Genetic's Syngenic pedals might well be faithful copies of Look’s justly popular ARC design but nice detailing and great build quality distinguishes them from a sea of clones. True, some may baulk at the relatively steep (20mm) axle to sole measurement and the KEO type just pip them to the post when it comes to power transfer but they’re fantastic starter pedals if you are either new to single sided road pedals or want some dependable starter kit for a stab at racing. They're also more than a match for salty winter roads thanks to super smooth sealed bearings and dependable Cro-moly axles so are a good winter trainer or even commuting option too.
Emerging from their box, futuristic graphics and sharp angular styling complement the timeless gunmetal livery perfectly. Gold axles stop short just the ride side of looking gaudy. Smooth, sealed needle/cartridge bearings should stay that way for many seasons but servicing looks straightforward when the time comes. Because they are made from magnesium the Syngenics enjoy an obvious weight advantage and those new to road pedals will doubtless appreciate the wider surface area which doesn’t present clearance problems-even with aggressive cornering. However, there’s a slight trade off in rigidity-detectable when breaking away at the lights or climbing powerfully out of the saddle, though we're by no means in blamanche territory.
Release tension is easily adjusted and so long as you treat the springs to the periodic drop of oil, entry and exit seem first time affairs-even with the knee friendly cleats supplied. Finish is what you’d expect at this end of the market, far from bargain basement but vulnerable to cleat wear. Credit where it’s due, they haven’t flaked, peeled or broken out in a blizzard of corrosion despite regular and prolonged exposure to the salt monster. Those with deeper pockets can have titanium axles, shaving £60 from the wallet and 50g from the bike but in my opinion, these are the better buy.
Ideal choice as a first road or race pedal and particularly good for training bikes too
road.cc test report
Make and model: Genetic Syngenic pedals
Size tested: N/A
Tell us what the product is for, and who it's aimed at. What do the manufacturers say about it? How does that compare to your own feelings about it?
These are faithful copies of Look's ARC pattern aimed at racers but they're good solid winter companions and keenly priced so as to appeal to road/racing newcomers
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
Cast magnesium bodies, cro-moly or ti axles, sealed cartridge/needle roller bearings. Gun-metal finish, supplied with 9degree red ARC pattern cleats.
Generally very good.
299g (pair) Cro-Moly as tested
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
There's little to complain about here, bearigs are well sealed and super smooth, generous profiles mean day long comfort without detracting from cornering prowess and easily adjusted tension makes for dependable, snappy entry/exit.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
Nice detailing, solid build quality and timeless feel.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
Nothing, although painted finish could've been slighty tougher and heavier riders might notice Magnesium's greater flexibility.
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes
Would you consider buying the product? Yes
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes
Anything further to say about the product in conclusion?
If I could give an extra half mark these would get it
About the tester
Age: 36 Height: 1m 81 Weight: 70 kilos
I usually ride: Rough Stuff Tourer Based around 4130 Univega mtb Frameset My best bike is: 1955 Holdsworth Road Path and several others including cross & traditional road
I've been riding for: Over 20 years I ride: Most days I would class myself as: Experienced
I regularly do the following types of riding: cyclo cross, commuting, touring, fixed/singlespeed, mtb,
Shaun Audane is a freelance writer/product tester with over twenty-eight years riding experience, the last twelve (120,000 miles) spent putting bikes and kit through their paces for a variety of publications. Previous generations of his family worked at manufacturing's sharp end, thus Shaun can weld, has a sound understanding of frame building practice and a preference for steel or titanium framesets.
Citing Richard Ballantine and an Au pair as his earliest cycling influences, he is presently writing a cycling book with particular focus upon women, families and disabled audiences (Having been a registered care manager and coached children at Herne Hill Velodrome in earlier careers)