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photo: Matt Miller

In the past, our writers have posited the notion that “A dropper post is the number one upgrade that makes mountain biking more fun,” and after a few years of industry innovations, that statement still rings true. Leaning your bike deep into turns and maneuvering down rowdy tracks is all the more enjoyable when you can get the saddle out of the way. Droppers can be helpful on technical climbs as well, allowing riders to lower the saddle just enough to better pedal the tricky sections.

In short, if there is one thing that the majority of the global mountain bike community can agree on it is that we love our dropper posts! Okay, some of us love quick release seat post collars, but the desired result is similar.

Now, how do you choose your prized dropper post from the growing herd? They all look similar, and many of them function identically. Below we have gathered 31 posts, along with their relevant details and standout features, to help you comb through the selection.

First, we will go over some key elements to consider when shopping for a new up/down device. For more info, and a brief history on getting down, check out this article on how to choose the best dropper post.

Frame fit and desired drop

Before weighing the technical elements of the post itself you will need to determine what size post you need. Post diameter is the easier part of the equation. This measurement may be printed on your current post, published on your frame manufacturer’s website, or you can measure it with a set of calipers.

This video from GMBN explains how to determine what length and amount of travel will work for your bike and riding style.

Internal vs. external

Fortunately, modern mountain bike frames are usually designed with dropper posts in mind. Even gram-conscious XC designers are adding internal cable routing for droppers, as more World Cup level athletes line up with a way to get low. Internal routing offers a cleaner look while keeping the cable safe from anything that might damage it. Internal routing has the added benefit of making a bike easier to clean, as there are fewer bits to scrub around.

With all of its stated advantages, not everyone likes internal cable routing. The cables can rattle against the inside of the frame, and internally-routed cables are inherently more difficult to replace. Fortunately, most brands make their droppers with external routing options for those who prefer that route.

Here is a helpful guide on how to install an internally-routed dropper, and another on how to keep things quiet inside your frame.

External routing is easy to service but requires some extra steps to keep quiet and secure.

Travel functionality

Most posts use what is called infinite adjust, which means riders can drop the post to any comfortable position along the length of its travel. There are a number of brands that still use a segmented position approach, wherein the post stops at a variety of specific points along its travel. For folks who simply want their saddle up or down this may not matter, but for those who like to fine tune saddle height this factor is worth considering.

The post return speed may also be important. With some posts, the return speed can be adjusted to the desired velocity by changing the air pressure inside the post. Others allow the rider to regulate speed based on how far the lever is engaged. The Rockshox Reverb has a dial at the remote that allows the rider to incrementally adjust return speed. Still, some posts have a set return speed, with no means of adjustment. For posts with a set speed, you will need to read reviews to determine how quickly the post returns when compared to others like it.

Lastly, some posts become very slow on colder days, and if you plan to ride in the winter or fat bike on a given post you will want to be sure it has been tested accordingly.

Remote Lever

The lion’s share of posts we list below include a remote lever of some sort. If you run a front derailleur you will want a lever that doesn’t interfere with your shifter paddle. With a 1X drivetrain, you can use a lever that sits where your front shifter once was, making for a comfortable symmetry between the rear shifter on your right thumb and dropper lever on the left. Remotes with a proper ergonomic position require less attention and focus from the rider, allowing focus on what’s up ahead instead.

In addition to placement and ergonomics, the amount of pressure and movement required to initiate the dropper at the lever varies from post to post. Some posts, like the Marzocchi Transfer, require very little lever action to move the post quickly, whereas the X-Fusion Manic incorporates a spring at the post to add tension to the cable system. This element will also require some comparative research, via the links below.

If your dropper is designed to have the cable clamped at the lever, and your lever is designed for the opposite, this is a possible solution. This cable clamp, also called a knarp, keeps the cable tight and in place.

Serviceability and Parts

Whether you are a skilled wrench or prefer to have your chain lubed by your local mechanic, it is helpful to know if the post you are interested in is serviceable. Are the seals, pins, cartridge, and other bits replaceable as they wear out? Can you fix the post at home, or do you have to send it back to the manufacturer?

Posts from Thomson, Fox, and a few other brands are only serviceable by certified shops and service centers, which can be quite a long and expensive process.

The drop

The list below includes one of the most popular posts from each brand. We focused on the 150mm, internally-routed option whenever possible, as that is the most common length on complete bikes today.

DropperWeight (post only)LengthTravelDiametersLeverClap LocationServiceabilityPrice
9point8 Fall Line451g325-440mm75/100/125/150mm30.9/31.6/34.9Sold separatelyLeverFactory Only$349
Bike Yoke Revive525g (160, 30.9)466.2mm (160mm)125-185mm30.9/31.6/34.9YesLeverDIY€379
Bontrager Dropline599g (125mm)395mm (125mm)100/150mm31.6Sold separatelyLeverDIY$379
BMC Trailsyncn/a?Yes?
Brand X Ascend550g (120mm, 31.6)410mm (120mm), 480 (150)120/150mm30.9/31.6YesPostDIY€108.00
Crankbrothers Highline625g (170mm, 31.6)465mm (170mm)100/125/170mm30.9/31.6YesLeverDIY€350
DVO Garnet574g (?)385mm (125mm)100/125/15030.9/31.6YesPostDIY$399
e*thirteen TRS+570g (150mm)485mm (150mm)125/150/170mm30.9/31.6YesLeverDIY$279
Easton Haven495g (?)440 (150)100/125/150mm30.9/31.6YesPost?€500
Eightpins512g (150mm)480150-220mm Adjustable30.9/31.6YesLeverDIYn/a
Fox Transfer589g (150mm)460mm (150mm)100/125/150mm30.9/31.6Sold separatelyLeverFactory only$344
FSA Flowtron616g (150mm, 30.9)470mm (150mm)125/150mm30.9/31.6YesLeverDIY$259
Funn UpDown Internal610g (150mm, 30.9)458mm (150mm)125/150mm30.9/31.6YesLeverDIY$279
Giant Contact SL Switch600g (125mm, 30.9)440mmm (150mm)100/125/150mm30.9YesLeverDIY$315
Kind Shock E30-I630 (150mm, 30.9)485mm (150mm)65/100/120mm30.9/31.6Sold separatelyLeverDIY$209
Magura Vyron595g446mm (150mm)100/125/150mm30.9/31.6YesWireless!Factory only€450
Manitou Jack549g480mm (150mm)125/150mm30.9/31.6YesLever?€325
Marzocchi Transfer589g (150mm)460mm (150mm)100/125/150mm30.9/31.6Sold separatelyLeverFactory only$294
OneUp Dropper509g (150mm, 30.9)410mm (150mm)150/170mm Both are adjustable.30.9/31.6Sold SeparatelyLeverDIY$199
PNW Components Rainier IR622.4g (170mm, 30.9)464mm (150mm)are adjustable30.9/31.6YesLeverDIY$200
Race Face Turbine495g (150mm, 30.9)440mm (150mm)100/125/150/175mm30.9/31.6YesPostFactory only$380
Rockshox Reverb Stealth545g (100mm, 30.9)440mm (150mm)100/125/150/170mm30.9/31.6/34.9YesHydraulicDIY$349
SDG Tellis552g (150mm, 30.9)440mm (150mm)125/150mm30.9/31.6YesLeverDIY$270
Shimano Pro Koryak508g (150mm)400mm (150mm, 30.9)70/120/150/170mm30.9/31.6YesLeverDIY€219
Specialized Comand WU650g (150mm)?150mm30.9PostDIY€670
Thomson Covert592g (?)400 (?)100/125/150mm30.9/31.6LeverFactory only$479
Trans X JD550g458mm (150mm, 30.9)
15030.9/31.6YesPostDIY$150
Ultimate Use Helix589g (150, 30.9)520 (165mm)125/165mm30.9/31.6YesPost?€317
Vecnum Moveloc2490g (140mm)423 (140mm)140/170/200mm30.9/31.6/34.9YesLverDIY€369
X Fusion Manic570g (150mm)437.5 (150mm)125/150mm30.9/31.6YesPostDIY€240
Yep Components Uptimizer HC500g (?)435mm (155mm)80/100/125/155/185mm30.9/31.6YesLeverDIY€380

9point8 Fall Line The Fall Line is the lightest post we looked at by a notable margin. The company offers a “second bike” kit for $47, so you can spread the love across your stable.

BikeYoke Revive Every post can suffer from air sneaking into places it is not supposed to go, causing it to perform poorly. Bike Yoke has created a release valve to reset the system without having to take anything apart. All you do is loosen a 4mm bolt at the head, run the drop through its travel once, then tighten the bolt. Voila, the system is reset.

Buy the Revive at JensonUSA

Bontrager Drop Line Trek claims that the Drop Line is one component you can always depend on. “Dropper posts are awesome until they’re not. That’s why we created the Drop Line to be the one you can rely on. From installation to activation, no other dropper post can withstand the rigors of real-world riding and just keep functioning.”

BMC Trailsync The Trailsync allows riders to lower the post and open the rear suspension with one lever, simplifying the cockpit and pre-descent checklist.

Brand-X Ascend One of the most affordable posts in the mix, the Brand-X Ascend is said to be quite reliable and isn’t even the heaviest post on the list.

Crankbrothers Highline The Highline claims to have “the world’s most ergonomic remote,” and comes with a solid 3-year warranty.

Buy the Highline at REI

DVO Garnet DVO claims that the Garnet dropper post is intentionally simple and reliable, with no wheels reinvented. Return speed is adjustable by adding or releasing air pressure at the head of the post.

Compare prices on the DVO Garnet

e*thirteen TRS+ Like the PNW Rainier post, the TRS+ uses a coil system in place of compressed air. This means “less maintenance than air sprung posts with a smooth, consistent return speed every time, for the life of the post,” according to e*thirteen.

Easton Haven The Haven dropper post has a “Quick Connector feature [that] allows tool-free easy disconnection from internal cable routing without losing tension settings, making it easy to remove the post or share between two bikes.”

Eightpins Standard on Liteville frames and hopefully soon others, the Eightpins post is fully integrated into the frame. The designers used the frame’s seat tube in place of the outer/lower post, cutting weight and allowing the post to drop all of the way to the frame.

Fox Transfer “The Fox Transfer return rate can be modulated at the lever, which is a nice option to have. Pressing on the lever firmly brings the post up right away, while a light touch slowly eases the saddle up.” -Jeff Barber

See Also
By Jeff Barber
 

FSA Flowtron “The Flowtron takes its name from a fast, rolling flow trail in the Pacific Northwest. A forged, shifter-style remote and industry-first, adjustable spring tension enables the rider to customize the lever feel and force.”

Funn UpDown Internal Like the BikeYoke design, the UpDown cartridge can be easily reset to keep it working like new, and the post is fully user-serviceable.

Giant Contact SL Switch The Switch has extra long rail cradles, designed to grip the delicate rails of light saddles adequately. Giant says the post can be easily switched between external and internal routing as needed.

Kind Shock E30-I “Based on a few bad experiences in the past, I’m always stoked when a dropper post works right out of the box, and the E30-I does not disappoint. Throughout my testing, it dropped when I asked it to drop, and it returned when summoned. It doesn’t get any simpler than that, and if you’re looking for a post that just does the job, you can stop reading here.” Jeff Barber

Magura Vyron Well, it’s electric. It’s wireless. You could swap it from one bike to the next in a matter of minutes. Magura may not have all of the kinks worked out with the Vyron, but it is the way of the future for front-country mountain biking.

Manitou Jack Unfortunately we don’t have a lot of info on the Manitou Jack. This video offers a smattering of info about what is included with the post.

Marzocchi Transfer “Yes, Fox has a dropper seat post called the Transfer. Yes, Fox owns Marzocchi now. Yes, the Marzocchi Transfer is the same exact seat post as the Fox Transfer, but with a different name etched into it.” -Matt Miller

See Also
By Matt Miller
 

OneUp posts’ travel can be adjusted to the precise max height you desire, within a 50mm range. So, you can set up a 150mm post to top out anywhere between 100 and 150mm. This 170mm travel post is tuned to top out at 163mm, providing the proper saddle height and maximum travel for the rider.

OneUp Dropper The folks at One Up have designed a lightweight, solid post with 50mm of adjustable travel. If you buy a post with 170mm of travel, but your frame will only let you use 168mm or 152mm of that travel, that’s okay. The adjustment process doesn’t require any tools and can be completed in about two minutes.

Compare prices on the OneUp Dropper

PNW Components Rainier IR “The PNW Rainier IR is easily one of the best sub-$200 dropper posts on the market today. The only compromises buyers are making compared to much pricier posts are the weight and the lack of a tunable air cartridge. However, by giving up the latter, buyers are actually getting a post that should be more reliable in varying conditions and over time.” -Jeff Barber

Race Face Turbine Leave it to a Canadian brand to focus on cold-weather riding. “Lower air pressures and static seals offer unrivaled performance, control, and reliability. Turbine also operates in below-freezing temperatures making it perfect for Fat Bikes and cold-weather riding.”

Rockshox Reverb Stealth This gold-standard dropper was recently redesigned, and Rockshox has had plenty of time to work out the kinks. The Reverb now drops up to 170mm and can be ordered with a shifter-style remote.

SDG Tellis One of the latest companies to play on the dropper field, SDG spent the past two seasons perfecting the Tellis with professional riders and testers. They claim to have the softest lever action in the business, and one of the most durable cartridge systems available.

Compare prices on the SDG Tellis

Shimano Pro Koryak Alongside KS Suspension, Shimano offers the widest range of dropper sizes on the market. They are one of the few making a 27.2mm diameter post for XC bikes, and their post travel ranges from 70-170mm.

Specialized Command WU With DH and dirt-jump tech in mind, Specialized has designed the Command WU to angle the saddle nose up by 14° at its lowest point, then return to its original angle as it rises back. The lower rear of the saddle provides a bit more “effective drop.”

Thomson Covert Thomson claims that the Covert has the longest service interval in the industry. Need we say more?

Photo: Bikethomson.com

TranzX JD The TranzX is the second-least expensive post on the list, and is reportedly a durable option that users can service in the comfort of their own homes.

Ultimate Use Helix “Fundamentally simple, the British-made Helix avoids the pitfalls of the air & oil systems currently. Utilizing a helical shaft, its clutch is activated with a custom made, ‘mount anywhere,’ remote lever, allowing it to freely rise, fall, and lock at any height. Maximum drop of 125mm or 165mm available.”

Vecnum Moveloc2 The Movloc2 offers up to 200mm of travel, it’s light, and unfortunately, it only comes with external cable routing.

X-Fusion Manic The folks X-Fusion are making a bold claim here: “the action of [the Manic dropper post] feels super-duper smooth and far silkier than any dropper.”

Compare prices on the X-Fusion Manic

Yep Components Uptimizer HC This Swiss-made post is by far the most customizable of them all. After choosing the size you want, you can select the color of two different parts of the remote, and the color of the collar. Travel options for the Yep Uptimizer range from 80-155mm, and the 125mm post is available in a “tall” version for riders who need more post in their frame. The joystick-style lever can be pushed or pulled in nearly any direction to get the post to respond and can be mounted above or below either side of the bar.

Photo: Yep Components

Which dropper post offers the best value?

To vote and see results, please login using the menu at the top of this page, or create a free account.

Wow, what a load of droppers. Did we miss any? Is there one that you have had trouble with? Tell us about it in the comments below.

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# Comments

  • Youngdoc

    Why the omission of the KS LEV carbon? Like its heavier brother, it works great out of the box, but it also weighs in at only 419 grams, significantly lighter than any post in this list.

    • Brian Gerow

      Great question Youngdoc. That carbon post is sweet for sure. I limited the list to one dropper per company, and for Kind Shock I chose a post our writers had already reviewed, knowing we could provide more info therein.

    • Youngdoc

      Ah, makes sense. For what it’s worth, I switched out the dropper on my bike in 2018 to the KS LEV carbon and have been beating the crap out of it ever since. No complaints! It has so far survived the dust of Moab, the mud of everywhere, and the snow here in Ohio this winter. It’s pricey at around $500 USD, but reliable, and it shaves a few more grams for you weight weenies.

  • crevasse

    I put a Brand X Ascend on my fat bike, not needing or wanting to spend many hundreds. Works fine in sub freezing temps, assuming it is fine in summer temps. I see no reason why these others are so expensive except maybe distributor and retailer markup. The Brand X is sold direct.

  • Bikesandbones

    In addition to what you listed, the 9point8 Fall Line also comes in 175 and 200 mm travel versions. I’m considering getting one but have heard some negative things about their customer service. Anyone have any experience working with them?

    • Jeff Barber

      I’ve not had experience with them as a consumer, but I’ve met the founder and he’s a dedicated, super nice guy. I do get the impression that they are a small operation which probably makes customer service a bit of challenge.

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