Pinkbike Product Picks

Nov 4, 2011
by Mike Levy  
POC Iris DH goggle

POC's Iris DH goggle uses a flexible polyurethane frame that can be bent in half without causing any damage, and they are sized slightly smaller than most other goggles for an ideal fit within POC's Cortex full face helmet. Both the upper and lower ridges of the frame feature large, foam covered openings to help keep air flow high and the chance of fogging low, with that cause further aided by an anti-fog treatment applied to the clear lens. While the Iris DH doesn't come with tear offs, the stock lens does come equipped with tear off posts to accept them, and the adjustable, but not replaceable goggle strap uses silicone strips to keep it in place on your helmet. The Iris DH goggle is available in white and orange colors, and retails for $99.99 USD. www2.pocsport.com


POC Iris DH goggle
POC Iris DH goggle
POC Iris DH goggle offers a unique fit that may be just the ticket for those with small faces.


Pinkbike's Take:
bigquotesWith their slightly smaller than average size the Iris DH goggle is a great option for those with smaller faces, or for use with full face helmets with a tighter opening. As you'd expect, the fit with POC's own Cortex helmets is spot on, but they also play well with Troy Lee's D2 lid, a full face that can present some fitting issues with certain goggles. Unfortunately, that same small shape that has them fitting so well in certain helmets will have some riders cursing the goggle's frame that is in the rider's field of view slightly more than larger options. Fogging didn't seem to be any better or worse than the competition, despite the large vents on the top and bottom of the Iris' frame, and an additional coating of an anti-fog treatment will go a long way to keeping your vision clear during the rainy Fall riding season. Bottom line: be sure to give the Iris DH goggle a test fit before buying - they could be perfect for many riders, but the fit is unique. - Mike Levy




Truvativ Holzfeller DM stem

It's hard to remember a time when direct mount stems weren't around, with them now pretty much considered compulsory equipment for any proper downhill rig. And for good reason: they not only improve front end rigidity, but also eliminate the chance of twisting a stem in a crash. Truvativ's Holzfeller direct mount stem is just one of many options, but its burly 3D forged construction and solid appearance should make it a favorite with bigger or aggressive riders. The 185 gram (with hardware) Holzfeller fits the BoXXer mounting bolt pattern that many other forks use as well, and is available in both a 60mm length for tall riders, as well as a more common 50mm reach. The Holzfeller features updated graphics and can be had in black, white and the red color shown here that matches the red used on RockShox's BoXXer fork. It retails for $85 USD. www.sram/truvativ.com


Truvativ Holzfeller stem
The Holzfeller direct mount stem is as solid as they come, but the same can't be said for its finish.


Pinkbike's Take:
bigquotesWhile there are many direct mount stems out there that have enough material removed that we really do have to question their longterm performance, with some of them even using a split, three piece design, the Holzfeller has a comforting and burly look to it that never had us questioning its reliability. At 185 grams, including hardware, it isn't the lightest, but it isn't trying to be, and it feels as stiff as a rider could ever hope for (although any 50mm direct mount stem worth its salt should tick that particular box). Tolerances are spot on, and we loved how Truvativ has put the torque numbers for the bolts right onto the stem - you have no excuse for messing up this install! We also have to mention the 60mm length option, something that not too many other stem makers offer, but an option that tall riders will appreciate. Add in the stem's reasonable $85 MSRP and you can't really go wrong with the Holzfeller. Our single complaint is merely cosmetic related: its finish seemed to mar easily, with our test unit looking a bit used sooner than we would have hope for. - Mike Levy




Answer ProTAPER 780 DH handlebar

Answer's ProTAPER were once the bars of choice, with their anodized gold option showing up on the front of bikes of those in the know. Fast forward a few years and there are many other aftermarket options to choose from, but the ProTAPER name is still alive. Their latest DH model features the same comfortable 4° up sweep and 8° backsweep, but in a 780mm (30.7'') wide package - with cut marks to make trimming it down easy - that many of today's aggressive riders are looking for. The ProTAPER name comes from the bar's internal taper that puts material where it's needed most without adding unneeded bulk to other areas. The 335 gram DH model is available in two height options, 12.5 or 25.4mm, and standard color choices include red, gold, black and white. Looking for something that stands out from the crowd? Answer is producing a limited number of bars that feature one of two standout graphic designs: either the red, white and black Canadian C-Works scheme, or the darker Chaos version shown below. The graphics are not your usual film dip, but rather fused into the bar's anodic coating pores before the finish is sealed off. Answer says that the result is a far more robust surface that will look great for a long time. The ProTAPER 780 DH retails for $65 USD in the standard colors, or $95 USD for either of the two limited edition graphics. www.answerproducts.com


Custom Answer ProTaper bar
At over 30'' wide and with its eye catching Chaos color scheme, the ProTAPER garnered a lot of attention on the trails.


Pinkbike's Take:
bigquotesWhile wide bars are certainly not for everyone, we bolted up the 780 DH to a 100mm travel 29'er (oh, the blasphemy!) and have never looked back. The added width, over 1.5" on each side compared to the stock bar, raised the bike's fun factor and had me riding the bike in a much more confident manner, even if I had to watch my knuckles when it came to squeezing between tight trees. The ProTAPER's eight degree bend had my hands feeling like they were at home, and the low, half inch, rise worked well to compensate for the bike's bigger 29'' wheels. As advertised, our custom "Chaos" finish seemed to be quite resistant to scratching, with it not looking any worse for wear after having the bike's brake levers rotate multiple times from crashing. We also can't complain about the bar's reasonable $65 USD (for the standard colors) asking price, with it coming in at less than many other options. Any downsides? The 335 gram weight isn't exactly anything to brag about, but it is about par for the course when talking about 30'' wide handlebars... we just wish it wasn't. - Mike Levy





Have you used any of the products featured in Pinkbike's Picks? Share your impressions below.


109 Comments

  • 27 0
 Its good to see a Pinkbike Product Pick without any rubbish, all of those products are sensible options which all riders will contemplate buying rather than some random gizmo with cheaper and more practical alternatives. Thanks Pinkbike!
  • 50 3
 i just like how its all downhill shit, no messing around haha
  • 14 5
 None of that lycra bull aha.
  • 2 0
 Ahahah, nice ! They mean for biking Razz
  • 2 1
 Cheers MeAlex thats my evening sorted Wink
  • 3 0
 those bars look sick! dopest paint job ever Razz
  • 4 0
 We try to cover a wide range of gear because a lot of different types of riders visit the site. This PP was certainly more DH themed, but it won't always be like that.
  • 1 0
 Wow I love the product pick picks. One of my favourite segments for sure. I really thinks it's sweet when the articles apply to the average rider-I do like the racing coverage and POD but this and the Tech Tuesdays are just super sick.
  • 1 0
 i agree. I love seeing these. and i sign in every tuesday with tech-tuesday in mind. Learn some good things from these
  • 1 1
 haha... rubbish..
  • 6 1
 I have to say that i was not at all impressed with the POC goggles. The set i had steamed up halfway down the first run! ( I was riding while they steamed up!) I had constant steaming issues in all sorts of conditions and eventually just gave up on them altogether. I have never had another goggle with such a bad steaming issue and i have used Oakley, Spy, Nema and IXS ones before.
  • 26 15
 POC is an overpriced poseur product.
  • 16 2
 Youve clearly never tried their body armor.
  • 11 10
 No POC is overpriced, it's for skiers who are famous for over spending (I know plenty who'll admit it!). The POC goggle is not high performance, as spunion says. You just don't get what you pay for with POC, who are quite elitist and stuck up imo.
If you have a small face try Oakley Crowbar or Spy, both fit quite small, crowbar has advantage of strap not being directly attached to frame so fit is really good.
  • 3 0
 I got a pair of Iris DH for a cheap price and had no steaming issues but I think the goggles are rather big.
  • 7 2
 The poc stuff i've tried, especially the kneeshin guards, are miles better than their competitors. so comfortable and with clean, innovative designs. i appreciate it's really expensive but you get what you pay for
  • 8 0
 overpriced?? what about D2s and D3s? To my knowledge, POC is the only company where the owners are actual scientists (one is a neurologist), applying their knowledge directly onto their products. I've tried both D2s and POCs, and i have to say the Cortex flow is way above any D2 i've ever tried. It also turned out to be cheaper (got both of my Flows at 150 each, brand new). As for their googles, i dont find them neither better nor worse. Like tabletop84 wrote above, they are rather big
  • 3 0
 I like that you can bend the goggles in half repeatedly without causing damage, I like to do that before my race run to relieve the nerves. The article is also right in implying that some companies are making direct mount seems too light, some of them have been cracking. I like that the hollzfeller is cold-forged, I don't think anyone else does that. But the rise looks a little high.
  • 4 8
flag nouser (Nov 4, 2011 at 6:38) (Below Threshold)
 Have you tried a D3 yet ? D3 are a step above anything I've ever tried, the D2 is old news man, you can't use that as TLD's comparison anymore. The D2 has minimal protection compared to the D3 or even the cortex, I have a friend who owns a POC and my carbon D3 is lighter, better looking and not just a singular color. TLD's cost a significant amount however you pay for the name, the design and the fact that it's light as hell. You can just buy the precious years helmet if you want it to be cheaper. Or you could just get a job or get sponsored and stop whining about it. Everyone has a preference soooo...
  • 5 0
 have you tried the carbon Cortex DH? im not trying to argue which is better,...at this level/price, pretty much everything is top notch. grow up
  • 8 1
 you can't hate on POC for trying to make a product that is progressively better than the competitors
  • 3 10
flag nouser (Nov 4, 2011 at 10:49) (Below Threshold)
 ill admit POC body is good and has a great fit but the POC helmets arent even on the same level as a D3, the D3 is practically a moto helmet and offers great protection, ive seen to many broken POC helmets to try one my self. But there other goggles look sick
  • 6 1
 Rockurshoxoff95 thing is though, a carbon giro remedy is only £100. Its lighter and offers more protection than a carbon D3
  • 4 0
 I agree i tried on the fabled D3 and i found it to be extremely uncomfortable. and the giro is a great budget helmet but i wouldn't say its on the same level of build quality or protection that POC is on, probably due to the pricing. But my Cortex flow, my oh my, that's a great helmet, the most comfortable helmet i have ever owned, plus the way its built is great for someone with asthma like me, the large space between your face and helmet allows tons of air in. I have also fallen on the visor many many times and not once had it snapped or fractured anywhere.
  • 2 0
 also, if memory serves me well, i seem to remember POC being one of the few helmets safe to ride after being crashed once. I'd hate to spend 4 bills on a D3, crash it once, then feel like next time i'll crash it, my skulll's gonna split in two. ...a bit of an extreme view, i agree, but you get my point
  • 1 5
flag nouser (Nov 4, 2011 at 18:04) (Below Threshold)
 Well, everyone has preferences but u obviously haven't done you're research, d3's have dual density shock pad system making them good to crash on a few times of course if you care about that stuff that says a lot about the fact that you think you suck cause ur gonna crash a lot :/
  • 3 0
 I don't need to do research to know that it was quite uncomfortable Razz I'm not saying its not a good helmet, it's up at the top for sure, i was just pointing out to the haters that POC isn't an over priced , wannabe elitist product. They have a very good protection system built into all their armor(trust me i own their helmet, knee and elbow pads). obviously the haters need to actually own a POC or try it before passing judgement on it. POC may not have the level of style of the D3 (although i like POCs minimalist design style) but I find that Troy lee tends to get a lot of unneeded hype when there are better alternatives out there that don't get nearly as much attention. again , its all my opinion. i can't talk for the goggles though i'm still rocking my giro ones Razz
  • 4 2
 look, a helmet's a helmet. they all work. there are standards, and they all meet them. as for the multi crash thing, THE wins for me. they offer half price for a replacement. that and they're the most comfortable helmet i've tried, with every goggle on the market fitting and ultra light carbon shell
  • 5 0
 DON'T EVEN TRY TO BRING SENSE TO THIS ARGUMENT. IT WON'T WORK
  • 3 1
 Rockurshoxoff95, as I was saying...grow up buddy
  • 1 1
 Well as I said I tried my friends and I didn't like it as much. Read my entire comment you would see that I said "everyone has preferrences" in other word I don't give 2 shots what people like or don't like and I don't care what people think of my helmet I got cause I like it and I think it's comfortable. That's all the argument I need. I'm not out to make enemies over something so petty as a helmet, ok ? As for u superdanu stop acting like the big man here and telling people to grow up. Seriously this is a biking site where people have a mind and opinion of they're own, I reeeeally dont need u speaking to me like I'm f*cking 5. Now I really hope this bullshit is cleared up, I have an opinion and so does everyone else... The end
  • 6 0
 ...OR IS IT?
STAY TUNED FOR NEXT WEEKS EPISODE OF "POINTLESS ARGUMENTS ON THE INTERNET"
  • 1 1
 grow up Rockurshoxoff95
  • 1 0
 Ahahahahah !!!!! Funny shit ! Lol "OR IS IT ?????"
  • 1 0
 Just lol, the super mature 31 year old XD what a loser
  • 1 1
 grow up
  • 3 0
 play nice kids. this isn't youtube. respect should be mutual, we all ride bikes Smile
  • 1 0
 very right
  • 5 0
 Maybe I can agree that POC is overprized, even for us living not too far from the main factory. But! - Im using their Cortex helmet and body armor, goggles, knee pads... And it's quality s***! I have NO problems with fog. NO problems with fitting(56cm small head). And the body armour is amazingly comfortable, compared to what IVE tried before ; and it saves my ass everydamn time! The only single complaint I could come up with is as you all agree - prizewize.

But I have to add, that I guess it's like any other bike, bike component, set up, girl - we all have different taste in things and we are all influenced by the environment/place we are in.
  • 5 0
 I don't believe POC are overpriced, yes they are expensive, but you get what you pay for, a sick, well designed product that works and feels like it should. My friend has a cortex helmet in size Large, he loves it, he feels it's the best helmet he's ever worn. Me on the other hand, I have the VPD Vest (Armor), Elbow pads and Full leg armour and I have to say that it's some of the most comfortable and effective, protection and performance wise, equipment I have ever owned.

Personally, If you compare POC with Troy Lee helmets for instance, the price is really not that different, but since it's Troy Lee, people don't complain but I would go with POC any day.

As for the Goggles, compare prices with any other goggle, it's somewhat within the range.
  • 5 1
 If you are comparing POC to Troy Lee, they are comparable in price, but POC's quality is WAY higher. I agree that you get what you pay for. Everything POC puts out is very high quality, and you can feel it the second you pick it up.
  • 3 7
flag bigburd (Nov 4, 2011 at 9:52) (Below Threshold)
 POC and troy lee are both over priced under-quality poser bollox .
  • 4 0
 POCs quality is second to none. The trabec is one of the best helmets ive ever warn. In most cases quality comes at a price. Dont hate what you cant afford. If its such a poser product why do you see a lot of pros using them?
  • 2 0
 +1 for the Trabec, I love the look and feel of that helmet lol.

@Smike I know POC's quality is way better then the Troy Lee, that's what I meant to say.
  • 1 0
 I have had Answer protapers DH for two years now, love the angles and they hold up very well. I ride mostly XC/AM with them and they actualy feel slightly too stiff for that use, but in bikeparks they seem perfect. Highly recommended, I was also pleased with their great customer service when they fixed me rise/colour I was not able to find in Europe.
  • 1 0
 I love the ProTaper. I ran the old ones since '99; lol. Always loved the angles- nothing better. I have the new design, in a low rise cut to little over 29" for all-mountain duty. Once again, the feel is spot on and they are very sturdy and stiff. I have the black with red graphic and I must say the red paint scratches easily, but the rest of the bar still looks new. The anodizing is high quality. The red paint scratching off does not really bother me, at least not enough to deduct any points from this otherwise excellent product.
  • 1 0
 I have the normal Answer Pro Taper 780 DH bars, in white (opposite colours to tested and minus the chaos graphics) and they marked up really badly, really easily; black marks everwhere. A little disapointing on bars at that price.
They are a good shape, weight and width though and i'm happy on that front.
  • 1 0
 I had the same thing. Mounted them up on a bike and than moved them to another bikes within the month and they looked OLD.
  • 3 0
 Why did you guys have to tell me that! I just ordered the white/copper bars and they should be here early next week. Oh well, I ordered them directly from Answer when I couldn't find them in 1" rise anywhere and there was a mix-up and the sent me the 720 AMs by mistake, which I got this week. When I brought this to their attention Tom at Answer, who has been more helpful than any other person I have ever dealt with anywhere, told me to run the AMs til the replacement (free of any charge) DHs come and then keep the AMs to throw on my DJ or something so I will not be too disappointing if what you guys say is true. A lot of companies make you send their product back when the send you the wrong part.This my friends is customer service at it's best.
  • 1 0
 Maybe white shouldn't be your colorway? Wink
  • 1 0
 But white is so fresh and so clean, clean.
  • 2 0
 I like white stuff, that comment was jokingly aimed at dogboy. That is so awesome that they hooked you up like that! The AM version is a great bar too.
  • 2 0
 Yeah I didn't think your comment was for me because you would have to be the fastest speed reader in the world since our comments posted almost instantaneously from what I saw. I just felt like making a stupid comment.....it's Friday!....I'm feeling giddy today!
  • 1 0
 I want to know more about the Bontrager Rhythm Pro Carbon 750mm bars in that stem pic. Weight? Rise? Hoping in the 225g range or less. Looks like flat bar with a flip flop +/- 5mm rise deal, like what the Niner bars have.

Did Trek let you take a few goodies home for a few months?

I'm more interested in Point1 stems, I like my Zeal goggles (even more poser than POC goggles), and no preference in bars yet, though Easton tends to find its way onto my bikes in a too narrow form.
  • 1 0
 Bontrager has some very cool bars coming out, including an insanely wide and light carbon DH bar. Stay tuned..
  • 1 0
 The Hayes guys brought a set of those bars into Rays Milwaukee a few weeks back for us to checkout, they are really cool bars ! We had them just sitting on the check in desk and tons of people asked to see them and wanted to know about them and when we were going to be selling them ! The graphics are not just on the surface, they seem baked in or something, dont know how they did it but it seems way tougher than a painted bar. It is a shame to cover the bars with grips and levers !
  • 3 1
 wheres the usual troll product? that causes everyone to argue? last one i saw was the £20 tire pressure gauge. nothing this week?
  • 2 0
 lol, I know .... no brawling today.
  • 7 0
 *insert negative , biased and unfounded opinion on product here*
  • 1 0
 Hehehe...
  • 3 0
 Well, they already started argueing POC being overpriced or not. And they are now in the middle of the TLD-POC fight.
  • 4 0
 Why the double reverb buttons??
  • 2 0
 One's a hydraulic Xloc fork lock-out button....
  • 19 0
 One is an eject button.
  • 1 0
 ^^^ Hahaha! I just pictured that in my mind.
  • 5 0
 No shit where else would you picture it?
  • 1 0
 It's important to note that the Truvativ stem IS THE ONLY 60mm direct mount stem you can buy (I would love to hear of more). They are the only company that sees taller riders as a viable slice of the riding population.
  • 2 0
 And the fact that they have three 6 foot plus riders on the SRAM team Razz
  • 1 0
 I believe Burgtec makes a 60. The Truvativ is pretty much it for tall riders. I'm glad that it isn't trying to be as low as possible like most other DM stems.
  • 1 0
 Goggles look average, need vent ports in lenses like high end ski/moto goggles.

That stem look sweet, wish it fit my old 888.

Answer pro taper always a great value and strength to weight ratio very competetive.
  • 2 0
 Spent the last year on a set of ProTAPERs, best bar I've ridden. Highly recommended!
  • 1 0
 Ive had mine for a few months now, they are so nice!!
  • 1 0
 Answer bars are really good, had mine for over a year. comfortable geometry but they are starting to develop a little flex now.
  • 1 0
 I run Enve carbon DH bars on my 29er cut down to 780. Before that I ran Kore's at the same width for about 2 years. Wide bars rule.
  • 1 0
 i answered with ANSWER now answer looks wrong when i see it written down lol
  • 2 0
 is that the 2012 protaper bar? cuz ive never seen that colour before...
  • 1 0
 those are the limited edition bars and you can also get them in a canadian color scheme in red with a whole bunch of maple leaves. It looks pretty sick.
  • 1 1
 Poc goggles are crap...You can get a brand new Oakley mayhem goggle with 2 lenses (1 clear and one amber), a kit of 7 tear off and a protective nose for 80$.
  • 3 0
 These are MSRP prices. MSRP of Mayhems is $95, so it's not that different.
  • 1 0
 Well you still get more for almost the same price...
  • 1 0
 I have oakley crowbars and I got them for 30 bucks (used) still in brand new condishion...very nice comfortabe goggles...with tearoff tabs
  • 1 0
 I'd love to see the cockpit with the protaper from a riders perspective. You happen to have a picture?
  • 1 0
 Here is a link to my Answer ProTapers in red and black...
www.pinkbike.com/photo/7361948
  • 1 0
 answer for me as well since i am awaitnge my pair of canadian to be ordered for the new year
  • 2 0
 What's with the double reverb triggers?
  • 1 0
 One controls the fork and the other is for the post. Both use XLoc remotes.
  • 1 0
 Mike are you really finding use for fork lock out?
  • 2 0
 It depends.. A lot of my climbing is done of steep gravel roads (unfortunately), so I do find myself using it for that. I also ride to the mountain sometimes. I'm certainly not locking out the XX Sid on the front of my Superfly like a true cross-country rider would though. The fork is set firm enough that I wouldn't really miss it if I took it off though!
  • 3 0
 wide bars save lives!
  • 2 0
 fuck answer bars.... race face atlas bars r where its at
  • 1 0
 Answers look way cooler...just my opinion
  • 1 0
 ahhhhh, but geometry and strength is the key for good bars
  • 1 0
 what kind of headset top cap is that on the bike shown with the Answer handlebar (looks like a Superfly 100)?
  • 1 0
 Weeze
  • 1 0
 You forgot to mention that a DM stem increases the chances of fawking up your lowers! haha
  • 1 0
 is that an answer stem with the bars?
  • 3 0
 Sharp looking stem.
  • 1 0
 dang that is one expensive stem!
  • 1 0
 Agreed with the POC goggles being crap...Stick to armor.
  • 1 0
 Answer bars, love em. POC googles, no thanks, Truvativ stem, looks cheap
  • 1 0
 those bars look sexyyyyyyy
  • 1 0
 I like the bars.. Great paint job...
  • 1 0
 Those goggles are not worth 100 god damn dollars!
  • 1 0
 dang i want those goggles and bars
  • 1 0
 two commande reverb ???
  • 1 0
 One is for the fork, one for the post.
  • 1 0
 ok tank you ;-)

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