TACX FLUX 2 – Product Review

Shaun George BOTS Guides, Product Launch

Tacx Flux 2 Indoor Trainer is the newest smart trainer on the market in India and we have had the chance to spend some time reviewing this new piece of direct-drive tech! Let’s see how this holds up against other direct drive trainers in the market.

The Tacx Flux 2

The original Flux series was launched way back in 2016 as a “mid-range” direct drive trainer for the masses. The Tacx Flux 2 available in India is the new, improved version.

Read up All about Tacx, a Dutch Cycling Company that is Renowned for its Indoor Trainers.

The Flux 2 is a significant leap forward compared to its predecessor and is among the best trainers in the world. So much so that many Tour De France riders regularly practice on a Flux 2 Trainer.

FLUX 2 INDOOR TRAINER SETUP

Straight out of the box, the Flux 2 doesn’t come fully setup but the simple procedure does not take too much time or technical know-how.

The first thing to do is installing the legs. On the Flux series, the leg is secured by two bolts that affix it to the rest of the trainer. Unlike some trainers, the leg/trainer on the Flux isn’t foldable to save space during storage. On the flip side, the legs are rather burly and very stable – great while putting out some serious watts on the trainer.

The setup process shouldn’t take you more than 1-2 minutes.

Here’s a quick video from Tacx on how to setup a new trainer

Remember – the Flux 2 doesn’t come with a cassette so you’ll probably need to purchase one. Additionally, you’ll also need a cassette lockring removal tool, a chain whip, and an adjustable wrench. If you don’t want to invest in these tools, then you can just take your trainer to your nearest bike shop, and they’ll gladly fix it for you for free.

TOP 3 FEATURES ON THE FLUX 2

The first thing to notice on the Flux 2 compared to previous iterations is the fact that this one can simulate up to 16% grade simulations. This is significantly better than the previous Flux models which sit at about 10%. This will allow you to have a more realistic ride-feel on simulated uphills and will provide a wider range of difficulties to experience.

Another cool feature on the Flux 2 is its heavy flywheel. It uses an electromagnetic resistance unit. Which allows for an inertia simulation of up to 32kgs, despite having only a 7.6kg flywheel. The use of an Electromagnetic Resistance unit means that the Tacx Flux 2 is one of the quietest trainers on the market. Even when riding at a brisk pace, the trainer won’t be making much of a noise. There is a slight whine from the resistance unit, which is barely noticeable over the noise of your bike’s drivetrain.

The Tacx Flux 2 has the same app compatibilities as previous Tacx products that are non-NEO series and essentially follows the industry standards with apps like Zwift, TrainerRoad, SufferFest, Rouvy, Kinomap, and many more. All this makes it easy for you to use whatever app you want right out of the box.

PRODUCT OVERVIEW

In this review, we will be focusing on 8 factors about the Flux 2;

  1. Type of Resistance Unit
  2. Direct Drive vs Wheel-on
  3. Power Accuracy
  4. Connectivity
  5. Compatibility
  6. Portability
  7. Budget

1. RESISTANCE UNIT

The Flux 2 uses an Electromagnetic resistance unit which provides the most accurate and real-like road feel among all types of trainers units. The Tacx come equipped with a range of built-in sensors that will allow you to regulate and calculate almost every aspect of your ride!

Combined with the electromagnetic unit, offers the most comprehensive and diverse trainer experience. It is also the quietest of all trainer types, as resistance is generated using electromagnetic repulsion, which is frictionless and quiet. It is perfect if you’re looking to workout without waking up the entire house, and perhaps your neighbours!

The Flux 2’s Electromagnetic Resistor is Among the Best in the World

2. DIRECT DRIVE VS WHEEL-ON

The Flux 2 is a driect drive trainer, which means that you remove your rear wheel and mount your bike directly on the cassette mounted on the trainer. You place the trainer between the dropouts of your bike and clamp it with a quick release or a thru-axle. 

Direct drive trainers have more to offer than “normal” wheel-on trainers. The advanced technique brings more accuracy, makes the trainer generally more powerful and simulates a more realistic bike feeling. A rear tire will deform and slowly deflate while you train, which will influence your performance during training. An additional advantage of a trainer set-up without a rear tire is that this will make your training much more silent. And because most direct drive trainers are equipped with a built-in power meter, your workout will even get more professional.

Direct drive trainers are the most convenient as they are easier and quicker to set up (if you already have a cassette installed on the trainer).

Direct-Drive trainersWheel-Drive trainers
More realistic
Self-adjust resistance via apps
More accurate
Responds faster
Higher resistance capabilities
Relatively silent
Built-in power meter
More affordable
Weight less
Easy to mount your bike

3. POWER ACCURACY AND WATTAGE

Tacx claims a power accuracy rage of +/- 2.5% which is similar to the Tacx S. A spin-down calibration is highly recommended by Tacx to ensure accuracy while using the trainer.

2000 Watts is the maximum resistance that this unit offers and in our opinion that’s quite sufficient for most riders. Even professional riders hardly hit that end of the resistance spectrum when training.

4. CONNECTIVITY

The Tacx Flux 2 has al basic communication protocols in place – ANT+, FE-C & Bluetooth Smart, as well as allowing interactive resistance control across both ANT+ & Bluetooth Smart.

By applying resistance control, apps can simulate climbs as well as set specific wattage targets for your training. You can also connect to any device you want to. Be it a bike computer or watch, or an app – it’ll be supported.

Therefore, the Tacx Flux 2 is one of the most immersive and accurate trainers for virtual ride simulation on apps like Zwift. That means that the range of difficulties and change in resistance will be the most accurate as compared to other types of trainers.

Discover the Tacx Flux 2

5. COMPATIBILITY

In terms of bike compatibility, again, there’s nothing to worry about. Once you’ve got a cassette on, simply put in place either the quick release or thru-axle adapter (depending on your particular bike). The unit includes a thru-axle adapter set for 142x12mm & 148x12mm. As with most of the more affordable smart trainers in the market currently, there’s no cassette in the box, but Shimano and SRAM 8- to 11-speed cassettes fit directly. At the same time, a Campagnolo body is sold separately.

The Tacx Flux 2 is a Direct Drive Trainer

MTB 135mm axles, 142mm, 148mm, are also supported, and there’s an adaptor available for 135 x 10mm. You can be assured that pretty much any bike (24-inch, 650c, 700c; 24-inch, 650b, and 29er) will fit onto the Tacx 2 without a hassle.

Note that you do need a power source to get resistance variability from the trainer.

6. PORTABILITY

At 21kgs. The Flux 2 isn’t exactly “light”. It can be moved around single-handedly but then again, how often are you going to move around your indoor trainer? Usually, with trainers, weight isn’t as much of a consideration as the centre of gravity is. A more balanced trainer will be easier to lug around than a disproportional one.

The heaviness of the trainer actually leads to a better experience while your riding on the trainer as it ensures a steady platform as your power-up during your drills.

Heavy to Lift, but Smoother to Ride!

The other factor limiting the Flux’s portability is it’s fixed legs. They are fixed on by two mounting points. Unlike some other trainers, the legs on these Tacx trainers don’t fold in. It’s not something we consider a downside because indoor trainers are hardly ever moved from one location to the other.

It’s also worth noting that the Flux 2 does not offer resistance control when it’s not plugged in. Therefore they require a constant external power supply to use this trainer. This means that you cannot take this out for pre-race warmups when you are out at about.

7. BUDGET

The Flux 2 is one of the best trainers available on the market and is used by some of the world’s best professional cyclists. Its premium components and top of the line technology put it on the higher end of the price spectrum. It can be argued that it costs as much as a brand new bike. Still, it is sure to completely revolutionize your riding experience, unlocking the world of virtual cycling, and performance tracking, unlike anything you have ever seen before.

Therefore, if you want to immerse yourself in all that indoor trainers have to offer, it is worth every rupee!

SUMMARY OF SPECIFICATIONS

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


Overall, a good brand offering a very good product – the Tacx Flux 2 is one of the better trainers in the Indian market with a high level of rider support in case there are any issues with the trainer. While most trainers are bombproof, we consider support an important aspect of an indoor trainer purchase.

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