View Full Version : Garmin 520 vs 820

12-25-2017, 08:20 PM
Question for experienced Garmin users:. 520 vs 820

Is it worth the extra $ for the 820? It appears the difference is a touch screen and interactive mapping as opposed to a present route. Any other features.

12-25-2017, 08:23 PM
It's generally never worth paying more than what you need, or will need in the future. So first determine your needs and then you'll have your answer. Having said that, sometimes extra features only cost a little. Still, I recommend only buying what you need. And mapping might be the best determinant.

12-25-2017, 11:58 PM
If you want navigation (and really want a Garmin), yes. Otherwise, probably no.

But Garmin software is quite bad. Take a look at Wahoo’s Bolt.

12-26-2017, 05:22 AM
820 if realtime GPS mapping is something you want. Otherwise the 520 is the way to go between those two. Buttons are better than touch screens IMO.

12-26-2017, 05:53 AM
The touch screen buttons are not always perfect on the 820, but I personally was annoyed all the time with the 520 not being touch screen since the 510 did have them.

12-26-2017, 07:03 AM

I have both and in the cold or wet weather the 520 is on the bike.
The buttons are better to me (Gloves and rain drops doesn’t like touch screen’s)
Summer or traveling the 820 is great.
I,m a Garmin / Apple fan so what do I know.
Jere B

12-26-2017, 09:24 AM
One other difference that I didn't know about was Trek's Ion light that connect to your computer won't be controllable with a 520, Evidently, they only designed them to work with the touch screen computers.

I have had a 500, then a 510, and now a 520. Of the 3, I like the 520 best. Picks up satellites VERY fast. The buttons work better than a touch screen. Picks up both power meters, all 3 HR straps, and anything else you can think of without having to program what bike they belong to.

Unlike some, I've never had problems with the software.

So... if you don't need mapping, get the 520


01-09-2018, 09:00 PM
i just ordered a wahoo element to replace my 520. I have heard from several people that the 820 touch screen is not reliable.

01-10-2018, 12:39 AM
I'd go with the 520 because I'd much prefer the buttons. I have the 820 and not terribly impressed with the touch screen.