When I met with Tacx a couple of months ago, I asked them if they were going to release an update to the NEO. They looked at me and smiled and said nothing. At that moment, I knew something was cooking at Tacx headquarter in the Netherlands. After all, we haven’t seen a new NEO since 2015 and this trainer was due for an update. Actually, I was totally ok with Tacx not updating the NEO because I did spend $1,699 to get mine at that time and wasn’t ready to drop that kind of money again.
These are all the updates with the NEO 2 smart trainer:
- Capacitive cadence sensor
- Left & right power measurement
- Pedal stroke analysis
- Increased axle compatibility
- Improved and faster electronics, for:
- Smoother, more responsive resistance control
- A more silent resistance unit
- New features to be added in the future
The NEO 2 features Tacx’s blue color at the bottom and better internal components. They also added a “capacitive” cadence sensor.
In the original NEO, cadence was estimated. It was good but not perfect but with the NEO 2, instead of estimating cadence, Tacx built a magnetless cadence detection system. According to Ray Maker, “the company has created a magnetless cadence detection system inside the NEO that can detect objects passing by both sides of it. While it can detect all sorts of objects, the strongest object that passes by each pedal stroke is the spindle of the pedal, which allows them to start tracking the stroke and exact angle measurements.”
This makes the NEO, the second smart trainer with an actual cadence detection system built into the trainer. TechnoGym did something similar with their MyCycling direct drive trainer which I’ve reviewed here. That cadence detection system in the MyCycling trainer was very accurate and until now, no other company did this with their smart trainer.
The NEO 2 comes with an improved chip and better components to make it more responsive, and quieter. Also, it looks like Tacx is planning on adding additional features that will only be available on the NEO 2.
Left & right power measurement, and pedal stroke analysis are already available in the current NEO. Tacx added these features last December via a firmware update. However, those analyses are only available using the Tacx Training app. According to Tacx, the NEO 2 pedal analysis and the left and right power measurements should be available to third-party devices or applications.
Also, like the NEO, it is equipped with Dynamic inertia. In contrast to the mass inertia of a flywheel, Dynamic inertia compensates for weight, speed, and angle of inclination, improving the cycling feeling significantly.
The NEO 2 is equipped with the same resistance unit as the NEO. It’s able to simulate incline gradients up to 25% and sprints up to 2,200 Watts. Also, the NEO and NEO 2 is probably one of the best trainers that can provide maximum resistance when cycling at low speeds, small gears, and very steep climbs.
The NEO 2 Smart doesn’t require an external power source as it generates its own energy. Therefore you can train anywhere you want without having to carry your own power supply.
PRICE AND AVAILABILITY
The NEO 2 is available to order today if you are in Europe. For the USA, Canada and the rest of the world, you will have to wait until mid-Decemberember.
The NEO will retail for $1,399 or €1299,00 | £ 1199,00
You can find and order the NEO 2 at CleverTraining today.
- Max resistance: 2200 W
- Power accuracy: < 1%
- Max. simulated slope: 25%
- Mass inertia: 125 kg / 275,6 lbs
- Resistance unit: motor
- Control: Interactive
- Wireless connections: Bluetooth & ANT+
- Suitable axles: Race 130mm, MTB 135mm, 142 x 12 mm, 148 x 12 mm
- Suitable cassettes: Shimano & SRAM: 8 t/m 11 speed (Campagnolo body sold separately)
- Unique features: Pedal stroke analysis, Road feel, Descent simulation, Dynamic inertia, Isokinetic and Isotonic training mode.