Check out these five new models that are some of the best options available and cost under $1,000.
Watteam Powerbeat$499 1 of 6
To be released later in 2015, the new Powerbeat from Watteam uses crank sensors to provide data from right and left pedal strokes. Unlike a lot of other power meters, its compatibility is an exciting feature. You can use it on any type of crank, it's easy to switch from bike to bike, and it works with almost any head unit--including your smartphone.
The company also claims the data is accurate down to the millisecond. At a price point of just $499, this design could be a game changer.
Pioneer Dual Leg$999 2 of 6
The design of the Pioneer power meter is a huge draw for us. Its lightweight and provides data for both the right and left cranks that's extremely accurate. On the downside, it's only compatible with Dura Ace FC-9000 or Ultegra FC-6800 11-speed cranks, and you must also send it to Pioneer for professional installation--which means switching the unit from bike to bike isn't realistic.
If you do use a Shimano Dura Ace or Ultegra drivetrain and only need data for one bike, this is one of the best power meters you'll find under $1,000.
RPM2 Cycling System Footbeds$599 3 of 6
RPM2 was clearly thinking outside the box when they designed the Cycling system footbeds. While we can't vouch for the accuracy, the design monitors pressure and range of motion to display data for the right leg, left leg and collective power. And because it's inserted into the shoe and not attached to the bike, you'll get data on any bike you ride. The footbeds will need to be removed and charged, and data is only displayed on your smartphone and not other ANT+ GPS devices.
Powertap Chainring$699 4 of 6
Compatible with most Shimano, FSA and SRAM drivetrains, this design from Powertap uses special chainrings to deliver right and left leg data. While this means you won't be able to use your existing chainrings, it is compatible with most alloy and carbon cranks--so it won't likely require a separate purchase. It isn't yet compatible with Campagnolo drivetrains, unfortunately, and though you can switch it from bike to bike, you'll have to remove the entire crank system to do so.
Garmin Vector 2S$899.99 5 of 6
We really like the design and price point of the Vector 2S, though it does only provide single-leg data. Since it's likely the output from each leg isn't exactly the same, the accuracy is the main issue here. You can upgrade to a dual-sensing system, but that'll add a few hundred to the price point. Live data does upload instantly to Garmin devices, and the setup is really simple.
The pedal design is also one of the easiest power meters to switch from bike to bike, and it's also compatible with nearly every drivetrain on the market.