Stages Cycling Launch Dash M200 & L200
Stages Cycling has just launched two new bike computers, Dash M200 & Dash L200 and I’ll be following up with a review towards the end of this month.
Some of you might be confused by some identically named new products from Giant. Don’t be. They’re the exact same product.
Stages have changed the buttons and mount from the earlier models and that addresses the two main hardware flaws from over three years ago when the first Dash units were released.
The two new models represent the size-equivalents to the medium-sized Garmin Edge 520/Wahoo Bolt and larger-sized Garmin Edge 1030/Wahoo ROAM, however, the quirk offered by Stages is the ability to rotate the Dash by 90-degrees to give a landscape display which might be useful when you view full screen-width charts such as an elevation profile or the steps in a structured workout.
The Stages screen is very bright and yet Stages still get good battery life with the screen cranked up to the max. On reduced brightness settings the battery life is in line with Garmin/Wahoo.
Stages have the core features in place ranging from structured workouts, to maps and routes, to a highly customisable display with many innovative data field types. Hill profiles are supported for climbing and Varia radar is supported for safety. Naturally, all your bike sensors are also fully supported ver BLE or ANT+.
Two unusual features that are unique to Stages are the Dash’s ability to automatically build Bike Sport profiles based on your sensors and the ability to configure a VAST number of metrics in any way you like on the screen – more so than Garmin in both cases.
Perhaps a performance-orientated cyclist might choose Stages if they have specific metrics they want to view.
Perhaps also a particularly finicky cyclist might choose a Dash to get the screen to display precisely how they want it.
Stages Dash M200 and L200 Comparison
the two new products are effectively the same under the skin. the larger model has a larger battery, larger screen and is slightly heavier.
|Manufacturer||Stages Cycling||Stages Cycling|
|Dimensions (L×W×H mm)||81 mm x 51 mm x 22 mm||94 mm x 60 mm x 22 mm|
|Weight||77 g||105 g|
|Waterproof Rating (IPX)||IP57||IP57|
|Display||EverBrite™ OCA screen||EverBrite™ OCA screen|
|Display Resolution||240 x 320||240 x 320|
|Battery Type||USB lithium-ion (1600mAh)||USB lithium-ion (2300 mAh)|
|Battery Run Time||18+ hours with reduced power mode enabled. 10 hours at max operation (Displaying maps with 1 sensor connected, with 100% backlight).||18+ hours with reduced power mode enabled. 10 hours at max operation (Displaying maps with 1 sensor connected, with 100% backlight)|
|Battery Charge Time||>2.5h, up to 24 hours of use||>3.5 h, up to 24 hours of use|
|Mount Types||Standard quarter-turn stem mount||Standard quarter-turn stem mount|
|Memory||16 GB||16 GB|
|Supported Satellites||GPS and QZSS||GPS and QZSS|
|Compass||GPS based||GPS based|
|Ambient Light Sensor||Yes||Yes|
|Display View||Portrait or Landscape||Portrait or Landscape|
|Wireless Connectivity||ANT+®, BLUETOOTH®, and Wi-Fi®||ANT+®, BLUETOOTH®, and Wi-Fi®|
|Sensor Compatibility||ANT+® and BLUETOOTH®||ANT+® and BLUETOOTH®|
|Phone Compatibility||iPhone® and Android™||iPhone® and Android™|
The main takeout for the Stages Dash is that there is now polished hardware that complements already-excellent software. If you already have a Dash you will probably be broadly happy with it and the chance of an upgrade to a slightly easier to use model might tempt you to consult Mrs Visa for some cash action.
There’s no reason that any other cyclist would not be happy with a Stages Dash; it’s probably more that they won’t have heard of the brand. That’s where the co-branding with Giant comes in. I suspect the new bike sales channel might be lucrative as buyers just go with the flow of a bike bundled with a cheaper computer.
Stages’ pricing is discounted when compared to Garmin but I suspect not by enough to make a material difference to the current Garmin-Wahoo hegemony. All that is holding Stages back, I feel, is wider brand awareness. Perversely their brand awareness is relatively good with performance cyclists familiar with their sponsorship of Tour riders. However, performance cyclists are a relatively small market in the grand scheme of cycling.
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