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So having read the less than fulsome reviews I decided to take a punt on the Atom. 

And first weekend has been underwhelming but not entirely unexpected. 

  • It’s a solid piece of kit 
  • The Wattbike hub app is good
  • The connections to the bike and the shifters are distinctly iffy and do not connect terribly reliably 
  • Erg feel is good and wattbike-like as long as you are pedalling smoothly
  • Bike feel is dreadful - it’s not smooth the gear changing is ok and lag issues appear to have been cured; however, resistance is futile (!) if you are not peddling smoothly - it shifts unexpectedly and resets without warning. Not clear why the software does not lock the resistance in gear mode
  • A symptom of this resistance issue is standing up just does not work - it jerks and smooth stand-up peddling is not possible - Wattbike make much of the fact that effective up hill peddling is best sitting down at good cadence but sometimes you just want to mash the gears.  
  • Zwifting is a mess. The gear shifting is not sorted. Not entirely clear who’s fault this is but the 4th gear display stick is still an issue and the inability to grind up a hill out of the saddle just is not possible

Overall feels that it could offer the ultimatum static bike experience but the software still needs some tweaks to get this feeling more like a bike and less like an erg with a bit of bike functionality. It’s a very poorly executed product from a company with a peerless reputation who had an open goal to shoot at in relation to standalone bike specific in door training and punted it straight over the bar.   Deserves to fail  

Apologies is all of above covered but many reviews seem to end earlier this year and many issues still there!

UPDATE: it’s a dreadful waste of money  - Wattbike should be ashamed - it just does nothing it should do. Being returned for refund  

 

2 comments

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CXR94Di2 [2732 posts] 3 months ago
2 likes

You're being rather generous.  Its rubbish for the money.  Tacx AFAIK havent released their much advertised bike.   The issue is trying to make the software driven gear changes feel like a real bike.  

Its so much easier to get the feel with a decent turbo, bike and rocker board.   

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Will_wiggle [1 post] 3 months ago
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On the verge of returning it!  It’s a shambolic experience. The most damning evidence comes from Wattbike itself. There is a support article with instructions on how to ride on Zwift - you have to contort your cycling style to suit their machine rather than just ride the thing like a bike.