At A Glance
The world of bike computers has moved on beyond recognition from the early days of magnets on spokes and wires running up forks. These days my phone has replaced any sort of computer or GPS on the bike and using Strava and some mapping software together I have a pretty good setup. However, it does live in my pocket and doesn't give me very accurate on-the-fly data. Therefore, enter the Mega C GPS, a device to convince me that bar mounted GPS systems can be simple, effective and user-friendly.Buy Watches on
The MEGA C has a 2.2-inch colour display and uses this to show colourful displays or numbers and data. What is clever, is that is pairs to your phone with the Ally V2 App which allows for the processing power of your smartphone to be channelled through the GPS. This means routes can be planned on the app and then navigation instructions are sent to the unit in real time giving step-by-step directions. The Bluetooth connection also allows your phone details to be displayed, specifically battery power and messages or alerts.
If you want to get all the painful data, then ANT+ or Bluetooth power meters, heart rate monitors and cadence sensors can all be added to the party. If you're really posh then you can also connect your wireless drivetrain so it can tell you what gear you're in. The device features a barometer and accelerometer to keep things accurate and will last for 32hours!
A clever safety feature is Lezyne Track, which sends an email out to a preselected list of recipients once you start a ride allowing them to track you on your ride.
On The Trail
Setting up the MEGA C GPS could not be easier, effortlessly switch on and start moving. At this point, it will detect movement and ask if you wish to record, simple. The only tricky bit is mounting the device on the bars, which needs a couple of elastic bands stretched around and hooked on, a system which doesn't match up to the quality of the technology in the device. The rudimentary fitting has, however, performed flawlessly and, although fiddly to move between bikes, still worked well. The twist lock onto the mount is sturdy and secure, I'd just a like a more anchored attachment to the bars.
The display on the unit is big and clear, with colour coding for all the different things you may have connected. I'm not usually one for heart rate monitors and power meters, I just wanted the device to record my rides accurately, so my phone battery would be preserved. I also wanted to be able to plan routes for long gravel bike adventures.
In response to my first need, the MEGA C does a fine job of recording rides accurately and efficiently. With 32 hours of run time, you're unlikely to run out of battery and it provides all the data you can consume out on the trail. Speed, average speed, height, height gain, temperature, the list goes on, and obviously more can be added with cadence and power if needed. After a ride, the simplest way to upload the ride is with the Lezyne App, from which you can then share info to your heart's content across all your favourite social media channels. The analysis within the app is good, though I still uploaded to Strava for segment data. Those of you on Strava Premium can connect for live segments so you can smash your QOM/KOM goals on the fly.
With regard to navigation, this is best done with the Lezyne App, which is simple and effective to use. Just keep tapping along the route you wish and it will plot a course and record directions to be relayed on to the device. I did try using a Google Maps plot that I converted to GPS, but this didn't have the navigation data, so using the app is more handy in this respect.
To make the navigation work best, you first plot and save a route, then download offline maps for the areas you're riding in. This then allows the screen to display the upcoming road/trail junction and show where the path heads next. All of this is accompanied by an alert on the top of the screen with an arrow and a countdown on the metres remaining to the junction.
I did get geeky and add a heart rate monitor to test the connectivity and found that the ANT+ connection was easy to use and reliable, allowing me to judge how much I was hurting myself in real time. ANT+ is crucial for connecting multiple devices as Bluetooth only allows for one pairing at a time.
Planning routes on well-established trails work well, but the mapping in the app won't know all the local hidden trails or complex networks or mountain bike trails in the woods. Best to get a GPS file from a previous ride and follow that if you're really off the beaten track.
The app itself has been easy to use and reliable, something that is essential for this device to work well. Where other brands bike apps have been lacking this was stable, never crashed and provided a great user interface.
The construction of the MEGA C is excellent and with a chunky rubber cover for the USB charger, it's fully waterproof and able to take knocks easily and still keep going.
Simple and easy to use, for a mountain biker that wants an accurate recording of rides and excellent navigation functions, the MEGA C GPS fits the bill, yet offers a huge range of expandable features for fitness training and more data than you'll know what to do with.
For more information visit Lezyne
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By Ewen TurnerEwen Turner is a self-confessed bike geek from Kendal in the Lake District of England. He runs a coaching and guiding business up there and has a plethora of knowledge about bikes with an analytical approach to testing. His passion for bicycles is infectious, and he’s a ripper on the trails who prefers to fit his working life around his time on the bike.