The Ergon SR Comp saddle is part of its new SR Road series, which is all about reducing pressure and improving the comfort of the ride. I had my doubts on the first few journeys as it seemed very firm, but once I'd adapted, the SR Comp became a good friend, especially on longer treks.
- Pros: Very comfortable shape, rail flex adds to the comfort
- Cons: Not the neatest of finishes underneath
The model I tested is from the men's range and, as you can probably guess from that, there is also a women's option as well; Emma really liked the SR Sport Gel, and Sarah's been testing the Women's SR Pro Carbon and we'll have her full review very soon.
The reason for separate designs is because we sit differently on the saddle, and, says Ergon, 'Due to their specific pelvic anatomy men are sitting more upright on the saddle.'
To relieve unwanted pressure on the perineal area Ergon has gone for a central channel. Nothing exactly groundbreaking here, we see it all the time, but the one you see here is notably wider than most and is quite a bit deeper at the rear than it is at the front. Coupled to this, the hatched seating area uses OrthoCell inlays which are apparently more durable and lighter than gel.
On the whole, I'm not a big sufferer of discomfort or numbness on the majority of saddles, but there are some I don't get on with. Thankfully, the Ergon isn't one of them. In fact I found it very comfortable, especially after I'd done a few rides to settle everything in.
Those inlays are a nice addition to the firmness of the rest of the saddle, with just a little bit more give for added comfort.
The firmness of the upper means the Ergon is very supportive and it stops the edges of the channel compressing and disappearing.
The width of the channel is noticeable – or unnoticeable, I suppose. After a few rides on the road I switched the SR Comp onto a gravel bike and took to the local tracks. Remaining seated for the fast descents (I normally rise out of the saddle a little to let the bike bounce and move about) and taking the full impacts from the rocks and potholes, the Ergon is noticeably shock absorbing.
Adding to the comfort is the nylon composite shell, which has a bit of flex – as do the TiNox rails.
I like a flat profile saddle as I tend to move about a fair bit from front to back depending on the terrain, so the shape of the Ergon also suited me. When crouched in a race position, the slight uplift of the tail gives you something to push back against when really getting the power down.
The SR Comp is available in two widths: small/medium for those with a measurement of 9-12cm between their sit bones, and the medium/large that we have here for those who measure 12-16cm. The latter is a stonking 160mm wide, with the smaller of the two coming in at a more normal 144mm in width.
Overall quality looks to be good, and the microfibre upper certainly stands up well to scuffs. Underneath, a lot of saddles are using a separate layer to the shell with the upper sandwiched between the two as it is wrapped under, giving a neater finish. The Ergon doesn't have this, which is fine, but the cutting of the material as it runs around the base just looks a little bit untidy – not exactly the finish I'd expect on a 90-quid saddle.
Looking at value, it isn't too bad against some of the opposition. It's a tenner less than the Pro Griffon Gel saddle, which costs £99.99 and which fellow tester Steve felt underperformed for the money.
Alongside the Comp, the SR is also available in two other versions: a Pro and a Pro Carbon, which Steve also tested, though he wasn't fully enamoured by the riding position he had to adopt to get fully comfortable – or the £170 price tag.
On the whole, I found the SR Comp to be very comfortable, especially when it came to gravel riding, the extra flex really coming into its own there.
Well-designed saddle offering plenty of comfort and support on multiple terrains
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road.cc test report
Make and model: Ergon SR Comp Men's saddle
Size tested: M/L
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?
Ergon says, "The new Ergon road saddle for men. Due to their specific pelvic anatomy men are sitting more upright on the saddle. This creates a higher pressure in the highly sensitive perineal area, which often leads to any of the varying forms of discomfort. This is where the relief concept of the SR Men saddle comes into play. Through the falling relief channel with cut-out, the resulting pressure is evenly distributed onto the bone structures (sit bone and parts of the pubic blades). The Y-shape helps keep the freedom of movement high even when riding in the low position typical for road biking."
The Ergon does seem to achieve what the designers have set out to create.
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
Name SR Comp Men
Use Road Bike
Dimensions Length: 272 mm, Width: 144mm/160mm
Size S/M M/L
Shell Nylon Composite
Padding Orthopedic Comfort Foam with OrthoCell® Pads
Gender men specific
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
I found the saddle comfortable and had no issues with numbness.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
The OrthoCell inlays add to the comfort.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
Slightly rough finish underneath.
How does the price compare to that of similar products in the market, including ones recently tested on road.cc?
For the design and technology I think it is a fair price against the opposition.
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 overall score
Saddle comfort is very subjective, but I was impressed with how well the Ergon worked from both a comfort and performance point of view. It's a little rough around the edges in places but does its job really well.
About the tester
I usually ride: This month's test bike My best bike is: B'Twin Ultra CF draped in the latest bling test components
I've been riding for: Over 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.