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Great point re. handlebar real-estate Michael.
My wife’s bikes both have Shimano brakes from one generation ago (one XT masters || one XTR Trail masters) that are still in great shape. We generally don’t fix what ain’t broke.
I wanted to improve the feel and power curve without spending the money on replacements so I put on Zee calipers (one’s actually an older M810 Saint but basically same thing) up front a few years ago. Huge improvement in every metric except weight.
This is what Shimano is doing with the new XT brake.
One of my buddies just picked up some old Saint M810 brakes lightly used, tossed the ‘meh’ levers, and put the calipers on the front of his M8000 XT brakes on both his bikes w/ rave results. Definitely worth keeping you heads up for Zee or Saint M810/M820 calipers for the right price.
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