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Messages - JackErbes

GPSr Units / Re: 12-volt adaptor for the 60CSx
June 21, 2010, 04:04:21 PM
The USB adapters provide 5V (a 500 mAh if they meet specs) and that is converted to the lower (3.5V nominal) voltage that the 60/76 Cx/CSx use internally. 

The power pins in the DC power/RS-232 Serial connector can take an input voltage of up to 36V DC.  The higher input  voltages on the DC power connector allow easy connection on trucks, planes, boats, and other places where 24V power is common and even up to 36V can be found occasionally.     

The older Garmin handhelds, and many of the older units in general, have a very robust and flexible DC power input scheme.  But you do have to be careful as a few of the older and many of the newer models have an external DC-DC inverter to drop the voltage and will only work with those.  The Zumo, Quest, and Quest II are a few of the older ones that have to have an externally regulated DC input voltage (usually 5V nominal).   I can't speak for anything newer than the zumo and 76Cx. 

I have heard that voltages as low as 9V will work on the DC input pins on the 60/76 models but I have not tested that on my 76Cx.  The are many other Garmin handhelds and dash mounted units that will use the up to 36V DC input and many older models that would use 9-35V inputs.

The voltages are spelled out better in the specifications in the User's Manual than they are in most of the online descriptions and advertising (which sort of imply that there is a 12V limit on the DC power).

The only issue I have with using the USB for power is the USB plug sticking straight out the back can make it a little awkward to use in some places and it may also create of point of fragility the way it sticks out.  I'm not sure how much stress that mini USB socket will stand.   

I added a Motorola SKN6182A mini-USB Right Angle adapter to the end of the USB cable I use in the car to keep the plug from sticking straight out.  I put that on the cable and put adhesive heat shrink tube over it to make it a more or less permanent part of the cable.  You can find the adapters at many cellular shops.