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 Post subject: Which GPS unit and why....?
PostPosted: Fri Nov 19, 2010 10:40 am 
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Location: Madison, WI
I'm looking at new GPS units, potentially one that is a good vehicle one. Then another one that is really good for caching, hiking, canoeing in the Boundary Waters, etc. I've done a quite a bit of homework (and used to have a Garmin Nuvii in the JEEP). I didn't like trying to use the Nuvii for Caching, and from what I've heard, using a handheld in your vehicle produces mixed results.

So IS there a handheld you would recommend or that you use that could do everything? Do you have one of each? What would you recommend?

I do a LOT of driving and so a great vehicle one will be a must, but then I'm debating on how to integrate the other things I want to use one for.. If I can get one to do it all, I'm going to get both, just focusing on the greatest need first (vehicle).


Also, who uses a laptop with mapping software, which one, why do you like it, and what would you recommend? Contemplating going the laptop/ handheld route if there is the right software combination to make it function in both capacities like I want.


I appreciate all your thoughts in advance!

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"The power of imagination makes us infinite" - John Muir
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Toy: 1961 Ford Fairlane http://www.cardomain.com/ride/3182277
Current Mods: Surco Safari Rack, K&N Filter, Curt Hitch, VR3 HU, Optima Yellow, Frankie II Prem & JBA's Gen 4.5 UCAs, Skid Row t-case skid, and more!
Coming soon:???


Last edited by jmichaelsjeep on Fri Nov 19, 2010 11:04 am, edited 2 times in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Which GPS unit and why....?
PostPosted: Fri Nov 19, 2010 10:55 am 
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just don't get a TomTom!! ha.

here's why.. i bought one 2 weeks before i flew to florida to pick up our new car, tested it out a few times around town and on the way to the airport to get used to it... 2 days later when we pick up the car to drive home... it's busted and doesn't work!!! had to go to best buy and buy another one to get home!!! ha. now it works when it wants. i keep it in the glove box as a backup that MIGHT work. otherwise, i have built-in Nav in the Clarion headunit in the Mercedes, and looking to get a similar clarion monitor/nav for the Jeep over winter. not at many POI's, but for general use and finding a location, it has been pretty good for us, and no need for goofy cords hanging on the dash/windshield.


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 Post subject: Re: Which GPS unit and why....?
PostPosted: Fri Nov 19, 2010 11:09 am 
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Thanks,

We have a built in one in our Camry and overall like it, we have to get the map update for it though. I don't mind the cords, and since I switch between work vehicles, rental vehicles, and my own, a portable affords me the luxury of taking it anywhere (including into a vehicle we might rent if we fly somewhere).

Interesting on the TomTom... I'd return it, it probably is faulty. My sister has a TomTom and swears it's better than a Garmin. I think it is kind of like the Apple vs. windows/PC discussion, people are generally on one side or the other, not many that want to use either :) I liked my Garmin a lot, just didn't do some of the other things I want to do very well.

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"The power of imagination makes us infinite" - John Muir
DD Ride03 Limited KJ
Toy: 1961 Ford Fairlane http://www.cardomain.com/ride/3182277
Current Mods: Surco Safari Rack, K&N Filter, Curt Hitch, VR3 HU, Optima Yellow, Frankie II Prem & JBA's Gen 4.5 UCAs, Skid Row t-case skid, and more!
Coming soon:???


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 Post subject: Re: Which GPS unit and why....?
PostPosted: Fri Nov 19, 2010 11:35 am 
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i must say though, i have used other (friends) tomtoms, and liked the GUI overall better than the others i've used. and this one is small and compact enough to throw in my pocket when i take the cycle out for a ride and get lost on country backroads! it does seem to work most of the time now, usually :lol: . and we've had better luck with it since. but yea, i should look into another "reliable" portable one for the reasons you listed... work vehicle, flying/renting car, motorcylce, etc.


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 Post subject: Re: Which GPS unit and why....?
PostPosted: Wed Dec 01, 2010 10:27 am 
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So anyone using the Garmin Nuvi 255w? I saw it on sale here a couple places ($99) and I'm thinking it might have to be my x-mas present to myself if I don't get one from my loved ones. I don't think it is widescreen, but I should survive.

Also, how are people liking using a handheld for driving? I know some do and some don't. Thoughts?

_________________
"The power of imagination makes us infinite" - John Muir
DD Ride03 Limited KJ
Toy: 1961 Ford Fairlane http://www.cardomain.com/ride/3182277
Current Mods: Surco Safari Rack, K&N Filter, Curt Hitch, VR3 HU, Optima Yellow, Frankie II Prem & JBA's Gen 4.5 UCAs, Skid Row t-case skid, and more!
Coming soon:???


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 Post subject: Re: Which GPS unit and why....?
PostPosted: Thu Dec 02, 2010 10:53 pm 
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My wife got for me on Monday for my bday the Garmin Nuuvi 255W. Spent the night loading it with up with updated maps, POI's, vehicle bundles and downloaded trailhead/waypoints for the most popular trails here in Colorado. Been playing with it during the week, so far no issues, but it is my first GPS unit so I have nothing to compare it to. I will go trail running this weekend with it and see how I like it, will give you and update on it afterwards.

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 Post subject: Re: Which GPS unit and why....?
PostPosted: Thu Dec 02, 2010 11:14 pm 
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tom tom sucks.... i have a 205w nuvi and a etrex vista handheld and i have used both for geocaching many times. i take both into the woods

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 Post subject: Re: Which GPS unit and why....?
PostPosted: Fri Dec 03, 2010 12:36 am 
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I use a 255w to get around and to get me to the cache parking and then use a cheap, yellow Garmin etrex to get to the cache. I have over 2600 finds with the Garmin yellow.

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 Post subject: Re: Which GPS unit and why....?
PostPosted: Fri Dec 03, 2010 5:35 pm 
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Thanks all for your feedback.

steve03sport and 501: 1) Do you like your respective garmin vehicle units? 2) Are you happy with your handhelds? I'm thinking of getting the 255w if I don't get it for x-mas and I wasn't real impressed with my buddy's etrex, but maybe I need to spend some more time using it. I don't want to spend the dough for the 450t, but a lot various people I know really are pushing the higher end handhelds like that.

Also, I think I might be getting a netbook from my wife for x-mas, so I might be buying Overland Navigator and using the netbook as supplemental in the JEEP. This might mean I could get by with a more entry level handheld or vehicle model and still get some of the detailed mapping from the netbook.

_________________
"The power of imagination makes us infinite" - John Muir
DD Ride03 Limited KJ
Toy: 1961 Ford Fairlane http://www.cardomain.com/ride/3182277
Current Mods: Surco Safari Rack, K&N Filter, Curt Hitch, VR3 HU, Optima Yellow, Frankie II Prem & JBA's Gen 4.5 UCAs, Skid Row t-case skid, and more!
Coming soon:???


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 Post subject: Re: Which GPS unit and why....?
PostPosted: Sat Dec 04, 2010 9:40 am 
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i love the 2 i have, my etrex is the vista hcx and there great over 600 finds so far

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LTT gen1 CAI
Frankenlift 2 Premium full mopar skids front tow hooks
desert camo seats desert camo wraps
235/75/16 at's on MOABS
Monkey Farts


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 Post subject: Re: Which GPS unit and why....?
PostPosted: Sat Dec 04, 2010 5:20 pm 
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I'm happy with the systems I got, the 255w gets me around the area quick and the Etrex gets me within range of the cache.

No GPS, no matter how expensive, will be spot on for a cache, you always will have to use common sense and look for it. A great example of this is going to a Geo-event and watching the 'closet to the pin' game. The event organizer sets up a point in a field and gives the people the coordinates and a flag, the players goes out and places the flag where their GPSr says the coordinates are.

Every time there will be a huge circle of flags around 30-40' diameter or larger of flags. I think the closest I've ever seen anyone get was within 10' of the coords.

Newer cachers seem to think you go out with a $600± GPSr and when it says your at the coords, you should be able to look down and see the cache... it won't happen though, you got to look for them.

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Blood Clot Red 03 Punisher Edition
245/75-16 Duratracs, Soft 8's, Ironman/clevis Lift, Monroe Sensa-trac rear shocks, JBA 3.5, GTP Hood Louvers, Roof Basket & Light bar, Mudd's Garage Rear Bumper
custom made items: cross rails, grill inserts, cargo shelf, lightbar, pin stripping & rock rails.
L.O.S.T. #DW090501


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 Post subject: Re: Which GPS unit and why....?
PostPosted: Mon Dec 06, 2010 3:59 pm 
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Thanks for the advice!

I was curious about that, whether the more expensive one was good enough to get me "closer", but wasn't sure.. I didn't get to the point of being able to do any caching yet either, so I didn't know what to expect at all.

I might have to borrow my friend's etrex again and do a little caching to see how I like it.

Using your combination, do you end up still having to do paper jotting to put the coordinates into your etrex? I assume you both have the unit that doesn't allow downloading to the device, correct? That was one of the things I was looking for in a unit, was at least to be able to download caches/ POI so that I could select them, then note them as found.

I assume then that you both log it as found as a mental note or paper note, then mark it in your geocaching account?

_________________
"The power of imagination makes us infinite" - John Muir
DD Ride03 Limited KJ
Toy: 1961 Ford Fairlane http://www.cardomain.com/ride/3182277
Current Mods: Surco Safari Rack, K&N Filter, Curt Hitch, VR3 HU, Optima Yellow, Frankie II Prem & JBA's Gen 4.5 UCAs, Skid Row t-case skid, and more!
Coming soon:???


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 Post subject: Re: Which GPS unit and why....?
PostPosted: Tue Dec 07, 2010 2:34 am 
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I can download the waypoints to my computer and then I use GSAK (you can get it from the geocaching site) and then I upload it to my Etrex. I use an IPOD to log my caches as finds and then when I get to a 'hotspot' I can send my caching notes to GC.


There's a geocaching app for the IPOD that's like $8 to $10 but works great, or you can use the Geosphere app, also 8-10 bucks.

Usually I cache with someone, so they hand enter the cache we are going after into the NUVI.

_________________
Blood Clot Red 03 Punisher Edition
245/75-16 Duratracs, Soft 8's, Ironman/clevis Lift, Monroe Sensa-trac rear shocks, JBA 3.5, GTP Hood Louvers, Roof Basket & Light bar, Mudd's Garage Rear Bumper
custom made items: cross rails, grill inserts, cargo shelf, lightbar, pin stripping & rock rails.
L.O.S.T. #DW090501


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 Post subject: Re: Which GPS unit and why....?
PostPosted: Wed Mar 23, 2011 12:56 pm 
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I ended up getting a Garmin 450 for x-mas from my wife, I've used it a few times for caching already and a few times for navigating. I like it A LOT!

In fact, we're planning a family vacation this fall trying to do some caching along the way!

I'm also working on getting some GPS software for my netbook to mount in the JEEP for general navigation travel.

Thanks for the insight to get me this far. I've spent some time on Geocaching.com. For anyone that is interested, my screen name there is JackPine78

Happy Caching!

_________________
"The power of imagination makes us infinite" - John Muir
DD Ride03 Limited KJ
Toy: 1961 Ford Fairlane http://www.cardomain.com/ride/3182277
Current Mods: Surco Safari Rack, K&N Filter, Curt Hitch, VR3 HU, Optima Yellow, Frankie II Prem & JBA's Gen 4.5 UCAs, Skid Row t-case skid, and more!
Coming soon:???


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 Post subject: Which GPS unit and why....?
PostPosted: Wed Mar 23, 2011 1:49 pm 
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I currently have the vista hcx and like it. Solid unit but I ordered a 450 from cabelas because I could not pass up the price...it is on BO until may 1st...we will see They suck at BOs.

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plus a ton of other things. J.E.E.P.


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 Post subject: Re: Which GPS unit and why....?
PostPosted: Wed Mar 23, 2011 4:05 pm 
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I got a Garmin Nuvi 500 from Cabelas about 3 months ago. It will do on/off road mapping, plus marine navigation if you get the chip for it. It's small enough to slip into a pocket, but big enough to see easily at a glance. The batteries are replaceable too. Geocaches, POIs, andother extras can all be easily loaded. You can put in 5 detailed caches a day for free from the Garmin site, or as many basic ones as you want fron Geocaching.com. Having only tried for two caches with it I can say that Geocaching is not the greatest with it, but it does get you to the right area pretty easily. I use a cheap Etrex Venture handheld to zero in more on the cache once I get close. The Nuvi 500 was $500 when it came out last year, but Cabela's had it on sale not to long ago when I got mine for $179. I had a $75 gift card and a $20 off orders over $150 coupon so it was a hell of a deal for me!

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 Post subject: Re: Which GPS unit and why....?
PostPosted: Wed Apr 20, 2011 8:22 pm 
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If you're interested in netbook software, try Street Atlas USA. I've never used it on a netbook, but I've been using it on notebooks for 10 years, and love it. It's designed for netbook usage and, compared to a nuvi or streetpilot, it's like navigating with a big screen TV. (Especially if you happen to have a 17" widescreen) :D

You can connect a nuvi to it, or get an Earthmate (also from delorme). The earthmate's seem to be more sensitive, reception-wise than the Nuvis. Nine out of 10 times, I use my Nuvi or my Streetpilot (It's old, but I still like it), but now and then, I like to see a larger overview of the area than the automotive GPSs can give - that's where the Street Atlas comes in handy. Also, at the end of the day, I can download my tracks and review, OR I can use the software to check out possible locations for the next day's travel.

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 Post subject: Re: Which GPS unit and why....?
PostPosted: Sat Apr 23, 2011 12:37 pm 
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Well, we used the Oregon 450 and at first I was like :banghead: :banghead: :banghead: :banghead: :banghead: :furious: :furious: :furious: :furious: but after playing with it for some time and reading a ton of documents on it I am more :pepper: :pepper: It is a good little unit but does take some time to figure out. The paperless caching is pretty nice too. For me, I seriously thought about returning it when I first used it though and going back to my eTrex Vista HCx. The reason being, trying to navigate the map within the GPS. Sure the touch screen is nice but it is not as...quick perhaps as the HCx. Not sure why perhaps it is just a learning curve thing. :ROTFL:

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OME HD lift
35" tires (thus far)
plus a ton of other things. J.E.E.P.


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