Comparison: Garmin Edge 820 vs Garmin Edge 810 vs Garmin Edge 520

Garmin Edge 820, Garmin Edge 810

Edge 810 vs. 820

The Garmin Edge 820 is finally announced.

With some caveats, I like it a lot.

ESSENTIAL READING: Review of the Garmin Edge 820

Below is a quick comparison of the Edge 820 to the Edge 520 and the more dated Edge 810. There’s not as many differences as you might think. I’m working on an opinion piece looking at these and other factors. I’ve already used with Varia…some quick thoughts (here) on that.

The issues with the 820 initially appear to be “stability-based” but, as of Feb2017, new firmware has notably improved general usage eg on 25/Sep/16 I had a 3 hour race/ride with it in perfect working order. Later in 2016, touchscreen firmware ‘fixes’ seem to have made things slightly worse for me! but seem to have generally improved touchscreen issues fro many people.

ESSENTIAL READING: A loooong navigation with the Garmin Edge 820

ESSENTIAL READING: Pru Ride London with the Garmin Edge 820

Garmin Edge 820In a Nutshell: The Garmin Edge 820 is an Edge 520 with mapping and a few extra little goodies such as: wifi upload; touch screen; 16Gb internal storage; group tracking of fellow livetrackers; crash detection; battery save mode; and some lesser stuff.

It really is that simple.

If you don’t know the 520, look at the table below. The 820 IS the most advanced and feature-full cycling computer available. I can only think of 4 reasons why you would not buy one: price; button-only operation (ie not touchscreen); remaining bugs; and screen size.

The cut-down Garmin Edge 820-EXPLORE variant is not worth considering, IMO, as it has neither power meter support nor workouts nor WIFI nor some lesser bits.

CAUTION: 12February 2017: The Edge 820 is a highly complex product and still has notable bugs (see Garmin forum) which may, or may not, affect how you intend to use the product.

If you decide to buy an 820, after reading the information below and reading my Review of the Garmin Edge 820, I would be remiss if I did not urge you to see if the remaining bugs will affect you. I *DO* use the 820 every week. I *STILL DO* have touchscreen issues but this may only be with early-release models.

  Edge 820 Edge 520 Edge 810
Physical dimensions 73.0 x 49.0 x 21.0 mm 49.0 x 73.0 x 21.0 Mm 51.0 x 93.0 x 25.0 mm
Display size, WxH 58.4 mm 35.0 x 47.0 Mm 36.0 x 55.0 mm
Display resolution, WxH 200 x 265 pixels 200 x 265 pixels 160 x 240 pixels, touchscreen
Touchscreen Yes No Yes
Color display Yes Yes Yes
Weight 67.7 g 60 g 98.0 g
Battery Rechargeable lithium-ion Rechargeable lithium-ion rechargeable lithium-ion
Battery life Up to 15 hours GPS training mode; up to 24 hours UltraTrac mode Up to 15 hours up to 17 hours
Water rating IPX7 IPX7 IPX7
GPS-enabled Yes Yes Yes
GLONASS Yes Yes No
High-sensitivity receiver Yes Yes Yes
Barometric altimeter Yes Yes Yes
Unit-to-unit transfer (shares data wirelessly with similar units) Yes
Smart notifications (displays email, text and other alerts when paired with your compatible phone) Yes Yes
VIRB® control Yes
Maps & Memory
Basemap Yes Yes Yes
Ability to add maps Yes Yes
Accepts data cards microSD™ card (some versions include a City Navigator microSD card)
Waypoints/favorites/locations 200 200 200
Routes 0 0 Limited by memory space available
History Up to 180 hours Up to 180 hours up to 180 hours
Cycling Features
Compatible with Vector™ Yes Yes Yes
Multiple bike profiles Yes  Activity profiles  Yes
Bike speed/cadence sensor Yes (Some versions) Yes (optional)  Yes (optional)
Performance Features
Heart rate monitor Yes (optional) Yes (optional) Yes (optional)
Virtual Partner® (train against a digital person) Yes Yes Yes
Courses (compete against previous activities) Yes Yes Yes
Auto Pause® (pauses and resumes timer based on speed) Yes Yes Yes
Auto Lap® (automatically starts a new lap) Yes Yes Yes
Auto Scroll (cycles through data pages during workout) Yes Yes Yes
Advanced workouts (create custom, goal-oriented workouts) Yes Yes Yes
Time/distance alert (triggers alarm when you reach goal) Yes Yes Yes
Interval training (set up exercise and rest intervals) Yes Yes Yes
Heart rate-based calorie computation Yes Yes Yes
Calculates calories burned Yes
Customizable screen(s) Yes Yes Yes
Power meter compatible (displays power data from compatible 3rd party ANT+™-enabled power meters) Yes (records data approx. 1 per second) Yes (records data approx. 1 per second) Yes (records data approx. 1 per second)
Temperature (displays and records temperature while you ride) Yes Yes Yes
Shock Resistant Yes Yes Yes
Garmin Connect™
Garmin Connect™ compatible (online community where you analyze, categorize and share data) Yes Yes Yes
Automatic sync (automatically transfers data to your computer) Yes Yes  By phone only.
Additional
 Compatible with Varia™ bike radar and lights:  Yes   Yes  Yes
 Edge® remote compatibility: Yes Yes Connected features via smartphone: yes
 LiveTrack: Yes   Yes   Yes
Advanced performance and power analysis, including VO2 max, FTP/Watts/kg tracking, Performance condition/lactate threshold/stress score as well as advanced cycling dynamics, GroupTrack, in-ride challenges through Strava live segments and connected features Advanced performance and power analysis, including new Time in Zone, FTP tracking, cycling-specific VO2 and recovery and cycling dynamics Compatible with Garmin Connect™ Mobile: yes
 Bike trainer profile for compatible Turbo trainer data display and control:  Yes Yes
 On-device segment compatibility for dynamic and engaging in-ride competition: Yes Yes  Yes, STRAVA
 Operating temperature:  -20°C to +55°C  -20°C to +55°C  -20°C to +55°C
 Connected features via a smartphone:  Yes Yes
 Compatible with Garmin Connect™ and Garmin Connect™ Mobile Yes Yes
 Integration with Shimano Di2 electronic shifting: Yes

(Not Explore Version)

Yes Yes
 Weather alerts: Yes  Yes
 Preloaded Garmin cycling map Yes No
 Wi-Fi® compatible Yes No
 Ambient light:  Yes (Not explore Version)
 Round-trip routing:  Yes No
 Route planner:  Yes   No
Incident detection: Yes  Compatible with VIRB® action cameras: Yes
 Training plans/workouts: Yes  Yes  Yes
 Connect IQ™ store compatible: Yes
 Audio prompts:  Yes
 This USB mass storage device is compatible with Windows® XP or newer and Mac® Yes  Yes Yes

Approximate Prices:

Garmin Edge 1000 Explore (non-bundle) £345.00 Link $449.00 Link
Garmin Edge 1000 £345.00 Link $499.00 Link
Garmin Edge 820 £330.00 Link $400.00 Link
Garmin Edge 520 £176.00 Link $299.99 Link
Garmin Edge 510 £300.00 Link $329.99 Link
Garmin Edge 810 £197.00 Link $305.99 Link

15 thoughts on “Comparison: Garmin Edge 820 vs Garmin Edge 810 vs Garmin Edge 520

    • highlight the table paste it into excel…should work. you’ll have to do a bit of formatting afterwards. Word of warning though, the data is from the Garmin website 🙂

  1. got a few things wrong re the 810 there (speaking as an owner of one). Auto sync – sort of… by phone so strictly, I agree, not by computer but it does auto sync (as opposed to the 800 which didn’t).
    Multiple bike profiles = yes
    speed cadence = yes (and power and Di2 if anyone’s interested).

    Otherwise, good bit of comparison.

  2. Thanks for the comparison. For four rows including the one for “Integration with Shimano Di2 electronic shifting: Yes”, the right column provides a comment for a different characteristic than the left column and their doesn’t appear to be comment in the right column for “ambient light”.

  3. I have just ONE question that simply determines which one I will buy (810 or 820): as I know, the 810 has a RESISTIVE touch screen (meaning it will also work when touched with your finger-NAILS) but the all-important question is now: does the 820 also have a resistive type touch screen, or is it the capacitive type, as on all smartpjones? I just cannot stand those and is the main reason I do not buy a smartphone.

  4. You have made some clanging mistakes. The 810 does have Virb control and works with a smartphone for tracking and uploading.

    • ah well spotted. I did of course take those bits from the Garmin site so the multi-billion dollar company is the one that made the original clanging mistake 😉 . I’m just me who has a day job

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