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Elite Realpower CT Reality trainer

Almost like riding outside

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The Elite RealPower CT trainer is a good choice for cyclists who normally can't stand riding indoors

The Elite RealPower CT trainer is a good choice for cyclists who normally can't stand riding indoors (Image credit: James Huang)
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The resistance unit is computer-controlled based on where you are on the virtual course and Elite says slopes up to 20 percent are faithfully simulated

The resistance unit is computer-controlled based on where you are on the virtual course and Elite says slopes up to 20 percent are faithfully simulated (Image credit: James Huang)
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The handlebar-mounted console controls just a few basic functions and is somewhat clumsy to mount

The handlebar-mounted console controls just a few basic functions and is somewhat clumsy to mount (Image credit: James Huang)
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Once the software is set up, getting things going is relatively simple

Once the software is set up, getting things going is relatively simple (Image credit: James Huang)
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Users can pull up a course profile at any point during the training session which also provides a visual cue as to how far you have left to go. A second screen graphs your speed, heart rate and ballpark power output

Users can pull up a course profile at any point during the training session which also provides a visual cue as to how far you have left to go. A second screen graphs your speed, heart rate and ballpark power output (Image credit: James Huang)
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Downloaded GPS and user-created courses are handled by the RealAxiom portion of the software which offers no video

Downloaded GPS and user-created courses are handled by the RealAxiom portion of the software which offers no video (Image credit: James Huang)
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The folding steel frame is disappointingly basic with a narrow footprint and slippery hard rubber feet that have no adjustments for uneven floors

The folding steel frame is disappointingly basic with a narrow footprint and slippery hard rubber feet that have no adjustments for uneven floors (Image credit: James Huang)
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The single-sided axle mount is easy to use and locks securely in place though it flexes more than we'd like

The single-sided axle mount is easy to use and locks securely in place though it flexes more than we'd like (Image credit: James Huang)
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The hinged frame doesn't lock in place

The hinged frame doesn't lock in place (Image credit: James Huang)
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A wired cadence sensor is included though it has to be attached with zip-ties which makes swapping between multiple bikes cumbersome

A wired cadence sensor is included though it has to be attached with zip-ties which makes swapping between multiple bikes cumbersome (Image credit: James Huang)
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A riser block is conveniently included with the package along with a generous allotment of 15 courses so you won't get bored any time soon

A riser block is conveniently included with the package along with a generous allotment of 15 courses so you won't get bored any time soon (Image credit: James Huang)

Winter’s tight grip still

The RealPower CT puts out to pasture the usual practice

Its folding steel frame and rear-mounted resistance unit look familiar

The concept is simple: if you start heading uphill on the DVD, the

Pretty roads with no cars!

In practice, the RealPower CT is certainly one of the more entertaining

The RealPower CT’s on-screen display provides a wealth of

The software even lets you create sub-courses from the existing files – for instance, if you don’t feel like riding the entire Mont Ventoux

The real fun begins when you take advantage of the software’s more

You can even download your actual rides from a compatible GPS device –

Have a big event coming up and wish you could pre-ride the

Though the map-it-yourself course creation and the downloadable GPS

Other high-end computerised trainers such as the Tacx Fortius VR and

A few glitches

We went ahead and downloaded the latest software version from Elite’s

After contacting Elite, it turned out that a far more refined

We also had some initial problems with the power readings, which were often

Thankfully, the system can be calibrated based on your own setup and environment for much more accurate

The software issues are simple enough to solve – especially given

Elite’s Elastogel roller provides excellent tyre grip and is

We’d also prefer a cadence sensor that used something other than

Moreover, the console’s built-in heart rate monitor (HRM) receiver only works with older

Finally, the RealPower CT is only compatible with Windows computers and

Good, but not as good as

Compared to nearly any conventional trainer, the Elite RealPower CT

Even so, that premium price becomes harder to justify in light of the

More importantly, the RealPower CT’s slick feature array and

The price includes

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