Having a PowerTap wheel as a racing option is a great thing for your personal service course. The ENVE SES 3.4 PowerTap Tubular Wheelset means you'll give up nothing on your competitors and still have power readings while you're racing. This is thanks to the super-light, aero, yet stable ENVE 3.4 tubular rims laced to a PowerTap hub in the rear.
PowerTap is one of the lightest and accurate power meter options around. The G3 hub is a mere 325g, the G3C, with ceramic bearings, only 315g. Many rear hubs weigh this much already, and with PT, you get power readings to better monitor your efforts.
The ENVE SES 3.4 rims are the most versatile in the lineup. This is thanks to the lowest profiles and weights of the family. SES, Smart ENVE System, signals that these were designed by renowned aerodynamicist Simon Smart as a system—not just rims built for the wind tunnel, but differing front and rear designs that are designed to interact well with bicycles and the rider. A wider, shallower front handles crosswinds better, making it easier to control your bike, while the narrower, deeper rear is more aero because it doesn't have to contend with side wind as much.
Tubulars offer a different ride than clinchers. They shave off grams because they don't have to be built up to keep unsupported rim walls strong. The front rim is but 340g, the rear 380g. This also makes them stronger. The wider rim means more gluing surface for the tubular tires, which allows for lower pressures—great for cyclocross and for improving tire adhesion to road surfaces—and keeps the tires in place better when rims heat up.
Not that ENVE's heat up much. The carbon lay-up keeps temperatures low during heavy braking, actually doing better than some aluminum rims under heavy loads. This smart thinking extends to other aspects of design, like molding holes for the spokes and valve rather than cutting them.
Also part of the system are the brake pads, which are a material chosen for how well it stops ENVE rims. In addition to the brake pads, which are mandatory for the warranty, the wheels are delivered with titanium-shafted ENVE skewers and two sets of ENVE valve extenders
We've been discussing rims, but these are wheelsets. As such, there are two hub options. One is a DT Swiss 240 front hub with a PowerTap G3 rear, the other is Chris King R45 Ceramic front with a G3C rear. The "C" stands for ceramic bearings, which roll smoother and save you another 10g. Both are built 20/24 with DT Swiss Aerolite spokes, radial lacing in front, two cross in back. Both are available with Shimano/SRAM 10/11 and Campagnolo 9/10/11 cassette bodies. The DT Swiss weigh 1432g for the set, while the Chris King weigh 1423g.
ENVE stands firmly behind their products. Not only do they have a five-year warranty on their products, but they also have a lifetime crash replacement policy where they'll replace any ENVE product for 50% of MSRP, provided the customer has the paperwork to prove original ownership.
ENVE and PowerTap have teamed up to bring PowerTap's latest power meter technology with ENVE's lightest aero tubular rims.