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Garmin Edge 530 Cycling GPS In-Depth Review

Garmin-Edge530-In-Depth-Review

Today Garmin announced three new products, the Edge 530 (this review), the Edge 830 (that review), and new dual ANT+/Bluetooth Smart Speed and Cadence sensors (that review coming up momentarily). These products effectively complete Garmin’s x30 lineup of higher-end cycling units, offering four distinct incrementing price points: Edge 130, Edge 530, Edge 830, and Edge 1030.  And more importantly, they refresh Garmin’s most popular unit – the Edge 520.

While Garmin announced the Edge 520 Plus almost exactly one year ago today, it was effectively just a minor refresh of the Edge 520 adding in mapping capability. Whereas the new Edge 530 is a substantial bump in not just performance, but also features. And in using both the Edge 530 and Edge 830 for the past month, I’d argue it might be the best bike computer Garmin’s ever made (keeping in mind a year ago I was pretty firm in not recommending the Edge 520 Plus due to performance issues).

This new unit significantly increases performance in routing/navigation, while also adding in automated slicing and dicing of a route’s climbs to give you exact distance/elevation remaining for each climb. It’s got a huge slate of mountain bike specific features, including baking in the entire world’s worth of Trailforks maps/data right into the units. Plus there’s a host of new performance metrics, alongside nutrition/hydration alerts that are generated automatically based on route/weather conditions.  But let’s not get ahead of ourselves, I detail all this stuff below.

As always, I aim to detail the good, bad, and ugly about a given device. Note that this unit is a media loaner/test device and will very shortly go back to Garmin, like all other loaners. I do not accept any money (or even permit even advertising) from any company I review. If you find this review useful, hit up the links at the end of the post to support the site.

Oh – and if you’re trying to decide whether to read the Edge 530 or Edge 830 review this morning, I can say that they are excruciatingly similar, with the only differences being found in the ‘Navigation’ section of the Edge 830 variant (since that’s the only place they differ). Or, you can just make two trips to Starbucks, man or woman up, and get reading.

What’s new:

Let’s get right into the details of what’s new. And there’s no more consolidated method to do that then the below video where I outline all the newness with quick demos of each:

But, if text is more your jam, then here’s what I’ve put together. Note that there are other tidbits that I probably haven’t accounted for here – for example in certain menus or such where tiny things may have changed, but the below consolidates everything into one cohesive list. For this listing I’m using the Edge 520 Plus as the baseline (whereas if I used the Edge 520 on-board detailed maps weren’t included there).

– Increased display size 13% from 2.3” to 2.6”
– Increased battery life from 15 to 20 hours, and to 48 hours in battery saver mode
– Significantly increased processor speed: Results in much faster route calculation (see videos)
– Maintained complete on-board turn by turn map database for your region
– Added WiFi: Used for syncing of activities/metrics/routes (not during ride)
– Added ClimbPro: Automatically shows how much distance/elevation remains for each climb on route
– Added Mountain Bike Metrics: Shows Grit, Flow, and Jump details on both unit and Garmin Connect
– Added Trailforks maps to unit: Added global Trailforks data/maps to baked-in data on unit (no downloads required)
– Added ForkSight: Automatically shows mountain bike trail options when you pause at fork in trail
– Added Heat Acclimation: Will automatically take into account heat/humidity for performance/recovery metrics
– Added Altitude Acclimation: Will automatically take into account (high) elevation for performance/recovery metrics
– Added Training Plan API support: This includes a redesigned structured workout execution page
– Added Hydration/Nutrition Smart Alerts: When using a course/route, it’ll automatically figure out how much water/calories you should be taking
– Added Hydration/Nutrition Tracking: It allows you to record this data in ride summary screens and log it on Garmin Connect
– Added Edge Battery Pack Support: You can now attach the Garmin integrated battery pack to the Edge (you can still use generic USB power too)
– Added Bluetooth Smart sensor support: You can now pair Bluetooth Smart sensors like heart rate, power, and cadence
– Added Performance Power Curve: This shows you your mean maximal power over different durations/timeframes (like many training sites)
– Added Bike Alarm Feature: Used for cafes/bathroom stops, emits loud alarm if bike is moved
– Added ‘Find my Edge’ feature: Automatically record exact GPS location on your phone if Edge is disconnected (in case unit pops off)
– Added Training Plan Weather/Gear Tips: Basically tells you to HTFU when it’s cold out
– Changed user interface bits: Tweaked user interface, which might take some people a few rides to get used to (or just myself)

Got all that? Good. Now usually I do include any ‘negative’ new things (such as features removed), but I haven’t found any downsides to the new unit yet, or anything that’s been removed. It’s fairly rare for Garmin to remove features from unit to unit, though sometimes we see unintended consequences of other additions. Either way, I haven’t found any of those yet in my riding (or asking lots of questions). Of course, that’s separate from GPS/Altimeter/etc accuracy, which I cover in a separate section below.

Garmin-Edge530-vs-Edge830

So what are the key differences to the Edge 830 you might ask (which costs $100 more)? No problem, here ya go:

– Edge 830 has a touchscreen (thankfully different than the older Edge 820 touchscreen)
– Edge 830 can do address-specific routing, whereas on the Edge 530 you can’t enter a street address
– Edge 830 has searchable points of interest database, for finding food/monuments/hotels/etc…
– Edge 830 has four less buttons than the 530, since it’s a touch screen (and also has some slight differences in user interface, since you can touch it – most easily seen in the mapping pages)

As you can see, there’s not a lot of differences. It really comes down to that touch screen, and whether or not you plan to enter specific addresses onto the device, or would instead route by just using saved routes or moving the little finish selector over a given spot (more on that in the Navigation section).

With everything new and different all outlined, let’s dive into actually using the darn thing.

Oh wait – one last thing: Got an Edge 1030 already? You’ll get almost every new feature you see above via firmware update to your Edge 1030. The notable exception being that the pre-loaded mountain bike Trailforks maps, due to licensing reasons. However, Garmin says the remaining features will show up in a firmware update over the coming months.

Size & Weight Comparisons:

Before we dive into all the details (or even the basics), let’s just do a quick size check. Here’s a disastrously big lineup of mostly current bike computers, all aligned on their base to a chunk of wood:

DSC_0133

From left to right: Garmin Edge 130, Garmin Edge 520/520Plus/820 (identical case size), Polar M460, Wahoo BOLT, Garmin 530/830 (identical case size), Wahoo ELEMNT, Wahoo ELEMNT ROAM, Hammerhead Karoo, Garmin Edge 1030, Sigma ROX 12

The same order is below as well:

DSC_0134

And then, just to zoom in on some of the more applicable units close up. Left to right: ELEMNT BOLT, Edge 530/830, ELEMNT, ELEMNT ROAM, and Hammerhead Karoo.

DSC_0135

What’s that? You want weights too?!? Ok, out with the trusty scale:

DSC_0138 DSC_0141 DSC_0139DSC_0140 DSC_0147 DSC_0148DSC_0149 DSC_0150 DSC_0142DSC_0144 DSC_0145 DSC_0146

Ok, your Brady Bunch moment is over. Now for realz, let’s get onto using it.

(Note: This comparison section was added after the Wahoo ROAM released.)

The Basics:

Garmin-Edge530-Main-Dashboard

This section is focused on basic usage of the device. If you’ve been around the Garmin Edge block a few times before, you won’t likely pick up too much new in this chunk. I do this so that I can focus on newness in the other bits. Still, there are a few things different this time around, like the user interface and some button functions. In fact, let’s start with buttons. On the Edge 530 you have two, the lap and start/pause buttons in the same frontal location as other Edge devices:

Garmin-Edge530-Front-Buttons

This still remains somewhat controversial, as it can make it difficult to access these buttons on certain lower profile mounts where they’re against the handlebars. While that’s never really been an issue for me personally, I can see the argument for sure.

Meanwhile, on the left side of the unit there’s three buttons. Two used for up/down type selections, and the other for power. Whereas the right side has two more buttons, one as an escape/back type function and the other for confirmation/OK.

Garmin-Edge530-Left-Side-Buttons Garmin-Edge530-Right-Side-Buttons

On the underside of the unit is the same quarter-turn mount as every other Garmin Edge device made in the last decade. However, it joins the Edge 1030 in having the battery charge ports, which allows you to add the Garmin Charge Battery pack to the bottom of it to extend battery life even longer (like, multiple-days crazy long).

Garmin-Edge530-Underside Garmin-Edge530-Battery-Pack

The Edge 530 and Edge 830 both get 20 hours in regular mode, which Garmin has specifically defined as having the screen on, ambient light sensor enabled, two ANT+ sensors, and Bluetooth constantly connected to phone (including even LiveTrack). Meanwhile, you can go up to 40 hours in ‘Battery Saver’ mode, which turns off the display (unless tapped) but still records GPS/sensors. It’ll automatically prompt you to go into this mode when the battery gets super low.

Once you power the unit up you’ll notice the user interface is new. Similar to before, but still new nonetheless.  You can press down to see the typical/previous menus where you’ll find Training/Navigation/History/Stats/Connect IQ Apps/Settings. Where pressing up gets you to the status pane, which includes bits like weather and sensor/GPS/backlight status:

Garmin-Edge530-MainScreen Garmin-Edge-530-StatusScreen Garmin-Edge530-DownScreen

Speaking of GPS status, the Edge 530 follows along with virtually all new Garmin devices released in 2019 and uses the Sony GPS chipsets, which have a lower battery profile than previous chipsets from MediaTek. This chipset supports base GPS, GPS+GLONASS, and GPS+GALILEO. You can configure this on a per activity profile perspective.

Activity Profiles are used to customize your settings where you might want them different for different types of riding. For example, you’d likely have a different activity profile for mountain biking than road riding. Or maybe you want a paired down activity profile for racing.  You can customize data pages here, as well as metrics like nutrition/hydration, automatic lap, Strava Segments, and various other alerts.

I personally typically just use one profile for road riding, and one for mountain biking. I’m kinda simple that way. But some people get really creative/nuanced with their activity profiles.

Note that activity profiles don’t define sensors. Those are device-wide. Instead, Garmin for a number of years now has created a sensor pool concept. You pair all sensors on all your bikes, and it automatically connects to the sensor when that sensor wakes up. It works really well, and in the case of the Edge 530 is now expanded to Bluetooth Smart sensors (to match the Edge 830/1030, a well as Garmin’s wearables).

Garmin-Edge-530-Sensors-Pairing Garmin-Edge530-Sensors-Bluetooth-Smart

This means that you can now pair the following types of sensors on the Edge 530:

Cadence (ANT+ or Bluetooth Smart)
Edge Remote (ANT+)
eBike (ANT+)
Heart Rate (ANT+ or Bluetooth Smart)
Lights (ANT+)
Indoor Trainer (ANT+ FE-C, though paired in a different spot)
Radar (ANT+)
Power Meter (ANT+ or Bluetooth Smart)
Shifting (ANT+)
Shimano Di2 (ANT)
Speed/Cadence (ANT+ or Bluetooth Smart)
Speed (ANT+ or Bluetooth Smart)
Varia Vision (ANT+)
VIRB (ANT+)

Phew, got all that? Good.

In my case I’ve paired a blend of sensors, mostly ANT+ power meters/trainers, cadence sensors, speed sensors, and both ANT+ & Bluetooth Smart heart rate straps.

Once you’re ready to ride, you’ll simply select the activity profile on the main page and then the upper right button. It’ll go off and find GPS if it hasn’t already, and then you’re good to go. If it’s an indoor profile, it won’t find GPS.

Garmin-Edge530-MainStartingPage

Once you press the lower right start button, your unit will be recording data (and showing you that data). You can press the up/down buttons to change screens (or use auto-scroll to iterate through screens automatically).

If you’ve configured Live Tracking, then your track is shared to whomever you selected, be it social media or directly to specific friends via e-mail.

2019-04-23 22.34.17 2019-04-23 22.34.13

This is also leveraged for Group Tracking, which enables you to follow friends on a given group ride, and then send quick messages to those friends mid-ride. Regrettably, I lack any friends to test this feature out.

If you want to create manual laps, you’ll use the lower left ‘lap’ button, which marks a lap and then shows you lap summary data. You can also use the lap summary page to compare lap metrics – which is ideal if doing intervals.  Finally, once done you’ll press the ‘Stop’ button on the right corner, which pauses the recording. Press it again to save it. You’ll then get ride summary data:

At that point the ride is automatically synced to your phone via Bluetooth Smart, and if within range of a saved WiFi network, then it could also upload that way as well. Once on Garmin Connect it instantly syncs to 3rd party platforms like Strava and TrainingPeaks as well.  You can view the stats of your ride on the Garmin Connect Mobile app:

Or, you can view it on Garmin Connect (desktop/web) too. Here’s one of my rides if you want to dig in further:

screencapture-connect-garmin-modern-activity-3576577811-2019-04-23-22_36_30

Last but not least, Garmin’s added a new Bike Alarm feature. This is in addition to the ‘Find my Edge’ function that I talk about within the mountain biking section. But since we just finished a ride, I’ll explain ‘Bike Alarm’, which is designed primarily for post-ride café settings, as well as quick bathroom stops. The goal being that you leave your Edge device on your bike and then if someone moves/touches it, it sounds an alarm. It uses the internal accelerometers to do so.

The setup for the feature is buried super deep in the menus. To get to it you’ll go: Down to Menu > Settings > Safety & Tracking > Bike Alarm > Set Passcode.  But once done, you don’t have to set it each time. Once you’ve set a passcode, you can access the bike alarm by just long-holding the power button:

Garmin-Edge530-Bike-Alarm-Enable  Garmin-Edge530-Bike-Alarm-Activation

At that point it’ll give you a 5-second count-down, and then also notify you on your phone that the feature is activated.  If you touch the bike, the alarm activates, which…sounds hideous (in a good way).

Garmin-Edge530-Bike-Alarm-Activated Garmin-Edge530-Bike-Alarm-Triggered

Additionally, if your phone is within range (and it probably is), you’ll get a notification there which would also show up on any smartwatches you might have on. You’ll get a notification when you arm it, when it’s triggered, and when it’s disarmed:

2019-04-23 16.23.482019-04-23 16.24.142019-04-23 16.24.37

I demo the whole thing as part of the video up above in the ‘What’s new’ section.

When I first saw that the Edge had a bike alarm feature, admittedly I thought it was pretty stupid. But now that I’ve seen how it’s implemented, it actually makes sense. There’s plenty of times when I’ve got my bike at a café roughly within line of sight, but maybe not always top of my mind. This makes it so that I’ll either hear it, or my phone/watch will notify me if someone touches my bike. I like it.

And at that point, we’ve got the basics covered and are ready to dive into all the cool newness.

Mountain Bike Features:

Garmin-Edge530-Mountain-Bike

Up till now, the most attention that Garmin has placed on mountain biking has simply been to add a generic ‘Mountain Bike’ profile, and offer you the ability to purchase a colored rubber condom for your Edge device, presumably to try and protect it when you smashed your bike into a rock face. Feature-wise though, there’s been nothing.

But this time around there’s significant focus on mountain biking, primarily within the following features:

Trailforks maps are baked into the Edge 530: This includes about 130,000 mountain bike trails, alongside trail ratings
Mountain Bike Dynamics: These metrics show how hard a trail was that you rode, as well as how well you rode it
ForkSight: This trail chooser screen automatically appears when you pause at a trail intersection
Find my Edge: While not absolute to mountain riding, this helps you find your bike computer if it flies off the mount on the trail
Trail Planning: You can ask the Edge to pick a trail of a certain rating, and it’ll find you something to ride

In addition, you can still use the previous Trailforks Connect IQ app on your Edge 530 to get routes from your Trailforks account, or search the Trailforks database.

First, let’s talk the metrics – because that’s kinda the newest thing here in terms of being totally different. There’s essentially three metrics here:

Grit: This calculates a difficulty score for each route, using elevation and GPS data. So kinda like a trail rating. If two riders ride the same exact trail, they should get the same Grit score. The higher the number the harder the course.
Flow: This is your specific rating for how well you rode the route. It’s focused on the momentum of the ride, so things like braking impact hurt your score. A lower number is a better score. Thus, two riders could ride the exact same route and get totally different Flow scores.
Jumps: This will count how many jumps, and for each jump will include distance and hang time. Additionally, during the ride you’ll get jump notifications in real-time with distance/hang time.

Looking at some of these in real-time, first we’ve got the jump metric. In my case, I suck at jumping (look, I’m a road cyclist/triathlete – you’re just lucky I managed to ride a mountain bike at all). So while I got some jumps in my rides, my ability to capture those jumps while also taking a photo was not happening. So, here’s a photo from Des that shows that:

Next, there’s the Grit and Flow scores, which you can add as data fields to your unit. Further, you can also see these as per-lap fields. So for example in downhill mountain biking if you created a lap at the top of each descent, you’d be able to see how these scores compared lap after lap.

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Afterwards, these scores show up on Garmin Connect (website). First, they actually show up on the map, color-coding your route – which is cool and something I wish Garmin did for other aspects of the map (like gradient % for road riding data).

image

Next, down below in the charts section they show up there too, also color coded:

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And finally, down in the stats section you’ve got the new Mountain Bike Dynamics, including any jumps (or, lack thereof in my case):

image

You should be able to see these on Garmin Connect Mobile as well, though my app isn’t showing them yet for some bug, however, others that I know are seeing them just fine. So this appears to be a me-specific bug. The story of my life.

Next, there’s the increased Trailforks integration. While Garmin hasn’t quite bought out Trailforks yet, I’d be really surprised if we just don’t see that happen. With the Edge 530/830 they’ve baked in all of the Trailforks trail data onto the unit itself. You will need to authorize that briefly the first time you use the unit, but it only takes a second. The existing Trailforks app is still there, since that takes care of better integration with Trailforks as a platform in terms of pulling your routes from your account and so-on.

Garmin-Edge530-TrailForksApp

The most obvious way the new Trailforks data manifests itself is a feature called ‘ForkSight’, which automatically pops up anytime you pause at an intersection of trails (or, more appropriately – a fork in the trail). It’s at this point it’ll show you the trail options and difficulty grades/distances for each one:

2019-04-13 15.33.10 HDR 2019-04-13 15.34.10

You can then select any of the options shown to get more information about that specific trail. It’s super cool in real life, and helps you figure out the implications of each option you have. That said, sometimes it can be a little confusing to figure out which trail is which if they aren’t labeled at the trailhead. But for the most part you can figure it out.

2019-04-13 15.34.21

Next, there’s ‘Find my Edge’, while not only for mountain biking, the reality is that most people will probably use it for mountain biking. This feature will instantly and automatically mark the exact GPS location where your unit disconnects from your phone (assuming the Garmin Connect Mobile app is on in the background). Then, on your phone you’ll get an alert that allows you to open up the exact GPS coordinates with the mapping app of your choice (for example, the Google Maps app):

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In addition, within the device options on Garmin Connect Mobile, it has two further options: ‘Find my Edge’ and ‘Last Known Location’.  If you select ‘Last Known Location’, it’ll open up the default mapping app on your phone and then the exact GPS coordinates it last saw your Edge devices at:2019-04-23 19.04.15 2019-04-23 16.31.36

Whereas if you select ‘Find my Edge’, it’ll try and connect to your Edge 530 and start an alarm sound. Which is basically just a constant beeper. It’s not crazy loud, but loud enough that you should be able to find it. And here’s what it looks like on the unit itself – saying ‘Edge found’:

Garmin-Edge530-Found

Note that this last little bit requires you be within Bluetooth Smart range. Outdoors that’s roughly tens of meters, whereas indoors it’s a crapshoot. Generally speaking though your GPS accuracy is within a few meters, so that gets you close enough to then use the beeper to find your Edge sitting in the bush. Roughly akin to how I found my GoPro mountain biking earlier this year.

Oh, and as for the mountain bike bundle, in case you’re looking at that, it comes with the following:

– Edge 530
– Mountain Bike Mount
– Silicone Case
– Edge Remote
– Dual ANT+/Bluetooth Smart Speed Sensor

While I’ve personally never bothered with the silicone case, if you’re looking at picking up any of the other accessories, it probably makes sense to just get the bundle price-wise at that point.

Garmin-Edge-530-Routing-Navigation

The Edge 530 contains a complete mapset for the region you bought it in (I.e. North America), which allows you to get full turn by turn navigations (with street names) to any point you drop on the map, or any route you load into it (no matter the source/platform it’s from). The main difference though between the Edge 530 and Edge 830/1030 from a navigation standpoint is that the Edge 530 doesn’t support POI’s (points of interest; like monuments or hotels) nor the ability to on the device itself type in a street address. And obviously, the Edge 830/1030 is a touchscreen whereas the Edge 530 isn’t. But other than that – it’s all the same.

Perhaps the most important feature on the entire new Edge 530/830 units is the significantly faster processor. I, alongside the entire internet have complained how darn slow Garmin’s previous Edge series processors are. Which isn’t to say I actually care about the processor specifically, but rather the end-resultant: Route calculation time. It would previously take numerous minutes for each just a short route to calculate. That was unacceptable, and a core reason why I didn’t recommend at the Edge 520 Plus at launch.

Well, it seems like Garmin has listened and yup: Super duper fast now.

Now, there are slight differences depending on what exactly you’re doing. I’ve found loading a saved route is the fastest of the bunch. So something like some 60KM routes from Strava that I’ve loaded are taking about just a few seconds depending on the locale.  Whereas picking a point a distance away and letting it come up with a brand new route takes a few more seconds (like 10-20 seconds, not minutes). That’s understandable since the first is just drawing a route, whereas the second is coming up with one.  And yet it also seems to vary based on exactly where I am. Routes in Mallorca and California were silly quick (1-5 seconds), whereas here in crazy bike route density Amsterdam the routing takes a bit longer (5-15 seconds).

So, let’s quickly go through those two modes. First is if you’ve already got a route. This can be something from Garmin Connect or a 3rd party site. It could be an individual route file you’ve downloaded, or it could be from a site like Strava via the Strava Routes Connect IQ app. In my case, I’m mostly using Strava routes (since I can use them on all my devices – acting like the Switzerland of routing). So we’ll start there, grabbing that route from the pre-loaded Strava Routes CIQ app:

Garmin-Edge530-Strava-Routes Garmin-Edge530-Strava-Route-Selected

Next, it’ll show me the route details:

Garmin-Edge530-Strava-Route-Ride Garmin-Edge530-Strava-Route-Overview

And finally, I can select to ride it. Within about 2-3 seconds, the route generation is complete and I’m ready to press start on my unit.

Garmin-Edge530-Strava-Start-Routing

Now, when out on the road, I’ll get turn by turn directions as I approach any turn. I’ve found these directions timely (unlike the Edge 520 Plus), and in plenty of time to take action on them. Again, there does seem to be some slight variances in responsiveness based on where in the world I am, but none of the differences affected my ability to have boatloads of time. Here’s two screenshots mid-ride during different rides, showing what it looks like:

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In addition, if I ignored a route, it’d automatically recalculate the route (including street names). Depending on the scenario, it’d either explain how to turn around and re-join the route, or in some cases cut a corner to catch-up down the road. I did however see one quirk in Amsterdam on a very short automatically generated route where it continued to try and go via some non-direct roads. After Garmin analyzed it they found a routing/mapping related bug that they say should be included in the next firmware update.

Note that the recalculation behavior is very different than that of a Wahoo BOLT/ELEMNT, which don’t have a street-level map on them. Thus, they just point you back (compass-style) to the route itself, rather than giving you turn by turn directions. For many folks, that’s perfectly fine, but I wanted to make that clear.  Whereas the Garmin method matches that of Hammerhead’s Karoo and Sigma’s ROX 12 in terms of proper on-street routing data.

Next, what if you wanted to go somewhere unplanned? The Edge 530 can do that as well, albeit with a few more limitations than the Edge 830/1030. On the Edge 530 you’ll select navigation, where you’ve got the option to browse a map (as well as load courses and saved locations).  When you browse the map you’ve got a small target in the middle that you can move around (note the middle of the image with the crosshairs):

Garmin-Edge530-Target-Location

In the upper right corner are three dots. These are identical to how mapping works on the Fenix series, and works surprisingly well (since it’s non-touchscreen). You press the upper right button to change between the three modes: Zoom in/out, Pan left/right, Scroll up/down.  Then you use the lower left buttons to perform that action.  You can see it in each of the photos below in the upper right corner:

Garmin-Edge530-Scroll-Map Garmin-Edge530-Pan-Map Garmin-Edge530-Zoom-Map

The goal here is to move around to the point you want to go to, and then select it. At which point you can have the Edge 530 go off and find a route to it:

Garmin-Edge530-Routed-Browsed-Location Garmin-Edge530-Map-Routing

From here, it’s business as normal just like above in terms of routing.

Finally, note that the unit in conjunction with your phone via the Garmin Connect Mobile app can also do some route planning.  You can create round-trip routes whereby it goes and creates a route of a given distance for you automatically, as well as create manual routes connecting points together.

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This new manual route creation bit is actually brand new – introduced in the last week or two (to everyone, not just Edge 530/830 peoples), and frankly, it sucks. I don’t know how it could be so bad, but it really is. Having come from the Easy Route app world, where I just tappity-tap my way through a route, the Garmin Connect Mobile experience is just super clunky and imprecise, crazily zooming in and out like a drunk kid with a camera for the first time. Yes, you can get the job done, but it’ll take you way longer.

2019-04-23 23.02.18 2019-04-23 23.02.49 2019-04-23 23.02.58

Hopefully though since it’s a brand new feature it’ll improve over time – maybe once someone buys a bulk pack of 40-grit sandpaper and goes to town on it.

Still, new app option aside – the rest of routing works great (finally). The processing time is what I’d expect from a $300 unit, and the route calculation to match it. I would like to see Garmin integrate Strava routes directly though, as I find the Strava Routes app clunky compared to Wahoo’s integrated Strava Routes capability. Also, I’d prefer to see Garmin allow easy loading of maps from other regions like Wahoo, rather than having to rely on 3rd party site downloads (or paying a bunch of cash).

Though, once you get the route/maps loaded, then Garmin’s routing engine is leagues ahead of what Wahoo has. I suppose doing it for a decade longer will get you that experience.

Finally, note that if there’s one thing I know about routing is that there are always edge cases in certain areas. In my case I’ve tested routing quite a bit in three core locations: Mallorca (Spain), Amsterdam (Netherlands), and Monterey (California, USA). This has included both on-road and off-road routes. However, there are always quirks in weird places that I might not have encountered, though for the most part the underlying mapping/routing data here should match that of the Edge 1030 – which people seem pretty happy with.

Training & Performance Metrics:

Garmin-Edge530-ClimbPro-Header

Next comes a slew of training and performance-related metrics, virtually all of which are new. And we’re going to start with ClimbPro, which is hands-down my favorite feature on the Edge 530/830 (and coming to the Edge 1030).

This feature automatically slices and dices your planned route’s climbs, and generates detailed climb charts for each climb as you ride them. The feature actually originated from the Fenix 5 Plus wearables last year, but really shines here on the larger screen of the Edge series as a cycling focused function. It requires that you have some route/course loaded, so it knows where you’re going. Once you’ve got that, you can see the list of climbs within the ClimbPro summary screen on the route planning page:

Garmin-Edge530-ClimbProListOfClimbs

Next, as you’re riding, it’ll automatically show the ClimbPro page for each climb once you enter it. Kinda like Strava Segments for climbs, minus the racing aspect. The climb page shows the distance remaining on the climb, the ascent remaining, the average grade remaining, and then two customizable fields at the bottom. By default, these are heading and elevation, but you can change them as you see fit.

Garmin-Edge530-ClimbPro1 Garmin-Edge530-ClimbPro2

In addition, the Edge will color-code the pain of the climb segments on the ClimbPro page based on gradient as seen above. These are bucketed into:

0-3%: Green
3-6%: Yellow
6-9%: Orange
9-12%: Red
12%+: Dark Painful Bloody Red

Having ridden with this feature last month on Mallorca it was super cool. Not only for major climbs like Sa Calobra, but actually for some of the smaller ones before and after it. For example, after you finish the famed Sa Calobra and continue out of that area you’ve actually still got another minor climb to do before you descend one of a few routes back to the remainder of the island. Having ClimbPro on my screen was super handy to know how much suck was left, since mentally you sorta forgot about these minor climbs you’ve still gotta do in comparison to the big one you just knocked out.

2019-04-14 10.36.29

Garmin notes that they expect to tweak the definition of a climb based on feedback over the next month or two. Specifically, whether or not something triggers a climb on ClimbPro (since this is calculated on the unit itself when a route is loaded). Obviously, there’s no international definition when it comes to what’s a cycling climb and what’s not. Still, the definition they’re using as of today is as follows:

Total value must be 3,500 or higher where: Distance of climb in meters (min 500 meters) * Gradient (min average 3%)

So, doing some samples here to help understand:

Climb A: 1,000 meters long at 4% = 1,000*4 = 4,000: Yes, qualifies as a climb
Climb B: 5,000 meters long at 2% = 5,000*2 = 10,000: No, doesn’t meet 3% threshold
Climb C: 500 meters long at 8% = 500*8 = 4,000: Yes, qualifies as a climb

Make sense? Again, simply calculate distance in meters by incline/gradient and see if it’s above 3,500. Also, ensure average gradient is 3%.  As I said above – I think it’s probably the coolest feature on the Edge 530/830.

Next, speaking of elevation, there’s two new features coupled together – heat and altitude acclimation. Both of these are actually quietly present on the Garmin MARQ series as well. The goal behind both of these are post-workout calculations tied to figuring out whether or not you’re acclimated to a given temperature or altitude. Obviously, both can significantly impact performance.  Starting with heat acclimation, the function leverages nearby weather stations. So your unit has to have connected to Garmin Connect Mobile within 3 hours of starting your ride in order to receive that weather data (it doesn’t use on-device temperature).

Then, for heat acclimation it applies a heat correction factor for rides above 71°F/22°C, using a percentage based amount from published studies (humidity is also factored into this as well). This is then shown in the training status widget. Garmin says they assume full acclimation takes a minimum of 4 days, and acclimation/adaptation to a given high temperature will automatically decay after 3 days of skipped training within that heat levels.

Garmin-Edge530-HeatAcclimation

Altitude acclimation/adaption is roughly similar (also seen above). The minimum threshold is at altitudes above 850m/2,788ft, and tops out at 4,000m/13,123ft (Garmin doesn’t calculate above that for cycling, sorry folks). Garmin says that they divide up training vs living altitudes, just as typical studies would. The company says that adaptation algorithms within the Edge 530/830 assume total adaptation after 21 days, and that adaptation is faster at the beginning of altitude exposure. Additionally, adaptation will decay within 21-28 days depending on acclimation level. Because I haven’t had any high altitude rides lately, I’m deferring you to Mr. DesFit, who has, and kindly lent me his high altitude shot (and check out his Edge 530 video, especially for more mountain bike details).

2019-04-23 23.36.31

What the feature shows is your current altitude adaptation level. In other words, if I go from living at sea level (as I do) to moving to the French Alps, each day it’ll show what my body has acclimated to. This essentially automates/charts the exact same process that many elite athletes take when preparing for races. In fact, a pro triathlete friend of mine wrote a guest post here on that very topic some 8 years ago. For the rest of us, we can just use this as a post-ride pub excuse for why we climbed so poorly on our week-long vacation in the Alps. Obviously, we weren’t acclimated.

Also of note is that if the Edge 530/830 are put into ‘sleep’ mode (as opposed to powered full off), it’ll actually do a check each night at midnight of where it is altitude wise, and account for that – just like the MARQ series watch does every night at midnight. Effectively giving you credit for sleeping at high altitude.

Next, there’s new hydration/nutrition alerts and record keeping. These alerts will appear mid-ride anytime you’ve loaded a pre-planned course/route into the Edge, and are based on your profile (gender/weight). Effectively, it’s trying to help you remember to eat and drink – a chronic problem for most longer-distance cyclists and triathletes. Or, at least me.  These alerts automatically show up seemingly based on caloric intake variables, and will give you Garmin’s recommendations for fluid and calories, impacted by the current temperature/humidity as well. Garmin did note that these are capped though to account for maximum hydration intake limits of the human body.

2019-04-19 16.46.00

In other words, they know that in some super hot/humid scenarios you could lose more hydration than you could possibly consume/absorb in the same timeframe, so they shouldn’t be giving you crazy recommendations like drinking three full bottles per hour. I haven’t hit that kinda weather yet, so it’s hard to tell for sure.

Then, afterwards you’ve got new hydration/nutrition tracking These pages are shown for any rides longer than 90 minutes, where it’ll ask you how much you drank and ate. It’s here over the last few months that I’ve realized the answer is always ‘not enough’.

Garmin-Edge530-CaloriesConsumed Garmin-Edge530-Hydration-Consumed

And yes, you can change from ounces to millimeters, as well as the exact size of your bottle (even per activity profile setting too!).  This data is then shown on Garmin Connect (but oddly not Garmin Connect Mobile):

image

In addition to the post-ride nutrition stats, there’s your total training status stats. These stats are a step above what you’ve historically gotten on the Edge series, and are in line to match that of MARQ (and a step above the Fenix 5 Plus). Note that some of these stats require a power meter (like FTP). Here’s the overview ‘My Stats’ page (though, much of this is also shown post-ride on the summary screens):

Garmin-Edge530-TrainingStatus

First, there’s Training Status, which is showing you Training Load over the last 7 days. Note that this includes non-riding activities as well, if they’ve synced from other Garmin wearable devices.

Garmin-Edge530-TrainingLoad

Next, there’s Training Load Focus, which is showing you the breakouts of your training types over the last four weeks. It then shows you in the dotted line the optimal (aka balanced) training load bucketing. Obviously, I ignore anything that’s optimal or balanced.

Garmin-Edge530-TrainingFocus

Next, there’s Recovery Time, which is load-based and includes time from other devices as well. This is telling you how many hours you should wait until your next hard workout:

Garmin-Edge530-RecoveryTime

Then there’s VO2Max and FTP, both of which are calculated (FTP calculation requires a power meter, seen above):

Garmin-Edge530-VO2Max

And finally, one of the newer metrics not seen on any other Garmin device is Power Curve. This is basically just a mean-max power graph, and loosely mirrors what we’ve had on various training platforms for more than a decade.

Garmin-Edge530-PowerCurve

The time duration is selectable as three choices – one month, three months, and twelve months. It does appear to pull in data from Garmin Connect as well, which is a good thing and shows tighter integration there than we’ve previously seen for Personal Records on other Garmin devices.

Last but not least, there’s on-device training plans. You could previously see all of this on Garmin Connect, but it wasn’t super visible on the Edge itself. Now, if you’ve got a training plan loaded (including those from TrainingPeaks and soon also TrainerRoad), those will appear here.  Once you load a workout up, you’ll get similar step by step instructions on the Edge as before, but now with a bit better overview metrics and showing exactly how that workout should look:

Garmin-Edge530-IndividualWorkout

Additionally, there’s now a new ‘Gear’ and ‘Weather’ option. The weather simply shows the weather for that day of the week that the workout is scheduled. Whereas the gear option aims to give you tips on what kind of gear you should have that day (for example, if it’s cold and miserable to bring gloves). Garmin says that they’re trying to provide tips for cyclists that may not be as experienced. The rest of us know that it’s simply better to stay indoors and Zwift instead.

Garmin-Edge530-Recommended-Gear

As usual, once you’ve completed these workouts, they’ll sync up to Garmin Connect and the various 3rd party platforms they might have come from.

Ultimately, the goal behind all these metrics is that they’re across the board with your other Garmin devices. So if you’ve got a Garmin wearable that supports these metrics (or some portion of them), then everything should match. Understanding that I’m a bit of an edge case due to how many Garmin devices I’m using at once for testing, that concept roughly pans out – though there’s still some cracks here and there where physiological data from one device doesn’t match another. Still, for the normal person that doesn’t ride with 12 devices at once, it’s nice to see some of this glue finally hardening.

GPS & Elevation Accuracy:

Garmin-Edge530-GPS-Status

There’s likely no topic that stirs as much discussion and passion as GPS accuracy.  A watch could fall apart and give you dire electrical shocks while doing so, but if it shows you on the wrong side of the road?  Oh hell no, bring on the fury of the internet!

GPS accuracy can be looked at in a number of different ways, but I prefer to look at it using a number of devices in real-world scenarios across a vast number of activities.  I use 2-6 other devices at once, trying to get a clear picture of how a given set of devices handles conditions on a certain day.  Conditions include everything from tree/building cover to weather.

Over the years I’ve continued to tweak my GPS testing methodology.  For example, for watches I try to not place two units next to each other on my wrists, as that can impact signal. If I do so, I’ll put a thin fabric spacer of about 1”/3cm between them (I didn’t do that for any workouts here).  But often I’ll simply carry other units by the straps, or attach them to the shoulder straps of my hydration backpack.  Plus, wearing multiple watches on the same wrist is well known to impact optical HR accuracy. For cycling units, I arrange them on my handlebars using standard mounts – usually one on either side of the step, often a bit separated from each other.

Next, as noted, I use just my daily training routes.  Using a single route over and over again isn’t really indicative of real-world conditions, it’s just indicative of one trail.  The workouts you see here are just my normal daily workouts.  I’ve had a fair bit of variety of terrain within the time period of testing Garmin Edge units.  This has included workouts in: Amsterdam (city, countryside) and Mallorca (mountains, ocean, countryside), California (off-road, hills, forests, seaside).

We’re gonna look at a few different rides in different parts of the world. First, we’ll start with the famed Sa Calobra in Mallorca. I rode this nearly a month ago, so while this firmware was slightly older, it still shows pretty solid GPS performance. Here is the data set compared to the Garmin MARQ watch and the Samsung Galaxy Watch Active.

image_thumb[32]

This super twisty-turny route is incredibly difficult from a GPS performance standpoint. There are rock tunnels, huge cliffs next to you, and plenty of GPS-blocking goodness to hose up units (as we see the Samsung illustrate).

DJI_0004-1_thumb

I’m going to zoom into one of the more difficult points here:

image_thumb[35]

Of course, with the trees it’s hard to see what’s going on. But I just wanted to show you first the density of trees. In fact, you can see the Samsung straight-up gave up on life half-way through this and just cut the corner entirely. So we’ll ignore it.

image_thumb[36]

The other units tracks are actually very close. There’s a few bobbles of the Garmin MARQ at one point where the cave is (the green text you see). That’s this thing:

RockWalls_thumb

But most importantly, the two Edge 530/830 units tracked through that just fine and dandy. Perhaps by skill, or perhaps by dumb luck. They did it both directions though.

Now I had a quick lunch at the bottom before heading up. GPS-wise, units were fine here. I left them recording on my bike while I ate.

image_thumb[38]

Though I did see some elevation issues here were it showed me quite a bit higher in elevation than I really was (300ft higher than the sea I was sitting next to). Garmin isn’t super clear on why this happened, though I haven’t seen it happen again. And again, that was a month ago on older firmware.

And in fact, if we look at route elevation for the next day, you’ll see the two Edge 530/830 units nail the elevation without any issues, super clean and consistent. The Samsung…is…well…yeah.

image_thumb[40]

Next we’ve got a ride in Monterey, California from two weeks ago. This was a nice coastal ride that also went through some gigantic tree forests. Plus it had a couple of rollers and a solid climb mid-way through. For this I’ve got both Edge 530/830 units, as well as the Garmin MARQ watch and the Polar Vantage V GPS watch. Here’s the high-level overview of the GPS from that set:

image_thumb[17]

We’ll go ahead and zoom into some sections, starting with early on. It’s here we see the Edge 530 is a bit offset from the rest. Why you ask? It was in my back jersey pocket. I needed to photograph the Edge 830 solo-cup:

image_thumb[19]

However, once we turned the corner I then got it on my handlebars and it was clean sailing:

image_thumb[21]

I know, it’s hard to see the lines above. But how could I not go to satellite view with scenery like that? Ok, I’ll go back to boring map view for the next ones.

Oh, back in the pocket it went for a climb to get other photos. Why bother including this you ask? Well two reason. First, in case you’re browsing the files and wondering why it went all sideways, and second, because I actually see a surprising number of people that stick GPS devices in their back pockets. This shows you what can happen.

image_thumb[23]

This is back in the forests and back on the handlebars:

image_thumb[26]

It was at least pretty consistent in that when it went into my pocket it went a bit sideways. This ride unfortunately had a lot of that, as we were filming other videos for things that were published prior to this review (and thus prior to this embargo). Though interestingly the Edge 830 seemed to handle the pocketing better than the Edge 530 on this ride. No idea why.

Here’s another section with all of them out – nice and clean. And this is actually in the trees a fair bit alongside a highway.

image_thumb[28]

As for altitude? Pretty similar overall, however the Edge 830 did seem offset about 18 meters throughout the entire ride. I suspect it got a weird initial fix which is used to then calibrate the barometer.

image_thumb[30]

As for the couple of spikes in there – I haven’t seen those on any other rides, and thus I suspect that’s due to the pocketing. I didn’t see it on numerous rides in Mallorca on legit climbs, nor any mountain bike rides elsewhere in California.

Next, we’ve got a ride I did this past weekend from Amsterdam one-way, down south through the Tulip fields. For this ride I’ve got it compared against the Polar Vantage V GPS watch, as well as actually also have the new magnetless speed sensor in fully standalone mode (meaning, it was just recording to itself). You won’t see a GPS track from the standalone sensor, but it does show us speed and distance. Here’s what things looked like in that data set:

image_thumb[1]

Ok, at a high level that’s pretty boring. Nobody does anything stupid, so all the tracks look fine from 30,000ft. Let’s zoom in a bunch to some corners and such. Note that all of these units are recording at 1-second intervals.

image_thumb[5]

Here’s a crossing of a bridge and the lead-up to it. You’ll see that the Polar Vantage V overshoots the turn the most (heading into an ice cream shop, which I suppose is a good idea), though once on the other side of the water, all of them are quite close together near the path. Note that where it says ‘Real Estate Agency’ you might think that the units cut the corner of the roadway, but in reality, that’s where the bike path goes.

The thing with analyzing road bike GPS files, is that they very rarely fail. Seriously, super rarely do units screw it up. That said, time and time again I found the Polar Vantage V off in the water, as seen here. Mind you, this is the exact same GPS chipset between these three units (all Sony, and all likely using the same chipset).

image_thumb[7]

The difference though is in the modes and power delivery. In this case I’ve got both Edge units configured for GPS+Galileo, a mode the Polar Vantage V doesn’t support. Not only that, but the Edge can deliver far more power to the Sony chipset and has more space for the antenna than a wearable.

image_thumb[9]

It’s hard to find many Edge 530/830 screw-ups in this file. The closest we get is this intersection where I turn, and we see the Edge 530/830 separate a bit on their plotted tracks, about one lane difference while crossing the bridge. There was a tall building to the right there, but that’s it.

image_thumb[11]

The second mistake is on this bend in the road, all three units undercut the corner – the Garmin’s more so than the Polar. Though again, if you scroll through the actual data set, you’ll find that the Polar cuts every corner.

image_thumb[13]

Oh, and altitude on this one? Pay attention to the scale, it’s only a shift of about 10 meters for any given file over the course of the ride. The green is the Polar Vantage V, brown the Edge 830, and purple the Edge 530. It looks like we see a bit of a variation around the 90-minute marker going over a small bridge, but again, keep in mind we’re really only talking a variance of about 5 meters at that moment. Welcome to the Netherlands.

image_thumb[15]

In any event, overall, from a GPS accuracy standpoint I’m not yet seeing anything of concern. Even in off-road conditions the tracks are essentially the same that I’ve seen from past Garmin Edge devices. While I’ve had concern about the new Sony chipset based on the implementations by other companies, those concerns don’t seem to be carrying over to the Garmin line. Or at least, the Edge lineup specifically. Again as I noted earlier this is likely more to do with the fact that Garmin has enabled additional GPS modes (Galileo), as well as simply has more power it can throw at the GPS chipset than a wearable can. Plus, bike computers have much more room for better antenna design.

(Note: All of the charts in these accuracy portions were created using the DCR Analyzer tool.  It allows you to compare power meters/trainers, heart rate, cadence, speed/pace, GPS tracks and plenty more. You can use it as well for your own gadget comparisons, more details here.)

Product Comparison:

I’ve added the Edge 530 (as well as Edge 830) into the product comparison calculator so you can see how it compares to other units on the market. To keep things simple for below, I’ve compared it against the Edge 520 Plus (previous generation), Wahoo BOLT, and Edge 830. Of course, there are plenty more units in the product comparison calculator, so you can make your own charts here as well. In the meantime, here’s how things line-up below:

Function/FeatureGarmin Edge 530Garmin Edge 520Wahoo ELEMNT BOLT
Copyright DC Rainmaker - Updated August 30th, 2019 @ 5:54 amNew Window
Price$299$229$249
Product Announcement DateApr 24th, 2019July 1st, 2015Mar 14th, 2017
Actual Availability/Shipping DateEarly May 2019July 31st, 2015Mar 14th, 2017
GPS Recording FunctionalityYesYesYes
Data TransferUSB, Bluetooth Smart, WiFiUSB & Bluetooth SmartBluetooth Smart, WiFi, USB
WaterproofingIPX7IPX7IPX7
Battery Life (GPS)20 Hours (40 in battery Saver Mode)15 hours15 hours
Recording Interval1-Second or Smart1-Second or Smart1-second
Satellite Pre-Loading via ComputerYesYesYes
Quick Satellite ReceptionYEsYesYes
AlertsAudio/VisualAudio/VisualAUDIO/VISUAL + LED's
Backlight GreatnessGreatGreatGreat
Ability to download custom apps to unit/deviceYesYesNo
Acts as daily activity monitor (steps, etc...)NoNoN/A
MusicGarmin Edge 530Garmin Edge 520Wahoo ELEMNT BOLT
Can control phone musicNoNoNo
Has music storage and playbackNoNoNo
Streaming ServicesNoNo
PaymentsGarmin Edge 530Garmin Edge 520Wahoo ELEMNT BOLT
Contactless-NFC PaymentsNo
ConnectivityGarmin Edge 530Garmin Edge 520Wahoo ELEMNT BOLT
Bluetooth Legacy (pre-4.0) to PhoneNoNoNo
Bluetooth Smart (4.0+) to Phone UploadingYesYesYes
Phone Notifications to unit (i.e. texts/calls/etc...)YesYesYes
Live Tracking (streaming location to website)YesYesYes
Group trackingYesNoYes
Emergency/SOS Message Notification (from watch to contacts)YesYesNo
Built-in cellular chip (no phone required)NoNoNo
CyclingGarmin Edge 530Garmin Edge 520Wahoo ELEMNT BOLT
Designed for cyclingYesYesYes
Power Meter CapableYEsYesYes
Power Meter Configuration/Calibration OptionsYesYesYes
Power Meter TSS/NP/IFYesYesYes
Speed/Cadence Sensor CapableYesYesYes
Strava segments live on deviceYesYesYes
Crash detectionYesYesNo
RunningGarmin Edge 530Garmin Edge 520Wahoo ELEMNT BOLT
VO2Max Estimation(CYCLING YES THOUGH)(CYCLING YES THOUGH)N/A
Recovery Advisor(CYCLING YES THOUGH)(CYCLING YES THOUGH)N/A
TriathlonGarmin Edge 530Garmin Edge 520Wahoo ELEMNT BOLT
Designed for triathlonSortaN/AN/A
WorkoutsGarmin Edge 530Garmin Edge 520Wahoo ELEMNT BOLT
Create/Follow custom workoutsYesYesYes
On-unit interval FeatureYesYesNo
Training Calendar FunctionalityYesYesNo
FunctionsGarmin Edge 530Garmin Edge 520Wahoo ELEMNT BOLT
Auto Start/StopYesYesYes
Virtual Partner FeatureYesYesNo
Virtual Racer FeatureYesYesNo
Records PR's - Personal Records (diff than history)YesYesNo
Day to day watch abilityN/AN/AShows time/date
Weather Display (live data)YesYesNo
NavigateGarmin Edge 530Garmin Edge 520Wahoo ELEMNT BOLT
Follow GPS Track (Courses/Waypoints)YesYesYes
Markers/Waypoint DirectionYesYesNo
Routable/Visual Maps (like car GPS)YesYes for maps (but not routable)Yes
Back to startYesYesYes
Impromptu Round Trip Route CreationNoNoNo (But can create one-way routes from phone app)
Download courses/routes from phone to unitYesYesYes
SensorsGarmin Edge 530Garmin Edge 520Wahoo ELEMNT BOLT
Altimeter TypeBarometricBarometricBarometric
Compass TypeGPSGPSMagnetic
Optical Heart Rate Sensor internallyNoN/AN/A
Heart Rate Strap CompatibleYesYesYes
ANT+ Heart Rate Strap CapableYEsYesYes
ANT+ Speed/Cadence CapableYEsYEsYes
ANT+ Footpod CapableNoNoNo
ANT+ Power Meter CapableYesYesYes
ANT+ Weight Scale CapableYesYesNo
ANT+ Fitness Equipment (Gym)NoNoNo
ANT+ Lighting ControlYesYesNo
ANT+ Bike Radar IntegrationYesYesYes
ANT+ Trainer Control (FE-C)YesYesYes
ANT+ Remote ControlYesYesNo
ANT+ eBike CompatibilityYesNoNo
ANT+ Muscle Oxygen (i.e. Moxy/BSX)With appsWith appsYes
ANT+ Gear Shifting (i.e. SRAM ETAP)YesYesYes
Shimano Di2 ShiftingYesYesYes
Bluetooth Smart HR Strap CapableYesNoYes
Bluetooth Smart Speed/Cadence CapableYesNoYes
Bluetooth Smart Footpod CapableNoNoYEs
Bluetooth Smart Power Meter CapableYesNoYes
Temp Recording (internal sensor)YesYesYes
Temp Recording (external sensor)NoNoNo
Compatible with Firstbeat HR toolsYesNo-
SoftwareGarmin Edge 530Garmin Edge 520Wahoo ELEMNT BOLT
PC ApplicationGarmin ExpressGarmin ExpressN/A
Web ApplicationGarmin ConnectGarmin ConnectN/A
Phone AppiOS/Android/Windows PhoneiOS/Android/Windows PhoneiOS/Android
Ability to Export SettingsNoNoNo
PurchaseGarmin Edge 530Garmin Edge 520Wahoo ELEMNT BOLT
Amazon LinkLinkLinkN/A
Clever Training - Save with the VIP programLinkLinkLink
Clever Training Europe (Save 10% with DCR10BTF)LinkLinkLink
DCRainmakerGarmin Edge 530Garmin Edge 520Wahoo ELEMNT BOLT
Review LinkLinkLinkLink

Again, remember you can make your own charts within the product comparison calculator here.

Summary:

Garmin-Edge530-Finish-Pic

As I said at the beginning – I think there’s a strong case to be made that the Edge 530 is Garmin’s best bike computer ever. Sure, the Edge 1030 has a bigger and prettier screen, and the Edge 830 has a touchscreen. But realistically – for $299 – there’s nothing even close to this on the market.  Even competitors $100 more can’t match these features. And as for the touchscreen, I kinda like the always-works button navigation.

One of the arguments for why people often choose Garmin over competitor devices is simply that Garmin has more features. Inversely, the counter-argument is that you’ll never use most of those features – so why pay for something you’ll never use. And both ring true. For example, nobody else has anything like ClimbPro – and in using it multiple times on legit climbs, it’s been freakin’ awesome. Love it. Whereas the new mountain bike features were super cool last week at Sea Otter when I was mountain biking – but now that I’m back home living on a pancake, I won’t likely mountain bike till sometime this summer. So I’m basically paying for features I rarely use.

Similarly, people often compare Wahoo’s mobile-app driven setup of data fields to Garmin’s on-device setup. Yes, it’s frustrating that I can’t configure Garmin data fields on my phone, though inversely, I like that I can tweak data fields mid-ride on my unit without having to pull out my phone. On the other side, Wahoo’s Strava Routes integration is just so much cleaner than Garmin’s Connect IQ app (which can be flaky sometimes).

Again, there are definitely nits to be made here against the Edge 530 – but I think the feature-set far outweighs those minor inconveniences. I feel like it’s taken about two years for Garmin to really react to the Wahoo BOLT, but now that they’ve done it – yikes.

With that – thanks for reading!

Found this review useful? Or just want a good deal? Here’s how:

Hopefully you found this review useful. At the end of the day, I’m an athlete just like you looking for the most detail possible on a new purchase – so my review is written from the standpoint of how I used the device. The reviews generally take a lot of hours to put together, so it’s a fair bit of work (and labor of love). As you probably noticed by looking below, I also take time to answer all the questions posted in the comments – and there’s quite a bit of detail in there as well. 

I’ve partnered with Clever Training to offer all DC Rainmaker readers exclusive benefits on all products purchased.  By joining the Clever Training VIP Program, you will earn 10% points on this item and 10% off (instantly) on thousands of other fitness products and accessories.  Points can be used on your very next purchase at Clever Training for anything site-wide.  You can read more about the details here.  By joining, you not only support the site (and all the work I do here) – but you also get to enjoy the significant partnership benefits that are just for DC Rainmaker readers.  And, since this item is more than $49, you get free 3-day (or less) US shipping as well.

Garmin Edge 530
Garmin Edge 530 (UK/European Readers – don’t forget Europe 10% discount DCR10BTF)
Garmin Edge 530 Bundles (select drop-down)
Garmin Edge Battery Pack
Garmin Speed/Cadence Sensors (new ANT+/Bluetooth Smart ones)

Additionally, you can also use Amazon to purchase the Edge 530 or accessories (though, no discount). Or, anything else you pick up on Amazon helps support the site as well (socks, laundry detergent, cowbells). If you’re outside the US, I’ve got links to all of the major individual country Amazon stores on the sidebar towards the top.

AccessoryPrice / Street PriceAmazon LinkClever Training - Save with the VIP programMore Info / Review LinkClever Training Europe (Save 10% with DCR10BTF)AvailabilityWiFi BuiltinBluetooth to PhoneRecording LightGPS builtinAltimeter builtinWater ResistantAccellerometerVideo Preview ScreenVoice ControlRecharges viaRemovable batteryRecording TimeSecondary attached batteryStorage Card TypeMaximum Card Size4K2.7K1440p1080p960p720pRecords 360* VideoAutomatic Image RotationImage StabilizationLooping RecordingsTimelapse Mode (constructs timelapse video)Travelapse/Hyperlapse ModePro Settings ModeInternal MicrophoneSupports Bluetooth MicrophonesPro mode with seperate tracksCustom ModesMegapixelsTimelapse Mode (photos on interval)Burst ModeContinuous Shooting ModeConcurrent w/video modeRecords 360* PhotoPro Settings ModeRAW photo creation supportSkiing ModeControl from sport computerANT+ Sensor ConnectivityBluetooth Sensor ConnectivityANT+ Profile TypesOverlays sport data on recordingApp platforms availableUse as remote controlVideo previewTransfer video-photos from cameraMulti-camera live control/previewLive Streaming to InternetApp for computerRemote control button/keyDiving caseMount Type USB Connector Type Micro-HDMI Composite Video Audio 3.5mm Stereo Mic
Copyright DC Rainmaker - Updated November 13th, 2019 @ 12:09 pm
Garmin HRM-DUAL$6994577
Garmin Magnetless Sensors Cadence/Speed Gen2 (Dual ANT+/Bluetooth)
Garmin VIRB Ultra 30$39964477Aug 31st, 2016YesYesYesYesYes131ft/40m within caseYesYesYesMini-USBYes2 Hours - 1080p30NoMicroSD128GB30/25/24 FPS60/50/48/30/25/24 FPS80/75/72/60/50/48/30/25/24 FPS120/100/96/90/75/72/60/50/48/30/25/24 FPS200/120 FPS240/120/60/50/30/25 FPSNoYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesNoYes12MPYesYesUP TO 60 PHOTOS/SECONDYesNoYesYes (added in firmware update)NoYesYesYesHEART RATE, SPEED, CADENCE, TEMPERATURE, POWER (+ Bluetooth OBD data)YesiOS/AndroidYesYesYesNoYesVIRB Edit (Mac/PC)YesIncludedGoPro Mount CompatibleMini-USBYesAdapter AvailableAdapter Available
Garmin Vector 3$99982236
Garmin Vector 3S$59982236
Garmin Charge (Edge Battery Pack)$129

Thanks for reading! And as always, feel free to post comments or questions in the comments section below, I’ll be happy to try and answer them as quickly as possible.

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1,074 Comments

  1. Sebastian Fainbraun

    I just got my 530 today. Took a little to get used to it but overall its awesome. The only complaint is the tactile feel of the buttons. Is mine defected or does it feel like sometimes the back button doesn’t work unless you press it in a certain way?

    • JohnK

      I have the same problem and the back button on mine completely stopped working before I got the device set up. Had to return it before I was able to try it.

    • Changren Y.

      Apparently I am not the only person with the hard to press back button. Mine has to be pressed really hard to actually activate.

    • Nicolas

      Same. Got mine today from REI in the US. The back button is basically unusable. That’ll teach me to be an early adopter: this is going back. I’m not fighting with a button mid ride for $300. This is so widespread on this forum that I’m hoping a software update would enhance, but it seems hardware related so I have little hope… I’ll probably give it two months and buy it back then. First production batch was not a winner…

  2. Changren Y.

    Just picked up my new Edge 530. Not an auspicious start. The “back” button requires a really hard press to register.

    • Changren Y.

      Also, all buttons, except the back button, register a click when pressed.

    • David Walker

      I’m another with the flaky back button. I’ve never had it not work but I really need to press hard on it about half the time. The other half it works ok. CT is sending a replacement for comparison.

    • Nic

      Same here … They had to change my brand new 530 because some buttons were flaky ..

  3. Andras

    Hi there, a theoratical wuestion.
    If there is sth wrong with first batch from button pressing perspective, will garmin replace these units in the future? Or you will have to use what you bought or send it back to the retailers meanwhile hoping fingers crossed, that it will be corrected in half a year and then you can fetch one from a local store?
    Just wandering how much trouble i just caused myself after hitting so fast the ordering button:)

    • No theory required, Garmin is already replacing buttons for people that it’s malfunctioning. I’ve seen a few folks comment to that extent.

      Given the slight surge I’ve seen of folks saying there’s issues – I just sent Garmin a note on it. Of course, as always, it’s hard to tell the exact extent of a problem since people with no button issues generally don’t note that the buttons work just fine. My rough guess here is that it may be a batch thing – but that’s just a super rough guess.

    • Chris

      You can add another to the back button issue list. I was hoping it was all in my head that the button didn’t feel as positive as all the others when pressed but this just confirms it with all the other reports. The funny thing is I decided to get the 530 with buttons to avoid all the touch screen issues that the 830 “might” have. LOL

    • Maybe it’s just like the old Apple Antennagate thing: You’re just inappropriately touching it the wrong way.

    • RE: Button pressing

      Heard back from Garmin – their mechanical team is investigating now. But, probably goes with out saying that if you’ve got a bum button, simply ring Garmin up and get the unit swapped out. Life’s to short to deal with non-clicky buttons.

    • Chris McKeown

      Would I contact Garmin or REI (where I ordered it)?

    • Chris McKeown

      Nevermind, I see above to contact Garmin

    • Chris McKeown

      Just got off the phone w/ Garmin support. Very friendly and helpful. She seemed very surprised when I told her about my “back” button issue, saying she has not heard of that being an issue. She said they’ve only received 1 owner notification of a faulty “back” button thus far. I questioned her on that, but she stood firm (of course, I don’t believe this for a second). She said the case is being investigated by the mechanical team (which I doubt they would do if there were only 1 device owner notification of an issue) and asked if they could add my name to this issue. Said the mechanical team which reach out to me if need be (said this would be unlikely) and support would reach out to me for any further steps based on the mechanical team’s findings.

      Otherwise, I’m really happy w/ this device, ha/ha.

    • Chris

      I spoke with Garmin this morning too about my back button and they said they would ship me a replacement and send me an email within the hour with this information. Its now going on 3 hours and I have yet to receive my email from Garmin on my replacement. I’ve had Garmin’s for the past 8 years with the 1030 being my last until it had issues and moved over the the Wahoo Bolt which has been rock solid for a year. I thought I would dip my toes back in the Garmin ecosystem since this new 530 has new features and a better mapping system and 6 days into my Edge 530 I’m now wondering if the Wahoo with way less features but way more stability might be the smarter choice. I even considered buying the rear radar today to go with the 530 but now second guessing everything.

    • Changren Y.

      It’s the new Garmin #Buttongate 😜

    • Changren Y.

      @Chris McKeown:

      If the Edge 530 is in stock at the REI store you plan on visiting, I think getting it replaced at REI would be quicker. If you explain the issue to them, I am quite sure the friendly REI folks would allow you to check for malfunctioning button before taking it home.

    • Brian B Theyel

      I just received my 530 today. Same issue with the back button. It takes way too much force to engage it, and even when I apply a lot it only works one out of every 3 or 4 times. I suspect that this is a widespread issue.

    • We have identified the root cause and already corrected the issue with manufacturing prior to the first field reports. We saw an unexpected interference in the back button on some units that didn’t show up in test builds. The tooling has already been modified and bad housings reworked. If you do encounter this issue on one of the early units, please contact your local Garmin product support and we will address.

    • Changren Y.

      Shawn@Garmin: Thanks for responding here! Glad you guys were able to figure this out relatively quickly.

    • Chris Cooper

      My replacement arrived today with a defective back button.

    • Changren Y.

      @Chris Cooper: I hope I’ll have better luck with my replacement. It’s really terrible customer service to ship out a replacement unit that exhibits the same exact same issue.

    • kdiff

      How about issues with other buttons? The down button doesn’t work on mine.

    • Rich Hufford

      I picked up the 530 from my local bike shop the day before yesterday. Brought it home and while setting up I noticed the “down” button had what felt like two positions, a half push and full push. I took the unit back to the shop the next day and tried the other unit they had and it had the exact same issue with the down button so got a refund. I was converting back to Garmin from Wahoo but this is a huge quality control issue that is giving me pause. I am at minimum going to wait a few months to see how things shake out.

    • Jiri

      Bought the Edge 530 in the UK (Clever Training UK). Defective back button. Clever Training does not exchange the unit. Garmin UK suggests to have it replaced with Garmin.cz (Czech Rep. – my residence). Garmin.cz says they don´t have it in stock.
      Bottom line – Garmin has my (not defective) money, I am stuck with their faulty product with the season being in full swing.
      What next?

    • Hi Jiri-

      You’ve essentially got two options at this point:

      A) You can return it to Clever Training UK, but I don’t think they have additional stock at this moment for support swaps
      B) You can go back to Garmin CZ support and force their hand a bit. In most cases they can order support swap stocks from Garmin UK and then get your unit swapped out

      I agree, Garmin support should absolutely have stock of products set aside for current customers, which should always take priority over customers that are still in the queue for new units. Generally that happens fine in the major support hubs, but I could see scenarios where Garmin CZ may simply be out of support stock.

    • Hello Jiri,

      We have one of our team members working to get in touch with you to get your device replaced. Thank you for the communication and apologies for the delay.

  4. Sebastian Fainbraun

    Spoke with Garmin – entire product is going back and getting a replacement.

    Other than the button issue, loving the new unit. Definitely takes some getting used to but once you do, its pretty good. I have to say that they screen set up has gotten a lot easier – still not sure why you cant do it via app – but now you can mass select fields and trade places or exchange them – its pretty clever.

    • Chris McKeown

      Agree

    • Todd

      Used mine for the 1st time last night and I agree as well, great unit but the dang back button is an issue!!

      So will you be without a unit until it’s fixed or replaced? Not sure I can be without a unit during peak training time. LOL

    • Changren Y.

      @Todd:

      Just got off the chat with Garmin support. They are aware of the button issue affecting quite a number of users. I asked if it was possible for the replacement unit be checked for malfunctioning button before being shipped to me. I was told because the Edge 530 is so new, they would create a special case for me to validate all the buttons are functioning before shipping it to me. I don’t know if they are doing this to everyone who’s getting a replacement Edge 530 or if this is something you have to ask for.

      I was offered two replacement options: The first option is to ship your faulty device back and then wait for them to ship the replacement back to you. That may take up to two weeks. The second one – the one I picked – is what they called the “immediate ship” option. They put a charge on your credit card while they ship you the replacement unit. When they receive your faulty Edge 530, they would refund the charge on your credit card.

    • Todd

      @ Changren:

      Thank you! I just spoke with Garmin as well and picked the same option as you. I didn’t mention the special case senario so I’ll just have to keep my fingers crossed!!

      Thanks again for the info!

    • Doug Adams

      Can I ask if you’re in the UK or US? I’ve just spoken to UK technical support and they didn’t give any return option, just a return to retailer. I wonder if it’s worth trying again.

    • Sebastian Fainbraun

      I’m in the US. They are sending me a new unit but unfortunately doesn’t seem like it will be in stock for a few weeks. I figure everything will be sorted by then. For now I will use my 945.

    • Sebastian Fainbraun

      I spoke to soon. Replacement shipped same day. I hope this one has no issues.

    • Chris McKeown

      Chose the same return option. Excited to have that option available so I can keep using my 530, lone defective button or not.

  5. Jamie

    Does the 530 have the capability to change the X & Y sizing on the elevation profile screen? My 820 let me do it but I can’t find how or if I can change it on the 530.

    • Changren Y.

      @Jamie:

      It was not possible to adjust the scale in the elevation profile screen in the non-touchscreen Edge 520 and it does not appear to be possible in the Edge 530 as well. It would be nice if Garmin could implement the same zoom in/out functionality in the map/navigation screen to the elevation profile screen as well.

    • Vincent Chang

      Isn’t it why ClimbPro to be designed for? To compensate the inability to adjust scale on Edge 520. Just my guessing.

    • Jamie

      @changren

      Thanks for the reply and confirmation. I really liked being able to change the X & Y on that screen. Oh well. I got a very early unit last week and fortunately all of my buttons seem to be working well.

  6. Tizzledk

    Latest from Clever training UK:”We are expecting to receive more units of the Garmin Edge 530 in to our warehouse this week and each week thereafter. We are looking to fulfil all back orders by the end of May and until your order is dispatched, we will be in touch on a weekly basis to keep you updated.

    If you have any further queries, please do not hesitate to contact us.”

    Light at the end of the tunnel.

  7. Changren Y.

    Ray, perhaps you are aware of this. On the Safari browser (iOS 12.3), not all the comments – especially the recent ones – show up in the mobile version of this post. The missing comments do show up when I switched to the desktop version.

  8. Seby

    got an email from CT 🙂
    _____________________________________________________
    Thank you for your patience and we are happy to announce that the Garmin Edge 530 GPS Cycling Computer units have finally started to arrive into our UK warehouse.

    Some units have arrived this week and we will be receiving the units as well next week.

    The bulk of the units are scheduled to be arriving in the last few business days in May as well and going forward we will be sending out notifications every Wednesday evening to update you on your incoming order.

    As a reminder that on the day that your unit ships a shipping and tracking email will be generated at that time to provide you with the ETA.

    If you have any current or further questions or concerns please contact the UK Clever Training Team at:

    CUSTOMER SERVICE
    (01772)331852
    sales@clevertraining.co.uk

    Kind Regards,

    Paul O’Rourke

  9. I have had my Edge 530 for a few days now, 2 outside rides and during both rides the unit did a restart all on its own, has anyone else had this issue? And is there anyway to adjust the data that is shown on the Climbing screen? would like to add power/lap power to that screen?

    Also, been using a 520 for so long and mapping with courses via bread crumb trail I found it really annoying to have roads displayed on the screen…….Too many roads………..

    • Double-check you’re on the latest firmware (fastest 100% sure way is to connect it to Garmin Express on your computer) for the restart bit.

      You can change the density of the maps if you want to deep in the mapping section.

    • Thanks! Completely removed the maps from the screen actually. And yep, on latest firmware as of now w/ 3.20.

      At least by back button works…….

    • FD

      Mine also, but the LBS where I bought were aware of the problem and tested each unit (while uploading the regional maps), some were faulty.

  10. The “Grit” and “Flow” MTB dynamics looks interesting. It appears to be a similar – but much simpler – implementation of what the guys at TrailSense are doing (https://trailsense.com). Any thoughts on this Ray? I guess that a dedicated sensor on the frame provides more accurate data compared to sensors placed in the head unit?

  11. AckCantDecideBoltOr530

    I just bough a Bolt and am debating returning it. I am wondering how widespread the button problem is that I have read reports about. For people that have experienced it, does it seem to be a physical issue with the button or a software issue/glitch?

    • Chris

      The button issue is a physical issue and not software, All of the button on the device have a positive feedback “click” feel when pressed except the back button. That button has a soft “no click” feedback that it was press feel 90% of the time. I assume it’s something with how that button was aligned when attached to the PCB board that it doesn’t make enough contact with the physical outer rubber cover.

  12. Diane

    Just got the edge 530. Would not pair with my inreach mini. Could not get the Strava routes to work. After spending 35 minutes on the phone with Garmin I was told:
    Inreach mini does not work with bike computers. Pairs with Fenix because fenix is made for exploring. Has never paired with bike computers. I pointed out mountain biking is why I purchased the 530. Does not work with bike computers.
    They could not get Strava routes to work either. I need to contact Strava. Second party software. Has nothing to do with them.
    Not thrilled with Garmin

    • RE: inReach Mini: While I agree with you that it’s silly Garmin hasn’t added support to it for the Edge units (something I pointed out a year ago), it’s also hard to be angry since it was never advertised to be there.

      RE: Strava: Oddly enough, this is actually a legit Strava issue assuming it’s the same issue I think it is (and it affects more than just these devices). Strava is working on it. I stumbled onto it as well. Are you talking about the inability to authenticate the Strava Routes app for the first time? If so – I’ll dig up my steps for how to get it to work. It’s technically easy to do, but just wonky.

    • Diane

      You’re correct. I just assumed the inreach mini would work with a device that was promoted as being mountain bike friendly.
      It sounds like my problem with Strava is the same as the one you found. I would like your help on that.
      You gave a way to have the edge 520 show “if found” info on start up. I know I got it from your site, but can’t find it. Could you please send me that link.
      My back button works fine. I got mine from clever training US

    • No problem. The quick one – here’s how to add the ‘if found’ option: link to dcrainmaker.com

      As for the Strava Routes CIQ app issue (where you get ‘session is expired’ when trying to authorize it the first time), here’s my instructions (sorry if they’re a bit unclear).

      1) Open the Strava Routes CIQ app on Edge
      2) It’ll ask on your phone to authorize Strava, click OK/etc…
      3) It’ll then open up the Strava. Do NOT click agree or whatever yet.
      4) From within that little embedded window that popped up – sign out of Strava. The core of the problem here is that you were previously signed into Strava from within that embedded window.
      5) Now after signing out of Strava from that little window, abruptly close the Garmin Connect Mobile app (like, kill the app).
      6) That should also error out the Strava Routes app on the device, but if now, just press back button.
      7) Now, open Garmin Connect Mobile app on your phone again
      8) And then open up Strava Routes app, and follow prompts like normal
      9) This time it should prompt you to first sign-in to Strava, and then it’ll ask to authorize Garmin.
      10) You’re good to go now.

      I know it sounds like a lot of steps, but the whole interaction can be done in under 30 seconds, I’m just trying to make it super clear.

      Strava knows about the issue and is actively working on it from their site. It’s some sort of session persistence thing.

      Hope this helps!

    • Diane

      Thanks, the Strava fix worked. I remembered I had emailed the “if found” instructions to a friend. This is the link: link to dcrainmaker.com
      It still works

    • Diane

      link to dcrainmaker.com
      The last part of the link was cut off.
      /2013/08/display-number-garmin.html
      Not sure what happened

    • JohnD

      Very useful thanks Ray! My 530 wanted me to reauthorise strava apps after the 3.20 update yesterday – not sure why? Anyway the strava page from GCM was just kicking me out no matter what tricks I tried! Eventually installed GCM onto my wifes phone and authorised through that. 530 working well so far with V3s Radar etc but I do find the temperature and elevation readings are around 10% too high.

  13. Roberto

    To take advantage of ClimbPro in flat areas, do you have a tool to catch uphill or in general explore the altitude of an areas?

    • Nuttin you can do there really. If it’s flat…it’s useless.

      (As one who lives in a pancake flat area with a total elevation gain of single-digit meters on most rides.)

    • Roberto

      But even in “pancake” are sometimes you can find something, but you have to know where to look. No tools for “explore” altitude profiles to get inspiration on where to go?

      It would be useful for the flat areas but also for no-flat are when you want to maximize elevation gains/distance

  14. Stephen Morris

    Having an issue with Garmin at the moment. Have had two Edge 1000s, the first replaced under warranty. The second has been good but I had screen freeze and the Power switch has now perished. Longevity was probably sacrificed for water resistance but it seems a design flaw. Garmin solution is for me to buy a new 1030 or pay £200 so that they will replace the white seal. I was astonished and Garmin won’t offer a deal on any other edge. Even with a discount the 1030 is the best part of £370. Are the new Garmins more robust or is Wahoo the way to go?

  15. Marcin ST

    Grate review! I’m going to buy somthing with nav. to replace my cateye padrone smart plus so I Have a question.
    Garmin 530/830 or Sigma Rox 12.0 ?
    Whitch one is faster, smoother, has beter nav. ? I do not care for advance sport functions so much.

  16. Bob L.

    Has anyone been able to use the barfly4 mini with the 530?

  17. Bethesolution

    Who else has gotten edge 530 with the “return button” issue? Mine came two days ago and the return key does not work well. It’s like I really have to find a point where the physical button and internal system meet by pressing it down hard. It’s annoying for sure… I might return it. If you have this issue, what’s your thoughts? Return or keep it?

    • Changren Y.

      @Bethesolution: Read the recent comments. There are many with the “return” button issue. I am currently waiting for a replacement from Garmin.

    • Bethesolution

      Thanks for your opinion. I’m aware of it indeed. People are getting their units now so I was wondering how many more people who have not spoken out loud yet are facing the issue with their decision.

    • Bethesolution

      BTW, a representative from powermetercity told me “that button feel” was intentionally designed for 530… which sounds weird. Any thoughts?

    • Changren Y.

      Sounds like Powermetercity does not want you to return it to them.

    • Bethesolution

      After all, I have to pay return shipping for it. That’s their policy whether or not it’s working upon arrival. I might directly contact Garmin for alternatives… like a replacement.

    • From the comments here, Garmin is swapping out units which exhibit the wonky button issue. So going via Garmin support is probably the easiest n most cases. Note there are two options available:

      A) You send in your unit and they send you a replacement one when they get theirs
      B) You give them a credit card and then they immediately ship you a replacement unit, and then they only charge your credit card if they don’t receive yours (I think you’ve got like 30 days to get it back).

      They don’t often tell you about the 2nd option – but it’s there. And in fact, you can even request faster shipping than the default.

      Cheers!

  18. Sean Speck

    Picked up the 530 this week and used it for a 4 hour ride today. So far it’s been great. One thing I’m wondering if others are noticing is how dark the screen is with auto brightness while indoors? It’s almost impossible to read for me when indoors unless I change the brightness. I can manually set it to 40% and it’s much brighter than the auto brightness. During my ride today, I switched back to auto-brightness and it’s seemed to work OK with overcast conditions.

    So a pretty minor issue considering I’m usually only messing with the settings while indoors, but I’m still surprised the display gets set to such a dim setting.

  19. JONATHAN WOO

    I have the 830 and experienced an issue with GPS + Galileo. I’m sure this problem also affects the 530. When GPS is set to GPS + Galileo I got wonky GPS data. The above route was basically an out-and-back ride with a small loop in the middle. I see significant tracking error. So I’m gonna use GLONASS for now until Garmin fixes the bug. The reason why I want Galileo is the higher accuracy (1m) vs. 3-7m. for GLONASS.

    • Thorsten

      I can confirm that the Edge 530 has the same issue. Just experienced it yesterday.

    • Right now Garmin has stated they’ve mostly focused on GLONASS optimization, and not Galileo (which is why the default is GLONASS). Of course, I firmly believe if an option exists in the menu, it shouldn’t suck. I’ve split my Edge’s – one on GLONASS and one on GALILEO, and haven’t seen any issues like that.

      But for now, I’d stick with GLONASS until Garmin is able to tweak it more.

  20. Martin

    Thank you, great review!

    At the moment i´m using a Garmin Fenix 5s and a Edge 820 for mountain biking. When i pause an activity cause of doing uphill shuttle or lift rides the fenix does not count the elevation when paused an transfers the correct elevation to garmin connect.
    Unfortunately the Edge 830 always counts the not wanted elevation while the activity is paused. I would like to know how much of descent and ascend was done on bike, but since the pause is not working the Edge 830 is not useable in this case.

    Is this problem fixed on the new 530/830 models.

  21. MAGNUS

    @Ray – any known issues/reason why FIT files from the 530 dont register/read on the DC Analyzer? I’ve recorded two rides on the 530 and both have uploaded to GC/TrainingPeaks without issue. But when I import to the DCA site the files are ‘blank/null’ as if there is nothing there.

  22. Chris Cooper

    **** Update ****

    I just received my warranty exchange 530 and this device has the same defective back button. 🙁

    • StillDeciding

      Oh man…that’s not good.

    • Chris

      I was told they wouldn’t have replacement devices to ship out
      until June 7th. I’m sending back the defective replacement and using my original 530 until then.

    • Sebastian Fainbraun

      I received my replacement device and the back button is definitely much better and works with one click; however, compared to my 520 and 520 plus, the tactile feel of all of the buttons on this device is awful. Bad enough that I’ve never even considered the feel of the buttons ever and bad enough that now I notice.

    • Todd

      Did you receive your message replacement from gatmin or another retailer?

    • Tizzledk

      Clever Training UK told me today that they expect to have shipments from Garmin later this week which do not have the bad back button. We will see…..

    • Jeff Biscuits

      Hmm. I got my shipping confirmation today… sounds like I can expect a duff button, then.

    • Changren Y.

      Received my replacement 530 from Garmin yesterday. All the buttons are working fine. They did check the buttons before shipping it out.

    • Nicolas

      Same here! Replacement received from Garmin May 23, all buttons now working fine. It does feel different from the Edge 520’s buttons, but I personally think it’s a good thing. Never really liked the way the buttons felt there. You don’t have to press as hard to make them trigger, which is particularly great when you’re setting up the device. Looking forward to trying that baby out this weekend!

  23. ExEdge820

    I got yesterday Edge530 from Clevertraining.co.uk and unit seems to be solid, no button issues etc. Buttons “feedback” is bit different than previous models in my opinion. First indoor session behind and no sensor dropouts. Promising.

    • Thanks for the support (even if things were a bit bumpy).

      My understanding from Garmin and also the comments here, is that the back button issue wasn’t ‘every unit’, but some % of units. The good news is it sounds like it was pretty black and white in that your button wasn’t likely to develop the issue. Either it was that way broke from the factory, or it was fine.

      (And using ‘was’, as in theory Garmin says it’s been fixed, though I suspect we’ll see some broken stock work it’s way through the system. As noted by Shawn from Garmin above, just shoot a note to Garmin support if you do get a bad button and they’ll get your unit swapped out.)

    • Jiri

      Where exactly should I “shoot a note to Garmin support”? After nearly one month of waiting I received the unit today (31.5.) with a defective back button.Huge disappointment. Contacted Clever Training UK,where I purchased it, no response.
      Garmin doesn´t seem to have an email address where to write to. I am not in the UK, I´m in Prague.

    • So normally I’d recommend Garmin in your country, in this case here: link to support.garmin.com

      However, that page doesn’t look super promising, so I’d contact Garmin UK instead, since that’s honestly where a lot of EU support ends up anyway. Plus, all Garmin major support centers will always support you no matter where you are (if they have to ship a new unit though, they may coordinate that with the local country).

      This page should get you pretty close: link to support.garmin.com – Down at the bottom you can call/chat/e-mail.

    • Jiri

      Thanks very much. Appreciate.

  24. Tiago Fioreze

    Hi Ray,

    I’ve a doubt about the Garmin Edge 530 that maybe you can help. I had previously acquired the Garmin Edge Explore — based on your review, by the way —, which was really good in terms of navigation, but since it was not designed to be loaded up with workouts, I decided to return it. The GE 530 supports workouts and navigation, but I wonder whether it enables me to find or choose a course for my workout? One of your screenshots (Garmin-Edge530-IndividualWorkout) seems to point to that, but I would like to know for sure before I purchase it.

    Thanks for your reviews. They are really great to separate the wheat from the chaff!

  25. Andy

    I ordered from Clever Training UK on the 12th May, contacted them today to see if they had any idea when it might be dispatched and they had no idea when they’ll be getting any stock from Garmin so couldn’t provide any information.

    • Adam

      That’s strange, I ordered on May, 12th as well and I’ve asked them yesterday about predicted shipment date.

      Got response:
      “Concerning the 530 Edge Base arrival we have some units that arrived this morning into the UK warehouse and will be shipping out today and if you are early in the queue yours will ship and the proper shipping and tracking notification will come to your email on file informing you of such action.

      The latest tracking as of last night from Garmin is showing a wave of units coming next week and then another larger wave coming the following week. with this current information with the number of incoming units on the tracking we expect to have all orders fulfilled by the month of May with the later orders in place in the queue getting fulfilled in those first few days in June.”

      So I guess we have to wait till next week 🙁

  26. Sebastian

    Hi everybody

    My edge 530 works fine (besides the back button issue), but it is a bit slow on up/download of routes/trainings/activities. Takes 10-15 min in best case, sometimes upload is completed after 2hrs.
    Any hints what might be causing this? System Setup with other data to be transferred first?

    Any comment is appreciated.

    • Changren Y.

      @Sebastian: I am experiencing something similar too. I have WiFi (home) and Bluetooth (iPhone XS) set up on the Edge 530. The first couple of days, unless I physically connect the device to my Mac, the rides would not upload. I could see the device being connected to the Garmin Connect app. If I try to force a sync, I get this message in the app; Your device seems to be busy, and your sync request timed out. Try again later.

      So I disabled the Bluetooth connection in the Edge 530 and forced it to sync via WIFi and that worked.

      I don’t seem to have this issue at work where the edge 530 is not configured to connect to any WIFI.

    • Hmm – uploads for me are near instant.

      Where things can go sideways sometimes is getting content onto the device. For example, today I was struggling to get a route to send to the device from GCM via Bluetooth. I kept trying, and it kept saying it was syncing – but nothing was happening.

      Turns out, it was downloading a firmware update (the same one you all got already, but the exact number changed for me as I switched up). Once it finished that, it sent the course near instantly.

  27. Chris

    I’ve noticed that with WiFi and Bluetooth enabled if I get home from a ride the Garmin does not auto upload and shows sync failed. If I end my ride while riding home before I’m in range of my home WiFi the ride will upload without an issue. I assume that there is a problem uploading while connected to my home WiFi and connected to my iPhone. Anyone else seen this issue? I assume my work around is to just turn off WiFi..

    • Chris

      I contacted Garmin and they confirmed that if it’s connected to both it will have issues uploading. I’m just going to leave the device paired to my iPhone and leave WiFi off. He said small software updates will still update over Bluetooth and the any major update you will connect via cable to Garmin Express.

    • Changren Y.

      @Chris: Thanks for this update.

    • Louis Matherne

      Thanks for this. I was having the same problem and couldn’t figure it out.

    • Jim

      Did he indicate this would be fixed in a future firmware update? Seems like you shouldn’t have to disable Wi-Fi to get you activities to upload automatically.

    • We have reported the Wi-Fi/Bluetooth upload issues discussed here. For those of you that are experiencing trouble please reach out to our support teams for assistance. We will gather as much information from you as we can to pinpoint what might be causing the problem. Please feel free to mention I have asked you to reach out for assistance. Thank you all for the continued discussion.

  28. Eggo

    Hi there,
    Yesterday i’ve received my garmin edge 530.(NETHERLANDS) Ordered on April 29 th. Connection with strava routes, trail forks and komoot al went well. Also found routes trail forks in the right region. No issue’s with buttons.
    Rode first ride posbank with pre loaded route.
    Stava live segments did work. Climb pro not sure if it is enough gradient. Next week i will test at the French Alps. So far so good 👋

  29. MAGNUS

    Has anyone found how to disable the BLE connection/disconnection alert? I want notifications to come through when there is a BLE connection however I don’t want an alert each and every time it connects/disconnects from my phone.

  30. G S

    The Garmin 530 is the worst cycling related purchase I ever made. I used it on a few rides. It crashes, freezes and has issues with pairing with sensors. This review convinced me to get it and I feel completely fooled. Garmin customer service was just like ‘yeah, these things can all just happen sometimes”. BS. I used 2 Wahoo devices for the past few years without ever having a device crashing or freezing. It’s a joke that Garmin charges money for this thing.

    • Peter

      I also just bought the device with so a good review. Mine has frozen 5 times in the first week. Also problems with pairing. Maybe I just am unlucky and have a bad unit.

    • Generally speaking freezing on a Garmin device means some sort of corruption in a file (usually a course/workout file, but occasionally an activity file).

      Still, before you clear those out – try downloading the latest Edge 530 beta. A lot of people have reported pretty good success with it, and it has a ton of fixes in it: link to www8.garmin.com

    • Oh, and note for anyone else following in comments that Garmin did release a new beta update on July 30th, in case you hadn’t seen it. Says it addresses LiveTrack stuffs and ‘overall device stability’.

  31. Sam

    Ray, have you had any issues with the 530 not charging to 100 percent. Can’t get mine past 98. Is it designed like that? Any help would be great.

    • No issues getting mine to full, however I vaguely remember seeing something in the firmware update notes about a fix there. Or maybe I’m mixing up products.

    • julio formosa

      Hello, thank you die the review. I ordered the 530 from Clevertraining UK and wonder which outfront mount suits concerning the size of the 530 (smaller than 1030 and Higher than 520). Is the K-EDGE Sport ok? Thanks, Julio

    • Sam M.

      Actually just updated on GC and shows 100 percent. Thanks Ray!

  32. marklemcd

    Finally got my 530 last night and set it up to ride this morning. Really like the unit after 1 ride. I don’t find the on unit set up that bad and I really appreciate knowing my wife will know if I have an accident. I find the screen clear and everything is fairly intuitive. I’m surprised but I like it a lot better than my 3 year old Elemnt. A lot better in fact. Also nice that the workout shows on the history of my running watch and is incorporated into it nicely.

  33. JD

    Alguien más con problemas en su garmin 530? Estoy esperando mi 530 y espero no tener ningún inconveniente.

  34. Mick

    Hello!

    In the Garmin 530 you can adjust the X and Y axis to see more than 2km?

  35. Changren Y.

    First non-button related issue for me. All of a sudden, after I made a brief stop during my ride, it stopped collecting ANT+ and BLE data from all my devices (Garmin speed sensor ANT+, Quarq DFour91 Power Meter BLE, Wahoo Tickr X HRM BLE). I didn’t realize what was going on until 2.5 miles later. I had to force a hard power off/on to reset it. After it came back on, it recognized all the paired devices again.

    • James from CyclingTips reported the same thing as well once (and only once). I’d file a ticket with Garmin support. Maybe they can figure out why it happens. Or more specifically, what specific set of conditions leads to that occurring.

    • Changren Y.

      Opened a ticket – at least I thought I did – via the Garmin chat support a few hours ago. I made that activity available on Garmin Connect.

    • JONATHAN WOO

      Just an FYI. I originally had a BLE connection to my Quarq DFour and the ‘auto calibrate’ prompt was not coming up despite me having the ‘auto calibrate’ enabled. I removed the Quarq sensor and reconnected it using ANT+. With ANT+ the ‘auto calibrate’ is working again. So if you use the ‘auto calibrate’ feature before the start of every ride I suggest you use ANT+.

    • Changren Y.

      Ah, that explains why I didn’t get the auto calibrate prompt this morning as my Quarq DFour91 is paired using BLE. Another bug for Garmin to fix 🙂

    • Changren Y.

      @Jonathan Woo: I chose BLE over ANT+ initially because i occasionally have ANT+ dropout issue when riding indoor with older Garmin (520/820).

    • Changren Y.

      @Jonathan Woo: It seems like we are paying Garmin to be their unpaid Quality Control engineers.

    • JONATHAN WOO

      @Changren Y. I had dropout issues (zero cadence, zero power) with my 510 and another Quarq on outdoor rides. Then I got the 520 and the dropout issues disappeared completely. So it was a head unit issue. On the 830 it’s been 100% solid using ANT+. It seems like your dropout issue on the 520/820 while riding indoors could be related to interference. I don’t do indoor rides.

    • Changren Y.

      The ANT+/BLE freeze happened again. I am going to force all my devices to connect via ANT+ to see if this gets better. This is getting quite annoying.

    • Charly

      I had the same issue on 3 of my last 4 rides. The power meter just does not seems to work anymore. I am convinced this is coming from the Edge.
      Only a hard restart of the device fixes it.
      I hope a firmware update will fix it

  36. Chris

    OK, back to the drawing board on this ride upload issue. Today I finish a ride and I can see my phone is connect but it will not upload. I’ve tried power cycling the phone and Garmin I’ve tried turning the phone pairing off and connecting to WiFi and still NOTHING! I’m trying so hard to enjoy this device but it’s making me miss my Wahoo Bolt that I owned for 1 year and never even thought about my bike computer because it just worked. I now ride around hoping my device doesn’t freeze, Stays paired to my phone, Does drop Ant + and will it upload once I’m finished.

    • Just to double-check, which firmware are you on?

    • Chris

      When I open the Garmin Connect app and try to sync it shows

      “Your device seems to be busy, and your sync request timed out. Try again later”

    • Changren Y.

      If you disable the Phone (in settings on Edge 530) and enable WiFi, are you able to upload that ride from your Edge 530 (Obviously, you won’t be using the Garmin Connect Mobile app to do this)? I had similar issue in the beginning and that’s what I did to get around it.

    • JONATHAN WOO

      I’m also having upload issues with my 830. With my 520 once I hit ‘save’ the ride is automatically uploaded to my iPhone 6 without me doing anything. On the 830 I have to open up the GC app. on my IPhone and hit the ‘refresh’ button a few times. I’m on the latest version of GC and the 830 (V3.20). It seems the 830 has taken a step backwards on uploading. I have the WiFi disabled but I don’t think it should matter.

    • Changren Y.

      For me, if the ride does not automatically upload the first time, no matter how many times I try to manually refresh the GC app, disable/re-enable BT on my iPhone, I will get the “Your device seems to be busy, and your sync request timed out. Try again later” message in the GC app.

    • Chris

      I just recently got a Varia RTL510 that I really enjoy so I’m hoping Garmin gets these bugs resolved so I don’t have to return everything and jump back to Wahoo with less features but a stable device.

    • Louis Matherne

      Still an issue for me too. Upload always just worked on my Edge 1000. Not so with Edge 830. 🙁

  37. Lance

    This thing is a disaster, at least for me. Drops connection to the cadence sensor during rides (I bought the sensor bundle kit). Reboots/resets many times in the middle of a ride and even when using it at home. Buttons are janky and don’t always register presses. Sharp turn alerts come up unreadable with the font garbled. I was warned about Garmin…I should have listened.

    I am on the most current firmware.

    • 1) If your back button isn’t pressing properly, contact Garmin and they’ll swap out the unit. Simple as that. There were some early units that had a manufacturing defect.

      2) What firmware version are you on?

    • Lance Olvey

      Thanks DC, thanks for your response. It is not just the back button. Several of the buttons misfire a portion of the time and in general they feel off. Hard to explain, just feel loose and cheap…as well as two of them not registering presses sometimes. Two of my buttons actually double click, meaning the first click does nothing but if I press further it will click again and register. It is almost as if they are misaligned or something. BTW: When I bought the unit two days ago I had no idea of these button issues. As soon as I used the unit out of the box my first impression was disappointment with the button feel…meaning I was not influenced by crowd mentality :-). I have not decided yet if I am going to bother with Garmin swapping it and potentially getting another bum unit, or if I will just return it and go another direction.

      Turns out I was not on the newest firmware. I thought it was the latest because I used the option to check for new firmware on the unit 3 times and each time it said no update available. Then I connected to the PC and it also showed no update available. However, I left it connected to the PC overnight and sometime in the middle of the night it detected the newer version. Not sure why it was not showing it before. Hopefully going from 2.4 to 3.2 will solve the issues I am having (except for the buttons of course).

      I will give it a ride or to to see how it goes.

      Is there a place where one can find release notes? I tried looking for a page so I could see if there was newer firmware but couldn’t find it.

    • RE: Buttons

      Yeah, it was only a back button issue. Either way, i’d ring up Garmin and just have them sort your buttons out.

      RE: Firmware

      There’s a substantial difference between the firmware that was on your unit and 3.20 – massive difference. Hopefully that’ll solve things.

    • Alan Hogan

      Hey Lance, any new thoughts about the back button in the last day or 2? Seems like anywhere I read there are issues with the back button. Curious if anyone has said anything about possible solution.

    • RE: Back button

      It’s broken. It’s a ‘known issue’ by Garmin. If you’ve got a bum back button, the only path to success is a new unit.

      Up above in the comments section Garmin chimed in: link to dcrainmaker.com

      Basically they say that it’s been fixed in manuf, but that realistically some inventory out there may still have issues.

  38. Brambr

    Is anyone else having trouble with the wifi? My Edge 530 just doesn’t seem to find any wifi network while my smartphone and laptop can at least find 20 networks. I already updated the firmware but this didn’t solve the problem.
    Everything else seems to work, just can’t connect to wifi.
    While I don’t seem to have a malfunctioning back button I do have the feeling that no button at all actually works as it should. They al work perfect for 90% of the time. The other 10% there’s just nothing. This seems to be the case for ALL my buttons…

    • Some people have said it has to do with WiFi types, though I’m not so sure.

      Mine was working just fine until Friday or so – and now it can’t find any new WiFi networks to save it’s life (at home or office). Existing networks it uploads just fine to (including Google WiFi that I use). It’s on my to-do troubleshooting list. Though, admittedly, pretty far down that list right now.

    • Henry

      I had to re-pair my 530 (V3.2) with my iphone XS Max on latest ios every time to get a ride to upload, potentially the work around is to disable wifi altogether until they release an update that makes wifi work.

      Another issue I have is that the screen freezes and still show the three power button options when I try to power off the device, it just never turns off the screen until I hold the power button 10 seconds to reboot it.

  39. LittleSaul

    Undecided between MTB bundle und just the Edge. Is the bundle worth it?

  40. Scott

    Anyone else finding the “Auto” Live Track essentially useless? I’ve had it enabled, uninstalled and reinstalled the Connect iOS app multiple times, tried disabling WiFi on both my phone and 530 (per something I read somewhere), tried standing on one leg with one eye closed and howling at the moon, and also tried enabling it while doing a hand stand. NO matter what, it simply doesn’t work…it’s literally sent one email to my wife when I’ve started a ride.

    Also cannot for the life of me (or any of the above magic tricks), get the Connect app to remember my Strava Beacon setting.

    • Louis Matherne

      Only seems to work for me at the kitchen table. Never on a ride. 🙁

    • Scott

      Same here. The only times I’ve ever got it to work is when I have the 530 and my phone in front of me trying to troubleshoot why it isn’t working. Then, it *only* works when I have the connect app open and am on the LiveTrack page.

      For the record, outside of this, my phone and 530 are connected, and the Connect app is running in the background….which has caused it’s own issue in that it’s absolutely crushing my phone battery when the 530 is on. To the tune of 45% of my battery usage.

    • Jim

      I’ve had the same battery issue with my 830 and the GC mobile app on my iPhone Xs Max. Atrocious battery usage when GC is opened and it even seems to continue after I forced close GC. So I just uninstalled CG on the phone since I haven’t had an issue uploading using Wi-Fi or the phone. I’ll continue to upload via Wi-Fi. Seems the battery usage has been an problem for a while for some people so I wouldn’t count on it ever being fixed.

    • Andras

      Try to switch on gps on the cellphone, it should not be used for that, but i have the feeling it is required for the software.

  41. Simon

    Hi DC,

    is it possible to charge the 530 with a powerbank oder usb micro when i drive?

  42. StillDeciding

    Is anyone else cancelling their back-order? It seems like both Garmin and Wahoo released before they were ready.

    Garmin seems to be very buggy and have button issues (even beyond the identified back button issue)
    Wahoo pulled back and will release again in July??

    I had a bolt that i returned thinking I would jump on one of these two devices. Now I have no computer and am thinking of cancelling my edge 530 backorder until this can be set straight (if ever)

  43. Steve

    Hi everybody,

    I have a question regarding the source of the elevation data for a route. In my region, the elevation profile from terrain maps (like in Garmin Connect or Strava) is more or less rubbish, like oscillating between -5% and 20% on a constant 5% climb.
    Does the 530 use the same elevation data as Garmin Connect? For better comprehension, I attached a picture from Sa Calobra 1) from Garmin Connect (191m Descent on the climb?!) and 2) [next post] from a ride with barometric altimeter. How would that look on ClimbPro?

    Can someone please comment if Climbpro is really that useful?
    And if not, is it at least possible to import a route inc. elevation data, in case you have ridden it before with a barometric altimeter?

    Many thanks, and great review as always!

  44. Jonny

    Hi Ray,

    I can’t get the 530 to sync with the connect app on my iPhone XS Max at all – meaning I can’t send routes over or sync rides back. The 530 is on v3.2 and I’ve tried everything, including starting from scratch, toggling Bluetooth on/off, restarting both, unpairing/repairing etc. Your review was so positive but it has just been one disappointing headache since arriving; one that I can’t even use.

    What am I doing wrong? My Fenix 5 has always been flawless

    • Changren Y.

      @Jonny: If you look at the Garmin forum for 530, you will see there are several others, including myself, having problem syncing using the Garmin Connect app while the device is connected to the phone via Bluetooth and a WiFi network simultaneously. To get around this issue, try the following while the Edge 530 is connected to a WiFi network:
      – Disable Phone (On Edge 530, Menu –> Settings –> Connected Features –> Phone
      – Upload new ride (On Edge 530, Menu –> History –> Rides –> Upload new ride
      – The previous step, if successful, should force a two-way sync between the Edge 530 and Garmin Connect (Garmin’s server, not the app), bypassing the Garmin Connect app on your iPhone.

      Some in the Garmin forum have reported success getting around this sync issue by disabling either the Phone or the WiFi on the Edge 530, until Garmin releases an update to fix this.

    • Jonny

      Thanks for your help – I still can’t get it to sync. Was planning to take it out for a whirl and need a route loaded but guess I’ll be sticking to the Fenix 5!

      If they don’t resolve the next couple of days I’ll be sending back

    • Jonny

      How will they fix it? An update to the GC app? If they change the firmware I don’t see how you’d get an update onto it…

    • Changren Y.

      @Jonny: You weren’t able to get the rides uploaded even with the Phone (bluetooth) disabled and connected to WiFi?

    • Changren Y.

      The fix could be in a software update for the Edge 530, an update to the Garmin Connect app, or both. Firmware update can be done via the Garmin Express desktop app (on a Mac, not sure what it’s called on a PC) or on the Edge 530 after it has downloaded the firmware update over WiFi.

  45. Chris

    OK, I’m still having issue so tonight after it would not upload I checked the edge 530 status menu under Phone and it shows “searching” but my iPhone Xs Bluetooth menu shows the Garmin 530 twice (One shows connected and one shows disconnected). I started the whole process over by forgetting the connection in my Bluetooth menu, Forgetting the phone on the Garmin 530 phone menu, and deleting the device in Garmin Connect. Once I started the process over I noticed after I put the 530 in Bluetooth pairing mode and start the Garmin Connect “Add device” menu it will ask to Select An Accessory and I tap 530. It then shows “Bluetooth Pairing Request” and I tap pair and it goes to another screen that shows “Pairing Your Edge 530” and then another “Bluetooth Pairing Request” pops up and if you don’t select to pair it will fail to complete the set up. I believe my device sync issues are due to the device forcing the pair process twice.

  46. Alexander

    So if I purchased a Garmin 530 from bike24 it comes with a Euopean wide map. What part of Europe does it cover, and if I want the USA (North America) Map, where do I get it and how do I upload it?

  47. Walter

    Hi Ray,
    Thanks for the great review as always — i just received the unit I ordered through CT :-).

    Quick question: do you know if the limit on the # of sensors has increased vs. the 520? I’ve occasionally gotten an error message that I’ve paired too many sensors, so hoping that # is higher on the new unit.

    Thanks!!

  48. Chris

    Ray,

    Can you check your paired edge 530 to see if it shows two 530 devices in your phones Bluetooth menu? I’ve been troubleshooting my sync issue and discovered that during the Garmin Connect setup process it establishes two device connections and was not sure if that’s the issue since it warns you to not pair directly through the phones Bluetooth menu and to use Garmin Connect to establish the connection. This morning I called Garmin support and was told that it should only show one 530 device in my phones Bluetooth menu. The agent said something is going wrong where it’s pairing through Garmin Connect and through the iPhones Bluetooth menu. I asked this same question on the Garmin 530 forum and a Garmin employee replied with conflicting information from what I was told on the phone this morning as that it should establish two Bluetooth connections.

    • JONATHAN WOO

      I have sync issues and I too have two 830 devices shown on my phone. I did try to forget the phone and repair via GC. But by following the steps within GC you end up with two 830s on the phone. I’d like to know how exactly do you add the device under GC but end up with only one paired Edge. Thanks.

    • Sorry for the confusion here. On iOS the Edge will make two Bluetooth connections. One is for BLE and one is for Bluetooth Classic. If you continue to have trouble with your phone and Edge connections please get in touch with our support team, let them know I asked you to reach out, so we could collect the logs GCM from your phones and we will investigate.

    • Chris

      Thank you for the clarification.

    • Jonny

      @Shaun – mine has the 2 instances in the Bluetooth menu but cannot sync. Is there an update coming? I’ve never had these issues with my Fenix and am close to giving up and sending this back for a wahoo

    • JONATHAN WOO

      Same here Shawn. Mine shows two connections and the status says ‘connecting’ but never connects. To connect to the phone I have to open up the GC app. Once the GC app is open it connects to the 830 and the ride is downloaded.

      Another issue with the 830 which I hope is a simple firmware fix. I ride a tandem and have both the 830 and 520 on the bike. The 830 reads 4 degrees F higher than the 520. The 520 shows a realistic temp. Perhaps the temp. sensor is picking up some extra heat from the circuit. I’ve seen others report the same thing as well- the 830 reads high. Thanks.

  49. Steve

    Hey folks does any one know if there are changes to workout controls?

    In that I think with the Elemnt Bolt you can start an interval again if something happens? Is this possible with the Garmin 530?

  50. ormler

    I recieved my 530 yesterday. Setup and first ride worked without bigger complications or even crash. Even all buttons work as expected. Until now I’d say: Great device!

    Even auto-upload worked after a while.

  51. EricRobo

    Received 530 yesterday (Clever Training UK). After a couple of hours setting up had to phone Garmin…. was trying to update to version 3.20…. Garmin Express said it was on v3.20, device said v2.40. Eventually G said to leave at its current version as version 3.3 is expected very soon.

    I’m now trying to get OS 1:50k maps on it… looks like it’s going to cost £149.99 as a download.
    Any other options ?

    Another question is:
    Has anyone managed to load a gpx on to it (presumably as a course) ?
    In the manual I found how to do it, via Garmin Connect, and then Settings, Send to device, but on this new Win10 laptop it ..doesn’t work, it thinks I’m wanting to switch applications from Microsoft Edge to Garmin Express (which is open)….

    However I managed to send it to the device via Garmin Connect on my phone… (the map on it is rubbish indeed,but at least there is a blue line (my gpx ‘course’) to follow.

    It’s all getting a bit messy and complicated…

    • Changren Y.

      @EricRobo: When I received my replacement Edge 530, its version was 2.40. When I connected the device to Garmin Express, it did not update the software version on the Edge 530. After I powered the Edge 530 off and on several times, its version was updated to 3.20. If you have already done that, it’s possible your Edge 530 has already been updated to 3.20.

      Is there a reason for not using the .FIT or .TCX format for a course?

    • Eric Robinson

      Hi Changren Y. Just powered it off/on a few times, but with no effect. Garmin (eventually) said to wait for version 3.3.

      It’s not that I’m NOT using .FIT or .TCX format for a course.
      I have a lot of rides as GPX, a very common format. I guess I could import into G Connect, and send to the device from there… On my Win10 laptop it would not work (I mean via G Connect ), but it did work via G Connect from my iPhone

      I do wonder how the software testing before rollout is being managed at Garmin. Whoever is responsible should be called to account…. they are a very big company….

      Maybe Ray DC can pull a few strings.

    • For GPX, you should be able to put them in the ‘NewFiles’ folder, under Garmin on the Edge device (if connected to a computer, like your Windows 10 laptop). That basically tells the Edge to go ahead and digest them.

    • Eric Robinson

      Thanks Ray, that worked.
      The Manual…. does say connect device to PC, choose the file… does NOT say what file extension, copy the file and paste into a folder on the device (which folder it does not say !!!! )

      Just strengthens my poor view of Garmin manuals….

      by the way on Win10, in G Connect, having chosen a route you’ve done, SEND TO DEVICE (it shows Edge 530 as connected) does not work.

      Much better to just do it as you have outlined.

      Regards

  52. Heiko

    did anybody of the owners check battery life with a Varia Radar? I read that there is a significant runtime penalty with current devices (e.g. 520)

    • tizzledk

      Not yet but will try it tomorrow (3 hour bike ride) with that and the new Edge 530

    • JONATHAN WOO

      I’ve done many three hour rides (more precisely, about 2:45) with my 830 and Varia. And my battery usage is around 15% (100% to 85%). I also have the 520 and there’s no comparison between the 520 and 830 when it comes to battery capacity.

  53. Kirstena

    So first big ride with the 530 today
    Main reason I bought it was the ClimbPro functionality, which sseems to work efficiently well as long as the elevation information within they loaded course is accurate.
    However, I had hoped I would also be able to see what climbs are up next and how far ahead they are, but on a route containing 21 climbs in the Ardennes, the list always show that last 5, not the next 5. Or am I doing something wrong?
    See screenshot

  54. Achim

    Hi, just received the 530. The top right button doesn’t have the “click” feeling like the others. Is it right to assume that all buttons should feel the same?

  55. Peter

    I finally got my hands on one, mostly convinced by the huge feature list. But it did not work out well. After the first ride I spent half an hour figuring out how to upload a ride. No luck. Tried all the tips, disabling phone, wifi, restarting phone and device etc. A couple times the device wrote upload finished but it did not show up in Garmin connect.
    Next issue today, I tried the gps + galileo mode and that is utherly useless. It has an error in the magnitude of kilometers. Not good.
    After the ride tried to upload, again no luck. I turned the device off and now it shows just a greyish on/off icon without backlight and does not react to any buttons. So far a complete failure.

  56. ormler

    Third ride, first crash. Upon start, the 530 froze completely.

    Sync with Apple Health works only 2 of 3 cases.

    Come on, Garmin. You can fix your software, can’t you?

  57. Rivellon

    About time, but got mine yesterday from Clever, first ride with it today

    + My back button work fine ! as all others! Different feeling but not that bad after all
    + No issue to upgrade it to 3.20 using garmin express on my computer
    + 4hours ride, 15% battery used while following a course : Awesome! (Used to be at least 40% with my 520 Plus)
    + My backlight setting was 10% and still very good display

    – During the first hour, GPS (GPS + GLONASS activated) was awfull, then far better
    – Why my average cadence is 70 on the 530, but 80 on the 520 plus ? I didnt notice any sensor deconnection but ?
    – I m not that happy with this Climb feature, I ride my home forest I know by hearth; he did aggreagate many climbs all together to set 11 climbs. Those make no sense to me here. I think it is way more usefull on road than mountain bike as it work. And I dislike it while following a course.
    – I tweaked this feature off while navigation tonigth, then it crashed : frozen. damn. restarted ok.
    – Still no live strave segment while following a course. Even it display the full segment path on the course. They couldnt make it work instead of their own climbing feature ?

    -> I hope they fix it more : no crash
    -> I hope my GPS will be accurate from start to the end tomorow
    I have to ride without navigation to try how live strava segment is working, and how gradient whyle climbing is working aswell

    • Paul

      Similar story for me. Good overall but GPS inaccuracies compared to my old 605/705 including side by side comparison. Drift under tree cover like I’ve not seen in 80k miles of GPS data. I wrote to garmin with files and was directed to the usual advice on the website.

      Otherwise there’s few irritations like the incident alert disabled warning and phone drop outs but I’ve not seen the issues with buttons or upload problems.

      Compared to when I was an early adopter of the 605/705 series in 2009 these are happy days.

    • Rivellon

      GPS 99% accurate on my second 4hours ride, sound good
      Live elevation(gradient) seems good also
      Cadence equal on both 530 and 520 this time(even its seems a bit low); further test incoming

      I didnt enable wifi at all on it, but sync with garmin connect on iphone didnt work for my ride
      I didnt wait, and plugged it on my computer(worked instant)

  58. Achim

    Hi Ray – I very often follow Strava routes but without navigating and would prefer just to see my route without all the other map details. Is it possible to disable the map or do I need to delete the map (and reinstall it if I need it) ?

  59. Paul

    Hey DC,

    Will the 530 and 830 work with Garmin vector 2 power peddles, the ones with the black pods?

    Thanks.

  60. ormler

    Hello,

    the iOS App “Garmin Connect IQ” shoes my 530 device, but does not connect, so I cannot install anything. Connect App works fine although.

    Has someone an idea how to fix that?

    I tried to install software vie Garmin Express, but even after sync no Apps show up on the device.

  61. Doug Curtis

    This may be due to changes in the 3.20 firmware update, I noticed that on a ride today (not using a course/route) that I got hydration and nutrition alerts. I have the profile alerts set to Auto and they came in at about every 20 minute.

    • Rivellon

      It work also with navigation activated

    • J. E.

      Interesting,

      I did not get any Hydration or Nutrition alerts on my 2.5h ride yesterday. Do I need to switch it on specifically or should it work out of the box. It did ask me afterwards how many calories and drinks I had but I was expecting popups during the ride.

    • So there are two different categories of hydration/nutrition alerts.

      A) Ones you can manually set to just remind you to drink/eat, that are generally time based (i.e. repeat every 10 hours)
      B) Smart alerts, which are mostly caloric based but also account for heat/humidity, which my understanding in current versions require a course/route be used since it’s trying to figure out how much you need for your ride (and thus doesn’t present caloric requirements for a short bike commute).

    • J. E.

      Thanks Ray!

      I was following a course (80km) and did not see any of the smart alerts. Do you know if there is a setting to switch these alerts on/off

      Interestingly, the Nutrition and Hydration section on Garmin Connect tells me that I should have consumed 2145 ml and 1,690 C. I don’t know how I would have consumed the equivalent of 17 gels and more then two liters of water but having a reminder might help to at least drink a bit more frequently.

    • Rivellon

      There is an option to get the hydratation alert, i set mine to 15 mins, works fine

      Also, at the end of your ride, you get 2 step :
      – one for hydration, it tell you how much you should have drink, and you can answer how much you actually did
      – same for nutrition : but i have no clue how much cals i have eat, whereas i know how much I have drink. I dont see how usefull this could be unless i become too much scientific about nutrition

    • Doug Curtis

      Double checked, I have the H/N (Hydration/Nutrition) tracking turned on and in my Road Profile I have the H & N Alerts set to Auto.
      Besides having the 3.20 firmware, I hooked up the 530 to my computer and got a fairly large map update of the Routable Cycle Map of US 2019.10.

    • J. E.

      Thanks Doug and Rivellon , that helped Eat and Drink alerts seem to be switched off by default. If anyone else is looking, you can find them in the activity settings under Alerts/Drink Alert and Eat Alert Respectively . Both can be set to Smart and are different to the Calorie Alert. Will give it a try next weekend.

  62. Roger

    Hi Ray, I have an issue that came up when using the Edge 530 with my Tacx Neo2. The power readings were simply ridiculous, many many drop-outs as well. After seeing that, I ran the egde 530 alongisde the edge 520. The 520 gave perfectly good readings whilst the 530 continued to show stupid numbers. See the photos attached – have you seen this at all?

    Thanks/Roger

    • Roger

      Here is the 520 comparison photo

    • I haven’t see that before, though, given those numbers I’d take the Edge 530 any day! 😉

      To confirm, you’ve got the latest Edge 530 firmware?

      I haven’t seen a Tacx Neo spit out crazy numbers before. I also still don’t understand why Garmin doesn’t have a wattage cap in place. Seriously, there’s no good reason to ever log/etc a 4,000w+ power data point. End of story.

    • Roger

      Ha! I’d be winning the Giro with those numbers…

      It’s bizarre because the edge 520 recorded from the same Neo2 and gave perfectly normal numbers as you can see from the 2nd photo I posted. So I don’t think it’s the Neo2 that is the root of the problem.

      The 530 is fully updated so I’m a bit lost as to what to do. Will contact Garmin support and let you know.

      Cheers

    • Changren Y.

      Was the Tacx Neo 2 connected to the Edge 530 via ANT+ or BLE?

    • Roger

      BLE I think

    • Roger

      Hi Ray, problem solved on this one for me – I removed then re-connected the Neo2 and all is good, 520/530 giving same power readings.

      I also commented on drop-outs in the questions raised below.

      Cheers
      Roger

    • Roland

      Same here with the Tacx Neo. The power readings were in the max even a bit higher with more the 50000 watt in combination with many drop outs as well.
      Had no problems with the cadence provided by the Tacx cadence meter.

      Never had any issues with the Edge 1000 and the Neo.

  63. Michael L Neville

    Hi Ray sorry but i have to disagree with you. This device is far from the perfect bike computer. Wonky back button. The only way to set up data screens is through the device itself with the buttons it is laborious and tedious.
    It won’t calibrate with my stages, reboots during rides constantly dropping and picking up sensors. Quite frankly I think its junk. Garmin support has been kind of a nightmare. Taking their time responding to email and without any real answers just more request foe me to do something.
    It appears to me that Garmin is just shipping stuff without adequate / any QA, expecting paying customers to be their Beta users. I could have replaced the battery on my 820 I would have done that and spared myself the frustration.

    • mpulsiv

      I was super excited about 530 but after 700+ comments, I’ve decided to keep using my trustworthy Edge 500. 8 years and going strong with “0” issues. It disturbing how Garmin neglect to test their products. At least provide bug template to technical customers (e.g. us) who continue to contribute their time and effort for free!
      Hopefully, Garmin PM’s planned their release schedule for the next 6 months 🙂
      I’ll wait for release notes from 4.0 firmware 🙂

    • RE: Back button

      Simply put – if you’ve got the back button issue, your unit is defective and Garmin will have to swap it out.

      For reboots and such, I’m not sure what’s going on there. It’s not something I’ve seen.

      On sensor dropouts mid-ride, in receiving a response from Garmin last night, they believe the issue may be related to folks that have paired Bluetooth Smart sensors (versus ANT+), but they’re still troubleshooting it. In the meantime, if you’ve got sensors paired via BLE and can instead pair them via ANT+, it sounds like that’s the best bet (only a handful of sensors out there are BLE-only thankfully).

      That said, I totally agree on the challenges Garmin seems to be having more broadly with bugs. More soon…

    • Greg

      The dropout issue is not exclusively a BLE issue since I don’t have any BLE sensors, I have had numerous ANT+ sensor dropouts that would not recover without resetting the unit since it would hang on the poweroff screen.

      Anecdotally, I rode with BT to the phone turned off last night and did not have any sensor issues.

    • Good to know, I’ll pass along this specific comment (and happy to pass along your email if your OK). It’s part of a much much larger discussion I’m having with them, but this is one specific issue of focus.

    • Roger

      Hi Ray, interestingly, I saw drop-outs (lots) when riding on the Neo2 in ERG mode, this morning, riding on the Neo2 without ERG mode, the dropouts disappeared. I sent pictures of the file readings to Garmin support.

      Cheers
      Roger

    • For those of you that have reported sensor drop issues please see the forum thread listed below. We would like to gather your feedback to help understand the issue. We understand your frustrations and are working on getting this resolved ASAP.

      link to forums.garmin.com

  64. Chris Horsfield

    When browsing the map to select a destination you say browse to the point and then select it but you don’t say how to do that – you select by doing a long press on the top right button. That was not very obvious (to me at least).

    When following a route from say Ridewithgps the Garmin seems to generate its own cues. I have not found a way for it to show the cues passed to it from the web site.

    Chris

  65. Sibo

    I second this question. I want a bike computer primarily to explore new, distant routes, so 5h+ battery life with on-screen navigation is what I need. I bought an Edge Explore (listed 12h battery life) and was sorely disappointed that I could only squeeze 3h of battery life out of it.

    • Sibo,

      The battery life of the Edge Explore should get you way further than 3 hours. Please reach out to our support team and we will find out what is happening with your device.

  66. Chris Horsfield

    On android the Garmin Connect manual route planning seemed to work OK for me. Of course Easy Route is not (yet) available on android so I don’t have that comparison but I think Ray is a little harsh here.

  67. Chris Horsfield

    I have solved how to display course points ( say for following an Audax cue sheet).

    There are 2 settings that have to be correct.

    From the main menu select Navigation>Courses>Course Options and here turn “Turn Guidance” off. Then go back 1 page and scroll down and select your route/course, scroll down or up to find Settings and on that page select Course Points on.

    Now when you select Ride and are on the map screen pressing the top right button brings up a menu and if you scroll down past Navigation the next entry is Course Point List giving you a list up upcoming cue points.

    The Bolt handles this better and is generally a more intuitive interface. The 530 buttons are difficult to locate in gloves. I have to use my left hand to swap pages?? Maybe I will buy the remote.

  68. T v D

    Hi Ray,

    How is the Bluetooth connection to the phone on this and 830 device?

    Better or just as crap as with the edge 1030.

    You’ve asked Garmin, at sea otter if i’m not mistaken, about these 1030 phone issues. Did they already answer?

  69. Sean

    Hi Ray,

    One thing I’ve been wondering about is how to get the best out of the Garmin training stats when mixing virtual rides with out door ride. For example, in my case I have Tacx Desktop set up to sync with Strava and for out door rides I have Garmin Connect do the same thing.

    That works great but it means that in door rides are invisible to the Garmin Edge 530, so it’s currently mocking my “detraining” week. 😛

    I could record the indoor rides directly with the Garmin but if I do Garmin Connect will sync them Strava and I’ll end up with a double entry for each indoor ride.

    Other than having Tacx Desktop sync with Garmin Connect directly (something I presume is in the works now Garmin own Tacx) is there any other way to do this that I’m missing?

  70. David E

    I have had both an 830 and a 530 for a couple of weeks now, so I thought it might be helpful to others to record my experiences to date.

    830 or 530? In the end I have decided to go with the 530. There is very little difference between the two (830 has a nicer, shiny black bezel for those who care about such things) other than buttons or touch screen. I found display setup etc. a bit faster with the touch scree, but it is also quite sensitive and so often made selections when trying to scroll down or up that was a bit annoying. Once used to the buttons I actually found display set up as easy with those than the touch screen. Moving between data screens is also more definite using buttons than with the screen. That said, the touch screen is nice and responsive and works well even in rain. I thought it would be better for map manipulation, and it is, but the button integration on the map is actually quite neatly done. Thinking ahead to autumn / winter operating the device in gloves is easier with buttons. The clincher though is that the 530 is £80 cheaper.

    I had problems with connecting both to Garmin connect on my iPhone. This improved after I disabled WiFi on the Garmins. No problems using Garmin Express on my PC.

    I have not had any device crashes or experiences of sensor dropouts, mix of Bluetooth and ANT+ sensors. Firmware has been 3.20 from the start.

    ClimbPro is a nice feature and worked well on a number of rides where I was using a TCX route.

    After a 6hour ride the battery was still at 75% on my 830 – although the phone was only connected for the last hour or so. I also did not use the map that much. Other 3-4 hour rides on the 530 have come back with battery life at 80-85%.

    I would like to find a way to import ridewithgps routes automatically, the only way I have been able to upload them is to download on PC and then drop into the Garmin’s ‘new files’ folder. Anyone know if there is a way?

    My 530 is affected by the dodgy back button issue. I have now sent it back to Garmin. I have not though found Garmin support particularly helpful or consistent. One response I got back said that the unit would be swapped out for a ‘newly overhauled device’ even when I pointed out that it was a new product. The chap I actually spoke to confirmed though that it would be a device from the production line. We will see! If not, I will return to CleverTraining for a refund and wait for teething issues to be ironed out,

    Overall though I have been really pleased with both 530 and 830 and can not wait to get a properly working device back on the bike.

    PS the Bontrager Blendr mount for the Garmin works really well and there is plenty of room for button access.

    • Louis Matherne

      Not exactly an answer to your question but I download the .fit route file from RWGPS and copy directly to the route folder on my Garmin. I find this works better in that I’ve had some routes that were similar copy over each other when converted when I put them in the “new files” folder. I don’t have that problem with the .fit files directly into the route folder.

    • Greg

      You can avoid downloading the file and just copy the rideWithGps route URL into the web site dynamic.watch and then download the route to the Edge using the CIQ routeCouse app.

    • David E,

      Sorry to hear the frustration with our support. Please know your device will be replaced with a new Edge 530. Reach out to our support team and mention I asked for your reply if you run into any issues or concerns.

    • Nicolas

      I actually went one step further, and installed dynamic.watch Connect IQ app, then connected dynamic.watch website to my strava account and RWGPS accounts. Strava starred routes, and RWGPS pinned routes automatically appear in your dynamic.watch Connect IQ app once that is done. Super convenient.

    • KDeWeerd

      I found the GRouteLoader Widget yesterday. That seems to combine some interesting features, and being a widget can be run while an activity is in progress.
      When combined with gexporter on Android, you can even send routes from your phone directly onto the 530 with going through the Connect app/website.

    • David E

      Thanks Louis, I will remember that tip.

    • David E

      Shawn, thanks, the device is back with Garmin, so hopefully I will get a new unit back with a working back button within the next couple of days. Everyone I have dealt with @Garmin Support has been friendly and responsive, it is just that the advice provided has been inconsistent.

    • David E

      Greg, Nicolas, KDeWeerd, thank you for the helpful suggestions. Will definitely give dynamic.watch a go. Just a shame that there is no direct integration with RWGPS and the Garmin Edge.

    • Jeff Biscuits

      The quickest and easiest way to get routes on the device is to get RouteCourse to automatically sync pinned routes. So once I’ve created a route in RWGPS I simply pin it, then go to my Garmin, open RouteCourse, and tap to download.

    • David E

      Replacement 530 arrived today. Setting it up I discovered that there is now a new RWGPS app in ConnectIQ for the 530/830. Downloaded it and you can now download routes straight from your RWGPS account onto the 530, then go to courses and all the downloaded routes are available to ride. Works really well, and just what I was looking for.

      New device came preloaded with 3.20 firmware and working back button. Happy days (hopefully).

    • Louis Matherne

      That is exciting news. Can’t wait to try it.

  71. Cc

    Hi, I’ve just picked up an Edge 530 and love it for riding outdoors. But I’m wasting so much time trying to get it connected to, and controlling, my Wahoo Kickr snap for pre-loaded power workouts from Training Peaks. It struggles to connect as a smart trainer and prefers to connect as a passive power meter, meaning the Kickr refuses to run in erg mode. Wondered if you have any tips? And thanks for these awesome reviews by the way!

  72. Brian

    I just got my Edge 830 (via CleverTraining). So where/how does it prompt you to activate the TrailForks stuff on the non-bundle version? I haven’t seen anything.

    Also, since I’ll be taking a trip to Europe this summer, is there any reason to pay Garmin for its (huge) map download, rather than continuing to use the older method with OpenStreetMaps?

    thx

    • Mark

      Did you figure out the trailforks issue? I’m having the same problem on the Edge 530.

    • Just noticed this comment…

      To active Trailforks data on a non-bundle Edge 530/830, you’ll open the Menu (Settings), then go to ‘Connect IQ’, then ‘Trailforks’. You’ll need to have first created an account on the TrailForks site (free account is fine). At which point the Connect IQ TrailForks app will ask you to open your phone and login to the TrailForks site.

      It’s all pretty quick and painless and takes a few seconds, and then it’s activated. You never need to open the TrailForks app again.

      For folks that buy the mountain-bike bundle, it’s pre-activated.

  73. Ian Scholes

    Do you know if sessions done on an 820 would show on Garmin connect training load. The files don’t report the same as with the 945. Will they upgrade firmware or is this only a feature of the newer models. Cheers.

  74. paul4368

    Can you pause a workout (i.e. when coming up to traffic lights, riding through villages etc), but your ride still continues to be recorded in the background? I know you can do this with the Elemnt, but it does not seem to do it on the 530.

    • Ben

      Does anyone else see the inability to pause a workout as a big shortcoming of the 530? It’s easy to follow a workout to a T when it’s on a trainer. Dealing with stop lights, hills, and other unforeseen circumstances usually make it impossible to do outside without this option. I haven’t been able to find a way to do it, which is kind of a drag. I switched to the 530 from an ELEMNT Bolt, which made it easy to pause mid workout, skip, or go back to previous steps. Not having this feature basically makes workout mode worthless outdoors.

  75. LA Nicholson

    Since the activity profiles don’t define sensors and use the sensor pool concept, what do you do if someone wants to ride with you by borrowing your extra bike? Two bike sensors are now connected; how do you pick/define which to use?

  76. Hi,

    did my second ride today and noticed that no performance condition or VO2Max was calculated for any of the two rides. I did wear a HR strap and both rides where far longer than the 20min stated on the Device. It did calculate Training Status though.

    Does it need some time until the two metrics are provided or do I miss something?

    • J. E.

      Ah sorry … I re-read the Manual. I need a powermeter for it to work. I was confused as running Vo2Max is provided using a HR strap alone.

  77. Chris

    On a positive note I used the Trail Forks feature while riding my MTB in the Pisgah National Forrest and it was great to have navigation on top of a mountain.

  78. Angelo

    Hello Ray,
    I currently use the Edge 810. Works well but only thing is the power on/off butten has disintegrated and there is now a hole. Still able to use the inner butten using my glasses.
    Seeing the extensive use of the buttons on the new 530, I was wondering if any similar problems are to be expected. Are the buttons rubber again or hard plastic? Hope to hear from you and thanks for all the reviews you do.

  79. Kent Eriksen

    Hi Ray,

    What is Your experince with the Automatic Emergency Call/mail?
    Is it really working well or more a publicity thing?
    /Kent

    • It actually does work well, and in general I find it actually works better on the Edge series than the Forerunner series (for cycling). In the last 2-3 months I’ve had two false positives from the FR945 while cycling when I did non-ideal things on my road bike going off some edges and stuff. But neither Edge 530 or 830 has triggered when I did that.

  80. New530

    My new 530 showed up today (unexpectedly as it was on backorder). Before I open it, does anyone know if there’s a way to tell from the outside if it’s a bum unit as far as the buttons go? There is a small sticker with a serial number. Was wondering if that gave any indication?

    I would rather return it before opening if I know it’s a bad unit.

  81. Pedja Knezevic

    Hey there,
    yesterday I have just tested my brand new Edge 530 on my indoor trainer (Tacx Vortex Smart), with a predefined workout where I was gonna do a bunch of high intensity intervals where the intensity target in Garmin connect was set to “power” and some recovery in between where the intensity was set to “HR zone 3”.

    During the workout I have seen that some peaks appeared in the power. I was hoping that these were just reading/communication errors between the trainer and the head unit and that they will be filtered out. Turns out there were more than I have seen during the activity and they have been logged porperly in my workout. Turns out that my max power was around 44 000 Watts. See attached screenshot

    I have used an ANT+ antenna to Zwift on PC, used my iPad and my Android over Bluetooth for power settings on structured workouts. Never before did the trainer behave in such a manner. I have checked the firmware version of the trainer, and was up to date before the workout. I am running software verion 3.20 on my Edge 530.

    Now all this scrambled data has screwed up my training status and recovery time on Garmin Connect: 4 days and unproductive.

    Does anybody have any idea what the reason for these peaks could be?

  82. Cedric Charest

    I found out that there is not enough space on the unit to accommodate North America Map & Europe Map, on a brand new device!
    NA map is taking 4.5GB, Europe is 10GB. With all the other data, 1GB is missing. Unit has 16GB total.
    Garmin solution is to delete all previous maps (.img, .gar files) from a computer, download and install the new one from Garmin Connect. Do the same thing when I want to go back. Is it me or this is a complete non-sense on a brand new device?

  83. Kate Enticott

    HI,

    Will my old garmin sensors (from a garmin edge 800) still work with this unit. or do i need to purchase the new style ones. Same with my old heart rate straps?

  84. Thomas

    Ordered my 530 via CT uk and your discount code, thanks a lot.

    Here’s my experience so for after 6 rides, both indoor and outside in different environments (mountains, city…). Updated to 3.20 firmware when receiving it before doing any other configuration / adding sensors. I did not enable wifi yet.

    Sensors/devices
    – Iphone XR
    – TICKR HR strap
    – FSA powerbox powermeter
    – Elite Direto

    Observations:

    – Battery life is superb. Used it for a 210km ride in the mountains with navigation and had over 50% left.
    – No problem at all to connect to any sensors / devices. Experienced no sensor dropouts so far. Finds sensors instantly.
    – Rides are uploaded instantly to garmin connect/strava
    – Button feel is better compared to 520 plus, at least for me.
    – Screen size is noticably bigger than 520 plus and a good compromise between the bigger 1030 screen. I prefer the smaller size of this unit.
    – Screen configuration is made easier because you can now ‘swap’ two fields. I do not understand why this could be a dealbreaker for some people (being able to config the screen via the app). Just do it once right and forget about it afterwards.
    – ClimbPro is really nice. Provides just enough information to be able to pace yourself on a climb. Avg grade info could still be improved somewhat, but the color code scheme and profile seems to be generally spot on. If you climb a lot you will like this feature.
    – Initial course calculation is fast, way better than the 520plus.
    – Turn by turn works very well for me. two beeps when approaching a turn. One beep when you need to turn. Automatic switch to the map and back to your data screen. Nothing wrong with it according to me.
    – Re-routing works, and when it needs to re-calculate this is a lot faster than before. I did find some cases where it still asked me to ‘make a U-turn’ where there would be better options. Also, it sometimes asks me to go back to a previous point in the course, instead of finding the best route to a point further up the course. I hope it could still be improved with updates, but it generally does the job for me.
    – Did not experience any issues with GPS accuracies yet.

    So far, I am very happy I upgraded from the 520plus. For that pricepoint (esp using the additional discount) there is a lot to like about this unit.

  85. Craig Robertson

    Old sensors will still work.

  86. Ian Crawshaw

    Hey Ray,

    I just received my Edge 530 today. Still in the process of getting it set up, but happy to report no issues with the buttons.

    I do have a question about the maps. I bought the unit from a different region, so it came loaded with a bunch of maps that don’t interest me.

    I was planning to download and install maps like we do on the Edge 520 here (link to dcrainmaker.com) but I noticed that there seems to be a bunch more map files in the 530.

    I certainly don’t want to make a mess of things on day 1, so do you have any advice on this?

    Cheers,
    Ian

  87. Bob Conroy

    Anyone having issues reliably connecting their Edge 530 to their Iphone or to a Wahoo TickrX HR strap.
    The HR strap worked for a week or two and even after removing and re-pairing, I’m not having much luck.

    Also I have tried to use the Garmin Support Chat in every browser available to man and it appears to just not work at all.

  88. Phil P

    I got the unit Wednesday as an anniversary/dad’s day gift and took it out into the real world today. I’m coming from a pioneer ca500, so I’ve never had mapping/navigation on a head unit before, so was excited to try out. I loaded a route today, one that I know but occasionally get confused and miss some turns when I’m riding solo. Navigation appeared to work flawlessly. There were a few times I took my own deviations from the route and I had the “u-turn” instruction, and while I found it odd at first, I do kind of get that the first point of logic would be to get you back on to the original route quickly.

    I did one climb and the climbpro came on, unfortunately didn’t think to configure the data beforehand so I switched off so I could see my power.

    So far so good! I don’t think I have the back button issue, having no point of comparison I can’t really tell.

  89. Nes

    When pairing an ANT+/BL sensor, can you choose on the 530 which protocol use to pair and record data? Or there’s a favorite one by default that you can’t modify on the 530?

    Thanks

    • Yup, when you pair any sensor, you’re pairing either the ANT+ side or the BLE side. Generally speaking Garmin products will enumerate the ANT+ sides first when you search for pairing, and then it’ll show BLE sensors.

      However, not always. if it finds BLE sensors as more powerful/first, it’ll show those initially. Generally speaking ANT+ sensors have just the #’s, like 1232 or 923383, whereas BLE sensors will say something like ‘Quarq 12asjg’ or such.

  90. julio formosa

    Got my 530 from CT UK yesterday. My device has the same issue with the down-button – others have with the back-button. I sent an email to garmin support and wait for instructions…

  91. Ole Kruuse

    Hi DC,

    Thank you for the always super product reviews!
    Will the 530 Edge pair with an old HRM belt from a Phoenix 2?

    Cheers
    Ole

  92. Doug Curtis

    Any idea why my 530 would be stuck on this screen with a “power” symbol? After a ride today, everything seemed to work fine, but at the end, I thought I saved the ride and put the unit in the trunk of my car. While I was having lunch at the ride venue, I didn’t see the usual Strava or Garmin notification about the completed ride. When I looked at the unit later and hit the power button, there was a screen about the unit losing connection with the phone. So I decided to power it off. When I did I got the screen with that power symbol, but instead of the screen then going black, that power symbol is still showing an hour or more later. I’m not getting a response from the power button press and plugging it into a USB port isn’t having any effect either.
    Seems I can’t post a picture that I took of the screen,for some reason the [Browse…] button here on the website isn’t clickable, I’ll try adding it in a reply to this comment.

  93. Dave

    I am not sure to buy the Edge 530, one question:
    Assuming I have some .gpx-files (my mountain bike routes) on a Mac/iPhone/iPad/PC, is it possible to send that file wirelessly to the Edge 530 (WiFi/BT)? If yes, which software do I need on these devices?

    • Michael

      Hi Dave,

      this is possible (various ways).
      My personal preferred one would be to load the gpx to “Komoot” on the PC (or Smartphone) and then use the Komoot Connect IQ App on the Edge to transfer it to the device (while the edge is connected to the Smartphone via BT or to the Web via Wifi – both works for the Komoot App but not for i.e. Strava or GCM!). Just make sure you mark the “Offline available” in the IQ App to later find it on the Edge in your tracks.

      BTW. Used the same method already on the 520 (via BT only at that time) and it works for me.

    • Dave

      Thanks for the reply!

      So at the moment I work with gpsies.com, but it seems that there is a way I can transfer my routes. Perhaps I have to switch from gpsies to komoot…

      If I connect the Edge 530 to my computer wirelessly there is no way to transfer the routes just via file explorer?

  94. Scott

    My 530 screen “died” yesterday. It was fine riding home from work on Friday, went out for a ride yesterday, loaded a route, hit “start” and got about 10′ down the road and the screen went all white and kind of pulsating. Unit was still working (could hear beeps, radar notifications, etc). Messed around with it for about 20 minutes trying to do soft resets by holding the power button down for 10 second +. Sometimes I could get it back with a normal screen, and sometimes it booted up with this all white / pulsating screen. Every time I got it back with the “normal” screen, it would appear to be fine, but after I pressed “start”, it would blank out again after a few seconds of riding. Plugged into the computer or charger, screen is fine. Thought maybe it had somehow gotten into battery save mode, but that’s not the case (plus when the screen blanks out, pressing buttons won’t revive it). Noticed too that while not riding, the screen seems fine, but cycling through menus, it will randomly go blank for 5 seconds, then come back to life.

    Garmin was very responsive (Sunday, so it was handled through a chat session) and are shipping me a new unit today. However, still a bit disconcerting on a less than month old unit. I was debating on warrantying the unit anyways, as the buttons all “stick” in that they work fine when pressed, but don’t always pop back out.

  95. marklemcd

    Really strange; I used the 530 to record my trainer workout this morning and when finished it said it uploaded but I couldn’t see it in the Garmin Connect App. I tried to re-upload and it never seemed to do the trick. Later I went to strava and it was posted to strava as usual, except despite me starting the workout on 6/18/2019 at 4:40am Pacific time, it was posted with a start time of 6/15/2019 at 3:40am. So somehow the date on my unit is hosed?

    Weird, right?

  96. Charlie Anderson

    Just received the 530 from Clever Training!
    Is there a way to port bike/activity settings from a 510? Would like that as a starting point at least.

    Charlie

    • Changren Y.

      @Charlie Anderson: The Sports folder on your device contains all the activity profiles. But it may not be a good idea to transfer them from the 510 to the 530 as they may not be compatible. Usually to copy profiles/settings from device to device (same model), you copy the files from the source device to the NewFiles folder on the target device. You will need a computer to perform this.

      link to support.garmin.com

  97. Marcin H

    Hi! I have Training Status question.

    Do I need power meter to get my VO2max estimated and/or Training Status available?

    Since 8th June I have logged 7 activities with my Edge 530, but still have no Trainig Status and no VO2max estimation. Will it appear or it just don’t work without power meter?

    From the test:
    Then there’s VO2Max and FTP, both of which are calculated (FTP calculation requires a power meter (…)
    As I understand: no power meter required to calculate VO2max, right? The Training Satus seems to be dependent on VO2max.

    I only have Training Effect information and Training Load Focus from last 7 days (but this one only on device).

    • Tod

      AFAIK you need to be using both a power meter and a heart rate monitor to get vo2max.

    • J. E.

      Yea I’ve been digging into all the FirstBeat metrics and found it to be pretty obscure. What works with what, what is needed and what its supposed to do. Garmin doesn’t really give you much Info and even the infos on FirstBeats homepage are not that helpfull. The names of the different metrics are pretty similar and not all metrics can be found on all platforms, also Garmin and FirstBeat seem to use different Names for the same thing. And everything becomes super complicated once you consider TrueUp Physio between two devices that have different FirstBeat Metrics implemented.

      So today I had a few hours to spend and disappeared down the rabbit hole of obscure Metrics.

      I’ve created a Graph trying to show the relations between the different metrics. And here is some of the stuff that I have figured out so far. I use an Edge 530 with a Forerunner 235. Be careful I might be wrong at some points as I only figured stuff out reading the online resources and applying logic to the data that I saw.
      (GC: The online platform, GCM: The mobile platform)

      * Exercise Load / EPOC is a Numeric Value calculated per Acivity (in ml/kg). Based on information on the FirstBeat Homepage, “Neural Networks are used to calculate this value” For newer devices (e.g my 530) This value is visible for each Activity in GC, GCM and on device. There is also a special screen in the “My Stats” section of the 530 which shows all EPOCs of the last 7 Days. This also inclues EPOC values from the 235.

      * Training Load is the running average over the EPOCs of the last 7 Days. This includes data from my FR235 even though no EPOC is shown for activities recorded with the FR235. This value is shown in GC (Reports/All Activities/Training Status), There is a section for it in GCM but for me it currently shows “No Data Availible” even though a value is shown in GC. On the 530, there is a dial in the “Training Status” section but it also shows no Data.

      * Training Effect is Based on EPOC but scaled by individual “fitness or activity level” it is measured on a scale from 0 (no effect) to 5 (temporarily overreaching). There are two sub categories
      – Aerobic Training Effect: Based on maximal EPOC reached during the activity
      – Anaerobic TE: Somehow detects short but intense activity (based on power, HR, and speed),
      accumulates those and calculates a Training effect.
      Depending on which of the two is/are supported the Training Effect values for each Activity are shown on the Device, in GCM and GC. Summaries are shown in GCM, GC.

      * Training Status tries to give you an overall picture of where you fitness is going and uses categories like Maintaining, Overreaching, Peaking. It does some magic that is not really described but seems to
      combine changes in VO2max and/or Training Load. You can find it on the Device, GC and GCM. Interestingly all platforms stopped providing a value two days ago even though I did exercise twice in the last seven days. It’s unclear to me if Training Status also includes the data from the 235 but looking at the values that I have seen so far I would say it does.

      * Primary Benefit looks at the balance of your Aerobic and Anaerobic training effect and tries to figure out what the physiological benefit (e.g Recovery, Base, Tempo …) was. These levels are further categorized into three larger groups which are also color coded (Aerobic High, Aerobic Low, Anaerobic)

      * Load Balance looks at the Primary Benefits of the last 40 Days and summarizes the data. It also magically provides some regions in which each of the three categories (Aerobic High, Aerobic Low, Anaerobic) should be.

      As said it’s still unclear how stuff is combined when using TrueUp Physio. e.g Training Status seems to use both your Training load and your VO2max. I don’t have a power meter so that I do not get a cycling VO2max. Is Training Status now based on Training load alone or does it somehow pull in running VO2max from my FR? Also why does GC calculate a Training Load while both GCM and the 530 state that there is not enough data to do so. All of this is barley scratching of the surface. There is also Recovery time, performance condition, FTP and so on and so on.

      Questions over Questions ….

      I mean these metrics are nice and all. Everyone likes some numbers, dials and funky colors but if it is basically impossible to figure out what they mean, how they are connected and what the heck someone should do with them, they end up just being a waste of time that Garmin developers could have spend on fixing bugs.

    • I actually think most of this is fairly well documented by FirstBeat, and a lot of it does add up fairly well.

      Unfortunately however, those documents are scattered about. I’ve got a few in presentations that are super detailed and answer most of your missing pieces. And they presented more at the FirstBeat Summit/Conference last month as well.

      Where it’s messier as you noted, is how it all works with respect to multiple devices within Physio TrueUp, which is more of a Garmin sync thing. I started digging into this with Garmin back in April when I was there. And it’s sorta a case of each time you peel back one layer and think you understand it, there’s another edge case that pops up. It’s never-ending edge cases with different devices, sensors, etc. Some of that is Garmin’s fault, and some of that is just the reality of having a decade+ worth of devices out there.

      And I suspect it’s a situation where they’re damned if the do, and damned if they don’t. From a cleanliness standpoint, they could just say ‘Look, only devices made after 2018, everyone else need not apply’. That’d make it easy. Of course, everyone would be upset. Some of those older devices simply don’t have the features on the device itself to make it work, but Garmin does some magic in the cloud to try and do the bits it can.

      So instead, they’ve taken the approach of trying to fix it in the cloud, which sorta works, but ends up being a house to house fire with various combinations of devices.

      All of which means FirstBeat looks clunky because expectations are tough to solve for, and even more so, variables are super long.

    • J. E.

      Hi Ray,

      thanks for your answer! Yes, you are right. Things are explained on the FirstBeat homepage. But It still took me quite a bit of time to piece things together. Also, the naming of the metrics is …. lets say confusing. Do you think you can share those slides or are they classified?

    • I’m going to see if I can get them shared, or a variant of it.

    • Actually, until that happens. Check out the Summit page here: link to firstbeat.com

      Then click on ‘Content’ (it should take you there, but just in case it doesn’t). The FirstBeat presentations from FirstBeat themselves are usually the first one within each section. Mostly super detailed stuff. Obviously doesn’t cover everything, but will likely keep one distracted for a while. 🙂

    • J. E.

      Nice! thanks Ray,

      finally found time to have a look at them. They are pretty interesting and did solve some of my questions.

      I was also finally able to get a few more rides in. The 530 works really well for me and I’m quite happy with it. I did find a small inconsistency with where the 7day load is shown though. The number and dial is only shown on the dedicated training load page of the 530. There is an additional dial below the training status summery which on my device does not show any data. In your images (Fig. 12 u. Fig.13 of the “Training & Performance Metrics” section) both show a value of 952 (even though the first one is actually missing the pointer on the color scale). Also GCM does report the current 7day load on the Training Status page but if I select it, it states “No data available”.

  98. Bill30306

    so much wanted the 530 to renew faith in Garmin after leaving them for Wahoo. The 530 failed miserably and has been returned to the store. Setup went smoothly except for one random crash. Worked fine during ride. Post ride, did not auto-upload. Called tech support, screen froze, stuck in loading mode on reboot, coudn’t fix it, offered exchange. Opted to stick with Wahoo Elemnt and return 530. Hope Wahoo comes out with radar

  99. Marcin H

    @ I.E.

    Great work 🙂

    It turns out that you can have a Training Status, having an edge 530 and running VO2max. It is still unknown if the Training Status will work if the only activity is cycling without a power meter.
    It is clear, however, that the VO2max cycling requires a power meter because it is not based on speed like running VO2max.

    If Training Status can not work only on the basis of HR, I still think that I should have access to more data than I have. In GCM I can only see what is in the Training Effect tab. No data on other 5 tabs. Without Training Load. Without Training Load Balance. Excercise Load and Primary Benefit – only in the view of a specific activity. No aggregate data.

    The device allows me to see more. Recovery Time works (would be nice to see it in GCM). Training Load Balace (as on Ray’s photos). Training Load (7 days) shows data from individual days, but does not add them and does not indicate whether the load is small, large or optimal. I would like to add that the Training Load and Training Load Balance are hidden under the “empty” Training Status window. Completely pointless.

    So much science and magic from First Beat and I do not get almost anything useful. I did not promise myself a lot of it but I’m disappointed anyway. Hope it will show more data in the future.

    • Daniel

      Funny that I found these comments in this Forum, I have been following up on some of these metrics on the Garmin forum but I am now not getting any reply.

      What got me is Firstbeats interpretation of the scientific measure EPOC – Which needs to be monitored post workout by analyzing respiratory gases. Many of their metrics are based on this.

      Official Definition:
      EPOC is a physiological measure (amount of oxygen consumed in excess after exercise as measured in liters or ml/kg) that that reflects the recovery demand and the disturbance of body’s homeostasis brought by the exercise. Measurement of EPOC has been possible only by analyzing respiratory gases with laboratory equipment, thus being expensive, time consuming and not applicable to everyday purposes.

      Firstbeats implementation –
      “Indirect” EPOC “Prediction” Method Based on Heart Rate Measurement
      EPOC is “predicted” only on the basis of heart rate “derived” information

      https://forums.garmin.com/sports-fitness/cycling/f/edge-530/162648/firstbeat-powered-insights-on-the-garmin-edge-530-and-garmin-edge-830—q-a

      I think many people have these questions as so they should as their training can be based on it.
      I love the magic / science comment because that what it is, or lets just call it indirect magic / science!

      Just by using my simple Brain how can an oxygen measurement metric that needs to be analyzed post workout be derived by Heart Rate during an workout without any post ride analysis? I would love for someone to answer this for me and also how can FirstBeat even call their metric EPOC when it totally is not, and yes I read their whitepaper.

  100. Big Lampar

    My brand new 530 temperature readings are completely way off – it’s 10 celsius higher than real……and the Enter button can be a bit dodgy – it’s just that the profile is very low so you finger will have to press exactly in the centre – sometimes the finger will contact the raised side edge of the unit and it’ll feel like it’s the button but it’s not the button – that’s how low profile the buttons are when you can make a mistake like that.

    • Big Lampar

      I’ve now read the warning in the manual that Temps readings are not meant to be dead accurate. So true – i left the unit outside for half hour and it finally showed temps akin to reality but it started to climb up again – must be due to the internal electronics.

  101. Ric Chavez

    Got to be tough. Nearly all the comments are problems. Received my 530 days ago. Got it with a bikesdirect promo, $239. I didn’t experience any of the issues listed here. Did my first ride today. It’s pretty nice. Love the size and buttons compared to the 520. I have Dura Ace Di2 so the button integration is always cool. Now with multiple function controls on the hood buttons, single press, press and hold, and double press, even cooler. Only thing I don’t like so much is the dark glass on the screen. Not a deal breaker.

  102. Scott H

    So sorry in advance if this is listed and I missed it…but is there a way to transfer all saved device information (power meters, HR monitors, etc) saved in a 520 plus to a new 530?

    • DaveQB

      Perhaps copy (part of) the Garmin folder on the device. I remember seeing “.fit” files named the same as my Activity Profile names. Dunno.

    • Technically speaking it sometimes works to copy some of the Settings.fit over. But practically speaking I’d strongly recommend against doing so.

      Generally speaking it’s one of those things that seems like a good idea at first, and might even work for a while. Then one random day something will crap itself, some setting will be stuck in a weird state, or otherwise unhappy. You’ll have long since forgotten about the tranfser, but in reality it might have just been that which caused it. It’s why Garmin officially doesn’t recommend it. Too many things have dependencies there that aren’t accounted for.

      Of course, it’s also why all of us have been asking for a way to copy things like data field setup and such between devices in a supported way.

  103. Rclouviere

    I switched from the 520 and, for the most part, really like it. However, in using live segments in strava, it is all over the place with what it shows. Many times it gives me “recent” and “last” ride on the segment. I don’t care for either of those. Is there a way to have it show only PRs, or next person up? I can find a way to do this…

    • Ken Kilmurray

      I have not found a way to set a default segment target. You can set it after the sement starts, but requires several buttons which isn’t what I want to be doing when racing a segment. I don’t care about the guy ahead of me on the leaderboard. I want to track progress relative to my PR.

  104. Felix

    My back button stopped working today. Garmin Support here in Germany is not really helpful. They declined to immediately ship out a replacement unit even though I specifically asked for it and offered to supply my credit card data for deposit. Instead I will have to send it in (postage and risk on me) and they will investigate and eventually replace the unit within 2 weeks. This is really disappointing and will leave me 2 weeks without device during cycling high season. Huge disappointment.

  105. Shaun Bell

    Anyone having zoom issues? Took the 530 out for the Merritt Crown race, a 122km 3900m unmarked self supported mtb bit of a nightmare lol. Being unmarked, navigation is pretty important. I would get the zoom level to a scale that worked for the speed, but every time I stopped it would zoom so far out the map became useless. You’d have to go through re zooming in all the repeat at the next stop. I had turned the auto zoom of as well. Super frustrating.

    • Ben

      I had this exact same issue. I asked about this on the Garmin Support Forum as well and got a reply suggesting that I had a corrupt activity profile. I deleted that profile and created another one, and it temporarily fixed the problem but then it returned. I did a hard reset on the 530 after that, and that has solved the issue. Huge hassle having to set the whole thing up again, but at least now the map works as it’s supposed to, instead of switching to the map page and zooming out every time I come to a stop. Link to the topic on the Garmin forum below, if you’d like to post there about your issue as well.

      link to forums.garmin.com

    • Shaun Bell

      Thanks! I’ll give that a try.

    • Shaun Bell

      The hard reset worked for about half an hour lol. I’d stop and the map would stay put. 30min later and back to the way it was. Not liking the using very much.

    • Ben Parman

      Shaun, I forgot to mention that I also switched the ride profile ‘type’ to ‘road’ and disabled the Trailforks map layer. I disabled the mountain bike profile because the ridiculous “NICE JUMP!” notifications were making me insane, and the only way I could find to get rid of them was to change the ride profile to road (thanks, Garmin…). I was also suspicious that the “ForkSight” feature, courtesy of the Trailforks map layer, was causing the unwanted zooming out of the map. I would try doing those two things as well. Good luck, I was on the verge of returning my 530 when I was having this problem.

    • Shaun Bell

      The Trailforks mapping was the main reason for my purchase lol! But you’re right, nice jump makes me crazy!

  106. Craig Robertson

    Have used the Edge 530 for a few rides now and really liking it. Didn’t think it would be too much of an upgrade over the 520, but i was wrong. Screen just seems to be a lot easier to read in all conditions so far and a couple of the screens i have 10 items showing.

    Only had issue on last nights cycle, unit turned itself off after the 2nd climb that ClimbPro captured. Not sure why it did it, but ride was still saved once i turned unit back on so i was able to resume with only a little time lost..

  107. Mirko

    How accurate is the current gradient % on mtb trails? I have an old school VDO cyclocomputer which measures that using an internal inclinometer I guess (no GPS, but it might be calculating the change in elevation over distance, not 100% sure) so pretty accurate. What about the Garmin 530?

  108. ARC99

    My Edge 530 is now on the 3.50 firmware. I am still getting issues with installing software updates from Garmin Express (routable maps for Australia/New Zealand, Trailforks and “Other Items”). I keep on getting this error that says “Some files could not be sent to your device –> sports (Transfer Error)”.

    Anyone got a solution for this?

  109. Andy

    Anyone had issues with rerouting whilst following a planned route?

    Riding in an unfamiliar area yesterday, missed a turn as didn’t get an alert, just an off course notification and thought I’d carry on and let it recalculate and follow that – it then spent close to two hours trying to send me down farm paths and grassed walking routes totally unsuited to a road bike!

    It was useless, ended up doing an extra 40 miles by time I finished – had it on road cycling, locked to roads and avoiding trails and unpaved roads so I’m at a loss what went wrong.

    • Shaun Bell

      Not cool. I did a 122km mtb race and I got lost so many times it was ridiculous.

    • Grant

      I had no issue with the re-routing specifically, but I have had issues when following Strava routes loaded through Connect IQ. I too missed a turn and despite the unit beeping at me non-stop for an hour, I decided to ‘wing it’. Problem is now that the .fit file generated for my ride is 26MB for some reason and too big to load up to Strava, Garmin, Training Peaks, etc so is absolutely useless to me as I can’t do anything with it… Was your .fit file supersized also?

    • Andy

      I’ve just checked and it was a fairly standard size, it auto uploaded to Strava, Training Peaks and Sporttracks without issue.

  110. DaveQB

    Typo alert:

    “Edge 830 has can do address-specific routing…”

    I thought it was going to say “Edge 830 has a can-do attitude…” 🙂

  111. Andrew B

    Is anyone having trouble with training load not calculating on some rides? Both my 530 and forerunner 945 have recently stopped calculating training load after a ride. I did a whole reset on both and now the 530 seems to be calculating for now but not the forerunner 945. The only correlation I can find is when training load isn’t calculated the respiration rate is either faulty (completely flat lined for the entire ride) or isn’t calculated at all. Out of ideas for how to fix it.

  112. Klaus F.

    I received mit Edge 530 today. During my first trip the device turned off while I was following a predifined route. I had this problem before with my Edge 810 and there this seemed to be well known link to triathlon-szene.de. (This behaviour was less often, when I changed the setting of map detail to less.)
    Therefore I now ordered then 530. Seems to be that the new models still have the same issue.
    Anyone else having this issue? Any idea to solve it?
    Thanks!

  113. Nenad

    I have used it for two weeks now. Mainly works flawlessly. Climbpro is OK, nutrition / hydration alerts Smart mode is fine and useful, acclimation / adaptation is also working nice, battery is perfect, a lot of new features and improvements :).
    I tried BLE connection with Power2Max NG, working fine, but I do not see data for Torque and Pedal Smoothness. One of the reasons for buying it was BLUETOOTH SMART. Also one time stopped collecting BLE data from PM in the middle of a ride so I switched the connection to ANT+.

    Have you idea why I do not see and what I need to have data for Torque or Pedal Smoothness?

    • For power meters, you definitely always want to use ANT+. And your scenario actually shows why. See, the Bluetooth Smart power meter spec doesn’t include Torque Effectiveness or Pedal Smoothness. So if you use the BLE side of a power meter instead of the ANT+ side, you won’t get those metrics.

      Ironically enough, the most recent firmware for the Edge 530/830 in the last few days actually changes the default behavior (semi-back) to the normal which is to show you the ANT+ sensor side as a priority so one doesn’t accidentally pick that. While it’s good that Garmin allows BLE sensors of course, this isn’t really a Garmin problem to solve. The BLE spec for power meters is generally regarded as a decision by committee mess, and every power meter company I know of says to use ANT+ instead.

    • NENAD

      OK.

      But how do you mean “Bluetooth Smart power meter spec doesn’t include Torque Effectiveness or Pedal Smoothness”?

    • Yup, Power2max’s post is roughly correct, but skips over the details. Specifically that the ANT+ spec includes those metrics, but that the Bluetooth Smart spec doesn’t (it just has power balance and total power, plus cadence. And in some cases some other metrics).

      Sorta like how US English and British English are sorta the same but sorta not. They say funky things that don’t really translate in the US. Roughly. Sorta.

    • NENAD

      Here you are P2M support explanation 🤔.

    • So the first paragraph of their response is all correct.

      However, the second paragraph is not. None of it is. Garmin supports Torque Effectiveness and Pedal Smoothness via ANT+ just fine, and all other companies implement it just fine. And it records just fine, and is viewable on Garmin Connect just fine.

      Not sure what to say there. 🙁

  114. Ian Crawshaw

    Couple of weeks in and the 530 is still working fine.

    However, I’m having a problem finding a menu option that should be there.

    During a ride we should be able to press the top right button (3 dots on it) and in the menu there should be an option to set the elevation with a known ‘good value’

    The 530 manual refers to this, my 520 used to have it also, but I don’t see the option on the actual 530 device.

    Am I missing something, anyone can point me in the right direction?

    • Changren Y.

      @Ian Crawshaw: This menu does not exist in the 530, even though it’s in the manual. I contacted Garmin Support and the support person was able to verified it does not exist. In the meantime, if you do want to set the elevation, you can do it via the Saved Locations menu:

      Menu –> Navigation –> Saved Locations –> Save My Location –> Edit –> Change Elevation

    • Changren Y.

      @Ian Cranshaw: This is how you set the elevation (from a comment left by georgiawx on the Garmin 530 forum):

      “Before starting a ride, get the computer so the data screens are visible by pressing the enter button to select a profile, then once you have selected the profile you want, the data screens will be displayed. You can then scroll down to the elevation screen and press the enter button to access the menu. Scroll down to “Set Elevation”.

      You can also do the after starting a ride by pausing and then scrolling down to the elevation screen and repeating the steps above once there.”

    • Ian Crawshaw

      Thanks for this workaround, I can do what I want to do now.

      Seems you need to have the elevation screen on in your activity profile to access this. I’d disabled the screen because I ride in a predominantly flat area.

  115. peterpan

    Hey Rainmaker,
    thanks for the amazing test – i was eating it!!
    I still got a few questions:

    – when I am In “following a gpx track” mode

    x how can I see the full high profile and not just an extract?

    x in map mode it a always switching between “north mode” & “turning map into direction mode” – is this normal behavior?

    x when I am leaving the track I want a tone: is there an option to adjust this in the Manu somehow?

    Cheers

  116. DaveQB

    Thanks for this review Ray.
    The main feature I was reading the review for was Battery Saver mode and how it functioned for you. It looks like you didn’t cover it or is my CTRL+F skills lacking?
    Thanks

  117. Grant

    I recorded a ride today on my Edge 530 and I attempted to follow a Strava Route through Connect IQ. The resulting .fit file after saving the ride is ~26MB in size, as opposed to the usual 400-600KB of my other similar rides. As a result I cannot upload this file now to Garmin or Strava and view my ride data at all.
    Is there any reason the file size would be so big when following a route? and more importantly, is there anyway I can strip out the route following data from my .fit file and still keep all other data – speed, power, elevation, HR, etc?
    I am currently on cycling holiday in Italy and this ride was up Tre Cime di Lavaredo so would be super disappointed if I cannot view my ride at all.
    Many thanks, Grant.

    • DaveQB

      Just a stab in the dark, but maybe run it through fitfiletools.com and try and strip out something or trim it and see if it produces a smaller file? Or try uploading to another platform, like TrainerRoad? Contact Garmin support?

    • Grant

      Thanks Dave.

      fitfiletools has a size limit of 20MB. Garmin support have been absolutely useless – 3 emails back and forward and they keep copying and pasting the same “Error Occurs When Manually Uploading Activity Data to Garmin Connect” from their FAQ’s, without ever answering my questions…

      Cheers, Grant.

    • That’s super weird, I’ve never seen a .FIT file that big before.

      Any chance you had a Connect IQ app (beyond Strava) installed or running?

    • Grant

      Thanks for the reply DC.

      I’m 99% sure there was nothing else running to make the .fit file so big. I like to keep things pretty clean and simple usually. To test, I also did a shorter ride following a route which was still 8MB (!!), but managed to upload eventually. Needless to say I have now ditched the route following…

      I have my fingers crossed there might be a way to strip out the route following data similar to how fitfiletools can strip out power, HR, elevation, etc…

      Cheers, Grant.

  118. Nissim

    great review, looking forward to get my new unit soon

  119. David

    Hi Ray,

    your Work is highly appreciated – hope to give yo a tiny bit back:

    Actually, you CAN Export / import Garmin settings and cycling profiles – though this is NOT recommended (but known) by the Garmin service:

    You just have to connect your edge as a hard drive on your PC/Mac and go to the Garmin/Settings folder (right, for settings), to the Garmin/Sports folder for the profiles.

    Here you can copy your recent *.fit files (yes, the settings are also fit files) and paste them anywhere safe – or already take your saved settings and drop them here.
    Tested, works for me – feel free to retry.

    Nevertheless, I suggested to Garmin Service to enable an option to export/import with less hassle 😉

    Best regards
    David

    • DaveQB

      Yes I mentioned this and Ray replied saying it is never a good idea. It was comment #861

      Quote:

      “Technically speaking it sometimes works to copy some of the Settings.fit over. But practically speaking I’d strongly recommend against doing so.

      Generally speaking it’s one of those things that seems like a good idea at first, and might even work for a while. Then one random day something will crap itself, some setting will be stuck in a weird state, or otherwise unhappy. You’ll have long since forgotten about the tranfser, but in reality it might have just been that which caused it. It’s why Garmin officially doesn’t recommend it. Too many things have dependencies there that aren’t accounted for.

      Of course, it’s also why all of us have been asking for a way to copy things like data field setup and such between devices in a supported way.”

  120. MJ

    Obviously Garmin does not inform it’s support staff about the button issues with the 530. Purchased mine here in Australia, discovered the return /back didn’t work so I called Garmin support, they basically doubted everything I said about the issue and how the unit could be broken after having it for one day, absolutely clueless. Now have to go through the hassle of returning the dud unit and wait for another unit and hope that it works.

  121. Mark

    Perhaps someone here can help with the following.. I’m having issues using the “MTB Trail Navigation” feature on the Edge 530, it’s not working. (same as on the Edge 830).

    Whenever I select “MTB Trail Navigation” I need to select a start location on the map, I select a location next to a trail (Trailforks map is on). Difficulty is set to cover all options. Distance is set to ~10km (also tried other values with no luck). I keep on getting the same error message, “No routes found. Adjust the start point of your search to be in a trail network, and try again.”

    I think the firmware has a bug, the system can’t find the trails that are visible on the map. And what is the Garmin definition of a “trail network”??

    The Trailforks app has been activated under Connect IQ. I am able to download and load trails using the Trailforks IQ app, but not’s how I want to use the device. The device has a dedicated TF map that should be useable.

    All maps are activated. I’ve tried switching the cycling ones off, but nothing changed.

    The system is running firmware 3.50, maps are updated (cycling and trailforks maps updated with Garmin Express to 2019 versions, updated on 07-July-2019).

  122. Martin

    One thing I like about all Garmin devices I had is that they appear as “mass storage device” on your computer when connected via USB. That makes it very easy to use on them with Linux, e.g. if you want to copy a track in a gpx file you downloaded somewhere to the “New Files” folder. Can anybody confirm that this is possible with the 530 (and/or 830) as well?

  123. Martin

    What is the beeper volume like when giving turn-by-turn-directions? I’m thinking about upgrading from the Edge 520 because it’s beeper volume is really very low, which is annoying espacially for turn-by-turn directions.

  124. Jérôme Grand

    Hello

    Acording to me, my 530 doesnt ignore 0 while doing average cadence calculation

    while I ride with both 520 and my new 530, live cadence are equal, whereas average is always lowest on 530

    I already try to push this setting again, but that change nothing

    Next tride I will take count with 0 and see what happen

    Anyone else having this issue ?

    Riv

    • Kim Robberecht

      I noticed when doing the descent of galibier last weekend that cadence was at “1” instead of “0” when keeping my legs completely still.

      As it was a really long ride (Marmotte) I have no idea cadence at the end was normal or not

  125. JamesT

    Thanks for the great review.
    One question – apologies if I missed it.
    Do you know if it is possible to upload additional maps to a 530 e.g. European maps to a US unit or vice versa? I read on another site that this was not possible on the 520 (only 820). Thanks

  126. KuB3

    How I can get directions from an address on 530? without using map on Edge?
    Maybe there an app on Connect IQ to search on mobile app and export the map to the Edge?

    • DaveQB

      Yes. Try this Connect IQ app.
      link to dynamic.watch

      My experience, using an Edge 520, it doesn’t give turn by turn. Just 2 points, start and finish. But it works. With the Edge 520 Plus or 530 having routing ability, it may work better…..

    • KDeWeerd

      I use the GRouteLoader Widget. That combines some interesting features, and being a widget can be run while an activity is in progress.

      When combined with gexporter on Android, you can even send routes from your phone directly onto the 530 with going through the Connect app/website.

    • Leon

      I am using ride with gps website on the phone and IQ app on the 530. On the website via phone put in the two postcodes or business (start and to) and save as a route. It will automatically appear in the ride with gps IQ app in the 530. Delete the route online when no longer needed and it will disappear from the device.

    • JeffB

      Is there any way of doing this without knowing your starting point? Ie…from where I am now, to an address?

  127. Davis

    the Garmin 530 is having some serious GPS issues. I’ve used it for 5 rides, and two of them have had pretty bad GPS tracks. I wait until it says the signal is locked before riding.

    Out and back ride. The “out” portion was recorded perfectly, but the “back” end up having the track save north of the actual road.
    530 track: link to strava.com
    500 track: link to strava.com

    Loop hike (530 was attached to top of backpack with direct line to the sky)
    530 track: link to strava.com (they only thing correct was the start)
    Fenix 5: link to strava.com

    • Doug Curtis

      Are all the GPS units set to the same Satellite sources, either GPS, GPS+GLONASS, or GPS+GALILEO ?

    • Davis

      The 500 supports only GPS (less accurate), and the Fenix 5 was set to the same GPS+GLONASS as the 530.
      Auto-pause isn’t enabled on the 530 (originally the Garmin customer service rep thought the issue with the loop hike was auto-pause)

  128. Johnny

    Hi Ray,

    I was pestering Garmin on facebook asking about when the mtb features would come to the edge 1030. They indicated that they have no idea what I was talking about. I shared your article, but it seem strange they would play dumb. Do you have a timeline for the mtb features to come to the edge 1030?

  129. Jon

    Do the Garmin Connect features that you mention above require an ongoing subscription payment, or are they perpetually free for owners of the Garmin unit? (My Specialized helmet comes with an ANGI crash sensor similar to the one described above that’s supposed to notify someone if a crash is detected, but it’s totally useless unless you keep paying Specialized an expensive annual subscription fee for the companion app.)

    • Mark

      no subscription required. If Garmin decide to do so, I’m ditching their devices. Unless the hardware is free, I wouldn’t buy a device requiring a recurring subscription fee.

    • Also of note is that Specialized ditched the payment required for ANGI back a month or two ago, assuming you bought a Specialized Helmet (as opposed to just the pod for a 3rd party helmet).

    • Shaun Bell

      The crash detection is making my nuts. Rip through some high speed rock garden and it’s always freaking out that I’ve crashed. I turn it off, but it just turns itself back on. Also, it would be nice to turn off the jump feedback. 50 to 100 notifications gets pretty annoying. And still no word back from Garmin about the crazy zooming out…

    • Jon

      DC Rainmaker wrote:
      > Also of note is that Specialized ditched the payment
      > required for ANGI back a month or two ago

      Wow, that’s great news! I wonder why Specialized hasn’t spread the news better. I bought my ANGI helmet just a few weeks ago, and the stuff in the box said I needed a subscription after the free trial. You think they’d at least put a sticker on the box saying the service is now free.

      Thanks for the heads up, D.C.

  130. charlie

    Hi Ray, have you seen any issues with pairing with Polar OH1 heart rate monitor? My Edge sees it as a found device but will not mark it as connected. OH1 is working, pairs with other devices just fine. Garmin support just says ‘oh well it’s a third party device’… any ideas would be much appreciated.

    • Charlie

      forget this, I got it to work! garmin crazy menu system and different buttons to the 130 argghh