Garmin Edge 800 Review
The Garmin Edge 800 is a GPS touch screen bike computer that allows the user to track, monitor, and record all sorts of ride data. It has all the features of a typical bicycle computer (distance, odometer, current speed, max. speed, avg. speed, etc.) as well as many more. Providing navigation and performance monitoring, the Garmin Edge 800 is ideal for touring, commuting, competitive cycling and mountain biking. It has a built-in basemap and tracks your distance, speed, location and ascent/descent. Use it with an ANT+ heart rate monitor, speed/cadence sensor, or compatible power meter for a finely tuned analysis of your ride. You can buy the Garmin Edge 800 in a couple different bundles.
The basic package or non-bundled unit includes the head unit, mounts, USB cable and AC adaptor. The non-bundled unit can track all sorts of ride data using the built in GPS. The “Performance and Navigation” bundle includes extra gadgets such as a HR monitor, speed/cadence sensor, memory cards preloaded with local maps, mounts, charger and AC adaptor. Otherwise the units are the same. There is just increased functionality allowing the user to finely tune the ride analysis with the bundled version. If you buy the basic bundle you’ll need to purchase street maps separately and download onto a micro-SD card that simply slides into the unit. Additional country maps can be purchased from Garmin.
The Garmin Edge 800 is similar in shape and styling to the current Edge 500 though upsized by roughly 20-30 percent. In terms of functionality though, it is much closer to the bigger Edge 705 and yet the 800 boasts a bigger display than either one because of the more efficient packaging of the touchscreen that omits all but three physical buttons.
There are many features that set this model apart from Garmin’s other athletic computers and from other manufacturers. Many of these features are geared towards both the competition cyclist, as well as the hobbyist who only cycles on certain days. Different users may find different applications for each of these features.The large, sensitive touch screen is designed to be as responsive as it is durable, this rugged touch screen allows for responsive use with even gloved hands.
The sleek look is designed to maximize a cyclist’s aerodynamic performance.The fully-featured GPS system that is the hallmark of Garmin products is also present. Customizable routes, area-based activities and more GPS functions are built right into this flexible cycle computer. The digital functions; data management, training tools and even compatibility with microSD cards make this one of the most advanced cycle computers available today.
Such an advanced device is not without its faults, though. Some users have complained that many of the features on the Edge 800 came half-baked and defective. Others complain that the many meters inside of the device get thrown off randomly, leaving a biker’s calculations and gathered data completely inaccurate. Others have noted that the manuals and pamphlets included are next to useless, lacking any informative information and instruction.
Overall, the Edge 800 is the best bike-speci?c GPS unit to date. It is robust, with logical menus, and its touchscreen is both easy and fun to use, should you be lucky enough to get a hold of a working unit.