If you're searching for new Garmin cycling computers, this post is for you. The Edge 830 and a new set of dual ANT+/Bluetooth Smart Speed & Cadence sensors were all recently released by the company (review coming up momentarily).
Contrary to popular belief, the two new Edge models represent impressive array of advancements over their predecessors. While there are some visual similarities, there are many new functions hidden behind the hood.
They've added some features that should appeal to both road cyclists and mountain bikers in the new units. You can now measure everything from how effectively you ride a downhill path to the distance of your jumps on mountain bikes (mountain biking metrics). On the other hand, fellow cyclists will be more likely to use of more advanced workouts tools like temperature and altitude monitoring. As a result, assigning a specific target audience to all of the characteristics is almost pointless since so many of them overlap with each other.
For the most part, my reviews are unbiased, and I try to cover all aspects of a specific product. I will describe what I experience over the last couple of months with this device.
Even though I may get small comission if you purchase the stuff I review, I only recommend something I have used personally and find it good. Using the links spread across this article to support this blog would be much appreciated.
There are just a few differences between the Edge 530 and 830. I will first discuss the improvement.
It's now or never for the Edge 830's latest and greatest features. The Edge 830 has 18 additional features compared to the Edge 530.
Our Independent Rating
Here are some terms for those who want to read in a more urban setting. Keep in mind that I'm sure there are additional nuances that I've overlooked, such as changes to particular menus or other little details, but the list below compiles everything into one coherent list of the things that matter to you. Using the Edge 530 as a baseline, I've listed the changes that have occurred.
- From 2.3" to 2.6" increase in display size,
- the additional battery life was improved from 15 to 20 hours and to 48 hours in energy-saving mode,
- the processing speed was significantly boosted.
- Map navigation on the device now includes Garmin Heatmaps, which are similar to those on the Edge 1030.
- ClimbPro now tells how much mileage and elevation is left for each hill on the route.
- Garmin Connect now displays grit, flow, and jump metrics for mountain biking model on both the device and Garmin Connect.
- Trailforks maps have been included in the unit. Integrated Trailforks data and maps from across the world (no downloads required)
- Mountain bikers can now see alternative routes at trail forks thanks to a new feature called "ForkSight."
- They can also utilize "Heat Accustomation," which automatically adjusts training metrics like speed and recovery time to account for changes in temperature and humidity.
- Performance and recovery measures will now take into consideration altitude automatically.
- Page for exercising has been redesigned.This incorporates support for the Training Plan API.
- Smart notifications for Hydration and Nutrition: As a result of utilizing a course or route, it will automatically calculate how much water and calories you should be eating. -Added Hydration/Nutrition Tracking: It enables you to record this data in ride summary screens and register it on Garmin Connect.
- In addition, Edge Battery Pack Support was added. The Garmin integrated battery pack may now be attached to the Edge device (you can still use generic USB cable too).
- Bluetooth Smart sensors like heartbeat, power, and velocity may now be paired with the app. Added Advanced power analysis: This displays your mean maximum power across various durations/time frames (like many training sites).
- Auto activity upload
- Cycling dynamics: It includes MTB dynamics (Mountain Bike Dynamics), riding in quiter roads, and city riding
- When the bike is moved, the "Find my Edge" feature records the precise GPS position on your phone and sounds a loud warning. Used at cafes and restroom breaks (in case the unit pops off)
- Weather and gear suggestions to the training plan: It just tells you to relax when the weather is frigid. Refined user interface that may take a few ride efforts to get used to for some people (or just myself).
You've got it all? Good. However, Garmin seldom removes functionality from one device to another, although I do sometimes see unintended implications of other enhancements.
However, I have yet to come across any of them when out on the road. The precision provided by GPS, altimeters, and the like is addressed in a different section.
No address-specific navigation is possible with Edge 530, although you can do it with Edge 830; no searchable database of points of interest (hotels, restaurants, railway stations, etc.) is available on Edge 530; the device does not have a touchscreen.
Because it lacks a touchscreen, the Edge 530 includes four extra buttons.
Using a touchscreen cycling computer instead of buttons is the deciding factor, and several user interface elements play a role in this. While the Edge 830 can direct you to an exact location, the Edge 530 requires you to move your pointer over that location in order to go there.
Both are equally supportive of pre-planned itineraries and courses. On the Edge series, I can't recall more than a handful of occasions in the previous five to seven years when I've been directed to a particular location or POI by the system. For the most part, what I do is guided by a set of predetermined rules or parameters.
My Experience with Garmin Edge 830
Do you already have an Edge 1030? Almost all of the additional features listed above may be obtained by updating the firmware on your Edge 1030.
A significant exception is the absence of a pre-loaded mountain bike Trailforks map owing to licensing issues (as Garmin licenses that from Trailforks). However, Garmin claims that the other functionalities will be available in a future firmware update.
As a start, I'll go through the device's fundamentals step by step. Things haven't changed much here if you've previously used a Garmin Edge, depending on whatever version you're using. You're seeing a lot of the Edge 1030's user interface in this smaller form size.
The Edge 1030's greater screen size is the only reason I can think of to buy it right now (which is a perfectly fine reason).
Two major buttons on the Edge 830 are utilized for starting and stopping, as well as generating a lap. You can hit these buttons no matter where you are in the menus, since that's the sole purpose they serve.
There are some people who would have preferred Garmin to transfer these buttons to the top of the device since certain out-of-front standard mount make it difficult to use them with gloves. They're stuck in the same spot as previous models, which is a bummer. I've never had a problem with that location, but it tends to depend a lot on the mounts you're using and, in certain circumstances, the bike layout as well.
A single button is located on the left-hand side, which is used mostly for turning the device on and off.
A responsive touchscreen is, of course, built into the display itself. There were some difficulties with the Edge 820's touchscreen, and Garmin believes that this should be resolved, and I've experienced no touch-screen-related issues with the Edge 830 so far (even in the rain).
Garmin eventually fixed the Edge 820 touch screen production difficulties. In spite of this, I haven't come across anything new in the previous month.
Navigation, Training, and "Everything Else" are the three main categories on the home menu (pressing those three little lines).
While Garmin has made some progress in this area, there's still more to be done. For example, the My Stats section, for example, does not appear in the Training part, which, in turn, includes all of the real training load information. To place training metrics in the training area, as the joke goes, "You had one job!"
Widgets and system information are both accessible by swiping down from the top of the screen. Things like sensor status and GPS status are included here. The Garmin Edge 830 is the latest Garmin product that uses Sony GPS chipsets instead of MediaTek chipsets.
Increasing battery life is the primary driver behind this development, which has been adopted by almost the entire sports technology sector in the last year (Polar, Suunto, COROS, and undoubtedly others). However, we'll get to GPS accuracy in a moment. Garmin's implementation supports both GPS+GLONASS and GPS+GALILEO, in addition to standard GPS. Each activity profile you create or use may be customized in this way.
Garmin Edge 830's performance
An alarm function, device route creation, turn-by-turn navigation, customizable apps, Strava integration, and group messaging and tracking are all included in the Edge 830's impressive array of features.
On top of all of that is information on your VO2 max, recovery status, and training load, as well as altitude and heat acclimation and your nutrition and hydration status following rides. The Garmin Edge 830 is a lightweight and elegant gadget.
Setting Up And Using The Garmin Edge 830 Apps
It is easy to connect the Edge 830 immediately to any WiFi network thanks to its internal WiFi and Bluetooth capabilities. The gadget will automatically connect to Garmin's servers and sync with your device once connected.
If there is no WiFi access and you have your phone, you can use Bluetooth to connect to the internet.
With or without the smartphone app, Garmin Express, or Garmin Connect, the Edge 830 sets up in an astonishingly simple manner. The high performance GPS Cycling Computer with Mapping is ready to use as soon as you turn it on for the first time and enter a few key pieces of personal information (which may subsequently be updated if necessary).
Apps for Android and iOS allow you to do anything you want with a few taps: plot your route, track your upcoming training load, see your performance and health information, and sync your activities with your Edge 830 device.
There is a Garmin Connect web-based app and the Garmin Express cycling computers software that are both used for this purpose on the PC. The Garmin Connect smartphone app has all of the features and functions that are accessible online in Garmin Connect. I was blown away by the ease of use and seamless integration across apps.
The Garmin Edge 830's connectivity with Strava is also top-notch, and it only took a few clicks to authorize Strava to access my data before the two devices were linked and my rides were synchronized.
3rd Party Platforms Connection of Garmin Edge 830
Even though the device-only option lacks some of the more prominent training elements, the cycling computers aren't significantly hampered as a result. With the compatible sensors package, you'll get a speed sensor, heart rate monitor, and a cadence sensor for an additional fee.
The Edge 830 features a group messaging and monitoring function that's wonderful in theory, but it needs a lot of organizational skill to really operate in practice. For GroupTrack to operate, your friends must have a LiveTrack-compatible Edge cycling computers, such as an Edge 520 or Edge 1000.
You can connect it to smartphone when Garmin Connect app activated, paired and running LiveTrack. The 3rd party platforms are plenty.
The device's capacity to serve as a bike alarm is included in this feature set. If you want to use the incident detection function, which notifies a pre-specified emergency contacts that you've been in an accident, you'll need a smartphone that can connect to the device.
That being said, this function has a hard time distinguishing between bumps in the road, sudden halts, and jolting gravel parts (if that's your thing). Depending on how hard you're riding, your designated caller may get more alerts than they bargained for, so I left it off to prevent having to push the cancel call button when it malfunctions.
In the event that your bike is moved, the Edge 830 will send an audible alert to your smartphone.
This may seem like a good plan on the surface, but it won't stop or dissuade a determined burglar from making off with your prized bicycle and high-tech GPS unit.
When you connect your smartphone to the Edge 830, you'll get alerts of incoming calls and text messages, which might help you decide whether or not to answer your phone during your relaxing ride.
The map screen might be difficult to see when trundling down a rough or gravelly area, so keep that in mind.
Garmin Edge 830 Route-Finding And Mapping
The Edge 830's turn-by-turn navigation is superb. An exceptional degree of information and precise direction instructions are provided by the on-screen map when zoomed in. There are both visible and aural warnings of upcoming turns.
Navigating alerts with a map appear above your current screen, ensuring that you never miss another turn. If you're not at the beginning point of a course, the gadget knows where to send you.
A pre-programmed route on the smartphone makes navigating a breeze, but relying on the gadget's own smart routing capability may be a bumpy ride — literally.
It's easy to utilize the intelligent route mapping, but certain menu options might be a touch cumbersome. You may have to go through two, three, or even four menus in order to make the adjustment you want.
However, even if you don't have access to a smartphone or computer, the ease with which you can now create routes is considerably superior to what was previously feasible on a device from a usability and technological standpoint.
Creating a route on your smartphone may leave you feeling let down. There are a few things you may have noticed if you've used North America Google Maps to navigate on your bike previously, particularly on gravel or mountain bike rides.
Bridleways and certain forest paths are missing from the in-app map. In the app, the theme of omission continues, making it difficult to organize an interesting journey from your phone.
This software utilizes Google Maps, which might be lacking in depth depending on the sort of ride you're doing.
When it comes to the in-app map, you'll have to pray that you don't encounter any unpleasant horseback riders when you accidentally land on a bridleway, which the gadget is unable to distinguish from a pathway.
Is It Good In Principle But Bad In Practice?
Ride type such as road, mixed, gravel, city riding and mountain riding are just a few of the settings that may be set on the Edge 830.
Theoretically, this amount of customizability is enticing, and I had great expectations that I'd be able to locate previously unexplored roads, pathways, and gravel parts near my house.
Garmin's Trendline popularity routing employs data similar to Strava's heatmaps to assist in the creation of fantastic routes. If you want to bike like a native, Garmin promises it can help. For example, the Edge 830 uses this data to help you find the most popular mountain bike trails or roads in any given location.
It may take anything from 15 seconds to a few minutes for the device to construct a route, depending on the length of the route and other characteristics, such as waypoints. Either a straight line or a circle may be used to go from A to B.
Even while the route design tool of the Garmin Edge 830 is useful, it lacks the intelligence required to be exceptional.
Although the gadget claims to be able to discriminate between various kinds of roads and paths, I was disappointed in its actual performance since it often takes me on the most congested highways or, conversely, on the least appropriate pathways.
Instead of taking me down the busiest main road in the vicinity, the gadget insisted on routing me along the gravel canal path I was standing on when I asked it to give me an appropriate gravel or mixed path route from my present position to a selected waypoint.
No matter how many times I toggled route options like quickest or least climb on or off, the gadget stubbornly refused to take me down the gravel path as I'd asked.
While the gadget was able to present me with an accurate Garmin cycle map, it didn't have the ability to provide me with a path that was entirely on unpaved roads. The byway suitable for agricultural traffic, rather than 25mm-wide tires, was the best option for my needs, the gadget concluded. There was a nearby tarmaced road that would have carried me to the same destination as the byway.
Fine-Tune Your Journey Using The Route Choices
To go back on your original path, the rerouting tool suggests making u-turns at the places where you deviated from it. Disobeying the device's directions will eventually lead you to other routes that will either take you back to the initial deviation point or farther down the path, depending on how persistent you are in disobeying.
If you want to return to your starting point, the "bring you home" feature works well, and you may select to take a new route or continue on the same one you just took. This solution has the same drawbacks as other on-device routes, but it's useful if you ever need to go back to square one.
Garmin's claims of 'riding like a local' experiences are not entirely accurate; however, the device's route-creation capability could come in handy if you find yourself in a jam.
According to a variety of criteria, the GPS can produce a route in 15 seconds to a few minutes.
Garmin Edge 830 Has A Variety Of Training Options
Garmin says that the Edge 830 can also compute your VO2 max, FTP, and lactate threshold, much like the Edge 820. A heart rate sensor and power meters are required for these functionalities, which are not included in my base-spec device.
There are a lot of benefits to purchasing additional sensors if you like geeking out and want to know all the nitty-gritty details of a new bike you got from the bike shop.
Garmin Edge 830's Screens And Data
One screen shows your current speed, average speed, distance traveled, duration, calories burned (if you have a suitable sensor attached), and current elevation in record mode. You may see your current speed and distance, as well as your average speed from past laps, on the lap screen, which records a new lap every 5 kilometers by default.
Your current position is shown on the map, along with your path if you've specified one. Your current direction and altitude are shown on the last screen, along with a graph of previous elevation data.
Each display is clear and concise, providing you with all the information you need for any particular journey.
The Connect IQ Store offers a variety of applications, widgets, and data fields for customizing the device's interface and performance. The shop may easily be accessed from the home screen of a smartphone.
Garmin Edge 830 Battery Life
The Garmin Edge 830 has an 8-hour battery life in high-intensity efforts of riding.
With GPS mode, Garmin promises an additional battery life of up to 20 hours; with a power pack or in battery save mode, that number rises to 40 hours.
To be honest, these stats are likely to be a lot lower than they seem, but like with any electrical item, its battery life depends on what and how you're using it.
With a lot of gadget fiddling, route re-programming, and general usage, two hours of recording in navigation mode depleted roughly 25% of the battery.
A battery life of eight hours of on-the-trail recording can be extrapolated from these intensive use patterns. This is a big improvement over the Edge 820, which only lasted four hours under the same settings.
The Edge 830 is a truly class-leading GPS that delivers several essential mountain biking features above and beyond its rivals, despite its rather clumsy interface.
In terms of maps and navigation, the system is straightforward to use, and it's easy to set up routes. However, Garmin's promises of riding like a local were not met by the on-device route computation.
If you don't already have suitable sensors, it's well worth the investment in additional sensor compatibility to get the most out of the on-device data and displays.
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