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Thread: It's time for a new GPS receiver / bike computer

  1. #1
    Steve O's Avatar
    Steve O is offline 5000+ Posts? The first step to beating addiction is admitting you have one.
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    Default It's time for a new GPS receiver / bike computer

    Hello,

    I got my Garmin Edge 500 in 2012 as a birthday gift. I sent it back once for a factory refurbished replacement. What I like most about it is it is compact and the battery lasts a long time. For instance, on my rides to and from Charlottesville - 125 miles - I never worried about battery. I think it still had 30%+ left.

    Friday morning I was out riding in the light rain and mist. Towards the end of the ride I noticed it was off. I didn't recall turning it off, so I tried to turn it back on. Nuttin'

    Once home, I plugged it in and it acted oddly. Two different computers said it did not recognize this thing I plugged in. It would not turn on if not plugged in. I could not run a factory reset; couldn't do anything. It wasn't the buttons (which have been a problem before); I could hear them click. It was just dead. Bricked.

    With nothing else to lose I put it in a a bag of rice, thinking that maybe there was moisture causing a malfunction.

    Two days. It worked!! Sort of. It came back to life when plugged in, and I recovered my lost rides. But it won't power up on its own.

    That's just a long prelude, though. Even if I can resuscitate it now, it's going to die entirely at some point. It's had a long, fruitful and happy life, and I'm happy to take it to the retired Garmin rest home to live out its final days in comfort.

    So I need a replacement. I've heard people proclaim allegiance to Wahoo, and others tout their various Garmins. Here are my needs:
    • I'm a cheapskate. I don't want to pay more for a device than I paid for some of my entire bicycles
    • I don't need external sensors like heart rate or cadence and such; I don't have those things anyway.
    • Long battery life would be a great feature
    • Reliability and durability are also key features
    • Smaller is better than bigger
    • Sophisticated mapping, etc. not needed, but breadcrumb or simple turn by turn would be fine


    Thanks for your ideas and suggestions.
    Steve O
    Last edited by Steve O; 08-02-2020 at 04:54 PM.

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    Wahoo ELEMNT Bolt meets most of your conditions (depending on the final negotiated price of your fixie). I think I get about 8 hours of battery life. It does not need external sensors, but I think it is more accurate with the speed sensor. It's pretty small. It does all the GPS mappy stuff, but not in color. I called tech support for it once because I wanted to do a factory reset, but how to do so was not described anywhere obvious in the operating instructions. I can't recall how to do the factory reset however, because I only ever did it once, so reliability is good.

  3. #3
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    Default check DC Rainmaker site

    Quote Originally Posted by Steve O View Post
    So I need a replacement. I've heard people proclaim allegiance to Wahoo, and others tout their various Garmins. ...
    Thanks for your ideas and suggestions.
    The DC Rainmaker website does a fantastic job of reviewing all things bicycle tech. See this link for the most recent Sports Technology Buyers Guide. There are more recent reviews of technology in the Product Reviews link.

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    Also worth considering from a price standpoint are the Lezyne GPS units. Not quite as user-friendly as the Wahoo experience from my recollection, but slightly friendlier to the pocketbook.

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    Both Sarah and I have Lezyne GPS units. (Mega XL specifically). This biggest differences between Lezyne and others is that it works in conjunction with its smartphone app to provide navigation capabilities. By not having to put the brain into the unit, it accomplishes two things: Much lower cost and much longer battery life. Think of it as a hybrid between old school bike computers and ones that can host a Zoom meeting.

    Lezyne does not require any additional external sensors to record a ride, although plenty of options are available. On its own, it provides GPS track/breadcrumbs, or one can download a local map to provide mapping info (but not navigation), but often times being able to see where a street goes to is all I wanted to know. When used in conjunction with the app/phone, it provides the route overlay in the map and turn-by-turn instructions, it can also do other things such display incoming calls, email, and/or text messages. The app also provides the sync to other apps such as Strava.

    My unit is rated for 48hr runtime, so I can do almost a week worth of riding on a single charge. Lastly, Lezyne units are roughly half the cost of comparable Garmin or Wahoo units, often discounts can make it even less.

  7. #6
    TwoWheelsDC's Avatar
    TwoWheelsDC is offline I really need to log off the internet and go for a ride.
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    If you want a free one I have a 510 that I found like a year or two ago and was never claimed (I tried finding the owner on Twitter to no avail). Not sure how well the battery has held up after sitting in a box all that time, but you're free to see if it works.

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    Default It's time for a new GPS receiver / bike computer

    Iím an obsessive techie and currently have an Edge 1030 that I absolutely love. Best Garmin Iíve ever had (started with an Edge 705 10 or so years ago). Battery life is incredible plus it has an optional additional external battery (I donít have this) that mounts below it to give you some ridiculous amount of battery life (24-48 hours or so, I think). But now there is a *new* Edge 1030 Plus that of course I have to *consider* (assuming Iím ever allowed to ride again after my recent DVT/hypertension/$#!+$#0w experience). So I might have a 1030 available for some poor schmo at a reasonable ($0) price should you not procure other devices. Contact me off list.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    Last edited by kwarkentien; 08-09-2020 at 08:39 PM.

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