Is it really worth it?

Hi there!
Last months I’m wondering if it would be worth it to update my zwift set up. Nowadays, I’m using a spinning bike with assioma powermeter. I’ve been reading about smart trainers in order to buy one of them, but I always wonder the same thing, is it worth it? Would i feel different things? Would i train better? Or would be quite the same thing?
For me the ERG mode is not enough to change…
Thank you in advance!

Until a few weeks ago I was using a very basic trainer with a Quarq powermeter. I upgraded to Wahoo Snap (Wheel on) smart trainer that was reduced as a black friday deal. The main thing I have noticed is that the ride feel is much better. I am able to produce more power when climbing this is probably down to improved ride feel and because the trainer is adjusting the resistence which in turn makes be select a different gear.

(Note I am still usinjg the Quarq for power readings).

I have only used ERG mode for the Zwift step test and it worked well. I can see it would be great for longer intervals If you regularly use Zwift’s training rides.

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A good/accurate direct drive smart trainer is awesome.

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hi, at the end of the day it is personal choice you get out of it what you put into it , i ave a wahoo kicker direct drive and i love it.
persanaly i find a smart trainer interacts with zwift makes it more relistic .

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“Worth it” is very much a personal value judgement.

I recently went from a Tacx Vortex to a Tacx Neo. The Neo cost around £1000, but to me it haas been worth it. When I ride at 100% trainer difficulty, it can simulate any current gradient in Zwift. I also trust the power reading more than the Vortex.

You have accurate power, so that latter point probably doesn’t matter to you. But you will feel different things. It becomes a more immersive experience because when you’re riding up a hill in the game, you can feel it in your legs (assuming you haven’t set trainer difficulty to 0).

Since you say erg mode itself isn’t enough to change. I don’t know if you’d train better. I guess if you’re used to holding a set power on a dumb trainer, you won’t benefit much from erg mode anyway. (I’ve no sound basis for supposing this - I’m not a coach or physiologist).

If you’re not interested in erg mode, not interested in “road feel” (Tacx Neo), not interested in fake hills (increased resistance, Wahoo Climb), not in need of more accurate power etc. then it’s probably not worth it.

Your best bet would be to find a local friend with a smart trainer, or a local bike shop with a Zwift setup, hop on and try it out. You might just fall in love with it.


This is a hard question.

I used an very old trainer for over 3 years and I dit a lot of hours/km on the bike using Zwift. I recently got a Saris H3, I waited so long because i had the same thoughts as you. It is a lot of money.

I never had ERG and I did not think I missed out on a lot, now that i have it I think it is nice, it will make my workouts easier.

The question is do you have a dedicated bicycle to put on the trainer. Having is dedicated bike on the trainer is in my opinion more valuable than ERG or simulated hilles.


Hi Ibon,
I switched to a smart trainer almost a year ago and even though I really liked my
previous set up, I have never gone back to it.
For me ERG mode was a revelation, the way it totally does all the thinking for you is excellent, but to be honest I don’t use workouts much.

I’m sure a smart trainer will feel better in many ways but, I think the best advice I can give you is, think about how much you will use the smart trainer and how
important it is to up grade.
For me cycling/fitness is one of my main interests so I can always justify the
thought of an upgrade, even if I can’t afford it. (I just write it on my “want” list)
Good luck. “Ride On”


Thank you! I have gathered a very useful information from you. A real road feel can be a good reason… :slight_smile: Besides, I know a neighbour who has tacx neo. So I think I’m going to ask him for trying out, as Daren has suggested and then I’ll make a decission.

Have a nice day!

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