After weighing up the options I had pretty much settled on a Specialized Camber - good looking, reasonable weight and the price was in the ball park. Despite wrestling with some figures and finding some good deals on groupsets I couldn't make the numbers add up for a custom bike that was near the money wanted to spend. Then at the last minute I was referred by a friend to the Canyon Bikes website. Not the prettiest frames but not bad and the angles looked right and the spec was insane for the money. Canyon are a german brand who sell direct - hence no one can touch them on the spec. What MTB confirmed that the bike was indeed a steal and awarded it trail bike of the year. A few clicks later and a two week wait it arrived.
Wheels - Mavic Crossmax ST's, very nice, complete with hideous black spoke protector behind the cassette. Despite the risk to the expensive and cool looking spokes I think this will have to go.
This is the biggest bag of manuals etc I have ever seen, the bag includes a cool plastic torque wrench for attaching the bars and a shock pump, one more for the shock pump collection then.
Just incase you forgot Canyon are a german brand. The label says 'Attention' then some other stuff I can't translate, looks important.
Its very black. Welds look very neat and the anodised black looks stealthy and cool. The internal cabling gives the bike a clean look and a possible tricky maintenance issue later on but generally I think it looks pretty sweet, the tapered headtube is a nice future proof addition.
Given the spec for the money, the frame pretty much comes for free!
I took a short lap of the local trails to check it out before it got dark. First impressions are good, the bike is really light - It weighs around 25 / 26lb so pretty good for a 120mm trail bike, staggering for a £2200 trail bike really. The bike feels eager up the hills, the XO shifting is great, the range on the 10 speed rear cassette is noticeably better than 9 more so than I expected, I hardly used the front mech, which is a bit of a waste as the front shifting is the best I have ever experienced, SRAM have done some great things with the front rings and shifting ramps, very impressive.
I can't really comment on the suspension yet, both are top end fox units but they need some bedding in, and I need to read the manuals.
First big outing next weekend so Ill write a proper review then.. rather than just what it looks like.