Saturday, May 19, 2007

Product Review - Garmin Edge 205 & MotionBased.com

I don't do many product reviews, but this one needs to be written and I recommend it to all.

I got my hands on a Garmin Edge GPS System. I was excited about this mainly because of the climbing out here in the bay area. I'm not used to going up and down to the extent I do now and wanted to be able to actually see what I was doing. That was the original reason for this product.

I still really dig that I can see the profile from my ride and overlay things like Speed and Grade %'s, but it goes on from there.

Here's a very cool feature, but first an intro to MotionBased.com:
Motion Based is a social site where users can upload their ride data privately or publicly. You can search by city, ride name , username, etc... I've been out here for about a month and a half now and am starting to venture out on some larger climbs, but not having a team to ride with leads me out riding solo and finding my way.

Here's the cool feature. This morning I searched "Alpine Dam" and found a bunch of results. I picked one that started nearby and uploaded it to my Garmin unit. Once I started riding I was able to see how far I was from the starting point and as soon as I got there the Garmin beeped and showed "On Course". At that point I was able to switch it to the map mode and follow the route. It even showed where this guy would be in comparison to me on the course (happy to see he only got me on one descent when I was stuck behind a very timid driver).

Garmin and Motion Based should sponsor some local teams across the country. Give the teams one or two units to share and they can then post race and ride data to their team sites. Here's a map/elevation chart from my race in Los Gatos.

And here's Alpine Dam:

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