Best GPS for declining eyesight?
Hello – what do you find is best for visibility, garmins, wahoos, phone-on-the-bars, etc?
I’ve been using a lezyne macro for years now, but my eyesight isn’t what it used to be, so I’m looking for something with a bigger and/or clearer display.
(I only wear specs for reading and screens, distance vision and anything over a meter away is OK. )Posted 4 months ago
What do you use it for?
My first thought would be one of the big Garmins, if you reduce the number of fields displayed then the text is quite big. Big screen means map viewing should be easier too.Posted 4 months ago
thanks lunge – should have said, mostly used for navigation, rather than cycle computer features.Posted 4 months ago
I suffered with this, until my daughter bought me some photochromic riding glasses that are bifocal.
The main part is a normal photochromic plastic and the bottom segment is a +2 reading lens. They are amazing. They came from Merlin cycles and are made by BBB if i remember correctly. The were £30 and are brilliant!
IanPosted 4 months ago
I did exactly the same as breninbeener but with the posh rad8 ones and now live in them. Great for running, hiking, and general reading
One of my best buys!Posted 4 months ago
Cheap phone. Let’s you have a bigger screen for not much money and you can pinch zoom. Biggest issue is probably weather proofing, most phones can actually take a bit of rain but the touch screen doesn’t work so well. Overall it works fine. Lots of apps, easy to connect to, easy to use, way cheaper than a Garmin.Posted 4 months ago
Wahoo don’t have the biggest display, but they have the best contrast in my opinion, especially on the maps. Permanent back-light too, ideal for low light conditions.
I ran mine alongside an eTrex recently and barely looked at the eTrex because it felt like so much effort, requiring way too much concentration.
You can also with the push of a button reduce the number of fields. You can have one field fill the screen if you like. Put them all on separate pages. All massively configurable.Posted 4 months ago
Wahoo’s displays are certainly way clearer than Garmin’s: contrast is much better and the maps are much simpler. However they’re also quite small compared to the larger Garmins, and the typography (not just the typeface but the clumsy rendering of it) can be pretty poor from a readability point of view (something they’ve addressed in the new Bolt, though I’ve not seen one so I don’t know how much better it is).
When it comes to Garmins, I think they’ve now stopped using the horrible square typeface they used on the 800 which had poor readability for sub-par vision, but the maps are generally awful from a clarity point of view and the displays aren’t great for contrast. I’ve ended up building custom maps which are way easier to read. But you can configure multiple pages with big numbers, whereas if I recall Wahoo just give you one page which you can “zoom” (of sorts) in and out of. Maybe my memory fails me and you can have multiple pages.
Haven’t tried Hammerhead yet.
I’d say if you want clear but basic mapping then maybe lean to Wahoo; if you want a few key metrics displayed large then Garmin. But both have flaws.
YMMV. I’ve gone from gradually increasing blurriness to bifocals to varifocals… I think that’s an inevitable path as your eyes get older…Posted 4 months ago
Thanks all – some very useful insight there. I’m sitting in front of a computer screen right now , with the little lezyne, and WITH glasses on, it’s fine. I reckon the answer ought to be bifocals, however I tried/trialled them for 3 days in the past but just couldn’t get on with them, literally falling over, didn’t dare use them whilst cycling.Posted 4 months ago
Can you pop a pair of Poundland reading glasses in your bag/pocket?
Or do you have to look at the screen too much?Posted 4 months ago
@Bez Bolt 2 typeface is much clearer than the original. Don’t put more than 6 data fields on the page and my longsighted eyes can read it if I squint slightly.
OP have you considered getting some bi-focal glasses/sunglasses with the reader lens at the base and plain lens for the main part? Google is suggesting Maui Jim do them but there are cheaper options around £100. I believe that you could be stuffed if your reading correction is greater than +3.5Posted 4 months ago
… whereas if I recall Wahoo just give you one page which you can “zoom” (of sorts) in and out of. Maybe my memory fails me and you can have multiple pages.
You can have as many pages as you like, all with your chosen data fields. This is all customisable through the phone app which syncs the setup to your unit.
On the unit itself, you can zoom in to reduce the number of data fields on each page via the up and down buttons.Posted 4 months ago
I wouldn’t want bifocals for normal use but I found they worked quite well for cycling with a GPS: the only time you look through the reading part is when you’re looking straight down. The rest of the time it barely registers in your peripheral vision.
It helps to have quite “tall” frames if you’re going to have bi/varifocals. Then you’ve got a decent amount of scope for separating the different fields: so you can move the bifocal bits right down where they won’t bother you when you’re looking ahead.
Eventually my near vision inevitably worsened to the point where I was changing between three pairs of glasses throughout the day and at that point the only option was top-end varifocals… takes a couple of weeks to get used to them but once you do, for everyday use (I still wear single visions for working with monitors at head height) it’s like having your vision pretty much back to normal.Posted 4 months ago
I grabbed a Lezyne Mega XL for a bargaintastic £136 from Amazon around Xmas, it was the last one in stock at that price, otherwise I would have done a PSA. I wanted one for the offline routing, because once or twice in the last four years with my Y10 Lezyne Super GPS I’ve ridden in relatively remote areas such as around the Mendip hills where my mobile’s Three SIM connection goes flaky, making the real-time re-routing go crazy.
Usually I wear glasses all day, but on my road rides I just wear normal cycling glasses, it’s fine because my eyesight isn’t that bad.
The Mega XL is ~25% bigger in each direction compared to the Super GPS and you also have the option to use a landscape rotation, not that I’ve tried that yet. There’s also a zoom feature on the map screen, again I’ve not needed to use it yet, plus you can save multiple offline map areas.Posted 4 months ago
+1 for a Wahoo. I went with the ELEMNT and have multiple screens set up for the data I might want embiggened to toggle between. Using an ‘out front’ mount keeps it far enough away for me to focus without straining.
There’s a bloke at my cycle club who was using stick on lens at bottom of his regular cycling glasses as DIY bifocals. Seemed to be working ok for him, but I’ve not got around to trying to do likewise. Said they were about a fiver from AMZ and can be trimmed down to be pretty discreet.
Edit: Gah, missed a pun there! Should have been “+1[.5 dioptre] for a Wahoo”Posted 4 months ago
I’ve moved from Garmin to Wahoo mostly because of the better legibility of maps/ routes. I used to find the Garmin route was more or less illegible and if have to keep stopping and trying to work out if I was still on route. The Wahoo is much better and battery life/ route porting/ live route makes it better all-round for me. Admittedly the Wahoo interface is better (just) than the GarminPosted 4 months ago
I have a reading prescription contact lens in my less dominant eye. Suits me.Posted 4 months ago
How about something like these?Posted 4 months ago
Those are no good for me @lorax, I can see well looking ahead, it’s just the closer detail on my GPS I can -no longer focus on.Posted 4 months ago
I took breninbeener’s tip and bought a pair of BBB bifocals from merlin, unfortunately the bottom inner corner of each lens is poking into my (generously proportioned) nose.
So I’m toying with returning them, OR fooling around with a file to amend the shape, discover that I’ve ruined them and then furiously throw them in the bin.
VoltX safety specs on Amazon with reading insert. I’ve found them really good and you can get a set of clear, yellow and smoke for £30. No problem now reading the screen on my 520
Edit – as lorax has linked toPosted 4 months ago
I’ve used Hydrotac stick-on bifocals before; they worked ok but they’re a right pain to keep clean so they became less satisfactory over time.Posted 4 months ago
+1 on the voltX bi-focals from Amazon – much cheapness 😊 and sorts out my near vision issues.Posted 4 months ago
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