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Old 06-12-07, 12:45 AM   #1
cycle life
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wireless vs wired

Im interested in getting a bike computer and am looking at both wired and wireless. Sure the wireless is neater and more expensive, but is that the only draw back? Is there any lack of signal response or lack of sensor accuracy? I assume the wired system would be more accurate because of the direct connection but does the wireless have room for error?
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Old 06-12-07, 02:44 AM   #2
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I have not noticed any loss of accuracy after switching to wireless. It does stop receiving a signal when near some strong electromagnetic fields, though (still, no trouble with power lines or such - the places where mine blanks out do not have any visible sources of interference). I hear some wireless computers can correct for this, though, and fill in the gap using your average speed, which should be accurate enough.
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Old 06-12-07, 02:54 AM   #3
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Cold weather can be an issue, because of all the batteries. You can always take the computer with you and keep it in your pocket, but the rest of the wireless setup stays out with the bike. If it's really cold, it'll kill the batteries in no time. This was one of the reasons why I went back to wired.

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Old 06-12-07, 12:46 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SOS
I have not noticed any loss of accuracy after switching to wireless. It does stop receiving a signal when near some strong electromagnetic fields, though (still, no trouble with power lines or such - the places where mine blanks out do not have any visible sources of interference). I hear some wireless computers can correct for this, though, and fill in the gap using your average speed, which should be accurate enough.
+1
I have had zero issues with my $20 "ascent" brand wireless computers, on 2 bikes. No issues with LED light interference either.
cheers
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Old 06-12-07, 04:44 PM   #5
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I own 3 wired units, no wireless, the wired units work so good I don't have need for wireless, unless they are cheaper.
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Old 06-12-07, 10:03 PM   #6
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I have a CatEye wireless and the equivalent wired model. Both bottom of the line CatEyes. The wireless annoys me by showing impossible maximum speeds.

Also, don't get the CatEye Velos because they don't have average speed. I don't know why I overlooked this when searching for an inexpensive and reliable cyclocomputer.

I like both computers beyond the wireless interference I have received. I bought a third cyclocomputer and it's wired. I'm not sure I will go back to wireless.

Steve
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Old 06-13-07, 12:44 AM   #7
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I've been thinking about getting one, too, so I asked my bike mechanic about them. He claims the wireless ones go through a lot more batteries. Is that true?
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Old 06-13-07, 01:13 AM   #8
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I've been thinking about getting one, too, so I asked my bike mechanic about them. He claims the wireless ones go through a lot more batteries. Is that true?
The wireless ones have more batteries, so in that sense yes. In addition to the battery in your computer, there's a battery down in the magnet sensor, where the signal is sent. Some manufacturers add yet another battery in the computer handlebar mount, where the signal is received.

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Old 06-13-07, 01:25 AM   #9
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How often do you find you have to change them?
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Old 06-13-07, 08:25 AM   #10
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I've had greater reliability with the wireless. Wired systems suck in the rain when the contacts get wet and short out (cough, last week's 300k, cough).
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Old 06-13-07, 10:56 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ekdog
How often do you find you have to change them?
When I was still using wireless, keeping the bike out one night in -10 to -20C pretty much killed the batteries. Bringing them inside for a while before next ride revived them somewhat, but after a couple of nights nothing really helped. Wired LCD screen goes blank too after some time in such temperatures, but it logs the information nevertheless. Wireless was utterly and completely dead.

The storage room I have for bikes is a bit warmer, say above 0C at all times, so that was way better. But there's no way to stop the batteries being exposed to cold when riding, so it became too much of a hassle in any case.

I only had the wireless setup for one summer, and during that time I never had to change batteries. Problems started with winter.

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Old 06-14-07, 01:47 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cycle life
Im interested in getting a bike computer and am looking at both wired and wireless. Sure the wireless is neater and more expensive, but is that the only draw back? Is there any lack of signal response or lack of sensor accuracy? I assume the wired system would be more accurate because of the direct connection but does the wireless have room for error?
I bought a wireless and it has limitations that the sensor is not to exceed 24" away from the main unit. I lost interest on that one and instead bought a wired unit which I find to be more accurate and worry free.
On wireless, you can get interferance and may not transmit signals now and then. I'll go with the wired computer again for my next bike.
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Old 06-14-07, 01:52 PM   #13
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So whats a good WIRED computer for under $50? and one that bolts onto the stem?
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Old 06-14-07, 07:51 PM   #14
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Which wireless computer has reasonable distance for a stoker position on a tandem? I bought a cateye unit and it's only good for 70cm and that's unobstructed. I don't want to run a wire the whole way to the back wheel. I need a solid meter or so and it should pass through my wife...

Sheldon
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Old 06-14-07, 08:30 PM   #15
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also what is a good source for purchasing a good computer
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Old 06-15-07, 01:26 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stokessd
Which wireless computer has reasonable distance for a stoker position on a tandem? I bought a cateye unit and it's only good for 70cm and that's unobstructed. I don't want to run a wire the whole way to the back wheel. I need a solid meter or so and it should pass through my wife...

Sheldon
Maybe GPS? Or a Suunto HRM wristwatch. They have the BikePod transmitter for some of their HRM models that they claim has a transmission range of "max 10 meters". See http://www.suunto.fi for details.

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Old 06-15-07, 01:36 AM   #17
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Smile

Do you happen to know if they have a web page in English? My Finnish is a little rusty.
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Old 06-15-07, 07:31 AM   #18
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Sorry about that, posted the local site, they have an all-English global site as well.

It seems at least their models t3, t4 and t6 can be fitted with the BikePod option.

[edit] still wrong, grr. URL fixed now. [/edit]
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Old 06-16-07, 01:50 AM   #19
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So whats a good WIRED computer for under $50? and one that bolts onto the stem?
There are many threads on which computers people prefer. A search should turn up many options for you.
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Old 06-18-07, 02:16 PM   #20
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Try looking at the VDO computers. The C3 DS claim and I believe from experience to transmit about 2 meters. They also don't experience a lot of the interference that others do.

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Old 06-18-07, 04:52 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by cycle life
So whats a good WIRED computer for under $50? and one that bolts onto the stem?
I got the Specialized Turbo Sport, $30 +$6 for the stem mount.
Does max, av speed, odometer, trip meter and timer.
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Old 06-18-07, 06:36 PM   #22
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If you are a weight weenie, the batteries add grams. I have two wireless and both drive me crazy because they don't automatically start up when the wheel starts turning. I've been told that some do. Mine are newer models and were not real cheap. It maybe something to do with battery loss of always checking for a wireless signal.
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Old 06-19-07, 01:04 PM   #23
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So whats a good WIRED computer for under $50? and one that bolts onto the stem?
Cateye Strada.
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