Looking for advice on a bike computer

If its an entry level device your after then consider the Garmin 520. after two years yes the battery life suddenly reduced. Appears to have been the backlight coming on at 100%, think it may have been a firmware update screwing that up. It was very hard to notice in daylight, since I’m aware of this and ensure its always down to 0% in day time, I still get my 8-10 hours out of it per charge, which I believe is good for a two year old device, and the fact they still release firmware keeping it current, even with the odd mess up! I say entry level as there isn’t a lot of processor power and a lot of memory to load open street maps, but enough to do multiple day touring. I find it just works, connects to everything I’ve brought and has been reliable.

Another satisfied Wahoo user.
My Garmin went in the bin after countless crashes mid ride, taking me off course and refusing to talk to my laptop.
My ELEMNT doesn’t require a wired connection. I can send it routes easily and I enjoy the ability to customise it from an app rather than scrolling through a stupid amount of screens.
Try the original ELEMNT or Bolt. You won’t be disappointed

Interesting… I have the 5S Plus, and I’m trying to device on a bike computer. The main reason being, I’d like something with a decent sized screen (without being overly large) that doesn’t require me to look at my wrist.

I have the Garmin bike mount so I can mount the Fenix 5 to my handle bars, but the display is quite small. I was initially considering the 520 Plus, but it doesn’t seem like much of an upgrade (if at all?) to the Fenix 5S Plus.

Been on my garmin edge 500 for like five years and it has yet to fail me. Gives me power, hr, laps, and that’s honestly all I need.
Do not give a hoot about strava live segments or a map

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You know I don’t have the plus but my buddy does. That screen is useful for maps but I don’t think it’s as good as a 500 or 800 series Garmin for displaying numbers. My friend has whatever the newest 800 series is? 820? That he got after the 5 plus.

I MTB’d with my Fenix this week because I didn’t want to pack a bunch of stuff over the holidays. It was fine but I was riding trails I know and really only using to record the ride and hr. Hardly looked at it but I would only use it for something like that. The plus maybe better enough to make a difference, I don’t know.

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Does anyone using Garmin have mismatches between TSS/power reporting?

I’m really happy with my Elemnt with the exception that it overshoots the TSS, kJ, and the short max powers slightly and it triggers my OCD brain

just minor differences…

Recent climbing ride:
TSS
156 - TrainerRoad
157 - TrainingPeaks
158 - Garmin Connect

NP
209 - TrainerRoad
210 - TrainingPeaks
211 - Garmin Connect

TR Donner workout with +5 min cooldown:
TSS
78 - TrainerRoad
78 - TrainingPeaks
78 - Garmin Connect

NP
204 - TrainerRoad
205 - TrainingPeaks
205 - Garmin Connect

TSS
206 - TrainerRoad
205 - Training Peaks
215 - Elemnt App/Headunit

kJ
2252 - TrainerRoad
2252 - Training Peaks
2307 - Element App/Headunit

NP -
234 - TrainerRoad
233 - Training Peaks
239 - Element App/Headunit

30s Max -
822 - TrainerRoad
816 - TrainingPeaks
811 - Element App
865 - Elemnt Headunit

I’m not sure what would cause this.

No idea, I’ve only played around a little bit with the Wahoo head units. I bought my Edge 520 before Wahoo Elemnt was ready for prime-time (and Bolt didn’t exist). No real issues with my Edge 520, and since purchasing I picked up Varia radar and won’t leave the house without it.

One of the bigger TSS differences in recent memory from a ride 3 weeks ago:

TSS
215 - TrainerRoad
217 - Training Peaks
221 - Garmin Connect

kJ
1609 - TrainerRoad
1609 - Training Peaks
1635 - Garmin Connect

NP
228 - TrainerRoad
229 - Training Peaks
232 - Garmin Connect

30s on power-duration curve
511 - TrainerRoad
509 - TrainingPeaks
511 - Garmin Connect

The TSS difference was unusual, don’t recall seeing such a discrepancy in the past but its still less than what you are seeing.

I used a Garmin 520 from 2016-July 2018. It works great for intervals and general ride logging but the mapping and routing is nonexistent due to memory limitations. I changed to a 1030 in August and am very happy with it, I use it for Strava segments and workouts and appreciate the extra data fields gained by the larger screen size.

I did change from the out front mount to the mtb mount that places 3/4 of the unit above the stem as the out-front mount completely blocked the view of my front wheel.

I do hear people touting the Wahoo Bolt but I’m pretty happy in the Garmin ecosystem and find it hard to believe the Bolt would be PERFECT either.

I have a friend with the Karoo, and while it’s REALLY NEAT I do have doubts about the long-term viability and it doesn’t yet support the Varia radar that I refuse to ride without.

No regrets with the 1030.

With Edge 520 I haven’t had any mapping issues riding in NorCal and a little in Nevada, the “turn-by-turn routing” is basically the same as Wahoo because both require loading a route with embedded turn-by-turn. However the 520 does shape based routing, so a Strava route on 520 has basic turn-by-turn but nothing on Wahoo. Only time I’ve wanted re-routing was in areas without cell coverage, and that means both 520 and Wahoo are #fail

I load my own OpenStreet maps onto the 520, worst case I might need to load new maps when traveling outside the area. This is the biggest area I’ve loaded on the 520, for riding locally and central coast where daughter attends college:
Map%20area

Yes, its a bit of a hassle dealing with that, say if I visit a buddy in Bay Area and we ride to Half Moon Bay but I rarely travel outside the map areas. Battery life is generally not an issue, and is 6-8 hours when navigating which means I carry a small battery pack about 5-10 times a year (not an issue, as I might need it for radar and phone too).

The new Edge 520 plus has plenty of space for maps, and true routing engine with full turn-by-turn without a prepared route. I ride plenty of places without any cell coverage, so that takes Wahoo out of consideration (no re-routing without phone & cell coverage) in addition to my ‘never leave home without Varia radar’ stance on riding. Seriously thinking of upgrading to 520 Plus or 1030.

@stevemz I would guess that the likely cause of the differences in NP and TSS has to do with what each of the applications does with certain data.

As you know, Andrew Coggan’s algorithm for calculating NP is the 4th root of the rolling 30sec averages raised to the 4th power (simplified wording: see p.120 of Training and Racing . . . ). So when the applications run the algorithm, there are several pieces of data for which the software needs to make decisions that may be handled differently by the different apps (presuming they all implement the formula correctly), including start of file, end of file, pauses, and spikes. As TSS is derived from NP, then if NP is high, TSS will be as well (you can see this in your Element data).

The only app that is “certain” to be accurate is TrainingPeaks (and, of course, WKO4) as it was “certified” by Dr. Coggan to correctly implement his algorithm. So errors in TP results would come from bad data.

A more controlled way to compare the units would be to create a new .fit file (from an effort) that has no pauses or backpedaling; import it into WK04, identify the start and end of your effort (where the first and last recorded wattages are located), delete all data points in the .fit file prior to and after those points, and reimport the updated .fit file into the apps and see if the NP and TSS results are the same. [note: I have used this approach successfully to remove power spikes where I know, for example, I didn’t generate 2x pMax).

As for 30sec max and KJ there seem to be no standards, such as with NP and TSS, such that one app could be presumed to be better than the other.

As you can infer above, WK04, for me is the gold standard for all power-based data and use it (and TP Premium) for all cycling (and multi-sport) data analytics. For users new to power-based metrics or don’t have the time for a deep-dive understanding of what TP/WK04 provides, I think TR has done a great job at simplifying all of it and providing a subset that they feel is necessary to help users become faster cyclists. So even if the analytics aren’t perfectly accurate, it is likely that it is “close enough” and consistent from effort to effort.

I didn’t know you could see the TSS on Garmin Connect. I just looked on the app where is it. Is it only on the website?

Thanks @bbarrera. I don’t have a power meter yet. That explains it.

Bryton 530

I had no issues with my Lezyne Macro, my so uses a Bryton Rider 310. If you are looking for solid, budget conscious computer, I would highly recommend either.

Another vote for the Wahoo Elemnt Bolt. First computer after many years of riding and can’t see how I’d need more. Gives you all the power info you could want along with basic outdoor riding metrics and GPS.

The hardcore Strava and/or data nerds may want more but should suffice for the rest of us.

Bonus: The “limited edition” colors can be found at a nice discount online. Picked mine up from Excel.

Couldn’t agree more. I picked up a lightly used one in perfect condition for AU$75 as a spare, too. Simply don’t see a reason to get anything else.

Wahoo are the best deveices for a bike.