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  1. #1
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    Thinking about buying a Garmin Edge for XC riding... Need help deciding which one.

    Can someone help me out here. I want to buy a Garmin Edge for riding XC. Mountain biking is still fairly new to me and I haven't tried very many trails out there but thought a GPS would be a great toy to get myself more involved in riding. The following is a list of my expectations:

    1. Track history of where I have ridden for future use.
    2. Track mileage on my bike.
    3. Plan for future rides by preprogramming a map in the GPS from a third party website.
    4. Being able to track my fitness level and progress ( I have a watch style HRM already, should I get one on a GPS?).

    It appears that (with the exception of the HRM option) all of the Edge units can perform these functions. Being that I have never touched one of these unit before I am looking for input from others who have. I have thought about going with a 305 since it is cheaper and would not be as big of a loss if it were to break in a crash. I am now contemplating on whether or not to get a 605 or 705 since I would be keeping the unit for a long time and their GPS mapping capabilities appear to be better. From pictures I have seen online it almost appears that the 205/305 have very limited mapping abilities/directions but for mountain biking I am not sure how important the details are. Do the 205/305 even have topo maps? Any help is appreciated!

  2. #2
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    705 does everything the 305 does and adds color maps.
    both units are old so there is something better coming out (sooner rather than later.)
    for me the 705 screen is too small to read maps.
    I have the 305

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by FireLikeIYA
    Can someone help me out here. I want to buy a Garmin Edge for riding XC. Mountain biking is still fairly new to me and I haven't tried very many trails out there but thought a GPS would be a great toy to get myself more involved in riding. The following is a list of my expectations:

    1. Track history of where I have ridden for future use.
    2. Track mileage on my bike.
    3. Plan for future rides by preprogramming a map in the GPS from a third party website.
    4. Being able to track my fitness level and progress ( I have a watch style HRM already, should I get one on a GPS?).

    It appears that (with the exception of the HRM option) all of the Edge units can perform these functions. Being that I have never touched one of these unit before I am looking for input from others who have. I have thought about going with a 305 since it is cheaper and would not be as big of a loss if it were to break in a crash. I am now contemplating on whether or not to get a 605 or 705 since I would be keeping the unit for a long time and their GPS mapping capabilities appear to be better. From pictures I have seen online it almost appears that the 205/305 have very limited mapping abilities/directions but for mountain biking I am not sure how important the details are. Do the 205/305 even have topo maps? Any help is appreciated!
    You cannot upload or see topo maps in the 205/305.

    The 2/305 and 6/705 will do 1-2-4 above. You item 3 above is only possible with the 605/705. 605 will never allow you to add HRM or cadence / speed (only useful on a indoor trainer). The integrated HRM with the GPS data is very useful to me, and I used a computer plus a Polar HRM but could never intergrate the data. With the 305 or 705, it is easy. Here is an example of showing heart rate intensity on an aerial map using TopoFusion (www.topofusion.com)



    Here is the same ride showing elevation (thin grey line in background) vs heart rate over distance using SportTracks (http://www.zonefivesoftware.com/SportTracks)



    Here is the same ride uploaded to Garmin Connect in the player.
    http://connect.garmin.com/player/2815599

    Look at the lower panel where you can see time vs distance vs speed vs HR, etc.
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  4. #4
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    Slocaus, which model do you use? Do you feel that the extra features of the 705 are worth the $? Right now I am looking at roughly $160 for the 305 and $405 ($369 refurb) for the 705. I am wondering if it would be worth the wait to see what models come next in the Garmin Edge line as I imagine prices will drop with future models...

  5. #5
    trail rat
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    My 305 went about 3.5 years and I changed to the 705 about March this year. I should have gotten the 705 sooner. I also own a 60CSx that was my first GPS. If I was buying now, I would get a 705, it can replace the 60CSx for what I do. Check with GeoMan www.geomangear.com, he is a MTBR member and has great prices and outstanding service.
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  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by slocaus
    My 305 went about 3.5 years and I changed to the 705 about March this year. I should have gotten the 705 sooner. I also own a 60CSx that was my first GPS. If I was buying now, I would get a 705, it can replace the 60CSx for what I do. Check with GeoMan www.geomangear.com, he is a MTBR member and has great prices and outstanding service.
    Thank you for posting the graphs... It really helps to see what these things can do. I am sold on the 705 and I think I have my co-worker (who is a road bicyclist) sold on it too after showing him the interactive graphs. I checked Geomangear.com and they didnt have a 705 listed on there so I guess I will give them a call. Thank you.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by FireLikeIYA
    Thank you for posting the graphs... It really helps to see what these things can do. I am sold on the 705 and I think I have my co-worker (who is a road bicyclist) sold on it too after showing him the interactive graphs. I checked Geomangear.com and they didnt have a 705 listed on there so I guess I will give them a call. Thank you.
    The biggest thing in the graphs is the power of the software programs. Both GPS versions will supply the data for the programs to give tremendous analysis options.

    The real difference between the 305 and 705 is in the maps loaded into the GPS and the ability to navigate using these maps. I'd still buy the 705, since I often explore old overgrown mining roads that are great trails now, if I can find the entrance.
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  8. #8
    It's carbon dontcha know.
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    Love my 705, had it over a year now and still find new useful features it can perform for me while riding.

  9. #9
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    I have another question regarding the 705; Is the mounting bracket small enough to mount thae Garmin on a 75mm stem or is that too short?

  10. #10
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    I have mine on a 70mm right now, and my SS has an 80mm. It fits fine, I have 5mm spacer above the stem on the 70mm stem, and use the Garmin wedge that comes with the mounts to lift the back of the unit so it does not rub on the topcap, so yes, it will almost certainly work.
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  11. #11
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    How sturdy is the mounting system? I ride a hardtail out here in the desert and the trails tend to get pretty choppy... Whats the likelihood of the unit falling off the bike?

  12. #12
    It's carbon dontcha know.
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    Never had a problem with mine coming out and I've done over 40mph down rough decents with mine during the 100mile NUE races.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by FireLikeIYA
    How sturdy is the mounting system? I ride a hardtail out here in the desert and the trails tend to get pretty choppy... Whats the likelihood of the unit falling off the bike?
    I have five mounts that I have had for between 3-4 years and have never broken one. They have been off and on different bikes and stems and probably remounted 20 times or more. I run a road bike, a 29er FS and a rigid SS with no troubles. Some have posted here that they break mounts getting the unit off and on, and it you broke the tab in a crash, you could loose it.

    I am careful and have never had one come loose on some really rough terrain.





    Garmin has recently beefed up the mounts according to this thread.
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  14. #14
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    Thank you for your quick responses. The pictures are very helpful. I'm looking forward to getting the new toy! GeoManGear doesnt have the 705 currently in stock until further notice from Garmin. I found the 705 on Ebay (new) for a very good price so I guess I will go with that seller. Thank you again for the help.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by FireLikeIYA
    Thank you for your quick responses. The pictures are very helpful. I'm looking forward to getting the new toy! GeoManGear doesnt have the 705 currently in stock until further notice from Garmin. I found the 705 on Ebay (new) for a very good price so I guess I will go with that seller. Thank you again for the help.
    Keep in mind that Garmin will not warranty eBay purchased units!
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  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by FireLikeIYA
    Thank you for your quick responses. The pictures are very helpful. I'm looking forward to getting the new toy! GeoManGear doesnt have the 705 currently in stock until further notice from Garmin. I found the 705 on Ebay (new) for a very good price so I guess I will go with that seller. Thank you again for the help.

    I learned my lesson not to buy electronics from ebay. I bought a badass remote for my home theater there. Turned out the item was a refurb (not mentioned on seller's page), and furthermore, it's not a properly repaired refurb. So, I'm stuck with a remote that randomly decides to change the channels and locks out inputs from the keypad. Only way to stop it is to remove the batteries. Not cool.

  17. #17
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    Besides GeoManGear where else would you recommend I try to purchase this unit from? It looks like they are on backorder until later this month....

  18. #18
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    become an REI member if you aren't already and buy there. If the item isn't a sale item or clearanced, you'll generate dividend dollars (how much depends on how you pay) to use at the store next spring. Their return policy is second-to-none if you don't like it. Unfortunately doesn't look like they have any, either. Just the 605 and 305.

    A quick google search turned up some, many of which appear to be at pretty shady stores. The rest I have no experience with, so I can't say.

  19. #19
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    Yeah, I am seeing a lot of shady looking shops when I do a google search as well. I did come across Full Cycles Bike Shop which was rated a top mtbr.com shop for 2008. Their site gives a very poor description of the Garmin 705 but it is on sale for $374 plus $8.77 shipping. I am about to place an order with them but still am somewhat hesitant.

    EDIT: They are on backorder as well. I found that the price listed was under their special order catelog - cyclocomputers and not under their normal listing for computers. The price shows that it is on sale although their normal listing does not. It seems like it may be a refurb although I called and was informed that it is not. Sounds like it may turn into a headache and a wait for the item so maybe I will keep looking.
    Last edited by FireLikeIYA; 08-05-2009 at 04:43 PM.

  20. #20
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    I have a question for you guys.

    How hard is it to take someone ELSE'S map, that they've posted on a blog or on Google Earth, etc, and download it to your 705 so you can get guidance while you're on trail as to which forks to take? I think this would be an awesome feature but it's not clear to me how easy it is from researching.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by donoman
    I have a question for you guys.

    How hard is it to take someone ELSE'S map, that they've posted on a blog or on Google Earth, etc, and download it to your 705 so you can get guidance while you're on trail as to which forks to take? I think this would be an awesome feature but it's not clear to me how easy it is from researching.
    Easy peasy. As long as where you want to grab the ride track from can export in a format that Garmin can accept. Most are good. Example:

    Here is one of my favorite rides.
    http://connect.garmin.com/activity/2815599

    Scroll down just a bit, and to left center you will see "Send to Device" click that and you can upload directly to your 705. Easy, like I said
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  22. #22
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    along the lines of using someone elses data....I suggest using TopoFusion (free version...or pay for it to remove some watermarks) to convert whatever format you get into the format your GPS accepts....whichever brand that is. I currently use a 705 because I like the ability to have a topo map behind my position and to be able to upload various tracks for long days involving different routes. FWIW...I've had mine for 14 months or so here in Arizona and have had no problems except for the release tab on the mount breaking off...I simply ordered a new one. I have never had an issue with the unit falling off the mount while riding. In the situations where I've wrecked....the unit has stayed on the bike and has taken some hits as well with no problems other than cosmetic scratches.

  23. #23
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    The Swiss Army knife of GPS file converters is GPS Babel.
    GPSBabel converts waypoints, tracks, and routes between popular GPS receivers and mapping programs. It also has powerful manipulation tools for such data.

    By flattening the Tower of Babel that the authors of various programs for manipulating GPS data have imposed upon us, it returns to us the ability to freely move our own waypoint data between the programs and hardware we choose to use.

    It contains extensive data manipulation abilities making it a convenient for server-side processing or as the backend for other tools.

    It does not convert, transfer, send, or manipulate maps. We process data that may (or may not be) placed on a map, such as waypoints, tracks, and routes.
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  24. #24
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    I've been looking for a 705 as well, also from a reputable dealer and can't find a single one. Seems like they just aren't avail and will be replaced soon so who knows if they will even ship any more

  25. #25
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    Hey slocaus. If you don't mind me asking; how long did it take you to learn how to do all that? I confess to being somewhat tech challenged, but man is that stuff slick.

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