navigators

Submitted: Sunday, Oct 27, 2013 at 14:45
ThreadID: 104883 Views:1393 Replies:7 FollowUps:8
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Hi Guys,I have had no experience with on board navigators.How accurate are they away from major cities and regional centres especially up the west coast?Also are they easy to use or are maps the better option?
kman
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Reply By: Herbal - Sunday, Oct 27, 2013 at 15:05

Sunday, Oct 27, 2013 at 15:05
They are very accurate.

They work via satellite, so yes, they will work in remote areas...In fact anywhere they can see a satellite, which is pretty much the whole of Earth.

They work via GPS, Global Positioning System. GPS is owned by the US Department of Defence. As the world changes, ie roads are built or closed etc, so too does the info stored at the base GPS station. This means that they need to up date their information from time to time.

Most on board navigators (car GPS) download maps and work off them. All they do is "talk" to a satellite for exact position. For this reason, you need to download new maps from time to time. So look for a GPS that offers FREE lifetime maps !! Otherwise, you will have to pay for map up dates !! My GPS is Garmin, with lifetime free maps. I noticed a few days ago a Navman advertised with lifetime free maps...So shop around.

Ease of use ?...about as hard as posting to this forum ! You can just turn it on, and it will tell you where you are, yes tell you! They speak...Type in the address (yes right down to house number) and it will talk you through the entire drive. It will tell you when to turn and give you notice of up coming turns. You can even program it to take you home, or any other place...So if you get lost and can't remember the name of the caravan park or camp ground you are staying on, you can simply press "home" and the GPS will guide you to safety :)
AnswerID: 520442

Follow Up By: Herbal - Sunday, Oct 27, 2013 at 15:09

Sunday, Oct 27, 2013 at 15:09
Sorry, I should have said you need to tell the GPS that your current location, ie caravan park or camp ground is your home location before you head off...So it knows where to bring you back to :)
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Reply By: Ross M - Sunday, Oct 27, 2013 at 15:53

Sunday, Oct 27, 2013 at 15:53
kman1
My on board navigator always says the map is going the wrong way and why did you turn right here!

The electronic one is far better and can see the satellites and knows where it is on earth.
The unit and the degree of accuracy of the map used is the governing thing, most are pretty accurate.

Same accuracy as in town.

When you asked, "are the maps a better option" do you mean paper maps or other electronic maps available for the GPS unit you buy?
AnswerID: 520443

Follow Up By: kman1 - Monday, Oct 28, 2013 at 14:06

Monday, Oct 28, 2013 at 14:06
hi Ross,I meant paper maps.
kman
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Reply By: John and Regina M - Sunday, Oct 27, 2013 at 16:15

Sunday, Oct 27, 2013 at 16:15
I use paper maps.
Very cheap and they don't break down. Takes a bit of skill to navigate with them, but most of the places we go a GPS would be a lazy persons short trip to the grave.
Accompanied with some local knowledge, beats the hell out of a GPS.

AnswerID: 520445

Follow Up By: Racey - Sunday, Oct 27, 2013 at 16:41

Sunday, Oct 27, 2013 at 16:41
I bet you have a Sextant too :-)

Cheers
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Follow Up By: Ross M - Sunday, Oct 27, 2013 at 20:52

Sunday, Oct 27, 2013 at 20:52
He has one of those magnetic pointing thingos too.
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Follow Up By: The Explorer - Sunday, Oct 27, 2013 at 22:15

Sunday, Oct 27, 2013 at 22:15
Hi John and/or Regina

GPS/Paper maps are not mutually exclusive navigation aids. Use what best suits requirements at the time and don't limit yourself to one or the other out of spite. A GPS "beats the hell out of a" paper map in many (many) circumstances. Just because you haven't found a use for a GPS doesn't mean they represent a "short trip to a grave". They are more reliable than you suggest - I use one almost every day as part of my work..and play. There is certainly no need to throw the "paper maps" away just because you have a GPS and visa versa - they are both very handy navigation aids.

A person who has both and knows how to use them (along with local knowledge, if applicable) will leave a person who just uses paper maps or a GPS (and not both) for dead over all scenarios.

To me, a person claiming paper maps or GPS are the best option over using both (and other navigation aids e.g. compass) clearly indicates a complete lack of knowledge/experience on the subject of navigating and recording accurate position data.

Cheers
Greg
I sent one final shout after him to stick to the track, to which he replied “All right,” That was the last ever seen of Gibson - E Giles 23 April 1874

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Follow Up By: Member - PJR (NSW) - Monday, Oct 28, 2013 at 07:44

Monday, Oct 28, 2013 at 07:44
Total agree with you Greg. We have a GPS running both street, no idea the name of it, and full offroad navigation, the Oziexplorer application, software as an integral part of the in-car entertainment system that is installed in the dash. A new adition is an old cheap laptop mainly used for photo and video file storage, that is secured away in the back with Oziexplore in it as well. And most importantly, we naturally carry paper maps. There is also a compas in the console.

We recently had an argument with a rock wall and the GPS in the dash failed. Oops. But we had paper maps. No issue at all.

I hate clutter and gadgets in the cabin. No phone mounts and no windscreen stuck stuff apart from the windscreen video camera up behind the rear view window.

The in-dash unit suits us as both of us can use it.

Phil
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Reply By: Bazooka - Sunday, Oct 27, 2013 at 17:34

Sunday, Oct 27, 2013 at 17:34
A more accurate comment would be that they know your position to within a dozen metres but they can only "navigate" as well as the data (maps) you feed them. So, if your digital maps aren't accurate/up-to-date then you could be stuffed, or at the least very confused when confronted by tracks which you can see but aren't mapped or are mapped but are no longer trafficable. So, the digital maps/data are in fact at least as important as your GPS navigator. Plenty of reading on this site under
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Follow Up By: Bazooka - Sunday, Oct 27, 2013 at 20:42

Sunday, Oct 27, 2013 at 20:42
...under Articles


(NB don't use <> around your words or they wll magically not appear)
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Follow Up By: The Explorer - Monday, Oct 28, 2013 at 10:39

Monday, Oct 28, 2013 at 10:39
Hi

Back in the old days GPS units didn't come with maps at all (and some of the cheaper modern day ones still don't)...you can still navigate efficiently without a base map of any type (e.g. enter a waypoint and navigate to it (not all GPS users sit in cars:). Obviously better with a map in many circumstances but it is certainly not 100% essential.

Cheers
Greg
I sent one final shout after him to stick to the track, to which he replied “All right,” That was the last ever seen of Gibson - E Giles 23 April 1874

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Reply By: rocco2010 - Sunday, Oct 27, 2013 at 18:25

Sunday, Oct 27, 2013 at 18:25
Gidday

There are plenty of stories about how people have been guided up the creek (literally) by their GPS navigation system. Equally an old map can be pretty dangerous too. I have some old street directories which would get me into trouble!
Navigators and paper maps complement each other, but if I could only have one it would be a modern paper map of the area I was about to visit. I know my map will never get a flat battery or a cracked screen or some other technical fault. And there is no better way to plan a journey than to spread the map out on the dining table. Bit had to get a perspective with a 7inch screen.
Cheers
AnswerID: 520460

Reply By: Rangiephil - Sunday, Oct 27, 2013 at 20:03

Sunday, Oct 27, 2013 at 20:03
I have used Garmin Nuvis quite a bit now , and except for the odd Brain Fart when they try to send you from Emerald to Rocky via Cairns they are really good.

If you are interested in Minor tracks you can buy a Topo map which has far more detail and smaller tracks on it, eg driving from Punsand to the Cape via the coast track my Garmin topo alerted me to every creek crossing accurately.

The biggest problem with them IMHO is as noted by the previous poster as lack of perspective. In Garmins anyway to find track names you often have to zoom right in to the Maximum magnification and you lose the overall feel of where you are.

I found a new use for mine the other day. If you select "offroad" they will give you a compass bearing to another Lat/long from your position. You can get TV tower lat longs off the net, and find true north with the compass in your Iphone3g and later. Hold both and you can point your TV antenna.LOL. I know there is a program for this but I haven't refound it yet.
So IMHO you also need maps to get overall perspective.
Regards Philip A


AnswerID: 520471

Reply By: Stevesub1 - Monday, Oct 28, 2013 at 08:56

Monday, Oct 28, 2013 at 08:56
I am old school and used maps until recently, now use GPS almost exclusively when driving, BUT still carry paper maps. We were boating once using charts and one boat we came across were completly lost as their GPS busted, no charts, no understanding on how to use them.

We also lost our GPS (it broke) when we were in the middle of a storm in the boat, no problems as we knew where we were on the chart. It could have been a major as the navigation in that area is tricky.

In the car we now use a Garmin Nuvi, or if I am in a rental car, my phone (Android). On the phone, I use Google maps for maps and navigation but the net is needed for nagivation (you can download some maps for off line use), "Maps with Me" and "Mapfactor Navigation" (turn by turn navigation). Both of these use Open Street maps which are downloaded onto the phone (free). I have found that these 3 are all I need for what we do and are very good for international use as well without breaking the piggy bank as there are free.
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