Garmin 520 Plus vs 530

Looking for opinions… Is the speed/new functionality of the 530 worthwhile if the 520 Plus can be gotten for ~$200 with respect to end of lifecycle/holiday deals?

I jumped from the original 520 to 530, and love the speed/functionality. Sorry I don’t recall if 520 plus has same speed as original 520.


1 Like

I like the 520 better, because it is easeyer to use

atleast it is to me

Thanks for the replies so far. I went ahead and pulled the trigger on a 520+. Found the Sensor/HRM Bundle for $259 on Walmart’s site as well as the Factory Outlet site and figure that’s a significant value with the sensors over the 530 for me right now. Plus I can return it to Walmart in store so if it doesn’t meet my needs I’ll do so and focus on the 530.

Never had anything but a 530 and love it. Well I had a wahoo bolt which i liked but I am a Garmin person for sure.


I had the 520 Plus, and moved to the 530, and don’t regret it for a minute.

The 520+ was unstable, and crashed a couple of times on me deep in unfamiliar boondocks. The supposed 15 hr battery life would take a huge hit once I connected my Varia radar, such that I would struggle to last a 200km ride. And route calculation was SLOOOOW.

After one particularly aggravating ride where it crashed 3 times in 50 km, and the battery died 160 km into a 200 km ride, I contacted Garmin Support, who helped me reflash the firmware, which improved things somewhat, but it was never really reliable.

In addition to the processor speed, the 530 has a larger screen (a definite plus for my ageing eyes), longer battery life, more advanced training metrics (including heat and altitude acclimation), and more routing options.

I really couldn’t recommend the 520+. If you are looking for a budget unit, consider the 130. If you want mapping and navigation, go for the 530.

I’ll eventually get a 530 but I’ve had good luck with the 520+, mine’s never crashed or anything like that. For its small size it has worked really well for me navigating gravel rides in places I’d never been before.

I must not use mine in a manner that processing power matters much because I don’t notice it, but I primarily use it for preplanned routing that I load ahead of time.

Went 530 too, it’s fantastic. Fast and full of stats

1 Like

Two months ago I moved from my old 510 to the 530. I like the physical buttons better than the touch screen. The processor and gps upgrades were noticeable in the speed of the unit. I’m quite pleased with mine. I was all set to jump to wahoo or Lezyne but stuck with the big G due to what I felt was better mapping and navigation. The battery life on the 530 is great to boot!

I had the 520+ which was crashing all the times. I got a replacement but unfortunately same problem. Garmin checked it and couldn’t find the issue. I then upgraded to 530. Not one problem so far