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3 Hawks

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Everything posted by 3 Hawks

  1. Thanks for your input. Garmin wouldn't have to spend anything on R&D since they already have the requested and expected functions in their other units. The only new features are the "paperless" feature and the "rock-n-roll" interface. If Garmin was not targeting geocachers then why the "geocaching mode?" If you want to talk about business models, we could go on all day. What it comes down to is that when a company finds features that work, why would you eliminate those features? That would not be a very wise business model. OK...Why doesn't someone start an "I Love My Colorado" thread so we can all hear about the wonderful features and improved functionality of the Colorado?
  2. Averaging has come in handy a few times while in steep valleys with heavy tree cover. Obtaining and holding a signal can be a real challenge. I let my Vista HCx sit and average about 500 samples on three different days. Then I took those three averages and averaged them to obtain an average of the averages. Now how long would it have taken me to individually mark 1,500 samples?? I don't have a problem with others having an opinion on the Colorado. If they think the Colorado is the cat's meow, then they can go right ahead skipping down the trail in utter bliss. I just don't appreciate people minimizing the concerns of others as being irrelevant when many of the issues are glaring and obvious. BTW, I really appreciate all the information and insight you have been able to provide. The nice thing about a dialogue like this is that people can air all of the strengths and weaknesses of the system so that others can make an informed decision on weather to purchase a Colorado.
  3. Do you have any link to the advertisement? Look on the back cover of this month's Back Packer Magazine. I'm at work right now, but I'd be more than happy to post the entire ad text. In summary, the add talks about how easy it is to load waypoints, POI's, tracks, and geocaches. The ad talks about how easy it is to use the interface and the picture of the 400t is a Topo image with elevation text. It opens with something to the extent that the Colorado is intended for the serious user.
  4. I have an eTrex Vista HCx and I love it. I've never had any issues and it has only "hung-up" once during a cold start-up. Someone who has never used an eTrex will have to learn how to navigate on the unit, but that is to be expected. My HCx came with the Topo maps in the box and I've not even bothered to get the Navigator NT street maps. Loading caches onto the HCx is a breeze. Step one: Load the free Garmin Communicator application found on gc.com. Step two: Hook up your GPSr to your computer with the USB cable. Step three: Locate a cache you want to load and hit the "send to GPSr" tab either on the specific cache page or from the generated list. The communicator application will open and you click the "send to GPSr" tab. Two seconds later, the cache is loaded. If you want to load 250 caches at once (under a minute), you will need to be a Premium member to generate pocket queries and you will have to use other applications like Easy GPS (free through gc.com) or GSAK (free to a point but spending $25.00 makes it a lot easier to use). IMHO, you can't go wrong with a 60 or a Vista HCx. Good luck with your selection!!
  5. Anders, Read SB's post again. SB is saying "I see no problem at all." SB is making excuses, marginalizing the impact of the performance issues, and rationalizing poor market delivery. I don't think there is anyone who thinks Garmin won't improve the Colorado platform. From my read of the forums, and even your posts, some of the work-arounds may not be "short-term" since nobody even knows the Colorado's intended performance specs. Now I know why the manual is so vague. It is easy to deny performance delivery when the specs are not published. I'm not expecting the Colorado to do everything for me since it was not made specifically for me. I'm saying, don't make excuses for Garmin and don't settle for anything less than the highest level of quality and performance.
  6. If we don't complain about substandard performance then that is all we can expect in the future. Once a company gets a signal that perfection is not an expectation, then quality goes out the window. We don't expect one GPSr that can do everything. We only expect that which is brought to market to actually perform as advertised. Innovation for the sake of innovation is nice, but to sacrifice functionality for that end is unacceptable in any industry. With that said, I’m sure Garmin is encouraged to see some people making excuses and marginalizing the problems for them. At what price would the “non-issues” become and issues for those who think nothing is wrong with the Colorado and that Garmin should get a “well at least you tried hard” and passed for “good” effort??
  7. I actually just responded to a very seasoned cacher who posted on another thread that the Colorado works just as good as the older Garmins in regards to many of the features. The poster actually felt loading caches as both waypoints and as a GPX file is acceptable. I have to agree with you that this platform is NOT geocaching friendly. You have to jump through 10 hoops just to do what Vista HCx can do. Sure you don't have the cache description on an HCx, but an HCx and a basic PDA combo are half the price. Now if you load the caches as POI's, then you have another half dozen hoops.
  8. But that's not way it is supposed to work. I wish people would stop making excuses for poor initial performance issues. Work arounds don't make up for flaws. When you shell out this kind of cache for a high end piece of equipment, you expect high end performance. If I want older Garmin unit performance, I'll buy an older Garmin. Wait....I already have two older Garmins that are more functional than the initial version of the Colorado. What about the long load and screen update times? Once they offer something better than the old, or get the Colorado up to speed, then I will think about forking out $500-$600.
  9. Pardon me, but it seems like you have made a big leap from "there is not a future software update to increase the 2025 map set limitation" to "update support for the 60/76C(S)x will taper off to zero."
  10. I assume you mean accuracy since precision is the ability to produce the same result even it that result is not accurate. My blue eTrex still gets out in the field from time to time and it still gets me to the cache most of the time. You have to remember that even the most accurate and precise GPSr will only take you to a specific point. The person hiding the cache may have had poor reception when marking the posted coords. Their accuracy may have been off by 50 feet. Now if your blue eTrex is showing 20 feet of accuracy, then you have a under tree cover. I usually had about 20 foot accuracy in the summer and that is usually acceptable. 12-20 feet of accuracy is about the best you can hope for in the summer time. From time to time, I'd even obtain an exceptional lock with 10 feet of accuracy. Once again, that often works against you because you never know how accurate the coords are in the first place. The blue eTrex Legend works best when you are moving at or above 3MPH. Once you slow down, it will start jumping around. When you stop moving, the arrow is of no use. The eTrex also has lag issues when in heavy tree cover and you will often overshoot your intended target. My HCx will usually hold a better lock that the basic Legend under all conditions. When in the clear, my Legend HCx will show about 10 feet of accuracy. I tend to get worse reception after 6pm because the sats tend to track lower to the horizon in relation to my location. In any event, I rarely use my GPSr to get me the last 50 feet in the first place. One of the biggest problems with new cachers is that they rely too much on their GPSr and end up caching with tunnel vision. We've all done it and it takes a while to break the habit. Rarely, will you find a cache where your GPSr zeros out. I usually, pick a target on my approach and use that as a starting point.
  11. Yes! I only had problems when the canopy was VERY heavy.
  12. I've cached in every type of weather for out part of the country, Milwaukee, WI. Three weeks ago, I was caching less than 5 miles from an on the ground tornado. It was about 65 degrees that day. There was a lot of ground fog from rapidly melting snow, frogs were stirring from their hybernation, and severe storms were popping up all around me. Storm sirens were blaring all around me, but I kept on caching because I could see the tornado and it was moving away from me. I was safer caching than the fools driving straight into the storm. It was a very odd experience. Last weekend, I started caching at 5:00am. We had 10 inches of fresh snow and the temperature was minus 4 degrees and about minus 20 with the windchill. I cached until 5:20pm and the temp had dropped to minus 7 with a minus 29 degree windchill. I, for one, enjoy winter caching. As long as you dress accordingly (many layers), stay warm, and stay dry, you should be OK. I just love caching after a good snow fall. You have virgin snow with no tracks to throw you off. Everything is so quiet and peaceful and some of the views are breathtaking this time of year. The snow and ice make locating even the easiest micro-in-the-woods hide nearly impossible at times, but I get a real sense of satisfaction out of the experience.
  13. But what happens when the local stores and restaurants start selling nothing but spinach, tofu, and eggplant and you can't just go to the grocery store anymore to get the food you like? Instead you have spend hours researching grocery stores and drive miles out of your way to find a steak. I'm from the land of Edward Theodore Gein. I'll just let the steak drive to me.
  14. Are those waypoints or geocaches? They show up under both geocaches and waypoints. When I view them as geocaches I can see the description, logs, etc. Right. Somehow they got loaded as waypoints and geocaches. Geocaches don't show up on the map page but waypoints do, so I'm guessing what you are seeing is the waypoints on the screen. If you delete all of the waypoints from the waypoint manager I'm guessing they'll not show up on the map. GO$Rs Killjoy!!
  15. For those watching this thread, take a look at the "Colorado 300/400 manual is now out" thread for breaking news on the topic of GPX file exports. Someone seems to have made a breakthrough!!
  16. Are those waypoints or geocaches? They show up under both geocaches and waypoints. When I view them as geocaches I can see the description, logs, etc. So you did not use GSAK?? Was your PQ zipped or unzipped? I see the names above the icons are the GC numbers. I wonder if there would be any way to show the cache name instead of the GC number on the map. Could GSAK be used to reconfigure the GPX file to show the name and then the file could be recompiled back into a GPX file for export to the unit. Can you zoom out a little further to show more caches and post the shot?? You may have just stumbled across something here. We are so use to using GSAK or other loading software that we may have simply overlooked the obvious. How many caches did you load? How long does it take you to load up a description page? How long does it take you to pull up the next page?
  17. Garmin's is put together ok, retainers set and all, just goin' a little fast, plenty of air left to slow down. Magellan on the other hand, put all the loads at the back, used up all their air, and the hind end is cresting that hill a mile back! Hang on, or jump off, either way it's gonna hurt. $$$ WASSless near Seattle Norm Now if my brother, a Conductor, was only here. He'd have a great comeback. All I can think of is I hope Garmin doesn't bust a knuckle or throw a pin.
  18. Please explain: The geocaches don't show on the maps. There is no Found button that logs into a calander. Road name do not show. No waypoint averaging when marking a new waypoint for hides. Waypoint symbols aren’t visible in list views Geocaches don't show up in "Recent Finds" list. 80' is the smallest scale viewable. I think people are probably talking about the ability to read the cache data from a gpx file directly on the Colorado. That is a big stop forward especially if you think the issues above are going to be resolved by some firmware updates over the next several months. GO$Rs If you don't mind standing around for 5 minutes while the thing loads up the cache data. Now if you only load a single cache GPX file, then maybe the Colorado will be your cup of tea. The larger the GPX file, the slower the performance. Why?? Someone posted a theory in another thread that the Colorado does not simply read only the information for a selected cache; it reads the whole darn GPX file since it is loaded and stored as a single file. Say your GPX file is 2500 caches with descriptions, hints, and logs. That is a lot of pages. When you try to pull up the description for a specific cache, it opens up the whole darn 15,000 page file and then has to locate the specific page you are requesting. Now you want to view page two of the cache description. Just because you were able to pull up the first page, that doesn't mean the second page is the next page in this massive data base. The unit then has to shuffle through the pages until it finds page two. I wonder if CN NT is working the same way on the Colorado in that everytime it redraws a map it redraws the whole map. This is only a theory posted in these threads, but it might explain the lethargic performance and maybe even some of the power drain issues. This might also explain why the cache icons are not displaying since the unit only sees a massive GPX file and not individual geocaches.
  19. ....and you only get to see the ONE blue stick pin for the cache to which you are navigating. You may have driven 10 miles to go 1.5 miles as the crow flies and you may have driven straight past 5 other caches along the way. Unfortunatley, you will not know that because all of the other geocaches won't show on the map overlay. After finding this cache, you can pull up the menu of closest caches to your current location. You select a cache and a blue pin will show up on the overlay for that cache. Back and forth you will go, unless you have already pre-routed your caching adventure and know the proper order in which to select the caches. Once again, no other icons for any other caches will show up unless you have loaded your caches as custon POI's and/or unless you manually input waypoints with the treasure chest icon. There is a POI limit of 1,000 and you are essentially bypassing the intended use of the geocaching mode features. You have to still load in the GPX file to view the cache descriptions, hints, and logs but you have to do a second download to create and load the custon POI's. You actually end up loading the same coords twice just to work around the limitations. The manually entered waypoints are just coords and a name with a selected icon, just like the old eTrex Legend. I'm sure the Magellan folks are loving this since the Triton release was described as a "train wreck."
  20. As it currently stands, the Vista HXc is far more functional than the Colorado. Caches show up on the map overlays in the HCx. You can mark caches as found on the HCx. The HCx has the "Find Next" function. The start up time of the HCx is faster. The maps on the HCx refresh faster. You can average coords on an HCx. You can see the street names on the HCx. The HCx is far less expensive. I could go on, and on, and on........ I just use standard batteries I purchase from Gander Mountain for about 38 cents each. I loaded in a fresh set this last Saturday and cached from 5:00am (dark) to 5:20pm (dark) in near to below zero conditions. My backlighting was employed at least 3 hours. I then cached for another 6 hours on Sunday and three more hours on Monday before changing the batteries before they even went dead. That's about 21 hours of operation time for under 80 cents. The Colorado lets you view the cache descriptions, hints, and logs on a larger, but duller, screen. This sounds like one expensive, cumbersome, rather limited PDA. The Colorado is still a baby and has a lot of growth ahead of it before it can compete with the big boys and girls.
  21. I found my first 1,500 caches with a standard blue eTrex Legend. Under most environments and conditions, the Legend maintained acceptable reception. In very heavy tree cover, I'd lose reception from time to time and/or experience up to 120 foot accuracy issues. If you put the unit in your coat pocket, you will lose reception. If you bend over the unit, you will lose reception. Reacquiring in heavy cover can be an adventure and I often resorted to the hold the unit over your head and pray method. With WAAS enabled, you will generally hold a good lock and the unit will get you withing 10-15 feet of your target. The Legend HCx or the Vista HCx give you far more functionality, expanded memory, color displays, and excellent signal locks and my Vista HCx has far better battery performance. I walk around with my Vista HCx under my heavy winter coat and I've never lost reception.
  22. I dislike spinich, tofu, and eggplant. Therefore, I don't eat spinich, tofu, or eggplant. Those who like the stuff can have all of it they want. Then again, maybe I've just not been exposed to the proper preparation and/or presentation of these items. Luckily, there is enough variety of other items available to keep me healthy and happy.
  23. Nope, in the manual it specifically says that you can choose from preloaded backgrounds or "load your own". Trouble is it doesn't say how. I've tried to choose an image in "picture viewer, but that's not an option apparently. Gee, you are demanding!! Just because a company advertises that a product will do something, doesn't mean one should actually expect the product to deliver or that the company should actually provide clear instruction on how to accomplish a task. What world are you from???
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