Watts in a name.
Though the crankarms themselves are branded "Quarq," they're actually the Exogram carbon models used by sister-company SRAM in its carbon fiber offerings. The key difference between the DZero and, say, the Force or Red cranks is the bolt pattern and the spider, which houses the strain gauges constituting the "Power Meter" part of the BB30-compatible DZero Carbon Power Meter Crankset Package. Quarq's power meter design enjoyed a healthy amount of retooling for the DZero model. Overall, Quarq claims that "150 documented improvements" inform the evolution from the previous models to DZero, but the most important is to the heart of the meter itself: the strain gauges and measurement circuitry.
Of course, no amount of power measuring can make up for the lack of input, so we've equipped the chassis with a pair of SRAM road rings in either a standard, semi-compact, or true compact figuration, covering a range of use from Kona to l'Alpe d'Huez. Given the success that Quarq's previous models have enjoyed at these locations in the past, we're confident that we'll see the newest power meters proving themselves at both in the coming years.
The new model still incorporates five strain gauges strategically placed throughout the spider in order to measure the Newton meters you're throwing into the pedals. It's also still got the same claimed accuracy of +/- 1.5%, so its numbers are 0.5% more accurate than most meters, but the new design requires less correction in order to maintain accuracy in drastic temperature changes. Fewer corrections mean the DZero also better rations battery life than Quarq's previous power meter models, though when the battery does go out, you can still change it without tools or having to ship the whole thing to the manufacturer.
The DZero system's accuracy is further boosted by the return of Quarq's 10k dynamic temperature compensation technology, which alleviates the need for constant, mid-race zeroings in variable conditions. Even if it's just coasting for a few seconds or toggling through your head unit to the proper option, it can still be the difference between winning and losing. It's also obnoxious as hell. The DZero is equipped with an auto-adjust schedule based on a constellation of around 10,000 data points that chart how the unit responds to temperatures ranging from zero to 130 degrees Fahrenheit. This lets the power meter figure out the atmospheric details for you with minimal drift, so you can focus on turning the crank, not babysitting it.
Though the spider—where the strain gauges are housed—is aluminum, the crank arms themselves are the same Exogram Hollow Carbon models we see on Red cranksets, so the whole chassis is around 220 claimed grams lighter than the model with alloy crank arms. The DZero carbon also ships with the spacers and wave washer hardware required to install it in a BB386EVO bottom bracket—a bottom bracket standard that the aluminum version isn't compatible with.
The DZero also hosts Quarq's Power Balance and Omnical features, which record total output and output for either leg individually (Power Balance) and let you swap chainrings without recalibrating or negatively impacting accuracy (Omnical). As with previous Quarq models, the DZero communicates to your head unit via ANT+ wireless, but Quarq also adds Bluetooth to this generation. Up till now, we've always tempered the obligatory head unit-compatibility statement by writing that your current computer is likely already compatible with the power meter; now, we can just state outright that it is compatible.
We recognize that there is value in cycling components that can stand up to the elements we often encounter throughout the course of a year of training, but Quarq demonstrates its penchant for being overly thorough by ensuring that the unit's internals can handle comically extreme conditions. The system is waterproof for 30 minutes while submerged under one meter of water, a feature that will come in handy on days you take your bike on the swim leg, too.
Since the DZero is effectively a catch-all for almost every bit of tech Quarq has thrown at the power meter problem over the past decade, it includes the AxCad accelerometer, which provides cadence information without any additional sensors or magnets. The DZerp is also compatible with training software suites including Training Peaks WKO+, Training Peaks, Golden Cheetah, and Strava. Unlike previous versions, the DZero's Bluetooth compatibility lets it sync with the Qalvin BLE app to easily tune, tweak, and set zero offsets.
- A power meter crankset with SRAM reliability and Quarq technology
- Redesigned strain gauge system is even more precise
- Provides power for each leg individually
- Exogram carbon fiber crank arms for uncompromising stiffness
- Broadcasts via ANT+ and Bluetooth protocols
- Requires less correction for better data and longer battery life
- Easily swaps between BB30 frames and different chainrings
- Battery can be changed by home mechanics without tools