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10 Best Bike Computers Reviewed and Compared

last updated Oct 04, 2019
The best bike computers are for those who are interested in what they’re cycling. Using technology specific to bicycling, bike computers focus on the details so you’re getting feedback on speed, elevation, cadence, etc. Readings that would correlate more with just your cycling experience.

Whether you are looking for one that disconnects you from the “smart-life” or one that works with your smartphones, apps and activity trackers, the 10 Best Bike Computers guide has one that will fit your needs. We ranked thousands against our extensive research criteria to make sure we are offering the most current and most coveted designs that consumers are raving about.

Scroll through and use what we found to help you find what you need. We also have our FAQs section to answer some of those commonly asked questions. It's all here to get equipped with the perfect gear without added hassle.

In a Hurry? The test winner after 27 hrs of research

icon
Garmin Edge 1030
91.8/100 our score
Features
94
Advanced Features
90
Ease of Use
90
Value
93
Garmin Edge 1030
Why is it better?

Lots of features to track everything and more

Accurate and reliable GPS navigation

Detailed maps with advanced navigation features

MicroSD slot for added storage

Customizable display

In a Hurry? Editors choice:
Garmin Edge 1030
Test Winner: Garmin Edge 1030
Amazon Link
Interviewed Experts
6
Interviewed Experts
Researched Sources
18
Researched Sources
Total Readers
13k
Total Readers
Reviews Considered
15k
Reviews Considered
Hours Researching
27
Hours Researching
Products Evaluated
10
Products Evaluated
Sorting Options
Features Advanced Features Ease of Use Value By Default
Rank
PictureProduct
Name
Rating
Shops
#1
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
91.8
Features
94 %
Advanced Features
90 %
Ease of Use
90 %
Value
93 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (13.11.19)
#2
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
90.3
Features
89 %
Advanced Features
90 %
Ease of Use
92 %
Value
90 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (13.11.19)
#3
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
88.5
Features
90 %
Advanced Features
88 %
Ease of Use
88 %
Value
88 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (13.11.19)
Amazon Link
$64.99
#4
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
88.5
Features
89 %
Advanced Features
88 %
Ease of Use
88 %
Value
89 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (13.11.19)
#5
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
88.3
Features
90 %
Advanced Features
87 %
Ease of Use
88 %
Value
88 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (13.11.19)
Amazon Link
$104.99
#6
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
86.3
Features
88 %
Advanced Features
86 %
Ease of Use
87 %
Value
84 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (13.11.19)
Amazon Link
$149.99
#7
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
86
Features
87 %
Advanced Features
80 %
Ease of Use
90 %
Value
87 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (13.11.19)
#8
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
84.8
Features
86 %
Advanced Features
80 %
Ease of Use
88 %
Value
85 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (13.11.19)
#9
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
82.5
Features
75 %
Advanced Features
70 %
Ease of Use
95 %
Value
90 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (13.11.19)
#10
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
82
Features
80 %
Advanced Features
70 %
Ease of Use
89 %
Value
89 %
Price Comparison Last Updated (13.11.19)
Amazon Link
$154.99

Best Bike Computers

1. Garmin Edge 1030

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
91.8
garmin
Amazon Link
Features
94
Advanced Features
90
Ease of Use
90
Value
93
best offer for today
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Pros:

Lots of features to track everything and more

Accurate and reliable GPS navigation

Detailed maps with advanced navigation features

MicroSD slot for added storage

Customizable display

Cons:

Takes some time to set up the user profile

Planning routes takes longer than using Google Maps on a smartphone

Hard to use with certain thick gloves on

This high-performance bike computer is packed with features, is accurate, is compatible with lots of accessories and sensors, and has a long battery life. It has a color touchscreen that even works with some gloves, and it’s easy to use. Where this option shines is its amount (and quality) of features and connectivity. It essentially records every aspect of cycling with many metrics beginners wouldn’t even think of. This includes FTP and physiological measurements. One cool bonus feature includes rider-to-rider messaging. It has turn-by-turn navigation and pre-loaded routes from Strava. There is also a bundle that includes a heart rate sensor as well as provides cadence and speed stats.

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Features

The Edge 1030 is packed with features. It records current and average speed, time, watts, distance to destination and cadence. It has live tracking, weather notifications, and other smartphone notifications.

One new feature is its Training Status mode that includes recovery, VO2 max, FTP, fitness load and stress. To use the most of this feature, train for at least a week to have a base of metrics and see how much improvements are made moving forward. This allows the cyclist to monitor their performance and training to see who they need to prepare for an upcoming race, letting them know if they are training properly, or overworking.

One of its most impressive features is rider-to-rider messaging. Those also with a Garmin Edge 1030 can receive and send back a message to each other right from the computer. The device comes with a few pre-programmed replies.

It has advanced training features when using the TrainingPeaks Connect IQ app that brings workouts to the computer, and coaches through the workouts in real-time, adjusting intensive and intervals.

The computer is fully customizable to feature many different apps, widgets and data fields that the cyclist wishes to see. This includes things like weather from the free AccuWeather app so they know when rain is on the way.

It has a color touchscreen that is responsive and works much better than the Edge 820 and works with most cycling gloves. Its screen is large and easy to read, an upgrade from the Edge 820, resembling more like a smartphone. It is generally easy to navigate through the menus on this computer, although it does take time to learn where each specific setting is located. For example, GPS mode is located under “Profile” and not “Settings.”

Connectivity and Navigation

The best part of the Edge 1030 is its ability to provide directions from point of interest, addresses, saved locations, etc. without needing a smartphone connectivity to do so. This is a major upside opposed to options like the Wahoo ELEMNT Bolt. Its sensors include GPS, GLONASS, barometric altimeter, and accelerometer. Connectivity includes Wi-Fi, ANT+, and Bluetooth. It also atomically syncs to the Garmin Connect app and a handful of third-party apps.

It has base maps with the ability to store 200 favorites and waypoints. Cyclists can add maps from third-party apps like Garmin Connect or Strava. It also has “Trendline Popularity Routing,” which pulls from Garmin Connect data to provide the best routes used by the community. This feature doesn’t perform extremely well because someone’s favorite busy or hilly course may not be suited for everyone. But it is a cool bonus feature.

It has turn-by-turn navigation that is reliable and accurate. It gives alerts to warn when a sharp turn is coming or when a wrong turn is made. Its maps are very details, being the best in this category.

Durability

Although it looks a lot like a smartphone, it has a rugged construction. It has up to 20 hours of battery life, making it among the best in this category, with another 20 hours when using Garmin Charge extended battery. It has a new out-front mount, the computer itself weighs 123 grams and has a water rating of IPX-7.

2. Wahoo Elemnt Bolt

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
90.3
wahoo
Amazon Link
Features
89
Advanced Features
90
Ease of Use
92
Value
90
best offer for today
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Pros:

Packed with features, great for training

Aerodynamic design that won’t impact speed

Customizable display

ANT+ compatibility

Turn-by-turn navigation that its predecessor didn’t have

Cons:

Everything is done in accompanying app, so a smartphone is required

With Bluetooth and Wi-Fi tech, this bike computer is wireless, has automatic route uploads and downloads, and syncs data when pairs with the accompanying app—plus syncs with Strava and other third-party apps. Its display screen is in black and white, but very easy to read, with buttons to easily navigate opposed to a touchscreen. It tracks stats like heart and speed, as well as provides turn-by-turn navigation, and the consumer can even get calls and text alerts.

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Features

This bike computer’s most attractive feature is its aerodynamic design. It’s patent pending design looks great and sits well on the front of the bike without moving around or impacting speed while reducing drag. It also is loaded with lots of performance features, including customizable profiles and a customizable screen. Just use the accompanying app to set what is to be displayed, and then use the system’s two buttons on the side and three at the bottom to navigate the computer. Having buttons on the bottom is a design plus for easily accessing data mid-ride. Cyclists can also zoom in and out easily with a touch.

Of course, it displays metrics like time, distance, current, and average speed. When paired with a smartphone is also tracks heart rate and power. This is all featured on its 2.2-inch black and white display that is easy to read and well lit.

It also has advanced training features that include level mode, ERG mode, and tours and rides history mode. The KICKR Smart training control automatically changes resistance to match elevation.

Connectivity and Navigation

The ELEMNT Bolt GPS functionality for navigation, and comes with lots of preloaded routes of the U.S., Europe and more that are downloaded via Wi-Fi to the computer. The maps but aren’t as easy to read compared to the Garmin Edge 1030 because of its black and white display, but it works fine.

It is a wireless computer, automatically syncing and uploads via Wi-Fi, Bluetooth or ANT+. Because of its dual-band tech, any device or sensors can be paired.

It has live tracking capabilities so friends or a coach can know where the rider is. It leaves breadcrumb trails so that the rider can go back the way they came, as well as a “Take Me Anywhere” navigation feature where the user enters their destination, address, or point of interest and receive turn-by-turn navigation cues.

Durability

The ELEMNT Bolt weights 2.2 oz and is the same size of the Garmin 520. It has an IPX-7 waterproof rating, and can operate in temperatures from -4 to 122 degrees F. Its battery life lasts unto 15 hours.

3. Giant Neostrack

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
88.5
giant
Amazon Link
Features
90
Advanced Features
88
Ease of Use
88
Value
88
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$64.99
Pros:

Great for training

Very long battery life

Real-time Di2 gearing

FTP/LTHR protocols

Easy to read, large display

Cons:

Computer itself large

The app is not as user-friendly

This computer combines both navigation and training functions into one package. It has the ability to track speed and cadence, as well as average pace, power, and distance. It is great for both beginners, casual riders, and serious cyclists who are looking to improve their race pace and time. It has Di2 support, providing gearing ratios and combination in real-time. Consumers can also customize their workout, set intervals and sync data to Strava.

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Features

This model is the first from NeosTrack to provide both navigation and training features. It measures various aspects of the ride including speed, power, ride time, L/R power and TSS and FTP. This is a great option for serious cyclists looking for more technical tracking. In total there are 80 different functions. It has breadcrumb navigation, displays the map and turn-by-turn directions on a well-lit display. Its display is not in color but is not touchscreen. Instead, it has five buttons used to operate the computer.

One of its stand out features is the Giant Lab Train Smart feature that consists of FTP, LTHR, MAP and MHR tests that are already programmed. The user can set their targeted reputations and use intervals workouts. Keep in mind the cyclist must do this on the computer.

Connectivity and Navigation

This cycling computer uses Bluetooth, Wi-Fi and GPS tech, along with ANT+ and Di2 support. There are no base maps, but it does provide turn-by-turn navigation and this is from pre-loaded routes or when using the Plan Trip feature in the accompanying app where the user can search for a destination. The route is then sent to the computer. It has Strava support, although users might run into problems without first updating the software of the computer.

Durability

It has a unique Di2 battery level indicator on the display so the cyclist knows when to recharge. Best of all is its long battery life of up to 33 hours on a single charge.

It has its own mounting system that does out in front of the handlebar that is easy to install. However, the computer itself is a bit on the larger size and it can shake a bit when on those bumpy trails.

4. Garmin Edge 820

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
88.5
garmin
Amazon Link
Features
89
Advanced Features
88
Ease of Use
88
Value
89
best offer for today
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Pros:

Lots of features

Improves design from older models

Group tracking

16GB internal memory

Easy to use

Accurate GPS

ANT+ compatibility

Cons:

Maps less sophisticated for techies used to Google Maps

Turn-by-turn navigation can lag sometimes

This Garmin bike computer is lightweight and compact, featuring a color touch display and has built-in sensors that include a barometric altimeter, GPS, and GLONASS. It has smart features like notifications and tracks all the cycling basics including calories burned. It has interval training, an alarm when a goal is met and is compatible with Vector power meter.

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Features

Garmin made upgrades to the Edge 520 with this model, giving it a new interface and features. New features include detailed mapping and routing and the ability to use a Group Tracking feature to see where everyone in the pack is at any given time.

The Edge 820 has the capability to track and display multiple metrics of performance including VO2, calories burned and all aspects of the ride using its barometric altimeter, GPS, and GLONASS tech. It saves 100 courses with a history of up to 200 hours. This computer has training features like intervals, advanced workouts and auto lap, allow for Strava real-time segments and is compatible with an ANT+ enabled power meter for even more cycling features.

Unlike the 520, this model is touchscreen and offers a more stripped down and user-friendly interface. This means swiping and tapping instead of buttons, and the screen wasn’t as responsive as other touchscreen options when it was first released, but software updates allowed it to improve over time. It does work without a problem even with cycling gloves on.

Connectivity and Navigation

While the Edge 520 can load detailed maps, it doesn’t provide directions. This is one upgraded feature found in the Garmin Edge 820. It also has pre-loaded detailed base maps and can give directions without needing the smartphone app. The cyclist can also upload routes from Strava or Garmin Connect. An address can also be entered in, or simply search for a point of interest. The cyclist gets turn-by-turn directions that also includes distance and street names, and recalculates when missed a turn.

It uses GPS and GLONASS tech, is Bluetooth Smart and Wi-Fi enabled, and is ANT+ compatible. It has integration with Shimano Di2 electronic shifting and has connected features when pairs with a smartphone.

Durability

The Edge 820 has an IPX-7 water rating, is compact, lightweight and easy to mount. it has a battery life of up to 15 hours when in GPS training mode, but has a new and has a battery save mode to extend its life on a single charge.

5. Lezyne Micro Color

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
88.3
Lezyne Micro Color
Amazon Link
Features
90
Advanced Features
87
Ease of Use
88
Value
88
best offer for today
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Amazon Link
$104.99
Pros:

Impressive features in a small package

Color screen

ANT+ and Bluetooth Smart sensors compatibility

Mid-range price

Cons:

Buttons smaller and slightly harder to press

GPS can sometimes be inaccurate

This wireless bike computer has a color display that reports its metrics next to its associated icons. These are tracked by its built-in barometer and odometer. It has ANT+ and Bluetooth capabilities, as well as GPS and GLONASS. It is lightweight and compact and sold for a mid-range price.

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Features

Compared to the Super GPS, this bike computer is much smaller and more lightweight. However, this means a smaller display screen that can be slightly harder to read. However, this is a fair trade-off for its amount of features, compatibility, and versatility. Even still, its display is colored, and it has four buttons to operate. It is slightly less intuitive when compared to the Wahoo Fitness ELEMNT, but still better than other options. Because this is a smaller package, pressing the buttons is also a little more challenging with gloves on.

However, navigating the device its simple so there is a low learning curve for those new to bike computers. Feature-wise, Garmin computers do have more, but the Micro C has all the same features of the Super including speed (current, average max), distance, elevation (current, ascent, descent), temperature, lap, and clock. It also tracks cadence, power and heart rate when paired with Bluetooth Smart or ANT+ sensors.

Connectivity and Navigation

This computer uses GPS and GLONASS satellite data to track and provide navigation. Signal strength is generally strong, but it can be a bit off and glitchy once gaining higher elevation. With that said, it is reliable for the most part.

The Micro C GPS has live tracking, Strava segments, and the option to create or save routes. It has a breadcrumb trail feature, but no base map. Worst of all, there is no option to load detailed maps. For this feature, consider the Wahoo ELEMNT BOLT or a Garmin cycling computer. It does provide detailed maps when using its Ally V2 app to better see the location as long as there is a signal reception.

An interesting and unique navigation feature is the Take Me Anywhere mode that allows the cyclist to enter a destination and select from the three true options to take. This is done on the app and sent to the computer.

Durability

It’s fairly easy to install with its X-Lock mount but does require more force compared to Garmin mounts. It is water-resistant but doesn’t have the IPX-7 rating. Overall, it has a great amount of value for all its features and performance.

6. Lezyne Super

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
86.3
Lezyne Super
Amazon Link
Features
88
Advanced Features
86
Ease of Use
87
Value
84
best offer for today
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Amazon Link
$149.99
Pros:

Great product for a great price

Ideal for training and tracking metrics

Easy to use with gloves on

Lots of features

ANT+ compatible

Cons:

Not the easiest to master for navigation features

Does not have maps

No user profiles

This bike computer has a barometer, accelerometer and GPS features, able to track metrics like heart rate and speed which is displayed on its large backlit display. It has ANT+ and Bluetooth capabilities that result in more features like incoming texts and phone calls. It stores up to 400 hours of ride data and is a durable option available for a midrange price.

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Features

The Super GPS is the best of Lezyne’s bike computer line, equipped with a whole lot of connected features that similarly to its big brand name competitors, but for a more attractive price. It tracks and displays all the needed metrics like average power, distance (current, trip total, odometer), ride time, clock, laps, elevation (ascent, descent, current), calories, temperature, breadcrumb trail, turn-by-turn navigation, and GPS signal strength.

It has a large, backlit display that has four buttons that makes it easy to use. It is customizable and stores up to 400 hours of ride data. Its buttons are a bit sensitive to touch compared to the Garmin Edge 520 but have fewer menus and scroll options than its competitor, so using it is a whole lot more simple.

Connectivity and Navigation

This bike computer pairs with Bluetooth or ANT+ enabled monitors to also provide cadence and speed and power meters. When using Bluetooth Smart, rides are synced to the system’s accompanying app. Just keep in mind that this app is a bit tricky to navigate throughout. It does have live tracking so that others can see where the cyclist is, as well as and Strava segments, but turn-by-turn directions aren’t given when uploading a route from that app. Instead, the cyclists are given a breadcrumb line.

To get turn-by-turn, the consumer must use the company’s GPS Root website via another app on the phone, which them loads to the device. But what makes its mapping feature stand out is the user's ability to use the Lezyne Ally app to enter in any destination and the cyclists are given at least or more route options that will then be sent to the computer for turn-by-turn directions.

It does use GPS and GLONASS to provide navigation, but consumers must be patient and know their way around apps in order to really tap into its navigation system. Still, the satellite signals are reliable and work well, even in bad weather or more remote areas.

The computer also gets smartphone notifications, and data transfers can be done via a micro USB cable to the GPS Root site and Strava.

Durability

Weighing 76 grams, the Super GPS is easy to set up and mount to the bike. The computer is water-resistant but does not have an IPX-7 rating. However, it still works fine after being exposed to some water. It has a battery life of 24 hours, so it does need to be charged after a long days ride.

7. Garmin Edge 25

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
86
Garmin Edge 25
Amazon Link
Features
87
Advanced Features
80
Ease of Use
90
Value
87
best offer for today
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Pros:

Compact

Easy to use with no big frills but sophisticated and accurate tech

Auto syncs to Garmin Connect

It includes side buttons and a well-lit screen display

Cons:

Shorter battery life

Not Wi-Fi compatible

This options from Garmin is small in size but doesn’t skimp out on its features. It’s just 30g, being compact and tiny in size to easily be mounted. It still tracks and displays the time, distance, spread, elevation and more. It has GPS, Bluetooth and GLONASS tech, and syncs to the Garmin Connect app.

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Features

This is a much more toned down version of models like the Edge 1030 and Edge 820 but still offers all the main features cyclists want and need. It tracks time, distance, speed and heart rate, the later when paired with a heart rate monitor. It is compact and easy to use, with side buttons and a well-lit display. It displays a smart notification when paired with a smartphone, and is compatible with ANT+ sensors to be able to see cadence and indoor stats.

Connectivity and Navigation

The Edge 23 users GPS and GLONASS tech to enable its navigation features. This includes courses and time and distance alerts when reaching a goal, a feature all the other Garmin bike computers on this list also does. It is Bluetooth connected and is able to track elevation, a feature the Edge 520 cannot. When uses with Garmin Connect, the user can create their own course and upload to the device and start following the trail. It can save the history of up to 10 rides.

Durability

The Edge 25 is lightweight, compact, and wireless. It has a rechargeable lithium-ion battery with a short battery life of up to 8 hours. This computer also has the waterproof IPX-7 rating.

8. Garmin Edge 520

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
84.8
Garmin Edge 520
Amazon Link
Features
86
Advanced Features
80
Ease of Use
88
Value
85
best offer for today
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Pros:

Lots of features and metrics tracked

Accurate GPS

Bluetooth compatibility

Slightly longer battery life compared to other models

Cons:

Not Wi-Fi compatibility

No preloaded Garmin cycling maps

No round-trip routing

This is another of Garmin’s best bike computers, reporting cycling stats like Vo2 max and recovery time, along with functional threshold power, watts, and other cycling metrics. It has smart features like notifications and weather and has ride challenges via Strava. It has a waterproof rating of IPX-7 and a battery life of up to 15 hours.

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Features

Weight just over 2 oz, this option from Garmin has a color display, high-sensitivity receiver, and GPS, GLONASS and a barometric altimeter. That means it displays the basics such as time, distance, lap speed, and ascent. It is filled with features like customizable data pages, auto pause, interval training, and advanced workouts. It has smart notifications and weather alerts and is compatible with the Garmin Connect community, automatically syncing data to the app. When it comes to stats, it tracks Time in Zone, FTP tracking, Vo2, recovery, and cycling dynamics.

Connectivity and Navigation

This bike computer uses GPS and GLONASS tech to provide navigation and live tracking. It has base maps, waypoints, and favorite locations, but no preloaded maps. However, it is compatible with a Vector power meter, and more connected features when pairs with a smartphone.

Durability

With a battery life of up to 15 hours, the Edge 530 outperforms options like the Magellan 505. It is durable with a water-resistant rating of IPX-7. It’s lightweight, compact and easy to read.

9. CatEye Velo 7

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
82.5
CatEye Velo 7
Amazon Link
Features
75
Advanced Features
70
Ease of Use
95
Value
90
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Amazon Link
$24.95
Pros:

Great price

Great for indoor cyclists or casual road rides

Tracks just the basics with no frills, making it easy to use

Long battery life

Cons:

A wired sensor that needs to be attached via zip ties and mounting base

Doesn’t store each ride data

Not as water-resistant as other options

Don’t let this no-frills option fool you. The CatEye is reliable, performs well and is ideal for beginners who want to track their speed without spending a fortune on a computer. Cyclists can track their average speed, distance, and more, with the Velo 7. It automatically stops counting time when the consumer stops for a break. Its battery lasts up to three years, and best of all is available for an extremely affordable price.

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Features

This is probably the easiest bike computer to use because it has just one button used for its operation. This makes it a great option for those who aren’t tech savvy. Although less sophisticated than other flashier options, it still tracks and displays the basics. This includes the current speed, maximum and average speed, distance of the specific trip, overall distance, elapsed time, and has a clock. It has an auto start and stop, so just take off and start tracking. It also has a programmable odometer.

Connectivity and Navigation

While this bike computer is easy to use, it is hard to set up because it is a wired option. It does not feature GPS or other navigation functionality. It’s pretty much a basic tool to track distance, time and speed.

Durability

The Velo 7 is equipped with a lithium battery that has a life of approximately three years give or take. This makes it one of the best in the durability department since no charging is necessary. It is water-resistant but doesn’t specify its rating, so better not to test it or risk frying it.

10. Magellan 505

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
82
n 505
Amazon Link
Features
80
Advanced Features
70
Ease of Use
89
Value
89
best offer for today
Amazon Link
$154.99
Pros:

Easy to navigate a view display

Preloaded maps for exploring

Surprise Me mode so new route

Saves up to 6 user profiles

Di2 compatible

Shake to share routes with another same computer

Comes with bike mount

Cons:

12-hour battery life can be low for some

No preloaded maps outside of U.S.

System sometimes crashes

This is a user-friendly option that is easy to navigate. It has ANT+, Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and Di2 support, allowing for features like music control and text notifications. Its display features large icons that are simple to click with gloves on. It is durable, water-resistant and is sold for a mid-range price. One of its more unique features is its Surprise Me modes that suggest up to 3 different routes.

Read more

Features

This computer is equipped with sensors to track speed, cadence, heart rate and power Cyclo features. It also has over 180 ANT+ sensors with the ability to save multiple cycling profiles. It has a 3-inch color touchscreen that is easy to read even in the sun and can be used with gloves on. It has a fun Surprise Me mode that presents the rider with three different routes in ranging difficulties when looking to switch things up. It also has smart features like music control and notifications when paired with a smartphone.

Connectivity and Navigation

This computer has Bluetooth and Wi-Fi connectivity, as well as ANT_ and Di2 electric shifting systems compatibility. The rider can share a planned route wirelessly with other Magellan 505 devices by shaking the system back and forth so that the group all has the same route. It has a reliable GP, and tracks bike’s position from start to the end of the ride, with the ability to backtrack in case the consumer gets lost. The navigation tab is easy to access and view, complete with preloaded map and tracks.

Durability

This bike computer is made to last and withstand the rugged outdoor elements. It’s IPX-7 water-resistant meaning it can be submerged in 1 meter of water for up to 30 minutes, so a little rain won’t hurt it. It has a rechargeable battery that has up to 12 hours on a single charge.

Criteria Used for Evaluation

Features

In today’s “smart-wold”, there are apps and technology that can show you some of the most detailed data of any activity. Sometimes features grab all your activity and use it to hone in on your body and function. With the Best Bike Computers, they are designed to work with or without smart devices to get you the information you need about your biking.

Although the line-up has models of all levels, each one is loaded with features that give you the feedback you need as you push through the trails or streets. Before you invest in one of the best bike computers make sure you are asking yourself if what it is offering is what you are wanting.

Does it mark speed, distance, etc? How does it mount? What connectivity and navigation does it offer? Overall, you want what works best for you. To say everyone has stellar features isn't a lie but they might not be geared for your needs.

Ease of Use

This comes in handy when you are on the go. Ease of use can also apply to the mounting design. Designs differ in simplicity depending on how many features it has as well.

Some are navigation systems and have multiple screens and uses, which may have a learning curve for some. Then, there are basic analog computers that give data similar to that of a car: speed, mileage, RPM ( pedaling), etc. How easy these bike computers are to use depends on how familiar you are with the platforms.

Value

There is no reason the best bike computers should break the bank. You want to get what you pay for, however, when acquiring cycling data, it is pretty straight forward and doesn't take a lot of processes.

If you are looking for more advanced features, this is where you get into your activity trackers and higher-tech navigation systems. GPS and smart apps are usually going to add to the price but not always the value. Depending on what you are using a bike computer for usually will heighten the value though.

Our 10 Best Bike computers offer a solid variety of what we mean when we say this. Offering technology and the basics, you’ll get a better idea of what consumers are leaning toward in each design. It usually means the product works.

Other Factors to Consider

Model

There are many different types of bike computers. This includes the basic models that don’t have any GPS or navigation features, and data is not synced to smartphone apps. Instead, these just provide distance, speed, and time. This option works by using a sensor that is attached to a spoke on the front wheel and a magnet. The time it takes the magnet to pass the sensor is recorded, and thus the computer is able to tell metrics like ride time, average speed and maximum speed, as well as provide auto on and off recording.

Some options are wired and some are wireless, the latter being easier for beginners since it doesn’t need to manually be installed on the bike. Wireless options use connective technologies like Bluetooth and GPS to provide data, sync information, get smart features and provide maps. GPS is a common way to provide navigation. However, keep in mind that some GPS-enabled computers provide turn-by-turn navigation but no maps.

Effectiveness

Touchscreen vs Buttons

The design varies among cycling computers, some having buttons and other touchscreens. And the more tech-friendly option isn’t always the better one. Having a tangible button sometimes makes it easier to use the computer with cycling gloves on. Other times, going through lots of menus is quicker on touchscreens.

Color vs Black Display

Some consumers prefer color displays, but sometimes black and white displays are easier to read. But when it comes to detailed maps, color tends to the best.

Battery Life

Battery life is an extremely important bonus to buying a GPS-enabled bike computer. A fitness tracker or smartphone running a cycling tracking app might last a few hours at its best. But bike computers are designed to have a longer battery life, some lasting more than 20 hours on a single charge. This means it’s less likely to die mid-ride.

Frequently Asked Questions

q: What does a bike computer do?

a:

Also known as a cyclometer, bike computers are devices that calculate trip information and display the data acquired for you to view while riding. Most are mounted in view and offer GPS updates. Others are similar to a car dashboard, offering speed, distance, cadence, and other basic cycling data.

q: Which kind of bike computer is the most accurate?

a:

This depends on the type of data you are referring too. When you get into higher-end navigation computers, you will get more accurate and detailed information based on mapping and GPS pings. This doesn't necessarily mean basic analog and speedometer type bike computers are less accurate, it means that it has more technology.

Some of the best bike computers offer on-point accuracy with their speed, time and distance without all the bells and whistles. Sometimes even, when all that technology gets involved, you get lags on updates and other glitches. Sometimes basic is better when you just need to get down what you are doing.

However, the idea with the higher-tech navigating is to offer more detailed activity information as well as develop routines and maps. These can benefit triathlon training and when you're training for the Tour de France. We have a few of these overachievers on the lineup.

q: How accurate are Wireless Bike Computers?

a:

Accuracy is a question of use, some are some aren’t. However, when finding the best wireless bike computer designs, they are most definitely more manageable. Without all the wires and connecting, you get a device you can easily mount or swap.

They have built-in sensors and calculate their day with these. For the most part, they are proving to be just as accurate as the wired in ones and offer more convenience in the setup.

q: How do I mount a bike computer?

a:

Most bike computers come with mounts, instructions, and hardware. Most are simple engineered designs that were made to be secure and help with shock. Read the instructions, they are there to get your bike computers mounted correctly.

q: How does bike computers measure cadence?

a:

This generally requires an ANT+ compatible sensor that works with the computer to provide this metric.

Sources

  1. Rei, How to Choose Bike Computers, Outdoor Gear Website
  2. Dan Graziano, Five reasons it's time to start using a GPS bike computer, News Website
  3. Jeremy Benson & Curtis Smith, How to Choose the Best Bike Computer for Cycling, Outdoor Gear Website
  4. John Stevenson , Cycle computers — everything you need to know, Cycling Website