Fox 34 vs. Rockshox Pike – Fork Comparison

Fox 34 vs. Rockshox Pike – Fork Comparison

Ladies and Gentlemen what we have here
is a battle of the greats Fox 34 RockShox Pike 2018 what’s the
difference which one’s better let’s get into it so to preface this video we’re not going
to get too crazy and all the technical details of what’s inside of these forks
or exact tiny little differences there’s going to be a link below to the blog
post so there’s a lot more technical details and sort of run through on all
that sort of stuff and a little more direct comparison so we’re gonna do kind
of a broad overview of each fork some of the new features for 2018 and some of
the differences and similarities between them and you know which ones better
which unfortunately there might not be an answer for that one they might just
be slightly different so to start out let’s talk about the Pike. The Pike’s got
thirty five-millimeter stanchions for 2018 they made a couple minor changes
graphics, I believe it’s now boost only so you can’t get it in a non boost
anymore, a couple small changes the top cap right here where you put your
air in, you can now take it off with a cassette tool so it’s a little bit more
mechanic friendly which is pretty nice if you know you’re servicing the thing
or needing to remove that cap when you’re taking out volume spacers that is
much easier to remove now so typical cassette tool is going to take that out
so you can adjust your you know volume spacers there volume spacers are an adjustment in both of these forks now just like they were in previous
years so RockShox calls them tokens Fox calls them volume spacers, that’s all
they really are is they’re air volume spacers so what they do is you can add
multiple ones or take them out depending on which fork you have it may or may not
come with some inside the fork already but that’s to change how progressive
each fork is and what I mean by progressive is the ramp up of that fork
so if you decrease the air volume in the chamber so both of these are gonna have
their air chambers and the left stanchion if you decrease the air volume
that’s gonna make it more progressive So, it ramps up more so you’re still gonna
retain that supple you know nice cushiness off the top and then as you bottom out
into the fork so say like you hit a jump or a drop and you’re bottoming out in
the fork how much it ramps up into stiffness, that’s what those tokens are
gonna do so the more tokens the less air volume and the more progressive more
ramp up the fork is going to have both of these have that ability to adjust
tokens volume spacers and I believe both of them do come with those in the box as
well and their little small plastic pieces so they’re really cheap to buy so
that’s a couple of the similarities between the forks. Some more similarities
they both are gonna have three clicks of high-speed compression open medium firm
I think RockShox likes to call it open peddle and firm that’s this adjustment
right here on your damper side on the right leg so open medium firm similar on
both Forks and again that’s high speed compression so that’s gonna give
you like your overall feel of the fork so if it’s in firm it’s almost locked
out and you know it’s like if you’re totally pedaling on the road or
something that’s where you might need that I personally leave mine in open
all the time I don’t have much of an issue with bobbing and I run my
suspension a little stiffer than probably recommended so I don’t you know
ever really have the need to move that sometimes if I’m riding a trail with a
bit more jumps or like big features on it or something I might click into
that medium mode just to kind of keep the fork higher up and not want to dive
so much if I’m you know riding my trail bike on something that’s yeah I probably
should be riding it downhill bike on which I get into every now and then
so both forks do as well have low speed compression so low speed compression is
this knob on top of the high speed compression there’s a whole bunch of
clicks that you can go through here each of them have I think over ten clicks of
low speed compression, in our experience and in all the years I’ve been riding
bikes and all the people I’ve met, almost nobody I would say 2% of people use
low-speed compression it’s a pretty rare adjustment to use if you turn it all the
way on you can really feel how it feels it feels like the fork gets full of sand
almost and it’s something that’s gonna keep the fork from diving and make it
just you know really stiff and firm and kind of feel horrible but that’s a feel
you kind of want if you’re really pumping into corners or jumps or say you
have one of these Forks on a slalom bike or a dirt jump bikes you’re probably to
crank that low-speed compression all the way up, where as a typical trail bike like either one of these you want that soft supple plush
feeling and you want that low-speed compression all the way off and again
it’s for rare use cases that you’re gonna use low-speed compression and kind
of rare rider cases too so some more you know super talented riders who were
really messing with their suspension settings and super fast guys that are
hitting a lot of jumps and just slamming their bikes into corners, those are the
people who are really going to be playing around with the high speed and
the low speed compression whereas the majority, vast majority of riders are
probably gonna leave this in the open setting and leave the low-speed
compression all the way off and again that’s what we recommend, almost everyone
that rolls through the shop here just general rider out there having fun on
their bike is probably gonna have the low-speed compression completely off so
they can really get the most out of that fork when it comes to it being nice and
supple and plush off of the top so that’s some of the similarities between
these Forks as far as some of the differences go the Fox 34 is a little
bit lighter I believe we weighed both of these ones right here and it’s two
ounces lighter for the Fox 34 that’s gonna vary that again you know
these both have the quick-release axles on them so you could shave a
little weight if you want to put the bolt on axle on there but Fox 34, a touch
lighter depending on you know which variant you get whether it’s twenty
27.5 or 29 or 150 or 120 mil travel how many you know volume
spaces you have in there that’s going to add the tiniest bit of weight to it so
very similar in weight range like I mentioned the Pikes got a thirty five
mil stanchion and that’s the diameter of the stanchion right here and the Fox 34
has got a thirty four mil stanchion and again diameter of the stanchion right
here so a couple different price points you’re gonna see these things that they
make the factory series 34 which is what we’ve got sitting here and the pike and
move the RCT3’s are the ones we have sitting here which is the the higher-end
top-tier model so a couple different variants their Fox is gonna be coming in
a performance elite as well which is a black one which has got the same damper
and air spring but just a black stanchion so a little bit cheaper cost
to there that’s what I’m riding my own bike right now. Price points so that is
an interesting topic to talk about so the behind the scenes in the
bike industry if you’re not in the bike industry RockShox got a lot better
distribution and what I mean by that is a lot more shops, online shops, local bike
shops have a lot easier time accessing and buying and stocking RockShox Forks
because they’re available at a whole bunch of different distributors that
bike shops work with, Fox typically you’re only been able to buy it direct
from Fox as a retailer so you’re gonna see probably more broad available
selection of pikes and all the different sizes and variations all over the
internet and at your local bike shop it’s gonna be a little bit harder to
find a Fox 34 although Fox being so popular these days
and making such great suspension they do have you know a lot of product out there
because a lot of shops are stocking it us included because we know it’s a great
product and people love it and people buy it so if that’s the case you do see them
out there, you’re typically gonna see more sales on RockShox that’s another thing
again there people might have overstock or they might have just ordered too many
and want to be getting rid of them so price point is something consider you’re
probably gonna find RockShox a little bit cheaper here and there whereas I
think the retails are really close together but you’re probably more likely
to see sales going on, on pikes again that’s kind of hit or miss but in our
experience in the industry and you know running a shop for several years that’s
kind of the the way that it has been in the past and probably the way it will
continue to go in the future there usually seems to be a lot more Pike’s
out available on the market which kind of drives the price down a little bit so
again that’s that’s something to consider there which one’s better than
the other we’ve talked about a lot of the similarities and the differences
they are very similar really you know as we mentioned they have a lot of the same
features almost identical in weight they obviously look different sort of
different reputations that come with each brand, Fox is absolutely known for
high quality incredible quality control and you know we can vouch for that too I
think that the warranty rate on all the Fox products that roll through here is
microscopic it’s super tiny in RockShox as well but we do typically have a
little bit more warranty issues with RockShox products than Fox I would say
the tiniest bit both of them are stout and you know these are complicated
products not as complicated as dropper posts
but they are complicated products so either brands going to potentially have
the tiniest bit of warranty possibility but very very slim and in both of these
guys you know these are the top two suspension companies out there right now
as far as size for the mountain bike world so they’ve got incredible quality
control going on there I’ve spent a good amount of time riding both of these
forks I’ll tell you some of the notable differences that I’ve noticed I feel
that the pike is a touch stiffer it is a thirty five mil stanchion there’s a few
different things that factor into how a forks gonna feel stiffness wise but in
in my personal opinion I do feel like a pike is a little bit stiffer than a
thirty four I was really impressed with the 2018
Fox 34 because one change they did make there from the 2017 was the Evol chamber
so it’s a technical thing that’s going on in the
air spring and allowing the fork to be a little more plush a little more mid
stroke support and have a little bit more ramped up that’s kind of smoother
and not so it’s not such a harsh ramp up again kind of a hard thing to explain
again link below to the blog post where we talk a little bit more about the
technical stuff behind the internals of each fork but I kind of loved both Forks
if you were to ask me back in 2017 which one I preferred I would have gone with
the pike I thought it just was overall a little stiffer a little bit more plush a
little bit more smooth of that ramp up I think these things are neck-and-neck
now when I first rode my 34 on my bike the 2018 version I was incredibly
impressed with how smooth it was really enjoyed the thing and in was shocked and
really thought wow this is like a complete contender with the pike now
whereas before you know a year ago year before that I wouldn’t have quite said
that but I think I will now so when you’re talking which one’s better than
the other there’s no one winner as you guys you know have heard they have a ton
of similarities very few differences there you know with the forks having the
same adjustments nearly identical weights
they’re both great they both work amazing you really can’t go wrong with
either one you know we’ve seen almost no problems with either of them they are
still 2018’s so as far as service intervals or anything like that goes we
haven’t, we don’t have a long-term test like a one-year two-year test because
they’re brand new so we haven’t had a ton of time on these things but again
they’re very similar to last year and even the year
before Forks and and they last a long time and I believe both of them got like
a 50 hour service interval that’s on there as well so there is no one winner
unfortunately they’re both amazing they both work great they both have basically
identical adjustments and you can’t go wrong with either one so for me
personally I kind of like to be matchy-matchy so if I’m running a Rockshox rear shock I kind of like to run a RockShox fork if I’m running a Fox rear
shock I kind of like to run a Fox fork kind of like that with drive trains as well but again you know these things are complete competitors they’re both
phenomenal they’re both you know at the top of their game as far as suspension
forks go you can’t go wrong with either one you’re gonna love them both, I
guarantee that. Thank you guys for watching leave us a comment down below let us know which fork you like better which one you ride right now or would
buy if you’re gonna buy one soon and hit subscribe as well, take it easy.

100 thoughts on “Fox 34 vs. Rockshox Pike – Fork Comparison

  1. Love my Pike. Seems to me Fox has the name. Otherwise Rockshox is right there with them. I prefer Rockshox, personally. Doesn't mean I'm opposed to Fox though.

  2. One thing to keep in mind, Rockshox only sells parts for their forks three years after they are made, but Fox supports theirs for a long while.

  3. I have a Pike on my 2015 FSR and it has been rock solid throughout the years. Had one minor warranty issue with the lockout lever up top becoming loose. Overall, it's been a great shock and a fantastic performer on the trails. It definitely smooths out the bumps very well and has done everything I need it to. Before the Rockshox, I had a Fox Float, which was also flawless as well but I always felt the Rockshox was a little more comfortable ride. I also have an Ohlins RFX36 on my newest bike and that too is a great performing shock. From a performance standpoint, I like the Ohlins a little better than the Pike or Fox because of the air charged ramp up chamber; no tokens or spacers needed and you can totally customize the shock on the fly. I can go off 5ft ledges and pretty large rocks and it feels like I went over a small curb; truly amazing the way this shock smooths out the trails. I never felt such plush suspension on a bike in my life. All of these companies have great products and I'd be happy with any of them. To that end, I like to try different things and I am not loyal to anyone brand but just like the video said, I like to match the front shock with the rear; same brand and same performance level.

  4. Great video, Pike RCT3 here, and that's one of the more useful explanations of low speed compression I have heard, good stuff

  5. How is the stiffness in cornering on the Pike? I'll be upgrading within the next month to either the Fox 36 or Pike.

  6. This is possibly one of the most illinformed suspension explainations I've ever seen. You have absolutely no clue what you're talking about.

  7. I have a Fox Factory 34 (2016) and my rebound adjustment dial on the bottom just froze up… Have you seen this before?

  8. Pedaling forces will impact the suspension. But I thought these will be impacts you can module with the LSC. So, at 2:45 I wonder that HSC refers to lockout.
    When I feel my bike too plush in berms or takeoffs, I increase LSC and not HSC and as far as I can tell increasing LSC helps to get a more firm suspension in the mentioned cases… I expect HSC to increase stiffness of on hard impacts like landings or sudden hard impacts (like hitting a curb at decent speed)

  9. If they are so similar the the take away for me is get to know your fork better and it can dramatically change your ride

  10. I'd like to see a head-to-head of those two against hands down the best suspension in the world… Öhlins RFX

  11. i got my pike rct3 160mm 2016 for little under 500 euros. i love it so so much (it was an OEM fork)

  12. As of 2017 I preferred Rockshock and love it on my Trek Slash. Much smoother and more plush. But the new Fox sounds great too.

  13. I use a Rock Shox on my carbon hard tail and a Fox on my Specialized Epic. Both bikes have 26' wheels. My heart just isn't into those ugly and heavy 29' wheels. I don't use either of my bikes for off roading anymore. They both have 1' Richey tires for urban riding. Living in the city it's just much easier to ride than pumping those big mountain bike tires. I must admit living in Europe is much more biker friendly than being back at home in the states. You'll get your ass killed i the states on a bike!!! Living in Germany and biking is easy. Nice video.

  14. Great review, very informative and I love the transparency and completely agree. I’d just match the rear or if on a budget I’d just look for a RS on sale.

  15. I'm pretty sure what this video calls "High Speed Compression" is wrong. Those "open medium firm" / "open pedal firm" dials have nothing to do with adjusting high speed compression (HSC). Correct me if I'm wrong.

  16. I have both but I'm prefer Rockshox is more soft and is more heavy duty than Fox, Rockshox is long-lasting.

  17. Less warranty problems with fox? WTF. Fox 34 Talas CTD was just horrible. Never had problems with any RS forks so far.

  18. @5:05 2 to 3 clicks in is where you want to be. It takes the vibration and harshness out of the ride.
    @8:30 Fox warranty service or any support ends sharply at 5 years. I Mailed one in and waited 3 months to learn that.
    Both ride great, but at least you can service and get parts for RockShox after 5 years.

  19. Thanks for the video. Dirtlabs is upgrading to the fox 34 for me. Sounds like I will be very happy with it.

  20. Great videos. Was only looking at the handlebar one the other day. 😊
    I'm confused by the HSC and LSC I have set by local shop although I might have recorded it wrongly…
    It just doesn't make much sense. Fox 36 factory…

    0 being fully dampened
    HSC set to"4" so 22 clicks would be fully open with no dampening.
    LSC set to "25" so 26 clicks would be fully open with no dampening.

    I understand LSC being open would effect slow weight transfer and HSC effecting fast impacts…

    Just would like some views on this current setup..

    I'm quite a small rider at 67 kg…

    Lol forward to any replies .

  21. I'm a freerider and most of my riding is based around big drops and jumps and high speed, with that being said I have ridden both and I feel the pike handles big hits better but doesn't perform as good as the fox in the chop fast stuff. To me the fox was a better trail fork but I don't ride trails much. I like both but prefer the pike of the two and I have had great success with rockshox products.

  22. That's cool dudes. Watched the Pike, Lyrik, Yari…W'sTD vid, earlier, equally as good. The end had me thinking that you're Hollywood trained (in a good way (artistically)), you could be in a re-boot of That 70s Show 😁 all good! I think you've hired bikes out to BKXC when he's been down South!?!? If I'm ever in CA, again (from the UK), I'll hit you guys up for a hire shredder.

  23. I LOVE THESE VIDEOS! YOU GUYS HAVE YOUR OWN NICHE AND DONT ADD IN DILUTION OF WHAT A TYPICAL MTB YOUTUBER DOES! can you please make a vid comparison between DPX2 vs. DPS evol? Is it worth upgrading to DPX2? I have a tallboy setup 130 front and 110 in back 27.5+. I’ve heard DPX2 is smoother and more plush but I wonder if it would still be worth it on my end since I only have 110 travel on the rear? @worldwide cyclery

  24. I have 2 pikes cause i have 2 enduro bikes and i had 3 fox 34 i sold 2 of them for 4000 each and got 8000$ and a day later i bought a santa cruz nomad 4 c and put hope parts and put my 1 fox 34 and made a new bike. (IN FACT BOTH FORKS ARE AWESOME)

  25. just a comment, suspension forks are way more complex than dropper posts! any engineering grad can design a dropper that will work just fine. Suspensions have a lot more fine tuning to it!

  26. I like the 34 better. I have had both and I think new they are very close but…..two months latter the fox feels so much smoother.

  27. I have been mountain biking for close to thirty years now and rode on Rockshock , Manitou, and Fox.The quality of the Rockshock is not the same as it was when it was made in the USA. Fox has a very consistant ride and production quality that has for the last 15 years been my choice. Manitou use to be a very good performer too. I am not even sure if Manitou is still in business for itself any more but they were good back in the day.

  28. Why don't we skip the features and marketing and instead compare internal components??? Also, a suspension dyno would bare out the actual performance differences. Also 1 mm in fork stanchion is insignificant and is only market differentiation between the two brands.

  29. MRP Ribbon Air changed up the game and made these two (or at least the Pike) bottom feeders.
    Check it out.

    I never got the Pike to work good. It felt harsh and lacked suppleness. Even with the bigger negative air chamber it wasn't very good. On top of that air leaked into the lowers making it even worse.
    The MRP Ribbon has got independent Pos and Neg air spring adjustment just like RockShox and Fox used to have. So, they went for a simpler more stupid design. For those who are into setting up the suspension just right the MRP is for you.

  30. My low compression is set close to max… I'm a pro thank you thank you… But it feels better given that i'm more of a heavy rider …rocshox for me

  31. I like both. My current bike has a Fox 32. First time I tried adjusting the dampening, the knob broke off and the metal rode it connects to. Dampening got messed up and I couldn't adjust it anymore. Fox would not cover it, so I had to either pay for a new fork or new dampener. A little outside the warranty window. A little upsetting, but what can you do?

  32. What about Manitou shocks? I hardly see any videos on Manitou shocks. Its my understanding that they are right up there with Rock Shox and Fox as far as quality goes. Yet I rarely see any bikes with Manitou shocks.

  33. In Switzerland it's alot easyer for the bikeshops to get a fox fork then a rockshox because the importer is alot better

  34. If it was the lyric vs the 36, i would totally go for the rockshox. But since the bike is not as quality, im gonna have to go with the fox 36. Both great forks though.

  35. My old 2010 Remedy had 150mm float 32 forks, comfortable and took everything I threw at them but they were very twangy!! I'd like to ride a 35/36 fork to feel the difference.

  36. After breaking 4 fox products due to warranty issues in the past 2 years (32SC Performance Elite Fit 4 damper corroded, 34 Factory Fit 4 damper corroded, 34 Performance snapped air shaft, & DPS evol broken valve bodies) I switched over to full Rockshox with a Monarch RC3+ and Lyrik RC2 and couldn't be happier! Feels so much for supple off the top while feeling bottomless.

  37. Thanks for putting these videos together. It's nice to see honest comparisons vs just videos about the (supposedly) latest and greatest thing coming out.

  38. Hm….I'm running a pike up front, a cane creek db air outback, and xt brakes. Like em all I guess
    *got a fox transfer post too lol

  39. I own both. Fox 34 is far superior at small bumps and chatter, not as good on big deep impacts. I think its a better fork in stock form vs Pike. It is harder to get parts for and service. (FOX unreliable tech support) It uses 2 different fork oils for each leg vs one for the pike. I find the Fox fork needs to be serviced less frequently than Pike. For cold weather riders, I have rode in really cold temps and had zero pressure or performance issues with my Fox. The Pike is useless in freezing temps.

    The Pike gets better the harder you push it. It also absorbs big impacts and has a linear ramp up. Because I am a lighter 165lbs rider the Pike needs a revalved right out of the box. I also encourage new pike owners to disassemble pike and check the oil levels. Mine came almost dry. This has happened with several Rockshock products I have purchased over the years.

    So if you ride more trail or xc and prefer a more premium build quality I would go Fox 34. If you weight over 170lbs, ride enduro or more aggressive trail, like easy/cheap frequent service intervals and are a Sram fan boy get the Pike.

  40. Hi Jeff, pike ultimate 150 & 150 Lyric ultimate what's the difference in performance & weight for these beauties ! 😎👌👍
    For SB 130 custom build & possible going for SB 150 but the Lyric on this ? 😎👍🚵🌲🌲🌲

  41. I wonder if the slightly higher number of warranty claims on rockshox correlates to the fact that rockshox offers alot more budget models than fox?

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