Avid XX disc brake £300

Cross-country race stoppers

BikeRadar score 2/5

The XX is based on the Elixir CR Mag platform, using a two-piece magnesium calliper, master cylinder and a carbon fibre lever plus titanium hardware. The relatively heavy alloy-centred floating rotor and 3D-adjustable cup-and-cone washer setup mean it’s not quite the lightest, although the 160mm version scrapes in under the 200g mark.

The flip-flop lever design makes cockpit tuning easy, as do the Matchmaker combined shifter clamps that can also mount XX fork lockout switches. Power and control on the trail and the dyno is impressive for the weight but flex in the master cylinder body gives it a squeezy feel that reduces the brake’s perceived power.

The 3D movement at the calliper end makes it awkward to line up. Most sets that we’ve used have been plagued with continual sudden pulling-to-the-bar problems despite countless patience-stretching, multi-phase bleeding sessions.

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