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  1. #1
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    looking for my first gps... help appreciated

    alright, so i'm looking into my first gps..

    1) i personally dont care about my cadence or heart rate, so do not really need those extras.
    2) want it for classic functions like ride time, total time, speed, trip distance, total distance, etc.
    3) want to be able to upload the info with computer
    4) want to be able to see where i am going on a map when riding (aka explore without not knowing how to get back)
    5) want to be able to save ridden tracks and compile maps.

    thanks for the help

  2. #2
    GeoMan
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    Edge 205 (B&W, breadcrumb path) or 605 (color, mapping). 605 gets my vote of the two.

    The 305's & 705's come with the whole enchilada including a barometric altimeter (a bit more accurate, so they say...).

    The 705's are expensive in comparison to all the others mentioned.
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  3. #3
    GPS_dr
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    Legend HCx, Vista HCx, at low end | 60/76 Cx/CSx or DeLorme PN40 all are great units with great sunlight visibilty and use AA batteries.

    Just checked the Edge 605/705 manual - apparently you can show more than one saved ride/track at a time, but warns that it may slow device. The Garmins above show up to 20 without issues. With the DeLorme, you copy the tracks to a draw layer and then can load as a map overlay. Allows you to view literally hundreds of rides over whatever type of map you want to load.
    2,000+ miles free Colorado FrontRange GPS enabled bike trails w/map overlays.
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  4. #4
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    I've been using my Legend Cx for 4 years on my rides.
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  5. #5
    Prez NMBA
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    +1 for the Vista HCx, best bang for the buck and solid as heck

  6. #6
    saddlemeat
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    Quote Originally Posted by nmba guy
    +1 for the Vista HCx, best bang for the buck and solid as heck
    +1, I have same criteria as OP, cheapest unit that will do the job well, have lost or broken too many to spend more than necessary. The Garmin bike handlebar mount is fine, been using one for 10+ years, had to put a piece of tape on the HCx mount to eliminate the rattle, but I have never had a single issue with it in use. I mount mine crossways on the stem with the bar mount as I don't look at it much when riding and it seems like it is more protected and doesn't affect my handlebar balance as much.

    I use mine for trail building and mapping, not for training.
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  7. #7
    Ologist
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    Vista hcx - not too big, many features, and solid construction. Handlebar mount works well, expandable memory for maps, and color screen. I think this is the best option unless you want a HR monitor with it.

  8. #8
    crashes in parkinglot
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    Quote Originally Posted by beauster
    alright, so i'm looking into my first gps..

    1) i personally dont care about my cadence or heart rate, so do not really need those extras.
    2) want it for classic functions like ride time, total time, speed, trip distance, total distance, etc.
    3) want to be able to upload the info with computer
    4) want to be able to see where i am going on a map when riding (aka explore without not knowing how to get back)
    5) want to be able to save ridden tracks and compile maps.

    thanks for the help
    I hope not to derail your thread. I've just sarted search for basically same functionality, and am considering two different units 1) Gamrin Legend HCx and 2) Delorme PN-20

    It looks like Garmin is the industry leader in GPS units (mostly from just looking at the titles of the posts on this board), and the higher sensitivity and ability to get a signal with the HCx does appeal to me (most of my rides will be in the mountains of CO). The ones thing that gets me is the cost of TOPO maps for the Garmin, it almost seams like I'll be spending as much of the GPS unit as I will be for maps.

    The Delorme looks like more of a complete package with TOPO maps already included. And for my first GPS, I don't want to break the bank. The HCx is reported to get within 9-10', does anyone know how accurate the PN-20 is? and how important is that accuracy and sensitivity for picking up a signal for CO mountain type trails?

    I am also looking to make notes on certain locations of a trail, is there any GPS unit that can add notes at way points?
    Last edited by EricTheRed; 08-07-2009 at 09:09 AM.
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  9. #9
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    Since Garmin is so mainstream, a lot of people make VERY good free maps for them, including colorado and surrounding states. Look here: http://www.gpsfiledepot.com/

    I've heard good things about the pn-20 also. Potential turnoffs, at least for me: reported slow redraw times for the maps, (probably fast enough for biking though), less runtime on the batteries, larger, and apparently there is quite a learning curve to loading the maps.

    In the end I got a Vista HCx, but really, I don't think you can go wrong either way.
    I'm looking forward to regretting this.......

  10. #10
    Masher
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    Don't get a PN-20... get the PN-40. Same chipset as Garmin Nuvi series. Accurate, and very fast redraws even with imagery. TOPO software of the entire US comes with it, and for $29.95 you can get a map library subscription to download all you want of imagery, USGS quads, etc.

  11. #11
    3 Legged Big Top
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    If you don't want or need HR or Cadence(cycling functions) then don't buy a cycling computer. I recommend the GPSMap 60 csx. Very powerful gps. It shows a lot of stuff I wished the Edge would show. Moving time to be the main piece of info I like to see but can't with Edge.

  12. #12
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    One of the Garmin eTrex series should work well for you. Pretty compact, the Vista is pretty feature-rich (compare to 60/76 series of GPSes), and should do all you want. Plus, these units are not bike-specific so if you do other activities like hiking, or geocaching, or most anything in the woods, you can use them there, too. The 60/76 receivers are only slightly better (mostly better user interface), and a slightly better antenna, with a jack to attach an external antenna (but they're big).

    The Edge receivers are pretty much bike specific. They are not good tools for other activities, but they can be used for a few other things. But, there's nothing better for bike-specific use than an Edge. A Forerunner comes close, but is more a general fitness GPS, but its ideal use is for running.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by gps_dr
    Legend HCx, Vista HCx, at low end | 60/76 Cx/CSx or DeLorme PN40 all are great units with great sunlight visibilty and use AA batteries.

    Just checked the Edge 605/705 manual - apparently you can show more than one saved ride/track at a time, but warns that it may slow device. The Garmins above show up to 20 without issues. With the DeLorme, you copy the tracks to a draw layer and then can load as a map overlay. Allows you to view literally hundreds of rides over whatever type of map you want to load.
    Just out of curiousity, what is the physical size difference between those mentioned and the Garmin Edge series? I have seen a picture of a hiking computer attached to handlebars and it looked awkward. Do those mentioned come with handlebar mounts??

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by FireLikeIYA
    Just out of curiousity, what is the physical size difference between those mentioned and the Garmin Edge series? I have seen a picture of a hiking computer attached to handlebars and it looked awkward. Do those mentioned come with handlebar mounts??
    Typically, no, you have to buy the mount extra. I have a 76 CSx, and it's huge. It's a good size for handholding (and fitting all the extra buttons on), but I jury-rigged a stem mount for mine. It still hangs over the ends. The others mentioned aren't quite as big as mine. The ETrex models (legend, vista) are much smaller and less clumsy on the hbars.


  15. #15
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    I just switched from the 305 to the 705. I do use the HR and cad features so I like the Edge series.

    I wanted to do more navigation and moved to the 705 due to the larger color screen and ability to load maps. I have the City Nav and Cal topo maps. So far they seem to work really well together. I am just beginning to tap into the navigational potential of the 705 but so far I am please with the results.

    I believe the 605 may also be a good option if you never plan to use HR and cad. I am pretty amazed at all the technogy employed in the 705 and have only begun to use it's full potential.

  16. #16
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    I guess nobody likes timex stuff. But I do, I have a trailrunner bodylink system and it does all you need (other than direct mapping.) It doesn't actually show you the map until you upload it onto the computer, but it does have waypoint tracking and other forms of navigation. Great system I love it, and its a hell lot less bulky than all these systems I'm seeing. Great for running/hiking too. I use it for running. Just a watch, heart rate strap, and a gps unit arm band.

  17. #17
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    lost my Garmin etrex Venture HC, liked it so much I got another one.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by dang1
    lost my Garmin etrex Venture HC, liked it so much I got another one.
    That looks like it is pratically a Garmin 605.... For 200 bucks less.

    Anyone try the Garmin Dakota 10? I just noticed that they have a bike and hike version that comes with handlebar mounts. It also comes with city navigator, its compact, accepts AA batteries, and has a nice big 2.6 inch screen.
    Last edited by FireLikeIYA; 08-08-2009 at 09:01 AM.

  19. #19
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    It appears that the Dakota 20 may work with ANT+ protocol, so you *might* be able to use your Garmin heart rate strap, cadence sensor, and perhaps a power meter with the Dakota 20! Would love it if someone could confirm my theory.

  20. #20
    trail rat
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    Quote Originally Posted by rfxc
    It appears that the Dakota 20 may work with ANT+ protocol, so you *might* be able to use your Garmin heart rate strap, cadence sensor, and perhaps a power meter with the Dakota 20! Would love it if someone could confirm my theory.
    Do you have a link that supports the ANT+ use? I can find that it will use an optional HRM and/or cadence sensor to display data, but I do not think it stores that data. There is no mention of ANT+ in the manual and that would be needed for a power meter.
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  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pooolio
    I guess nobody likes timex stuff. But I do, I have a trailrunner bodylink system and it does all you need (other than direct mapping.) It doesn't actually show you the map until you upload it onto the computer, but it does have waypoint tracking and other forms of navigation. Great system I love it, and its a hell lot less bulky than all these systems I'm seeing. Great for running/hiking too. I use it for running. Just a watch, heart rate strap, and a gps unit arm band.
    Since that automatically violates rule #4 of the OP, no map display on the receiver, that GPS would not fulfill his wants. That receiver seems to more directly compare with receivers in the Forerunner line, except the Forerunners don't have a separate arm band for the GPS. That is inside the watch already.

    I'm not sure why I'd use something like that hiking, though. If I bring my GPS hiking, I want the map display. Otherwise, I leave it home and use an old fashioned map & compass. Without a map display, a GPS would be useless to me on a hike.

  22. #22
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    Sorry, it looks like it will work with HR and cadence, not ANT+. http://www.gpscity.com/garmin-dakota...fications.html

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by NateHawk
    Typically, no, you have to buy the mount extra. I have a 76 CSx, and it's huge. It's a good size for handholding (and fitting all the extra buttons on), but I jury-rigged a stem mount for mine. It still hangs over the ends. The others mentioned aren't quite as big as mine. The ETrex models (legend, vista) are much smaller and less clumsy on the hbars.

    I was looking at buying the same mount for my 76CSx on ebay.
    Now the one they sell is a handlebar mount was it hard to mount yours the way you have it?
    Do you have any problem with that mount holding the unit after flying off a jump or hitting big bumps?
    Sorry for the late reply on this tread.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lino.
    I was looking at buying the same mount for my 76CSx on ebay.
    Now the one they sell is a handlebar mount was it hard to mount yours the way you have it?
    Do you have any problem with that mount holding the unit after flying off a jump or hitting big bumps?
    Sorry for the late reply on this tread.
    All I did was wrap some sandpaper around a seatpost (30.9, IIRC) and sand off material until it rougly fit, and then a little bit of rubber from computer mounts to damp vibrations and hold it in place.

    It's held up when I've used it. I don't have a lot of use on it, though. I haven't been on the bike for about 9mos due to illness, so I can't speak to durability much. I mostly keep my rubber on the ground, so no jumps. And the trails I ride aren't real technical or rough so I've not been able to test that aspect. As you see, I do use the wrist lanyard as a backup tether in case the GPS does come off, I won't lose it.

    My only complaint is the size of the GPS. I've since bought an Edge 705.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by NateHawk
    All I did was wrap some sandpaper around a seatpost (30.9, IIRC) and sand off material until it rougly fit, and then a little bit of rubber from computer mounts to damp vibrations and hold it in place.

    It's held up when I've used it. I don't have a lot of use on it, though. I haven't been on the bike for about 9mos due to illness, so I can't speak to durability much. I mostly keep my rubber on the ground, so no jumps. And the trails I ride aren't real technical or rough so I've not been able to test that aspect. As you see, I do use the wrist lanyard as a backup tether in case the GPS does come off, I won't lose it.

    My only complaint is the size of the GPS. I've since bought an Edge 705.
    Thanks.
    I have the 76CSx because it is one of the best for my other hobby, spearfishing.
    I use it for track how far I have gone more than anything, and I do love the unit, I myself am not into taking extreme jumps, but I would like to try some trails.

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