Thanks to a fairly large negative chamber and a low friction bladder-sealed damper, the DVO Topaz had the lowest breakaway force on test and felt ridiculously supple throughout its stroke, offering up superb traction and comfort.
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Clip-in volume spacers mean it’s easy to dial in the progression without need to remove the shock from the bike, although we had to use all five provided with the shock to get the required ramp up.
Aggressive riders with linear bikes will want to add even more and we felt we could have done with a slightly firmer open-mode damping tune at times too.
The intermediate compression mode is great for pedal and pump descents though, and the firmest restricts bob yet still allows the shock to open up nicely when you hit a bump on a climb.
Despite the reservoir’s ‘cooling fins’, heat did affect rebound speed towards the end of long downhill runs, but no more than most of its peers.
Being picky, we’d like more spacers in the box and firmer damping options for really hard riders, but excellent tracking sensitivity offers superb performance for most.