Garmin Edge 530 vs. Edge 540 (Solar): Which One to Buy?

Garmin Edge 530 vs. Edge 540 Solar: Me holding Garmin Edge 530 on the left side, and Edge 540 Solar on the right side.

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This is my comparison of Garmin Edge 530 vs. Edge 540 (Solar), which I have been using for a few weeks now. Garmin released the Edge 540 and Edge 540 Solar on the 11th of April, 2023.

In this article, you will learn about their differences, and I will also try to help you decide if you should upgrade.


The main difference between Garmin Edge 530 and 540 is that the 540 has a new user interface, USB-C charging port, and is available in Solar option. Additionally, 540 offers the new ClimbPro, Real-Time Stamina, Power Guide, and more. However, the Edge 540 is more expensive than the 530.

I don’t recommend upgrading to the 540 because the Edge 840 (Solar) offers buttons and a touchscreen display, making it much easier to use. Therefore, I believe the Edge 840 is the best option. If you have a tight budget, try to find a slightly used 530 with decent battery life.

Edge 530 vs. Edge 540: The Basics

Here is the summary of the main features and differences between Garmin Edge 530 vs. Edge 540 (Solar).

FeatureGarmin Edge 530Garmin Edge 540 (Solar)
Screen size2.6″2.6″
Claimed battery life
Real battery life¹
20 hours
16.25 hours²
26 hours (32 hours)
27.50 hours³ (Edge 540 Solar)
Dimensions50×82×20 mm
1.9×3.2×0.8 in
58×85×20 mm
2.3×3.4×0.8 in
Weight76g80g (85g)
Storage16 GB32 GB
Start-up time∼17s∼13s
Mounts in the boxOut front mount
Stem mount
Out front mount
Stem mount
ButtonsEasy to pressEasy to press
Smart navigation (rerouting)YesYes
Multi-band GNSSNoYes
ConnectivityANT+, Bluetooth, Wi-FiANT+, Bluetooth, Wi-Fi
Crash/incident detectionYesYes
More infoGarmin Edge 530 ReviewEdge 540 review
BuyCheck Price
Check Price (
Check Price
Check Price (
Check Price (Solar)
Check Price (
This table compares the main features of the Garmin Edge 530 vs. 540 (Solar).
¹Based on my unscientific testing - multiple rides with multiple connected sensors (HR, power meter, radar), and navigation turned on during about 30% of rides. Auto brightness on.
²Almost 2-year-old device.
³Most of the rides took place under cloudy skies or in weak sunshine.

Edge 530 vs. Edge 540: What’s New?

Here are the most important upgrades of the Edge 540 compared to the Edge 530:

  • Edge 540 is available in the Solar option
  • Edge 540 has Increased battery life from 20 to 26 hours (compared to the Edge 530 and 830)
  • New ClimbPro (doesn’t require having a preplanned route)
  • Revamped user interface (the same one known from Edge 1040)
  • Power Guide and Real-Time Stamina features
  • Simplified setup/pairing process
  • More accurate GPS (Multi-band GNSS)
  • Increased price
  • And many more

Edge 530 vs. Edge 540: What’s the Same?

Both bike computers have the same:

  • box contents (mounts, tether, charging cable, documentation)
  • display size and resolution
  • water resistance (IPX7) 
  • maps
  • sensors
  • connectivity
  • safety features

They do everything you expect from a quality bike computer. These features include turn-by-turn navigation, Strava live segments, auto-sync with 3rd party apps, compatibility with 3rd party sensors, etc.

Edge 530 and 540 are also available in bundles that include additional sensors.

Edge 530 vs. Edge 540: Features Comparison

Below, I compare the essential features of Edge 530 and 540. 

Ease of Setup

Garmin simplified the setup process on the Edge 540 (and 840). You still have to pair it with the Garmin Connect smartphone app, go through the setup guide, and pair it with sensors.

But now, you can scan a QR code (as on Wahoo ELEMNT computers), and the 540 can also import your settings from the Garmin Connect cloud. 

NEW Garmin EDGE 540/840 Series GPS: What's New // Hands-On // Road Tested

After that, you can use your smartphone app to set up the data fields and other details, which is likely faster than on the device since it doesn’t have a touchscreen display.

Winner: Edge 540


The Edge 530 and 540 have the same display size (2.6″), similar to the Wahoo ELEMNT ROAM’s 2.7-inch display.

Garmin Edge 530 review: Me holding the Garmin Edge 530, showing the data page.
Garmin Edge 530 display
Garmin Edge 540 Solar review: Me holding the Garmin Edge 540 Solar showing its display.
Garmin Edge 540 Solar review

When comparing the screens of the Garmin Edge 530 vs. Edge 540, their resolution, number of colors, and data fields they can display are the same.

However, it’s important to note that the Edge 540 Solar’s display is slightly dimmer than the non-solar version. Their readability is similarly good, though.

Winner: It’s a draw

Control & User Friendliness

The 540 is easier to control, thanks to the revamped user interface we know from the Edge 1040. However, it’s clear it has been designed for touchscreen devices. Controlling it with buttons is sometimes pretty awkward.

Me holding the Garmin Edge 540 Solar and 840 showing their display.
Edge 540 Solar vs. Edge 840

Setting up the device using a smartphone app is great. However, the Garmin Connect app is less user-friendly than the Wahoo ELEMNT app. It’s mainly because of the many features Edge devices offer.

One of the major differences, however, is that the 840 has the same physical buttons as the 540, in addition to the touchscreen, and the price of the 540 Solar and 840 is the same. Therefore, I believe the Edge 840 is a much better choice than the 540 (Solar).

Read this comparison of the Edge 540 vs. 840 for more info.

Winner: Edge 540

Battery Life

Edge 530 has a claimed battery life of 20 hours, while the 540 has 26 hours.

The Edge 540 Solar pushes it to 32 hours in ideal conditions because the solar panel can add up to 25 minutes per hour of riding.

The battery life increase is pretty disappointing, and the smaller solar panel also doesn’t give the head unit as much juice as the Edge 1040 Solar, which adds up to 42 minutes.

I managed to get around 27 and a half hours of battery life from the Edge 540 Solar. However, it’s worth mentioning that most of my rides took place in cloudy weather, so the solar charging was limited.

A screenshot of the Edge 540 Solar charge during one of my trips in Italian Dolomites.
Garmin Edge 540 Solar charge – during my Passo Fedaia trip (see route)

Considering these factors, I think you can skip the Solar option. If you do ultra-endurance events, you will probably buy the Edge 1040 Solar anyway.

Winner: Edge 540

TIP: You might be interested in this comparison of Edge 830 vs. Edge 840 (Solar).

Maps & Navigation

Edge 530 and 540 offer the same navigation features. These include turn-by-turn directions, recalculating routes, courses, popularity heatmap, etc.

Garmin Edge 540 navigation page.
Navigation | Source:

It’s a shame that you must connect to a PC (Mac) to update maps. An update via WiFi is not possible. Furthermore, the storage space remains to be 16 GB. 32 GB would be more appropriate.

Another feature worth mentioning is the better GPS accuracy on the Edge 540 thanks to the multi-band GNSS.

Winner: Edge 540


Garmin Edge bike computers offer the following features I want to highlight:

  • ClimbPro is better on the Edge 540 because it doesn’t require having a pre-planned route, and it shows more detailed gradients. However, the ClimbPro data page offers limited customizability.
  • Edge 540 also has new features like Real-Time Stamina and Power Guide.
  • Both these bike computers have features like MTB Dynamics and Incident/crash detection.
Garmin Edge 540 Solar, Hammerhead Karoo 2, Wahoo ELEMNT Bolt v2 and Garmin Edge 840 on my handlebar with the ClimbPro, Climber, or Summit features open.
ClimbPro vs. Climber vs. Summit

Winner: Edge 540

Total score: Garmin Edge 530 (0) | Garmin Edge 540 (5) | It’s a draw (1)

My Verdict

The clear winner between the Garmin Edge 530 and 540 is the Edge 540, which isn’t surprising. The question is whether the difference is worth the extra $100, as the Edge 530 is currently discounted to $249 (and you can buy a second-hand one for around $149).

If I decided solely on price, I would choose the discounted Edge 530. However, the Edge 540 offers new features that may interest you.

It ultimately depends on your budget, riding style, and whether you will make use of these features, particularly the Power Guide and Real-Time Stamina. Personally, I value accurate GPS (multi-band GNSS), a USB-C port, and longer battery life more than those features.

Due to the smaller solar panel, I don’t believe the Edge 540 is worth it because it’s less effective than the Edge 1040 Solar.

I hope this article has helped you. Let me know in the comments what you think.

Edge 530 vs. Edge 540 FAQ

4 thoughts on “Garmin Edge 530 vs. Edge 540 (Solar): Which One to Buy?”

    1. Profile picture of Petr Minarik - the founder of

      Hi, Guillermo,
      What issues exactly? I’m working on a review of the 540, but other than the fact that the system was designed for touchscreen devices, I haven’t noticed any problems.
      – Petr

  1. Profile picture of Petr Minarik - the founder of

    Thx for the useful info.

    I am studying this because my 7-year-old Edge 520 was recently broken – 1 rubber button totally was torn off and another one started to fall off. There is an option of buying a replacement case from Ali-express but it would take long and some trouble. It would be a good time to consider an upgrade 🙂

    One key difference that makes me consider 540 is the new button design. I feel safer for another 7 years, as 530 seems to have the same design as 520.

    1. Profile picture of Petr Minarik - the founder of

      I’m glad it helped you 🙂
      I don’t know how much the button design differs in terms of durability, but I recommend the E840 over the E540 for ease of use (you can combine buttons + touchscreen).
      – Petr

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