacx smart trainers connect wirelessly to popular training apps to help cyclists get more from their workouts, as well as the Tacx training app that offers training plans, data analysis, and films of scenery all over the globe for the most immersive feel possible.

WHY TACX TRAINERS?

Most good-quality trainers cost a bundle – when investing your hard-earned money on a trainer, why not buy from the best?

Tacx is a highly respected name in the indoor trainer industry, and it’s something that’s been proven with a cult-like following all around the world by all kinds of athletes – from the top athletes out there to regular weekend warriors keen to expand and improve upon their passion for cycling.

The company started off as a small local bike shop and manufacturer of rollers that has now developed into a worldwide brand.

But their core principle remains the same

  1. Their love for cycling inspires them to deliver the best by being highly involved in the sport
  2. Invent the Future – keep pushing limits of what is technically possible to create ground-breaking products with state-of-the-art designs
  3. Since 1957 – tons of experience in building the best
  4. Made in the Netherlands – practically everything is designed and manufactured in-house
  5. Choice of Champions – Tacx partner with many of the World Tour teams, Pro-continental teams, Continental teams, Women teams, triathletes, ice-skaters, cyclocross, and MTB teams

The company currently manufactures some four million bottles, 100,000 indoor trainers, 50,000 tools and 40,000 work stands in the Tacx factory every year. It’s a vast operation that combines Dutch design with 21st Century manufacturing processes.

They’ve completely dominated the smart trainer market with stiff competition from another popular brand Wahoo.

TECHNOLOGY AT TACX

1. FLYWHEEL

The heart of a trainer – the flywheel is resonsible for how you feel on the bike. The realism, the ride feel, and the resistance – all thanks to the well engineered flywheels made by Tacx.

Tacx trainers are equipped with a virtual flywheel. The best experience is achieved with an exact simulation of the rider’s weight, which is only possible with a virtual flywheel. The trainer simulates the mass inertia instead of producing it with an actual flywheel. 

Trainers equipped with Tacx’s virtual flywheels are the NEO Smart and Genius model series.

2. CONNECTIVITY

Why have a “dumb” trainer in the smart digital age? Tacx trainers enable you to connect the trainer to your desired device and receive performance data. All these key data are transmitted via ANT+ and/or Bluetooth. Once connected, you can use smart training apps such as Zwift and Trainer Road.

3. WIRELESS USABILITY

One of the best most versatile features on some Tacx trainers is the Plug in/plug out technology that basically enable you to use your Tacx trainer without a plug, it functions like a wireless motor brake.

The motor and electronics are set to generate energy from your movement, enabling the trainer to communicate with apps and control the resistance unit. You will have to keep cycling to maintain the communication and control of the trainer.

4. ROAD FEEL

An absolute flagship feature reserved only for the Tacx NEO currently is surface simulation. That right! Be it cobblestone, mud, grass, taramc, etc. The Tacx Neo can simulate it all.

Feel the road’s vibrations just like you would outdoors. Each road has certain imperfections causing vibrations in your bike. Therefore, when you ride on cobbles in the software, you will feel it in your legs.

Do read our “INDOOR BICYCLE TRAINERS – BUYERS GUIDE” to get a good understanding of what to look out for while buying a good Indoor Trainer.

PRODUCT LINEUP

While the range is quite big, we have 5 main products available in the Indian Market.

  1. Tacx Neo2 Indoor Trainer
  2. Tacx Flux 2 Smart Indoor Trainer
  3. Tacx Flux S Smart Indoor Trainer
  4. Galaxia Roller
  5. Antares Roller

1. TACX NEO 2 INDOOR TRAINER

Not to be biassed but we think this is one kickass trainer as it does pretty much everything you could ask for! All for a “reasonable price”. We say reasonable because it is, by high-end smart trainer standards. The Tacx Neo 2 is honestly over specced. There’s so much on offer that you may even forget some of its features.

For starters, the massive flywheel. Remember the virtual flywheel we mentioned above? Tacx has used that technology to provide the rider with a whooping 125kg flywheel (virtual). For comparison, the closest competitor has a 7.25kg flywheel. That’s MASSIVE!

2,200 Watts of maximum power simulation is more than anyone will ever need. Plus, it’s also incredibly accurate – even while putting down some serous power on sprints.

Do check out DC Rainmakers detailed review on the Tacx Neo 2

Weight: 21.4kg
Accuracy: +/- 1%
Connectivity: ANT+ FE-C, ANT+ Power, Bluetooth
Max Resistance: 2200 Watts
Max gradient simulation: 25%
Flywheel: 125kg
Thru-axle compatible:
Yes

2. TACX FLUX 2 SMART INDOOR TRAINER

The Flux first came out somewhere around 2018 and did pretty well. Later in 2019 the Flux 2 smart was launched – it was quieter, better feeling, and had all the essential smart trainer features that you’d want.

Thanks to the big 7.6kg flywheel providing good inertia feel, riding on the Flux 2 Smart is always a pleasure. It’s as accurate as Tacx claims and that’s good enough for most average folk. There were some issues with accuracy in EGR mode in earlier models but that has now been fixed by Tacx through a software update.

It now puts up stiff competition for the new Wahoo Kickr Core. Both trainers fall in a similar price bracket and offer similar features. The Core is known to have a better ride feel. Without foldable legs, the Flux 2 Smart isn’t the easiest to store when not in use but that’s a minor setback we’re willing to overlook.

Weight: 21.3kg
Accuracy: +/- 2.5%
Connectivity: ANT+ FE-C, Smart Bluetooth, and FTMS
Max Resistance: 2000 Watts
Max gradient simulation: 16%
Flywheel: 7.6kg
Thru-axle compatible:
Yes

3. TACX FLUX S SMART INDOOR TRAINER

Looks the same as the Tacx Flux 2 Smart? Well, they are quite similar and look alike. The Flux S Smart is the cheaper alternative but there’s not much compromise between the two.

What’s cool here is that the 6.7kg flywheel actually simulates a 25kg flywheel thanks to Tacx’s virtual flywheel technology. The maximum 10% climb gradient is a bit on the lower side when compared to its rivals.

The Flux S Smart gives a life-like ride that compares well to trainers costing double the price. Tacx has done a good job of filtering down technology from its top-end trainer. A good example of trickle-down technology.

Weight: 21.3kg
Accuracy: +/- 3%
Connectivity: ANT+ FE-C, ANT+, Bluetooth
Max Resistance: 1500Watts
Max gradient simulation: 10%
Flywheel: 6.7kg
Thru-axle compatible:
Yes

4. TACX GALAXIA ROLLER

The most notable feature of the Galaxia roller is the suspended chassis, which balances on rockers beneath the twin rear drums rather than on static rubber feet that you usually see on rollers such as these. The benefit of the design is increased stability, which will be most apparent during out of the saddle efforts.

It is on the noisier side but that’s something you have to expect when it comes to entry-level rollers. There are no technological gizmos here. Simple rollers, ideal for warmups. It was pleasant to see a robust chassis, the bearings were silky smooth, and the rollers, well, rolled smoothly.

Weight: 8.2kg
Accuracy: Na
Connectivity: Na
Max Resistance: Na
Max gradient simulation: Na
Flywheel: Na
Thru-axle compatible:
Na

5. TACX ANTARES ROLLER

Simplicity at it’s best. Even less complicated than the Galaxia rollers. There’s many advantages to this kind of simplicty, ease of use and portability being the most significant ones.

The height of the sky blue rollers and lack of steps makes getting on a bit of a challenge but they’re not as slippery as metal rollers. The rollers are really smooth too so it’s quite a fun experience. Great for a beginner rider.

Assembly of the Tacx Antares roller is simple, and the compact and light telescopic design makes it very easy to store and carry around. We feel that that’s one of the biggest advantages with the Tacx Antares – you can carry it with you everywhere.

Weight: 7.7kg
Accuracy: Na
Connectivity: Na
Max Resistance: Na
Max gradient simulation: Na
Flywheel: Na
Thru-axle compatible:
Na

There you go! We’re uber stoked to stock and have our riders riding one of the best indoor trainer brands in the world.

Keen to know more or have any of your indoor training queries sorted? Don’t hesitate to reach out to our rider support team.

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