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Cateye Velo 7 Review

Ultra basic cycling computer with wired sensors
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Cateye Velo 7 Review (Cateye Velo  7)
Cateye Velo 7
Credit: Cateye
Price:  $28 List
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Manufacturer:   Cateye
By Curtis Smith ⋅ Senior Review Editor  ⋅  Dec 26, 2016
51
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#14 of 14
  • Ease of Use - 30% 6.0
  • Ease of Setup - 20% 5.0
  • Features - 20% 3.0
  • Versatility - 20% 5.0
  • Water Resistance - 10% 7.0

Our Verdict

The Cateye Velo 7 is a basic cycling computer that provides speed, distance, and time data points. It uses a wired speed sensor that attaches to the front fork and a small spoke magnet to record speed. Nothing fancy, just the basics, but it gets the job done and can be purchased for less than the price of mounting brackets for other computers.
REASONS TO BUY
Inexpensive
Easy to use
REASONS TO AVOID
Difficult setup
Not versatile
No GPS
No ANT+
Wired sensor

Compare to Similar Products

 
cateye velo 7
This Product
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Awards  Top Pick Award Best Buy Award Best Buy Award  
Price $28 List
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$60 List$50 List
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Overall Score Sort Icon
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Bottom Line Ultra basic cycling computer with wired sensorsBest in class battery life, offline maps and navigation, and great smartphone integration are just a few of the things we loved about this computerYou're trading user experience for price against unrefined performanceThe ideal computer to get your basic riding data without fussing over the noisePromising price, but disappointing due to bad app and buttons that make it a pain to use
Rating Categories Cateye Velo 7 Lezyne Mega XL GPS Bryton Rider 420 CatEye Quick COOSPO BC107 GPS
Ease of Use (30%)
6.0
7.0
7.0
7.0
5.0
Ease of Setup (20%)
5.0
9.0
7.0
8.0
7.0
Features (20%)
3.0
7.0
6.0
4.0
5.0
Versatility (20%)
5.0
8.0
8.0
5.0
6.0
Water Resistance (10%)
7.0
10.0
10.0
7.0
10.0
Specs Cateye Velo 7 Lezyne Mega XL GPS Bryton Rider 420 CatEye Quick COOSPO BC107 GPS
GPS enabled No GPS, Glonass GPS, Glonass, BDS, Galileo, QZSS No GPS, BEDOU
Cadence Sensor No ANT+ or Bluetooth Smart ANT+ or Bluetooth No ANT+
Heart Rate Monitor No ANT+ or Bluetooth Smart ANT+ or Bluetooth No ANT+
Power Meter No ANT+ or Bluetooth Smart ANT+ No ANT+
Smart Trainer No No, but does have "Stationary Mode" ANT+FE-C No No
WiFi No No No No No
Weight 29g 82g 67g 18g 64g
Dimensions 1.5" x 2.1" x 0.75" 2.3" x 3.1" x 1.05" 2" x 3.3" x 0.86" 3.7" x 2.1" x 1.4" 3.1" x 2.1" x 0.8"
Display Size 0.9" x 1.2" 1.4" x 2.3" 2.3" 1.25" x 1.25" 2.3"
Battery Type CR2032 Re-chargable lithium ion Lithium polymer CR2032-Sensor, CR1616-Display Re-chargable lithium ion
Battery Life 1+ years 48 hours Up to 35 hours (claimed) 1+ years 28 hours with GPS (claimed)
Touchscreen? No Yes No No No
Phone App None Lezyne Ally V2 Bryton Active App None CoospoRide
Accessory Interface ANT+, BTLE, BT. Wired Bluetooth Smart, ANT+ Bluetooth, ANT+ Proprietary Analog Wireless ANT+
Strava Segments No Yes No No No
Text, Email, Call notifications No Yes Yes No No
Navigation No Yes Yes No No

Our Analysis and Test Results

This contender is a basic cycling computer that uses a wired sensor. It stands out from other computers in our test with its super low price tag. If you are looking for an entry-level cycling computer for your road bike, this one will get the job done and not break the bank.

Performance Comparison


cateye velo 7 - the wired velo 7 mounted on the handlebars for testing.
The wired Velo 7 mounted on the handlebars for testing.
Credit: Curtis Smith

Ease of Use and Interface


The Velo 7 is easy to use. It automatically turns on when movement is detected and begins recording ride data. It will enter power saving mode after it sits for a full ten minutes. A single tactile button located on the front of the computer allows you to cycle through time, distance, average speed, maximum speed, and odometer. Your current speed is always displayed on the top portion of the screen, so at any given time you have two different data points displayed on the screen. The screen is easy to read, but not as good as other high-end models. There is no screen contrast setting options. Overall, the interface is simple and easy to learn.

cateye velo 7 - the cateye velo 7 and its included parts right out of the box.
The Cateye Velo 7 and its included parts right out of the box.
Credit: Curtis Smith

Ease of Setup


The Velo 7 is more difficult to set-up than other computers we tested such as the wireless Cateye Strada Slim. This is primarily due to its use of a wired sensor rather than a wireless sensor. The sensor must be attached to the fork leg using zip ties, and then the wire is wrapped around the fork leg and up the front brake cable. The mounting base is then attached to the handlebars using zip ties.

A spoke magnet must then be attached to a spoke on the front wheel with a clearance of 5mm between it and the sensor. Once the computer is attached, you must go through the basic setup using small buttons on the back of the computer. A wheel size chart is included in the instructions so you can get an accurate wheel and tire circumference. This contender is only capable of storing one wheel size, so if it is moved to a bike with different sized wheels, you will have to reset the wheel size.

cateye velo 7 - wrapping the sensor wire up the front fork. this makes installation...
Wrapping the sensor wire up the front fork. This makes installation more tedious than with wireless bike computers like the Cateye Strada Slim.
Credit: Curtis Smith

Features


This is a basic computer. Data fields include speed, time, distance, average speed, max speed, and odometer. It also has a small indicator arrow on the upper left portion of the screen that points up if your current speed is higher than the ride average, and down if your speed is lower than the ride average. It keeps track of your overall mileage, but does not store individual ride data.

Water Resistance


Cateye claims that the Velo 7 is water resistant, but does not reference any particular standard. We did have some moisture get into the battery compartment after transporting it on a vehicle roof rack in a rainstorm. After letting the battery compartment dry out, we had no issues with the computer.

Versatility


This contender is not versatile. It is designed to be used on a road bike. Due to the sensor design, it is difficult to achieve the required 5mm spacing between the sensor and the spoke magnet on mountain bike or cyclocross frames. Transferring the computer between bikes requires that you cut several zip ties and unwrap the sensor wire from the front brake line and fork. Definitely not something you will want to be doing on a regular basis. Also, you cannot upload your data from this computer to any third party data tracking services like Strava.

Value


A very basic computer that is a good buy for less than almost any other bike computer. If you have a few bucks to spare we recommend checking out one of the wireless competitors.

Conclusion


The Cateye Velo 7 is a wired cycling computer that provides basic data. It is affordable and a good option for the casual cyclist who is just getting into the sport.

Other Versions


The Cateye Quick, a wireless version that is the winner of our Best Buy for the Casual Cyclist Award.

Curtis Smith