Pioneer announces revamped power meter

Audio company ditches zip ties, drops price, adds Ultegra option

Pioneer announced an updated version of its Power Meter and a new black-and-white SGX-CA500 Cycle-Computer head unit that graphically displays left and right power at 12 points along the pedal stroke. Besides the name change to 'Power Meter' from 'Pedaling Monitor System,' the Pioneer unit received a needed external hardware overhaul — there are no longer zip ties holding the unit onto the Shimano spider.

Also, there are now Dura-Ace and Ultegra options sold as complete cranksets. When Pioneer first launched the product at Interbike in 2012, the concept was to sell the meter as an add-on to a customer's existing Dura-Ace crank, and a shop would install the strain gauges and other hardware. Now, it's an integrated unit sold with the hardware installed. Suggested retail is now US$1,850 for the Dura-Ace 9000 and US$1,550 for the Ultegra 6800 option.

Also, the new SGX-CA500 Cycle-Computer offers the same functionality as the original, but with a black-and-white interface for US$300. The original head unit is still available as well for US$900.

With strain gauges on both cranks, the Pioneer Power meters measures torque, force location and force angle every 30 degrees around the crank rotation on each arm. This information is presentation on the SGX-CA500 head unit in a few ways, from the standard readouts in watts to the novel graphic representation of where in the stroke each leg is producing power. 

RELATED: Pioneer Pedaling Monitor System long-term review

The Pioneer Power Meter adds a claimed 66g to the Shimano cranks.

Another new feature of the 75g SGX-CA500 head unit is the automatic wireless upload to Pioneer's Cyclo-Sphere online software, when the computer is brought within range of a wireless signal.

Pioneer's Cyclo-Sphere software offers a variety of analysis modules, including the unique 12-point left/right graphic

The Power Meter works on two CR2032 batteries with a claimed battery life of up to 120 hours.

Claimed accuracy is the standard +/- 2 percent, and we found in earlier testing the wattage numbers to be very comparable to a set of Garmin Vectors - which in turn track closely with an SRM.

The Power Meter will come in four Dura-Ace 9000 chainring options (50/34T, 52/36T, 53/39T and 52/38T) and three Ultegra 6800 versions (50/34T, 52/36T and 53/39T) in lengths from 165 to 177.5mm. Not all lengths will be available in all chainring configurations. They will be available in mid-March.

Unsightly zip ties, be gone. The new Power Meter features a cleaner look and a lower price

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