€ 1,300 for a set of brakes? Are you serious? Needless to say, the Trickstuff MAXIMA is the most expensive brake in this test. In return for your money, you’ll get a super stylish, elegant brake with a raw alloy finish and a shed-load of power. But is it just just an incredibly expensive anchor, or do Trickstuff have everything under control?

Learn more about this comparison test: The best MTB disc brakes – 14 MTB brakes in comparison

Trickstuff MAXIMA | Four pistons| Mineral oil | organic pads | 548 g (Set without rotor) | € 1,300 (Set without rotor) | Manufacturer’s website

Trickstuff are a small German manufacturer that produce premium brakes in its headquarters in Freiburg, and they’re gaining increasing popularity worldwide. Alongside the MAXIMA, Trickstuff also offer the DIRETTISSIMA and PICCOLA CARBON brake models. However, the MAXIMA is the most powerful stopper in their portfolio, and without question the flagship model in the range. At € 1,300, it’s sinfully expensive and costs almost twice as much as the second most expensive brakes on test, the SRAM MAVEN and Hayes Dominion. However, the eye-watering price doesn’t seem to make it any less popular! On the contrary, perhaps there’s a certain snob factor playing in its favour, meaning that the price is definitely part of the hype. Tipping the scales at 548 g, the MAXIMA four piston brake is one of the lightest competitors in this test. It features a tool-free lever reach adjuster, but forgoes an externally adjustable bite point. We tested the brake with the organic POWER pads, but Trickstuff also have three more pad models called STANDARD, POWER+ and POWER ALU, offering a suitable option for all tastes and applications.

The two-part clamp looks great, but is a little finicky to use, requiring you to tighten the two clamping screws in a certain order, while at the same time trying to hold everything together with the other hand. However, Trickstuff also offer clamp adapters that allow you to secure both Shimano and SRAM shifters directly to the brake. This minimises the number of clamps on the bars, ensuring a tidy cockpit.

Like SRAM brakes, the Trickstuff MAXIMA can be bled using the traditional two-syringe method. However, you’ll need a syringe with an M5 thread for the lever unit, and one with an M4 thread for the calliper. Moreover, the bleed port on the brake lever is positioned horizontally, on the side of the lever, meaning that you’ll have to loosen the lever clamp and turn the brake with the bleed port facing upwards before bleeding – annoying! On Trickstuff’s website, you’ll find a comprehensive bleeding guide, though the instructions are only in German – everyone else will have to figure it out from the pictures.

Pure elegance: the brake levers of the Trickstuff MAXIMA

Trickstuff MAXIMA on test

While our lab tests show that the Trickstuff generates insane amounts of braking torque, it only positions second in terms of power, behind the Hope Tech 4 V4. The difference with our Sinter reference pads is very small, which means that Trickstuff’s in-house pads are already an excellent choice.

The lever unit is positioned close to the handlebars and sits at a rather steep angle. The lever reach adjustment offers a wide range of positions, from very close to far out, allowing you to find your sweet spot quickly and easily. When playing around in the car park, you’ll notice the soft, spongy bite point, but once you’re in the trail, the MAXIMA’s sheer power puts this in the background. As soon as you reach the beginning of the bite point, the Trickstuff decelerates hard, while the soft brake feeling ensures excellent modulation. This means that the brakes deliver plenty of power with minimal force. Overall, the MAXIMA has a similar brake feeling to the Hope, although Trickstuff’s lever ergonomics are far better. Actuation is super smooth with a fast, defined lever return.

Our conclusions about the Trickstuff MAXIMA

Not only does the Trickstuff MAXIMA look incredibly lush, but it backs up the looks with performance on the trail. If you can ignore the eye-watering price tag and tricky bleeding procedure, you’ll get a brake that generates huge amounts of power and at the same time offers excellent modulation, with the soft bite point making up for the brutal power. Overall, the Trickstuff MAXIMA is a premium component with premium performance.


  • Brutal power
  • Excellent modulation
  • Extremely elegant


  • Insanely expensive
  • Finicky bleed procedure

For more info, visit Trickstuff.com

Find the overview of this comparison test here: The best MTB disc brakes – 14 MTB brakes in comparison

All brakes in test:
Formula Cura 4 | Hayes Dominion T4 | Hope Tech 4 V4 | MAGURA MT5 Pro | MAGURA MT7 | Shimano SLX | Shimano XT | Shimano XTR | SRAM CODE Bronze Stealth | SRAM CODE Ultimate Stealth | SRAM MAVEN Ultimate | Trickstuff MAXIMA | TRP DH-R EVO | TRP Trail EVO |

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Words: Simon Kohler Photos: Peter Walker