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Garmin – Buyer’s Guide – Outdoor, Cycling, Sports

Choosing the "right" Garmin GPS device is not easy! GPSMAP, Oregon, eTrex, eTrex Touch or Montana handheld? Edge cycling device? Or a wearable like the fenix?

Each type and series has its strengths and weaknesses. To help you make your choice, the following table contains an overview of the most important outdoor and cycling activities and an allocation to the different Garmin GPS device series.

The classification is subjective and should serve you as a reference point for a purchase decision.

Activity / Series GPSMAP 64/65 GPSMAP 66 Montana Oregon eTrex Touch eTrex Edge fenix
Allrounder ++ ++ + ++ + + ++
Mountaineering ++ + + ++ + ++
Geocaching ++ ++ + ++ ++ +
Mountain biking ++ ++ + + + ++ +
Road cycling ++ +
Bicycle touring ++ ++ + ++ + + ++
Sea kayaking ++ + ++
Long distance hiking ++ + + + ++ +
Hiking ++ ++ + ++ ++ + +
(Trail) Running ++
Details GPSMAP tbd tbd eTrex Touch eTrex tbd tbd

What are the advantages of Garmin outdoor handhelds?

(compared to the bicycle devices)

  • Universal, for various activities
  • Specific outdoor functions
  • Replaceable AA batteries (*)
  • Long battery life
  • Hand holdable
  • Buttons below the displays are advantageous when cycling (*)
  • Easy to operate with (winter) gloves (*)
  • Usually an excellent GPS reception
  • Multi-band and multi-GNSS technology (*)
  • Compatible with Garmin Explore (*)

(*) depending on the model

What are the advantages of Garmin Edge cycling devices?

(compared to the outdoor devices)

  • Specific bike functions
  • Extensive training functions
  • Course navigation has advantages over the (outdoor) track navigation
  • Greater variety of external sensors and devices
  • Compatible with ANT+ LEV (e.g. from Specialized) and Shimano Steps e-bikes
  • Operation via the Edge remote control (hands remain on the handlebars!)
  • Garmin Connect compatible
  • Copying courses from the Garmin Connect app (incl. Strava and komoot)
  • Integration into the handlebars (optics & construction)
  • Wide range of handlebar mounts (also from third party suppliers)

What are the advantages of Garmin wearables like the fenix?

(compared to the outdoor & cycling devices)

  • Small and relatively light
  • Always with you
  • Universal and huge range of functions (*)
  • Extensive training functions
  • Heart rate on the wrist
  • Greater variety of external and internal sensors
  • Garmin Connect compatible
  • Garmin Explore compatible (*)
  • Copying courses from the Garmin Connect app (incl. Strava and komoot)
  • Solar charging (*)

(*) depending on the model

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