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Thread: Garmin GPS

  1. #1
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    Garmin GPS

    Ok, I have been reading this forum for the last month about GPS devises. It is official I am more confused now then when I first started the search. First off let me give a little background on my needs & wants. Presently I am using my iPhone 4 as my GPS & fitness computer. Using my iPhone has been good, although I didn't like when because of the extreme heat it suggested I shut it down. I think I need something a little tougher then the iPhone. The thought of crashing and wasting the phone and all my contacts is too much to bear. I have really enjoyed the Apps that are avail on the iPhone. I am presently using "run-keeper".

    I am getting into MTB more and more. I am presently riding the 2012 Trek MAMBA. I am still getting aquatinted with it and trying to get my fitness level higher before I start hitting the trails. Ok. my wants are simple, I like the idea of having a GPS/computer to record my travels. I like the idea if it tells me how my ride was and also display a sort GPS map as to let me know where I am going and where I came. I like the color display of the Etrak 20 and I like the idea of a Cycle specific GPS unit in the EDGE 500. Needless to say the price of the two units is approx the amount of what I want to spend. I am just confused why aren't more riders using the Etrak??? And why do so many riders use the Edge 500?? AM I missing something? The graphics on the Etrak appear to be far superior then the Edge. Just would like to have some guidance as to wear to go, Thanks for your help!

  2. #2
    sheep in FOX clothing
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    For one, the Etrex is probably 5 times the size of the Edge 500.

    Looked huge when I had it mounted on my bars.

  3. #3
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    The Etrex is much bigger

    If you want to be able to do any type of mapping the Edge 500 is not for you. Even though it says it can do breadcrumb trail it really not true. It can upload a ride and follow it but because the unit does not allow you to zoom its useless for navigation. The map it has is there basically just to allow you to use the virtual partner and previous attempts. The Edge 500 will work with a HRM and Power meters.

    The Etrex will not do virtual partner (No biggie) I don't think it was let you use a HRM (No biggie for me). If its like my Oregon it does not allow you to start and stop the recording which means if the unti is on its recording. So if you are timing rides the second you pull it out and start messing with it it starts recording then I reset it to start my ride (which is hidden in menus) then I have to delete the files that I don't want. Plus its huge.

    Look into the Edge 305. Its an older unit but I think its the best value in the line up. It does everything a 500 does except power. It also can display a useable bread crumb trail that can get you back to your car in unknown areas, and is able to upload rides in the basically dead .crs format. So getting a flie into it requires conversion tools, which for me seem to only work about 50% of the time.
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    yes, the etrex is bigger than the Edge 500. It does not allow you to use a power meter, but it DOES let you use a HRM and speed/cad sensor (the etrex 20 and 30, anyway, but not the 10).

    the Oregon and other similar models use a very similar OS that has dashboards to change the trip computer page. There is one dashboard that provides a start/stop button and a reset button. It does not have autopause, however. You have to do that manually if you want to pause. I personally don't care. I also don't really care much about the start/stop functionality. I had an Edge 705 for awhile (another option for you) and I am not THAT interested in my timing that I care about a couple seconds it takes me to push that button. On my Oregon, I reset the active tracklog and ride stats prior to setting off. yeah, there's a couple seconds of delay between resetting the GPS and starting my ride, but that's not important. I have a cheap Forerunner for those times that I do care.

    The real reason I see that more people don't ride with a new etrex is that the current model lineup is pretty new. The Edge 500 has been around longer. Prior to the new etrexes, the older ones were pretty well outdated and folks moved to other models for the handheld market. The Oregons serve well as multipurpose devices, and they were around sooner than the etrex series was updated. It takes awhile for folks to change up their GPS hardware. Few people buy a new one every year or so. Most keep them for several years. I've been using an Oregon 450 since late in 2010 and have no desire to replace it completely, though the fenix is really tempting to add to my GPS collection.

    what you decide to use will depend on what features you actually want. If mapping capability is important to you, the etrex 20 is going to be about as low as you can go in price and get full-featured mapping capability. If you want cycling-specific fitness functionality, many handhelds offer some capability there, but it's reduced compared to the Edge models. If you want things like autopause, virtual partner, power meter capability (among others), you will have to go with an Edge model. If you want basic mapping, the Edge 305 would be the cheapest way to get it. Slightly better mapping (and power meter capability) from the Edge 705. Full featured mapping and cycling-specific functionality from the Edge 800. You pay for it, of course.

    Assuming that $200 (retail cost) is about what you're looking to spend, don't discount used models, refurbs, and sale prices on other models. The Dakota 20/30 are good receivers with similar OS capability to the etrex. I got my Oregon 450 on sale a few years ago for $250 brand new. I have seen sales for them at around $230 within the past year, and I know a guy who picked up a used Oregon 550 for about $200 recently. Yeah, they're bigger than the Edge 500, but within acceptable range for me. Bigger than an Oregon is unacceptable for me on the bike. Race-oriented riders would think otherwise. but I value user-replaceable batteries over rechargeables for extended time in the backcountry for simplicity's sake.

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    Thank you everybody for your informative responses. I have eliminated the edge 500. For the cost it doesn't make much sense to me with the lack of features it has. I like the idea of seeing the roads and paths that I am on so the etrek and Oregon are my two options. I have a bike computer already so I don't need to know speed as much as I need to know miles traveled and where I am going. I am still doing my research, once again I thank you all for input. I still have a bit more of analyzing to do! Thanks.

  6. #6
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    If you don't need the fitness/training features of the edge OR
    you want mapping capability to upload networks of trails to follow, Go with the eTrex!
    Smaller than the Oregon, good mapping capabilities.
    @ 5 ounces, it is 2.5x heavier, but still very little weight.
    2,000+ miles free Colorado FrontRange GPS enabled bike trails w/map overlays.
    View network via GoogleEarth @ GeoBiking.org

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    My only question is how if able would I be able to use Strava??? I have been reading alot of stuff on this program and wondered if that would work with etrek? So far I have been leaning towards to etrek over the edge, however the Edge

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by jjmmagoo4 View Post
    My only question is how if able would I be able to use Strava??? I have been reading alot of stuff on this program and wondered if that would work with etrek? So far I have been leaning towards to etrek over the edge, however the Edge
    Download the .gpx file from the etrex and upload to strava. Pretty simple. I sometimes use my etrex 30 for cycling, and it works well for what you describe.

    -D

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    Thanks Diesel!
    I don't know if I made a mistake or not but looking at eBay there was a listing for a Garmin Etrek 30 for like $30!!! This is the link: http://rover.ebay.com/rover/0/e11400...OC%3AUS%3A3160

    I thought I read the discription an it looked like I was getting th real deal!? For $30 I'll take a flyer on it. We shall see, I know the old saying "there's a sucker born every minute" but maybe just maybe....

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by jjmmagoo4 View Post
    Thanks Diesel!
    I don't know if I made a mistake or not but looking at eBay there was a listing for a Garmin Etrek 30 for like $30!!! This is the link: http://rover.ebay.com/rover/0/e11400...OC%3AUS%3A3160

    I thought I read the discription an it looked like I was getting th real deal!? For $30 I'll take a flyer on it. We shall see, I know the old saying "there's a sucker born every minute" but maybe just maybe....
    Glad I found this thread, just ordered one myself! Hopefully we're not a pair of suckers

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by whoopwhoop View Post
    Glad I found this thread, just ordered one myself! Hopefully we're not a pair of suckers
    Fingers crossed!! I know it has to be catch somewhere!!!

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by jjmmagoo4 View Post
    Fingers crossed!! I know it has to be catch somewhere!!!
    I didn't notice till after I committed to buy but the seller has zero feedback rating, not a good sign....

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    Quote Originally Posted by whoopwhoop View Post
    I didn't notice till after I committed to buy but the seller has zero feedback rating, not a good sign....

    I noticed that as well but eBay does have that buyer protect & I used my Amex card so I should be covered. But for what it's worth it's only $30!... The last time I looked at the listing there were like 5 people that bought one. So I do have hope. Maybe these units fell off the back of a truck and this person needs to make a quick buck???!!! Lol

  14. #14
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    I took the plunge too. Seems way to good to be real but it's only 30$

    Sent from my cm_tenderloin using Tapatalk 2

  15. #15
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    Well Ebay has removed the listing, so I think we're SOL.

  16. #16
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    Knew it was to good to be true! Oh well back drawing board!

    Wouldn't it have been nice if this was a legit offer??? Lol

  17. #17
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    Anyone try a refund yet?

    Sent from my cm_tenderloin using Tapatalk 2

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by NateHawk View Post
    the Oregon and other similar models use a very similar OS that has dashboards to change the trip computer page. There is one dashboard that provides a start/stop button and a reset button.
    Hey Nate, which dashboard have the start/stop button on oregon 450? I just got it and couldn't find a way to pause my tracks...

    Thanks fof your help.
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    Quote Originally Posted by lifanus View Post
    Hey Nate, which dashboard have the start/stop button on oregon 450? I just got it and couldn't find a way to pause my tracks...

    Thanks fof your help.
    I believe the fitness one will do the trick.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by NateHawk View Post
    I believe the fitness one will do the trick.
    Alright, so I went in to the trip dashboard and didn't really find a place to pause current track, am I in the wrong place?



    Also went into maps in hope to find the pause function, doesn't seem like its got one. Hmmm...

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  21. #21
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    Looks like REI's labor day sale has the Garmins on sale, looks like the Oregon 450t is $269, probably will trickle down to the regular 450 and the etrex. I know that it is not quite as good as $30 etrex 30, but at least it is a reliable retailer.

  22. #22
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    Well I just bought the Etrex 30. I was mildly surprised how small it was. I looked at the Edge 500 at the store and saw the Edge 200, they were sold out of the Edge 800 but I liked the features of the Etrex 30 a little more over the other two so I went the Etrex 30. So now that I have the GPS now what do I do??? I mean I have no idea what I am doing with this thing. I like to think I am pretty good with gadgets but I am stumped on this thing. Any help out there would be greatly appreciated!

  23. #23
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    I also just got a Dakota 20 (touchscreen version of the etrex 30) so we can be gps clueless buddies.

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    Quote Originally Posted by beanbag View Post
    I also just got a Dakota 20 (touchscreen version of the etrex 30) so we can be gps clueless buddies.
    I have no idea what I am doing! Very embarrassing. Good thing I don't go camping! I bought this because I already have a bike computer so I thought this would be a good idea. Little did I know I need to buy maps! I am using base camp and have made a new route but it wont transfer to the Etrex 30. Thinking about taking it back and just getting a EDGE 500 and calling it a day. I really dont want to have to go for money if I dont have too!

  25. #25
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    www.gpsfiledepot.com will get you started

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