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Old 06-10-15, 09:20 PM   #1
2gether84
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ANT+ bike computers

I recently added a Garmin Edge 810 to my tandem. I'm using the GSC10 speed and cadence sensor. I would like to add a non GPS bike computer so my stoker can see our speed and RPMs while I have the Garmin up front. What bike computers work with ANT+? So far I have only found the Cateye Stealth 50 and the Bontrager Node 2. Any other units out there that will work with ANT+ to give me speed and RPMs? Thanks for your help.
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Old 06-10-15, 09:26 PM   #2
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my guess is that Ant+ is going to involve a full-featured speedometer. My phone talks to ant+
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Old 06-11-15, 05:00 AM   #3
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Garmin 500, Garmin Forerunner 15 watch, Timex Ironman Global Trainer watch, Lezyne Super GPS, et al.

Wahoo Fitness RFLKT+ ?
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Old 06-13-15, 07:23 PM   #4
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Garmin 500, Garmin Forerunner 15 watch, Timex Ironman Global Trainer watch, Lezyne Super GPS, et al.

Wahoo Fitness RFLKT+ ?
Yes. I use Garmin sensors with my iPhone (BT) and the RFLKT+ bridge. Works well.

J.
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Old 06-14-15, 05:39 AM   #5
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Bontrager Node computers are ANT+. Bontrager: node
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Old 06-14-15, 05:29 PM   #6
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Bontrager Node computers are ANT+. Bontrager: node
Probably the best bet. Maybe post on your local cycling facebook pages or craigslist to see if anyone upgraded to a GPS unit and has their old head unit buried in a sock drawer. The Node display is mostly worthless by itself, sometimes I use mine to check my resting HR.
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Old 06-15-15, 12:29 PM   #7
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... The Node display is mostly worthless by itself, sometimes I use mine to check my resting HR.
In what way specifically? Though I don't own a Node, my impression is the X.1 versions are pretty good. They also have the small ANT+ Trip 300 computer which lists for $65 without sensors.
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Old 06-15-15, 02:22 PM   #8
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In what way specifically?
Uh, without sensors just tells time. What kind of resale value could you expect when someone would need to spend about $40 each for speed / cadence and $80 for a HR monitor.
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Old 06-16-15, 10:42 AM   #9
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If you use the newest sensors that work with both Bluetooth and ANT+, you can run two computers simultaneously. I have used the Wahoo sensors with success in doing just this. Run your 810 on the front handlebars and then run a smart phone or smartphone plus RFLKT+ on the rear bars and you will be able to have dual displays on your tandem.

The Speed and cadence sensor will get you both speed and cadence in both BT and ANT. The RPM will give you just cadence and will also do it in both protocols.

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Old 06-16-15, 11:02 AM   #10
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^ If they already have and paid for a cadence sensor that's able to transmit to multiple computers simultaneously (and they both want to see the same cadence sensor), why would they get rid of it and buy a new cadence sensor just because it can also transmit to two computers? Wahoo's speed and cadence sensor alone costs as much as a new computer that will use the sensors they already have installed on their bike. And then they have to buy a phone mount and pay for an app to use the Wahoo stuff. There's no point and it's needlessly expensive.
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Old 06-17-15, 10:04 AM   #11
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So far I have only found the Cateye Stealth 50 and the Bontrager Node 2.
The Cateye requires recharging every 10 h or so. The Node 1/2 and the Trip 300 use batteries that last for months.

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In what way specifically? Though I don't own a Node, my impression is the X.1 versions are pretty good. They also have the small ANT+ Trip 300 computer which lists for $65 without sensors.
The Nodes are pretty good. The speed display is larger than it needs to be and the secondary information display is a bit small.

The Node or the Trip 300 (the cheapest option) are reasonable. The batteries last a long time (avoiding the need to keep recharging it).

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Wahoo Fitness RFLKT+ ?
It has a good display (better than the Node) and doesn't need to be recharged. Though, I think it needs a phone to work (which seems over complicated for the OP's purpose).

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Old 06-17-15, 10:09 AM   #12
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^ If they already have and paid for a cadence sensor that's able to transmit to multiple computers simultaneously (and they both want to see the same cadence sensor), why would they get rid of it and buy a new cadence sensor just because it can also transmit to two computers? Wahoo's speed and cadence sensor alone costs as much as a new computer that will use the sensors they already have installed on their bike. And then they have to buy a phone mount and pay for an app to use the Wahoo stuff. There's no point and it's needlessly expensive.
Agree. I just wanted to get rid of the magnet based sensors, so that's why I got rid of them. The alignment issue is a mess for me when I switch wheels and if I'm not careful when transporting our bikes. So it's a convenience issue for me. The issue has been a pain for me for years and I'm glad there are sensors available that get away from the magnet/hall effect sensor alignment strategy.

The newest version of the Wahoo blue s/c speed and cadence sensor transmits simultaneously in ANT+ and BT LE. You can actually run a computer on each protocol simultaneously using a single sensor. Not that you'd want to, but both protocols are being transmitted simultaneously real time.

J.
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Old 06-17-15, 10:15 AM   #13
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Agree. I just wanted to get rid of the magnet based sensors, so that's why I got rid of them
The only Wahoo sensor that doesn't use magnets is the cadence-only sensor.

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The newest version of the Wahoo blue s/c speed and cadence sensor transmits simultaneously in ANT+ and BT LE. You can actually run a computer on each protocol simultaneously using a single sensor. Not that you'd want to, but both protocols are being transmitted simultaneously real time.
If people need/want to buy a sensor, they should look closely at the ANT+/BT ones!

The plastic case for the Wahoo speed/cadence sensor is the same as the same as the Bontrager sensor. I suspect they are manufactured by one company. (I've had good luck with the Bontrager sensor.)

It's easier to have the units transmit both at the same time (fewer buttons/configuring issues for a sensor/transmitter that is supposed to be a simple to use as possible). The only downside is (possibly) shorter battery life.

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Old 06-17-15, 10:31 AM   #14
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The only Wahoo sensor that doesn't use magnets is the cadence-only sensor.


If people need/want to buy a sensor, they should look closely at the ANT+/BT ones!

The plastic case for the Wahoo speed/cadence sensor is the same as the same as the Bontrager sensor. I suspect they are manufactured by one company. (I've had good luck with the Bontrager sensor.)

It's easier to have the units transmit both at the same time (fewer buttons/configuring issues for a sensor/transmitter that is supposed to be a simple to use as possible). The only downside is (possibly) shorter battery life.
Agree. I don't think there is an issue with battery life. But for sure, it's a lot more flexible to be able to have a sensor that works with any available standard. That said, check first with the mfg about the standard and the computer you have. There can be issues with rev levels etc...

I know that Wahoo is using the Nordic Semiconductor part. It's configurable and while it has the hardware including antennas to transmit, how it does that and to precisely what standard is going to be part of the software that each particular company loads the sensor with. I know the Nordic part is configurable over wireless for software upgrades and can be done via a utility from the android or apple app store.

J.
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Old 06-17-15, 10:37 AM   #15
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Agree. I don't think there is an issue with battery life.
It probably makes it shorter but maybe not by much. Even if it was significant, you'd have to be be paying close attention to notice it. It might be more of an issue for people that ride a lot or are concerned about creating more trash.

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But for sure, it's a lot more flexible to be able to have a sensor that works with any available standard.
For sure!

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That said, check first with the mfg about the standard and the computer you have. There can be issues with rev levels etc...
The ANT+ probably won't be a problem. There are lots of Garmin units around and an ANT+ sensor that doesn't work with them would be a mess. The BTLE probably works fine with iPhones. Android phones are less well controlled. So, there might be more problems there.

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I know that Wahoo is using the Nordic Semiconductor part. It's configurable and while it has the hardware including antennas to transmit, how it does that and to precisely what standard is going to be part of the software that each particular company loads the sensor with. I know the Nordic part is configurable over wireless for software upgrades and can be done via a utility from the android or apple app store.
Interesting. I would have thought that the chip manufacturer would provide the microcode too (the chip is proprietary, presumably) and it would likely be cheaper than having each integrator to do the work.

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Old 06-18-15, 05:03 AM   #16
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...It probably works find with iPhones. Android phones are less well controlled. So, there might be more problems there...
FWIW: iPhones do not receive ANT+, but many Android phones do.
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Old 06-18-15, 11:28 AM   #17
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Thanks everyone for your replies. I think the Trip 300 might be just what I'm looking for. Thanks again!
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Old 06-18-15, 11:39 AM   #18
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FWIW: iPhones do not receive ANT+, but many Android phones do.
I was talking about BTLE support on the iPhones (which where basically the first to have it).

Though, only a few Android phones support ANT+. (It seems that a few Android phones have ANT+ support turned-off but can be "hacked" to turn it on.)

Smartphones have to support BT. They don't have to support ANT+.

There's a licensing fee to use ANT+. I believe it applies to recievers (but it might only apply to transmitters).

BT is much more universal. Many more things use it and it's used for many more different things. (If there's a licensing fee associated with BT, it's irrelevant because phones have to support it.)

ANT+ is much more of a niche thing. I'd expect that support for it is going to be more hit-or-miss.

As far as I understand, it's easy to support BTLE (smart) and ANT+ on the same chip. The reason not to support ANT+ is extra cost to service a small market.

As far as I understand, ANT+ isn't better than BTLE (the design of BTLE was "informed" by ANT+).

It might make sense phase-out ANT+ and use BTLE but you'd need Garmin's cooperation for that (think "snowballs in hell").

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Old 06-18-15, 02:46 PM   #19
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I was talking about BTLE support on the iPhones (which where basically the first to have it).

Though, only a few Android phones support ANT+. (It seems that a few Android phones have ANT+ support turned-off but can be "hacked" to turn it on.)

Smartphones have to support BT. They don't have to support ANT+.

There's a licensing fee to use ANT+. I believe it applies to recievers (but it might only apply to transmitters).

BT is much more universal. Many more things use it and it's used for many more different things. (If there's a licensing fee associated with BT, it's irrelevant because phones have to support it.)

ANT+ is much more of a niche thing. I'd expect that support for it is going to be more hit-or-miss.

As far as I understand, it's easy to support BTLE (smart) and ANT+ on the same chip. The reason not to support ANT+ is extra cost to service a small market.

As far as I understand, ANT+ isn't better than BTLE (the design of BTLE was "informed" by ANT+).

It might make sense phase-out ANT+ and use BTLE but you'd need Garmin's cooperation for that (think "snowballs in hell").
I think Garmin was one of the companies behind the ANT+ standard. I doubt they will change until everyone else changes.

I feel like the future of these will be low power Bluetooth (BTLE) but it's not quite there yet in the bike sensor world. You can see the handwriting on the wall with the chips coming out that support BTLE and ANT+ simultaneously. Once the BTLE stuff is out there, it opens up the app world on the smartphones in a very big way.

That said, I don't think there is an exclusive pairing process in ANT+ like BT. So any ANT+ capable head should be able to read the existing ANT+ sensor as long as it's been trained to look for that sensor.

J.
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Old 06-18-15, 03:19 PM   #20
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I think Garmin was one of the companies behind the ANT+ standard. I doubt they will change until everyone else changes.
They are the primary company behind ANT+. Other companies supported it to be able to work with the Garmin stuff. When it was introduced, there wasn't any (reasonable) alternative. I think there was some idea that ANT+ would be used more generally but that never happened. Then, BTLE happened. And that's less tied to a particular company.

Garmin has a strong reason to not go with BTLE. They make more money on head units than sensors. Selling or supporting BTLE sensors means that people might choose to use their smartphones over buying a Garmin head unit.

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I feel like the future of these will be low power Bluetooth (BTLE) but it's not quite there yet in the bike sensor world.
It's not there in the bike sensor world because people want their sensors to work with their Garmin head units.

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You can see the handwriting on the wall with the chips coming out that support BTLE and ANT+ simultaneously. Once the BTLE stuff is out there, it opens up the app world on the smartphones in a very big way.
BTLE is cheaper for smartphones and they have to support it anyway (they don't have to support ANT+ because it costs extra and it's a small market).

The only way a company like Wahoo can really access the smartphone market is through BTLE. Supporting ANT+ gives them access to the Garmin market too. Their smartphone market is small enough that it's worth for them to pay the extra ANT+ licensing to gain access to the Garmin market. A Garmin head-unit owner wouldn't likely consider the Wahoo sensor unless it also supporte ANT+.

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That said, I don't think there is an exclusive pairing process in ANT+ like BT. So any ANT+ capable head should be able to read the existing ANT+ sensor as long as it's been trained to look for that sensor.
Yes, there is no exclusive pairing with ANT+. ANT+ data can be received by any number of head units. That's actually a good/useful feature.

There isn't any reason BTLE can't work the same way (I think it might be an option). Hopefully, one isn't stuck with it being an exclusive pairing.

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Old 06-24-15, 11:30 AM   #21
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Directory - THIS IS ANT
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