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  1. #1
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    New Garmin Edge 500

    Announced today on the Garmin Blog.


    Weighing a mere 2 ounces, Garmin's newly announced Edge 500 cycling GPS features a high-sensitivity GPS receiver, requires no calibration, can be switched quickly and easily between bicycles and connects wirelessly with ANT+™ compatible third-party power meters. “Using feedback from the best focus group imaginable – the Pro Tour cyclists of Team Garmin-Slipstream, we’ve developed a lightweight cycling computer that’s powerful enough for the pros yet simple enough for beginners,” said Dan Bartel, Garmin’s vice president of worldwide sales.

    “Since becoming our title sponsor, Garmin has guaranteed that we have the best technology available,” said Team Garmin’s Christian Vande Velde, fresh off his top-8 finish in France in July. “At training camp we made requests: we wanted a smaller device with a big screen, easy-to-use buttons and sturdier mount. Garmin listened. The Edge 500 reflects our requests and then some, adding vertical speed, accurate calories and temperature readings.”
    Looks like an ANT+ capable 305 with black and white and no map upload ability. Roadies with power meters rejoice!
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  2. #2
    Scott in Tucson
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    Thanks for the heads up. Looks like most MTBers can skip this one. 2 ounces is pretty light, though!
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  3. #3
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    Not sure if this is roadies only, I honestly never use the mapping function while riding. This has the new calorie calculation, outside temp and the same accessory inputs as the 705. Also the new more secure bike mount. Seems like a great unit if you want 705 functionality but do not need color maps and want to pay less than half the price.

    Also, has claimed 18 hour battery life, which would be good if one can get that much (tracking a 12 hour race or an epic event would be cool).
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  4. #4
    Scott in Tucson
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    Good points.
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  5. #5
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    While I may not use the map function of the 705 on familiar rides, I do use it on unfamiliar ones. I would pass on this GPS...because I need/want the map screen and/or the trackback function when I'm at a new place, especially one with no paper maps, signs, and a confusing network of trails. This thing is just a very expensive basic cycling computer that happens to get its data from GPS instead of a wheel sensor. While maybe not just roadies would use it, I expect most buyers of this receiver would be roadies.

    Quote Originally Posted by gstahl
    Not sure if this is roadies only, I honestly never use the mapping function while riding. This has the new calorie calculation, outside temp and the same accessory inputs as the 705. Also the new more secure bike mount. Seems like a great unit if you want 705 functionality but do not need color maps and want to pay less than half the price.

    Also, has claimed 18 hour battery life, which would be good if one can get that much (tracking a 12 hour race or an epic event would be cool).

  6. #6
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    So when does the 705 replacement come out? Answer - likely tomorrow since my 705 just got delivered by fedex today lol

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by NateHawk
    While I may not use the map function of the 705 on familiar rides, I do use it on unfamiliar ones. I would pass on this GPS...because I need/want the map screen and/or the trackback function when I'm at a new place, especially one with no paper maps, signs, and a confusing network of trails. This thing is just a very expensive basic cycling computer that happens to get its data from GPS instead of a wheel sensor. While maybe not just roadies would use it, I expect most buyers of this receiver would be roadies.

    While I have used the mapping a couple of times, the vast majority of my rides are now in familiar territory where I never even look at the maps. I am using my 705 more as a bike computer with the benefit of logging stats and maps on the computer to see which routes I took. I would have given this a serious look when I bought the 705 and on paper would recommend it to anyone who isn't exploring new trails.

  8. #8
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    This looks to be a downgrade from the 305.

    Looking at the specs... no route or waypoint storage, no virtual partner, workouts, pace alerts, interval training.

    So it's got better battery life and can talk with wireless power meters but it strips a bunch of features in the process. I also think the unit looks kinda ugly, I like the look of my 305 better, but that's subjective

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by gstahl
    Not sure if this is roadies only, I honestly never use the mapping function while riding. This has the new calorie calculation, outside temp and the same accessory inputs as the 705. Also the new more secure bike mount. Seems like a great unit if you want 705 functionality but do not need color maps and want to pay less than half the price.

    Also, has claimed 18 hour battery life, which would be good if one can get that much (tracking a 12 hour race or an epic event would be cool).
    I think it has a place for everyone. My roadies rejoice comment was with friends who wanted a GPS with ANT+ for their power taps, but did not want the price of the 705 or need that mapping ability.

    It would work just like my 305 that went for almost four years, and it will work great. I am just spoiled now with the 705 since it will do everything I want AND give me good navigation and route finding when I need it.

    The features and price make it a winner, I have no doubt.
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  10. #10
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    Does it have a barometric altimeter? If not, the cumulative altitude is going to be way off; better off with a 305.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by MikeDee
    Does it have a barometric altimeter? If not, the cumulative altitude is going to be way off; better off with a 305.
    Yes. Click here.
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  12. #12
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    I'll pass on this. It seems a bit silly to me to release a new GPS computer that doesn't do what GPS is best at: recording routes, and following routes.

    The newish Forerunner 310XT seems like a much better bike computer. It does routes, workout functions, has ANT+ power compatibility, and longer battery life that the new Edge 500. AND you can wear it on your wrist for other activities if you wish.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by TwoWheelMan
    I'll pass on this. It seems a bit silly to me to release a new GPS computer that doesn't do what GPS is best at: recording routes, and following routes.
    Read the Garmin page carefully, it records a track and you can compare different rides over the same course. You can upload rides to GTC and Connect for analysis, you just cannot set waypoints or upload them, and you cannot upload a track to the unit as a route to follow. It is still a GPS that records a track though.
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  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by slocaus
    Read the Garmin page carefully, it records a track and you can compare different rides over the same course. You can upload rides to GTC and Connect for analysis, you just cannot set waypoints or upload them, and you cannot upload a track to the unit as a route to follow. It is still a GPS that records a track though.
    Fair point. The Edge 500 will record. For me the inability to follow a course (route, track whatever one calls it) is a deal breaker. As far as I can tell it doesn't do that? I don't need a fancy map display like the Edge 705etc, but do want the ability to upload a course to the unit, and follow it using a simple direction arrow and basic navigation info such as distance remaining. I use this a lot on the mtb and on the road.

    My forerunner 405 does most of what I want -- but the interface is awful and battery life too short.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by TwoWheelMan
    Fair point. The Edge 500 will record. For me the inability to follow a course (route, track whatever one calls it) is a deal breaker. As far as I can tell it doesn't do that? I don't need a fancy map display like the Edge 705etc, but do want the ability to upload a course to the unit, and follow it using a simple direction arrow and basic navigation info such as distance remaining. I use this a lot on the mtb and on the road.

    My forerunner 405 does most of what I want -- but the interface is awful and battery life too short.
    TwoWheelMan, can you help answer this question I posted in another thread? I'm trying to find out if the Forerunner 305 will let me do what you are describing. I just want something to tell me when I am off track or took a wrong turn. Only need it on about 10% of the rides - the rest is on trails I know well.

    perhaps the 310 is a better choice now?

    Thanks very much in advance.

    EJ

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by ejfiii
    TwoWheelMan, can you help answer this question I posted in another thread? I'm trying to find out if the Forerunner 305 will let me do what you are describing. I just want something to tell me when I am off track or took a wrong turn. Only need it on about 10% of the rides - the rest is on trails I know well.

    perhaps the 310 is a better choice now?

    Thanks very much in advance.

    EJ
    I don't have the 305, but I checked the PDF of the manual and it is very similar to my 405 in navigation features. Actually the 305 is a bit better, in that it actually has a rudimentary map view of your uploaded course, which shows your current position in relation to the course (it doesn't have a basemap though, so there is no detail about topography or streets).

    So, the answer is yes, the 305 should do what you want. You can upload a previous course, or create a new course on your computer** and upload it to the 305. Then, select 'Do Course' on the 305, and choose the desired course. Using a direction arrow, the 305 will tell you which direction you should be going to stay on a course. If you get off the course, it will tell you which direction to go to get back on the course. Or you can use the rudimentary map view to see if you are north, south, east etc of your course.

    The Forerunner 310 looks nice but you may not need it's features: display and recording of power data from a PowerTap etc, longer battery life, and sufficient waterproofness for swimming.

    The Forerunner 405 would do what you want too, but the touch bezel interface is BS. And the battery life with the GPS on is <8hrs, which is too short for a lot of what I do on the bike.

    Have fun with it.

    ** If you end up getting a Forerunner, I recommend checking out SportTracks software for downloading and storing your rides and courses. Much better than Garmin's software in my experience.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by TwoWheelMan
    Fair point. The Edge 500 will record. For me the inability to follow a course (route, track whatever one calls it) is a deal breaker. As far as I can tell it doesn't do that? I don't need a fancy map display like the Edge 705etc, but do want the ability to upload a course to the unit, and follow it using a simple direction arrow and basic navigation info such as distance remaining. I use this a lot on the mtb and on the road.

    My forerunner 405 does most of what I want -- but the interface is awful and battery life too short.
    Agreed. If I was buying now and to choose between the 305 and 500, the 305 would win hands down. Now that I have a 705 and my first GPS was a 60CSx, for me the 705 is the best choice, but I am a map geek.

    Quote Originally Posted by ejfiii
    TwoWheelMan, can you help answer this question I posted in another thread? I'm trying to find out if the Forerunner 305 will let me do what you are describing. I just want something to tell me when I am off track or took a wrong turn. Only need it on about 10% of the rides - the rest is on trails I know well.

    perhaps the 310 is a better choice now?

    Thanks very much in advance.

    EJ
    Don't trust my answer eh?

    I did some further research for you. The Edge 305 and Forerunner 305 share the same basic chipset and functions (305 = 305). The screen size and antennas are different, and the form factor obviously but all functions are the same. So definitive YES that you can upload courses and follow them. You have to check the screen though to see if you make the right turn or go off route.
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  18. #18
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    Thank you both so much - I really appreciate it.

    Slocaus - I was waiting and hoping someone else might follow up your post.

    Again - thank you both for the help!

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by slocaus
    Agreed. If I was buying now and to choose between the 305 and 500, the 305 would win hands down. Now that I have a 705 and my first GPS was a 60CSx, for me the 705 is the best choice, but I am a map geek.
    I wouldn't mind a 705 one bit (or whatever Garmin comes up with next) I use my 60CSx on my motorbike, car, hiking, and once in a blue moon for riding. The Forerunner is a nice complement for my purposes, and used for most aerobic activities... small, wristable if needed, and minimal but just enough navigation.

    Back on topic.. I do think that this new 500 would have been perfect for a lot of road riders if it had had basic nav...

    when it comes down to it though... all these gadgets are pretty amazing!

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  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by TwoWheelMan
    I don't have the 305, but I checked the PDF of the manual and it is very similar to my 405 in navigation features. Actually the 305 is a bit better, in that it actually has a rudimentary map view of your uploaded course, which shows your current position in relation to the course (it doesn't have a basemap though, so there is no detail about topography or streets).

    So, the answer is yes, the 305 should do what you want. You can upload a previous course, or create a new course on your computer** and upload it to the 305. Then, select 'Do Course' on the 305, and choose the desired course. Using a direction arrow, the 305 will tell you which direction you should be going to stay on a course. If you get off the course, it will tell you which direction to go to get back on the course. Or you can use the rudimentary map view to see if you are north, south, east etc of your course.

    The Forerunner 310 looks nice but you may not need it's features: display and recording of power data from a PowerTap etc, longer battery life, and sufficient waterproofness for swimming.

    The Forerunner 405 would do what you want too, but the touch bezel interface is BS. And the battery life with the GPS on is <8hrs, which is too short for a lot of what I do on the bike.

    Have fun with it.

    ** If you end up getting a Forerunner, I recommend checking out SportTracks software for downloading and storing your rides and courses. Much better than Garmin's software in my experience.
    Hey, I just wanted to follow up on this, being that I've owned both the Forerunner 405 and Forerunner 305. For navigation, the Forerunner 305 is superior to the 405. The 305 at least allows you to follow a "breadcrumb" path on the screen. The 405 allows you to follow a course, but the lack of a breadcrumb screen sometimes makes navigation difficult. It will tell you to turn right or left at certain points, or point you in the direction you need to go, but if you go off course, well good luck getting back on course without at least the breadcrumb.

    I'm hoping the Edge 500 will at least have a breadcrumb screen. I really think that's all you need. It doesn't take long to map out a course using bikeroutetoaster.com or mapmyride.com and transfer it to the unit. Once you have that, you can follow the breadcrumb and safely make it back home. Which is a big deal for me because I've moved around a bit and frequently bike in unfamiliar areas. Having the Edge 705 would obviously be even better, but that obviously comes at a cost.

  22. #22
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    Seems to me that Garmin is trying to expand their market. The more a unit does, the more it costs and the more diverse are the groups clammering for their specific feature to be added. They want to sell both a 60csx AND an Edge 500 to the data freaks. Not a single Edge 705. Notice their newest GPS models: A dog tracker for hunters and a golf-specific model with built-in courses. They want to have as little functional overlap as the market will bear. Doubt we'll see a trend towards feature consolidation until / unless they start feeling heat from a competitor.

  23. #23
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    That dog tracker Astro receiver has been out for years. All of the touch screen handhelds are newer. They have quite a bit of feature integration, actually. I think even all of the Edge receivers are even newer than the Astro. The golf one is pretty new, though. It is clever, though. I can see how it would be useful.

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    Quote Originally Posted by eisidor
    Hey, I just wanted to follow up on this, being that I've owned both the Forerunner 405 and Forerunner 305. For navigation, the Forerunner 305 is superior to the 405. The 305 at least allows you to follow a "breadcrumb" path on the screen. The 405 allows you to follow a course, but the lack of a breadcrumb screen sometimes makes navigation difficult. It will tell you to turn right or left at certain points, or point you in the direction you need to go, but if you go off course, well good luck getting back on course without at least the breadcrumb.
    Thank you very much!

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by NateHawk
    That dog tracker Astro receiver has been out for years. All of the touch screen handhelds are newer. They have quite a bit of feature integration, actually. I think even all of the Edge receivers are even newer than the Astro. The golf one is pretty new, though. It is clever, though. I can see how it would be useful.
    Yeah, good point, I did let the hyperbole get the better of me... but I still think that Garmin is tending to specialize rather than generalize their products.

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