I recently took up a program in preparation for the Perth Crit Series and was advised that I would need a heart rate (hr) monitor to undertake the training. Several friends already use them and thought I would see what they were all about.
When it comes to hr bike computers Polar and Garmin are to 2 main contendors. I probably could have gone either way but the large screen and customisable display appealed along with the Garmin Connect website to archive/map your rides.
Out of the box the very quick setup was great, even for a technophobe the Garmins are a doddle being that they operate on GPS there is no wheel size setting etc. Basically charge it up enter some personal details when prompted and off you go. The only annoying thing is that they come with manual pause as default so you have to remember to turn it off so your timer doesn’t keep running when you stop for a coffee. A cool feature to turn on is the ‘auto lap’, being that it uses GPS it will detect laps done when on a circuit such as crits races or the Early Bird TT’s in Kings Park
The Edge 500’s display has several pages that you can customise according to the data you want to monitor while riding with heaps of information options to choose from along with the regulars. At the end of the ride, after opening up a Garmin Connect online account, you can upload your ride.
The ride is plotted on a map which in turn can be used to see what you were doing and when ie what hr at what speed at what part of the ride. All this data is displayed graphically and also in a numeric table on the side.
The Edge 500 can be charged from a wall outlet or from usb via the ‘puter and lasts about 4-5 rides of around 2-3hours.
While I don’t use one the Edge 500 is compatible with all third party ANT+ enabled power meters. Check the link out for all the tech and spec features. You can buy the head unit alone alone with all the accessories or as a bundle that has it all.
The Edge 200 is going to make it very hard to sell any other computer. Wireless is the way forward but sensorless is even better. This is a simplified version of the more advanced models and is a ‘real plug in and play’. Charge it up and you are ready to go. While it doesn’t store cadence and heart rate is does store all the normal bike computer features then maps your ride via GPS on Garmin Connect to view. Check out the link to the specs.
Please note our pricing is inline with the Garmin Australia site.