Author Topic: New Garmin Edge Touring  (Read 4457 times)

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Offline TwoWheeledExplorer

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New Garmin Edge Touring
« on: August 29, 2013, 11:42:52 am »
I like gizmos as much as anyone (except maybe my son-in-law), but it is rare I find one that is a "must have". I have a solid Delorme PN-20 GPS for my MTB, and a Garmin Edge 205 on my Bianchi, Discovery. Today, Garmin revealed something new. In the words of Will Smith at the con of the alien spaceship in ID4, "I gotta get me one of these!": http://youtu.be/MA9V1M2ikqs

Looking forward to actually being able to check one out first hand.

Ride safe,
Hans
« Last Edit: August 29, 2013, 05:18:43 pm by TwoWheeledExplorer »
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"Every person has a river to ride...you are to Ride the River."--Pr. Larry Christenson

Offline DanE

Re: New Garmin Edge Touring
« Reply #1 on: August 31, 2013, 07:35:37 am »
What I find the most interesting is that Garmin is incorporating OpenStreet Maps into the unit instead of selling their proprietary maps. I think that is a very positive step forward. The other features of the unit look very good as well.

However, it seems to use the rechargeable battery like the other units in the Edge series. I prefer the eTrex series for touring because it uses AA batteries. Then I don't have to carry the charger, I can just pick up a 4 pack of AA's as I go and be good for the week. Just my preference.


Offline Steve All

Re: New Garmin Edge Touring
« Reply #2 on: September 09, 2013, 06:47:52 pm »
I'm wondering if/how the new Garmin Edge Touring allows for updates of its underlying OpenStreetMap (OSM) data.  Can you hook it up to a desktop/laptop via USB cable and slurp up "newer" OSM data from Garmin's web site?  Can you do this wirelessly via Bluetooth or WiFi or maybe a 3G/4G cellular radio chip (the first two maybe, the last one not very likely).  Is there a microSD card that can have newer gmapsupp.img files written into the Garmin folder (and then popped back into the device)?

Or is this device just "stuck" with the OSM data that was fresh a bit before you bought it, but is getting older and more obsolete every single day?  That would be a bummer, considering how lively are bike route updates to OSM.  I don't expect "real-time" updates (I'll fiddle a chip or a wireless/wired via web connection if I have to), but I do want updates.  The biggest bummer would be if Garmin requires money to pay for a subscription to update the OSM data.  Hey!  Those data are cost-free!  Garmin WOULD have the right to do this (you'd be paying for their services for "compiling" the OSM data into a Garmin-specific format, though those tools already exist), but doing so feels like it violates the spirit of the OpenStreetMap project.  Yet, I know Garmin has got to make a profit.  But, Garmin, if you charge for OSM data, might you reconsider -- recouping profit on the device only?  (Leave free data to be free!)

I'm not a lawyer, just an OSM volunteer/contributor.  (Recently finished updating the USBRS in OSM!)

BTW, I'm an owner of more than one Garmin GPS device, and I REALLY do prefer the much-greener NiMH (rechargeable via my solar panels) AA batteries.  If a device doesn't use AAs (and NiMHs well), I might not buy it, and I'm not alone!
« Last Edit: September 09, 2013, 06:56:40 pm by Steve All »

Offline TwoWheeledExplorer

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Re: New Garmin Edge Touring
« Reply #3 on: September 09, 2013, 08:28:03 pm »
Supposedly, you will be able to update the maps though Garmin Connect or Base Camp. If the battery is like in the rest of the Edge line-up, it's internal and you recharge it through your USB port, a USB plug for the car, or a USB adapter for a wall plug.

Ride safe,
Hans
The Two-Wheeled Explorer: Ride the River
www.twowheeledexplorer.org
"Every person has a river to ride...you are to Ride the River."--Pr. Larry Christenson

Offline mdxix

Re: New Garmin Edge Touring
« Reply #4 on: September 09, 2013, 09:47:21 pm »
I'm wondering if/how the new Garmin Edge Touring allows for updates of its underlying OpenStreetMap (OSM) data.
I do not believe this is clear just yet. I have not seen any reference from Garmin to indicate the availability and method for updates.

If updates are available, they will be through Garmin's map update page. The current tool for updating maps on the Edge series is Garmin Express.

Meanwhile, the unit itself accepts SD cards that you can load with new and custom maps.

To load the latest OSM maps on the Touring unit or any other unit for that matter, take a look at these two references:

BTW, I'm an owner of more than one Garmin GPS device, and I REALLY do prefer the much-greener NiMH (rechargeable via my solar panels) AA batteries.  If a device doesn't use AAs (and NiMHs well), I might not buy it, and I'm not alone!
The unit has built-in rechargeable lithium-ion battery accordingly to the product specifications page. This is the same for all the Edge series units.

Can you elaborate on your experience with solar panels in this other discussion: Solar Panel - Yea or Nay?? The general feedback was "iffy" at best.

Offline Steve All

Re: New Garmin Edge Touring
« Reply #5 on: September 10, 2013, 12:20:33 am »
I've been an electronics geek since the 1960s when my dad taught me to solder when I was six.  The solar panel setup I use to charge NiMH batteries is "one of many" depending on whether I am at home (roof panels) or mobile -- car or camping/backpacking/even cycling, if touring long-distance enough.  For the latter, a 10-watt rigid solar panel (17.1V charging, 12V nominal) hooked up to a homebrew "Frankenstein Box" (Radio Shack sealed plastic kit box containing voltmeter, 12V 5Ah alarm battery, diodes for polarity reversal protection, fuses, wiring, 2 cigarette-lighter sockets and 2 Adapt-A-Plug sockets (allows 12V to feed almost any device with a jack) works quite well.  I use a Maha/PowerEx 9000 charger, the "Rolls Royce" of NiMH AA/AAA battery chargers (digital LED readouts of everything).  The solar panel, similar in size and shape to a legal size pad of paper, fits snugly in a day pack right against my back, leaving plenty of room for all else I carry in there (an older Garmin 60Csx, a Canon camera, flashlights/headlamp, walkie-talkies, and an AM/FM/SW radio, great for deep woods reception) and Platypus hydration, jacket, etc.  Every one of my devices runs on AA or AAA rechargeable batteries.  True, I can't solar charge while riding or hiking like this, but you'll figure it out.

If you are using "less," I suppose you can do it (charge rechargeable NiMH batteries for your gadgets), but I have always liked building my own when it comes to electronics.  I know not everybody can do so, but I say all of this to show that it can be done, what I have is a fairly low-tech (though nice) setup, doesn't cost too much, and except for replacing the alarm battery about once every three to six years, will probably last another fifteen after already lasting fifteen years.  There are some rather cheesy solar battery chargers out there as ready-made/turnkey solutions, and those probably are disappointing to most consumers.  But take heart:  once you figure out a way, it is doable, reliable and cheap-cheap-cheap.  Even after the initial investment, I'm sure I save serious coin.  Remember, the newer, better sorts of NiMH batteries last a good 500 to 1000 recharge cycles.  With almost-free solar power, that's pennies per juice-cycle.  Compare that to several bux for an 8-pack of alkaline disposables, and you'll realize it's your money you are throwing away.

Find a good solar solution to charge the batteries for your devices.  I don't know what a good commercial ready-made one is, having built one myself, but shop, look, read reviews, build what you have to, get a quality DC or DC/AC charger, spend a bit of money on better NiMH batteries (guaranteed, and at least 2500 mAh for AA, 900 for AAA) and "be free" (of battery tyranny).

(Back on topic).  Thanks for pointing out that the Edge family of Garmin devices uses a built-in Lithium pack.  Boo:  I probably won't be buying one for that reason alone.  But thanks to all for the lively buzz about the device.  It is exciting Garmin is using OSM for its basemap data in at least one device -- and for bicyclists, too!
« Last Edit: September 10, 2013, 02:50:52 pm by Steve All »

Offline NickPayne

Re: New Garmin Edge Touring
« Reply #6 on: November 20, 2013, 03:10:50 am »
I'm wondering if/how the new Garmin Edge Touring allows for updates of its underlying OpenStreetMap (OSM) data.
I do not believe this is clear just yet. I have not seen any reference from Garmin to indicate the availability and method for updates.
You can update maps and other stuff with GarminExpress (http://software.garmin.com/en-US/express.html). I just purchased an Edge Touring. First thing I did when I pulled it out of the box was to connect it to the PC and fire up GarminExpress. This told me that I could update the firmware (about 10Mb), the time zone information (500Kb), and the maps (a bit over 4Gb). So you need a reasonable speed internet connection to update the maps. The unit came with an 8Gb microSD card, but as I had a spare 32Gb card that came out of a defunct phone, and I wanted to load several more OSM maps on it, I swapped the supplied card out for the 32Gb card before performing the update.

Offline Steve All

Re: New Garmin Edge Touring
« Reply #7 on: November 20, 2013, 03:03:59 pm »
Nick, that's pretty neat, thanks for your update.

I'm guessing the 4 GB OpenStreetMap (OSM) map used is the one that DaveH publishes every couple of weeks (based on the Lambertus maps), but I'm curious:  how is the "bicyclist specific" aspect of this device?  Does the Edge display something resembling the Cycle Map layer of OSM?  In other words, does it show national/regional/local bicycle routes, bike shops, crossings, restrooms, tourist points like OSM's Cycle Map layer does?

And what are these "several more OSM maps" you want to load onto it?  (OpenSeaMap, maybe?)  Newer Garmin devices now allow multiple maps to be stored on the microSD card and are selectable from the user interface -- can this one?  (That's a big help.  It used to be you could only store one single "gmapsupp.img" file on the card, and to get different maps -- even if there was space on the card to store them -- you had to swap cards.  What a pain to have to do it like that).  My old Garmin 60Csx is limited like that, and its microSD slot maxes out with 4GB cards.  Good enough (for a seven-year-old device), but I've got my eye on a newer Garmin soon!  Just not quite this one, unless they make a model that uses AA batteries instead of a built-in lithium cell.

Any pointers you might lead us to for different ("bicycle oriented" or not) OSM maps that work with Garmin devices are very much appreciated!  Thanks in advance.

Offline NickPayne

Re: New Garmin Edge Touring
« Reply #8 on: November 20, 2013, 09:31:59 pm »
You can download bicycle-oriented OSM maps for Garmin from http://garmin.openstreetmap.nl/. Select the "routable bicycle" option, pick the country or tiles you want, and it will either immediately show you the download link for the zipped gmapsupp file if you have selected a predetermined country, or it will create the gmapsupp file download for you if you have chosen custom tiles, and email you the download link when it has built the gmapsupp.img file. So if your device only allows a single *.img file, You can create one covering whatever map areas you desire.

You can also merge multiple maps into a single gmapsupp.img file using mkgmap. See the Openstreetmap wiki: http://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/OSM_Map_On_Garmin

Most modern devices are not restricted to a single *.img file - they will open any img file placed in the Garmin directory. Again, see the Openstreetmap wiki for details.

Offline Steve All

Re: New Garmin Edge Touring
« Reply #9 on: November 20, 2013, 09:54:45 pm »
Great, thanks, Nick.  I knew all that, I just wanted to see if you would/could add any more.

Offline recumbentted

Re: New Garmin Edge Touring
« Reply #10 on: April 18, 2014, 06:38:09 pm »
I got mine.  You should get yours.  I have 5 garmin devices and this one is by far the best for touring.  The battery is an issue, but my hub dynamo remedies that.

Offline mdxix

Re: New Garmin Edge Touring
« Reply #11 on: April 18, 2014, 08:01:00 pm »
I got mine.  You should get yours.  I have 5 garmin devices and this one is by far the best for touring.  The battery is an issue, but my hub dynamo remedies that.
Are any of your other devices in the Edge series? Why do you think the Touring is "by far the best for touring"?

I have found the Edge series works best for me across all my activities. While I do agree with your statement, I am curious what you found appealing in this device.

Offline Pat Lamb

Re: New Garmin Edge Touring
« Reply #12 on: April 20, 2014, 11:49:51 am »
FWIW, battery life limits are one of my top GPS aggravations when touring.  Those wo don't want to go the DIY route might appreciate the battery holder http://www.batteryspace.com/batteryholderaax4withusbinterfaceconnectorandbeltcliponoffpowerswitch-rohscompliant.aspx I was guided to.  Holds 4 AA cells, recharges through a USB cable, and can at least double the 15-16 hour life of the Edge battery.  Of course, you'll either have to resupply with more alkaline batteries or hole up near an outlet for some hours to recharge after that.

Offline Steve All

Re: New Garmin Edge Touring
« Reply #13 on: April 20, 2014, 03:15:38 pm »
Pat, that's a pretty handy device -- and it's quite inexpensive at under $4.  You'll note that it ONLY accepts rechargeable AA batteries (NiMH, these days) as they are nominally 1.2 volts each, and explicitly does not allow the flexibility to use alkaline batteries, as they are nominally 1.5 volts each.  (So be careful; in your post up there it looks like you plan on using alkalines, when in fact, you shouldn't).  In effect, this device takes 4 AA NiMH batteries (1.2V x 4 = 4.8V) and just pumps out "something pretty close to 5 volts" for a USB device without any additional voltage regulation.  If it had v.r. it would allow alkaline cells, but then it wouldn't cost $4, and it would be bigger and heavier.  But putting in 4 alkalines x 1.5V yields 6V output (unregulated), so you might begin to "fry" sensitive USB devices that are looking for a 4.5 - 5.5 V range.  Don't do that!

Considering I almost never use alkaline cells, this would work for me.  I do also appreciate that the rechargeable cells can be CHARGED in this device by a USB cable (though, of course you are getting the power from that device, whether a laptop battery, or something plugged into a wall that "serves" power over a USB cable).  That is a handy way to make this device a "two way" power source (or sink):  power in (to store it in the NiMH cells), power out (to charge or run your USB device).  For $4 (plus your NiMH rechargeable cells), that's not bad!

I usually carry "spares" of sets of NiMH cells (in handy plastic snap-cases holding 4 or 8 cells) and so just rotate the charged ones in when the others are exhausted, then I just solar-charge them while I'm using some of "the other ones."  Repeat, ad infinitum.  Well, not quite:  but I do get 700 or 800 charge cycles on a single set of NiMH cells.  This works great and is way cheaper and eco-friendlier in the long run.

Offline Pat Lamb

Re: New Garmin Edge Touring
« Reply #14 on: April 20, 2014, 08:46:59 pm »
Steve, good catch on the alkalines.  I got it with a charger + 8 Ni MH batteries.  Watch out for the low price, though: S&H will eat you up.