The Pros and Cons of 5 Power Meters

Stages Power

How it Works: Embedded in the arm of the left crank.

Cost: $699 to $899


  • Inexpensive compared to other options.
  • ANT+ and Bluetooth compatible (will work with a Garmin or iPhone).


  • Arguably less accurate than other power meters. Since the sensors are only mounted on one crank arm, the power number is doubled to achieve results. Stages claims to be within two percent of the real power number, but this is unproven.
  • Not compatible with every crank manufacturer.
  • Requires the use of an aluminum crank arm.

More: How Accurate Are Power Meters?

Garmin Vector

How it works: Embedded in the pedals.

Cost: $1,700


  • Easy to transfer from one bike to another (as long as you use the same pedals).
  • Enables you to use any wheel set in conjunction with the unit.
  • Good accuracy.


  • Not ANT+ compatible. Requires the use of a Polar computer that doesn't offer GPS.
  • The unit must be calibrated before every use.
  • Vulnerable to damage during a crash or when clipping in and out of pedals.

More: 11 Reasons to Buy a Power Meter

SRAM Quarq

How it works: Embedded in the spider of the crank.

Cost: $1,795


  • Lightweight and waterproof.
  • Data is accurate (company claims to be within 1.5 percent of real numbers).
  • Battery is easy to replace.
  • ANT+ compatible. Works with most third-party head units.


  • Expensive.
  • Difficult to use on multiple bikes.

More: 5 Reasons to Train With a Power Meter

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