4iiii Announces New Precision Podiiiium Power Meter Lineup

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Today at Interbike, 4iiii has announced a new product lineup of power meters, the 4iiii Precision Podiiiium.  But because I can’t stand to write Podiiiium throughout this entire article, I’m calling it Podium.  You can thank me later.

The new unit builds on the existing Precision dual sided lineup that’s been around for about a year, you may remember my in-depth review of it last winter.  The majority of the changes in Podium aren’t related to strain gauges though, but rather compatibility and battery tech.

First, we’ve got a switch from coin cell to rechargeable battery.  This follows along with the general industry trend towards power meters leveraging rechargeable batteries.  You can see the waterproof micro-USB port seen here on the pods.  This is internally waterproofed and will have a dust cover where those little copper ports are:

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The rechargeable battery gets 60 hours of battery life, as compared to 100 hours previously with the CR2032 coin cell batteries.  While I personally prefer the coin cell design, others prefer the rechargeable design.  Totally a case of personal preferences, to each their own.

Next, the biggie here is the availability on the three core Shimano crankset lineups.  Previously the dual Precision offering was only available on the Shimano FC-9000 Dura Ace crankset.  Now it’s available on:

– Shimano R9100 Dura-Ace
– Shimano FC-6800 Ultegra
– Shimano FC-8000 Ultegra

Within that, you can do either ‘factory install’ or ‘ride ready’.  Factory install is where you send them your crankset, and they install the 4iiii Precision Podium unit onto it.  Whereas ride ready is when you buy a new crankset from them with everything pre-installed.

Pricing is as follows:

– Shimano FC-8000 Ultegra: $999
– Shimano FC-R9100 Dura-Ace: TBA (announced soon)
– Shimano FC-6800 Ultegra: TBA (announced soon)

Except there’s one minor catch: None of these will be available until Q1 2018, but they could slide earlier.  So if you’re looking for immediate Podium power meter equipage, you’re gonna have to wait till then.  This is largely due to finishing up the rechargeable battery.

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One key benefit here is that they’ll be able to upgrade more folks to dual-sided that previously had a single-sided Precision unit.  Meaning that if you have the single-sided variant of one of the cranksets above, you can now go dual-sided with an upgrade kit.  Whereas up till this point, you basically had to have the brand new FC-9000 crankset to do so (which was more rarely available).

The upgrade cost for existing single-sided Precision owners to go dual-sided is $349 (which they note is a limited time offer).

Last but not least, the new Podium units are thinner profile than before, reducing the thickness from 8.2mm to 7.5mm.

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As noted, these new units don’t start shipping till next year, so I’ll probably circle around that time with a more detailed review to see how things hold up.  Obviously anytime a company uses a micro-USB port on a bike part, I get a bit worried about long-term durability. But there are certainly examples of products in the market already doing so with little issue (such as Favero on their now two-year-old BePro pedals).  Further, with 4iiii headquartered in a place with generally miserably wet, cold and rough winters (Calgary) – I’m more likely to trust they’ve done the research than a company headquartered in Southern California or something.

But again – that’s all things to save for the review.

With that – thanks for reading and stay tuned for plenty more coming up here from Interbike!

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26 Comments

  1. Domen

    A little unclear…. Is the new verison thinner or thicker?

  2. No plans to add more data? BLE power profile supports sending vectors during the pedal stroke like Pioneer’s proprietary Ant protocol.

  3. Gilbraith

    Ray,

    I know the pricing for all groupsets is still tbd, but its not clear what the self install vs factory install price difference is, nor what the single sided starting price point is on the one groupset above which has prices. Can you clarify all prices?

    • Single-sided remains the same at $399, and upgrade pricing for the base is listed down below at $349. The reason there isn’t upgrade prices for everything is that since the full prices aren’t yet known…it’s hard to know upgrade prices. ;)

    • alien8

      ah got it – just asked you this on twitter. I guess contacting them next week might be the best option!

  4. marklemcd

    So to be clear, I have a ride ready left only on my Ultegra 6800 and I can send my crankset to them and they will upgrade me for 349 to the full dual solution?

    Do you know if they replace the left arm device or just add one for the right and they work together?

  5. Scott L

    I’m wondering how the upgrade will work. I have a Precision left side power meter on an Ultegra 6800 crank which i’ve been waiting to upgrade. Will they replace the pod on the left crank arm as part of the upgrade? Or am I going to be stuck with a coin cell battery on the left and a rechargeable on the right?

  6. Eric F

    Finally! Was contemplating jumping ship to get the dual pedal based options.

    If they’re doing the upgrades like how they were doing the precision -> precision pro (dual), they would take out your gen 1 or 2 precision from the non-drive side and put the new models on both sides. I doubt the current precision units will talk well with the new podium units.

  7. fff

    I understood left side sensor is thinner,
    but how about followingcomaptibility?

    1.LEFT with BB-side Shimano Direct mount brake.
    2.RIGHT with Rotor Q-rings or other Asymmetric rings.

  8. HR

    Hey Ray
    Any word on what the limitations around the upgrade offer are? Their website says “eligible FC-R6800 4iiii customers” but no further details.

  9. Gerald Brown

    I would love to see compatibility with some cranks that work with 28/44 (or similar) chain-rings… looks like a good market for crank arm power meters when there’s not much space for a spider based PM…

  10. HdB

    Looks like pedal-based will be the way to go – the few companies that actually do support Campagnolo only support the highest of high ends, and I don’t think replacing my entire groupset for the privilege of being able to fit a powermeter is worth it.

  11. Nathan B

    Ok… so just to confirm, I’ve currently got a single sided Ultegra 6800.

    Can I now upgrade to dual sided?

    Is this the $349, or is that for the DA dual side upgrade?

  12. LittleSaul

    So again nothing for Mountain Bike lovers? Especially Shimano XT cranks would be nice ;-)

  13. spokejunky

    Good initial pass on this and thanks. Would they be able to provide the recharge cycle expectation? Also, is the battery customer serviceable or does it need to be sent back to the manufacturer a la SRM battery servicing?

  14. dizpark

    I am watching this space with interest. As a single side Precision Ultegra FC-6800 user I am interested how the upgrade will work. However, looking at the pricing AND me being in Europe, it is not a slam dunk.

    Most probably limited time upgrade option at $349 refers to factory install (install on my crank). My quick and rough calculation is that for customers in Europe the end cost of upgrade may be somewhere in the region of 450 EUR minimum (postage both ways, VAT and customs). P2Max NGeco 3d24 w/ praxis rings w/o bb works out 790 EUR shipped.

    • RW

      Here’s the reply I got from them on the question of Gen 2 replacement or no:

      Podiiiium will work with Gen2 PRECISION units. For those wanting to save money you can simply add the drive side unit to you existing crankset. We will also have an upgrade available for those that want to have their Gen 2 PRECISION removed and have a full Podiiiium set up. Please fill out this form and we will contact you as more information becomes available.

    • Taylor

      Thanks for asking them! I wonder if the $349 is to get a drive side installation (assuming that requires you to send it in) to go with your old Precision, or if the $349 is for the latter.

      Is that form on the website or did they only send it because you requested it?

  15. Alex

    Come on 4iiii, are the 5800 users being forgotten?! I bought mine in March and was hoping for a upgrade to dual-sided. Does it mean it is not gonna happen?

  16. Jim Behrens

    “you buy a new crankset from them with everything pre-installed”

    Completely incorrect. You can not “pre-install” anything, that would mean it was installed before it was installed. It is simply “installed’.
    It would be correct to write “you buy a new crankset from them with everything installed”.

    • “Completely incorrect” is incorrect. You are either correct, or not correct. Completely incorrect is redundant. It’s akin to saying “the flight is completely full”.

  17. Sebastian

    Oh the burn.

  18. Jacky Wong

    hope there is more news on the $349 upgrade to dual sided. I bought the unit from CleverTraining.