Shimano's SPD pedals have been around forever and, aside from a few additions here and there, have remained pretty much unchanged. The reason is simple: Shimano got it right the first time. The M530 still uses Shimano's tried and true SPD retention system, but it incorporates a larger platform to add a bit of support in gnarly sections of trail where you're tossed around. The M530 SPD MTB pedal incorporates the same smart features that SPDs have incorporated for years. The dual sided pedals make clipping in a snap. Sealed cartridge bearings make them pretty much maintenance free, although if you need to take them apart to clean and grease the internals, it can still be done without any SPD specific tools. Finally, there's the tension adjustment, which is why many believers have been riding SPDs for years. With a 3mm Allen wrench, you can adjust the release tension of your pedals, so you can customize the feel to your exact comfort level.