Cateye's Adventure computer occupies the middle ground between basic units and the more involved, data-downloadable computers at the high end. For your hundred quid you get a well made, easy-to use bit of kit that adds a few useful features to the standard set.
Setting up the Adventure is a pretty simple process, just follow the step-by-step instructions in the leaflet and you're up and running in about five minutes. The one thing to note is that the Click-Tec™ Plus button – you can basically press any part of the face – is in reality a small switch on the rear that only becomes easy to use once the unit is mounted, so you'll need a bit of dexterity. The mount itself is one of Cateye's plastic Jubilee clip affairs that you can attach to your bars or stem, and it's the usual zipties and thumbscrew for the sensor and magnet. The sensor needs to be paired with the head unit, which takes about a minute and ensures trouble-free communication.
Once everything's in place the Adventure, which is small and classy-looking, is great to use. Mine has performed flawlessly throughout testing and has been unfazed by sportive traffic, overhead wires and LED flashers. The screen is split into three rows. At the top there's your speed, writ large, and underneath that there's a dot matrix row that concerns itself with altitude and gradient. At the bottom are all the other functions: trip distance, average and max speeds, odometer, clock, elapsed time and so forth. Their indicators are a bit small and hard to read until you get to know the sequence, but it's not a big deal. Scrolling through the functions and resetting the computer is a piece of cake thanks to the fact that you just click anywhere on the face; there's a small secondary button that's used for accessing some data. Useful features that you don't often find include a countdown distance timer and the ability to toggle auto-stop on the clocks, which is handy for timed events.
The main draw of the Adventure is its pressure-based altimeter and temperature sensors. I've used a lot of barometric altimeters and most of them are very good; this one is no exception. You need to set your altitude at a known point to get a reference, but after that it's pretty much spot on. Obviously air pressure varies during the day and that will affect the readings, but it's unusual to arrive home to find the altitude more than five metres different than when you started. Gradient updates every few seconds and is accurate to 1% on the climbs whose gradients I've measured.
And is it useful? Yes, or at least I find it so, especially when I'm riding somewhere different. I took the Adventure on the Forest of Dean Classic sportive and it's very handy to be able to look down and get an instant reference of your altitude, there's far fewer shocks along the way. If it seems like you've been climbing for ages and the needle's only just crept above 100m, you know there's going to be more to come. Similarly, you can track your descending and judge from how low you go how hard the next climb will be. On long flat bits that are hard work you can instantly see whether they really are flat or not thanks to the gradient readout. The Adventure gives you a full tally of metres gained and lost, which is a good number to bandy about at the end of a long ride.
Temperature I find less useful – my fingers always tell me how cold I am anyway – but the two seem to be intrinsically linked, you never get one without the other. Anyway, it can be interesting, more so in the winter when it can warn of unexpected ice patches.
If you're spending a hundred quid on a standalone computer you'll want something that provides you with a good range of data and is well made and easy to use. The Adventure scores well on all points, and it's a good all-rounder.
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Make and model: Cateye Adventure Wireless Altimeter computer
Size tested: n/a
Tell us what the product is for, and who it's aimed at. What do the manufacturers say about it? How does that compare to your own feelings about it?
Designed for use on and off-road, the new 14 function, 14 feature Cateye Adventure Wireless is an Altimeter and cycle computer in one. With Cateye’s accurate cycle functions on board, the Adventure Wireless gives additional Current Altitiude, Trip Altiude, Gradient and Total Altitude Gain as well as Temperature. Giving you, the user, an extra dimension to your ride or race readout! The altitude can be set from home for each ride or programmable if you’re starting elsewhere.The Adventure Wireless features digital signal for reduced interference and the new Click-Tec™ Plus button for easy interface.
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
- Sea level altitude
- Ascending Altitude
- Total altitude gain
- Current, average & Maximum speed
- Trip distance
- Trip distance 2
- Countdown distance
- Elapsed time
- Digital wireless system (ID coded)
- Programmable reference altitude, home altitude & total distance
- Dual tire size
- Automatic 2nd bike sensor recognition
- ClickTec Plus™
- New FlexTight™ bracket
- Pace arrow - Auto or manual start/stop
- Low battery indicator (computer & sensor)
- Auto power-saving mode
- Sleep mode
Fits almost any handlebar or stem: 22-31.8mm
Fits almost any fork: 11-55mm
Batteries: CR2032 x 2 (1 each for head unit and sensor)
Front fork speed sensor
Transmission distance up to 70cm - 27 inches
Well made, very simple to fit
Faultless communication between the sensor and head unit. Some of the data headings are a bit fiddly though
Has kept its good looks thus far, bucket test reveals it's well sealed
You're not going to notice a computer, now are you?
Not cheap at a hundred quid but well made and the extra functions are useful
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
Accurate and easy to use
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
Fiddly data headings
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes
Would you consider buying the product? Yes
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes
Age: 37 Height: 190cm Weight: 96kg
I usually ride: whatever I\\\'m testing... My best bike is: Genesis Equilibrium with Ultegra 6700
I've been riding for: 10-20 years I ride: Every day I would class myself as: Experienced
I regularly do the following types of riding: time trialling, cyclo cross, commuting, sportives, general fitness riding, fixed/singlespeed, mtb, Mountain Bike Bog Snorkelling, track
Dave is a founding father of road.cc, having previously worked on Cycling Plus and What Mountain Bike magazines back in the day. He also writes about e-bikes for our sister publication ebiketips. He's won three mountain bike bog snorkelling World Championships, and races at the back of the third cats.