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  1. #1
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    User opinions Garmin 305 vs 705

    For those who have at least looked at both, how did you like the additional features of the 705 over the 305? I am considering a training GPS for my bike (76 CSx is just huge) and I know I'd want the HRM and speed sensor (don't care about cadence, but apparently don't have a choice as speed sensor does both). Since both of these models use both features, I'm considering them both. Too bad there's not a 705 w/o power meter compatibilty, though...would probably be cheaper.

    I'd probably only use 100k topos on this thing (I have them already, and use them on my handheld) if I ended up with the 705. Just curious about the implementation of the maps with the screen size and all that. I know I'd prefer basemaps if given the choice, but I want to know how usable those maps are on the 705.

  2. #2
    It's carbon dontcha know.
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    Basemap is useless for anything constructive. Topo maps or CityNav maps work fine on or off road.

  3. #3
    3D guy
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    Look at Colorado Cyclist they seem to have 705 for $399 which seems to then be no brainer as the normal trade off is price versus mapping, color and expandability. Note, this is from a 305 person that does not want to spend $399 for these additional features (eg, unless you need/want the mapping the $400 versus $600-700 kind of price difference to me is not worth it).
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  4. #4
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    After much debate among my multiple personalities, I recently upgraded to the 705 from my aging 305 which needed a new battery. At $399, the jump is worth it IMHO. I'm not sure it is worth the full $650 they seem to be getting for the unit w/ City nav built in.

    The big differences are memory (you can fit an amazingly long history of rides and courses on the 705. I kept running out of memory w/ the 305. The display is larger and more readable. You can install free maps that are very good if you look around, but the built-in base map is not worth the upgrade from the 305. Battery life is much longer on the 705 - I'm thinking maybe twice as long.

    If you are seriously in to training, save your money and get a powertap. The 705, like the 305, is a toy. A fun and useful toy, but still a toy. However, if you only need the bike computer stuff, the 705 is no better than the 305 (other than battery life and slightly more readable display, and memory). The basic bike computer stuff is the same on both. The real plus of the 705 is being able to install better maps.

    Sorry for the rambling - I'm tired.

  5. #5
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    I already have Topo 100k (old version, no limit to # of GPS receivers you can use it with) and CIty Nav on DVD (no need to put that on a GPS used exclusively on a mtb). I also don't care about included basemaps...I know they're worthless.

    The extra memory is a nice feature I didn't catch during my comparisons. Geoman has refurbs for less money than Colorado Cyclist. Besides, I looked on CC and didn't find the 705 at such a great price...it just wasn't there. I saw the longer battery life. Looks like it lasts long enough to handle a couple avg rides for me before needing a recharge. Nice bonus. I'd like to use rechargeables on my other GPS, but I don't like how NiMH's lose capacity over time.

    I'm not buying a powertap...I'm not that serious. Just when I return to cycling after my recovery from leukemia, I will be WAY out of shape and I will need to stay on top of things to make sure I regain my fitness as quickly as I can. A simple HRM will do that.

    I have a HRM, and I have a GPS, so I could make do with what I have. Problem is my GPS is huge compared to the cycling models, and would like a smaller one (to reduce chances of impact on my knee, a tree, or whatever). If it integrated with a HRM, that'd be pretty cool, too.

  6. #6
    trail rat
    Reputation: slocaus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NateHawk
    For those who have at least looked at both, how did you like the additional features of the 705 over the 305? I am considering a training GPS for my bike (76 CSx is just huge) and I know I'd want the HRM and speed sensor (don't care about cadence, but apparently don't have a choice as speed sensor does both). Since both of these models use both features, I'm considering them both. Too bad there's not a 705 w/o power meter compatibilty, though...would probably be cheaper.

    I'd probably only use 100k topos on this thing (I have them already, and use them on my handheld) if I ended up with the 705. Just curious about the implementation of the maps with the screen size and all that. I know I'd prefer basemaps if given the choice, but I want to know how usable those maps are on the 705.
    Hey Nate,
    Glad to see you doing well.
    I started my GPS experience with a 60CSx for route finding, then moved to a 305 when I needed a HRM, and about 6 months ago upgraded to a 705 when I got a deal too good to refuse.

    First, I have the Garmin 100k topo on both 60CSx and 705, and I was skeptical about mapping and route finding compared to the 60CSx, and both went on my bars on rides where I was looking for hidden old mining roads in the dense chaparral of central CA. I went out using the 705 primarily to see how it does, with the 60 as backup. I had some waypoints set from TopoFusion using aerial maps to see the old roadbeds.

    I was amazed at how well the 705 works for navigation! Yes the screen is a little small, but it works for me zooming in to 120-200 feet. I have added the Ibycus city maps and the CA 20 foot topo from GPS File Depot, and they are even better, but I still have the Garmin 100k installed as well. I use the Ibycus for commutes and riding to the trail head, not needed, but nice to have. Interestingly, the free topo and Ibycus will work together just fine with the topo showing on the trails in the hills and road details in the towns in the valleys.

    Extra features are the SD card, the fact that you can lock the buttons on the 705, the longer battery life, and the fact that the 705 has the ability to rename the 3 different bike profiles, and set whether you want cadence with each. And it sits on top of the stem, out of the way.

    You will need the speed/cadence sensor on the trainer for now to get distance and speed readings. You could get by with the 305, but I would not go back to it now, the 705 just works too well, and I have not taken my 60CSx out for a couple months now, the 705 works fine for the route finding and navigation I need.
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  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by slocaus
    Hey Nate,
    Glad to see you doing well.
    I started my GPS experience with a 60CSx for route finding, then moved to a 305 when I needed a HRM, and about 6 months ago upgraded to a 705 when I got a deal too good to refuse.

    First, I have the Garmin 100k topo on both 60CSx and 705, and I was skeptical about mapping and route finding compared to the 60CSx, and both went on my bars on rides where I was looking for hidden old mining roads in the dense chaparral of central CA. I went out using the 705 primarily to see how it does, with the 60 as backup. I had some waypoints set from TopoFusion using aerial maps to see the old roadbeds.

    I was amazed at how well the 705 works for navigation! Yes the screen is a little small, but it works for me zooming in to 120-200 feet. I have added the Ibycus city maps and the CA 20 foot topo from GPS File Depot, and they are even better, but I still have the Garmin 100k installed as well. I use the Ibycus for commutes and riding to the trail head, not needed, but nice to have. Interestingly, the free topo and Ibycus will work together just fine with the topo showing on the trails in the hills and road details in the towns in the valleys.

    Extra features are the SD card, the fact that you can lock the buttons on the 705, the longer battery life, and the fact that the 705 has the ability to rename the 3 different bike profiles, and set whether you want cadence with each. And it sits on top of the stem, out of the way.

    You will need the speed/cadence sensor on the trainer for now to get distance and speed readings. You could get by with the 305, but I would not go back to it now, the 705 just works too well, and I have not taken my 60CSx out for a couple months now, the 705 works fine for the route finding and navigation I need.
    Thanks, this is the sort of user experience I was looking for. Glad to hear the 705 works well for navigation. I also have a Nuvi for the car, so I won't need street maps. I also like that the 705 has some nice, tangible updates over the 305. Nice I could use it on the trainer and get a little more feedback on my workout than I do with just my HRM. I don't have a bike computer anymore (old one broke a long time ago) so I've just been using my 76 as such. I fabricated a stem mount for it to improve how it carried, but it still sticks out a lot. I haven't had much trouble with it per se, but it still scares me, being so big and 'out there' on my stem, even. It'd still get used for hiking and paddling, but having a smaller unit on the bike would be nice. Looks like I'll eventually start shopping for a 705.

    Anyone get one of the 705 refurbs from Geoman? The price is right, but a bad experience with a refurb TV remote control has me a little wary.

  8. #8
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    I've used both and would never buy a 305 again. In addition to the unit shut off issue (which has eventually occurred with each of the 3 units my husband and I had, as well as for everyone we know that has had a 305), the 705 is just better. Larger screen, color screen, power capability (ant +), quicker satellite lock-on, less satellite drop out, etc.

    We have used the navigation tool a LOT while on bike trips to find sporting good stores, food, and just to generally navigate to/from our hotel and race venues. I've pre-plugged in addresses/phone numbers and it has never led us astray. Great even for finding a friend's house locally, or the closest Wahoo's/Chipotle

  9. #9
    trail rat
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    Quote Originally Posted by NateHawk
    Anyone get one of the 705 refurbs from Geoman? The price is right, but a bad experience with a refurb TV remote control has me a little wary.
    I spent over 16 years in the cell phone business, most of it as a tech. When over the counter exchanges of defects with refurbs started, the refurbs were better than the originals in terms of QC, since you knew a tech had been through it with a test set. Only about one in 100 got tested on the assembly lines.

    Now I do not know how thoroughly the Garmin refurbs are handled, but the potential is that they could be better. As far as GeoMan, I have made a number or purchases from him, and would not hesitate. He understands customer service and will take care of any problems.
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  10. #10
    My other ride is your mom
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    I can't stress how helpful it is to have topographic maps as a background when it comes to navigation...something the 705 does and the 305 does not. Depending on where you live, you can even pick up free and detailed topo maps online for uploading into the 705. If you bushwack or explore...705 is the way to go.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maadjurguer
    I can't stress how helpful it is to have topographic maps as a background when it comes to navigation...something the 705 does and the 305 does not. Depending on where you live, you can even pick up free and detailed topo maps online for uploading into the 705. If you bushwack or explore...705 is the way to go.
    Bushwhacking on a bike? Seems a bit unethical to me...you know, the whole riding only on legal mtb trails. A little exploring can be done, but can be limited in some places. Only one of my usual riding destinations offers the chance (and it's almost an hour away so I don't go often). Trust me, I know the feature differences of these two. I've read enough spec sheets. I'm just looking for real user experiences like slocaus's.

  12. #12
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    I had both, and the 705 is much nicer than the 305 was. That's completely aside from the 305 having the shut-off issue, which the 705 doesn't.

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