Ok my first ride today, actually first two rides. I accepted the display settings suggested on the application startup and this was a slideshow so the first ride was 300m before exiting to reset the display preferences. The second first ride was a complete circuit of Willunga. Things of note:
Gradient issues: The gradient does not display well on the screen. The same road appearance could be anywhere from slight up, to dead flat, to slight down for any gradient between +10% and -9%. The display does not reflect the gradient at all. Also changes in gradient are far too harsh on the displayed speed compared to the effort changes. Speed could change up to 30km/h up or down before real changes were felt in the effort required. This coupled with the lack of visual gradient change made any effort to maintain speed extremely difficult.
Power: I was using Tax Neo for the trainer but taking Power data from my P1 pedals. The displayed power throughout the entire ride was displaying as 10-20W at least lower in VirtuGo than was displayed on the Garmin headunit for the same power source. In other comparisons (basically Zwift) these have always been very close, never a consistent largish gap like this ride.
Leaderboards: This was most noticeable on the Willunga climb, but the slowest displayed time for the segment was 25s, giving me a constant reminder of how slow I climbed those final k’s of the circuit. The leaderboard after the segment did appear to display well, at least it had times closer to my slow climb displayed Not the same issue for the two sprint segments as they are much shorter segments. Also leading in to the second sprint I had “sprint segment starts in 8m” over the screen until I passed the 100m to go banner for the sprint.
General graphics: I have been using the same computer I used for this ride for Zwift for well over 12 months (don’t remember how long) and the graphics have always been smooth. I can do group rides with over 500 participants and not have the poor graphics performance I had on this ride. The settings I used were comparable for the resolution and there was little to no detail displayed. The draw distance was barely reaching mid distance for road features. The screen had the constant sky image and the very basic terrain and grey strip for road. There was little to no road furniture or roadside features for the first lap of the course. I did feel like there was a little more detail on the second (part) lap. I did find the OSD to be pretty good but bordering on a touch small. I did like to overall circuit profile, but a zoomed scrolling section with the upcoming terrain would be useful.
In general: I actually think this platform shows great promise. I have been riding on Zwift since the late beta stage. I think this platform has the skeleton of a good competitor once it gets a little more mature and some of the physics gets sorted better. I think the mismatch I mentioned earlier with the gradient visually and the speed and effort changes is the biggest issue. I think there needs to be a slight exaggeration of the terrain visually to make up for the lack of other cues. It may be that this exaggerated visual cue might make everything else gel together better. The other issues I raised are mostly cosmetic or minor tweaks.
Thanks for allowing me to join the beta community!