Magene L508 Bike Radar vs. Garmin Varia RVR315: A Rear Radar Showdown

As an avid cyclist, I always make safety my top priority. One crucial piece of equipment that has made a significant difference in my cycling experience is the rear radar. These devices alert riders of approaching vehicles, making rides more relaxing and secure. Today, I will compare the Magene L508 Bike Radar with the Garmin Varia RVR315, which I used last year. Both radars have their strengths and weaknesses, and I’m excited to share my insights on them.

The Importance of Rear Radars

Using a rear radar while cycling on the road is invaluable. Not only does it warn you of approaching vehicles, but it also helps alleviate the constant stress of checking your blind spots. With this added layer of safety, you can focus on enjoying the ride while the radar keeps you informed.

With my setup the radar pairs with my Hammerhead Karoo 2 bike computer and gives me both an audio and visual alert. You can also pair them with a phone or many other smart devices.

Magene L508 Bike Radar: A Worthy Competitor

After using the Garmin Varia RVR315 for a year, I recently took the Magene L508 Bike Radar for a test ride. The main difference between the two is the integrated light in the Magene. Garmin offers a radar with a light but it’s almost double the price.

I was pleasantly surprised by its accuracy; there was only one false alarm, which occurred while riding parallel to an expressway. Aside from that minor hiccup, the radar performed flawlessly.

One notable feature of the Magene L508 is the level of customization available for its light. The device offers multiple modes, brightness levels, and a brake-sensing function, which automatically increases light intensity when you brake. This feature sets it apart from the Garmin, which lacks this brake-sensing capability.

Another advantage of the Magene L508 is its USB-C charging port. In contrast, the Garmin still uses the older Micro USB standard. The USB-C charger allows for faster charging and is more compatible with modern devices, making it a convenient choice.

Garmin Varia RVR315: The Tried-and-True Radar

While the Garmin Varia RVR315 may lack some of the innovative features of the Magene L508, it’s still a reliable rear radar. I used it for a year, and it never let me down. Its accuracy and consistency made me feel more secure and relaxed on my rides.


The Magene L508 Bike Radar is an excellent alternative to the Garmin Varia RVR315. With its customization options, integrated light, brake-sensing feature, and USB-C charging port, it offers a few advantages over the Garmin model. However, the Garmin Varia RVR315 remains a solid option for those who value tried-and-true reliability.

Regardless of which rear radar you choose, the important thing is to use one. These devices provide a heightened sense of security and make for a more enjoyable cycling experience. Happy and safe riding!

Magene L508 available on Amazon

Garmin Varia RVR315 available at REI

One thought on “Magene L508 Bike Radar vs. Garmin Varia RVR315: A Rear Radar Showdown

  1. I think something is up with the magene utility used to setup the light. None of the customization options work anymore, seems like it’s been abandoned for a while which I am surprised about.

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