SQlab 612 Ergowave Active Saddle - Review

Oct 26, 2016
by Paul Aston  
SQlab 612 Saddle - Review


SQlab has been in the saddle scene since 2001, gathering information, undertaking scientific studies and even writing a book on the subject, literally: 'The Path to the Perfect Saddle.' Their latest Ergowave saddle technology was created in conjunction with Frankfurt's University Hospital and the Frankfurt University of Applied Sciences.

The 612 Ergowave Active saddle promises a lot, with a choice of widths from 12-15cm in 1cm increments, and three interchangeable compounds of rubber elastomer to support your body weight using their 'Active Technology.' My saddle was the most affordable of the 612 range that features these two technologies with TiTube alloy rails and is priced at $189.99 USD / €149.95.




SQlab 612 Ergowave Active Details:

• TiTube Alloy rails
• C84 Kevlar cover
• Superlight Foam
• 3 interchangeable elastomer dampers
• Relief of perineal area: 60%
• Length: 280mm
• Width: 12cm, 13cm, 14cm and 15cm
• Weights: 275g, 278g, 281g, 286g
• Price: $189.99 USD / €149.95
sq-lab.com

SQlab 612 Saddle - Review
SQlab 612 Saddle - Review


Fit

SQlabs Ergowave saddles are probably the most adjustable on the market. By visiting your local dealer for measuring, or by placing some corrugated cardboard on a hard surface and resting down onto your sit bones, you can measure the distance between your sit bones. Once this is known, follow the SQlab recommendations for your style of riding and add them together. As it turns out, I have sit bones spaced 10 centimeters apart, and being a mountain biker that prefers an upright pedaling position, the recommendation is to add 4cm to that number. There are no gender specific saddles from SQlab; on average men's hips are narrower than women's, but the correct saddle should only be chosen on actual width, not based on the idea that 'a female needs a wider saddle,' or vice-versa.


SQlab 612 Saddle - Review
My 10cm wide sit bones, plus my choice of mountain biking meant the 14cm option was the correct size for me.


Technology

The Ergowave shape was developed to distribute pressure evenly to the sit bones while also relieving pressure in sensitive areas. You can read more about all of SQlabs technologies here.

The saddle's second feature is called Active Technology, which uses interchangeable elastomers located at the rear of the saddle that are designed to flex along with the motion that occurs while pedaling. They can be adjusted using the soft, medium or hard elastomers, although swapping them out isn't the easiest job, and requires strong fingers.


SQlab 612 Saddle - Review
The Active 612 is designed to flex slightly in conjunction with the rocking of a rider's hips as they pedal.
SQlab 612 Saddle - Review
A choice of three different compounds of elastomer are supplied to gain the correct level of support.


Performance

I felt instantly at home on the Active 612 saddle, and headed right into six straight days of riding at this years Trans-Rezia with minimal prior bedding in period. This is easily the most comfortable and supportive saddle I have used to date, and there was no pressure anywhere there shouldn't be. I played with the different Active Technology elastomers, but found there was not a major difference between the three. Being fairly light I stuck with the softest compound for more comfort and my notion that it should absorb trail chatter.

The saddle's construction is solid, and the water resistant material stayed free of tears. The vertical plastic edges of the saddle are covered with foam, and the top layer of material ensures there are no sharp edges that'll knock your inner thighs. The only negative I can draw to the Active 612 is the width. At the widest point the rear of the saddle is 152mm, and while it didn't prevent me from moving fore and aft, it was definitely noticeable.


SQlab 612 Saddle - Review


Pinkbike's Take
bigquotesSaddle choice will always be a matter of personal preference, but when it comes to fit and comfort SQlab have done a great job of taking away some of the guesswork that goes into finding the correct saddle. A wide array of fit options in conjunction with a sturdy construction make the Active 612 worth a try. - Paul Aston




Visit the feature gallery for hi-res and additional images.




57 Comments

  • + 63
 Comfort on a bike will always sit well with me, but the price is still a pain in the ass.
  • + 4
 The price for this one is seated a bit high for me. Maybe they could adjust it down a bit?
  • + 14
 Good post!
  • + 4
 How assertive to use a university to assist in assimilation of science in their saddle.
  • + 13
 I read the price and had to sit down
  • + 1
 Its true
  • + 50
 That fart pocket is convenient.
  • + 18
 They should make at least 3 sizes of this pocket in the middle. Small for XC, medium for enduro and Large for DH.
  • + 8
 I can say from experience of owning the 611 active that these are great saddles. Gooch fatigue is gone and feels like pedaling on a cloud.
  • + 7
 Man, $200 for a saddle? What's next, carbon fiber frames? I guess someone is buying this somewhere, just not here.
  • + 19
 I'm going to skip the inevitable comparison to a road saddle and jump straight to TT.

www.dashcycles.com/tt9

...or maybe a level further?

harrisleather.com/product/phils-pick-saddle-2
  • + 4
 @Bluefire: That Dash saddles appearance is mildly suggestive of a rectal exam to me. I would be nervous approaching a bike with one of those on it.
  • + 1
 @Bluefire: or the final level: pretentious hipster: www.brooksengland.com/en_uk/saddles/swallow-b15-titanium-1.html

(i might be one of those pretentious hipsters though; the thing is beautiful)
  • + 6
 After noticing some numbness after long climbs using a Specialized Henge saddle, I ponied up the dough for an SQ labs saddle. I now have no numbness or hot spots after long climbs, so it was worth every penny. I call it the "cock saver saddle"
  • + 2
 Just take your saddle off.

It's basically the same thing as paying over $200 for a bike seat
  • + 1
 @adpeters82: how did you get one of their saddles? There is no shipping option outside of Germany on their website?
  • + 2
 @Beez177: You can find our saddles through SQlab USA / SKS USA More info at www.sqlab-usa.com
  • + 2
 @JuniperBike: Thanks man, found them at Radsportusa.
  • + 1
 @Beez177: Yes - same place!
  • + 7
 SQlab 611 active. Best seat I have ever owned.
  • + 3
 Same here. And my prostate gland stays happy too. Wink
  • - 2
 @MrEtnie: bollocks
  • + 3
 "the water resistant material stayed free of tears" tears???

There are two ways that can be read. To tell the truth, I am not sure which is what was intended.
  • + 5
 Really? Because every time I cry I wipe my face on my saddle
  • + 6
 I like sit on bik seet
  • + 5
 These are awesome saddles
  • + 5
 A nutsack cradle?
Nice.
  • + 4
 Saddle up for entertaining comments.
  • + 1
 Hmmmm.
Reading the info on the 612 on SQLab's site, it seems as if the 612 is more of a road bike saddle(they say it was in fact, designed as such), and the 611 is more of a dedicated MTB seat
  • + 1
 YoKev - You are correct, the 612 is more focused on Road or XC MTB which the 611 Ergowave is more focused on MTB trail riding. They are very similar in shape although the nose on the 611 is 4mm wider and 1mm longer to provide more support when moving forward while climbing in technical sections. The transitions (edges) are also a little smoother, padding is slightly less firm and their is Kevlar across the back.
  • + 1
 Do they ship to the US?
On their website, it's in English but when you checkout there's no option outside Germany in the " country " box?
  • + 3
 elastomers are back!!! oh my...
  • + 2
 I might recommend changing "Most affordable" to "Least account gutting", but I'm no editor.
  • + 1
 I can't help but wonder how much water this little pouch will accumulate. It's like taking a bath each time I sit down.
  • + 1
 Does anyone know how this saddle compares with the Selle SMP's in regards to reducing pressure on the private parts area?
  • + 0
 I can't help butt wonder, if I sat for long enough in that saddle would, after a long ride, that 612 shape be left on my right butt cheek?
  • + 0
 For 150E you would expect it to do the job...... what am i saying ? for 150E you would expect a massage after every ride as well......
  • + 1
 Is there a measurement you can give for the 'sensitive' area?
  • + 8
 That is size specific as well. They're not physically going to measure you, don't worry. They just look at your riding style. Danny Hart for instance has got a massive pocket there. Yes Rob Warner, that's how he managed to sit down in Champery.
  • + 1
 @vinay: lmfao!
  • + 1
 @vinay: It's a fair point but I'm just wondering if Danny can ask for some royalties patent rights and shit
  • - 2
 i guess it all depends on how one rides, i'm actually seated probly only 20- 25% of the ride so this product isn't really intended for me. but lots o riders that spend most of the time seated might find this design great.
  • - 1
 If they're going to get too intense about it, you'd think they'd do a mould of your contact area in riding position.
  • - 1
 $189 US for a seat, no thank you! That's like $220 Canadian with the horrible exchange rate right now Facepalm
  • + 3
 You think you have a horrible exchange rate?! With the rate that the pound is nose diving, I'm pretty sure the next bike I buy will be paid for with animal skins I had to hunt and a delightful selection of different coloured beans Frown
  • + 0
 Azonic Love seat is still the best ! No needles up my crotch .
  • + 0
 Look pretty good, but its $300.00 in Canada, yuck!!!!
  • + 0
 My nutsack would fit great in that canyon
  • - 2
 149€ for a saddle with a little spot to place your testiculars?? Where are we going
  • + 10
 If you're having issues with numbness or other stuff down your 'gentleman', it can cause erectile disfunction and on long term even problems reproducing. In case you're having that issue, investing €149 in a saddle that prevents both of these problems is totally worth it's money. Obviously not everyone needs it, but for those who do, this is a great solution and a cheap way to permanently solve your problems (doctors visit costs more).
  • + 2
 " 149€ for a saddle with a little spot to place your testiculars?" Now that you put it that way the saddle is under priced. Sold!
  • + 7
 Surprising to see how many people on PB look at that seat and comment on their intent to tuck their nuts behind them and sit on them as they ride. Are these riders doing that now!?
  • + 2
 @Mattin: im with you there. No more prostate gland problems after switching to their saddles...
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