Garmin Edge 1000 First Look Review

The new Garmin Edge 1000 is an additional and flagship model to the range, slotting in above the Edge 810 which continues as do the Edge 510 and Edge 200.

So far, I’ve ridden over 500km with one and have simply used the Edge 1000 as a direct replacement for my personal Edge 800 and this has already highlighted some of the key differences between these models.

Nice new packaging - Goodies lie within

Nice new packaging – Goodies lie within

The version I’m using is the top of the range performance bundle, which includes a premium heart rate monitor with a slightly redesigned strap over the version I have currently (it features a third pick-up point on the belt). This bundle also features some excellent new extras in the form of completely new speed and cadence sensors. As anyone who’s battled at times with the old GSC10 combined speed cadence sensor will know – these can be picky and annoying to get working properly and to keep working. I personally didn’t find them the most durable or reliable units.

The contents of the Performance bundle version including new extended out front mount, new sensors and HRM

The contents of the Performance bundle version including new extended out front mount, new sensors and HRM

The new sensors attach simply and easily by rubber bands to either the offside crank for the cadence sensor or with the attached rubber band in the case of the speed sensor, which then needs clipping to a wheel hub.

The new out front mount on the bike

The new out front mount on the bike

Neither new sensor has a separate magnet but each relies on accelerometers and I can already report that both are fantastically easy to use and work perfectly. They’re a great step forward. As they’re Ant+ sensors you can buy them to use with any Garmin that works with Ant+ sensors, so that’s a win for many existing owners. The down side is that they’re a bit dearer than the GSC10, retailing for around £70 but I’ve already seen them discounted fairly heavily at times on Amazon (http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B00JM6DKUA/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1634&creative=19450&creativeASIN=B00JM6DKUA&linkCode=as2&tag=gadgsleu-21 ).


As before you can configure what info you want to follow on the display in the setup

As for the unit itself, the Edge 1000 is noticeably physically larger than my Edge 800 and that’s had a lot of comment in other press coverage. The unit is slimmer though and the larger size means a bigger screen and I’m all for that as I am already finding it makes it easier to read and to see maps etc when riding. Interestingly Garmin have switch from using their own maps on the 1000 to including Open Street Maps for Europe as standard. These are great maps and I think it’s a good move as it means all Edge 1000 models come fully loaded with maps. You can run these on your Edge 800/810 and I’ve written about doing that here: http://girodilento.com/open-street-maps-garmin-first-thoughts-review/

When you switch on the Edge 1000 you’ll likely notice it works a lot faster than the older units. It obviously has a faster processor and loading routes to navigate with takes a fraction of the time compared to my old Edge 800. With my 800 I found the actual navigation along a route, I’d loaded sometimes a bit hit and miss. Some days it would give me turn by turn guidance as I’d asked, some days it wouldn’t and I could never figure out why. So far in this respect the new 1000 has been faultless – it seems much better at navigating via routes but I’ll keep testing … just in case.

For this new model Garmin have dropped the bike profiles that my old Edge 800 has, which might bother some people but to be honest, I cover per bike odometers using Strava when I upload my rides afterwards.

Speaking of uploading rides, the Edge 1000 features both wireless and Bluetooth compatibility and will automatically upload your rides to Garmin connect if you set that up. It’s a nice feature and works well and it’s just a little better again as Garmin have finally realised that lots of us want our rides uploaded to Strava. Now you can. Garmin have opened up their API to Strava, MapMyFitness and Endomondo. So now once you link your Garmin Connect account to Strava – your rides (with the 1000 and the 810) automatically sync wirelessly. This is great and seems to be working well – no need for cables and plugging your Garmin into your computer is a win. However, it just gives the date of the ride as the title and allocates the ride to your default bike choice. So some editing is required. It all seems to work quite fast. When I get home from a ride, in the time it’s taken to put my bike in my garage and walk into the house, my ride is up on Strava thanks to the wireless transfer. I like that.

Now, as a result of not having bike profiles, each time you switch on the 1000 it automatically scans for sensors as it doesn’t know which bike you’re using. I only have one set of sensors which I’ve been swapping across bikes (which is very easy thanks to the rubber band connections) but this appears to work well too. I’ve had one ride where it didn’t pick up the cadence and speed sensors automatically but I could easily “attach” them whilst I rode – it took about 10 seconds while I was riding.

The new screen features a different technology and now has a new automatic dimming feature to maximise battery life. It’s higher resolution and the colour reproduction is nicer and as a result I’m finding it more pleasant to view. Battery life seems decent, I had the unit on all day on a ride that meant being on the road for 7 hours following the mapping the whole way and there was still about 40% battery left. I think you’d get 10 hours real world battery life before you needed to start tweaking settings to extent it further. The auto-dimming is particularly good and I’m finding it’s a little feature that’s making living with the 1000 much, much nicer as it works so well.DSC00234-001

One of the things that are new to me is “Personal Records” which pops up when you’ve set a personal best (according to the 1000) after a ride. It’s been funny watching power output records popping up after a Zone 2 Wattbike session, which highlights how it only matches what you’ve done with the device – it doesn’t look at your full riding history. It’s still a nice feature – just funny when you’re a more experienced rider.

As can be the case, early adopters reported a few software issues but I’ve not experience many issues as yet and the unit lets you know when a new firmware is available.

I updated the software when the new unit was new via PC. since then it's done it via wireless and I've not needed the computer

I updated the software when the new unit was new via PC. since then it’s done it via wireless and I’ve not needed the computer

So far, I like the Edge 1000 more to live with than my 800. I’ve gone back to the 800 a couple of times just to check but for me the user experience is much better on the 1000 from these early impressions. If you’re not bothered about the bigger screen, faster speed or nicer user experience, the 810 might be the one for you as it’s a chunk cheaper. For me, though I’d be happier with the 1000 for all of those reasons. My 800 is sitting in a drawer now gathering dust and I’ve loved that device, clocking up over 15,000km with it

The Garmin Edge 1000 comes in two variations – one with the new sensors and heart rate strap for £499 and is available from a wide range of outlets including these:

Wiggle: http://tidd.ly/61951d7b

ChainReaction: http://tidd.ly/87559d01

There is also a more affordable option without the new sensors for £439 also available from a wide range of retailers including these:

Evans Cycles: http://tidd.ly/403eed9

Probikekit: http://tidd.ly/7dde568a

That’s it for my first look, I’m off to try some of the specific Edge 1000 features like live segments, sharing where you are on the road, so loved ones (or fellow riders) can know exactly where you are. I have tried to use this but internet problems at home stopped the experiment – I’ll try again though as it looks like a great feature for those of us with loved ones who’d take comfort from knowing where we are (which in fairness was launched with the 810).

If there’s anything you’d specifically like me to check for you, please leave me a comment and I’ll do my best to do that.

If you can’t wait and want a really thorough review – pop over and read this one from DC Rainmaker’s highly respected site: http://www.dcrainmaker.com/2014/06/garmin-1000-depth-review.html

Thanks for reading.