Over the years, Garmin has earned its place as one of the top brands by creating useful and friendly devices.
Some of those devices are the GPS computers, which are accessories designed to back up cyclists during their adventures out there in the open.
Indeed, the brand has created incredible accessories so far, but only a few of them are as popular as the Garmin Edge 130.
By now, there’s no doubt that Garmin has produced better GPS computers, and yet, people still go back to the Edge 130. But why is that, exactly?
In our Garmin Edge 130 review, we’ll explore the many reasons why this device continues to be the preferred choice for many cyclists.
Garmin Edge 130 – A Convenient Design for All
One of the most surprising features of this device is its build. By measuring 63mm x 41 mm, the Edge 130 is far more convenient to have around than other Garmin accessories such as the Edge 520.
Besides the size, the Edge 130 differentiates from the rest due to its 33g of weight.
Of course, a smaller size means a smaller screen. The resolution offered is 303×230 pixels, which is quite impressive, considering the size of the device.
Even though it’s a monochrome screen, the texts and menus displayed are easy to see and read.
The device doesn’t have a touchscreen, which poses new challenges for users. That being said, navigating through the menus is pretty simple, as the five buttons included to do that are easy to use.
You can find other buttons included on the left side, which controls the device’s on/off, and on the bottom edge to do tasks like start or stop.
As for the buttons on the right side, they’ll let you navigate through data and options.
Figuring out how these buttons operate, and what they can do, won’t take you much time.
Some people even consider the buttons to be far better than the touchscreen due to the many issues the touch-screen could bring.
Now that we’re discussing performance, it’s only fair to mention the rather incredible battery life provided by this device.
You see, the Garmin Edge 130 will run for 15 hours, but that’s in the best-case scenario. Realistically, you can expect the device to operate for a total of 10 to 12 hours.
Is that bad? Not at all! Once again, the device continues to surprise us even more. Due to its compact and small design, it’d be obvious to expect it to run for less time, but that’s not the case.
With 10 to 12 hours of running time, the Edge 130 covers many days of riding.
A Basic Navigation System
You’ll hear a lot of good things about this device, but it remains an entry-level accessory if you consider the other GPS computers offered by Garmin.
It’s easy to tell that because Edge 130 operates as a basic navigation tool.
If your purpose is to use it for navigation, the Edge 130 requires downloading routes using the Garmin Express or Garmin Connect app.
Another disadvantage of this device is that it doesn’t offer turn-by-turn directions. Also, don’t expect it to help you out if you go off the course, as it’ll only notify you, but that’s how far it’ll go.
The device does have turn alerts, which will notify you which route to take when a junction is nearby.
However, this feature doesn’t work properly. In some cases, the icons don’t represent the road ahead of you clearly, and sometimes the alerts come up too late.
In due time, you get used to these inconveniences, and using the device gets easier.
Nonetheless, it’d be better to avoid unknown routes if you’re using this device.
Stick to routes you’ve taken before, and the Edge 130 will guide you through them with no issues.
The Garmin Connect App
If there’s anything this device does right, that’d be to advise you on what to do next. The Edge 130 allows cyclists to select a large variety of riding activities, including commuting, gravel, and even mountain riding.
Those types of riding are visible on the Garmin Connect. Once you choose it, the device displays information such as how long cyclists must wait before heading back, which allows better recovery.
The Garmin Edge 130 makes it easy to check the detailed information of your ride, which includes heart rate, elevation charts, and more.
Surprisingly enough, the Garmin Connect app synchronizes quickly, allowing you to access all that information rather fast.
Also, Edge 130 has proven to deliver high compatibility to work well with sensors such as heart rate, cadence, power meters, and more.
Furthermore, cyclists receive a large metrics selection to monitor how each of the sensors works.
Upon pairing the Edge 130 with a sensor for the first time, be it heart-rate or anything else, the device suggests adding customized data screen that will display data of interest for cyclists.
By doing that, users will save a lot of time because they don’t have to meddle with the settings.
Finally, cyclists will appreciate other features such as the Strava Live Segments, Bluetooth connections, and ANT+ sensor compatibility, three incredible functions this device provides efficiently.
The fact that the Garmin Edge 130 is capable of offering these features in such a small and compact device is one of the reasons why people like it.
A Seemingly Flawless Performance
If you’ve used Garmin products before, you know that some of them may have frustrating issues.
It’s not necessarily the brand’s fault, but bugs like the one seen in the Edge 820, which features an often flawed touchscreen, are no fun in the slightest.
The Edge 130, on the other hand, seems to perform flawlessly. During the months tested, the device has met the demands and expectations set initially, with no bugs or issues throughout its use.
So, yes, the Edge 130 lacks features some cyclists may deem as essential, but the device does its best with what it has.
Disadvantages of Using the Edge 130
It wouldn’t be fair to finish the review without mentioning some of the downsides of the device.
Most of the information in this section was mentioned before, but we’ll go a little more in-depth just so we’re clear on what to expect after purchasing the Edge 130.
Not Suitable for Navigation
First and foremost, if your purpose is to use the Edge 130 for navigation, you’d do well in considering other options.
Yes, this device does offer some level of tracking and options to download routes, but the quality of this information isn’t the best.
Since there’s no base map feature included, the navigation offered by this device is nothing more than a line on a white screen.
For some cyclists, that may be enough, but data-focused users will certainly miss the highly detailed maps provided by more capable GPS bike computers.
Cyclists must appreciate the Edge 130 for what it is: a compact and simple GPS bike computer.
Because of that, you shouldn’t expect this accessory to offer fancy features like a touchscreen.
Of course, the device does offer other options to work your way through menus and other functions.
Luckily, the buttons responsible for operating those settings are easy to use, and they work efficiently.
While the lack of a touchscreen could be disappointing for some cyclists, it barely has any effect on the device’s performance, as there are other methods to get it to do what you need.
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No Color Screen Either
Much like the touchscreen, the Edge 130 doesn’t have a color display either. While some may not consider it an issue, there’s no denying that a display with colors would’ve made this device more appealing to more cyclists.
In all fairness, the black and white display isn’t that bad, though. The data displayed by the device is legible, and you can adjust brightness or other settings to make it even better.
The Edge 130 lacks a color screen, and that’s a bummer. However, you can expect the information to be legible, even if it’s in black and white.
Is the Garmin Edge 130 Worth the Money?
Despite not having interesting features like a touchscreen, the Garmin Edge 130 remains a ground-breaking device for the price.
It offers everything you can expect from an entry-level GPS bike computer, minus the efficient navigating system.
With a pleasant and conveniently compact design, this device is the one to have if you’re looking for a budget-friendly GPS computer.
It offers plenty of useful features, compatibility with many sensors, and it’s lightweight.
Our Garmin Edge 130 review focuses on the many features that make this device relevant up to this day. Considering everything it can do, its price is more than reasonable.
So, the next time you’re considering going out for a ride, don’t miss out on the Edge 130. It’ll help you a lot by providing detailed data on several aspects that will only end up making the whole experience more pleasant.