What cycling computer should I get?

Which cycling computer is better?

  • Wahoo ELEMNT Bolt

  • Garmin Edge 520 Plus

  • Other?


Results are only viewable after voting.

jordanbstopps

New Member
I've been cycling for about a year and have decided it is time to invest in a cycling computer rather than to keep mounting my phone to the bike. Given my budget i'm looking at the Wahoo ELEMNT Bolt (£185) or a Garmin Edge 520 Plus (£153). If anyone has any advice on which one is better or if there is a better alternative at a similar price it would be great to hear from you.
 

fossyant

Ride It Like You Stole It!
Location
South Manchester
Garmin Explore. It's slightly more expensive (approx £180 maximum), but has a bigger screen. If you don't need power meter and training plans on it, that's the one to get. The screen is very easy to see on the bike.
 

si_c

Veteran
Location
Wirral
+1 for what @fossyant said :okay: The 520 is a good unit, but it's starting to show it's age a little bit, the edge explore is a much faster unit and has a touchscreen too which is nice.
 

fossyant

Ride It Like You Stole It!
Location
South Manchester
+1 for what @fossyant said :okay: The 520 is a good unit, but it's starting to show it's age a little bit, the edge explore is a much faster unit and has a touchscreen too which is nice.
And the screen works with thick gloves on ! I was quite surprised as my gloves aren't 'touch screen' compatible ! I did get my Explore for £130 recently, so keep an eye out for deals.
 

ade towell

Well-Known Member
Location
Nottingham
Another for the explore I also got a good deal on it so worth looking around. Screen is big enough for my fading eyes and navigation is pretty good (unless you go off course when it seems to freak out a little). One other slight irritant is I couldn't seem to get it to navigate a course the opposite direction. Am I just being an idiot or is this simple task not possible?
 

si_c

Veteran
Location
Wirral
Another for the explore I also got a good deal on it so worth looking around. Screen is big enough for my fading eyes and navigation is pretty good (unless you go off course when it seems to freak out a little). One other slight irritant is I couldn't seem to get it to navigate a course the opposite direction. Am I just being an idiot or is this simple task not possible?
You can't do it directly - go to the Garmin Connect website -> Courses -> Edit the course -> Reverse the direction and save. You'll then have a second route in the reverse direction you can navigate. Not perfect, but it works.
 

ade towell

Well-Known Member
Location
Nottingham
I read about that and tried but some of the routes wouldn't load on the website version. They would load on the Garmin Connect app on my phone but I couldn't edit them there. These are routes that friends have done on Strava mainly or that I've found.
Is a little annoying as seems like such an easy thing to do in firmware and when I google it I am obviously not the only one who wishes it was possible. Was simple when using Osmand on my phone.
Sorry for going a little off topic here
 
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Ridgeway

Senior Member
Can only comment as follows on the Bolt i've been using for around 2yrs:

+super easy to set up and connect sensors with
+has been solid and reliable even in very wet conditions, now gets used on my MTB as well
+no touch screen and relies on simple buttons that are easy to use, never get confused with water droplets on the screen etc
+battery life is very good, probably 10hrs ish

-screen is small and only B&W
-less connectivity to Garmin Varia (doesn't show battery life)
-navigation is "OK" and useable but it certainly isn't great, i'm sure the larger Roam or a Garmin unit would be better if you intend to use that feature a lot
-lots of FW updates, good i suppose but can be annoying if it tries to download at an inconvenient time
-some sensor drop out issues from time to time

For me i like it's small and neat format, simple buttons and solid reliability
 

Joffey

Veteran
Location
Yorkshire
Edge 530

The 520's have lots of issues and are getting OLD. All issues now fixed in the 530.

If you can't stretch to the 530 then get a Wahoo.
 
I've got a garmin edge touring for sale @£50 if you want it.

Upgraded to the edge explore - mainly because they were available for £130 before xmas ! - picked up an injury so haven't been able to fully get to grips with it yet.
 
Can only comment as follows on the Bolt i've been using for around 2yrs:

+super easy to set up and connect sensors with
+has been solid and reliable even in very wet conditions, now gets used on my MTB as well
+no touch screen and relies on simple buttons that are easy to use, never get confused with water droplets on the screen etc
+battery life is very good, probably 10hrs ish

-screen is small and only B&W
-less connectivity to Garmin Varia (doesn't show battery life)
-navigation is "OK" and useable but it certainly isn't great, i'm sure the larger Roam or a Garmin unit would be better if you intend to use that feature a lot
-lots of FW updates, good i suppose but can be annoying if it tries to download at an inconvenient time
-some sensor drop out issues from time to time

For me i like it's small and neat format, simple buttons and solid reliability
I think that is a very fair review.

I have both the Elemnt and the Elemnt Bolt, and out of the two probably prefer the Bolt. Although the Elemnt has a larger screen and even more battery life (both are great), I find the buttons on the Bolt a lot more comfortable on the finger and easier to use.

It’s also worth mentioning that the display, although only black and white, is extremely easy to read - even in bright sunlight.

I would say that the navigation on the Bolt is pretty good for such a small device, but not as easy to follow as some of the more expensive devices with larger, colour screens. I think if I was to do another LEJOG or longer European tour, I’d be seriously tempted to get the Roam.

The main reason I’d go for another Wahoo device is battery life and the fact that both mine have behaved impeccably over tens of thousands of miles.
 
No disrespect, but it's a bit like asking what car should I buy when we don't know where you drive, for how long etc.
There are differences between the units, some large, some small that may, or may not, be significant to you.

For these types of purchases I think it is always better to sit down and have a good think about what you want the unit to do. (Not a bad idea to think about what you might like the unit to do in the future too!)
You'll probably end up with a list of necessities, nice to haves and really not importants.

Other than the unit it's also probably worth thinking about customer service, integration with other devices/software/apps, updates etc.

There's not a whole load of use in me telling you what I use because we probably don't do the same type of cycling.

Sorry^_^
 
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