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Old 07-23-07, 07:34 AM   #1
Johannes
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i love my garmin, but ...

isn't it time garmin, or any other manufacturer, bring these bike units up to date? i understand the outdoor/fitness market is small in comparison to automotive GPS units. i also understand that there are needs for miniaturization and there is only a very limited amount of battery power available. but still!

here is what i want:

-color display
-modern battery technology
-the GPS should tell me where i am instead of where i was when i arrive at home
-interactivity with other components (like in flightdeck by shimano) optional
-map options via memory card
-more way points
-expandable memory
-better host software (ascent is so much cooler than training center)
-user replaceable battery

please let me know in case i missed a product that is out there already.

j
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Old 07-23-07, 11:38 AM   #2
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-user replaceable battery
Thats a good point how does the garmin edge 305 stand up with the battery, should I let it go completely dead before recharging so spot charging doesnt ruin the battery?
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Old 07-23-07, 11:52 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by Johannes View Post
isn't it time garmin, or any other manufacturer, bring these bike units up to date? i understand the outdoor/fitness market is small in comparison to automotive GPS units. i also understand that there are needs for miniaturization and there is only a very limited amount of battery power available. but still!

here is what i want:

-color display
-modern battery technology
-the GPS should tell me where i am instead of where i was when i arrive at home
-interactivity with other components (like in flightdeck by shimano) optional
-map options via memory card
-more way points
-expandable memory
-better host software (ascent is so much cooler than training center)
-user replaceable battery

please let me know in case i missed a product that is out there already.

j
Garmin eTrex Legend Cx offers you:

-color display
-the GPS tells you where i are
-map options via memory card
-more way points (plus set your own routes)
-expandable memory
-user replaceable battery

Coupling it with SportTracks (a free software), you also get:
* Complete route information including:
- location (and in the beta sporttracks, google earth satellite images)
- speed info, elevation/gradient, etc
* Ability to couple it with HR info from your HR monitor
* Ability to compare and average all your rides recorded in your eTrex for almost any datapoint you want

It's seriously the most cost effective solution out there right now.
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Old 07-24-07, 04:48 AM   #4
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i will check it out. thanks for the pointer. i like to ride long distances and bike maps for our region seem hard to come by. except for NYC itself which has free excellent maps. if your suggestion works i can leave the printouts from google earth at home finally. thanks!

the garmins are nice for a workout log. yes, the batteries seem to have memory and degrade rapidly in my experience. i refuse to think about it. i use the garmin at least 5 times a week and it goes back on a USB cable when i come home and stays there. not the best solution for the battery, but it doesn't get lost when kept on the USB-leash :-).

j
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Old 07-24-07, 04:57 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by donrhummy View Post
Garmin eTrex Legend Cx offers you:

-color display
-the GPS tells you where i are
-map options via memory card
-more way points (plus set your own routes)
-expandable memory
-user replaceable battery

Coupling it with SportTracks (a free software), you also get:
* Complete route information including:
- location (and in the beta sporttracks, google earth satellite images)
- speed info, elevation/gradient, etc
* Ability to couple it with HR info from your HR monitor
* Ability to compare and average all your rides recorded in your eTrex for almost any datapoint you want

It's seriously the most cost effective solution out there right now.
+1 I just can't believe people would rather ride with the 305 than the Etrex Legend CX. I want a moving map when I ride.
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Old 07-24-07, 08:07 AM   #6
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hi gear,
i hear you loud and clearly and i too am ready move up to something with a color map. how are the etrex in terms of water proofing? how does it compare to offerings from other companies like this one:

delorme np 20

how do the different map packages compare? is there a software that features bike lanes/routes?

another comparison is size of course. which is the smallest/lightest of these units?

the garmins are not navigation units. they are more log-keepers for your workouts. i go the same way from brooklyn to central park 5 times a week. i will find my way without a map by now. the garmins take excellent track of lap times, miles, calories, and the like. it is a different species of products.
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Old 07-24-07, 08:55 AM   #7
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hi gear,
i hear you loud and clearly and i too am ready move up to something with a color map. how are the etrex in terms of water proofing? how does it compare to offerings from other companies like this one:

delorme np 20

how do the different map packages compare? is there a software that features bike lanes/routes?

another comparison is size of course. which is the smallest/lightest of these units?

the garmins are not navigation units. they are more log-keepers for your workouts. i go the same way from brooklyn to central park 5 times a week. i will find my way without a map by now. the garmins take excellent track of lap times, miles, calories, and the like. it is a different species of products.
A few things:

1. The eTrex is water proof (at least the eTrex Legend Cx) and I've ridden with it in the rain, no problem
2. The eTrex is a Garmin (just mentioning it since you said "garmins are not navigation units" and the eTrex is definitely a navigational unit)

I've been really happy with the eTrex and the navigation it provides. The only thing I'd change is to turn the volume higher (which apparently you can't do, I'm looking for a hack that would allow it). The alerts to notify you a turn is coming up can sometimes be hard to hear when cars are going by, but the screen also changes to show the turn coming up and it notifes you twice.

Coupled with the free software of SportTracks, it's a fantastic option.
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Old 07-24-07, 09:24 AM   #8
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you are totally correct. i refer to my garmin 305 as "the garmin". i am aware that garmin makes full featured navigation devices. my wrong. i'm glad to hear about the reliability of the etrex in the rain.

you say that the etrex talks to you? wow! that is a feature i wasn't even thinking about. i saw this feature used only once. my office in manhattan is over a bar and on the way home i saw a drunk guy using a handheld device telling him how to make it home. it wasn't easy since he was on his knees already and had only 3 points of contact with the ground while holding up the GPS device.
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Old 07-24-07, 09:50 AM   #9
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I've used my etrex in a downpour (I wish I didn't have to but thats' biking) so I know it is at least very water resistant. I've used it in combination with Garmin's mapsource maps and maps by Terain Navagator. I like to save tracks of on and off road rides I've made and sometimes reload them to do them again. I've used it in Europe and traveling in N.A. I've used it walking and in my car. I have mounts on all my bikes' handlebars. The best thing to me is to explore places I've never been and use the GPS moving map to get me back to familiar turf after getting real lost. Its' a small unit but I can read the screen (while biking or driving) without my reading glasses.
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Old 07-24-07, 12:47 PM   #10
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+1 I just can't believe people would rather ride with the 305 than the Etrex Legend CX. I want a moving map when I ride.
isn't cause of all the nice statistics the 305 can tell the user when riding their bikes? (I only assume since I do not own one).
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Old 07-24-07, 07:06 PM   #11
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+1 I just can't believe people would rather ride with the 305 than the Etrex Legend CX. I want a moving map when I ride.
I dont need my garmin for navigating. I'm not lost, i know where im going, and where ive been. What I did buy it for was keeping track of my rides, replacing my cyclo computer and my heartrate monitor, and for training when i'm alone.

Now getting home from a group ride, commute, or training ride I can just plug it in, and my fitness log is updated with all the crap I used to be too lazy to type in

Now if they can come out with a combined version, without getting bigger, im all over it.
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Old 07-24-07, 08:05 PM   #12
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I use a Garmin GPSMAP 60 for ride info (cyclocomputer functions), map display, and geocaching on the bike. The Garmin bike mount for these units is great, and the GPSMAP 60 goes 20+ hours on a set of batteries. Mine does not have removable map storage, but it does have 24 MB of internal memory for maps. The reason I got the GPSMAP 60 over a Legend is that the GPSMAP 60 is more rugged, has a larger screen, a better antenna, and better battery life. I don't have a color screen, but I really don't understand the need for one. There's definitely a unit out there for everyone's needs.

Ken
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Old 07-25-07, 07:05 AM   #13
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you are totally correct. i refer to my garmin 305 as "the garmin". i am aware that garmin makes full featured navigation devices. my wrong. i'm glad to hear about the reliability of the etrex in the rain.

you say that the etrex talks to you?
wow! that is a feature i wasn't even thinking about. i saw this feature used only once. my office in manhattan is over a bar and on the way home i saw a drunk guy using a handheld device telling him how to make it home. it wasn't easy since he was on his knees already and had only 3 points of contact with the ground while holding up the GPS device.
Sort of. It doesn't have a voice but alert beeps. It's got diff. beeps to warn you a turn is coming up and then again when it's time to turn and for other things (waypoints, etc). So it lets you know but with sounds, not voice.
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Old 07-25-07, 07:49 AM   #14
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I have an eTrex Legend (not Cx so no color) and over the years it has been subjected to serious salt spray while boating to dive sites, submerged during an incident with a canoe, splashed while kayaking and survived a major endo on my MTB. It still gets me to where I'm going just fine.
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Old 07-25-07, 04:07 PM   #15
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I never got used to having something as big as a Etrex on the handlebars. I usually just throw it in my pack on "record track" function and DL the data when I get home.

I have a standard little cateye on the bars and only take out the Garmin if I get lost.
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Old 07-25-07, 05:36 PM   #16
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A few things:

1. The eTrex is water proof (at least the eTrex Legend Cx) and I've ridden with it in the rain, no problem
2. The eTrex is a Garmin (just mentioning it since you said "garmins are not navigation units" and the eTrex is definitely a navigational unit)

I've been really happy with the eTrex and the navigation it provides. The only thing I'd change is to turn the volume higher (which apparently you can't do, I'm looking for a hack that would allow it). The alerts to notify you a turn is coming up can sometimes be hard to hear when cars are going by, but the screen also changes to show the turn coming up and it notifes you twice.

Coupled with the free software of SportTracks, it's a fantastic option.
While talking with some folks at the local Walmart as they're looking at GPS's they told me that Garmin did not cover repairs for thier Etrex Legend (black & white) or any models if the unit is subjected to salt water. Just a FYI I thought I'd throw out. WhileI'm sure mostof you are all in North America so I don't think salt water is too much of an issue unless you dropped it into a saltwater aquarium.
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Old 07-25-07, 05:42 PM   #17
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While talking with some folks at the local Walmart as they're looking at GPS's they told me that Garmin did not cover repairs for thier Etrex Legend (black & white) or any models if the unit is subjected to salt water. Just a FYI I thought I'd throw out. WhileI'm sure mostof you are all in North America so I don't think salt water is too much of an issue unless you dropped it into a saltwater aquarium.
Why were you at a Walmart? You support them?
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Old 07-25-07, 05:46 PM   #18
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While I love the Etrex for it's size but from what I've read it's not vibration protected for biking. Something I've read on the board and other forums about the circuit board or some electronics inside the unit coming loose and the unit is FUBAR'ed then.

Also another issue I have with the Etrex is they have /NOT/ gotten the SiRF technology into the units. Sure if you're out in the open then you'll be fine without issues but when you're under cover in the trailpaths and offroad under the trees you lose the signal quite a lot. Anyone that has been there knows what I'm talking about. If you're geocaching as well the signal fades in/out as you're under cover and takes about a minute to a few mins to re-lock on your position. I've had routes where it looked like the Family Circus where Billy is walking around the place with dots and break ups all over the place when I checked my traceroute.

Come on Garmin, it's been like 2yrs I think since SiRF has been out on your CS60 models (if I got the model number right) why can't you put that on your Etrex models? I'm sure the hunters have complained as well as other riders.

Otherwise I love the size and use of the unit.
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Old 07-25-07, 05:50 PM   #19
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Why were you at a Walmart? You support them?
I stopped by to check out some stuff while passing by and I find I don't get pressured into buying stuff while there then like other stores just for looking and trying out the products. What are you the spending police?
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Old 07-25-07, 11:01 PM   #20
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A few things:

1. The eTrex is water proof (at least the eTrex Legend Cx) and I've ridden with it in the rain, no problem
2. The eTrex is a Garmin (just mentioning it since you said "garmins are not navigation units" and the eTrex is definitely a navigational unit)

I've been really happy with the eTrex and the navigation it provides. The only thing I'd change is to turn the volume higher (which apparently you can't do, I'm looking for a hack that would allow it). The alerts to notify you a turn is coming up can sometimes be hard to hear when cars are going by, but the screen also changes to show the turn coming up and it notifes you twice.

Coupled with the free software of SportTracks, it's a fantastic option.
I have a 305 just for cadence and HR pretty much, but if I was going to do it again, I would have gotten the eTrex and a cheaper regular HRM/cadence computer. The real shame is that they should just make a bicycle kit for the eTrex instead of having the separate system...
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Old 07-26-07, 06:31 PM   #21
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from what I've read it's not vibration protected for biking. Something I've read on the board and other forums about the circuit board or some electronics inside the unit coming loose and the unit is FUBAR'ed then.
My Etrex has been through several crashes - the handlebar mount kept it securely in place on the bike, and, although the bike and everything on it (including me) was subjected to quite a shock in each of these crashes, it continues to work without complaint.

Caruso
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Old 07-27-07, 12:51 AM   #22
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Old 07-27-07, 08:55 AM   #23
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eTrex Legend Users:

I am considering the Garmin 305 versus the eTrex Legend. Can you answer the following for me?

1) Does the eTrex Legend require a subscription to a GPS service, or do you just simply turn on the unit?
2) How big is the unit? Does it fit on a bike handlebar? Are there bike mounting brackets included or available?
3) Is there as way with the eTrex Legend to save past routes? or upload your stats (speed, distance, routes) to another software program?
4) If i have a separate cadence/HRM, is there any reason why I would want the 305 model.

Sorry about all of the questions. I just don't have a lot of experience with either model.

Thanks!
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Old 07-27-07, 09:19 AM   #24
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1- Etrex doesn't require any subscriptions. GPS is free.
2- It's about the size of a candybar phone. You can see the specs at Garmin's website
3- etrex and 98% of all gps units can save routes you create via waypoints at minimum. You can upload to the best program available which is free and requires no subscription unlike many web-based solutions. sporttracks from www.zonefivesoftware.com
4- don't know, I use the 305 forerunner not 305 edge
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Old 07-27-07, 09:41 AM   #25
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I had an older Garmin GPS V, not the eTrex, but have used it mounted on my bike. It has maps for my local area, and does track my route with speed. For this GPS, I had to use another program to get my data into a compatible file, which I could then import into SportTracks. Once there, I can see the route I took along with speed. I also had a heart rate monitor, but it could not download data to the PC.

I recently bought the Garmin Edge 305. The Edge puts everything all in one small unit: route followed, speed, elevation, cadence, and heart rate. Now it's just really simple to load the data into the PC. I had stopped using the previous GPS simply because it required too much effort after each ride. The Edge downloads the data AND recharges the battery when I plug it in to capture the data.

Of course if I ever bike somewhere that I've never been and think I might get lost, I'll either have a map or the old GPS with me. ;-)
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