GPS units

Submitted: Thursday, Aug 21, 2003 at 21:56
ThreadID: 6743 Views:1860 Replies:7 FollowUps:4
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I was wondering what GPS units most of you forum boys and gals have , I am in the market and confussion is a understatement . the colour megalen looks good , or do I go for the lap top software ??? does the megalis plug into a larger screen like a 7 inch tv in the dash ??? . I think I would hate to have to squint every time I look at the screen .

thanks in advance
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Reply By: Luke - Thursday, Aug 21, 2003 at 22:18

Thursday, Aug 21, 2003 at 22:18
I use a Magellan Meridian - only just got it a few weeks ago - so can't really comment on it with too much authority yet - but I'm loving it so far!

I have it sitting in a mobile phone holder mounted on the dash of my GQ SWB, it's very stable and the visibility on the inbuilt screen is just fine - quite clear and easy to read whilst moving :-)

I think having a laptop on the seat next to me would take more of an effort to turn around and look at than the GPS mounted on the dash. JMHO....

I don't think I'd go for the Meridian colour - methinks the colour screen would chew through batteries alot quicker, and the mono screen is fine :-)

The Meridian certainly is fully compatible with moving map software on a laptop though, so if you get a Meridian and decide you want the laptop option - that's fine. Not sure about sending the magellan screen signal to a DVD screen in-dash though.

For more detailed info on the Meridian series - check out the yahoo group..... http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Magellan_Meridian/

AnswerID: 28663

Reply By: Mad Dog Morgan (Vic) - Thursday, Aug 21, 2003 at 22:47

Thursday, Aug 21, 2003 at 22:47
I use a simple Magellan 320 with a laptop. As I don't usually have a passenger the laptop sits on the seat but it is a bit of a pain turning to view it. I have a mount arriving any day now which will position the laptop more in front of me and free up the passenger seat.

I tried the kids 6" dvd screen from the Falcon with the laptop but the poor resolution makes it unusable for mapping, great for watching movies though.

Everyone is different, some don't like the small screen a gps provides. Some find using the gps with a PDA adequate then others like me like a 15" laptop screen.
There is no right or wrong way.Hooroo
AnswerID: 28669

Follow Up By: Groove - Friday, Aug 22, 2003 at 15:21

Friday, Aug 22, 2003 at 15:21
I have a 320 as well, its been very reliable I really cant fault it.
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FollowupID: 19991

Follow Up By: Mad Dog Morgan (Vic) - Saturday, Aug 23, 2003 at 11:28

Saturday, Aug 23, 2003 at 11:28
yep, mine hasn't missed a beat likewise with my old Magellan 2000xlHooroo
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Reply By: petprass - Thursday, Aug 21, 2003 at 23:08

Thursday, Aug 21, 2003 at 23:08
If you don't have any preference for a particular brand, then go over to the yahoo groups - Magellan Meridian. You can research to your hearts content and decide for yourself.

I personally have a Magellan Platinum loaded with DiscoverAus Streets and Tracks maps. The gps is brilliant, however I have not personally compared it with say the Garmin of the same standard. From my research into the differences between the two main brands, the Magellan has a better arial and can keep a lock on satellites even in some cases in buildings (near a window though). Also the DiscoverAus maps are better than what Garmin have to offer (I am told). As mentioned by Luke, the screen on the Magellan is fine to view and easy to keep track of where you are. The colour is expensive, chews up batteries and the colour washes out in sunlight - brilliant at night though.

With DiscoverAus loaded I have the whole of Aus in my gps and I can find any location with ease. DiscoverAus also allows you to plug the gps into a laptop and have moving map functionality. Not something that I am going to do that often because of having to keep a laptop powered and in the cabin with cables going all over the place, but it can be going in the background while travelling and referred to from time to time to check on progress. As I say the gps screen is fine to view in any case.

Peter
AnswerID: 28675

Reply By: Niko - Thursday, Aug 21, 2003 at 23:22

Thursday, Aug 21, 2003 at 23:22
All GPS units that have an RTCM-104 output will connect to any device that resembles a PC. 4WD buffs like the idea of using a laptop (notebook) with a PCMCIA GPS Card or a GPS hooked up to the PC serial port. You will need some kind of PC software like mapsource from Garmin or Discover Aus from Magellan to make it all happen. Using OzzieExplorer is an option as a sofware as well.This output is received by a PC based software that talks to the GPS. Examples of this is Garmin's mapsource and some others as mentioned further. To make a TV display the information the PC must have a TV out option or use a digital screen that accepts output from a PC through its 15 pin video output (the output that is for a secondary screen or monitor). From my own experience, most people prefer the Garmin over Magellan 3:1.

The other issue is, where do you intend to go with your GPS? Is it just bitumen roads or dirt tracks as well? I would recommend the Streetpilot 3 for use on bitumen without question. The new iQue 3600 from garmin is another option. For dirt tracks etc I wouldn't go past one of the mapping Magellans because Garmin have no Deasert Tracks to speak of. Well, it does have a few but you have to guess the name of them.

If you need more info, e-mail me.
AnswerID: 28679

Reply By: BurnieM - Thursday, Aug 21, 2003 at 23:34

Thursday, Aug 21, 2003 at 23:34
A basic GPRS is fine for getting your location if you are familar with map grids.

A moving map GPSR is perhaps the most useful giving you an easily readable continuous on screen relative postion.

A third option is any GPSR with an NMEA output used with PC or PocketPC mapping product such as OziExplorer.

I believe a moving map GPSR is the most useable and user friendly in a 4WD environment.

Have a look at a Garmin GPSmap 176 with a 64MB data card and Mapsource Metroguide Australia mapping CD
This is a mid sized 'moving map' GPSR originally designed for marine use.
This combination with a monochrome screen will cost $1545 and with a colour screen $1775

Garmins Mapsource Metroguide and Magellans DiscoverAus mapping CDs are both good mapping products with excellent metropolitan area mapping and good rural area mapping including most rural towns and many tracks. They are both street map products (not topo).

Only Garmin maps may be loaded to Garmin GPSRs and only Magellan maps may be loaded to Magellan GPSRs.
AnswerID: 28680

Follow Up By: BurnieM - Thursday, Aug 21, 2003 at 23:36

Thursday, Aug 21, 2003 at 23:36
You may also hear about Garmins Mapsource City Navigator. This is a turn by turn auto-routing mapping product and lacks detail in rural areas. I would not recommend this product for 4WDing.
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Reply By: Member - Ray - Thursday, Aug 21, 2003 at 23:54

Thursday, Aug 21, 2003 at 23:54
I have a Magellan Meridian with a Toshiba Satelite(older laptop) running Discoveraus and Oziexplorer also. It's a bit awkard for the pasenger so I looked at a 14in monitor today for $400 and the computer can go on the back seat and the monitor in a nice little bracket I will make up myself.(monitor is only 50 mm thick at the midle at the rear so wil fit nicely).
AnswerID: 28685

Reply By: Eric ( Melb.) - Friday, Aug 22, 2003 at 07:52

Friday, Aug 22, 2003 at 07:52
thanks guys for all the info . Today I will take another turn , & look at the VDO range also , , I wish some one would make a hand held GPS with enough memory to run 3 states and you could plug it into a cars tv direct with no laptop . lol

but thats just to much to ask isnt it lol . common inventers get with it heheheh
AnswerID: 28699

Follow Up By: BurnieM - Friday, Aug 22, 2003 at 09:31

Friday, Aug 22, 2003 at 09:31
with any of the auto-routing GPSRs (including VDO) make a point of looking at the rural mapping. Many of them have very limited coverage.

To load all of Australia for Garmin you need a 64MB Garmin data card and for Magellan a 256MB SD card (Magellan mapping requires manual changeover between regions).

Garmins Emap or Magellans Meridan/Sportrak range will load all of this in a handheld package.
Handheld screens are okay but a bit small in the car.

Nobody makes a GPSR that you can plug an external screen into. For this you would need a PC (or PocketPC) based product and run the screen from the PC.

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FollowupID: 19949

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