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What MTB Computer Should You Buy?

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As technology continuously encroaches our daily lives, the more we become more immersed in it. The comfort that it gives in almost every activities that we are doing everyday allows us to track our performance. The same goes when it comes to sports activities like mountain biking.

Mountain bike (MTB) computers over smartphones?

If there’s one thing that is certain, acquiring a good quality mountain bike computer is a must. Smartphones may boast high-end features such as built-in or downloadable applications to track your sports-related activities, however, you may want to save your phone’s battery for other important tasks. Another reason is that smartphones were not specifically designed to monitor such activities, once the power is out you also lose the accuracy and of data that you are trying to record.

With those things mentioned, equipping yourself with the right tool will give you a good riding experience. Although it’s quite a challenge sometimes on which kind you should buy, one thing is certain is that you don’t need to spend too much on it.

What MTB computer should you buy then?

Depending on the brand and overall quality, it is possible to get one for less than a hundred dollars. Yes, you heard that right folks, there exists an array of affordable mountain bike computers that you can find on the market! To spare you the time on selecting which you should buy, we came up with a shortlist:

CatEye Velo 7 Cyclocomputer

Probably one of the most convenient buddies that you can go on while on a trip. This little wonder has been praised for its no-fuss installation and economical value. Most of its users liked this item since it gives them lesser time to mount the device on their mountain bikes in a couple of minutes with its easy-to-follow guide. Plus, it boasts a large display that makes it easy for riders to read its content.

Speaking of content, the CatEye Velo 7 offers the basic statistics of your trip such as total distance travelled, the distance between point A and B, and a well-recorded data of your biking speed. The CatEye brand is also popular among bikers and most of their products like the Velo 7 are well-received in the market.

Cons: Having a dimension of 3.9 x 2 x 2 inches and weighing 1 kilogram, CatEye Velo 7 may seem to be quite a bulky item. Although it claims to be water resistant, it is definitely not waterproof so for those relentless drivers who tend to drive in the rain, a word of advice on this – don’t let this item be expose to long period of wetness for a long time.

*Price: Starts from 23 to 30 USD per unit.

Shanren Raptor SR-BLC10

Complete with a backlight and a 300 lumens LED guide light to aid its users in dark areas or at night time and partnered with a real-time synchronizing feature, this velvety wireless MTB is definitely a must. The fun never stops there as Shanren’s SR-BLC10 model comes with a power-saving capability.

Aside from the basic functions of monitoring the duration, speed and distance of travel, its rechargeable built-in Li-ion battery can also be charged using a micro USB. Further, its firepower can give you a safe travel as it can give you light along the way for three to six hours. How amazing is that?

Cons: Full charging time is estimated at four hours, the sync feature was reviewed as quite faulty at times and some minor issues reported when it comes to its accuracy in counting the calories.

*Price: Starts at 40 USD.

Sigma Sport BC8.12 Mountain Bike Computer

Sigma’s MTB products have developed a good relationship among mountain bikers due to its high-quality products and the BC8.12 model is no exception. With its highly durable wiring and waterproof casing, this 45-gram travel wonder makes itself as a standout in the market as one of the ultimate survivors of extreme road adventures.

Another plus point of this model is that it features a speedometer that displays your instantaneous speed and an odometer/odograph to keep you updated with the amount of the distance that your bike has travelled. Aside from those, it also has a speed comparator, a lap timer, a clock and can also measure your riding time and average to maximum speed. All those features come at a reasonable price of around 24 USD. Sounds nice right?

Cons: However, most of its previous buyers complained of its missing magnet and the confusing depiction of its parts and complicated instructions on its manuals.

*Price: Starts at 24 USD.

CatEye Padrone Wireless Bike Computer

Going neon? CatEye knows best when it comes to diversifying its products. Its Padrone Wireless model is probably the most vibrant among its line of products as it comes in various colors (black, green, orange, blue, white and pink) to cater to its different patrons. It holds the essential features that CatEye is known for such as showing your average to maximum speed, a stopwatch, a clock, the total distance covered and the current speed.

Moreover than those, what makes Padrone Wireless an interesting find is that it only weighs 31 grams (roughly 1.1 ounces) and claims to have the largest MTB computer display in the market! The automatic stop/pause feature also functions very well so there’s no need to worry as Padrone Wireless assures you that it will give you an honest reading of your road trip.

Aside from exhibiting all those features, it also has an economical price tag and can be installed in no time.

Cons: While the Padrone Wireless is enjoying a good stature among novices and pros, its short battery lifespan (1 year) is the major issue as of the moment.

*Price: Starts at 55 USD.

XINTO Premium Bicycle and Odometer

The XINTO brand managed to offer us something that is cheap, and when we say cheap, we are talking about something that is worth just 12 USD! XINTO’s MTB computer can assure you that you get something that exceeds your expectations. For a few dollars, this versatile tool is weather-resistant, very compact and easy to operate.

Another cool stuff that makes it an exciting riding partner is that its small, compact feature (56 mm x 41 mm x 20 mm) weighs only around 90 grams (3.1 ounces), thereby ensuring that it won’t add any weight to your riding experience nor give you an adjustment time to make your ride a balanced one.

Basic features include the presence of speedometer and odometer, total riding time and distance covered and a one-year warranty is also available!

Cons: Automatic sleep mode will turn on once you became idle for more than five minutes, thereby prompting you to switch it on again by pressing any of its buttons. Ensure the required distance from the sensor as placing it beyond the 60 cm (23.6 inches) will result in a faulty performance.

*Price: Starts at 12 USD.

WHEN CHOOSING THE “BEST” MTB COMPUTER FOR YOU

Indeed, there are plenty of choices that you can choose from if you are interested in buying a mountain bike computer. Each type offers a specific set of features that may fully or just partially suit your needs so bear in mind that it might be a challenge to find the perfect one. One bit of a good advice is that to help you better in making the right decision prior to buying, create a short list of questions like this:

  • How much is my allocated budget?
  • What kind of brand do I prefer?
  • What are the current reviews of this brand/model?
  • Does it include the standard features that a novice/professional biker needs?
  • Is it user-friendly?
  • Does the quality match the price?
  • Is there a product or service warranty?

The list may go on and on as it depends on your preference. You may stick to your budget if you want or maybe add some more but be sure that you are getting the right quality of what you paid for. Probably you just need something today that is cheap and can guide you on your first steps as you explore this kind of sports activity while in the future you may want something that offers a generous amount of high-quality features.

Also, don’t be also hesitant to find someone who knows more about MTB computers, they may help you in choosing what fits you best. Nonetheless, just be sure about what you need and what you think is useful so that you will be able to find the perfect match for your bicycle.

* Price denotes the current base price of each item in the market, may vary depending on the geographical location, distributor and mode of delivery of the items.

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GradesFixer, 2019. What MTB Computer Should You Buy? [online] Available at: <https://gradesfixer.com/free-essay-examples/what-mtb-computer-should-you-buy/> [Accessed 12 July 2020].
GradesFixer. What MTB Computer Should You Buy? [Internet]. GradesFixer; 2019 [cited 2019 July 10]. Available from: https://gradesfixer.com/free-essay-examples/what-mtb-computer-should-you-buy/
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