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  1. #1
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    Why bother with an Edge, anyway?

    I was looking for a new gps to replace my aging edge 305. I thought about the 705 and got to wondering, why an Edge? The Garmin Nuvi line looks pretty good on paper. The Nuvi 200 is available for something like $130 at Target and it looks like it comes w/ complete maps and a better display than the 705.

    So, if you are willing to do without the bike computer features like cadence, and heart rate - why pay 5x more for an Edge 705?

    Not trying to be difficult. I know precious nothing about this stuff. I know that I've enjoyed my 305 but it looks like technology has come a long way since then. Are there issues w/ the Nuvi or other inexpensive gps units that I don't know about?

  2. #2
    "Mr. Britannica"
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    true... but battery life and mounting are issues w/ nuvis. now if you had an etrex and could do w/o all that stuff...

  3. #3
    PCC
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    The Edge has its place. I bought my 305 because I wanted to log my rides as well as having the normal cycling computer functions (speed, distance, grade %, heart rate, time ridden) and it has been great, so far. One of the things I wanted it for was to have a way to backtrack if I'm on an unfamiliar trail and get lost. A compact GPS unit would work for this situation, too, but I would lose the bike computer functions that I like so much.

    If I need to replace it today I would probably get another 305 but the 705 would also be in consideration.

  4. #4
    Two Tired
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    What's the point?

    What is the point of trying to use a Nuvi 205 on a mountain bike ride? It looks like the main features of the Nuvi are the turn-by-turn directions and the ability to optionally connect to MSN Direct to "get you there on time and informed." I am not too clear how this applies to loop routes on singletrack trails.

    Almost all of my rides are loops, so I end up where I start. The Nuvi will quickly find that the shortest route to my destination is to not move at all. I would get a nice color display of this non-route, but it isn't too useful. The automotive GPS units also use a network of roads to do the routing, but these networks typically do not include trails, making the routing feature useless for off-road use.

    I think the ability to download the detailed track of my route and having the time, distance, speed, etc. is the point of the GPS for mountain biking. For the more competitive, things like cadence and heart rate are useful and having the detailed topo maps is useful for those exploring "off the beaten path". I don't think most of these features are available on automotive GPS units since drivers typically don't care about these issues.

    I suppose it depends on what you want to do with a GPS. Unless you really need better mapping, you might want to stick with the 305 for now.
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  5. #5
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    The whole point of a training GPS are the training features. The nuvi is a CAR gps. MAYBE you can get 2hrs out of the battery if you're lucky. It's awful big, and the touch screen is not made to be used efficiently on the bike. It may be that the touch screen would mash on your first wreck, too.

    Good luck mounting it to your bike, too. Doubt you've ever seen how it mounts, but it would not hold on a bouncy off road trail. I own one and it stays in the car. Works fine there.

    Also, it only offers route-finding over roads. You can set it to just look at the map, but that's all you can do. You can't even upload topos if you want...not even the free ones.

    If you want a gps minus training features, buy an etrex, a 60CSx, or a Delorme PN-20 or PN-40. Hell, as much as I criticize the iphone, it's even a better choice than a Nuvi.

  6. #6
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    Exactly!

    Quote Originally Posted by Cino
    I know precious nothing about this stuff. I know that I've enjoyed my 305 but it looks like technology has come a long way since then. Are there issues w/ the Nuvi or other inexpensive gps units that I don't know about?
    Not trying to be mean, but you do "know precious nothing about this stuff." I have both the 705 and a Nuvi, and they are designed for entirely different purposes. A Nuvi would not work on a mountain bike trail for a number of reasons, battery life alone would disqualify it. It also lacks many forest service roads and has absolutely no trails. The 705 is great on the trail, it has topo maps, and you can download and follow thousands of other people's rides. I got the 705 after someone left me alone in Sedona, and I had no idea where I was, or how to get back to my car.

  7. #7
    ronbo613
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    I use a Garmin eTrex Vista with a handlebar mount for one purpose; to know where I'm at and where I'm going. I have a bike computer I use all the time; the GPS is for trips into the unmarked boonies so I can find my way home. You can download routes and waypoints to mapping software; we use computer mapping information to plan new rides by transferring data from the map software to the GPS.
    Cadence on a mountain bike doesn't seem that much of a training tool unless you do the same route over and over. Heart rate? When I'm gasping for air, I figure I'm just about at my aerobic threshold.
    The cycling GPS units are petty expensive; you can get a killer hand held mapping GPS for less than $400 and you can use it in your car, boat, kayak, etc. as well.

  8. #8
    GeoMan
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    Sorry, MTBR updated three entries...
    Last edited by GEOMAN; 07-01-2009 at 04:47 PM.
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  9. #9
    GeoMan
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cino
    Are there issues w/ the Nuvi or other inexpensive gps units that I don't know about?
    Do you know about poor GPS signal reception due to a cheap chipset?
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  10. #10
    GeoMan
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cino
    Are there issues w/ the Nuvi or other inexpensive gps units that I don't know about?
    Do you know about poor GPS signal reception due to a cheap chipset?
    GeoMan
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  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by GEOMAN
    Do you know about poor GPS signal reception due to a cheap chipset?
    Nope, like I said, I don't know much about this stuff at all. I have just seen the dazzeling displays of the cheap GPS units @ Target and was wondering if that would be an option. Is there a significant difference in signal reception between the nuvi's and the Edge?

    I suppose maybe the Edge units might be a bit more water and shock resistant too?

    On the other hand, I was looking at a buddy's 705 today in the sunlight. With my sunglasses on I found the bike computer display very readable but I found the map display a bit difficult. I think my 305's map display is much easier to read if all you are doing is following a route. I could barely make out the course track on the 705's map.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cino
    Nope, like I said, I don't know much about this stuff at all. I have just seen the dazzeling displays of the cheap GPS units @ Target and was wondering if that would be an option. Is there a significant difference in signal reception between the nuvi's and the Edge?

    I suppose maybe the Edge units might be a bit more water and shock resistant too?

    On the other hand, I was looking at a buddy's 705 today in the sunlight. With my sunglasses on I found the bike computer display very readable but I found the map display a bit difficult. I think my 305's map display is much easier to read if all you are doing is following a route. I could barely make out the course track on the 705's map.
    I dunno how much of a chipset difference there is between Nuvis and others. But if you compare between a recent Garmin and a recent cheapo no-name GPS, you will notice a significant difference, especially in the trees. The primary function of ALL Edge receivers is as a training computer with the extra stats. You don't need those features, then look at a different model. Say you want a bigger screen for navigation purposes. In that case, you should look at a handheld receiver with a bigger screen. The Oregon, though pricey, has a good hold on the big screen market. The speed and cadence sensor are also compatible with more than just the Edge receivers, too. They will work with the Colorado or the Oregon, if you still think you want those, but place a larger screen as a higher priority. Maybe you'd rather have something super simple. Look at a Forerunner. Basic stats, no map, no mess. There are even more options. Sit down and look at the feature lists on Garmin's site. Decide what you want, what you need, and what you don't care about. Then the decision is easy. Just recognize that a cheap GPS is a cheap GPS. It will have shortcomings.

  13. #13
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    Nuvi unis are no waterproof. So any rain, puddle or even getting the dirt off may kill the unit.

    I have a Nuvi for my car and an Oregon 400t for my MTB - both are using the same maps but the Oregon has the 3D topo capabiliy the Nuvi does not have.

  14. #14
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    The Edge 705 isn't waterproof either.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Resist
    The Edge 705 isn't waterproof either.
    It's IPx7, like all other outdoor receivers, and moreso than your favorite ipod. It can handle rain and even a little immersion if you drop it in a creek.

    The nuvi gets a flat out "no" for water resistance from Garmin.

  16. #16
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    I already understood that the 705 is water resistant. I just wanted to make sure others here understand it is not "waterproof".

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Resist
    I already understood that the 705 is water resistant. I just wanted to make sure others here understand it is not "waterproof".
    You make it sound like the 705 has the same level of water protection as a Nuvi.

    What's waterproof? My IPx7 Garmin survived submerged in a river powered on for half an hour. A little water got in, but it worked fine.

    Is waterproof enough to survive a rainstorm? A few seconds in a creek? Half an hour in whitewater? Indefinitely? That's where the ratings come in. I think IPx7 is rated to be submerged for half an hour. There are higher and lower ratings. The Nuvi lacks a rating altogether. Most phones, cameras, and other gizmos also lack a rating.

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