Over the last year we've seen the arrival of the first cycling-specific mapping devices
It would seem that during the years that Garmin has sponsored pro teams it has listened to feedback on its devices.
We have previously seen the Edge 205 device that used GPS to display speed and distance as well as record your route. This was part of Garmin’s initial range of cycling computers. When we tested the eTrex Vista handheld GPS with mapping we found it to be a very useful piece of kit although it needed a few more cycling-specific functions to be truly indispensable. It seems that Garmin has listened to our pleas as the new 705 has literally everything we need from a computer.
Cables and wheel magnets can become a thing of the past and the large display can be customised to show as many or as few pieces of information as you like.
The bundled mapping has the whole of the UK on it with other maps available. As well as street level mapping, the Garmin displays contour lines that help give you an idea of the severity of any chosen routes.
Post-ride analysis is done using the supplied software with routes exported to Google Earth, much like the GTrek in this test.
On-bike use is a simple affair with a very intuitive menu system. It can be used right out of the box. Just zip-tie the handlebar mount, charge the unit and ride. Once you become more familiar with it and explore the menu options it becomes clear just how good for cycling this is.
It records rides that you do and can navigate you around them again or round routes that you can pick up off the internet or design yourself. Functions like auto-lap where the unit automatically records a lap when you pass the same piece of road twice is ingenious.
As a cycling-specific computer, we think that the Garmin 705 will be a tough piece of kit to beat and as a GPS device we would have to say the same.