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Tahoe Skier5000

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Everything posted by Tahoe Skier5000

  1. Only in backwords world is it an improvement to pay a company to make your device have less longevity, but suit yourself!
  2. Resurrecting an old thread here... I realized just recently after importing some tracks that my PN-40s are affected by this rollover issue. I tried to resolve it myself by clearing the NVM cache and re-downloading the almanac, but the date appears to still be off. Aside from the timestamp date being off, and the sun/moon calculator defaulting to 2008, the GPS appears to work normally. The time is also correct. GPS lock-on times at cold start are quick (less than 30-45 seconds), and location accuracy is normal. My biggest concern is whether or not the almanac data is being used by the GPS since it requires the correct week number to predict satellite locations. I did some testing comparing the PN-40 to my Etrex legend (which has the correct date) and was surprised to see that the PN-40 appears to be pulling the correct almanac data for the current date. I don't know how its doing it, but it appears to be doing it... What I did was to let the GPS sit overnight so that the ephemeris data became obsolete and the GPS would refer to the almanac at startup. In the morning, I started it up alongside the etex and observed satellite locations on the screen. They appeared to match reasonably well. I then compared the PN-40 sat locations to the in-the-sky website (https://in-the-sky.org/satmap_radar.php) and both appeared to match reasonably well. So I guess the moral of the story here is that the PN-40 (and possibly the rest of the PN-lineup) is affected by the rollover bug, but the GPS performance seems to be unaffected both in terms of accuracy and acquisition performance. I'm still not sure how it's pulling the correct almanac data, unless it's calculating the time difference between last GPS shutoff time and the current time, and just 'fast forwarding' through the almanac by that amount......... or maybe the internal date used by the GPS is indeed correct, but for whatever reason delorme added a separate calendar date for other functions (i.e. track log time stamp, sun/moon, etc.), and that calendar date is being incorrectly converted. Who knows. I will reach out to Garmin to see if they can release a "courtesy" patch for us PN-40 users, like they did for the PN-60, but regardless, the core GPS functionality seems to be unaffected by the rollover bug.
  3. The 66SR has a non-replaceable rechargeable battery. That's a massive deal breaker in my book... so out of those two, go with the 750t as it uses standard AA, and will give you far more flexibility on power. Or, if you are intent on the 66 series, go with the 66ST model instead as it also uses AA batteries. Garmin sells a rechargeable battery pack that can be used in the AA battery compartment if you prefer to charge your batteries in the unit. This is a far better solution than being stuck with an internal battery that can't be replaced when it eventually wears out. Lastly, always avoid being suckered in by the battery life numbers when comparing AA battery units vs. rechargeable li-ion. It's tempting to see the higher number and think its a no brainer, but don't fall for it! Those higher numbers are when the device is brand new. Battery life will continue to decline as the unit ages, 1, 2, 5 years down the line, eventually dying. This makes it very difficult to predict how long the unit will last on a hiking/backpacking trip. These batteries also don't like to sit around not being used, so if you leave the GPS in a closet for 6 months or more, and pull it out again for a trip, the battery may have degraded significantly just doing nothing. In some cases, it may not even work, and you'll be stuck with a paperweight. You will never have these problems with AA batteries. Pop in a fresh set and you're good to go, with predictable, reliable power, indefinitely, for the life of the GPS.
  4. I don't believe Topo 7 maps are tied to one GPS. I own 3 PN-40s, and I know I have successfully transferred maps to two of the units from the same Topo install. I can't speak for Topo 9, so I don't know if they changed all of this for version 9. FYI, try following this guide: https://www.rei.com/media/35cd8f18-9268-4e7f-ae1a-fb57b2c15767
  5. You go to File, Open, and select the .gpx file from geocaching.com. Be sure you're exporting GPX version 1.0, not 1.0.1 (setting can be changed in your geocaching.com profile settings). That said, I didn't realize the 60csx worked with Basecamp. I assumed since it was an older model that it would only work with Mapsource (some of the really old units like the legacy etrexes don't work with Basecamp). Regardless, Basecamp is a much nicer program overall, so if it's working for you then stick with it! Are you able to transfer your maps to and from Basecamp to the 60csx? Some of the older Garmin maps (like early 2000s topo) aren't compatible with Basecamp.
  6. FYI, Mapsource will still work on Windows 10. I have it working on mine.
  7. As far as I'm concerned, if the GPS does what you need it to do, and the supporting PC software (i.e. Mapsource) still works, then keep using it until you no longer can. I still use an Etrex Legend (purchased in 2004) from time to time. It works great. I did have to correct for a GPS date rollover issue last year, but that was easily resolved with a utility program I found online (gpseow.exe). Also, Garmin Mapsource is hanging on by a thread... last update from Garmin was 2010, but it still works on Windows 10, for now. I believe you will also need Mapsource for the 60CSX if you plan to transfer any waypoints, tracks, and maps to the unit, so keep that in mind. Data transfer to these old GPSrs is extremely slow by modern standards, but it will still do the job (as long as you have patience). That said, the 66sr (with AA batteries) is a great, modern GPSr option. If you see yourself needing tons of map space (or constantly transferring maps to and from the unit), are interested in all of the (IMO) gimmicky wireless features they tend to load on GPSrs these days, or just really want high performance in general, then the 66 may be worth the price. It really becomes a question of: do I just need it to be a GPS, or do I want all the bells and whistles?
  8. Of course, your GPS is still new. Report back with battery life after 2-3 years of use. My 14 year old PN-40 and 18 year old Garmin Legend still get the same battery life they did when new. You can even remove the batteries, store the GPRs for years, then pop in a fresh set of AAs and you will get the same reliable battery life right away. You simply can't do that with built-in rechargeable batteries. They will degrade over time, and after 5 years of sitting in a closet, battery life will be significantly lower when the unit is fired back up again. In such a scenario it would also be difficult to gauge the level of battery loss right away, so if you had planned to resurrect the GPS for a backpacking trip or whatever, you would have a difficult time guesstimating how long it would last on a charge, and that's just not cool for a device is that supposed to be purpose-built for outdoor adventures. However, that is not something Garmin officially supports. By opening the device, you are doing so at your own risk. Also, there's no guarantee there will be a proprietary replacement battery available in 3, 5, 10 years from now. Sealed, non-replaceable batteries are just an all-around no-no for GPSrs in my book.
  9. It's not the battery life, it's the longevity of the GPSr. DPRovan is correct. I am rather passionate in my dislike of non-replaceable battery packs lol. The manufacturers, not the consumers, are the main primary winners with that design decision. In my experience, lithium ion batteries will usually run about 2-3 years at max capacity, and start to degrade quickly after that. At 5 years, the battery will have significantly less capacity than when new, which may become a reliability concern if you plan on using your GPS on long hikes/camping trips. Having to carry around a separate charging pack is not the same as being able to quickly pop in a fresh set of AA batteries. Trying to equate the two options is silly IMO... one is instant and convenient, the other requires either having to juggle an awkward charging pack with your GPS while operating it, or waiting an hour or more to charge the GPS before using. The biggest problem with non-replaceable batteries though is that they force you to upgrade your product in a relatively short period of time. Case in point, I purchased a Garmin Fenix 5 watch a few years ago (2017) for something like $300-400. The battery is already noticeably degraded... I get about half the runtime I did when new. That's just unacceptable for the price paid, and also incredibly annoying knowing that I will either have to ship it back to garmin to have them replace the battery, or fork over another $400-500 for a new version. No thanks!
  10. If I remember correctly, the 66i only comes with a built-in lithium battery, whereas the 66s supports AA batteries. IMO, being stuck with a built-in, non replaceable battery is a complete deal breaker. I would strongly lean towards the 66s, and if needed, get a spot communicator separately.
  11. To each their own. I find the simplicity of the older GPSrs refreshing. I still prefer my old PN-40 and Legend over my 64st. More to the OPs point, I am able to connect my old legend to MapSource using the serial cable connected through a serial-USB converter. I can transfer topo maps, waypoints, etc. I can't speak for EasyGPS or GPS Babel as I don't use either of them. I will say that the old Legend is not the greatest geocaching GPSr due to the lack of PQ support. I tend to use this GPS only for hiking, and the PN-40 for geocaching (as it natively supports PQs).
  12. The statements made by some of these companies are just disturbing... https://ligado5gfuture.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/02/comments_report_8.21.18-1.pdf
  13. These should be of help: https://www.gpsrchive.com/eTrex/eTrex x0x/Function eTrex 30x.html https://www.gpsrchive.com/eTrex/eTrex x0x/Files & Folders.html
  14. But those Garmins will also last many, many more years than a smartphone and the specs are plenty adequate. If you're talking about value, a Garmin/handheld will blow the socks off any smartphone.
  15. It's actually not as bad as you're making it out to be. I use the serial to usb converter below and it works great. You don't need to install anything extra, just plug it in to your computer and go. https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0753HBT12/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o04_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1 I use it with my old eTrex legend. As long as you have the proprietary cable that works with the old etrex, you are good to go.
  16. You missed my point with this comment. The point is, I don't want to be charging my device in the field, carrying around extra cables, and relying on all of that junk to work right. Having a device that allows me to change the batteries out whenever I want, with a variety of different options, gives me the most freedom to use it how I wish, and that's important. I completely understand the capabilities of a smartphone as I own one and have used it for caching and hiking before. I have experience with both a phone and a handheld, but greatly prefer the handheld for many reasons. You can call me biased, whatever, but I am just as free to share my advice to other cachers as anyone else here. I'm not exactly the first person in history to prefer a handheld over a smartphone either
  17. I still use my old legend from time to time. It works just fine. The memory is indeed tiny, but for quick local caches and hikes, there's nothing more I need it to do. If I'm going further out, or using it on a vacation/road trip, I'll bring my 64ST with much more memory and geocaching support. It is really cool though to be able to fire up your old GPSrs and be able to use them, almost 20 years after purchase. You can't really do that with a lot of electronics today.
  18. You are correct! Ironically enough I'm a millennial too...
  19. Far less than having to buy entirely new devices every 3-5 years, that's for dang sure. I use AA rechargeables... $6 investment that lasts me about 2-3 years. I can also swap them out at any time with AA alkalines, or AA lithiums, or AA battery packs if want to charge the batteries in the device. So many options. There is nothing good about sealed, non replaceable batteries for consumers. The only reason they exist is because having people buy all new devices every few years is highly profitable.
  20. I've cached and hiked with handhelds for 20 years, using many different models, and never once has one crashed on me or failed to do anything I wanted it to. I've had phones do all sorts of wonky behavior, including shutting down, apps crashing for no apparent reason, compass pointing in the wrong direction with no easy way of calibrating it, or charging ports all of a sudden not working. No thanks to smartphones for outdoor/hiking use! I will agree that phones have gotten a bit tougher over the years, but they are not built from the ground up to be used in rugged outdoor environments. They are built with a little bit of this, and a little bit of that.. they are built to try and satisfy a broad audience and as a result they are not particular great at anything. Handheld GPS units are designed to be used outdoors, handle drops, be used with gloves, etc. Pairing a phone with a case does help somewhat, but it doesn't change the fact that the internals of the phone are still weaker and less durable. That's one of the beautiful, and refreshing things about GPS... the technology is extremely consistent. I still have a Garmin etrex legend I bought in 2003. If I put new batteries in it, it will start right up and work like the day I bought it. That's a great value if you ask me. On the other hand, If I purchased a smartphone in 2003... oh wait. More to the point, I don't find myself needing or wanting constant innovation with GPS. I use them for a few purposes, and that's it. This isn't the type of device where constant "progress" is really warranted or necessary. That's a subjective viewpoint, obviously, but I would say there is a sizeable GPS user base that feels the same way as I do. Speak for yourself. This is a huge issue in my book, if not one of the things I dislike most about phones vs. handheld GPSrs. Sealed, non replaceable batteries do not benefit the consumer in any way shape or form. They are sealed in their for profitability. Replaceable batteries offer many benefits, and the ability to swap them out, at any time, with ones you can find at any convenience store, or rechargeables, or even battery packs sold by the manufacturer is incredibly powerful. There is no way you are going to change my mind on that, sorry. See I disagree, based on my own experience, but to each their own. I find the constantly connected nature of phones to be distracting outdoors, and it pulls me out of what I came out to enjoy in the first place. I never have that feeling with a handheld. I'll just leave it at that.
  21. I tend to be rather passionate about this topic Handheld GPS all the way for me, no question about it. I absolutely hate using a smartphone as a GPS... I know I'm in the minority regarding this, but I have used handheld units for 20 years now and you just can't beat them for reliability, durability, and longevity. They are also just more fun to use than a smartphone, and provide a much needed disconnect from everyday life where we use smartphones all the time. I like being able to just put it away and focus on the outdoors. Here are some big advantages to handheld GPSrs that I feel make this a no brainer decision: - Reliability... they just work! No app crashes, no weird compass issues, they just do what they are designed to do, each and every time. - Durability.. they are built to be in rugged outdoor environments and can handle dust, dirt, water and shocks. Phones are simply not built to these standards, I don't care what fancy case you put on it. - Redundancy... A big deal if you plan to venture into more remote areas. If you happen to drop the GPS and it breaks, you still have your phone to use as a backup and/or call for help. If you only go with a phone and it breaks, you're SOL. - Longevity... this is a big one for me. Smartphones these days tend to be built as disposable products, with non-replaceable batteries, designed to be replaced every 2-3 years. Handheld GPSrs can last decades. Pop in a fresh set of AA batteries and you're good to go. No battery degradation, no constant OS updates that end up making your device unusable after a few years (such is the case with smartphones). - Battery flexibility... With most GPSrs you can use AA alkaline, AA rechargeables, AA lithiums, or battery packs. Pick and choose whichever battery setup works best for you, and change it whenever you want. With smartphone, you've got one non-replaceable lithium battery that is constantly degrading from the day it was made. Should your battery get depleted while you are out, your only option is to use an external battery pack to charge it, and you better hope that battery pack works, and there are no connector problems (this has happened to me before). - Immersiveness... last but not least, a handheld allows you to separate your daily life routine from being outdoors and connecting with nature. I find I enjoy my hikes/geocaches much more when I can put my smartphone away. I could go on.... Buy a handheld and you won't regret it.
  22. You will love the PN-40 once you get familiar with the TOPO software. It has a steeper learning curve than most Garmin software, but it doesn't take long to figure out how to do things, and once you do, you will like all of the flexibility it has to offer. I still use my PN-40 as my primary GPS, and I've owned quite a few GPSrs over the years, including a number of modern Garmins. You can use any of the Delorme TOPO versions with the PN-40, and there's no annoying 'one device only' activation garbage. If you find a copy of Topo for sale on ebay or if you already happen to have one around, just install it on your computer and you are good to go. I actually just ordered another used PN-40 from ebay recently and it should be coming with Topo 10. If everything is in order, I may be able to sell you my old Topo 7 discs. I should know by next thursday.
  23. I use Basecamp for all of the map, waypoint, track, and geocache management on my garmins. Awesome software, and I strongly encourage trying it as you will probably like it... and yes it will allow you to mass delete the geocaches on the GPS if that's what you want. My take on this is that, yes, there should be a way to mass delete caches directly on the GPS, however, what I do is just leave whatever is on the GPS on the GPS, and then every so often use Basecamp to delete the old geocaches and load new ones. This will clean up all of the found caches since I filter out all 'found caches' in my pocket queries.
  24. It doesn't really matter how many apps there are, or what each app does. The basic problem is that you are putting all of your eggs in one basket and relying on one physical device for everything. If you are caching mostly in urban areas then sure, using a phone only is perfectly fine. Start doing more serious caches involving hikes, and redundancy becomes more important. Regardless, I actually used the app the other day for a quick cache in town. The dumb compass arrow had me going in the wrong direction. It was completely off. I closed the app and restarted and it worked fine. That sort of unreliability is pretty typical of most of my smartphone experiences though, and it doesn't inspire much confidence in using it as a primary geocache device
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