Garmin Varia RTL510 Marketing gimmick or really works?

Discuss light weight issues concerning road bikes & parts.
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kytyree
Posts: 720
Joined: Thu Oct 09, 2008 4:55 am
Location: US

by kytyree

I'm a convert myself, wasn't sure at first if it was really a useful item but as others have said, I don't ride without it now.

by Weenie


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ms6073
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Joined: Fri Jul 23, 2004 8:24 pm
Location: Houston, Texas

by ms6073

I need to check, but on our Edge 1030 computers, in the sensor setup for the Varia, I recall there being a slider that allows the rider to enable/disable the radar's audible tones. As for battery life, we get ~12-13 hours total riding in rural areas with light set to flash mode (2nd press of button) and light traffic - 2-3 cars over 10-minute time span.
Michael - The Anaerobic Threshold is neither...

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TonyM
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by TonyM

3Pio wrote: One scenario that i think about and it can be helpfull is winter riding with winter cap under helmet..
Good point! ImageImage

And also for older people as hearing is less accurate getting older...

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kytyree
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Location: US

by kytyree

My hearing is above average, and regularly tested, but on windy days the Varia has better range than me.

Add in things like oncoming vehicle traffic that drowns out cars coming from behind and the Varia makes a difference. Additionally it is one thing to hear a car approaching, it is another to pick out that it is actually three cars one car and then further back two more together, which the Varia can do.

RTW
in the industry
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Joined: Thu Jun 16, 2005 2:32 pm

by RTW

Descending too it is good. The phantom car behind you that you think you hear on a descent, and you glance back and there's nothing there. That doesn't happen with the Varia!

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TonyM
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by TonyM

kytyree wrote:...on windy days the Varia has better range than me.
Good point also!

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gplama
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by gplama

Best thing I've added to my bike in years. And I've added A LOT of shit to my bike in the last few years.

Anyone in AU - Pushys still have 4 of the RTL500 units at AU$150. PU-512SJUL3 might get that down to $135 with free shipping.

brianwchan
Posts: 1276
Joined: Sat Jan 01, 2005 5:12 am

by brianwchan

There's a long thread over on slowtwitch that I've posted in as well. Long story short, for $200~ it's the best bike-related investment I've ever made and my favorite product Garmin offers... something truly innovative and where no one else comes close. I could easily replace my Fenix or Edge with a competitor but the same can't be said for the Varia.

As compared to a simple mirror, it is 'active' and has way more range. Only downside for me is that in the city it's too active. Best use case is for weekend rides on emptier roads.

commendatore
Posts: 252
Joined: Mon Dec 30, 2013 1:51 am
Location: North Carolina

by commendatore

I would buy one if it were brighter. Currently I'm prioritizing being seen by using the bontrager flare R. For the form factor, I don't think you can beat the visibility.

I've ridden in groups where one or two people had the varia 510 active. I've even paired to one and let my garmin pick up the alerts. I thought it was neat, although not quite life changing.

scapewalker
Posts: 127
Joined: Mon Aug 19, 2019 9:21 am

by scapewalker

I have been using the garmin varia rtl511 and i couldn't imagine myself riding without it anymore.

My question is whether you guys know if garmin is working on an actual rear camera setup for the next generation?

asiantrick
Posts: 257
Joined: Fri Dec 04, 2015 11:18 pm
Location: the OC, CA

by asiantrick

I was never happy with the rubber band OEM mount on the varia, so I've been trying out some aftermarket mounts. This one is a winner so far: Corki Varia Mount. It will still fit a small saddle bag also.

Image

glepore
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Joined: Thu Mar 28, 2013 4:42 pm
Location: Virginia USA

by glepore

I was a skeptic. Love the thing. You can take the lane with confidence and move over for traffic. left turn? No looking back.
Best feature is you know how many vehicles are there and the closing rate-something hearing alone doesn't give you.
Yes, in an urban environment its sort of useless, but in the countryside its almost indispensible.
Cysco Ti custom Campy SR mechanical (6.9);Berk custom (5.6); Serotta Ottrott(6.8) ; Anvil Custom steel Etap;1996 Colnago Technos Record

RTW
in the industry
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Joined: Thu Jun 16, 2005 2:32 pm

by RTW

asiantrick wrote:
Wed Oct 02, 2019 5:06 pm
I was never happy with the rubber band OEM mount on the varia, so I've been trying out some aftermarket mounts. This one is a winner so far: Corki Varia Mount. It will still fit a small saddle bag also.

Image
But it costs LOADS of money. I looked at doing this, but all in it was going to cost about $50 for a mount. :shock:

moyboy
Posts: 461
Joined: Thu Aug 18, 2016 12:19 am

by moyboy

that is a clean design.

by Weenie


kevinw
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Joined: Fri Jan 25, 2019 3:49 pm

by kevinw

asiantrick wrote:
Wed Oct 02, 2019 5:06 pm
I was never happy with the rubber band OEM mount on the varia....
The original mount is far better than the new rubber one if you have a round seatpost.

https://buy.garmin.com/en-US/US/p/521461#overview

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