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Garmin Edge 540 and 840 Series Update Features and Introduces Solar Options

Garmin Edge 540 edge 840 MTB side
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Garmin introduces new additions to its Edge series; the all-new Edge 540 and Edge 840 Series. The new units are an updated compact design that allows for easy functionality and personalization, no matter what cycling discipline you’re after. The series combines performance-based training metrics, enhanced navigational support, connected features, and more.

Garmin Edge 540 edge 840 MTB side

New solar charging models (similar to the Edge 1040S) supply more ride time between charges with up to 32 hours of battery life (in fully engaged modes) or up to 60 hours in battery-saver mode.

What is it — Garmin Edge 540 / 840

Garmin Edge 540 edge 840 side buttons

The new Edge 540 and 840 carry over the user interface from the Edge 1040 and supply a more pleasant user experience—the updated interface ties in seamlessly with Garmin Connect to provide cyclists with dynamic insights and analytics. Plus – riders can track all metrics and create a page to view them while on a ride, like; stamina, body battery, time to exhaustion, performance indicator, power goals, pedaling coach, and much (much) more.

Updated Design

Garmin Edge 540 edge 840 charging

All Edge 540 and 840 Series models have a 2.6-inch color display and feature button controls that work efficiently in any riding environment. The Edge 840 Series computers also include a responsive touchscreen similar to the Edge 1040. This sizing is a slight departure from the convention of the 800 series being slightly larger than the 500, though functionality and accuracy remain equal.

Improved Mapping, Navigation, and Exploring

Garmin Edge 540 edge 840 maps

Updated mapping brings more of a community feel, with improved ride type-specific maps that use Trendline Popularity Routing to highlight roads and trails. The maps include searchable points of interest, like coffee shops and other fun features.

Garmin Edge 540 edge 840 front

Edge 540 and 840 Series users can access worldwide Trailforks trail content, allowing riders to view routes and trail details even while traveling. If you’re feeling like a detour (or just exploring), you can pause route guidance and off-course notifications to jaunt around the area and turn navigation back on at your convenience.

Messaging and Safety

Garmin Edge 540 edge 840 satmana

The updated Edge 540 and Edge 840 come with LiveTrack, group messaging, and incident detection for all cycling activities–including mountain biking. Like all Garmin devices, Edge 540 and Edge 840 Series are compatible with the Varia line of cycling radars, headlights, and inReach devices with SOS capabilities and communication when off-the-grid.

New features — Edge 540 and 840

Garmin Edge 540 edge 840 MTB
  • Riding ability and course demands: Identify strengths and weaknesses as a cyclist and prepare for the demands of a specific course by focusing training in the right areas
  • Targeted adaptive coaching: Whether cycling indoors or outdoors, riders can view daily suggested workouts and training prompts, plus receive personalized coaching that adapts based on training load, recovery, and the demands of upcoming events.
  • Real-time stamina: Monitor and track exertion levels in real-time during a ride to help influence training efforts or see how much further the current pace can be maintained
  • Power guide: Manage efforts with power targets throughout a course
  • ClimbPro ascent planner: View the remaining ascent and grade for each climb while riding
    freely without course navigation or search for climbs directly on the Edge and in the Garmin ConnectTM smartphone app before heading out.
  • Multi-band GNSS: Cyclists can easily find their way with enhanced positioning accuracy via multi-band GNSS technology. Edge 540/840 operates well in challenging environments, such as dense tree cover or downtown urban environments.
  • Solar charging: Power GlassTM solar charging lens on solar models extends battery life to up to 60 hours in battery-saver mode, giving cyclists up to an extra 25 minutes per hour during daytime riding. *Only for Solar units.

Garmin Edge 540 Solar — First Impressions

Garmin Edge 540 edge 840 saide back

I was excited to hear that Garmin was releasing Edge 540/840 models. I’m a fan of the Edge 1040S, but it’s a giant head unit best used on the road and touring.

Garmin Edge 540 edge 840 inferface

The unit is compact, and the solar panel surrounding the 2.5″ screen doesn’t interfere with viewing. Like its other units, Garmin updated the charging to C-type and snuck in a replaceable mount for those rough on their head units (raises hand).

Garmin Edge 540 edge 840 back

When the head unit arrived, I was running behind on a ride and was looking to set it up as quickly as possible. The updated Garmin Connect interface for setting up a new device was fantastic. I could adjust and customize my screens on the phone quickly.

Garmin Edge 540 edge 840 side

On the road and in the woods, I was delighted with the performance of the Edge 540S. Though, when you begin to use all the auto features without checking (or unchecking), you might be in for a noisy ride.

Garmin Edge 540 edge 840 side buttons

For those that enjoy a beepless ride, you’ll need to uncheck the features during setup. I quickly discovered that all my favorite Strava segments were ready to conquer via the Garmin Connect auto-sync— same with Climb Pro and auto-lap every five miles. After lots of beeping every few minutes, I stopped to uncheck the segments, climb, and laps. It’s easy and something I should have done preride — lesson learned.

Garmin Edge 540 edge 840 reg screen

Changing from the larger touchscreen 1040S, I thought I would encounter some issues pivoting to a non-touchscreen unit. On the contrary, I liked it more, especially for off-road use. The size is ideal for mountain bike use, and the bright color screen is very easy to see in the forest. The lap and start/stop buttons are slightly smaller than the previous version but are easy enough to tap with gloves and during an effort.

Garmin Edge 540 edge 840 weight

As far as the buttons go (seven in total), all are easy to access while riding. The screen toggle button (bottom left) has a minor groove making it very pleasant to operate with the index finger, and it requires very little pressure.

Garmin Edge 540 edge 840 battery

The solar panels gather power just as smoothly as with the Edge 1040S and with the same screens urging you to place it in the sun.

Garmin updated the interface with intuitive features like holding the menu button for 3 seconds to access the whole menu and other smart updates. I thought navigating the unit without a touch screen could be cumbersome, but I was effortlessly flying around the interface after a few rides. Plus — it seems Garmin is rapidly updating the unit, and the interface is getting easier to operate.

Final Impressions

So far, I’ve been very pleased with the Edge 540S. I’ve used it in muddy races, and it’s been power washed and dropped a few times (sorry Garmin). Seeing such a resilient powerhouse of a head unit in a small package is fantastic — Check back for a full review shortly.

Garmin Edge 540 edge 840 distance

Garmin Edge 540 / Edge 840 Pricing and Availablity

The Garmin Edge 540 Solar and Edge 840 Solar are available now from your local bike shop and Garmin dealer.

  • Edge 840 Solar Price: $550
    Edge 540 Solar Price: $450
  • Non-Solar Edge 840 Price: $450
    Non-Solar Edge 540 Price: $350

For more information, check out: Garmin.com

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1 year ago

All the great upgrades, but still think the screen should cover more space from edge to edge.

1 year ago

These images are perfect! I’ve been disappointed ever since I bought my Edge 830. And your images show precisely why. In most lighting conditions I can’t see the darn thing. It is loaded with fabulous features. But if I can’t see it, what good is it. And BTW, I can’t hear it either. The beep is far too faint to be heard over wind noise even at 15 mph. Buyer beware.

1 year ago

Did garmin update their navigation algorithms so when going off course it intelligently directs you back to your route? Current 830 directs you back to the point you departed the route which is not useful especially when you find a closed road on your planned ride.

Also, have they re-introduced the ability to disable Virtual Partner like the 810 had?

1 year ago
Reply to  syborg

The Explore 2 — introduced last fall — has done a good job re-routing on the fly when I’ve changed course. I’d expect these to similar navigation capability.

r m
r m
1 year ago

Aside from the solar charging, these all sound like software updates. In this day and age, I would expect to be able to update my current hardware to get the latest features.

Fake Namerton
Fake Namerton
1 year ago

These things should have Qi wireless charging as well as fast charging by now. Glad to see replaceable chip. Wouldn’t buy a Garmin though. Their Software is terrible.

Johannes Nilsen
11 months ago
Reply to  Fake Namerton

what in particular is terrible? I haven’t tried it.

11 months ago

My datafield looks nice on the 840, but looks nicer on the 1040, less cluttered. https://apps.garmin.com/en-US/apps/b388aca6-91a8-4453-a35a-daf6437f170c

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