Giant ATX vs Talon – A comprehensive comparison

An awesome bike is one that will get you to all places, events, or functions at whatever time of day or night. So, which between the Giant bike models; ATX and Talon, is more versatile?

Prom is a night that many remember with fondness. This is no different for me because my bike at the time saved the day.

I had to ride it across town this Prom evening to get a box of confetti which the event would not be complete without.

Considering the traffic, a bike was our fastest bet and I’m glad I had my trusted Talon to get me quickly to and from the supplies store.

It’s been a few years since then and I’m set for an upgrade. I wonder whether to stick with the Talon or invest in an ATX. After some research, this is my honest and informed opinion.

What is the difference between Giant ATX and Talon?

Model
Giant ATX
Giant Talon
Frame
Aluxx – Aluminum
Aluxx – Aluminum
Fork
SR Suntour
SR Suntour
Travel
75mm
100mm or 80mm
Shifter
Shimano EF41 and Tourney
Shimano SL-M315
Rims
Giant GX03V 26, 27.5”
Giant GX03V 27.5, 29”
Brake
Tektro TKB  172 – Mechanical
Tektro TKD 143  – Hydraulic
Availability

Giant ATX vs Talon – How do they compare?

Geometry 

Giant Talon caters to 27.5” and 29” wheels while the ATX is built to work with 26” and 27.5” tires. 

The Giant ATX bike is available in version 1 that uses an XCT HLO fork with a travel length of 100mm. This type has a system that stiffens with every knob turn and has a lockout feature.

It is built for racers but that doesn’t mean it cannot be used for casual rides to the park. On the bike, the seat tube is at an angle of 73 degrees and it is paired with a head tube at a 69.5-degree angle and an 1159mm wheelbase.

Both bikes are controlled using the disc brakes featuring Tektro systems that work equally well in wet or dry situations.

The Talon family has models 1,2 and 3 in their catalog. They all have an aluminum frame the difference lies in the size of their wheels and the value of some of their components. With Talon 3 you get 29” wheels while on the Talon 2 and 1 you get a 27.5” wheel.

The head angle is slightly slacking at a 69-degree angle which is a bit more relaxed than on the ATX. Reach and stack are either short or high across all models to give riders a more upright riding position.

Drivetrain 

On the Giant ATX, you will need to pull on a lever to access the brakes which is inferior to Talon which requires no cables to work effectively.   

Giant ATX provides riders with a 2×9-speed drivetrain that is a combination of the Shimano Altus shifters, front derailleur, and the rear derailleur controlled by the Shimano Acera system.

This setup is done like so because Acera is the better derailleur and because most of the shifting is handled by the rear, it makes more sense practically and economically to boost the rear and pair it with cheaper shifters.

The Shimano hydraulic disc brakes are unbeatably the best control system any bike could have because they are great all year round regardless of the season.

Although the Bontrager Connection wheels are not tubeless-ready, they wrap snuggly around the Bontrager XR2Comp tires and are tied to aluminum quick-release hubs.

In performance, this difference in the brand name is not quite significant other than the matter of lower value that TRP disc brakes are in the face of Shimano.

Riding Experience 

The aggressive geometry of the ATX bike makes for one that does as you wish when riding hard and the Talon model is quick in response and sharp steering. 

With the coil-spring fork and agile steering, the Giant ATX bike can conquer technical and extra rugged terrain.

On sharp and sudden turns, the bike displays good tracking. However, because the wheels are not tubeless, the tires suffer from high tire pressure in extremely rocky terrain which makes it hard to hold the line.

On the plus side, Talon’s Giant GXOV3 wheels are tubeless-ready but the Maxxis Ikon tires are not. This means that if you want the full benefits of a tubeless set-up, you need to buy tubeless-compatible tires, valves, and sealant to install them successfully.

The Talon seems to achieve a balance between a commuter, fitness, and experimental racing bike. With its light and fast tires, it breezes through dry trails and paths without any lag on paved roads

It is capable of steering sharply and responding quickly to pedal rotations and can see you through some rough and rocky terrain effortlessly.

Giant ATX vs Talon – A Comparison Overview 

Giant ATX Review  

2013 Giant ATX PRO Aluminum Alloy Mountain Bike Bicycle Mtb Frame 16 Inch Gray Color
  • 2013 GIANT ATX PRO Aluminum alloy Mountain bike frame / bicycle frame
  • Material: Aluminum alloy Size: 26*16 inch 16 inch Weight: 1590g With rear derailleur hanger
  • Configuration (Seatpost): 30.9mm Headset:44MM built-in wrist group,
  • Suit for BB91 bottom bracket (suit for Pressure into the style axis)
  • 16-inch: head tube 12cm top tube 55.5cm riser 39cm Weight 1598g

It is a classic entry bike into mountain biking. It has a reliable and strong frame that supports off-roading. Made from aluminum alloy, the bike is a hardtail with balanced proportions in height and weight.

It caters to both the 26” and the 27.5” tires making it accessible for more riders of varying dimensions. Fitted with disc brakes, the braking mechanism is ideal for all weathers because they are strong powered.

For added control, the Shimano drivetrain works in tandem with the SR Suntour fork. Together, the ride becomes smoother and more stable across all kinds of terrain.

To prolong the life and the efficiency of the bike’s cables, they have all been internally routed through the bike’s frame.

Pros 

  • Rack mounts provided
  • Fork lockout
  • 2×9 drivetrain is a fast and effective uphill
  • Gear display on the rear shifters
  • Internal routing

Cons

  • Wheels and tires not tubeless-ready

View Price on Amazon

Giant Talon Review 

Giant Talon 2 White/Black (2013) (Frame Size: 39 cm) Hardtail Mountain Bike
  • Frame-System: Hardtail
  • Fork-Brand: RockShox
  • Fork-Type: XC 30 w/lockout
  • Gear set-Brand: Shimano
  • Gear set-Type: Deore XT

This bike is hailed as a great all-terrain commuter, fitness, and experimental racing bike because of the 100mm fork, 2×9-speed drivetrain, and tubeless-ready wheels.

The coil spring fork suspension offered by RockShox XC30 may not feel as refined as an air spring fork, and may also be heavier but it doesn’t weigh down the front end and you can go over high obstacles almost effortlessly.

There is a preload adjustment offered to make customizable changes to suit your specific riding style and weight. Another plus to the suspension features is the lockout lever that can be used to turn suspension on or off based on the terrain.

Pros

  • Internal cabling
  • RockShox Suspension
  • 2×9 drivetrain
  • Quick-release wheel levers
  • Gear indicator

Cons 

  • Tread pattern not as aggressive

View Price on Amazon

Conclusion 

ATX is capable of incorporating the small 26” wheel and it offers a mechanical braking system which some people may prefer over the hydraulic Talon option.

Giant Talon is perfect for all-terrain riding. It is fitted with tubeless tires, good suspension, and the quick-release lever.

Verdict: So, which is better – Giant ATX or Talon?

The Giant Talon is better than the Giant ATX. When on the Giant Talon, you get tubeless tires boasting of a balance between the rough and smooth trails.

FAQ

What is the issue with the height of a bike seat?

If placed too low, you will experience compression at the front of the knee. On the other hand, if it is too high, you will not be stable on the saddle. This will lead to strain at the back of the knee because pedaling is interrupted.

I just bought my Talon 2, any suggestions on what to upgrade first?

The dropper post was my first upgrade. Solely because it comes in handy in the event of a race.