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Question About Automobile Mounted Gps


Thrak
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I've considered getting a dash mounted GPSr for my truck but I'm unsure how one goes about entering custom waypoints (geocaches) into such units. I would want to use the unit (in addition to it's normally advertised use) to autoroute to caches when I'm out caching but I wouldn't want to have to manually enter the coordinates.

 

Does anybody here use such a setup and, if so, can you tell me what you use, how it works for caching, how you get the cache info into the unit, and if you are happy with it?

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I am also seeking a auto style GPS. What I have found so far is that you cannot enter user waypoint in any Magellan Road mate, You can load then into the Garmin street pilots. I have not been able to find out if this is an option with the Automobile version of Tom TOm or the Lowrance automotive version.

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http://www.garmin.com/products/gpsmap276c/

I've had a Garmin GPSMAP276C for over a year that I've been very happy with.It will autoroute with the City Select or City Navigator software which must be purchased separately.I purchased mine with the automotive kit which included the data card,power cord with speaker and the auto mount.

My reason for this unit was it's flexabilty as I use it driving,boating & caching.It stores 3,000 waypoints & can be swithed to the marine mode when caching(out of the vehicle) or boating.Though I must admit I usually leave it in my vehicle & use my Rhino when caching.Unlike the StreetPilots the 276C has a battery for portable use.

Waypoints are downloaded to the unit with Mapsource software via USB connection & they can be split into 16 different categories.

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What I have found so far is that you cannot enter user waypoint in any Magellan Road mate, You can load then into the Garmin street pilots. I have not been able to find out if this is an option with the Automobile version of Tom TOm or the Lowrance automotive version.

I have been looking at the Magellan Roadmate for car navigation and hadn't even thought of the possibility you couldn't enter your own waypoints, if even manually. Looked on the Magellan site and I certainly don't see it in the pdf online manual. Assumption can certainly blind you sometimes. The Garmin's sound like they are much more flexible.

 

On the TOMTOM site I have seen references to being able to create your own POI's as of version 4.4 of the software. Perhaps someone who has TOMTOM can tell us if this is the way you would enter waypoints.

 

JDandDD

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My wife just gave me a Garmin 2720 for Christmas. You can enter waypoints (they're called Custom POIs on this unit) via a PC. The way that I do it is to create a .csv file from GSAK, then use Garmin's POI Loader to get them onto the 2720. The unit will then autoroute to any waypoint you select. You can also set proximity alerts to let you know when you pass within a certain distance of a waypoint.

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I am also seeking a auto style GPS. What I have found so far is that you cannot enter user waypoint in any Magellan Road mate, You can load then into the Garmin street pilots. I have not been able to find out if this is an option with the Automobile version of Tom TOm or the Lowrance automotive version.

This is interesting. We just read a manual and thought it said you COULD enter and edit waypoints with the Magellan Roadmate. Did we misunderstand?

Our Garmin Street Pilot III allowed us to mark and edit waypoints easily. This unit was stolen last week and we are looking to replace it, and this is our issue with choosing a new one.

None of the user manuals discuss this function, interestingly enough.

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Have you considered a Pocket PC. With voice prompted auto navigation programs like Mapopolis and gpxtosonar you can overlay all the waypoints from GSAK onto the street maps and route from one to the other. I've got 3500 in mine. The nwith gpxsonar you have paperless caching. Plus you can use the PPC for games, appt, phone lists, To Do lists, see position on 24K topo maps etc.

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I just purchased the new Garmin StreetPilot 7500 for my vehicle. I should be getting it next week! ;)

 

I bought it because I travel frequently during the spring and summer months, and I've wanted a unit just for the car, so I can easily locate restaurants, gas stations, and hotels when I'm traveling out of state. The unit is also equipped with traffic, weather, and XM Satellite Radio. Buying the unit, GXM 30 antenna, and bag to keep the unit in, I saved nearly $700 if I would've bought the unit alone at retail price, so I got a deal out of it.

 

I know the unit was designed with larger vehicles such as RV's, buses, etc. in mind, but I read a review that it can be used for those who like the larger screen size.

Edited by whitnallgps
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My wife just gave me a Garmin 2720 for Christmas.  You can enter waypoints (they're called Custom POIs on this unit) via a PC.  The way that I do it is to create a .csv file from GSAK, then use Garmin's POI Loader to get them onto the 2720.  The unit will then autoroute to any waypoint you select.  You can also set proximity alerts to let you know when you pass within a certain distance of a waypoint.

So as long as I had a laptop I could interface it with the unit and load caches from GSAK correct? I can't imagine lugging a PC out to my truck.....

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Have you considered a Pocket PC. With voice prompted auto navigation programs like Mapopolis and gpxtosonar you can overlay all the waypoints from GSAK onto the street maps and route from one to the other. I've got 3500 in mine. The nwith gpxsonar you have paperless caching. Plus you can use the PPC for games, appt, phone lists, To Do lists, see position on 24K topo maps etc.

We each have a PDA, but I don't think that would do it for us. The size, ease of use, processor speed, plus the visibility/screen size just don't compare to a SP.

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My wife just gave me a Garmin 2720 for Christmas.  You can enter waypoints (they're called Custom POIs on this unit) via a PC.  The way that I do it is to create a .csv file from GSAK, then use Garmin's POI Loader to get them onto the 2720.  The unit will then autoroute to any waypoint you select.  You can also set proximity alerts to let you know when you pass within a certain distance of a waypoint.

So as long as I had a laptop I could interface it with the unit and load caches from GSAK correct? I can't imagine lugging a PC out to my truck.....

I should have been more clear. What I described was how I download the waypoints onto the 2720 from my desktop PC. Once the unit is updated, there's no need to stay connected to the computer.

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I've considered getting a dash mounted GPSr for my truck but I'm unsure how one goes about entering custom waypoints (geocaches) into such units. I would want to use the unit (in addition to it's normally advertised use) to autoroute to caches when I'm out caching but I wouldn't want to have to manually enter the coordinates.

 

Does anybody here use such a setup and, if so, can you tell me what you use, how it works for caching, how you get the cache info into the unit, and if you are happy with it?

I have a Garmin 2610 that I use in my SUV and also on my motorcycle. For geocaching, I have a Magellan Explorist 500. When I go out geocaching, I load a set of waypoints for the sites into my Garmin and use it to route us to the general area of the cache (the parking lot, etc). Then, the Magellan is used to actually route us to the cache. It's very easy to set up the waypoints for either unit by getting a Pocket Query and then loading it into GSAK, which will then, export the appropriate files for the two units (and a file for that wonderful program, Cachemate, that I run on my Palm Tungsten T). Loading the information into either unit is pretty easy.

 

The Garmin unit is useless for caching in the field. It requires connection to a 12V source of power and otherwise, it just physically too big. Pretty much any GPS that has a large, easy-to-be read screen while driving, is going to be too big and unwieldly for field work. On the other hand, the Magellan works great in the field, but is too small and too hard to operate (pressing those tiny buttons) for serious use as a general GPS for automobile use. Once you get used to using a touch-screen in a vehicle, you won't be satisified with anything else.

 

The bottom line is that you really need one of each type units. If you can only afford one GPS, then obviously, you're going to have to go with a handheld unit. However, be aware that for autorouting in a vehicle, it lacks a lot of the features that a dedicated "vehicle" unit has. Also, the Points-Of-Interest database is going to be significantly smaller than on a "vehicle" type unit.

Edited by Guitar4Him
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Another StreetPilot 2610 user here. I love mine. I use it to get me to the cache location and then the hand held out in the woods.

 

Regarding using GSAK with the 2610 - currently the two do not talk for some reason so what I do is export the GPX file from GSAK and then use MapSource to transfer the waypoints to the 2610. If I could ever do without my 2610 long enough I'd send it up to Robert so he can work with it enough so that GSAK can communicate with it.

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The Garmin Quest is automobile-mounted primarily, has full auto-routing and other premium features, a large, easy-to-read display, and is small enough to fit in your pocket and is easy to carry around (and the battery's good for about 20 hours). You can enter new waypoints on the fly by moving a pointer around, you can download cache waypoint info (both .loc and .gpx formats) from this site directly into the software it comes with (and hence into your receiver), and it has both road-following and direct-to-point-arrow modes. The only limitation is it doesn't have a built-in compass so the arrow-to-waypoint pointer requires that you be walking so it can measure your direction and speed. I've yet to take it on cache hunts (it was an Xmas gift and weather's not good this time of year) but my brother-in-law's been caching with his for years and swears by it.

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I'll second the vote for the Quest. At about $300 with City Select maps included, it is a steel. It voice prompts while in the car through its cigarette adaptor, and can easily be moved between vehicles and used for caching. I got one for my daughter for christmas and she loves it. The screen is about the size of the 60C/76C units, so that is a limitation, but the portablity and ability to use it as a hand-held is a big plus.

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