Top10 Cycling GPS computer

Disclaimer: Our selection order of presentation does not reflect the fact that we prefer the firstone over the second one, and so on.

1. CatEye – Quick CC-RS100W

What it does: tracks distance, speed, elevation, pace indicator and time
Price: 55/$60
Review score: 10/10
Pros: Well set up and easy to read screen; simple to use; visually attractive.
Cons: No ability to record data externally; limited functionality.
Tested alongside a Garmin Edge 530 and it mirrored the more powerful unit digit for digit in terms of speed and distance accuracy. Not bad for such a simple and relatively cheap unit. It’s also easy to read at speed and the out-front position puts it neatly in the field of view. And as with all of Cateye’s simple computers, the battery life is going to be measured in years rather than hours.

If you are looking for a neat and simple cycling computer and don’t need connected features, the Cateye Quick is accurate, reliable, and best of all looks really cool.


2. Wahoo Elemnt Bolt

  • What it does: Integrates with smartphone app for turn-by-turn navigation, Bluetooth communication for text/call alerts, speed/distance/time/elevation, plus aerodynamic claims
  • Price: $229
  • Review score: 10/10
  • Pros: aerodynamic; good battery life; comes with maps
  • Cons: requires smartphone; lights don’t show in daylight

We are big fans of Wahoo’s devices for their ease of setup and bombproof software. According to Wahoo, the Elemnt Bolt’s sculpted case and out in front mount cut through the air with 50-percent less resistance than other headunits, an added bonus if marginal gains are your thing.

The data screens are all set up via a Smartphone, so if you’re still using a Nokia brick phone, this is no the computer for you. Happily, the app is very good and we found it to be really user friendly.

The readability of the mapping left a little to be desired due to the black and white screen. If the mapping function is more your thing, then the Wahoo Elemnt Roam might be more up your street.


3. Lezyne Super GPS

  • What it does: GPS. Tracks distance, speed, elevation and time, Strava live segments, ANT+ heart rate, cadence and power sensors, mapping and turbo by turn navigation, works with electronic drivetrains
  • Price: $149
  • Review score: 8/10
  • Pros: Value for money; good accompanying app
  • Cons: No mount included; navigation tough to use

The Lezyne Super GPS stands out because of its astonishing value for money. For a fraction of the cost of a Garmin, you get all the same connectivity and most of the training features.

The savings are made in the design, but the Lezyne Super GPS is perfectly functional and the black-and-white screen and buttons just serve to boost battery life. It’s not as slick as Wahoo’s but the Lezyne device can also be set up via its companion app.


4. Bryton Rider 420 E

  • What it does: GPS with speed/distance/ time etc, navigation, smart notifications, structured training
  • Price: $149
  • Review score: 8/10
  • Pros: Great value; easy to set up and use; looks good; battery life is impressive
  • Cons: Button placement

Bryton’s Rider 420 is the computer you’ll find mounted on the handlebars of the Israel Start-Up Nation team, and it’s one of the brand’s more budget-friendly options. The fully-featured head unit supports every sensor under the sun and provides advanced data metrics like normalized power and TSS.

While it doesn’t have a colour screen, it can offer turn-by-turn directions, though without a base map you are just following a black line on a blank screen. Device setup can be done on the device itself, or through the companion app, which isn’t totally intuitive but still works pretty well. Best of all, with a 35-hour battery life, it will outlast just about every other computer on the market.


5. Wahoo Elemnt Roam

  • What it does: Integrates with smartphone app for turn-by-turn navigation, Bluetooth communication for text/call alerts, speed/distance/time/elevation, structured training
  • Pros: Cheaper than its rival (Edge 830); stylish and easy to use; route-planning is intuitive.
  • Cons: Can be tricky to reroute on longer routes; battery life shorter than rivals
  • Price: $569

The Wahoo Element Roam brings what we know and love from the Bolt, with a slash of colour. Rather than turn the saturation up to 11, Wahoo has only used color where needed to bring attention or create contrast between specific things on scree; it’s particularly well used on the mapping and workout screens. Speaking of mapping, Wahoo has upgraded the base maps which now allow for automatic rerouting.

Like its less expensive stablemate the Roam is set up using the Wahoo app, and sees a similar sculpted profile that flows seamlessly into the mount — initially, Wahoo had a faulty set of mounts that went out with the early Roams, this has since been rectified.


6. Garmin Edge 530

  • What it does: GPS. Tracks distance, speed, time, elevation and heart rate and cadence with ANT+ sensors. Full navigation and smartphone connectivity, tracks FTP with power meter, compatible with Bluetooth and WiFi
  • Price: $414
  • Review score: 9/10
  • Pros: Intuitive to use; access to as much data as you could ever need; customisable thanks to Connect IQ
  • Cons: Size/tactility of buttons; lack of in-depth navigational features

The Garmin 5 series has historically been the more basic of the Edge GPS computers for those after performance-orientated data, with the more powerful Edge 8 and 10 devices the popular choice among those seeking navigation at their handlebars. However, with the Edge 530, Garmin has upped its capabilities, bringing it closer to the range-topping models available.

In fact, the only difference between the new Edge 530 and 830 is the lack of touch screen, it may leave riders wondering if they’ll ever need anything more advanced at all.


7. Garmin Edge 830

  • What it does: GPS. Tracks distance, speed, time, elevation and heart rate and cadence with ANT+ sensors. Full navigation and smartphone connectivity, tracks FTP with power meter, compatible with Bluetooth and WiFi
  • Price: $394
  • Review score: 9/10
  • Pros: Touchscreen works well; good size; good screen
  • Cons: Software still isn’t faultless

We absolutely loved using the Garmin Edge 830 and were impressed by its design and excellent touchscreen. For those reasons, it landed itself a spot on our Editor’s Choice list for 2019.

Garmin is now coalescing around a distinctively ‘Garmin’ design. The two latest devices – the Edge 830 and 530 – look almost identical, with the same black edging and bezel as the smaller Garmin Edge 130. They also have the same crisp and easy-to-read screen and layout design that we rated so highly on the smaller device.


8. Garmin Edge 1030

  • What it does: As per the older Garmin 1000, plus rider to rider messaging, preloaded Garmin Cycle Maps (and turn-by-turn navigation), battery pack option.
  • Price: $430
  • Review score: 8/10
  • Pros: Lots of metrics; fitness tracking; good screen size
  • Cons: Basemap limited for navigation

You name it and the Edge 1030 can do it, offering everything from comprehensive mapping to data analysis, all the way through to the ability to see communicate with electronic groupsets and even other Garmin Edge 1030 devices.

While it does perform better than the Edge 820, it’s a shame to see the touchscreen (and some of the related software bugs) be carried over to the 1030. Ultimately, it’s probably suited best to those who race, and the rest of us are better served with a Wahoo or the Garmin Edge 130. Garmin has also just released a 1030 Plus, which sees an improved chipset and Trailforks integration.


9. Gamin Edge 1030 Plus

What it does: The all-singing, all-dancing flagship model that’s best at everything

Price: $714

Weight: 123g

Display size: 5.8 x 11.4 x 1.9 cm

The range-topping Edge 1030 Plus extend Garmin’s top model’s capability off-road. It’s the same size as the 1030, the biggest device Garmin makes, but with its black bezel and grey case it is in line appearance-wise with the rest of the Garmin range.

Increased mapping capability is the biggest update, with the US and UK region coming as standard. It features far-improved navigation which allows turn-by-turn even off-road, clearer mapping and a much improved touchscreen that allows you to pinch and zoom the map, just like on a mobile phone.

Unusually, set-up is one of the highlights and this update also takes its cues from mobile phone tech: via Intelligent Activity Profiles, the 1030 Plus ports across the activity data from your previous Edge 830 or 1030, so no more having to program data fields and no need to ride the bike to make sure it all works properly – it’s exactly like setting up a new iPhone, with the whole process taking less than three minutes rather than half an hour. If you didn’t have another Garmin unit, it will use data from Garmin Connect. We thought this was the best update from Garmin for quite a while.


10. Timex T5K615 GPS

  • Reads ANT+ sensors for speed, cadence, HRM and power
  • GPS speed, distance and mapping
  • Customizable display
  • Upload your workout to Training Peaks
  • 18 hour re-chargeable lithium-ion battery
  • Price: $149

UPDATE FOR SMALLER BUDGETS


Here is a quick video with other choices (starts at 1’50)

Bryton Rider 15

LEZYNE Mini GPS

Mio R403 Moov

Garmin Edge 800

Replacement to Hammerhead Karoo: Coospo