Magura MT8 Review

There are lot’s of choices for disc brakes out there; Avid, Shimano, Hayes, Magura etc. We had the change to get a few new pairs of the Magura MT8’s on our team guys bikes this year. Here is a review that John Weathers did for us. The MT brake line up looks to be the go-to brake of 2012 for Sunset Cycles!

“I’ve been running Magura’s newest top of the line XC brake — the MT8 (with 160mm rotors) for ~ 10 rides and a couple races now and feel like I have enough miles with them to give a legit review.

Price: High but no higher than others in the uber light XC category.  The MT6 is only an ounce heavier per brake and the price drops by ~ 1/3.

Weight: Legitimately stoopid light, these things dropped over an ounce per brake from my already light Avid Ultimates.

Install: In a word, easy.  The post mounts made alignment a piece of cake.  The rotors came straight.  All you need to do is line ’em up and apply pressure to the levers.  If your alignment is off, just pull the wheel off, spread the pads/pistons with a screwdriver and try again.  I broke them in using the water and steady pressure method. Levers have a single adjustment for reach, which I didn’t need to play with.

Lever Design: Very comfortable, no issues. Pivot point near the bar means you get maximum leverage. Be sure to move your brake levers in on your bars so you are pulling on the end of the levers — so many bikes are set up wrong off the floor of the bike shop in this way …

Performance: First few rides they made noise in the slop but have since settled down.  Power is very good — no problem one fingering in all situations.  But not mega powerful — these are XC brakes and it shows in that they emphasize modulation.  The feel on these brakes is by far the best I have ever used — liner power increase through the range of lever pull once engaged, all the way to “plenty”.  I would go up a size in front rotor if I had a 6″ travel bike, otherwise the 6″ (160mm) rotors are just fine for my weight (~ 150).  With dry trails that lack bite the modulation is really nice — I forgot about my brakes and how they were performing in the last 7 hours of riding in dry conditions.  That’s the ultimate compliment for a bike component — it works so well you don’t think about it.  Now if only I could say the same about my drive train …

Reliability: So far so good.  I like mineral oil over DOT fluid and the 5 year no-leak warranty is legit.  I have Marta SL’s that are approaching 5 years and they have yet to leak.  Same goes for the MT8’s so far.

Looks/Finish: Build quality looks very high.  Definitely better than Avids, on par with XTR.

Would I buy them again?:  In a word, definitely.  In fact I’m probably getting them for my hard tail.  The only other brake I will consider is XTR, but I need to be convinced they are superior because I like the idea of having the same or similar systems on each of my MTB’s.”

John Weathers


About sunsetpdx

Bicycle Shop Owner

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