Garmin 1000 – It’s a really massive bike computer×

For anyone who knows me I am always at pains to keep things as euro #PRO as possible, however the need for practicality sometimes outweighs this.  This is where the Garmin 1000 comes in, truth be told I would much rather have an SRM Power Control 8, however they aren’t out yet, not even Fabian has one.  I was surprised to notice the Garmin box didn’t contain some zip ties for my helmet and a fluro yellow Netti jacket, that’s how much disdain I had for this product.

There are a few key features that appeal to me in the Garmin 1000:

  • Calls and SMS’ showing up on the Garmin screen - I can see if my wife has called 8 times due to being locked out of the house or similar.  I have had a couple of examples where I head out for 5 hours without checking my phone and there has been some kind of minor emergency.  It is also great if you are playing hooky from work, no more reaching into your back pocket to see who is calling and if you should/need to answer.
  • Maps – I tend to ride the same routes a lot, Dandenongs, Beach Road, Albert Park Lake, Mount Pleasant Road. I want to find a few new routes via STRAVA and upload them here for some turn by turn navigation.
  • Know where you go – This is the thing where you say how far you want to ride and Garmin suggests 3 round trips for you based on other peoples activity in the area.  I won’t use this often, however I will use it when riding outside of Melbourne.  Let’s just hope it doesn’t pop me on the Autostrada or off a cliff.
  • WiFi/Bluetooth auto sync of rides – Post ride, get home, stop the device and it uploads your ride to Garmin Connect.

So how does it all work?  Well it isn’t as flawless as a SRM Power Control 7, however it isn’t too bad.  The whole SMS/Call on screen thing doesn’t work 100% of the time, in fact it works about 50% of the time. Hopefully they fix this up in future.

Setup is pretty painless, configure the screens and pair your devices.  I setup 3 screens for riding:

  1. Main Screen – All the data I currently get on my Power Control7
  2. Lap Screen – Lap averages for doing intervals
  3. Other stuff screen, ride IF, TSS, VI, Battery Levels

The whole route thing hasn’t been as easy to use as I had hoped, this is a beta feature on STRAVA and it isn’t very user friendly. I think the main use for me will be doing a ride with mates, saving the route then doing it solo at a later date without getting lost.  I had a look at the Garmin route planning software…woeful.

I am also enjoying having GPS with my data for use on STRAVA. I have kind of come full circle on this, I used to hate people knowing what riding I have been doing, hate people knowing my wattages, and hate people knowing that I just endlessly ride an ergo or laps of Albert Park Lake.  However I am getting into this whole STRAVA thing, time will tell if I go back to my old secretive ways.

The WiFi sync actually works! I was amazed.  I used to sync data between Garmin connect, STRAVA and training peaks, it works flawlessly, and it even synced all of my historical TP data to Strava. I would much rather have the device auto upload direct to STRAVA and TP, however it only uploads to Garmin connect via WiFi/Bluetooth.

Calibrating your power meter is pretty easy to do before each ride, just one screen tap and you are ready to roll, it has a control centre similar to an iPhone, however you swipe from the top of the screen downwards to access it. 

One missing feature is the ability to configure notifications, it would be good to be able to turn sound on/off for certain things as opposed to sound on or off for everything. A beep every time you start and stop moving is annoying; a beep to remind you to start the device when your ride begins is useful.  It would also be handy being able to control how long on screen notifications appear; SMS/call notifications come up for like 5 seconds then disappear.  I don’t know about you but I don’t look at my bike computer that often.

So in short, good device, does most of what it says and setup is easy.  Only downside being a constant fear of turning up on @hubbardwatch for having a massive Garmin on my handlebars.

Your mate,

Christopher Lee