GPS Units

Can anyone recommend a GPS unit that works well in the car and in the hand, but also is good for street and off road navigation.
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Reply By: Michael ( Moss Vale NSW) - Tuesday, Apr 28, 2009 at 21:01

Tuesday, Apr 28, 2009 at 21:01
I just bought a garmin Nuvi 760, a lot of recommendations on this site. You can add outback maps on SD card to the unit.. it has bluetooth and mp3's through your stereo car speakers. Heaps more great features. They started at $800 a while back and now $388 at Dick Smith. I have found it east to get around the unit, user friendly and looking forward to using it off road. Michael

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Reply By: Member - Matt (Perth-WA) - Tuesday, Apr 28, 2009 at 21:06

Tuesday, Apr 28, 2009 at 21:06
Garmin NUVI 500!! Magic little device.

Water proof, great street nav and 8 hrs battery for hand held operation and I got shonkymaps on a 2gig card for free.

Even has Text to Speach for spoken street names!

My recommendation

Matt.

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Reply By: Member - Tony V (NSW) - Tuesday, Apr 28, 2009 at 21:11

Tuesday, Apr 28, 2009 at 21:11
Dave,

I have a Nuvi 760, any Garmin is good.
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Reply By: Member - Stephen L (Clare SA) - Tuesday, Apr 28, 2009 at 21:22

Tuesday, Apr 28, 2009 at 21:22
Hi Dave,
I have yet to see one, but they say that the new Nuvi 5000 is unreal when used with Topo Australia. With 5" screen, the Garmin rep said that when it was placed alongside the Hema Navigator, it blew it out of the water.

Like I have said, this is what I was told by the rep.

Cheers

Stephen
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Follow Up By: Member - Stephen L (Clare SA) - Tuesday, Apr 28, 2009 at 21:24

Tuesday, Apr 28, 2009 at 21:24
Hi Dave
I should have said, the Nuvi 760 is now being replaced with the Nuvi 765. The rep claim far better than its stable mate.

Cheers

Stephen
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Follow Up By: Sand Man (SA) - Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 07:23

Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 07:23
Stephen,

Not knocking the Garmin products, but I would be very wary of a Garmin rep that simply promoted the product they sell over another brand.

In fact I just wouldn't believe him/her. Vested interests.

I would go somewhere that sell both and compare the products I am interested in.


Bill

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Follow Up By: Member - Stephen L (Clare SA) - Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 08:02

Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 08:02
Hi Bill,
Knowing Garmin products, I have no doubt that the Rep is correct.
I always use oziexplorer on the laptop when travelling, in conjunction with various Garmin GPS Units and BU 353 USB Mouse. I recently purchased the Garmin Topo Australia SD Card for my GPS map 60 CSx unit and recently while up in north west Victoria, on Lindsay Island, the Topo Australia on the GPS Map 60 CSx had every track on Lindsay Island Marked and named, yet the good old 2008 Natmap series Topo maps loaded and OziExplorer on the laptop said that we were on no tracks at all and going cross country.

From my observations alone, this same SD card in the 5.2" dash mounted Nuvi 5000 would then have to be far better than the Hema Navigation, that is only using the Natmap series of topo maps.

Cheers

Stephen
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Follow Up By: The Explorer - Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 16:43

Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 16:43
..Yes there are many maps you can use in OziExplorer - 250K ones are no where near the best (though they have a purpose) - options are many ...plus of course you can use airphotos in OziExplorer. Horses for courses - its not actaully possible to make a generalised statement and say what is best as it depends on each persons requirements. If I was restricted to buying just one gps I would find a Nuvi almost useless for my needs - but that of course doesnt apply to everyone - many happy customers.

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: Sand Man (SA) - Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 18:11

Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 18:11
Stephen,

Not quite right mate.

The Hema Navigator uses its own Hema maps, not the NatMap series.

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Follow Up By: The Explorer - Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 18:24

Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 18:24
BZZZZZZ

Next contestant:)

Q: What maps are included in the Hema Navigator?

Correct Answer = The Hema Navigator includes the Australia 4WD raster map collection AND THE COMPLETE GEOSCIENCE 1:250,000 scale maps covering all of Australia.


HN FAQ's

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: Sand Man (SA) - Thursday, Apr 30, 2009 at 20:21

Thursday, Apr 30, 2009 at 20:21
Greg,

?????
Who are you buzzing mate?

From the web site you posted:-
Australia 4WD DVD
ISBN13: 9781865003986

Map Date: 0
Edition: 1st
Scale: Various
RRP: $149 (30 HEMA regional maps preloaded on SD card, included with the Hema Navigator Unit. DVD disc itself is not included.)

Description: With the growing use of in-car navigation Hema Maps has produced a collection of raster maps on DVD. This DVD is based on images of Hema's regional maps and is compatible with most Windows based navigational programs. If the user has a GPS, a laptop or personal organiser and a matching navigational program, then the Australia 4WD DVD will provide in-car navigation.

The Maps Hema use are their own and not the NATMAP Raster 2008 series.

Bill

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Follow Up By: The Explorer - Friday, May 01, 2009 at 01:09

Friday, May 01, 2009 at 01:09
Hi - not sure if you are confused or me. All I was trying to say was that the Hema Navigator comes with the Natmap 250K series of maps (as does the DVD you mention).... in addition to their own maps. If you scroll down the page from which you cut the DVD contents description

Scroll down the page to see the Natmaps included on DVD/Hema Navigator

you will see an image that looks very similar to this...

Image Could Not Be Found

and from another website re Hema Navigator..

"The accompanying SD card is also pre-loaded with Australia wide topographical (1:250K Natmap) and 4WD maps (all of Hema Destination series, ie Cape York, Kakadu etc) for use with OziExplorer"

Also - I have the Hema DVD - it has the Natmaps on it - explain that one:)

Bottom line...

The Hema products discussed include their own maps AND the NATMAP Raster series. Im not kidding ..its true.

No big deal.

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: Sand Man (SA) - Friday, May 01, 2009 at 07:11

Friday, May 01, 2009 at 07:11
OK,

Now I understand.
Strange that Hema would bother supplying the Natmap maps when they go to the trouble of developing their own product.
I would have thought adding the Hema Desert map series would be more value.

Personally, I have had no problem with the NATMAP series of maps I use with Ozi. Originally NATMAP 2005 and now NATMAP 2008.

Bill


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Follow Up By: Member - Stephen L (Clare SA) - Friday, May 01, 2009 at 07:32

Friday, May 01, 2009 at 07:32
Hi Bill
That is the point I was trying to raise the other day. Like You, I started off a number of years ago with the 2005 series of Natmaps and upgraded to the 2008 series, and have found a few very small changes. I have always used Ozi and found it for me the best add off road accessory that I have purchased. While on Lindsay Island, which is in the top north west of Victoria in the Murray-Sunset National Park, tracks that have been there for a long time, still remain un plotted on the 2008 Natmap series, while the Garmin Topo Australia map on the Hand help GPS Map 60CSx had the tracks named with their correct names - eg Sandford Track, and all tracks in their correct position.

Cheers

Stephen
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Follow Up By: The Explorer - Friday, May 01, 2009 at 10:09

Friday, May 01, 2009 at 10:09
Hello Bill - I suppose Hema include them because they are free and compliment their own maps. Hema maps are very good for their intended purpose but they are mostly small scale e.g. the Great Desert Tracks series are 1:1,250,000 - scaling off shows highways being represented by 900m wide red lines, the CSR is a 200m wide line!! They show all the main "tourist" routes and a few side tracks but, overall, don’t have as much track detail as the 250K maps. This should not be seen as a criticism of the Hema maps - they have not been created to replace the 250K series - they have a different specific use and they do it well (IMHO).

Hema’s other claim to fame is that they re-mapped a lot of the main tracks so they are in some cases more accurately positioned/up to date than the same areas/tracks shown on the 250K series.

On the same token there is only so much detail you can show on a 250K map - it is no surprise they are, overall, not as detailed as Oztopo or Topo Aus both of which claim (I think) to be equivalent to a 25K map in detail. You will however still find some areas with tracks on the 250K maps that aren’t on one or the other of these Garmin products, though that is probably the exception and not the rule.

Trouble is there is no single map set that will suit everyone all of the time. My solution, get every map you can get your hands on!!

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: Member - Mick O (VIC) - Tuesday, Apr 28, 2009 at 22:07

Tuesday, Apr 28, 2009 at 22:07
Can the Nuvi be used as a hand held unit? The Garmin Etrex series (look at the Vista HcX) provide a great all purpose GPS unit that can provide street navigation but is also a state of the art hand held unit. Some of the larger Magellan units provide a good multi-purpose GPS unit as well. I've used the Vista to good effect and also use it as a receiver for my Computer based Nav programs (Ozi and Trackranger).

Cheers Mick.
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Reply By: WayneD - Tuesday, Apr 28, 2009 at 22:12

Tuesday, Apr 28, 2009 at 22:12
Had a look at the new VMS touring GPS at the Rosehill show and it looks pretty good have alook at www.vms4x4.com
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Reply By: chisel - Tuesday, Apr 28, 2009 at 22:23

Tuesday, Apr 28, 2009 at 22:23
If you're inclined more towards hiking/handheld use I'd look at a Garmin Oregon but you need to buy the streetmaps as extra, and it isn't going to be a great street nav device.

Otherwise I reckon a nuvi 500 is probably the pick - biased more towards road.
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Reply By: Robin Miller - Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 07:52

Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 07:52
A lot of the units above are weak on real 4wd features so you need to know what your after.

Example - marine grade rated, recording tracks, navigating tracks you can load yourself and even as basic as entering coords in UTM formats.

Most of our group still use the Garmin 276c for these reasons , its one of a dwindling few that really meet all the requirements.

Its hopeless on MP3's, horrorscopes, pictures and dialing your phone for you though.

http://www.gpsoz.com.au/garmin/garmin_276c.htm




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Reply By: Willem - Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 07:55

Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 07:55
I have a HP IPAQ PDA 4.5" screen with Tom Tom street maps and a host of other features. I have one SD card with Natmap 2008 running in Oziexplorer and another card with a variety of maps including Hema Desert Tracks all running in Oziexplorer. It works for me and cost $675 all up.
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Reply By: Wahroonga Farm - Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 08:50

Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 08:50
And with the Garmin Nuvis the screen IS bright and easy to see in daylight. Very important in the decidedly sunny land. :)

Just make sure that the battery life on the Nuvi can do the distance away frorm the vehicle.

Note: Garmin is the only GPS maker with open source mapping protocol. You can make your own maps, but plenty of good folk have already done that for you. :)
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Reply By: Sigmund - Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 09:31

Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 09:31
I'm only getting around 2.5 hours batt life out of the Nuvi 760 so without the bother of an external batt pack its useless on foot.

The voice prompts are also quiet so in a louder car than my softroader and on rough roads you'd have trouble hearing it.

You'll have to figure out your primary use Dave and cater for that first. If it's a car unit then for foot use you could add an Etrex for $140.
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Reply By: Member - Dave D (NT) - Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 10:33

Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 10:33
Thanks to All that have given me some ideas. Will let you know what I decide on...

Cheers to all
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Reply By: The Explorer - Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 14:26

Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 14:26
Hello - in car navigators (eg Garmin Nuvi/Tom Tom/Navman/Mio) and Handheld GPS units (e.g. Garmin 60 series/Etrex/Oregon/Colorado. Magellan eXplorist/Triton) have different specifications for obvious reasons e.g. in car navigators (PNDs) are generally not water proof, have poor battery life (and don’t take AAs for example..so no changing batteries mid walk), and lack functions desired by those on foot (e.g. Geocachers). Handhelds generally have smaller screens and are introverted, so won’t talk to you. Some don’t have auto-routing so even if they could talk they would just tell you you’ve purchased the wrong gps.

Not sure there is an affordable setup that is properly suited for both uses. You probably need to reassess your requirements and provide some more info on your intended use/needs. Nuvi is a good choice (and appear popular) for car based activities though some other more versatile options as well (e.g. Hema Nav or unlocked Mio/Navman on which you can run other mapping programs besides just car nav). Garmin 276c is (as mentioned) also obviously highly regarded by some – my mate has one – good solid unit but they are a bit more costly than other options (which do much the same thing) and require special, expensive data cards. Like the Nuvi they are also are restricted to using a limited array of Garmin maps e.g. no airphotos, cadastral, geology maps etc. Which may or may not be an issue (now or later when you catch the “bug”).

There are many different handhelds to choose from – the range of Garmins being the current pick of the bunch (IMHO). Depending on your budget you may be better of getting two units – one for in the car and one for outdoors. That is the path I have taken.

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 - Dave D (NT) - Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 18:10

Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 18:10
Greg,

Thanks for that!! I am starting to realise that there is a need for two different units. I already have a tom tom 1 and that work great in the city or urban areas. so far it is between three different units the HEMA nav, gpsmap c276, and the magellan crossover. So it just about comparing the unit and working out what is best for my situation and how good the budget is.

cheers

dave
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Follow Up By: The Explorer - Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 18:40

Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 18:40
...no expert and at risk of being hunted down and killed, would steer clear of Crossover. Also make sure you add up all cost of maps and accessories you need as well - 276C comes with no maps ..or even memory to use them i.e. you have to buy in car cradle, power cable, memory card and then maps. Not saying it isnt viable option..just get the calculator out. Also if considering Hema have a look at cheaper option of unlocking Mio/Navman - lost of people now heading down this path (few recent threads on this subject).. though the Hema is a good "plug and play" option if you have the dosh and dont like fiddling with gadgets.

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: KennyBWilson - Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 21:24

Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 21:24
Hi Dave D, if you got a Tom Tom then just buy a good hand held, Oregon's are nice , if you want maps then just download Shonkymaps for free , Shonkymaps are 1;250k just like the hema 1:250k , not sure if i'd want to pay $950 for 250k maps on a PDA style unit.
There are other units that can run Ozi Ce for under $350

I like the VMS units but at $2700 I'm not sure if it's worth that much also anything can breakdown so having a backup unit can come in handy.

Just my 2 cents worth
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