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Garmin Forerunner 201 GPS watch(10 posts)

Garmin Forerunner 201 GPS watchtdok88
Feb 2, 2004 10:28 AM
This watch tracks your speed, average speed, distance and altitude (plus other features) using GPS. Accurate to within feet. Use it on any bike without having to wire your wheels. I use pipe insulation for my handlebar mount, $2.25 for 5 feet at the hardware store.

Good for measuring altitude gain and grade% when hill climbing. (You have to do the total feet gained in your mind. It only gives you current altitude).

When not biking use it for trail running, hiking or walking. Check it out.
Does is store and collect tracks?pitt83
Feb 2, 2004 11:25 AM
That's my one function I want in a GPS device. I've seen teh 201 for ~$200. The mapping ones aren't set up for cycling type functions and are real pricey. I also like the Timex system, but it doesn't map either.

For as cheap as memory is these days, you'd think...
Feb 2, 2004 11:41 AM
It stores up to two years worth of workouts plus there is software at to download your workouts from the watch to your computer.

The mapping function is minimal to keep the unit small. You can mark points on your workout but there are no landmarks on the mapping function, just a breadcrumb trail of where you've been.

I got mine at Amazon for $129.00. I returned the Timex bodylink, too much stuff (This is my personal preference) to take care of. It is a good unit also. It has the heartrate moniter. Sometimes I take my HRM, some times I don't.
Hmmm. I'll have to lookpitt83
Feb 2, 2004 12:14 PM
Breadcrumb trails? I assume you can upload those to mapping software and overlay to make maps? Our club has a Garimn 5. Works nice, but $$$. I'm not the keeper of it, so it's tough to spontaneously decide I want to map out a ride.

I'll have to take a closer look. Thanks.
product link and reviewtdok88
Feb 2, 2004 12:26 PM
re: Garmin Forerunner 201 GPS watchLandsharkrider
Feb 2, 2004 1:09 PM
The functions are great but that is one ugly-a$$ watch!
I ride in canyons quite a bit - will it still work?BowWow
Feb 2, 2004 1:23 PM
I haven't tried GPS yet because I'm not sure a GPS could acquire all the satellites it needs where I ride - canyons with virtually no horizons, heavy tree cover, slopes of mountains that offer only a 180 degree or less horizon, etc...

What is your experience here?
I ride in canyons quite a bit - will it still work?tdok88
Feb 2, 2004 2:31 PM
I have ridden in the Santa Monica mountains and had good luck. I was road riding next to a stand of tall leafy trees (20-30 feet to my right) for about a 1.5 mile stretch and started to have trouble receiving a signal. There is a function that continues to measure time and distance using your average. When I passed the stand of trees it reconnected to the GPS signal. Maybe e-mail the manufacturer. Good luck.
Depends on the model. Small Garmin stuff sucksPierre
Feb 2, 2004 4:07 PM
I've tried the Garmin etrex Legend, with its patch antenna (same as forerunner model as far as I know), the reception is quite poor. On a cloudy day in LA I had trouble getting signal. Same in a car if it is not on the dashboard. I didn't even try under trees or in a canyon, the cloudy-day-no-signal was enough to piss me off and return it. Too bad, because Garmin displays are good and their mapping software is the best. From what I've read in reviews, the Garmin GPSmap76S has a better antenna, but it is also larger/heavier.

I am currently using a competitor unit, the Magellan sportrak color. It has mapping, the quality of the screen is not great but it has a good resolution, and the mapping softwares are crappy. But the reception is good (larger antenna), so overall I'm quite satisfied. And it's small enough to carry in a jersey pocket or in a saddlebag. The main complaint I have with regards to this unit is 'why doesn't it accept SD cards as the magellan meridian series ???'

The Garmin GPS V mentioned above is a good model with mapping and a good antenna, but it's quite large/heavy for carrying on a bike.

MTB experiencespitt83
Feb 2, 2004 3:59 PM
The Garmin V will lose signal periodically. It's usually not too long and will interpolate back what it didn't collect. Your map afterwards can be a bit odd especially if you've made a turn and it missed that. My bud's Magellan is better (sport track) with that, but it still drops out. It's better because it doesn't always search. You tell it where you are and it locks one satellite. That at least tells it where to look for 2 more. The Garmin always looks for 3 or more to draw a position. If it only has 2, you're SOL.

I doubt canyons will be friendly. You need more than straight up but 180 panorama probably OK. I'd say at least a 60 degree hole in the sky to get good signal.