Specialized Camber Review
If you are looking for a full suspension mountain bike then you may want to consider the new 2012 range of Specialized Camber models. Quality components, affordable prices and rugged durability are all calling cards of these bikes. To get a feel for how they differ from one another, check out this brief outline of their specifications and capabilities.
Specialized Camber Comp
The Specialized Camber Comp is the model to choose if you want to get in at the ground floor of this range. The M4 alloy frame with hydroformed tubing follows the core tenets of any decent bike by being both light and strong. Full suspension bikes are supposed to take punishment, but if the frame is not up to scratch then no amount of high-end shock technology can fix the problem, but thankfully there are no such issues with the Camber Comp.
The RockShox Ario RL air spring rear shock with adjustable rebound is able to take the sting out of any trail’s tail, compensating for impacts and unevenness when you need it to while still giving you a relatively stiff platform for power output when required. The RockShox Recon Silver TK fork provides 120mm of travel and also features a TurnKey damper for easy adjustments. Shimano Alivio Shifters and SLX components sit alongside Tektro Draco hydraulic disc brakes at the front and rear, so despite the entry level status of this bike it still packs a punch. Price: £1,500.
Specialized Camber Elite
The Specialized Camber Elite pushes the price a little due to the inclusion of Avid Elixir 3 RL SL hydraulic disc brakes, which offer improved performance in all conditions over the Tektro kit found on the Comp. You still get the fine tuned performance from the shocks as you would expect, but the RockShox Recon Gold TK fork is just that little bit slicker in its operation and lighter than the Silver edition but still provides 120mm of travel. Whilst the front is the same as the Comp model, the rear derailleur gets upgraded to a Shimano Deore XT. Price: £1,800.
Specialized Camber Expert
The Specialized Camber Expert leads the class when it comes to components and performance. Firstly the M5 alloy frame instils the rider with added confidence when out on the trail thanks to its excellent handling delivered via the sealed cartridge bearing pivots and 132mm dropouts. It is also adorned with far more customised elements than the other Camber models.
The Custom Fox Triad II rear shock is the star of the show thanks to its three position compression switch. This lets you choose between lockout, open and ProPedal modes on the fly for instant gratification and adaptability. The RockShox Reba RL fork with 120mm of travel complements the rear shock well and helps the Camber Expert remain planted on a variety of terrain types.
Custom Avid Elixir 5 SL brakes, Shimano SRAM X7 and Shimano Deore XT & SLX components and 720mm wide All-Mountain low rise handlebars further establish this bike as one to watch. The S-Works Ground Control front tyre and Specialized Ground Control rear tyre are the icing on a well made cake, easily justifying the extra cash you will have to spend to add this range topping Camber model to your cycling collection. Price: £2,000. Whilst we’ve given the range 4 stars, the Camber Expert deserves slightly more at 4.5 stars.
Specialized Camber Video