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Verdict: 
Proves you don't have to spend a fortune to get a top performing wheelset
Weight: 
1,723g

If you're looking to inject a bit of performance into your ride without breaking the bank, the Syntium AXY wheelset from Italian component manufacturer Miche would be a good place to start. These wheels offer stiffness, a decent build quality and a respectable weight.

We've tested a few pairs of Miche wheels over the last 12 months or so, and they've always impressed, so it's no surprise that the Syntiums continue the trend.

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They are quite traditional in relation to the changes we're seeing in wheel design at the moment, with an internal rim width of just 15mm and a shallow 24mm rim depth. Something that is getting rarer with the fashion for wider and deeper.

Miche Syntium wheelset - rim bed

They certainly don't suffer for it, though – even fitted with 23mm tyres pumped up to 120psi they were far from punishing. In fact the ride was very smooth, even on rough patches of tarmac, probably the shallow rim coming into play, as you tend to find the deeper the profile, the harsher they become.

Weighing in at 1586g (no rim tape or skewers), they are just 32g heavier than the recently tested Mavic Ksyrium Elites and the ride difference between the two is barely discernible, impressive considering the Syntiums are £200 cheaper.

Thanks to that weight, acceleration is pretty brisk and you certainly notice the benefits in the hills. Plus, thanks to the low rim depth, the handling isn't affected by strong crosswinds.

Miche Syntium wheelset - rim

The stiffness is what has impressed me the most, though. You can really whack the power through the Miches without any lateral movement at the rim. To aid this, Miche has created an asymmetric (off-centre) rim for the rear wheel. Because of the width of an 11-speed hub, rear wheels can end up with virtually no dishing on the drive side and loads on the non-drive side, leading to an imbalance in spoke tension. By moving the nipple holes off-centre towards the non-drive side, you reduce that imbalance, making for a stronger wheel.

Miche Syntium wheelset - rear hub 2

The Syntiums use Sapim aero spokes, with 18 laced radially on the front and 24 on the rear, radial on the non-drive with a two-cross pattern on the drive side. These are then attached to the rim using alloy nipples. They certainly look cool anodised red, but if you use them in salty conditions make sure you keep them clean as with previous experience I have had them corrode and fail.

Miche Syntium wheelset - spoke

The hubs are Miche's own. They have an aluminium alloy body that is precision CNC machined for a tight tolerance before being fitted with SKF sealed bearings. They've seen plenty of rain soaked, mud and grit-strewn country lanes without bother, so longevity shouldn't be an issue.

Miche Syntium wheelset - front hub

The hubs are easy to strip down as well. We were supplied with both a Shimano/SRAM and a Campagnolo freehub, with the changeover being a 10-minute job.

Miche Syntium wheelset - rear hub

Overall, the Syntium AXYs are very impressive wheels and would make a great upgrade, with all-round durability and performance high up on the score card. They also look the business, too, with their red/white/grey logos and matching anodised nipples.

Verdict

Proves you don't have to spend a fortune to get a top performing wheelset

If you're thinking of buying this product using a cashback deal why not use the road.cc Top Cashback page and get some top cashback while helping to support your favourite independent cycling website

road.cc test report

Make and model: Miche Syntium AXY

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?

Miche says: "The Syntium AXY wheels are distinguished by their high rigidity and a particulary low weight, charachteristics that make them suitable, and sought after, for a professional competititve use."

Fair enough I reckon, the Miches are certainly fast enough to race on, stiff enough too.

Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?

Rim: Aluminium Erto 622-15C

Hubs: CNC machined AL 7075-T6

Bearings: Sealed SKF

Compatibility: Shimano/SRAM 10-11spd or Campagnolo 10-11spd

Spokes: Sapim Aero 18F 24R

Nipples: Sapim AL 7075-T6

Rate the product for quality of construction:
 
8/10
Rate the product for performance:
 
8/10
Rate the product for durability:
 
8/10
Rate the product for weight, if applicable:
 
8/10
Rate the product for comfort, if applicable:
 
8/10
Rate the product for value:
 
8/10

Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose

Excellent all-round wheels that suit a multitude of disciplines.

Tell us what you particularly liked about the product

The price, considering the weight and quality.

Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product

Alloy nipples aren't ideal for year-round use.

Did you enjoy using the product? Yes

Would you consider buying the product? Yes

Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes

Use this box to explain your score

A solid scoring wheelset from Miche that delivers well across the board. The build quality is good with what feels like even spoke tension, and they remained true through to the end of the test period. An impressive weight means they are quick enough for racing, all topped off with a very attractive price.

Overall rating: 8/10

About the tester

Age: 37  Height: 180cm  Weight: 76kg

I usually ride: Kinesis T2  My best bike is: Mason Definition

I've been riding for: 10-20 years  I ride: Every day  I would class myself as: Expert

I regularly do the following types of riding: time trialling, commuting, club rides, sportives, fixed/singlespeed

Stu knocked out his first road.cc review back in 2009 and since then he's chucked the best part of seventy test bikes around the West Country, a couple of them quite literally! With three alloy and two steel bikes in his fleet he's definitely a metal man (that'll be the engineering background) but is slowly warming to that modern carbon fibre stuff along with fat tyres & disc brakes.
It's not all nostalgia though, after spending the last few years in product design Stu keeps banging on about how 3D printing is going to be the next big thing and he's a sucker for a beautiful paint job too.

8 comments

Avatar
RichmondDenton [15 posts] 3 years ago
2 likes

I bought  a pair of these last year, and rode through the whole winter with them. They're still perfect as they go into their second winter. For the money they are superb wheels, and I echo everything the reviewer says. Even the alloy nipples haven't been a problem, although I clean my bikes regularly through the winter.

Miche are a company that flies under the radar, despite making quality equipment. As a result of buying the Syntium's, I  went on to buy a pair of the Miche SWR carbon clincher wheels. These too are a superb wheelset.

Avatar
Vejnemojnen [289 posts] 3 years ago
0 likes

Am I missing something? Zondas are cheaper, lighter and stiffer...  and they come with brass nipples.  1

 

https://www.bike-components.de/en/Campagnolo/Zonda-Laufradsatz-p32020/

 

stiffness values measured by german roadbike.de magazine and even tour magazine. Super stiff and there are some variants (2010) which weigh below 1540 grams..

 

http://www.testberichte.de/p/campagnolo-tests/zonda-testbericht.html

 

 

Avatar
IanW1968 [368 posts] 3 years ago
0 likes

Zondas are good but cup and cone which some dont like, these look like another option at a similar price point (once the inevitable discount is applied). 

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edster99 [345 posts] 3 years ago
0 likes

I've got a set of syntium tubulars (pretty much identical except lighter, obviously)  and i've been really pleased with them.  Miche make some pretty decent kit.

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Vinerman [64 posts] 3 years ago
0 likes

Miche wheels[and products in general] user since 2008 and never looked back or bought anything else.

the syntium is very, very good set of wheels for training and racing. practically maintaince free, smooth, light and very well-made.

Highly recommended.

 

Avatar
VeloSolutions [6 posts] 3 years ago
0 likes

Zonda's have cup and cone bearings, the Miche hub is really another notch or two up the quality ladder compared to the Zonda's.  The free hub body is really smooth and does not make a racket as soon as you freewheel!

I have been running Miche Syntiums since 2009 as my main road wheelset, on my 2nd set now, the HS version, they have over 30k on the clock and are running as good as good today as the day I brought them, amazing quality. I used to use Fulcrum Zeros as my main road wheels, even if they are a bit lighter than the Syntiums I found them to be uncomfortable and offer very little road feel compared to the Syntiums, no doubt due to the fat oversize spokes of the Zero's.  However, I find the Syntiums as just as fast/responsive as the Zero's

I also really appreciated the spares service when I changed from Campy to Shimano, got a brand new hub body for only £30 which included the main hub body bearings and freewheel ratchet system.

I hear there is a new version of the wheelset about to come out for 2016 HS II with a new hub design, making the wheels stiffer still.
 

Avatar
wycombewheeler [1364 posts] 3 years ago
0 likes
VeloSolutions wrote:

Zonda's have cup and cone bearings, the Miche hub is really another notch or two up the quality ladder compared to the Zonda's.  The free hub body is really smooth and does not make a racket as soon as you freewheel!

Love that Zonda freewheel noise

1) lets everyone know you are coasting as you pass them, (my bike is smoother than yours, I can pass you even though you are pedalling and I am not)

2)  quite effective at letting pedestrians know you are coming up behind them, some object to silent approach, some object to using a bell, I have yet to have anyone complain about the freehub noise.

3) even when riding solo, I still enjoy the noise, biggest problem is I don't get the same noise from my campag bullets.

Also the spoke pattern on the zonda is more stylish than the miche wheels.

Avatar
Vinerman [64 posts] 3 years ago
0 likes
wycombewheeler wrote:
VeloSolutions wrote:

Zonda's have cup and cone bearings, the Miche hub is really another notch or two up the quality ladder compared to the Zonda's.  The free hub body is really smooth and does not make a racket as soon as you freewheel!

Love that Zonda freewheel noise

1) lets everyone know you are coasting as you pass them, (my bike is smoother than yours, I can pass you even though you are pedalling and I am not)

2)  quite effective at letting pedestrians know you are coming up behind them, some object to silent approach, some object to using a bell, I have yet to have anyone complain about the freehub noise.

3) even when riding solo, I still enjoy the noise, biggest problem is I don't get the same noise from my campag bullets.

Also the spoke pattern on the zonda is more stylish than the miche wheels.

Stylish? this is personal, i find the Campagnolo ones not so stylish, rear wheel has big gaps due to spoke distribution.