206 of 215 people found the following review helpful
on January 14, 2013
I've been using a Garmin Edge 800 for about 16 months now, so I'm pretty familiar w/ the functions, pros, cons and limitations. I've used the EDGE 810 for about 4 rides now... so far, so good
Overall, for an extra $50, I think this is a worth while upgrade. Although, you'd probably lose another $100 off retail reselling your old EDGE 800. So, if the you can swing the $150, do it. To me, the Best New Features I outlined are well worth the incremental costs... All you have to do is rationalize it by going out to ride some more!!!!
Best New Features!!
- Wireless course uploads to the device and auto sync from mobile app to GarminConnect are the best new features. The thing I dreaded the most was taking the device off the bike to upload my ride or to download new courses.
- Lack of page back/next buttons make screen seem larger. Larger fonts, stats, virtual partner and maps
- GarminConnect mobile app allows you to track, share, upload and review your activities and courses
- Wireless course uploads to the device and auto sync from mobile app to GarminConnect are the best new features
- Lack of page back/next buttons make screen seem larger. Larger fonts, stats, virtual partner and maps
- GarminConnect mobile app allows you to track, share, upload and review your activities and courses
- Text and numbers are more up-to-date looking, not the old DOS/Courier font block styles. Something as simple as this makes the device more
- Same size as the EDGE 800, so you won't have any surprises there.
- Same 3 hard buttons (Power, Lap/Reset, Start/Stop) for an easy transition
- New graphics make the 810 look a little more sharp. Nothing wrong with the old 800, but the 810 just has nice appeal and sets it apart from the outgoing device... But an onlooker would have to look close to see the differences. Color options would be nice
- Wireless connectivity with the iPhone is a real nice to have. Altho, I do notice substantial battery drain on the iPhone when using the live tracking feature (bluetooth + data + mobile app = huge battery drain)... be sure to carry a spare charger or auxiliary battery for your mobile device if you go for long rides. Or, look at my note below for an alternative.
- Gone are the page back/next buttons... so you don't have to tap on the screen for the buttons to show up and scroll thru your training pages/maps. Just scroll like on your smart phone to go page back/next
- Weather information?? meh... I can have it or not... I research my route and plan for weather conditions before going on a ride so this is neither a pro nor con... If you are the spur of the moment kind of rider, this might be handy
- If you have the City Navigator from your EDGE 800, IT WON'T WORK ON THE EDGE 810. You will need to buy a new SD Card with City Navigator. Once you insert the SD Card into an EDGE device, it pairs it with that SD card and you won't be able to transfer it to another unit. There is no straight forward method, but, if you Google it, you can find ways to circumvent this. No reason to have to buy another map if you already bought one for the EDGE 800.
- Somewhat disappointed that the resolution isn't any better than the EDGE 800. But then again, its a small screen and majority of the time, I am on the page w/ my ride stats, so its not critical
- No upgrade function to transfer all your previous settings.
- Live tracking relies on cell signal to send the data... if you ride up in mountainous terrain or desolate areas, this feature may not be worth much to you
- Garmin site mentions a Virtual Racer, which is similar to the Virtual Partner, but I couldn't find anything in the owners manual about it, nor have I figured out how to launch/set it from the device itself
- If you want to transfer your old activities, routes or custom wallpapers, you can just copy/paste while its connected to your computer
- Had 1 incident (in 16 months) with the EDGE 800 freezing during an 80-mile mapped route; No incidents after 4 rides with the EDGE 810, but 4 rides is not much to base this reliability assessment on
- iPhone has an app called CylceMeter (offers live tracking via googlemaps) and it has incredible customization in terms of notifications, announcements, settings, voices, email notifications, reads facebook messages... All this, and it is surprisingly very battery conservative... I can go riding for about 6 hours w/ music on the entire time and still have 30-40% battery life left.... it has everything but an Android version
- Wireless course uploads require you to create the course from the Garmin GarminConnect. I create, edit and share all my courses on RidewithGPS (check the site, add a www and a dot com). Faster and not as clumsy as the Garmin site, gives instant elevation stats, add custom course points (shows up on the EDGE)... lots of customization and flexibility
81 of 86 people found the following review helpful
on February 17, 2013
Was a little worried about buying this unit given some of the moderate reviews I had read and the price associated. I'm in a couple hundred miles thus far and I would give it high marks. Is it hard to read in daylight? It can be but once I mounted it on the extension bar so that it was in front of the handle bars and thus could adjust its angle I had no problems (mounting it on the stem was problematic because the angle caused more glare in direct sunlight) - so in this case the concern is valid, but easily mitigated by the mounting approach - at least for me.
Is it easy to use? Yes, though it takes handful of rides to figure out some of this nuances. Once you get it configured and setup it has been a breeze to the point where I don't really think about it - I just ride and then bring it in for charging, the wireless upload works like a champ and I never even think about it happening. I've used the device with heavy gloves and had no problem operating the device - a significant improvement over a smart phone which requires me to pull off my gloves in order to use.
Is it easy to setup? Configuring the screens to suite your personal taste isn't as easy / straightforward as an iPhone but with less than an hour of playing around with it I had it about perfect (google garmin edge 800 and there are numerous excellent sites that make this process simple). There are a wide variety of data points/measures that can be added to your display and it took me a couple times of trial and error to figure out which measures where truly useful to me and how easy it was to read a customized screen with anywhere from 3 - 10 attributes being shown (10 is a bit of a challenge with my eyesight).
Concerns on battery life? I can see where you could set this up to drain the battery faster than you would like, but the out of the box setting for me has shown no problems thus far. I would imagine a 100-150 mile ride wouldn't be a problem. I have a 200 mile ride coming up over the summar and can see where that might be a challenge (15+ hours) but between now and then will be experimenting with ways to extended battery life. If the advertised capacity is true, it won't be a problem and thus far I feel pretty good that will prove true.
Is it over-priced? Yes - without question, but it won't be the first time I over-spent for my riding and I have yet to regret it (including this purchase)
Would it be nicer if it had a higher resolution screen? Yes - but the point for me is the ride and not the computer, you don't spend that much time looking at the display/maps so it is more than adequate for the job.
Key selling points for me (which have proven true thus far). Ability to easily move from bike to bike without having to reconfigure is outstanding. Ability to pace myself against a virtual training partner or target pace - outstanding. Ability to store/recall saved rides - outstanding. Map navigation works excellent and is directly analogous to that found on automobile GPS units. Would highly recommend going to the 810 instead of the 510 if you anticipate much riding on unknown /unfamiliar courses or want to preserve the ability to break off on a longer ride and get home safely.
Its a fair criticism to say that many people with these Garmins also carry a smart-phone and I do as well. However twice last year, the battery on my iphone gave out while trying to use it as a bike computer - even with a Mophie case which extends the battery life (at the cost of weight). I now carry the phone but its for emergency purposes and do not use it as a GPS device as I've gotten more than comfortable with the Garmin for that purpose.
My recommendation would be to buy it if you are more of a serious rider and want/need navigation capabilities.
250 of 286 people found the following review helpful
on January 30, 2013
So I'll preface this with the statement that Garmin is the sole option if you want GPS navigation with cycling in mind. no one challenges them.....YET... Overall this unit works (excluding the many bugs and issues being reported) and it works better then anything else you can find on the market today. It IS the gold standard... while I will say that standard is rather weak. At the cost of this thing is totally overpriced.
You would be out of your mind to upgrade from the 800 to the 810... you essentially get nothing of value new. same garbage screen, same buttons, same case, same mount, same functionality.
What you do get is one thing. a Bluetooth feature designed to drain your iPhone/Android battery while providing near-useless functionality to auto-upload your rides to Garmin Connects website which very few cyclists use. Most use Strava or RideWithGPS. You get a silly view of what the current weather is in case you believe your own eyes are lying to you.
That about sums this thing up. This is a perfect example of where a company owns an entire market segment and choose to make no progress since no one is challenging them. Garmin support is poor on their best days and bugs go unresolved for years and across generations of devices. They simply do not care.
So I'll return this, keep my Edge 800 and I will be happy with the 800 knowing there's nothing else out there.
Anyone coming from an 800 - don't waste your time - it's IDENTICAL. If you stuck 1000 Garmin 800 users in a room and asked them to pick one thing they would like to see improved... they would all tell you. Put a better screen on it, and some extra battery life would be nice. Garmin went with using the same 1970's etcher-sketch screen and decided to actually reduce battery life... just goes to show how much they listen to the customer or care about their market segment.
I'm not sure I can even justify or recommend the 810 over the 800 to first-time GPS buyers... it's NOT worth $50.00 compared to the 800. and unless you really need visual map navigation, just get the lower Garmin line and pocket hundreds.
Overall - SUPER disappointed in Garmin. And most likely this will be the last edge unit as this technology will be obsolete in a year. we should be seeing some challenges coming soon when someone makes a Bluetooth 4.0 set of sensors or figures out a good universal Ant+ phone adapter... Then it's just a iPhone/Android applications taking advantage...which some already do!
If you don't need a cycling GPS this season and you own a smart phone... wait, the Garmin's days are numbered... especially since they offer no improvements in the past 5 years.
21 of 22 people found the following review helpful
on May 19, 2013
The Garmin Edge 810 is nice. I was torn between three stars and four.
The device itself is very nice. Battery life, with GPS running, is solid. The screen quality is pretty decent, but it's not a sharp high-res screen that you're probably used to from things like your cell phone or tablet. The first one I received had a dead pixel right in the middle of the screen, which is just one of those things that once you notice it, you can never _not_ notice it. The return process was fairly straight-forward, and the replacement worked fine. I haven't really used the Bluetooth capabilities of it yet, so I can't speak to that. The process of creating workouts on the device itself (rather than through Garmin Connect) is pretty easy, as was the general configuration and initial setup of the device.
I have two main problems with this device (so far):
1. Maps. After spending $500 for a bike computer, it's a little aggravating to find that the device includes no maps. All of those pretty fancy turn-by-turn navigation shots? Yeah, you can't do that out of the box with the Edge 810. It comes only with primary and secondary roads, which basically are major highways and nothing else. In order to be able to do all of that navigation stuff that makes the Edge 810 cool, you have to pay Garmin another $80 for maps.
Or so Garmin would have you think. There are free maps that you can load onto the device without having to pay Garmin another dime. All you need is a 4GB microSD card and maps from OpenStreet Maps. The process is described in detail at RideWithGPS: http://ridewithgps.com/edge_810
2. Unreliability when connecting to your computer. At least half of the time that you plug the device into your computer, Windows will indicate that it's an unrecognized device. It would seem that there's some sort of problem with the drivers. Garmin acknowledges this issue, but instead of fixing it, they just give you a work-around: with the device powered off, hold the LAP button when you connect the USB cable to your computer. Keep doing that until Windows doesn't pop up the "unrecognized device" bubble -- it may take a few tries.
My other issues are primarily with Garmin Connect, their web-based system for managing profiles, workouts, etc. It's a great tool (and it's free), but some things about it are kind of round-about and not particularly streamlined.
I think that overall, it's a great training tool to use. It has its quirks and issues, but you can work around one of those issues by getting free maps, and hopefully Garmin will address the other stuff.
21 of 23 people found the following review helpful
on October 1, 2014
First of all, if you're looking at the 810 versus the 1000, I'd go with the 810. If you're even looking at the 810, I would go with the 810. The 1000 is too big and the non-resistive screen is too sensitive. If you're looking at the 810, I'd go with the 810 because there isn't really a competitor, yet. (Come on, Magellan!)
That said, the 810 may have the worst software both in terms of UX/UI and reliability I have ever used on any product.
I used a 500 for years, had the occasional Garmin-wonkiness (eating files after rides) but mostly had good success. I used it with three bikes (CX, road, and XC hardtail), some with speed sensors (both the newer and older models) one with a power meter (a Quarq) and all with a HRM (the Garmin premium sensor and a Polar strap... because the Garmin strap will fail on you). It wasn't great, often slow to get a signal, but without maps it wasn't as useful when I'd travel with my bike.
So I bought the 810. Maps! (Note: you can get free maps for it, just do some Googling.)
The maps mostly work. Occasionally the GPS draws you off of the trail or road(parallel to it), but that could easily be the maps themselves (I've used the Garmin maps, a few open source ones, really the Garmin ones are not worth paying for).
There are, however, more serious issues with the device.
1) Long ride ANT+ issues. If I don't have a race on a weekend, I'll do at least one (usually two, one road, one XC) really long day. Like 5-9 hours total time, lots of climbing, etc. At some point (usually when I hit 70 miles on the road), it quits reading new ANT+ signals. I can be coasting downhill and my cadence will say 85 and power 300 (funny it's often after a climb). It will stay like this for the duration of the ride. I have tried resets and nothing seems to help.
2) Using courses. A few times I've done a race and managed to get the course (as gpx or tcx) before and attempted to ride some of it. Sometimes this works fine. Other times, the device will get hung up and even completely lock up, requiring a restart. Then, for some reason, it will recover the file BUT it will have trouble acquiring a satellite signal. To get it to work, I usually have to go into the GPS satellite view and let it sit there for a few minutes. Then it will finally get a signal. Unlike the 500, the 810 usually gets signal right away so it's weird that this happens. Last weekend I was trying to do a preview lap for an XC endurance race and this happened to me five times. It was very bizarre.
3) GPS lockup. Occasionally, I'll be climbing and it will quit updating elevation. I assume it uses a combination of barometric pressure and GPS to determine this, but I can climb sections of mountain roads that I know are a few hundred feet and the profile won't change. Sometimes it recovers, and I get a weird right angle in the elevation profile from where I rode. A few times, it's just completely hosed the file.
4) Bluetooth connection. I've used it with an iPhone 5s and got it to sync with the device for one week. For one blissful week, my partner could use livetrack and I could upload rides to Garmin Connect directly. For one week. Then it quit syncing. It has never recovered despite numerous resets. My iPhone uses Bluetooth fine with a Basis watch, two different bluetooth speakers, our Subaru's stereo, and a dongle for our home stereo. No issues. But the Garmin appears to be a lost cause.
I have other complaints about how clunky and poorly designed the UX is (I do that for a living), but that is not nearly as bad as these other issues. Here is the thing, though. I have opened tickets with Garmin for each of those issues and only once got a reply. They have the absolute worst customer service in the industry, it seems. I have a ticket I opened 9 days ago that still hasn't been updated. Be warned. They suck.
The bottom line is, it's a real P.O.S. For as much as it costs, it barely works. But, you will end up buying it anyway, because there really isn't a better option. Perhaps it's just hard to hire competent developers that want to live in Olathe, Kansas. Or competent customer service.
19 of 22 people found the following review helpful
on June 27, 2013
If Garmin's target audience is the cyclist who rides a few dozen miles per summer and thinks that spending big money on flashy parts makes them a better rider, then this product is perfect. If Garmin thinks this device will suit the needs of a serious cyclist, they have a lot of redesign to do.
Starting with the positives first, the 810 does do some things well.
- Bluetooth connectivity sends my ride data to my android or ios device, which is very convenient both for me and for people who are tracking me (family, friends, coach). I also get weather alerts back from the device I'm paired with which isn't really necessary, but nice.
- Data collection: I can't think of anything else I'd need to add for data tracking. It even reads the temperature, which is not a necessity but I find is interesting during a very long ride (particularly because my speed tends to climb up as the temperature dips down).
But the negatives are frustrating enough to make me hate this device overall, and wish like wild for a better alternative.
-- "Touch" Screen: The touch screen is possibly the worst design decision made for any gadget in the past ten years. First of all, it is a pressure sensitive screen - to make it respond you have to PUSH into it. It's up to you if you want to qualify that as a "touch" screen. It doesn't work well at all and I usually have to scratch it with my finger nail 3-4 times before I get it to work. Please, just give me side buttons like the earlier Edge devices. Second, this is a sports device - I'm not using this in the clean comfort of my living room. I'm out in the rain, I'm sweating in the sun, I'm getting blasted with mud, etc. This screen is constantly smeared with water, food stuffs, dirt, sweat, and whatever else I have to smear across it every time I need to touch it. So the screen is dirty 100% of the time, and if you try to wipe it off you end up triggering an action of some sort. You have to lock the screen before you wipe it, which is a huge hassle particularly in the rain. I really have to wonder what Garmin was thinking with the "touch" screen idea - is the next model going to include Angry Birds?
-- Reliability / Stability: As expected from Garmin, its very unreliable. I'll be riding along and when I look down to check the map the device is off. Just like the 705 I previously owned I can never count on this device to work. On the bright side I can just turn the device back on and start the timer back up, but if I'm racing a century this system crash can cause me to miss a turn. Also, I have mysteriously lost entire rides with no idea why. The 810 asks you at the end of every ride if you want to save or discard what you just recorded, which is extremely stupid - YES GARMIN, I *ALWAYS* WANT MY RIDE DATA. I don't know why they would even put that up as a question. Is it so common for people to go out and do long rides and then wish they had an easy way of deleting all of that recorded data? But even though I have always saved my data, I have gone home to find some missing and I don't know why.
-- Battery life: Another incredibly stupid design decision by Garmin. The battery is not swappable!! Garmin must not realize that some cyclists ride more than a few miles per week. In fact, some of us do more than 12 hours of riding very frequently. Unfortunately the 810 does not get more than 12 hours of battery life from a single charge, and there are no good options for resolving this. You can try to connect a battery pack to it, but there are problems with that approach. Most people won't be able to do more than a 200k ride with the 810. With all sounds disabled, backlight off, and bluetooth off I get between 11-12 hours.
-- No Pause: I can't understand how they missed this one, but there is no way to pause the clock (as you could do on the 705). I had to do a google search to find out if I just couldn't find the pause, but found other complaining about the same thing. Garmin really did forget the pause.
-- Durability: Be very careful and keep this thing in a safe location. It is a very delicate piece of plastic with a screen designed to be scratched up quickly.
-- Value: The price is absolutely obscene. You could buy a tablet for less money, and it could do so much more (if only you could use a tablet as a bike computer...). For such a small, delicate device that does so little and is so poorly designed it is disgusting that Garmin charges so much. If only there was any decent competition. Keep in mind also that you will end up paying big money if you want maps. For the massive price of this thing you'd expect them to be included, but they are not.
In summary, if you are a casual cyclist and you want a cool toy to impress your non-cyclist friends with and you have money to waste, go for it. If you are a serious cyclist, you should realize that this device is cheaply built, poorly designed, and not reliable. Make sure you have some kind of backup for important rides.
11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
on October 16, 2013
The biggest draw for me in purchasing this particular unit was the ability to plan and upload courses of 50+ miles that could include many turns and back roads to avoid traffic and prevent me having to stop periodically to make sure I was taking the right turn. While this unit performs well with respect to speed, cadence, heart rate, etc. it does not navigate well and is very buggy.
The unit is inconsistent and almost all of my rides the turn by turn directions have stopped working in one form or another despite upgrading to the latest firmware. In short, it does not perform as advertised and for the price it should.
UPDATE 12/29/13 - As mentioned in my initial review, the unit did not meet expectations. Just too much $$ for something I felt was overly buggy & also seemed to have outgrown the hardware platform it was based on. In the end I wound up returning it and happy for the decision based on Garmin forum posts on the latest firmware, I may revisit in the spring as it is really the only game in town for cycling.
However, big thumbs up to Amazon for great customer service and return shipping.
10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
on July 14, 2013
I haven't had the 810 very long, but it seems to be great so far. One of the things I am trying to master is following a course which I created on GarminConnect. This is your virtual cue sheet and it solves a tremendous number of problems, at least for me. On they subject of "trying to master"-- there is a tremendous amount of functionality in this device, and I think most people are experiencing a learning curve in optimizing their use of the system-- I've made up my mind that I WILL master it since I believe that it's going to be very much worth it.
One piece of advice: if you buy your own Micro SD memory card to enable you to install a number of maps on the card rather than buying the pre-loaded map card from Garmin, be aware that the first 50% of the time on the progress bar is for downloading to a temporary file on your computer, while the second "50%" is for installing the file to the Micro SD card. I have fast download speed from the internet and was able to cover the first 50% of the progress bar in under 10 minutes. However, the process of my system installing the map to the SD Card took probably 6-7 hours. Be aware that the progress bar from GarminConnect gives wildly inaccurate "time remaining" indications which might make you think that the transfer to the card has stalled. What you need to know is that the second half of the process is tremendously slow-- if the "percentage complete" indication makes progress at 1% per 30 minutes or better, consider that the transfer from your computer to the card is proceeding correctly.
19 of 23 people found the following review helpful
on January 22, 2013
Activity Profiles: these allow the user to create different sets of training pages and maps. I have created two profiles, Navigate and Just Ride. On my Navigate profile my map has two fields, Distance to Next and Distance to Destination. Additionally, I have three training pages. The first one has five fields, Speed, Average Speed, Distance, Maximum Speed, and Total Ascent. The first three fields have very big numbers which can be seen at a glance.
The second page is hopelessly busy with eight fields, Speed, Average Speed, Maximum Speed, Distance, Elevation, Grade, Total Ascent and Time of Day. Because there are eight fields, the numbers are quite small, but still readable.
The third page has only two fields, Time of Day and Temperature. I would like to have a third field on this page, Battery Level, but the picture of the battery is too small to be useful. Maybe Garmin will fix that in the future.
The pages on my Just Ride profile are just like the ones on my Navigate profile except the two map fields are now Speed and Average Speed. I wouldn't be surprised if sometime in the future I do away with those fields entirely and just ride with a nice, clean map.
I anticipate creating a third Activity Profile for hiking and mountain biking. I have three map sets installed on my 810, the general background map that comes with the unit, an OpenStreetMap of the entire U.S., and an OpenMTB map which has off-road trails for mountain bikers and hikers. Since the 810 can navigate these trails just like roads, I plan to enable the OpenMTB map in this profile. Yes, you can select different map sets in each profile if you wish.
Big numbers: as mentioned above, on some of my pages, I have a limited number of fields. This results in numbers so big that even my very old eyes have no trouble reading them. Garmin has done a much better job on the 810 compared to the 800 in this regard.
No support for .tcx files. The 810, like the 800, provides very good general navigation. One specialized form of navigation is the ability to follow a track or route you have created. I create many routes on a website called RideWithGPS.com. As you draw your route on that site, they create a detailed cue sheet that lists every turn. I also add prompts (cues) for warnings of dangerous train tracks, turns into parking lots, regroup locations, etc. With .tcx navigation those cues pop up on your screen. As I mentioned above, I have two fields on my map page, Distance to Next and Distance to Destination. On my 800 Distance to Next is the distance to the next prompt I created. Without .tcx support, Distance to Next is where the 810's navigation thinks you should turn. It is not always right.
Messages Dim the Screen: I have Auto Pause activated on all of my Edge units, Garmin Edge 500, Garmin Edge 800, and my new Garmin Edge 810. On both the 500 and the 800 when you stop at a traffic light, a message pops on the screen saying, Auto Pause. When you start up again, a message pops up saying Auto Resume. The 810 does the same thing in principle, but goes one step further and dims the entire page to the point that in anything less than direct sunlight, the page and the message can't be read. Yes, you can touch the screen and make the message go away, and yes, it goes away by itself after a few seconds, but I really can't see what is gained by dimming the whole screen. Maybe Garmin will fix that in the future.
Blue tooth. I might get around to this in the future, but right now I can't get too excited about it. Now, if Bluetooth included the ability to send a course to a riding buddy, I might get very excited, very fast.
All the ANT devices. I just can't get excited about linking up with cadence sensors, power meters, and heart monitors. Most of my riding friends feel very differently and use these devices all the time. Me? I like to navigate and I like to go on bike rides. After that, leave me alone.
So, bottom line? Even with its obvious shortcomings, the Garmin 810 is a very good unit. If Garmin adds support for .tcx navigation and fixes the very irritating screen dimming issue, it will be pretty much everything I expect out of a GPS unit.
10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
on October 2, 2013
I have had terrible luck with the Garmin 810 which I received as a gift in April. This is my first experience with Garmin. If I change screens during the ride, the unit freezes up and is worthless for the rest of the ride. One time I touched the screen to wipe off a smudge and it shut down 4 hrs into a ride. I have done the most recent upgrade and it hasn't helped at all. I would love to have a Garmin that works, but I'm also afraid if I return this one, that I will end up with either a refurbished unit, or another new one, that performs as poorly as the 810 I have. Do I downgrade? Seems ridiculous. I have talked to Garmin several times about the problem, so I am passing this information on so they can work on fixing the problems. Would love to know if anyone has returned one and received one that actually worked in return.