To be honest, most of my component changes are vanity upgrades and they don't make a lot of difference. I've used Downhill brakes from SRAM, Shimano and Hope. They're all good and I could swap between them all and I'd still slow down at the same rate. However, I liken going from ally to carbon rims to going from 26" to 27.5". It's an instant step up in performance with noticeable gains from the word go!