Garmin Edge 20 and Edge 25

Tiny, tiny new cycling computers!

The Edge 20 and Edge 25 are VERY similar devices but differ on a couple of points, which I’ll address later. In the range of Garmin, you can put them as replacements for the Edge 200. A bit on the lower end of the budget realm and the option (with the Edge 25) for external sensors. It’s a cycling computer with a somewhat limited feature set, but covers all the basics. All images in this review should be clickable and open up a larger detail shot. But first let’s have a look at the box:

Garmin-Edge-25-01

A nice sleek rectangular box, with not much in there actually, you’ll find the device itself, a USB charging cable, mounts for your bike and a quick start guide:

The Edge 25 and Edge 25 have the same mount we know from Garmin Computers and watch adaptors and thus will fit in place of your current (note that watches are usually 90 degrees turned). Let’s look at the device itself:

Garmin-Edge-25-04

 

And here it is mounted, and some pictures all around:

As you can see it only has four buttons, from top left to bottom right:

Top left: Light, On/Off
Top Right: Start/Stop/Confirm/Select
Bottom left: Back/Lap (set manually)
Bottom right: scroll.

Only having a down button is a bit confusing at first, but the options in the menu’s are mostly short, so you don’t really miss an ‘up’ button. Navigating through the menu’s is simple too.

For charging you receive an USB cable which you can snap on the back of the device, note that you do not receive an adaptor. The device can charge itself on your computer.
Garmin-Edge-25-28 Garmin-Edge-25-29Garmin-Edge-25-08

Specifications

As stated numerous times, it’s small. 1.6” x 1.6” x 0.7” (4.0 x 4.2 x 1.7 cm) to be exact. Also it only weighs 0.9 oz (25 g), which is just about the weight of a typical Alkaline AA battery. It’s so small I’ve actually lost track of it in my device drawer once or twice. The screen has excellent visibility and has 128 x 160 pixels with a backlight function (auto off/always on), you don’t have to worry about torrential rain as it’s IPX7 certified, which basically means you can take a swim with it. For you who already have a Garmin mounted, here is a great photo to see just how small it is:

Garmin Edge 25 Size Reference

Just a bit bigger than a standard bike mount!

I’ve shot another picture on the girl’s bike, which has a really short stem:Garmin Edge 25 on a short stem

The small size of it somewhat limits the battery capacity which comes specified at “up to” 8hrs. And it will auto shut down after a couple of minutes when not in use in a 30 second count down sequence. The memory is limited to 10 rides but can have courses loaded on it as well.

GLONASS

As the Garmin 920XT the Edge 20 and Edge 25 have GLONASS support. This is useful when you have limited GPS coverage or ar just cycling in conditions with make it hard. GLONASS is an extra system, besides GPS, to pinpoint your location. So in stead of using just one system, you can tap in two. Making your location more accurate. You have to enable the system manually and it does drain the battery a bit more (my guesstimate is ~20%).

Cycling

The mounting of the Edge 20 and Edge 25 is easy, the device comes with the classic garmin mount and enough rubber straps for two steers, either oversized or normal. After you’ve installed it, pairing ANT sensors is easy too (Edge 25 only!). During the ride, it’s big enough to see what’s going on, as the data pages have three and two fields the digits are big enough to see.

Displays

For your date you have the option for two pages with three and two fields. Options are limited though, Time, Distance, Speed, Avg. speed, Calories, Cadence, Total Ascent, Cadence and that’s it. However, on the Edge 25 you have an extra page with your heart rate and zone. And when you follow a course you automatically get a course page too. You can’t turn the pages off or opt for only one or two field, so you have to pick five. And as usual you can auto scroll through the pages.

Courses

You can repeat a ride you’ve done before and you can also create a course online or from a GPX file to have something to follow. I know this feature from other Garmin devices, it’s just a little line drawn out. Quite limited as you can’t zoom in or out, but you get the direction you’re supposed to go and it’s zoomed in enough to know you’re supposed to turn left or right.

It will give you an indication when you’re of course and the courses can turn prompts too, but I haven’t seen it do this, maybe it requires some extra data.

Course navigation on the Garmin Edge 25

A little line to follow, in not so busy area’s this is enough to follow a course.

You also get a page where you can see if you’re faster or slower than last time, if you’ve make a course from a ride and you can get segment alerts. These are not Strava segments, but the Garmin segments.

Differences between Edge 20 and 25

The Edge 20 and 25 are almost identical on the outside, except for the color scheme. It’s the internals where the 25 is different.

The Edge 25 has the following

  • Support for ANT+ sensors (Speed, Cadence, Speed&Cadence and Heart Rate, note: no power!)
  • Bluetooth Smart support for pairing and syncing with iPhone / Android
  • Smart notifications
  • Set HR alerts
  • Heart Rate page with bpm and zone

Because of the support for ANT+ the Edge 25 can track your effort of speed and distance indoors too.

Live Tracking & Notifications

The Edge 25, when paired with a phone will allow live tracking and notifications to be displayed. Live tracking is fun to share whereabouts you are and notifications are then nice too as you can get a text to cheer you on!

Photos & Video

I made a video where I walk over the menu and features in about 5 minutes:

I also took quite some more photo’s than I could naturally fit in this review, but they can help you see if they’d fit on your bike and if the device is something you’d like, so here they are:

Overall

If it were up to me I’d opt for the Edge 25 if you have to choose between the two, but I can’t look in your wallet. The features are a bit limited though, but for a recreational rider it’s enough. If you want more, you’ll have to look at other Garmin devices (or Polar M450) where you can plan more and have more support and customisation options. But if you’re just a casual rider, want to know where and how fast you were going, the Edge series will give you exactly that.

Edge 20: $100 on Amazon

Edge 25: $132 on ProBikeKit

Edge 25 with HRM: $162 on ProBikeKit
Note: it appears that the HRM strap is not the ‘premium’ soft-strap, which I personally prefer as it’s more comfortable. The Premium HR strap is available for $43 on Amazon, but you can use any ANT+ strap for that matter.

 

8 Comments on Garmin Edge 20 and Edge 25

  1. Thanks for the review. I am interested in the Edge 25 because of the Bluetooth connectivity. However, I have read reports from early users that people are having problems saving their settings. Have you had any problems with your unit? How reliable is the Bluetooth pairing with your phone?. Do you have to remember open the Garmin connect app before you start a ride to use the Bluetooth pairing?.

    • I’d love to tell you the down low on this, but the bluetooth on my phone is very troublesome with all devices. For me, I did manage to pair and sync rides, but I was unable to test the smart notifications and live tracking. But: that’s because of my phone. I’ve had similar problems with Polar, Mio, Wahoo, etc.
      P.S. Yes I’m buying a new phone.

  2. Thanks for the quick response. I believe it only works with Bluetooth Smart phones so my Samsung Galaxy S3 Mini probably wont work with it, but i will be upgrading my phone next year anyway. I wanted some basic navigation and the breadcrumb trail looks good. However I have also seen a Mio Cyclo 505 2nd hand at a very cheap price (cheaper than a new Edge 25) which obviously has full mapping/navigation features. The only thing that puts me off the Mio is its large size, I just cant decide.

  3. How do you turn the backlight to always on?

  4. Hey, thanks for a thorough review. I already got this unit and am trying to figure out how to load courses to it.. I converted my gpx files in some online converter, but the garmin is refusing to accept more then one at the time.. Even thiugh, they are very small files and the memory is almost empty. I would be really happy if there would be an option to load in enough courses to follow for the whole weekend, or even being able to load them in through the mobile phone.. Do you have a ready walkaround for this issue? Please let me know..

  5. Hi there, could you please tell me how to turn off the auto power down on the Edge 20

  6. Hi, I am interested in the Garmin Edge 25. I would like to mount it on my stem however the stem on my bike is really small. Can you tell me the minimum stem length required to mount the device? Thanks.

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