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Feb. 16, 2021, 1:09 p.m. -  Andrew Major

It may be that there is a dearth of content - particularly tech content - catered towards the mountain bike "newbie." Maybe it's something NSMB should look into? For the record, I'm certainly not attempting to cover that niche. In my experiences when it comes to bike parts riders fall into three categories. 1) folks who are going to pay the shop to do anything and just want a bike that works great. 2) folks that are going to work on their own stuff but stay within systems (SHI-12, Eagle, etc) or even specific groupsets (GX, XT) to ensure compatibility. 3) folks that are going to work on their own stuff who are either going to do the research or burn the capital to figure out what's inter-compatible. Of those riders only category \#3 needs to know that Shimano 12-speed chains/rings are specific to each other which is information that's easy to find for folks that don't immediately extrapolate it from the fact that companies are making specific SHI-12 chainrings. It's also pretty apparent if you try to put a non-SHI-12 chain on a SHI-12 ring regardless of the brand. That said, I much lament the demise of the HG driver and the way we're voting with our wallets today to pay higher prices tomorrow. That's thanks to a proliferation of standards and the lack of aftermarket cassette options for XD and MS that are removing any downward cost pressure on SRAM and Shimano. If you're at all interested I did write [**a short piece**](https://meatengines.com/f/micro-spline-xd-the-dual-despotic-demise-of-the-hg-freehub) about it.

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