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Shimano Trickles Down 11-46, Boost

Date Feb 21, 2017

It was only a matter of time before Shimano released updated versions of a number of their products, and their announcement today brought a number of notable changes across multiple groupsets.

The first of the news from Shimano is the introduction of Boost hubs on their XT wheelsets. The new wheels will be both front (110 x 15mm) and rear (148 x 12mm) Boost-compatible and laced to either a 27.5 or 29″ hoop. Rim widths measure 23.9mm external/20mm internal for the 8000-series “Race” version, and 27.9mm external/24mm internal for the 8020-series “Trail” version.

Shimano Boost

Top: The Shimano XT 8000 Race wheelset. Bottom: Shimano XT 8020 Trail wheelset.

Expect to see the 29″ wheels in your local bike shop in May of 2017, with the 27.5 version coming in June. Pricing for the pair is 549.99 USD, for all versions and sizes.

Further down the component line, the SLX groupset gets a new 11-46 tooth 11-speed cassette. Riders who go through their rear cogs quickly will be happy to hear that the cassette will retail for $74.99 USD, and will be available starting in May.

Shimano Boost

Shimano’s new 11-46t SLX Cassette. Good news for anyone that doesn’t want to pay an arm and a leg for a consumable.

Finally, the Deore groupset sees a number of aesthetic changes to match with the rest of Shimano’s lineup. It’s still only 2×10, but a new 11-42 tooth cassette means riders still holding onto their 10-speed setup will have another option when their current kit wears out. Also new in the Deore lineup is the PD-ED500, which brings an updated version of Shimano’s SPD pedal to the Deore level. Like everything else, expect to see it go live in May.

Shimano Boost

The New Deore M6000 lineup. Still no 1×11 option, but there’s a wide range 11-42t cassette at least.

Below is the full release from Shimano, with more details about their new Deore 6000 lineup.

DEORE M6000 series

Designed around the concept of performance and recreation, new Deore M6000 is for trail riders and MTB enthusiasts, MTB commuters and outdoor recreational riders who need daily durability to cope with rough roads, rain, sand and the worst that nature can throw at you.

Deore M6000 remains as a 10-speed groupset but with some innovative features for confident, smooth, flexible riding with limitless possibilities.

The 2×10 drivetrain (FC-M6000) adopts the family look of XTR, XT and SLX drivetrains with a sleek four-arm Hollowtech II one-piece composite design in 3 size options (38-28T, 36-26T, 34-24T) and an alternative 3mm outboard Boost version.

Meanwhile the 3×10 drivetrain takes on a unique, aggressive look offering 40-30-22T for a wide range of riding styles. Both drivetrains combine with a new wider range 11-42T 10-speed Dyna-Sys cassette (CS-HG500) as well as three other 11-36/34/32T cassette options.

2×10 and 3×10-speed gear changes are handled by a Shadow RD+ derailleur in the rear (RD-M6000-GS) offering improved chain stability and retention. Up front, three derailleur swing options (top, down and side) can be combined with five types of mount options (high, low, direct mount, e-type and a new mid-type) to offer cable routing and/or satisfy new manufacturing requirements such as rear suspension or tire clearance.

Shifting operation comes from Rapidfire Plus shift levers (SL-M6000) with a visual display for gear choice. Control also comes from new hydraulic brakes with Servo wave high power levers (BL-M6000) and heat insulated calipers (BR-M6000) designed to accommodate Ice Technologies brake pads.

Hub sets (HB-M6000/10, FH-M6000/10) complete the group with a 100 x 15mm E-Thru axle option at the front and centre-lock mounts for easy rotor installation.

Non-series MTB additions

Wheel lineups are expanded with two new 29” and 27.5” Deore XT B-spec wider e-thru O.L.D. options. Now with a 110 x 15mm e-thru front and 148 x 12mm rear-axle Boost specification, the new wheelsets increase stiffness. New rear e-thru axles (AX-MT700 and AX-MT500) are also added with smaller housing, lighter weight and greater clearance for frame and brake calipers.

In terms of drivetrains, designed at SLX level is a new wide range 11-46T cassette (CS-M7000) for 1×11 set-ups. At a similar grade to the new Deore group comes a new 2×11 two-piece 36-26T front crankset (FC-MT600) with abrasion-resisting teeth and Dyna-Sys shifting in Boost and Standard dimensions, as well as a new closer step 2×10 FC-MT500 36-26T front crankset (FC-MT500). Combined with the FC-MT500 crankset is a hydraulic disc brake set (BR-MT500) offering a non-series version of the Deore BR-M6000 hydraulic brakes. New pedals (PD-ED500) offer a Deore-grade double-sided light action SPD model.

Champagne styling on a PBR budget sounds appealing, but the lack of 1×11 at the Deore price point is still a bit of a head-scratcher. Perhaps they’re saving something for Sea Otter?


Luix  - Feb. 22, 2017, 3:10 a.m.

Screw that "Rhythm System" mumbo-jumbo. The teeth count on the SLX 11-46 and XT 11-46 cassettes is ridonkolous, especially in the lower gears. I got a SunRace MX8 instead, and the shifting quality hasn't suffered when compared to my former M8000 11-42.


J Legbacon  - Feb. 22, 2017, 5:45 a.m.

37 to 46 jump, no thanks. Sunrace and Box have better options. Good to see trickle down but the cassette needs work.


Luix  - Feb. 22, 2017, 5:48 a.m.

Well, the BOX one is just a rebranded Sunrace MX8 after all.

Dirk  - Feb. 22, 2017, 9:04 a.m.

Yes…it does look a little bit mega-rangey.

VonP  - Feb. 22, 2017, 5:52 a.m.

good to see these replies. i just yanked off the Shimano cassette last night and put on a Sunrace, but haven't pedalled it yet…


Luix  - Feb. 22, 2017, 6:04 a.m.

I've used it for about two weeks now, so this isn't going to be a long-term review. So far, it upshifts maybe a tad slower when compared to the Shimano XT 11-42 it replaced, but the dowshifts are on par with its predecessor. With my current setup (X1 RD, X1 chain), I only had to add a couple of chain links and drive the B tension screw in a few turns, the upper and lower limit screws remained untouched.

The bummer part comes from chain falling from the 46t if I backpedal more than a quarter of a turn, but that also happened with the XT, so I blame it on my chain line. I might try placing a half-width spacer between the BB and the shell on each side instead of having a single one on the drive side.
Cam McRae  - Feb. 22, 2017, 8:28 a.m.

Do you mean downshifts or upshifts are on par?

Luix  - Feb. 22, 2017, 8:35 a.m.

Upshifts=shifting into a smaller cog. Downshifts=shifting into a bigger one. I haven't had any issues downshifting, but shifting into a smaller cog feels a bit slower when compared back-to-back to my previous Shimano XT 11-42.
Cam McRae  - Feb. 22, 2017, 9:08 a.m.


I know which is which, but many mix them up. And it seemed unusual that the easier shift - upshift which is aided by gravity - is slower.

Luix  - Feb. 22, 2017, 9:13 a.m.

I've got to admit I hesitated a bit before writing my first comment ;-). I blame the slower upshifts on the less refined ramps. Shimano has a clear advantage here, and even minimal differences in tooth profiles make a great performance gain.

But then again, I'm being too picky. In a nutshell, would I recommend this cassette? YES!

WNCmotard  - Feb. 22, 2017, 1:37 p.m.

Good to hear, about to pull the trigger on one for my Stache.

spam spam  - March 17, 2017, 10:09 p.m.




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