I’ve been using the Garmin Edge 500 for a couple of months but yesterday was my first use of its “course” feature so it seemed like a good time to write up a review. Partially thanks to the Garmin, I had one of the best rides since moving to Virginia Beach. I created a route using Garmin RoadTrip, converted it to a “course” using GPSies.com, and uploaded it to the unit with Garmin Training Center. About half of the 40 mile loop was in an area I’d never cycled and the “breadcrumb” navigation was great. There are, however, some areas that could use some improvement:
- Creating the route in Garmin RoadTrip (or BaseCamp) but having to use a 3rd party site to convert the GPX file to a CRS file should not be necessary. They are both Garmin formats, after all. GTC should accept a GPX file or RoadTrip and BaseCamp should export in the CRS format.
- I discovered after my ride that you can adjust the “course time” by a percentage by pressing the “Power/Light” button. It would, however, be nice to set edit the course time or average speed of the course within GTC.
- I created the course with no real regard for where I would begin and end (mostly since I didn’t, at that point, know where I was going to park). It would be nice if the Edge would ask if you wanted to set the finish to the current location (as you “entered” the course). If you rode the same course, but started from different points, you’d need to have multiple versions loaded.
- It would be nice if you could adjust the displayed data fields in the Virtual Training Partner and Map pages.
Being somewhat analytical, I obviously enjoy being able to review the heart rate, speed, cadence, elevation, and temperature data. In fact, I’m seriously considering springing for an ANT+ enabled power hub. It’s pretty amazing to consider that this type of data collection and analysis, as recent as 10 years ago, was reserved for the elite or Olympic caliber athlete.