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PostPosted: Mon Sep 26, 2011 7:11 am 
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Joined: Mon Sep 26, 2011 6:21 am
Posts: 1
I have come to the conclusion the GPS stands for "Garmin Products Suck". I went through four Edge 305's and now I'm on my second Edge 500 and either I'm the most unlucky guy on the planet, or Garmin really has not been able to bring a reliable product to the market.

Garmin as a company needs a wake up call. Unfortunately there really isn't a viable competitor to their cycling products. Therefore, while their ideas are great, their implementation sucks! And, unfortunately no one else has developed a competitive product that is actually reliable.

I'm sick and tired of spending hundreds of dollars on crap products that profess to do everything, but in reality only do little. Especially when you consider the lack of reliability.

Maybe putting GPS, HR, Speed, Cadence and Power into a single device is truly not technically feasible... I'm okay with that; just let me know what the reality is and I'll adjust accordingly.

I can only imagine that team Garmin Cervelo riders must be given a six-pac of Garmin 500's so they ultimately get t least one that works. Their product is crap and it's unfortunate that another enterprising company hasn't come up with a competitive offering and run these amateurs out of business.

BTW, not only is their 500 product unreliable junk, their online software solution is only further reinforcement that Garmin is either unaware or unable to understand and meet the needs of the cycling community. Their software solutions are an incredible joke and an insult to anyone who has spent hundreds of dollars on their products; they have been eclipsed by the likes of Training Peaks and Strava. Garmin has had more than enough time to fine-tune their software development efforts and they have failed badly. This just reinforces the fact that they either don't understand the needs of their users, or they just don't give a crap.


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Posted: Mon Sep 26, 2011 7:11 am 


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 26, 2011 4:03 pm 
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mmcnelly wrote:
I have come to the conclusion the GPS stands for "Garmin Products Suck". I went through four Edge 305's and now I'm on my second Edge 500 and either I'm the most unlucky guy on the planet, or Garmin really has not been able to bring a reliable product to the market.

Garmin as a company needs a wake up call. Unfortunately there really isn't a viable competitor to their cycling products. Therefore, while their ideas are great, their implementation sucks! And, unfortunately no one else has developed a competitive product that is actually reliable.

I'm sick and tired of spending hundreds of dollars on crap products that profess to do everything, but in reality only do little. Especially when you consider the lack of reliability.

Maybe putting GPS, HR, Speed, Cadence and Power into a single device is truly not technically feasible... I'm okay with that; just let me know what the reality is and I'll adjust accordingly.


I can only imagine that team Garmin Cervelo riders must be given a six-pac of Garmin 500's so they ultimately get t least one that works. Their product is crap and it's unfortunate that another enterprising company hasn't come up with a competitive offering and run these amateurs out of business.

BTW, not only is their 500 product unreliable junk, their online software solution is only further reinforcement that Garmin is either unaware or unable to understand and meet the needs of the cycling community. Their software solutions are an incredible joke and an insult to anyone who has spent hundreds of dollars on their products; they have been eclipsed by the likes of Training Peaks and Strava. Garmin has had more than enough time to fine-tune their software development efforts and they have failed badly. This just reinforces the fact that they either don't understand the needs of their users, or they just don't give a crap.

I find my 500 unit to be totally reliable, although I've only had it for about 3 or 4 months and about 1200 miles. I use the cadence/speed sensor and HR strap from the 305 unit I had. I uploaded the latest software 2.80, I believe and works well. Great battery life and very intuitive and easy to use.

The 305 was another story. Very short battery life, maybe I could get 40 miles at 32 degrees in the winter at the end. It also "died" on 3 or four occasions. It had to be brought back to life by holding down 3 buttons at the same time,which didn't always work unless the unit was plugged into a charger. Not practical on the road.

About half the riders in my club have one version or another of a Garmin and they all are happy with the exception of a few similar complaints I had with the 305. Obviously if I was that unhappy with the 305 I wouldn't have purchased the 500

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"Really fast people are frustrating, but they make you faster. When you get faster, you might frustrate someone else."

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PostPosted: Mon Sep 26, 2011 4:14 pm 
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Joined: Thu May 01, 2008 8:51 pm
Posts: 953
Location: France
On another related matter, I am using a Joule 2.0 with the Garmin Ant+ HRM strap. The latter is proving quite unreliable and will often report a HR of something like 50 when in reality when I'm at 160. I have used the Joule with the CycleOps Ant+ strap in the past and it has been fine.

Had anyone had similar issues and if so, were you able to resolve them?


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 26, 2011 5:31 pm 
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maquisard wrote:
On another related matter, I am using a Joule 2.0 with the Garmin Ant+ HRM strap. The latter is proving quite unreliable and will often report a HR of something like 50 when in reality when I'm at 160. I have used the Joule with the CycleOps Ant+ strap in the past and it has been fine.

Had anyone had similar issues and if so, were you able to resolve them?

I generally have good results with my Garmin HR strap and 500 unit. On occasion, maybe once out of every 4 or 5 rides it will show very high out of zone results for the first 3 or 4 miles or about 15 minutes. Don't know what causes this and it gets resolved on it's own.

_________________
"Really fast people are frustrating, but they make you faster. When you get faster, you might frustrate someone else."

2009 Trek Madone 5.5 Project One SRAM Force 16.4 lbs w/pedals and cages.
2007 Bianchi 928 Carbon Lugged- SRAM Rival-17 lbs.


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 27, 2011 2:04 pm 
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Joined: Mon Feb 19, 2007 3:44 am
Posts: 1722
Location: Canada
Maybe just the conductivity...?

I experienced that with all the HRM I had. Once the water/sweat covers the front of the strap, then the reading is fine.
I'm following this thread, since I'm shoppong for a Powertap Pro+. Trying to decide if it's a good idea to go for the Joule 2.0 (or edge 500) instead of the basic head unit.

Louis :)


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 27, 2011 2:58 pm 
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Joined: Thu Sep 02, 2010 3:29 pm
Posts: 2
Having just picked up a Powertap Pro+, I`m waiting for the new joule. Supposedly coming soon for the same price as Garmin 500.
http://www.dcrainmaker.com/search/label/Joule

Hurry up with your Pro+ purchase, the current clearout of existing models offers some of the best deals likely to be seen for ages and some places are already out of Pro+ e.g. Excel


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PostPosted: Sat Oct 01, 2011 12:56 am 
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Joined: Mon May 11, 2009 2:37 pm
Posts: 21
Location: Colorado
I think the Joules are probably really fantastic units, but as a someone who races a lot, I've been very happy with the Garmin 500. On the plus side, I like the elevation numbers, GPS and small size (if I'm trail running, snowshoeing or xc skiing off season, I just stick it in a bag in my pocket, strap on a HR strap and get good data also), plus the GPS data is decent and handy when I'm on trails or crossing unnamed peaks or ridges (no map, but I prefer the small size, and I can reference the GPS map overlay when I download later). Plus, again it's small, so it's a no brainer to leave on for races.

I've had it freeze up a twice in a year... primarily when I was pressing the lap button a lot for <1min intervals - I don't do this anymore (there's probably a way to pre-set a workout like this, but I like to keep it simple). The freeze-up was frustrating, but a 4-button power-down/power-up fixed the issue both times. Your instant power (or 3sec power) and 30sec power are usually sufficient for short interval data. If you're doing longer intervals, current and avg power for the current lap works just fine. There are at least 3 screens you can set up (I think there are more under the "workout" option, but I haven't gotten into that) and you can have a few large data boxes, or 8 small ones.

In a nutshell, it's not perfect, but it's amazingly versatile, and very useful for someone who doesn't need to be inundated with data. Realistically, it doesn't matter a hill of beans whether your TSS for one specific ride was 99 or 101, unless that's your thing. If I'm doing a set of intervals at, say 300W, I keep that in mind, accomplish them around 300W, and then file the data with all the other stuff. Reviewing the minutia mid-ride just isn't my thing, so the 500 is perfect for me.


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PostPosted: Sat Oct 01, 2011 11:36 pm 
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Joined: Thu Mar 25, 2004 4:17 am
Posts: 584
mmcnelly wrote:
I have come to the conclusion the GPS stands for "Garmin Products Suck". I went through four Edge 305's and now I'm on my second Edge 500 and either I'm the most unlucky guy on the planet, or Garmin really has not been able to bring a reliable product to the market.

Garmin as a company needs a wake up call. Unfortunately there really isn't a viable competitor to their cycling products. Therefore, while their ideas are great, their implementation sucks! And, unfortunately no one else has developed a competitive product that is actually reliable.

I'm sick and tired of spending hundreds of dollars on crap products that profess to do everything, but in reality only do little. Especially when you consider the lack of reliability.

Maybe putting GPS, HR, Speed, Cadence and Power into a single device is truly not technically feasible... I'm okay with that; just let me know what the reality is and I'll adjust accordingly.

I can only imagine that team Garmin Cervelo riders must be given a six-pac of Garmin 500's so they ultimately get t least one that works. Their product is crap and it's unfortunate that another enterprising company hasn't come up with a competitive offering and run these amateurs out of business.

BTW, not only is their 500 product unreliable junk, their online software solution is only further reinforcement that Garmin is either unaware or unable to understand and meet the needs of the cycling community. Their software solutions are an incredible joke and an insult to anyone who has spent hundreds of dollars on their products; they have been eclipsed by the likes of Training Peaks and Strava. Garmin has had more than enough time to fine-tune their software development efforts and they have failed badly. This just reinforces the fact that they either don't understand the needs of their users, or they just don't give a crap.


I totally agree with what you mention here. just check garmin forum with edge 500 issues, and how little garmin helps improving the firmware. Using an uploaded track to the device crash on long rides. Also it is all the time telling me, out of track, returned to track, when i´m just riding exactly on the same 2 meter wide road... weird!!! and you can not adjust this... it's pretty lame. implementation is really lacking, and on screen information is poor. no over/below average speed marks. no easily accesible odometer. new stem mount is so so. if you go through a tunnel, you are *f##k* up, track will not catch up until a few kilometers later. Edge 500 TWN still shows chinese characters on english language. tracks management in the device works so so... problem is the hardware is not bad, it's the software and the firmware which are lacking; bad implementetion. they should save the money they spend on their cycling team, and use it on software engineers.

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PostPosted: Mon Oct 03, 2011 2:08 pm 
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Posts: 159
I've owned the edge 305, 500, and 800. The 500 and 800 I got the same week they were released. While I've definitely had firmware issues, I've never lost a ride.


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 03, 2011 3:39 pm 
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Joined: Sun Aug 01, 2010 7:08 pm
Posts: 60
I have ridden with the Edge 500 for 15k miles, never had any problems with it. I have only lost one workout, but that was because of my fault (I let the unit sit until the battery was exhausted, instead of making a "lap" and resetting it.) Most of the headache I have had is with the peripherals.

Speed Sensor: Doesn't really work that great. Seems to have dropouts with the wheel magnet. I have noticed that when I'm going really hard (bridging or something, 1000 watts), that the speed sensor will go from 34 mph to 17 or so, like it is getting a magnet hit every two revolutions. Cadence has never been a problem.

HR Monitor: This thing sucks. I have/had the premium soft strap. It would randomly freak out in the middle of rides, reporting my HR as well into the 200's. I was doing a TT once and had an average HR of 265 BPM. It would then skew all my power based training up. Big time.

Quarq: Interface with the Quarq has been an absolute dream. It has never dropped a signal from a Quarq.

Since Quarq can do cadence, and the unit is GPS, I don't really need the Speed sensor. Since HR training (while a useful metric, doesn't compare to power), is sometimes smoke and mirrors, I don't use that either.

Garmin 500 problems: solved. Stupid peripherals.


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 04, 2011 5:50 am 
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Joined: Thu Oct 22, 2009 9:28 pm
Posts: 216
[quote="tylerjandreau"HR Monitor: This thing sucks. I have/had the premium soft strap. It would randomly freak out in the middle of rides, reporting my HR as well into the 200's. I was doing a TT once and had an average HR of 265 BPM. It would then skew all my power based training up. Big time. [/quote]


The static from your jersey / jacket causes this. I have seen it and tested it. It happens most often on descents, but other times as well.

The cheaper hard strap doesn't have this problem: sell the soft one and buy the cheap one and you will be fine again.


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 04, 2011 5:55 am 
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Joined: Thu Oct 22, 2009 9:28 pm
Posts: 216
spiffomatic wrote:
I think the Joules are probably really fantastic units, but as a someone who races a lot, I've been very happy with the Garmin 500. On the plus side, I like the elevation numbers, GPS and small size (if I'm trail running, snowshoeing or xc skiing off season, I just stick it in a bag in my pocket, strap on a HR strap and get good data also), plus the GPS data is decent and handy when I'm on trails or crossing unnamed peaks or ridges (no map, but I prefer the small size, and I can reference the GPS map overlay when I download later). Plus, again it's small, so it's a no brainer to leave on for races.

I've had it freeze up a twice in a year... primarily when I was pressing the lap button a lot for <1min intervals - I don't do this anymore (there's probably a way to pre-set a workout like this, but I like to keep it simple). The freeze-up was frustrating, but a 4-button power-down/power-up fixed the issue both times. Your instant power (or 3sec power) and 30sec power are usually sufficient for short interval data. If you're doing longer intervals, current and avg power for the current lap works just fine. There are at least 3 screens you can set up (I think there are more under the "workout" option, but I haven't gotten into that) and you can have a few large data boxes, or 8 small ones.

In a nutshell, it's not perfect, but it's amazingly versatile, and very useful for someone who doesn't need to be inundated with data. Realistically, it doesn't matter a hill of beans whether your TSS for one specific ride was 99 or 101, unless that's your thing. If I'm doing a set of intervals at, say 300W, I keep that in mind, accomplish them around 300W, and then file the data with all the other stuff. Reviewing the minutia mid-ride just isn't my thing, so the 500 is perfect for me.



spiffo - this was the same issue that I had - hitting the lap button. Say I did 5x10m intervals: by the time I hit the lap button 3 or 4 times my garmin would freeze. . but this was supposed to have been fixed in a firmware update, so try updating yours as this shouldn't happen anymore?

I don't look at TSS, but being able to review my intervals during a ride to see how close I am to the percentage drop that would cause me to see that I'm out of the suggested range for the workout per Allen / Coggan protocol, among many other things I posted originally, are the kinds of things that the Joule does that the Garmin 500 does not ;-)


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