If you’re a keen rider, whether competitive or commuter, you’ll want to invest in the best cycling computer to keep track of your routes, your speed, and how long it’s taken you.
The best cycling computers depend on what you are looking for. A basic model will have a good battery life, tell you how far you’ve been and how fast, and generally be smaller and lighter. But you can also add more bells and whistles, like a navigation GPS function, elevation tracker, and heart rate and power monitors.
More serious cyclists can invest in cycling computers that offer training performance improvements and smart features, but you can also enrich any ride with a simple speed and time-tracker that offers weather updates and basic navigation functions.
Below we’ve rounded up the best cycling computers below to make your rides more fun, competitive and easier to navigate.
Best cycling computer for 2020
This aerodynamic system is built to be on the front of your bike, and is easy to use, with different pages for laps, maps, and climbing on quick-look LED indicators.
It has an integrated GPS system and turn-by-turn navigation, and you can easily create a training plan with data sent back to correlating apps.
There’s also a nifty Live Track feature that anyone can access via the Elemnt Companion App, meaning loved ones can follow your ride location and check you’re safe, or ideal for meeting fellow riders on your route.
An excellent all-rounder at a good price, this cycling computer is ideal for both on and off-road riding.
It comes with the Garmin Cycle Map preloaded with turn-by-turn directions meaning you can follow the best routes and trails easily.
Competitive streak? The Strava Live Segments also allow you to compete second by second with your own previous best or another rider’s personal best.
It has a battery life of 15 hours, and the LiveTrack and GroupTrack connectivity functions allow you to receive smart notifications and engage in rider-to-rider messaging. There’s also heart rate sensors and power monitoring capability.
If you’re looking for a reliable, basic cycling computer and don’t need connectivity, this is a great option.
It’s easy to read, has excellent speed and distance accuracy, and great battery life.
One Amazon reviewer enthused: “The dial is very clear and the whole set is exactly what I wanted. If you want something that just shows speed, mileage ridden etc, I definitely recommend this.”
Another brilliant basic and affordable option, this Backture cycling computer is perfect for beginners looking to take riding to the next level.
It has 19 functions and measures speed, distance, riding time, calories burned, and temperature, among others.
For such an affordable option, it keeps its accuracy well, even in bad weather, is easy to read, and the screen can be backlit for tunnels or low light.
Not a fan of large bike computers weighing you down? This clever, compact gadget will be right up your cycle route.
It boasts everything you need to navigate your ride, monitor stats and stay connected. It’s easy to read in all conditions, gets smart notifications and weather updates.
With GPS and a built-in barometer, it tracks how far, how fast and how high you’ve ridden, and can even direct you back to your starting location.
It can also help you improve your performance, letting you see how many watts of power you’re producing on a flat section or a steep hill. Understanding where you are producing power helps not only with training, it also makes for a more exciting ride. You can make every ride more interesting by racing in real time against Garmin and Strava Live Segments, giving you that extra nudge to really push yourself.
Keep things simple and stylish with this petrol-blue bike computer that sits neatly on the bars.
Like a smart compass, it gives you as-the-crow-flies direction; set your destination with the Beeline app and the smart-compass arrow shows you the straight line distance and direction to head in, giving you the freedom to pick your own route.
You can also track your rides through the app, seeing how far you’ve ridden in what time, and sharing your rides and discoveries with friends.
It also has a super-long battery life of up to 30 hours of use.
More advanced than the 5 series, the 8 series is for anyone really serious about cycling and competing.
Turn-by-turn GPS navigation and an altimeter tell you how fast, how high, how far you’ve gone and where you’ve travelled.
Whether you’re training for a race or just trying to reach your personal goals, it also gives you high-tech performance monitoring like VO2 max, recovery advisor time and enhanced cycling dynamics when used with a Garmin heart rate monitor (which is included) and power meter (sold separately).
Comprehensive cycling awareness features include built-in incident detection for road cycling use and compatibility with Garmin Varia rear view radar.
What’s more, the GroupTrack feature allows you to keep tabs on other riders in your pack, in-ride challenges through Strava Live Segments, and smart notifications. A nifty bit of kit.