Smart trainers

I’m trying to work out whether to upgrade my elite classic trainer to a smart trainer. Am I likely to get a more realistic ride out of Zwift if I do? I’m currently using my trainer on setting three which they reccomend but I don’t find it gives a realistic feel for gradient etc: I’m being serious when I say I can average 90 plus rpm on 52/12 all day and I’m 63… Something ain’t kosher.

would a smart trainer change this and why? I’ve been looking at the elite quobo B+

Well a controllable trainer means that when you’re going up a hill, the resistance will increase, and when you’re going downhill, it will decrease.  I’m using a Tacx Bushido, and find the way Zwift controls it both for free rides and workouts superb - other training apps seem a bit jerky when you come to a hill, the resistance goes from 0 - 8% in one go for example, Zwift has a nice gradual feel to it.  I was using Elite rollers before I got the Tacx (not for zwift), I went for the tacx specifically to use with Zwift.

Brilliant. Thankyou Russell. I was hoping that this would be the case. So Zwift actually alters the settings? That’s good. I’ve used the ride fit videos before and you’re told when to alter the resistance, but if Smart trainers work this way with Zwift, brilliant.

thanks for this and your feelings about the Bushido.

does anyone else have views on others please?

I have started using a Bushido Smart and it rides fine on the regular Zwift course. It regulates the resistance fine and it feels smooth going through Wattopia’s rolling hills. 6-8% feels pretty realistic.

Having said that, today I tried one of the interval workouts that have a set 3X ~630w and the resistance at this point pretty much locks out, pretty impossible to pedal without the brake stuttering. I may need to try this again. I have calibrated the trainer a few days ago, but not today. It may need to be calibrated before every ride and I neglected to do that.



630w is going to be tough.  The controllable trainers support a mode called ERG, which means you don’t have to worry about the gears - Zwift sets the desired power output, you pedal, and the trainer will adjust it’s resistance to meet the desired power.  If you’re in a the middle of a 630w session and you just cant get the pedals turning, ERG mode will disable, you can then use the gears to get going again, and build up your power in the normal way (building up speed, going through the gears), then ERG mode comes back on again.

This is great advice lads Thankyou. I’m looking forward to trying it when I get a smart trainer. Meanwhile the Bushido is in front, but that’s only two of you, so I’d love to hear from more of you

Yeah, I had a chance to look at the workout more closely and that 3X interval is intended to be MAX power. So somehow the software translated that to be upwards of 600w. And yes, the ERG was disabled after I stopped pedaling since the brake was skipping. After I got going again, the software tried one more time the next 600w interval, then just gave up when the brake was stuttering and skipped the rest. Just need to play with the settings.


I am using a Computrainer which I bought used about 11 years ago. It is dated technology but has been bombproof for over a decade. I’ve only had to replace one cable. It is a pain compared to the new kids on the block as it is wired to a computer. The Computrainer software only works on Windows machines. However it works very well with Zwift on both Windows and Mac machines. I’ve thought about upgrading to the latest trainers (Wahoo Kickr or Tacx Neo) but can’t justify the price when my old system works very well. You can probably find a used one at a very cheap price as everyone is upgrading - except me!

Thanks all of you. The Tackx Bushido looks a good buy, but no one in the UK has them in stock right now. I love Jim’s reply above…great attitude but I think I’m going to have a prowl on eBay. That said, I had a great ride today using my Elite classic,but I’m pretty set to go down the Smart trainer route now 

I had no trouble getting a Bushido Smart in the UK, in stock at suppliers rather than stores but makes little difference.

I’ll echo the above reviews as well, really smooth fell to the gradient changes and they seem to happen in the right places as well - some users on other smart trainers seem to suffer from a lag between arriving on the hill on screen and the trainer catching up.

I didn’t realise how much better a smart trainer would be to be honest, my previous tactic was generally to ride at a given power and just maintain that over the course of a lap.  That works on a purely technical level but once you need to work the gears etc and can feel the difference when you crest a hill or get in a draft situation it becomes much more engaging.

Thanks John. That’s really very helpful indeed. I’m very much convinced by the Bushido and need to do something fairly soon, because my old mag trainer is “acting up” I’ve looked at Wiggle, Evans, cycle surgery, Ribble and Chain reaction. All are showing no stock right now and Wiggle as usual are far and away the cheapest I could find.

ill persevere thankyou

I set a stock alert on wiggle and it came in before they said it was due, so I managed to get one of I think 6 total they received in that month.  The rest had gone within a couple of days.

Zwift has another setting I found - you can scale the resistance, so you can make it easier all round or harder - obviously “easier” just means you can pedal easier with less resistance, so you’ll be generating less power and hence going slower on the course…


I got one last week from Rutland Cycles with-in 2 days really good price too. Very good service (Tacx Bushido). I am going to do the FTP test tonight but calitbration and software upgrade was east enough although I was pretty miffed at have to use an IPhone to update the software. It wont work with Zwift unless software is at 3.17. also if you are going to do all of your training on Zwift there is no need to buy the TTS 4 PC software all you need is the Ant+ dongle plugged in and the software upgrade.

Hope this helps regards


Thankyou Damian. I didn’t think about going there. Their Grafham water branch is a 15 minute drive away


Does anyone know if Elite Qubo Power Smart B+ Trainer adjusts resistance when going up hills.  I know the Zwift site has this trainer in the Smart trainer category. But the price makes me think it doesn’t comply.  the



It doesn’t. The one on the Zwift website is Qubo Digital Smart B+, not Qubo Power Smart B+ ( )

Thank you George for the response.

I’m also looking to buy the Bushido T2780 for use with Zwift. Two questions to those in the know:

  1. How quiet is it? I’m using an Elite Crono Gel at the moment which is pretty quiet - I don’t want to swap to a noisy machine.

  2. I don’t have any Apple products, I’ve got an Ant+ dongle for my PC. I understand this will work but will I need an iPad/iPhone to calibrate/update the Bushido? I don’t fancy shelling out another £140 for the PC software.