The Italian brand Miche (pronounced Mi-kay) has been part of cycling since 1919. The company manufactures a wide range of cycling components but are famed for their road, track and MTB wheels. Miche have stuck with their roots and continue to make all of their products in Italy. I have been running in a set of the Miche Syntium AXY aluminium clinchers for the last few weeks to see how they roll.
The Miche Syntium are the company’s top end Alloy wheels. In the performance chart, the syntiums are categorized as racing or endurance wheels. The rims are made from lightweight 7075 aluminium and have a CNC machined braking surface. Both front and rear wheels have a 24mm rim depth, with the rear being asymmetric. The rim width is quite narrow by today’s standards. The inner rim is just 15mm and 20mm for the outer rim. This means that fitting wider tyres becomes a bit of a task.
Like the rims, the Syntium AXY hubs, axels and freewheel body are made from AL 7075 T6 Aluminium. This makes them the whole wheel impressively stiff whilst keeping the weight down. The hubs feature a sealed Miche bearings and a ‘smoothness adjust ring’, making them easier to maintain.
Miche Syntium AXY wheels are available with either a 9/10/11 speed Campagnolo or Shimano/SRAM freehub.
The spokes are straight pull Sapim flat spokes. They made from Aisi 302 stainless steel. The nipples are also Sapim but ate made from AL 7075 aluminium. The spoke pattern is radial at the front, with an 18 spoke count. The rear wheel has a 24 spoke count but has a 2 crossed drive-side pattern. This is to counter the Asymmetric, off-centre rim design.
The wheels on their own with no rim tape or QR’s (quick releases) weight around 1580g. The wheelset comes with Miche Strada Alloy quick releases which weight in at just over 100g, and rim tape.
I have manged to put a few hundred miles into the Miche Syntium AXY wheels I have been testing. I fitted 25mm Pirelli P Zero tyres as these offer a balanced all-round performance . The narrow rims mean that your thumbs have to work when it comes to fitting the tyres. The wheels are nicely finished and there is barely any evidence of where the ends are bonded. The Syntium wheels roll nice and smoothly and the freehub provides a sensible amount of noise. But I do feel that the wheels aren’t as responsive as I’d expected when suddenly putting the power down. At high-speed, the Syntium’s really go, but the turn of pace is a bit sluggish.
The overall ride is a little firm but not uncomfortable. I have been really impressed by the stiffness of the wheels. The shallow 24mm rims produce very little (lateral) flex when under pressure. I tested the wheels with a series of out-of-the saddle sprints as well as short sharp climbs. Each time I found the wheels to be solid and confident under my 96kg weight. The low profile rims and flat spokes help in windy conditions. The wheels glide along with little drama, even from crosswinds. On longer rides, the wheels just roll like they could go all day. Their stiffness can make some rougher surfaces a little unforgiving but generally I have had no issues with the ride comfort.
Miche Syntium AXY Wheelset Review Conclusion
Miche’s 99 year history means they have plenty of know-how when it comes to manufacturing cycling components. The design and build quality of the Syntium AXY wheels are a good example of this. They are as aesthetically pleasing as they are nice to ride. The stiffness is impressive and what they lack in quick-responsiveness, they make up for in top speed. The ride is firm enough for fast rides/racing but comfortable enough for longer distance rides. This makes them a great all-rounder, or fast training/racing wheels. The Miche Syntium AXY have a list price of £370.00 – which is less than many of the rival models. All in all, these are well worth a look if you are after an instant upgrade from stock or entry level wheels.
The Miche Syntium AXY are solid, lightweight aluminium clinchers that offer great stiffness and top-end speed, despite being a little sluggish of the mark. The build quality and reasonable price make them a good investment.