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Week in Review–June 6th, 2021

WeekInReview22

The Week in Review is a collection of both all the goodness I’ve written during the past week around the internet, as well as a small pile of links I found interesting – generally endurance sports related. I’ve often wondered what to do with all of the coolness that people write, and while I share a lot of it on Twitter and Facebook, this is a better forum for sending it on to y’all. Most times these different streams don’t overlap, so be on the lookout at all these places for good stuff!

So with that, let’s get into the action!

Sports Tech Deals:

There’s a number of strong sports tech deals out there right now, primarily tied to Fathers Day coming up.

ProductSale PriceAmazonSale Notes
Nespresso Vertuo Pop+ Deluxe Kit - 35% off!$129⚡ Let's be honest: This place runs on Nespresso (or, well, the knock-off pods we buy). But, the machine is Nespresso. Without it, reviews most definitely would not get done (and certainly not on time). This is a pretty sweet deal if you ask me!
9th Gen Apple 10.2-inch iPad (Wi-Fi, 64GB) - $75 off!$249⚡ This is an awesome deal. I use my iPad primarily for TrainerRoad as well as Zwift when not with a larger display. I also occasionally use it for other apps, namely Indievelo, Kinomap, Rouvy, and Peloton. But I pretty much test every smart trainer app on it. For all these cycling apps, the graphics capabilities is really pretty irrelevant, so having the absolute top-end/latest model won't make any difference. I prefer the budget options.
Amazon Echo Dot Kids - 50% off$27Despite being a tech-focused dude, our kids don't actually get much tech in their lives. However, we got these last Christmas for them in their rooms, to play music. They do lots of other things, but our kids mostly just use it to play music (from Spotify and Apple Music too), and occasionally they ask it questions. It has all the parental controls I want, so it locks it down from bedtime/etc...For $27? Solid deal (The coolest 'nice touch' feature is that if you whisper to it, it'll whisper back...in the owl kids voice it has.)
Anker Prime Battery Bank (27,650mAh) - $60 off$119I've been using this on my hikes/treks/daily life since this winter, and have been super happy with it. I can charge drones from it on treks, as well as just a crapton of other devices (wathces/action cams/etc), but it's not too terrible on weight. For day to day life, I use it on planes and such as a laptop battery bank (supports 100w charging). Super happy with it.
Apple AirPods Pro (2nd Gen with USB-C) - $90 off$168⚡ I've been using these since last fall, after years of using the Beats Studio Buds...man, these things rock. Sure, they're good for sports, but frankly, I use them on planes, editing, and such more than anything else.
Apple AirTags (4-Pack) - 11% off!$88⚡I make no secret how much I utilize AirTags, mainly, cause they've saved my butt numerous times already. We have them in every suitcase, and every backpack, and every bike bag. They're also hidden in most of our bikes (sometimes two of them). We were able to get our cargo bike back when it disappeared, as well as figure out when all our suitcases went missing during an annual family vacation where they were (for 5 days), and plan appropriately. Seriously, just get them...for everything.
Apple Airpods (3rd Gen) - $40 off!$119
Apple Watch SE (2022/2nd gen) - $70 off
$249/$299 (cellular)
$169⚡⚡This is now the lowest price we've ever seen the Apple Watch SE (2nd Gen) - a very solid deal, especially with the new WatchOS 11 features around Training Load, Vitals, offline mapping, and more.
Apple Watch Series 9 - $120 off
$399/$499 (cellular)
$279⚡This is the lowest price to date we've seen on the Apple Watch Series 9, and notable, given the huge slate of software updates just annoucned at WWDC last month, coming to the Series 9
Apple Watch Ultra 2 - $100 off$699⚡ This is by far the lowest price we've seen an Apple Watch Ultra 2, to date. Very solid deal, and like the Apple Watch Series 9, it too is getting a huge slate of new features just announced last month for WatchOS 11.
Balega Comfort Running Socks - 34% off
$15
$10This is the singular piece of apparel that's lasted the longest in my collection - some 15-16 years of buying the same socks. Heck, some of them are probably half that old. EIther way, this be the ones I use. Love them (well, except for hiking and trail running, then I use other stuff that goes higher).
Beats Fit Pro - 25% off$149
Beats Studio Buds - 47% off
$149
$79
DJI Action 4 - $100 off$299
DJI Air 3 Combo Package - $300 off$1,239If you're looking for an extra zoom lens on the drone (beyond a Mini series drone), and full obstacle avoidance, then the Air 3 is your best bet.
DJI Mini 3 with RC-N1 Remote -$70 off!$349
DJI Mini 4K Drone - $60 off$229This is an incredible deal. I actually picked up one of these back a few months ago to test (haven't quite finished that review), but I've used it in a boatload of review shots since then. Despite me owning all the DJI drones (seriously), this is by far the best value there is.
FORM Smart Swim 2 Goggles - $20 off$229
FORM Swim 1 Goggles (with heads-up display) - $30 off$140
Fitbit Ace LTE Kids Activity Smartwatch - 22% off$179⚡This was just announced last month, and this is the first sale we've seen on it. I've (via my kids) been testing it, and am kinda mixed on it. But if you're looking for a deal - it's here!
Fitbit Charge 6 - 38% off!
$159
$99This is the go-to sale price for the Fitbit Charge 6. It happens often, but it still doesn't take away from the fast that it's argueably the best bang for your buck fitness tracker out there.
Fitbit Sense 2 - $70 off$179This is the lowest price we've seen to date for the Fitbit Sense 2, surpassing the previous low record of $199
Fitbit Versa 4 - $40 of$159This is an OK deal. I'd probably just spend the extra $20 to get the Fitbit Sense 2 currently on sale.
Garmin Edge 1030 Plus Bundle with all Sensors - 44% off$389I'm a bit conflicted on this one. First up, it's a sensor bundle with HR strap, speed sensor, and cadence sensor. But at the same time, it's the Edge 1030 Plus, which isn't receiving updates anymore. Whereas the deal for the Edge 1040 (no sensors) is incredible at $449, and that's still getting *new features updates* and likely will for the next year or so. Your choice, but I'd personally skip the sensors (since your watch likely already can broadcast HR).
Garmin Edge 1040 Cycling GPS - $150 off!$449The deal is back! After we saw this deal in May, it's returned for Amazon Prime Day. This is notable because the Edge 1050 has launched and with it, the Edge 1040 got plenty of new features as well, kept largely in sync between the two. Definitely a steal.
Garmin Enduro 2 - $300 off
$1,099
$599I'm not really sure if I'd call this $500 off like Amazon, as this is on sale a fair bit. That said, if battery life is your key concern - this solves that concern. I did a 8-day 180km trek (with navigation and all features enabled) on this watch on a single charge. Note: This is still available, simply select the 'Other Sellers on Amazon' on right side of product page, and you'll see it there, new from Amazon, for delivery next week. Amazon will automatically prioritize faster shipment over lower price. Enjoy!
Garmin Epix (Gen 2) - $400 off!$499⚡⚡⚡ This is a crazy super strong deal. Note that the Epix Gen 2 has continued to receive virtually all of the Epix Pro new features firmware updates, including new bits just this weekend. ***Note: This is still available, simply select the 'Other Sellers on Amazon' on right side of product page, and you'll see it there, new from Amazon, for delivery next week. Amazon will automatically prioritize faster shipment over lower price. Enjoy!***
Garmin Epix Sapphire Titanium (Gen 2) - $400 off!$544⚡⚡⚡ This is a crazy super strong deal (insane), and this unit is the Sapphire edition, which has multi-band GNSS on it. Note that the Epix Gen 2 has continued to receive virtually all of the Epix Pro new features firmware updates, including new bits just this weekend. ***Note: This is still available, simply select the 'Other Sellers on Amazon' on right side of product page, and you'll see it there, new from Amazon, for delivery next week. Amazon will automatically prioritize faster shipment over lower price. Enjoy!***
Garmin Fenix 7 Solar Sapphire - $250 off!$549⚡⚡ This continues to be a crazy deal, since this is the sapphire edition, which has multiband/dual-GNSS, and also still gets all the latest firmware/feature updates of the newer Garmin Fenix 7 Pro.
Garmin Forerunner 255 Music - 45% off$219⚡⚡This is argueably one of the best budget deals there is, this go around!
Garmin Forerunner 955 - $180 off!$319This is one of Garmin's most popular running watches, and it's down to an absoultely insane price. I often use this in my accuracy testing comparisons when validating other watches, due to it's very strong GPS performance. Note this is the base edition without solar. It'd be hard to find any better deal in sports watches today, from any company (given this has full mapping, tons of new features even this week, etc...). ***Note: This is still available, simply select the 'Other Sellers on Amazon' on right side of product page, and you'll see it there, new from Amazon, for delivery next week. Amazon will automatically prioritize faster shipment over lower price. Enjoy!***
Garmin HRM-DUAL (ANT+/Bluetooth Smart Strap) - 32% off!
$69
$47This is Garmin's ideal strap if you just want an affordable dual ANT+/Bluetooth Smart option, especially when it's on sale like this - it really becomes one of the best deals out there right now for a multi-connection strap.
Garmin Instinct Crossover Solar - $200 off!$299This is by far the lowest price we've seen this.
Garmin Varia RCT715 Camera Radar - $50 off$349
Garmin Varia RVR315 Radar - $50 off$99⚡ This is Garmin's radar without the light, so it's a bit smaller as a result. Same radar tech though, and compatible with Garmin/Stages/Hammerhead/Wahoo bike computers.
Garmin Varia Radar (RTL515) - $50 off$149This is Garmin's standalone radar+taillight option, and $149 is pretty much the standard sale-price.
Garmin Vivoactive 5 - $35 off!
$299
$265This is Garmin's newest unit in the Vivoactive 5 realm, and is essentially a mini Venu 3.
Garmin inReach Messenger - $70 off$229
GoPro Hero 12 Black - $100 off!$299This is the lowest price we've seen on the Hero 12 Black to date, easily surpassing Black Friday last year. It's what I use for all my action cam shots.
Google Pixel Watch 2 - $100 off!$299While Google has already announced an early August date for new Pixel devices, the company has also largely brought every feature of the Pixel Watch 2 to the Pixel Watch 1, so I'm not super worried about them cutting off support soon.
HoverAir X1 Drone - $160 off!$309⚡⚡ This has become one of my favorite drones, given it's tiny size (fits in my running shorts pockets) and ease of use. The further updated price of $309 (from $359 at start of sale) is incredible, and by far the lowest price to date.
Insta360 Ace Pro Action Cam - $100 off$349I've been using this a fair bit over the past winter, and it's a solid little contender. In particular, the Garmin/Apple integration to overlay data onto your videos is silly easy to use, and super quick as well.
Lasko High Velocity Pro-Performance Fan (U15617) - 27% off$47This is one of the most popular indoor trainer fan companies out there, which rivals the Wahoo Headwind fan but cost a fraction of the price. Of course, it lacks ANT+/Bluetooth integration, but realistically if you really want that you can add a smart outlet for $10 to toggle it on/off from your phone if need be. It's one of the ones in my rotation.
Nest Cam 2-Pack (Indoor/Outdoor using batteries)$249I use a fleet of Nest Cam's, both at the DCR Cave and at home. They obviously do the security thing, but I've also used them countless times when something incredibly stupid-hilarious happens at the DCR Cave, and this is the only proof of it!
Ooni Fyra 12 Wood Fired Outdoor Portable Pizza Oven - $60 off!$239⚡ I know, I know, I still owe everyone a review. Nonetheless, nearly 3 years later, I love this thing. We use it for more than pizza too, notably steaks (to get a really crispy sear). But a lot of pizza. It's completely portable, even easily fitting on our cargo bike. Note that I went with this model, the cheapest one they make, as I realized that buying the higher-end models that that support gas didn't make much sense for me. I have a gas grill already (and could easily just put a stone on it). Similarly, while a large 16" is appealing, realistically I've found this 12" more than enough for pretty substantial personal pizzas (and it makes it easier to handle). Full in-depth review pretty soon...probably. Also, $239 appears to be the lowest price ever.
Oura Ring Gen3 Horizon - $75 off$425
Peloton Bike+ is $400 off$1,995This is a solid deal for the Bike+, albeit largely the normal sale/deal price. Both my wife and I use both the Peloton Bike+ and the regular Bike (one at home, one at office) on a weekly basis. We like both. The Bike+ is more accurate than the regular bike, and also has a bigger screen and automatic resistance control. That said, the core Peloton experience isn't any different between the two - it's the same platform there.
Peloton Tread - $300 off!$2,695This is my main treadmill at home, and I really like it. I've got no complaints about it, and am happy I went with the smaller Peloton Tread versus the bigger unit.
Polar H10 Chest Strap (Dual ANT+/Bluetooth Smart) - 25% off
$89
$75This is a great dual ANT+/Bluetooth Smart (with two Bluetooth Smart connections) chest strap that you'll often find me using as a reference strap in heart rate sensor testing. We only tend to see deals on it around Black Friday, always topping out around 20%.
Polar H9 Chest Strap - $10 off$50If you're looking for a good solid high-quality strap, that does both ANT+ & Bluetooth Smart, for a reasonable price...look no further than the Polar H9
Polar Verity Sense - 15% off
$99
$84
SHOKZ OpenFit - Open-Ear Headphones - 31% off$124
SHOKZ OpenRun Pro - Open-Ear Bluetooth Bone Conduction Headphones - 31% off$124
SONOS Roam 2 - 20% off$143We have a few SONOS speakers around the house and DCR Cave (the Ikea variants at DCR Cave), but by far our favorite is the Roam, which we take outdoors into the garden during the summer, beach vacations, AirBNB's, etc... It has a battery in it, and also connects to both WiFi and Bluetooth. Love, love, love. I think the main reason I love it, is that we heavily use it in summer, so...kinda reminds me of summer.
Samsung Galaxy Watch6 - 47% off$159
Samsung T7 Portable SSD 1-2TB - 50% off$79I use a small fleet of these T7 SSD's for various video projects, alongside the Sandisk SSD's. I literally have one of each color, just to keep things simple. They work great for quick storage. Note: Different colors have different sale prices - I don't understand why. Also, the 1TB are only $79, 50% off.
Samsung T9 SSD (1-4TB) - up to 43% off$126I use a literal flotilla of these small SSD's for all my photo/video projects until they get moved off to the NAS system (Synology) for longer term storage. I have T5/T7 units, and are picking up a few of the larger T9 ones given the sale prices. Love them, incredibly fast and reliable.
SanDisk 256GB Extreme PRO SD Cards - 49% off$31⚡I use the SanDisk Extreme Pro SD Cards exclusively for all my video/photo shooting on my Panasonic GH5 and Nikon cameras (video and stills), including up to 6K recording with the GH5. I've mostly used 128's, but more and more lately I'm filling up cards faster with higher bitrates, so this sale is gonna have me pickup a bunch of the 256GB ones instead. The 128GB/ 512GB/1TB ones are also on sale too viathe same link. Note that usually I wait till these are about $40-45, so this is a fantastic deal and I'll be filling up.
Scosche RHYTHM+ 2.0 ANT+ & Bluetooth HR Monitor
$79
$23This isn't the newest chicken on the block, but for $23?!?! That's a crazy good price for something that's actually pretty darn accurate. Really accurate.
Wahoo BOLT V2 - $45 off
$279
$234
Wahoo ELEMNT ROAM V2 - 15% off
$399
$339
Wahoo KICKR Core Smart Trainer - $75 off!
$499
$425This is technically the lowest price we've ever seen for this traine as far as I know. It's still a very solid trainer, and the cornerstone to the new Zwift Ride bike as well (it uses the KICKR CORE as the base). It works with the Wahoo KICKR CLIMB too.
Wahoo KICKR ROLLR - $90 off
$599
$509
Whoop 4.0 with 1-year subscription - 17% off$199This brings down the 1-year price to $17/month, which is the lowest it's been (only way to get that is normally a 24-month membership).
Withings Body Comp WiFI Scale - 25% off$149
Withings Body Smart WiFI Scale - 20% off$79

DCRAINMAKER.COM Posts in the Past Week:

Here’s all the goodness that ended up on the main page this past week, albeit, a heavy Garmin week. As usual, I can’t really control when companies decide to announce their products. Last week was a heavy Wahoo week. Tit for tat.

Wednesday: Garmin Forerunner 55 In-Depth Review
Wednesday: Garmin Forerunner 945 LTE In-Depth Review
Friday: An Explainer: Garmin’s New Wearables LTE Strategy

YouTube Videos This Past Week:

Here’s what hit the tubes over on the You of Tube, definitely don’t forget to subscribe there to get notified of videos the second they hit!

Stuff I Found Interesting Around The Interwebs:

Here’s a not-so-small smattering of all the random things that I stumbled on while doing my civic duty to find the end of the Internet. Also, there’s a few things this week that were actually from a week or two ago – I’m just catching up on this list:

1) Substantial Strava updates this week: Or rather, what Strava is calling their “biggest update for 2021”. Honestly, I think that’s overselling it a bit. I like the new segment cards and all – it’s tidy, but that mostly assumes you care about segments (for which, I simply do not). Then there’s the challenges piece, which again, is cool if that’s your jam. But since you can only add a limited number of people, it’s not functional for clubs/teams/larger groups. I get it, you have to launch somewhere, but I remain perplexed at how both Strava and Zwift keep missing the boat on larger team/club dynamics here. In any case, if you want the full scoop, hit up Lama’s video below (oh, and related, I still use the now year old one-off routing pieces on a weekly+ basis, including for large chunks of the ride I’m about to head out on now):

2) 2022 Women’s WorldTour Calendar Includes Tour de France Femmes: I’m super excited about this. It’s waaaaaaay overdue. While it’s ‘only’ a week, it’s a start, and it’s a good place to develop an audience. It’ll run directly after the men’s, starting July 24th to July 31st. We won’t see the course till later this year, so that too is an unknown. It’ll be interesting to see what they do here logistically, as starting the same day the men finish means that virtually every bit of media and cycling word is in Paris for the finish. As many others have said though, fan/media-wise, it’d be far better to run these concurrently with roughly the last week of the men’s Tour, with the women simply starting a touch earlier on the same course (as the roads are already closed early that morning anyway). But in any case, baby steps.

3) Fossil doesn’t plan to upgrade existing Wear OS watches: After Google announced last month that they’ll join forces with Samsung to create a new Wear OS version/offering, Fossil basically says ‘sorry’ to existing owners. To be fair, I think this might be the only viable approach, depending on how drastic the changes are. Many people (including myself), would argue the only thing that’s going to make Wear OS halfway palatable is a drastic change. Sometimes pulling off the Band-Aid hurts. I haven’t asked Suunto, Casio, or Polar if they plan to update their Wear OS units.

4) Kiel Reijnen runs with gravel bike for 18 miles during race: Yes, you read that right – 18 miles, or 29 kilometers – after he had a mechanical. He did this in socks, on gravel, with the bike rigged over his shoulder using spare tubes.

5) Peloton acquires yet more tech companies: This time, Latitude 32, an engineering company that has assisted Fitbit, GoPro, and numerous other big names. This includes projects in sport, wearables, audio, and accessories. As if there was really any doubt at this point that Peloton is planning some sort of wearable, after acquiring Atlas and others.

6) How Val Thorens Ski Resort is using Drones: Pretty interesting stuff, from one of the biggest names in skiing in France. And we’re not talking consumer drones here, but industrial ones, used for everything from checking runs for skiers at the end of the day, to checking avalanche systems and more. Also, I want to go back and ski Val Thorens again. Sadly, no skiing this past winter in France.

7) Also – if you want some hilarious blast from the past videos from Val Thorens: Here’s from 6 years ago at Val Thorens when The Girl got ‘stuck’ on a giant zipline that is strung between two peaks. Also, my video, and a lot of other shenanigans. Seriously, it’s absolutely bonkers how high up and far you are. And I’d love to do it again.

Sports Tech Device Firmware Updates This Week:

Each week I quickly highlight some of the new firmware, app, software, and website service updates that I see go out. If you’re a sports technology company and release an update – shoot me a quick note (just one-liners are perfect, or Tweet it at me is even better) and I’ll make mention of it here. If I don’t know about it, I won’t be able to post about it. Sound good?  Oh – and if you want to get a head start on things, this page is a great resource for watching Garmin, Wahoo, Polar, and a few other firmware updates.

This was a huge week for firmware updates from a lot of players!

Garmin Edge 530/830/1030/1030 Plus BETA Firmware Update: Continued tweaking of the routing/map screens. This links just to the 1030 Plus one, but you can find the rest in the Garmin Forums (with the most recent betas, as they update frequently).

Garmin Fenix 6/MARQ/Enduro Series Firmware Update: Just a boatload of fixes and tweaks.

Garmin Forerunner 945 Firmware Update: This is the big one, piles of new features from Ultra Run mode to new sleep tracking, to perceived effort tracking, updated Trail Run options, and more. This has been in beta a long-long time. Finally now, production.

Garmin Forerunner 745 Firmware Update: Basically the same as the FR945 one above.

Garmin Forerunner 245 Firmware Update: Adds daily suggested run workouts, VO2Max for Trail Run activities, perceived effort tracking, and a pile more little things.

Garmin HRM-PRO Firmware Update: Bug fix.

Hammerhead Karoo Series Firmware Update: Major Strava leaderboard updates, plus ANT+ sensor connectivity revamps.

Polar Verity Sense Firmware Update: This increases battery life to 30 hours, adds some SDK stuff for developers, and changes the way the sensor sends data via ANT+ during swim mode, so that the user can see summaries of their laps HR data when connectivity is available. It does NOT however add offline caching of heart rate for Garmin watches (trust me, I tried, then I checked with Polar).

Wahoo ELEMNT/BOLT/ROAM Series Firmware Update: Adds performance improvements, and tweaks KICKR & FE-C controls to default to passive mode (so they don’t take over your Zwift session and dork it up)

Wahoo KICKR V5 & V4 (2020/2018) Firmware Update: Adds proper Bluetooth FTMS support (woot!)

Wahoo RIVAL Firmware Update: UI tweaks, and bug fixes.

With that, thanks for reading!

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10 Comments

  1. sean s.

    I was looking at buying a 530,but hey I love a sale and bought the 1030,thanks for the heads up.I also loved the riding around Amsterdam video.

  2. Benedikt

    Missed this articles. 👍🏻

  3. John

    Is there also an associated KICKR Core update? It seems to be kind of the stepchild of the Wahoo trainer range.

  4. Sean K.

    Interesting, my Fenix 6 Pro Solar is on 16.60 release. That must have been pulled at some point and they switched back to 15.20. This new update is now 16.70. So I’m curious what went wrong with the 16.60 release. Hopefully, I’ll be getting that update soon to 16.70. I’ve not had any problems myself with 16.60.

  5. Jamie

    Note that the KICKR CORE also got FTMS support.

  6. pavlinux

    Garmin removed the compatibility of the Fenix 6 Pro series watches for the Birdseye Satellite Imagery.

    link to forums.garmin.com

  7. Martyn

    Not convinced about the 245 update… Since updating my Body Battery has been permanently stuck on 5. Sure I don’t wear it at night, but even so! Tried resetting etc, but still no joy.