RockShox Vivid | First Looks and Overview


RockShox has brought back the classic Vivid from the archives with full redesign from top to bottom!

Sporting a huge air can to provide coil-like suppleness that’s built for every kind of bike from enduro to downhill to eMTBs, the all new Vivid is RockShox’s highest performing air shock to date. The Vivid is built on an RC2T damper like in RockShox’s Super Deluxe, and improves on that damper by adding TouchDown technology and the same adjustable Hydraulic Bottom Out used in the Super Deluxe Coil.

RockShox Vivid Rear Shock
At A Glance

  • High volume DebonAir air spring

  • RC2T Damper

  • Adjustable HBO

  • TouchDown Technology with position-sensitive damping

  • 100 hour service interval

  • $699 USD - Ultimate

  • $729 USD - Ultimate w/ bike specific tune

There’s a lot to unpack with RockShox’s most tech filled shock to date,
so let’s check out the all new Vivid!

RockShox Vivid Ultimate

rockshox vivid ultimate rear shock on a specialized stumpjumper mountain bike for the vivid overview and first looks

First of all, let’s just take a look at how thick and burly the Vivid is compared to the Super Deluxe. The size of this new shock makes it pretty clear that the Vivid is designed for downhill performance, and while the Super Deluxe has been right at home on every bike from trail bikes to downhill, the Vivid is the new downhill and enduro specialist. The new Vivid has more oil, bigger seals and more air volume, all combined to create the most plush and durable air shock possible. Built on metric sizes to fit all modern mountain bikes designed for descending performance, the RockShox Vivid will be most at home strapped to a bike with big travel numbers and a rowdy attitude.

a rockshox super deluxe ultimate and rockshox vivid ultimate rear mountain bike shocks leaning against a white wall

RockShox Vivid Ultimate and Super Deluxe Ultimate

TouchDown Damper

TouchDown technology was designed for the Vivid’s RC2T damping system to change its damping characteristics depending on how deep the shock is in its stroke. While position-sensitive damping itself isn’t an entirely new technology, it’s the first time we’ve seen this from RockShox. TouchDown technology bypasses the compression damping in the first 10% of the shock’s stroke, minimizing any friction in the initial stroke. Paired with the large volume air chamber, this gives the Vivid an unmatched off the top feeling from an air shock that only coil shocks can challenge.

detail of the rc2t damper and touchdown damper on a rockshox vivid ultimate rear shock on a specialized stumpjumper mountain bike for the vivid overview and first looks

The rest of the RC2T damper is quite similar to the damper found on the Super Deluxe, featuring High and Low Speed Compression adjusters with tick marks on the outside to easily show you exactly how much compression your shock is set up with. Anyone worried about climbing efficiency will also be glad to know the lockout switch has an incredibly satisfying click into place and gives a very solid climbing platform that has enough give to provide traction on tricky climbs. At the other end of the shock is the rebound knob, which has 20 clicks of adjustment, and offers a wide range of rebound damping so every rider can keep the rear end of the bike glued to the trail.

Hydraulic Bottom Out

For the fans of the adjustable Hydraulic Bottom Out feature on the Super Deluxe Coil, you’re in luck, because that little purple knob has been implemented on the Vivid to keep you from clanging off the bottom on the big hits. Offering five different compression settings, the Vivid’s adjustable Hydraulic Bottom Out goes the extra mile in saving your butt the next time you sail past the landing out on the trail, and adds bottom-out resistance in the last 20% of travel. Just like on RockShox’s other shocks with the HBO feature, it won’t keep you from bottoming out. Instead, it keeps bottoming out from being the jarring experience that you set up a shock to avoid at all costs. HBO makes bottoming out a comfortable experience where you recognize the bottom out without any harshness.

detail of the hydraulic bottom out adjuster on a rockshox vivid ultimate rear shock on a specialized stumpjumper mountain bike for the vivid overview and first looks

DebonAir Air Spring

Within that big air can sits a highly tunable air spring featuring DebonAir technology, which has an incredibly large volume that can be adjusted by adding or removing volume spacers. Just like on other air shocks, volume spacers won’t change how the airspring behaves in the initial stroke, rather only affecting the latter half of the stroke, providing a bit of midstroke support and really ramping up the end stroke. Higher volume air springs like what’s found on the Vivid get closer to the linear feeling of a coil shock compared to typical small volume air shocks. While the new Vivid isn’t completely linear, it gets closer to that coveted coil feeling than any RockShox air shock that’s come before it.

Quality and Reliability

A quality of life change that isn’t noticeable looking at the outside of the Vivid shock, is the increase in service intervals from 50 hours to 100 hours. RockShox has placed an emphasis on reliability and longevity with the Vivid, and it uses Maxima’s Plush Dynamic Suspension Lube to keep everything in perfect working order for the duration of the shock’s service interval. Another welcome quality of life change is the little 3mm wrench hidden on the rebound knob. What looks like a toolless rebound adjuster at first glance is actually a removable 3mm wrench that riders can use to adjust their High Speed Compression, HBO, as well as Rebound!

Vivid Configurations and Custom Tuning

Vivid Select+, Select, and Base

Coming in a few different configurations, the Vivid Ultimate is the only Vivid to come with all of the features we listed here and is the only Vivid that is offered aftermarket. The Vivid Select+, Vivid Select, and base Vivid are all OEM specced shocks that forego features found on the Vivid Ultimate. Thankfully, if you buy a bike that comes specced with one of the lower-tier Vivids, they can all be upgraded to have all the same features and performance of the Vivid Ultimate with the RC2T Reservoir Upgrade. This upgrade adds the TouchDown RC2T damper with the adjustable HBO and is an amazing upgrade for anyone with a non-Ultimate Vivid.

detail of the vivid logo on a rockshox vivid ultimate rear shock on a specialized stumpjumper mountain bike for the vivid overview and first looks

Custom Tuning

Custom tuning is an increasingly popular option for riders looking for maximum performance out of their suspension, and RockShox is offering Vivids that come pretuned for popular bike models. Every bike’s suspension design acts a bit differently, and the most particular riders will absolutely notice the difference between a shock tuned specifically for their bike compared to a generic tune. Shocks can also be retuned with shim kits, and will need a full tear down to make this happen. Similarly, the Vivid can also be restroked, but is a very complicated procedure and we recommend buying the right size Vivid right from the start.

We are incredibly excited to get more time on the Vivid here at The Lost Co. We imagine that this will be the most popular shock for enduro, downhill, and some trail bikes, and are incredibly excited to get more time in on this shock for a full review down the line!

Shop the RockShox Vivid

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Got questions? Feel free to shoot us an email or give us a call!

(360) 306-8827



Tor Weiland



Bellingham, WA

Current Bikes: Transition Spire Custom Build

Bike Size: Medium

Favorite Trails: Oriental Express, Galbraith

About Me: Hailing from the sunny landscape of California, Tor headed north and landed here in the cloudy town of Bellingham, WA. His riding style is "PINNED" and he loves to scope out those seemingly impossible triples. He loves riding and also loves sharing his experiences with others. You can catch Tor in front of the camera or behind the keyboard, but best of luck catching him on the trail!