Review: Garmin Edge 1000 GPS computer

Garmin’s relatively new Edge 1000 model has flown somewhat under the radar thanks to much of the current attention on the brand focused on their new Vector power pedals. As far as top level navigation and information devices go, users are currently spoilt for choice. Coming in at a recommended retail price of R10 599, the Edge 1000 is pricey. The question is, is it worth it?

Garmin Edge 1000 face.jpg

Garmin Edge 1000 side profile.jpg


Whats in the Box


Edge 1000
Bar / stem mount
Out front mount
Cadence sensor
Speed sensor
Heart Rate sensor and strap
USB cables
Manuals

Garmin Edge 1000 out front mount.jpg

Garmin Edge 1000 bar mount.jpg

Garmin Edge 1000 heart rate sensor strap.jpg

Garmin Edge 1000 cadence sensor.jpg

Garmin Edge speed sensor.jpg

Setup


Deciding on where to mount the device is probably the most challenging part of the initial setup. With the supplied mounts, there are 3 options available: on the bars, on the stem or out front.

Considering the current popularity of mounting devices out front and in-line with the stem, it’s nice to see that Garmin have included a mount for this in the standard package. That said, it did take some DIY to get the Edge 1000 to fit. Due to length of the device, the supplied mount did not place the Edge 1000 far enough out to avoid the stem and bolts. A slight oversight on Garmin’s part - when spending this amount of money, one would expect everything to be perfect. That said, I did find a way around this: unscrew the inner ring of the mount, turn the mount upside down and screw it back on. This raises the platform on which the device sits, enough to clear the stem. Not as neat, but it works.

Garmin Edge 1000 4.jpgThe standard out front mount fitting.
Garmin Edge 1000 3.jpgThe modified out front mount.

The out front mount works well on the road bike, but on the MTB it puts the device in an extremely vulnerable position. By using the stem mount, it’s easy to get around this, although it brings up another issue. Once again, the length of the head unit interferes with any spacers above the stem (100mm or shorter stem).

The cadence sensor attaches to the crank arm and might cause some issues on frames with already tight chainstay clearance issues. It can be put on the “outside” of the crank arm if needed as it does not use a chainstay mounted sensor to read each revolution. The speed sensor is unique in that it attaches to the hub. At first I was sceptical that it would stay in place, but my worries were completely unfounded as the sensor didn’t give a single issue. I can’t comment on how well it will hold up in winter on a mountain biking or through a river crossing but I'm sure Garmin have considered it.

Garmin Edge 1000 2.jpg
The gap between the cadence sensor on crank arm and chainstay.

In terms of pairing the device with the additional pods, it’s a very quick and basic procedure. I even managed to pair the device with my iPhone while sitting and spinning on the trainer at 5am. I think that gives a clear indication as to how easy it is. Clearer than my view of the screen at that time of the morning anyway…

On the trail


Thanks to the large, well lit and detailed display it is very easy to see how slow you are going at any given point. Even when pinning over rough singletrack it was easy to see that I needed to up the average speed to get that section's KOM. What, you don’t work that out and then go for it?

The touchscreen, while having a good, positive feel, was overly sensitive for my liking. While suffering up Franschoek pass during the heatwave in early march, I managed to change screens with some heavy drops of sweat. Not ideal when a couple of drops in quick succession take you through some menus and decide that it’s time to delete all of your ride data before you can even move your hands from the hoods… Ok, that didn’t actually happen, but it could. In theory.

The pre-programmed maps and information displayed/ recorded is up there with what you would expect from a Garmin. Despite not having sufficient time to properly test the claimed battery life on a long ride, it seems to be on par with its competition- I’m guessing that 8-10 hours would be the upper limits of what it is capable of.

An interesting feature is the addition of Garmin “segments”. Essentially, it’s like Strava, although only for those using a Garmin Edge 1000 device. It notifies you when approaching a segment so you can wind it up and stand the best chance of being crowned the King of Queen Street. As I said, it’s only for Garmin Edge users, so the field is pretty small. I didn’t really make use of the function as I feel we really don’t need another “Strava” to tell us how far off the pace we are. Beside, I’m sure that KOM was set on a scooter….


Post Ride


Once the dust has settled and it’s time to upload and review your ride data, Garmin’s Connect service is easy to use and allows you to analyse every detail of your ride. Uploading the data to the site is straightforward and I don’t feel that it warrants any more screen time than that.

Conclusion


At a recommended retail of R10 599, one would hope that the device does what it says on the box. It does. And, it is capable of a whole lot more.

But is there value in it? A relevant question, especially considering that you can get a device with the same functionality for a couple of grand less. For me, and admittedly I am bit of a snob, I found value in the way the device felt to use, the way it looked on my bike and off of it, and knowing the established and continued backup that Garmin offer.

For those looking for pure function, there are other devices out there that will fit the bill. For those looking for the function with the form, the Garmin is unmatched. As a complete, premium level device, the Edge 1000 is right at the top.

Full specification and feature list:


edge100table.png


9 Comments

Velouria, May 05 2015 10:03

Cool review Jarryd - pretty much my experience with the Edge 1000 (except for the out front bracket - I think you're doing something wrong  :) ).

 

I've managed to get 12 hours out of the Edge 1000 - two back to back 6hr rides, getting home with 5% left.

 

It is a pricey gadget, but it's not just a GPS - it's a display unit for all other ANT+ devices, and as more and more of them enter the market, I think Garmin is trying to be the de facto head unit.

 

And I have to agree about the sweat - I've found myself navigating to Estonia before (seems quite simple - a left turn here, a short right there, several thousand kilometres later you'll reach your destination).

Riaan Oosthuizen, May 05 2015 11:10

Since it launched I've had my eye on one of these and I must say if it wasn't for the R3100 saving I got from the above mentioned retail price, I would have probably not considered it. I find it very easy to use and fitted a screen guard and it has no effect on the touch screen responsiveness. What I like is the wireless upload function that connects to the internet and immediately upload your ride and also sync with the popular cycling tracking sites out there. Overall I think its a great product.

Koei, May 05 2015 02:22

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Spinnekop, May 05 2015 02:41

Awesome product!

And it looks like it will be cheaper than the PC8 from SRM

G e r h a r d Odendaal, May 06 2015 08:04

Love mine, awesome tool and is so easy to use. Also love the bigger screen and functionality of the touch screen. Uploading of training is a breeze. Out front mount could be a little "stiffer" though. The unit can easily be dislodged from the mount if you accidentally bump the GPS with your hand  - it tends to turn sideways and is then loose and can fall out. Has not happened though, just an precaution from my side.

Saano, May 06 2015 08:21

Since it launched I've had my eye on one of these and I must say if it wasn't for the R3100 saving I got from the above mentioned retail price, I would have probably not considered it. I find it very easy to use and fitted a screen guard and it has no effect on the touch screen responsiveness. What I like is the wireless upload function that connects to the internet and immediately upload your ride and also sync with the popular cycling tracking sites out there. Overall I think its a great product.

Hi Riaan.

 

What screen guard did you fit and where can we get our hands on it

nonky, May 06 2015 10:31

Looks like a great product but ZAR10,500!!!!!!!!

Spinnekop, May 06 2015 11:05

D

 

Hi Riaan.

 

What screen guard did you fit and where can we get our hands on it

Dischem sells iPhone 5 covers for R25.

Just cut to the right size.

 

Buy 2 because you are likely to mess the first one up.  ;)

Tieffels, May 06 2015 05:04

Ok, let me be that guy..

 

Does it take tracks? And if so do you have to use that terrible abomination called Basecamp?

 

Or, to confirm my suspicions, did Garmin peak with the 705 ito a adventure biking GPS?