At road.cc every product is thoroughly tested for as long as it takes to get a proper insight into how well it works. Our reviewers are experienced cyclists that we trust to be objective. While we strive to ensure that opinions expressed are backed up by facts, reviews are by their nature an informed opinion, not a definitive verdict. We don't intentionally try to break anything (except locks) but we do try to look for weak points in any design. The overall score is not just an average of the other scores: it reflects both a product's function and value – with value determined by how a product compares with items of similar spec, quality, and price.
Good scores are more common than bad, because fortunately good products are more common than bad.
The Genetic STV Stem does the job of holding your handlebar securely while looking good, and if you are a weight weenie then it could help drop those grams compared to a lot of the competition.
The STV is hollow forged from 7075 series aluminium alloy and with its single piece clamp it weighs just 120g in this 110mm length, which is pretty impressive, especially for the money when compared to others we've tested. The stem it replaced on my bike, the Ritchey WCS C220 84D, is about 16g heavier for the same size and that'll set you back another 35 quid. Obviously you can't feel that out on the road but to some people it matters. PRO's LT stem is £34.99 but is 33g heavier.
Being light doesn't mean that Genetic has sacrificed stiffness as there is no give whatsoever, and while it is difficult to judge in isolation, swapping this one out with the Ritchey and back again showed no signs of a harsh ride either.
Just like the Ritchey, the painted finish is smooth to the touch and gives a more expensive look than stems where you can still see the surface imperfections of the material through the paint. It is quite easy to scratch and mark, though, so you need to be careful with it.
As you'd expect, the clamp end for the steerer is 1 1/8in and it's held in place with a standard two-bolt design.
Up front the clamp will take a 31.8mm diameter handlebar and the inside face of the clamping plate is dimpled to pair up with the sandpaper style finished on most bar centres for grip.
In use, the handlebar stayed firm with the bolts tightened up to their 5Nm recommendation, even when rattling along on rough roads.
Size-wise the STV starts at 60mm, with that, the 70mm and 80mm lengths having a +/-13° rise. For most road applications you are likely to be looking at the 90mm to 130mm range, and those have a less extreme +/-6° angle.
Overall, the STV is a very good stem and I think it looks more expensive than its £49.99 price tag.
A good looking stem that is well made and pretty impressive on the scales
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road.cc test report
Make and model: Genetic STV Stem
Size tested: 31.8 dia, 110mm
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?
Genetic literally describes the STV as a lightweight road stem, and I don't think there is much else to say really.
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
Hollow forged 7075 body
1 1/8" steerer clamp
31.8mm diameter handlebar clamp
60mm to 130mm length (10mm increments)
For its weight, the STV is good value, and it looks good too.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
Stiffness aplenty, and it grips the handlebar well.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
Looks much more expensive than it actually is.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
The matt finish marks quite easily.
How does the price compare to that of similar products in the market, including ones recently tested on road.cc?
Ritchey WCS C220 84D is £85, PRO's LT is £34.99.
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
All the features you need and looks great – just make sure you aren't too rough with the painted finish.
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
With 20 years of road cycling and over 150,000 miles in his legs it's safe to say Stu is happiest when on the bike whatever the weather. Since writing his first review for road.cc back in 2009 he has also had a career in engineering including 3D-CAD design and product development, so has a real passion for all of the latest technology coming through in the industry but is also a sucker for a classic steel frame, skinny tyres, rim brakes and a damn good paintjob.
His fascination with gravel bikes is getting out of control too!