First off, on a cool note, we had an earthquake in Maryland this morning. I woke up at 5am and was brushing my teeth when I heard a low rumble and the house started moving. I ignored it, figuring the furnace had just kicked on. Until I realized we don't have a furnace... It wasn't a large earthquake by a Californian, but nonetheless it was pretty awesome.
To the topic at hand...
Do any of you use a GPS device while biking? I know that at least Chesapeake Sailor uses a Garmin Edge 705, which is the top of the line Garmin (and well out of my price range).
I've been doing a bit of research on them...
The Edge 205 is the very entry level Garmin device. It shows basically what a $10 bike computer shows, but it does track your gps coordinates. This is $250.
The Edge 500 does everything the 205 can do, but adds an altimeter and, for extra, you can add a cadence and heart rate monitor. It is the same price of the 205, so I doubt there is any reason to even look at the 205.
The Edge 305 is the predecessor to the 500 and comes standard with either a cadence -or- heart rate monitor. You can purchase the other and use it as well. Price hike to $350 though and since you can get the Cadence and heart rate monitor on the 500 for $350, there really isn't a point in spending more money for an older product.
The Edge 605 is the first one to offer an on-screen (and colour) map. It will show you where to go and has the functionality of the edge 205 (speed, distance, gps). Unfortunately, and in a move I don't understand, it is not compatible with any cadence or heart rate monitors. So basically you are paying $400 for a $250 product (the 205) with maps. It doesn't even have an altimeter! I'll pass.
And finally, the king of the Garmin series, the Edge 705. It does all the neat things of all of these, including an on-screen map, cadence and heart rate, speed, etc. The issue is the $550 price, which is more than my bike is worth.
And to toss in my final cheap-ass options are getting the non-bike specific gps's. The Forerunner 205 for $150, which is a running watch, the Etrex H, which is a mountable handheld, and the Foretrex 401, which is similar to the Forerunner 205, but also has an altimeter (a great review of the 401 is located here.
So anyways, do you have a gps? What do you like about it? Do you even care about your data? For me, I don't really see a point in monitoring my heart rate nor cadence. While it would make for a cool data set, I'm not training for any races. I just like the idea of knowing exactly where I go with higher accuracy than ridewithgps.com can give (along with knowing what speeds I am going throughout the ride).