Unstable power with Elite Direto XR-T in ERG mode

I’ve recently upgraded to an Elite Direto XR-T and am struggling to get it working properly. I’m running Zwift on a MacBook Pro (with the Companion app on Android), using Bluetooth to connect. The first time I used the trainer, I did a spindown calibration in Zwift, after warming up for 10-15 minutes.

Today was the first time I tried a workout in ERG mode and it was a complete mess. The power values were fluctuating wildly, +/- 10-15 W or more from the target value while holding a steady cadence. This lasted all the way through a 1-hour workout – so frustrating! At its worst, the target power was 120 W at 90 rpm, and my power was rising as high as 146 W before falling back down to ~100 W again. Honestly, my old wheel-on trainer was much more pleasant to use in terms of power stability.

After the workout, I tried calibrating the trainer again, this time using the My E-Training desktop app and it gave an offset of 6670, which exactly matches the calibration offset on the sticker on the trainer.

What else can I do? Is it possibly due to an unstable Bluetooth connection, or is there something else I should check before shelling out for an ANT+ dongle?

I just set up my Elite Direto XR-T and Zwift and took it for a spin and FTP test. Seems like I ran into the same problem.

When trying to maintain a steady watt output I could feel the resistance fluctuate constantly (screenshot attached).

I run Zwift on a MacBook. Companion on iPhone.

Does anyone knows whether it’s the Bluetooth connection? Zwift? Or the trainer itself? All help is much appreciated.

Since I made my original post, I’ve done a bit more research and this seems to be a “feature” of the Direto XR. Essentially, the trainer’s precise power measurement capability also translates to excessive fine-tuning (i.e. the yo-yo compensation) in ERG mode. This seems highly undesirable, IMO; just because the trainer can measure the power at fine-grained intervals doesn’t mean that it should automatically update the resistance in reaction to every little fluctuation… But it can be mitigated to a certain extent by increasing the power smoothing factor in the trainer settings. I’ve managed to get the fluctuations down to about 5-10%, which is more tolerable, although certainly not ideal. (Note that this is absolutely useless for short sprint intervals.) There is a very long discussion about it on the Elite forums, but it doesn’t seem like Elite are actually doing anything useful to correct this issue in the firmware.

http://forum.elite-it.com/viewtopic.php?f=34&t=2530&sid=138fd13c6c6e0bbe7496682031852ece

1 Like

Hi Kate,

Thanks for the update. I’ve read through the forum and power smoothing seems to help a little. But the compensating remains very annoying…like someone constantly hitting and releasing the brake. Seems like there is nothing more to do about it.

I’ll see whether I get used to it in a week or I am going to return it and go for a Wahoo Kickr Core. If I knew about this ‘feature’ I would have gone for the Core right away.

Thanks for the info, cheers,
Tom

Hi Tom,
That does seem really annoying. My Direto doesn’t usually overcompensate to the point where I can actually feel the difference in the resistance! I’m just bothered by the numbers fluctuating on the screen. :sweat_smile:

Have you tried contacting Elite support? Some people in that thread I linked above did have some success after getting in touch with a support tech and doing some diagnostic tests. It might be worth a shot.

Hi Kate,

Thanks, I will try to smooth the power and see if it helps. Otherwise I might reach out to the support of Elite or return the trainer. Either way, looking forward to staying in shape this winter.

Thank you for the help,
Tom