I cross-shopped the 830 with the new Hammerhead Karoo 2, which is lauded for its super bright, high resolution display. As gorgeous as the K2 screen is, however, I felt it had too many flaws in the everyday functionality to make it worth the investment. The Garmin 830, by comparison, has proven performance that just works. It's smaller, lighter and has an incredibly long last battery. Strava integration is seamless, and you can dial in and customize all of your data screens for different bikes and riding styles.
Many reviewers felt the 830s screen is pixelated and feels dated. While it's no iPhone, I was pleasantly surprised by the sharpness of the screen. It's plenty crisp and clear to read, especially for something I'm only glancing at during a ride. It's bright, too. In full sun I have no problem seeing the display. Virtually no glare. The touch screen is very responsive, even with my gloves on and with some light rain. And the battery is fantastic! I rode a century last weekend. The effort took around 8 hours, and the screen was on the entire time. At the end of the ride, I had more than 50% battery left. Not bad!
Gripes? Well, the menu system is a little confusing. I'm still learning all the functions, many of which are buried in sub-menus or tied to the iPhone apps in hard-to-understand ways. So don't expect to figure it out for the first time during a ride, and don't expect to fiddle with it 15 minutes before a big ride or you'll be frustrated. Be patient with it when you're not rushed and it'll start to make sense.
Overall, I'm very happy with this unit. The bundle is an excellent value. The speed, cadence and heart rate senors sync up flawlessly. And the bundle comes with three mounts (inlcuding the awesome "out front" mount), so I can use this on any of my three bikes. Garmin packed a lot into this featherweight unit.
It's been 10 years since I upgraded our bike computers. Our purchase of the 830 started with a separate purchase of the Varia taillight, which works with it's own sensor or pairs with the 830 and other Garmin devices. The radar capabilities of the taillight led us to the 830. The features of the 830 are awesome, and the ability to swipe between fields is super easy. It's pricey but well worth it. It has all of the features we'll need for many years to come!
This Garmin cycling computer is a must for every cyclist. I have only been cycling for 5 months. As a new cyclist I didn't know lots of important information such as the right cadence. It wasn't till I purchased the Garmin that I was able to understand where my cadence should be so that I could become more efficient. This computer will give you all the information you need to know and more to improve in cycling.
I have been using my Garmin Edge 820 for about six weeks, including a trip in the Canadian Rockies. I have found the Edge 820 to be very accurate in the data that it provides (speed, distance, heart rate, elapse time, course, altitude), and very reliable. The battery life is better than my Edge 800. I do not usually answer my phone or respond to messages while I am riding, but the blue tooth connection to my smart phone is very convenient in telling me who is messaging or calling me, thus allowing me to answer or respond if I need to.
I use the Edge 820 mostly for pure navigation, with little concern for training metrics.
After a rough start, I learned from fellow 820 users that when using a course developed in RideWithGPS, best to download as a TCX file, and never accept the Navigate To Start? prompt. Following these two tips, I have enjoyed a series of flawless navigation performances, including course types that used to trip up my Edge Touring, like heavy greenway content, out-n-backs and lollypop loops.
Well, the navigation has a mind of it's own. You know how to get from A to B but I guarantee that this navigation will take you to C and D first. One you realize you have to be smarter than the device you learn to accept its flaws....it's a tiny brain. My only recent gripe is that it's supposed to keep a list of your addresses you go to as Recent Finds. Since the 11.2 upgrade, my device no longer does that. Garmin support has not been too helpful so far. Another little annoyance is that it often will not remember to connect with cadence sensor and I have to do so manually. Like I said, tiny brain.
Horrible battery life compared to other models, even with most features disabled.
Touchscreen can be problematic to operate, esp. when there is precipitation.
The amount of features are amazing but after a while you start to ask yourself just how many you actually need. I found myself disabling most either out of the need for simplicity andor improving the battery.
Latest firmware upgrades corrupted the sync process (11.0 fixed finally).
In doing some research, the 500 series seems to be a better fit for me and will deliver much better battery life, i.e. it will survive 75-100 miles for a ride with juice to spare.
Sorry, Garmin, this unit was a bit underwhelming for what I paid.
I may have reviewed this already but I don't see it and now I have been using it for about a month. I agree with people that say the touch screen is not something for Garmin to be proud of. It can take several taps to get it to respond. It, therefore, is not up to date in this technology. That said, it otherwise works extremely well. I am not sure it is worth the upgrade to a so-so touchpad from the button 520 model, but it is very good. The one thing to note is that the beeper (if you are using a Garmin Varia with it) is quite faint. Use the included handlebar mount and I can't hear it at all. However, use it with a 3rd party mount that is metal and open in the back and I can hear the beep every time. Another minor problem is how long it takes for the incline percent to measure correctly. Not that important but it should respond better. Overall, despite that, very happy with it. Also, there are many display options to make it better set up for you.
I absolutely love my new Garmin 820. The pinpoint accuracy, all the available readings, the ease of setting it up and moving from one bike to the other, the Bluetooth and the map is great... just need to get used to a small map.
Moving up from my Garmin 500 to the Garmin 820 is night and day, I only have more pros than cons since I only had it only 2 months in use, but its definitely technology in the right direction.
If you're as tied into Garmin for your training needs like I am, then this is a great addition. The data and its integration with Garmin Connect and other sites is great. The only downside is the touchscreen is not that great. The 800 was better but the 800 doesn't integrate with Varia Vision
I had a 510 that worked fine but I wanted to upgrade. The upgrades were the color touch screen, improved maps, and a few minor software things. The display is good, but essentially the same size as what I had. IMHO the 1000 is too big and the 510 is too small. The 800 seemed to be Goldilocks, but for some reason Garmin didn't stick with it.
I purchased the 820 to replace my 800 with map card. It is a little smaller and I like the new features like how it links to my iPhone. It came with an out front mount which was a nice touch. I like lots of data as I helps me focus on something other than how tired I am.
I previously owned a Garmin Edge 1000. I use the computer for training rides and racing - occasionally venturing out on long exploring rides. The map on the 820, although smaller, works just as well as the 1000 ever did. Sharp resolution. And the control buttons on the 820 are much more crisp and positive. I also prefer the smaller size.
I really like this unit so far. It has a nice, compact size that blends nicely with the front of my bike, it picks up gps signals almost instantly and has been very reliable so far.
The mapping works well but don't buy this unit if you're big on mapping because it is simply too small. Go for the Edge 1000 instead.
I also have an old Edge 500 (bombproof!) and an Edge 1000. The new 820 has a longer battery life than the 1000. The navigation is of course not quite as visible, given the 820's smaller screen size, however, it still navigates well...even on dirt trails. They have improved the software, with the latest update allowing 3 different 'sensitivity' settings for the touch screen.