EThirteen wade into the ever-competitive dropper post market with the Vario Infinite. Ben has been seeing if it can cut it with the big boys.
A modern essential, it is rare to see a bike without a dropper post these days. If a post is good, it is light on the thumb, reliable, and you basically don’t notice it when you are riding. A bad dropper will ruin a ride.
Ben finds out where the EThirteen Vario sits in the pack.
Whilst your bike probably came with a decent dropper post, many riders these days want to squeeze as much drop out of their post as possible. With posts usually coming in set increments of travel… 125, 150, and 170mm and so on, this can often leave you between sizes, with 20mm of post showing out of the frame and 20mm of untapped travel. This is where E*Thirteen’s latest creation, the Vario Infinite comes in.
Essentially a cable operated post, it has a trick up its sleeve as it can be adjusted by 30mm of travel in 5mm increments in about a minute and without tools. You don’t even need to take the post off your bike. It is so simple and means you can slam the post in your bike and then try a couple of different options to get maximum drop whilst still being able to pedal.
The Vario is available in the usual diameters and in 2 lengths. 120-150mm drop and the 150-180mm drop that I tested. The post sells on its own, without a lever, so you could run it with an existing cable lever like a Loam Lever or Wolf Tooth Remote Dropper or you can choose from two E*Thirteen options. There is a minimalist and rather old school lever and then there is a modern and re-worked under bar lever that I reviewed.
In action the Vario 1X lever is really smooth and light and the action stands up to comparison with the Wolf Tooth and Loam Levers mentioned earlier. It has three horizontal positions, a reach adjust and worked well with Shimano shifters and brakes on my test bike. The post was reliable and creak free all summer although I should note it hardly did any wet rides due to lockdown and the great weather we had.
What do we think?
Whilst you will probably only change the travel once on your bike, it is still a really useful feature to get the maximum drop out of your frame. It also makes it a product that you could easily take from bike to bike if you get a fresh ride. This makes it an attractive proposition, especially given the ease of servicing and availability of cheap replacement parts that should keep this post running for years.
Max post drop for max send
Could do better:
Not an awful lot
You can check out the Ethirteen Vario Dropper Post on their website here.
Read all of our other product reviews on our Gear page here.