Bryton is one of many contenders in sport’s incredibly crowded GPS bike computer market. Its Rider 420 is available as a standalone 420E unit (£104.99) or the combo Rider 420T that I have here, which comes with a heart-rate monitor and cadence sensor.
And, provided you’re not looking for mapping, its whopping 77 functions and impressive IPX7 rating – which means it can be submerged in a metre of water for 30 minutes – should cover the needs of just about every cyclist.
Fitting the Rider 420 to your bike is a doddle. The head unit, which measures 49.9×83.9×16.9mm, comes with the familiar twist-mount that will fit on either the stem or bar, and numerous O-rings of various sizes, which keep the head unit surprisingly stable.
Most of us will use an out-front mount, and while Bryton’s fitting is similar to Garmin’s you won’t be surprised to hear they’re not compatible.
The heart-rate monitor chest strap is a comfortable fabric affair with a clip-on battery unit and, like the cadence sensor, it’s a breeze to sync with the head unit.
You can use the 420 out of the box without syncing it to your phone, which shows it’s reasonably intuitive, but for maximum usability you need to link it with the BrytonSport app.
This lets you customise the comprehensive range of functions, and although the 420 doesn’t have any mapping capability, you can upload GPX files to it for turn-by-turn navigation, which works pretty well.
The 420’s 77 functions cover all the familiar features: speed, distance, heart rate, riding time – the maximums and averages of all these – power (if you have a power meter), gradient, altitude, metres climbed, cadence, calories burned… you get the picture.
These are displayed on a large, easy-to-read screen that can display up to eight fields at once, spread over up to five scrollable screens. I ran the 420 with seven fields, for the extra legibility offered by the 18mm-high speed reading.
The lower-left corner button scrolls through the pages while the lower right corner button controls laps.
One of the 420’s most impressive functions is its battery life, which is a claimed 35 hours after a four-hour charge. My experience suggests this is pretty accurate, and it beats my Garmin 520 Plus hands down.
I was less enamoured with the location of the small on/off switch underneath, but that’s a pretty minor quibble on Bryton’s well-considered and competitively priced GPS.