Shimano Deore XT M785 crankset£159.99

Still one of the best

BikeRadar score3.5/5

It’s had a lot of its cost-effective thunder stolen by SLX, but Shimano’s XT crankset is still a great way to turn the chain on any bike.

The smoothly sculpted four-arm spider and forged Hollowtech II crank arms are similar to SLX’s but have a slightly more fluid shape. You get a hard-anodised alloy – rather than steel – inner ring too, which contributes to a 24g weight saving. The benchmark shifting performance from the precision-formed pocketed and shaped outer ring with reinforced steel pins is identical though, and you get the same BB70 external bottom bracket.

The black arms can look tired after just a single ride (it’s available in silver too). There’s no BB30 or single ring option, though aftermarket BB adaptors and rings are available.

Guy Kesteven

Freelance Writer, UK
Guy started filling his brain with cycle stats and steaming up bike shop windows back in 1980. He worked the other side of those windows from '89 while getting a degree in “describing broken things covered in mud" (archaeology). Dug historical holes in the ground through the early '90s, then became a pro bike tester in '97. Guy has ridden thousands of bikes and even more components the world over since then and can remember them all in vivid, haunting detail. Can't remember where the car keys are, though.
  • Age: 44
  • Height: 180cm / 5' 11"
  • Weight: 68kg / 150lb
  • Waist: 76cm / 30in
  • Chest: 91cm / 36in
  • Discipline: Strict sadomasochist
  • Preferred Terrain: Technical off-piste singletrack and twisted back roads. Up, down, along — so long as it's faster tfhan the last time he did it he's happy.
  • Current Bikes: An ever changing herd of test machines from Tri bikes to fat bikes and everything in between.
  • Dream Bike: His Nicolai Helius AM custom tandem
  • Beer of Choice: Theakston's Old Peculier (not Peculiar)
  • Location: Yorkshire, UK

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