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Author Topic: GPS unit suggestions  (Read 4329 times)

astainback

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GPS unit suggestions
« on: January 25, 2010, 09:41:24 PM »
I own the Garmin GPSMAp60csx and love it!
I have been thinking about getting one for the car.
Which do you guys recommend?
I would like to have the track feature on it.  I really enjoy using/playing with the tracks from my 60csx. 
I have been reading a lot, and it seems that the 500 is the way to go, but I am not sure.
I can't tell the difference in the 500 and the 550.  It looks like it is the maps that are loaded on it.

Any suggestions will be appreciated.
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-Oz-

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Re: GPS unit suggestions
« Reply #1 on: January 26, 2010, 02:03:46 PM »
I have a 255W and 265WT and if I remember correctly they both do tracking and work great.

I think the 500 series is a more "ruggedized" auto unit so if you're not going to be taking it outside very often probably not a bad idea to just find another unit that meets your needs and the price point you're looking for (mine have all been under $200 and between mine and my family we probably have 5 or 6 different versions).

My one advice is: Get Wideccreen!  it helps a lot.  Also, the "new" series with speed limits that display are quite useful.  I like my wife's over mine because of the speed limits (and hotfix).  Also, get TTS (text to speech) so it reads road names; I never had a problem but my wife missed plenty of turns because she went to look at the screen for the road name and drove right on by.

The difference is likely that the 550 has Alaska and Hawaii on it while the 500 just has the lower 48 states.
Dan Blomberg
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GPS Units: Garmin Dakota 20, Garmin GPSMap 60csx, Nuvi 255W, Nuvi 250W, ForeRunner 110, Fenix 2, Tactix Bravo, Foretrex 401
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astainback

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Re: GPS unit suggestions
« Reply #2 on: January 26, 2010, 02:47:16 PM »
It's weird about the 500, it costs more.  ha
I don't plan on visiting Hawaii or Alaska.. although I would really like to.

The 205 WS is only 90 bucks.
What are some of the features that I need to look out for?  I mean, obviously, the 205 does what I need, but do the more expensive ones come with free map updates?
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Boyd

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Re: GPS unit suggestions
« Reply #3 on: January 26, 2010, 02:52:12 PM »
The newest series (1200/1300/1400/1600) are not well suited to topo maps. They really mangle the display in a number of ways. Contour lines are big and fat - wider than the roads. And wetland areas are rendered as though they were lakes instead of the swamp texture on other models. They also show very few road names.

These problems can be overcome by building your own custom types if you're making your own maps, but otherwise they are not so great for topo maps. Caveat Emptor. Other Nuvi models seem to be fine with topo maps, but you don't have as much control over their appearance as you would on a handheld.

I believe the Nuvi 500 has both topo and city navigator maps while the Nuvi 550 only has city navigator.

All of the current nuvi models record tracklog. In fact, they are always recording track and you can't turn it off. You can hide it and clear it, but not turn it off. And also realize that it's a one-way proposition on the nuvi. You can copy the tracklog from the nuvi to your computer, but you can't load a tracklog from the computer to the nuvi. So if you have tracks that you've saved from your 60csx, there is no way to send them to the Nuvi and have them displayed. The only workaround would be to make a transparent map from the tracklog, but that's kind of a hassle.

Boyd

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Re: GPS unit suggestions
« Reply #4 on: January 26, 2010, 02:54:12 PM »
It's weird about the 500, it costs more.

As mentioned above, that's because it has both Topo and City Navigator.

Free map updates are a pretty new concept for Garmin, but I have recently seen them bundled at some vendors. You will need to shop around.

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Re: GPS unit suggestions
« Reply #5 on: January 26, 2010, 02:57:54 PM »
I think there are a couple units out there with free map updates; and with Garmin updating 4 times a year now it may be worth it.

You can get map updates for the unit from Garmin at anytime as well (lifetime ones) for under $100.

The only issue I see with the 205W is it will say Turn right in 500ft rather than "Turn right on elm st in 500ft".

You can get a 255W for under $150 by just browsing Froogle or PriceGrabber (under $140 at Amazon).

Side note: I've had a few refurbished GPS units from Garmin and never had a problem.  They will let you update to the latest map for free as well (once).
Dan Blomberg
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Re: GPS unit suggestions
« Reply #6 on: January 26, 2010, 02:59:23 PM »
As Boyd is saying I guess it comes down to what are you going to use the nuvi for?
Dan Blomberg
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GPS Units: Garmin Dakota 20, Garmin GPSMap 60csx, Nuvi 255W, Nuvi 250W, ForeRunner 110, Fenix 2, Tactix Bravo, Foretrex 401
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astainback

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Re: GPS unit suggestions
« Reply #7 on: January 26, 2010, 03:02:34 PM »
for 40 bucks, I think I could live without the street name.  I am thinking about getting the 205w though.  Thanks for all the help!!

Oh, and is there a unit that has a better mount setup over another?

Thanks,
Adrian
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Boyd

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Re: GPS unit suggestions
« Reply #8 on: January 26, 2010, 03:05:43 PM »
All Nuvi's use the same ball mount and suction cup. Some models (705, 805 and 5000 series) have an active cradle with contact fingers that engage the edge of the GPS. You can pop the Nuvi out without unplugging anything, which is pretty slick.

But if you are trying to prevent theft, you will probably want to remove the whole mount anyway so it may not really be that big of an advantage.

alpine

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Re: GPS unit suggestions
« Reply #9 on: January 27, 2010, 05:16:28 PM »
The 200 series will not accept routes from MapSource. The 7X5 series will factor in time zones on calculating arrival times, and current time.