We put two top end cycling computers, the Garmin Edge 830 and the Wahoo Elemnt Roam to the test

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29 COMMENTS

  1. It's interesting that I'd totally agree with the way the points are allocated on this review. However I'd easily opt for the Wahoo anyday. It's very much a product that's been designed with the KISS ('Keep it simple stupid' ) principle in mind.

  2. Can anybody else hear his inner thoughts? I am hearing the word "reluctantly" anytime he gives a point to the Garmin, also he gets his pained expression on his face like somebody's about to kick him in his balls

  3. A lot of people switched from Garmin to Wahoo. However I'm sticking with Garmin for two features which are missing on Wahoo and I love them. One is little Garmin Remote which allows me to control the device without removing my hands from handlebars and second are Ride Profiles which I adore – one for training, one for roaming through country-side and one for city riding – quite tricky to configure but I'm loving this 🙂

  4. My Garmin 1000 went pop so been deciding on replacing with 830 or roam and was heading towards keeping with Garmin as I know the format. This has confirmed that sticking to Garmin and going for 830 best option for me. Thanks

  5. Agree with other comments about Strava routes linking to the Roam, it is seamless and gives excellent turn by turn navigation both on and off road. I've never used a Garmin but did use my phone (in a case), obviously with touchscreen and got frustrated when clearing the screen from water drops or splashes of mud and changing the display. So I prefer a non-touchscreen. One thing that doesn't work well for the Roam are the upgrades which are done over WiFi via the app. It is very iffy and I've only managed one in 3 months despite there being upgrades available. There is advice on your WiFi router settings but it is unintelligible to normal people. Presumably the Garmin can be done by plugging into a computer which is what Wahoo should do.

  6. Nicely done. In this series of cycling computers Garmin has done some hardware changes along with software integration to vastly improve on previous models. Wahoo still remains king of setup.
    Maps goes to Garmin along with their connect app to get routes from the likes of RideWithGPS straight into the new series Garmin.
    But through all of that if you're not using the device for training your phone can do everything and more than dedicated GPS devices.

  7. FWIW…
    I've owned the Wahoo Elemnt Bolt. While I love the ease of setup and excellent UI, the build quality over time was nowhere near the Garmin 520. The case is made of a cheaper plastic like a toy gun is made of. Buttons are covered by a cheap rubber/plastic gasket. The first unit I owned got a fried screen when I pressed one of the three top buttons. This was after only one year of use. Wahoo eventually sent a replacement unit. The replacement unit has had some software glitches along the way, but now it no longer syncs my routes on Strava. Also, the rubber gaskets that cover the buttons have all come out, requiring me to hold them on (and keep the unit from taking on water) using electrical tape. Wahoo CS would not replace the unit. So, on 'longevity' (which most reviewers ignore), the Wahoo is no great shakes. Two units in two years is not what I expect when I shell out over $300 for a computer.

    I left Garmin for Wahoo after having so many frustrating experiences with Garmin's clunky software and their general, "let them eat cake" approach to CS and fixing software issues. OTOH, build quality was much better and I had an old 500 that lasted 6 years. Now that Garmin seems to have upped their game on software and UI (especially with the touch screen on the 830), plus, given Garmin has a much nicer color screen for navigation, I'm going back to Garmin to replace my busted Wahoo. Now I just need to decide if I want the 830 with touchscreen or the 530 with buttons.

    Ultimately, glad to see Garmin have a competitor in Wahoo. Both companies are getting better at responding to the many issues and failings of their hardware and software, plus prices are more reasonable. Win win.

  8. Dithered and dithered for ages and decided on a Garmin 530. Setting up is time consuming and frustrating. However its only to do once – well twice in my case. However once its done its done. So far so good. A lot to learn to get the best from it, but I suspect that's my fault, having moved from an edge 25. I don't think there's much in it.

  9. but touch screen doesn’t work well for bike computers. Sweaty fingers, gloves, sweat drops, dirty fingers all are like kryptonite for touch screens, not to mention these mentioned things make the screen dirty from
    being touched. Wahoo Roam does need to fix their button issue though, it was easier with the elemnt.

  10. Just my 2 cents but having had Garmin and Wahoo I would choose the Wahoo every time. Setup is incredibly easy on the Wahoo. The fact that routes automatically are added to the Wahoo means for me the Wahoo wins hands down on navigation, The battery life is far superior on the Wahoo, Garmin can claim anything they want but a year old Garmin's battery will not last half as long as when it was new. Touch screens are great for mobile phones but for a cycling computer in the rain or wearing gloves, buttons are far easier. I also completely disagree with your statement that the Garmin is better for cyclist with specific training requirements. The ability to seamlessly link apps like training peaks to the Wahoo and have planned workouts automatically display when you turn your Wahoo on, to me makes the Wahoo far better for training than being able to create plans on the head unit. Lastly, why do Garmins need to beep so much, I drive me mad in the bunch when everyone's Garmins are constantly beeping?

  11. Thank you for the great Head 2 Head comparison. As a Wahoo user, I was getting the itch to purchase a Garmin because it looked shiny & new. That said, your demonstration actually shown me I'm best sticking with my Wahoo.