Jump to content

Garmin Vs. Magellan


we_scuba2
Followers 0

Recommended Posts

Ready to buy a GPS. I really like the eXplorist XL but nobody is saying much about it. I like the large display.

I would love to hear your thoughts on which unit to purchase. In other words see if I can be talked out of an eXplorist XL. I am ready to spend $500 to get the best I can.

 

Thanks to all

Link to comment
Ready to buy a GPS. I really like the eXplorist XL but nobody is saying much about it. I like the large display.

I would love to hear your thoughts on which unit to purchase. In other words see if I can be talked out of an eXplorist XL. I am ready to spend $500 to get the best I can.

 

Thanks to all

Wht fewatures do you want, the XL is that largest and may be the best on of the bunch for drivng because of the large screen. If you like the XL just buy the XL. The 500 and 600 are smaller the 600 has the magnetic compass whick not really needed for geocaching. The Magellan also have expancable memory which can be handy if you travel a lot and don't want to take time to change maps. The Garmin 76 floats and has more memory than the 60.

The new X series fronm garmin have expandable memory but you can not load waypoints onto the card.

Link to comment

I have had my XL for about 5 weeks and have used it for caching and long distance travel from KY to FLA. I have loaded most of the SE US onto the SD card. I use the Magellan Geocaching software to download cache information and I have found this to be almost paperless caching. I am very pleased with the XL and am looking foward to adding TOPO maps to my unit.

Link to comment

Agree with FishDog. FishDog?? :)

 

Anyway I have an XL for about a month. I really like it. Great screen. Very bright and readable when used when driving. Good for geocaching too. Shows all your caches as an easily viewable box on the screen. Nice alerts when getting driving directions. 12 satellites plus 2 dedicated WAAS channels. Waterproof for those "caching in the rain" moments. Already had a couple of those and I'm a newbie to this sport. I REALLY like the SD card. You can load a LARGE map into a 1G card. Good for east coast travel. Information displayed on the screen is configurable. Pretty decent battery life too. Great reception in the car, great reception in the woods. However, it's winter here so no leaves on trees to attenuate the satellite signals.

 

Bought a great car mount too.

 

Also, you can get sub $400 prices.

 

Mapsend software is probably a necessity and an added expense but it works very well for me.

 

Only complaint so far is the power cable design. Pretty lame. There is not good setup for running it off of the car power. You need the cable it came with plus the car adapter which plugs into the supplied cable. Kind of a kluge. Oh, and customer service is S L O W !! Had a couple of questions and it took days for anyone to even acknowledge my email. 90 minutes on hold too before I gave up on my phone attempt too.

 

But, so far, I'd say I made a great purchase. Good luck!

Link to comment

I think that the Magellan hardware (i.e., the GPSr) is quite good, and JohnnyVegas makes a good point that the larger size of the XL screen is a plus for driving. However, the Magellan autorouting software is pretty basic compared to the Garmin autorouting capabilities. Some of the differences are discussed in this thread.

Link to comment

Magellan came out with the XL right after I bought my 500, and when I first saw it, I kinda wished I'd waited for it. The bigger screen looks like it makes things much easier to read, especially for my aging eyes.

 

Of course, when I first bought the 500, I wasn't doing geocaching. Now that I am, I REALLY like the fact that I can pretty much hold the 500 in the palm of my hand so discretely that nosey muggles can't see it.

 

I don't think that would be possible with the XL.

Link to comment

Well, if service is a consideration then think about this. I bought an eXplorist 600 and I doubt that I will ever buy another Magellan product again...

 

E-Mailed Magellan Tech Support and it took 5 working days to get a response (I'm being nice and excluding the weekends in here.)

Called Magellan Tech Support and set up for call back..it took 6 working days for a response.

Called Magellan Tech Support and decided to wait it out, the first time their system disconnected me after one hour.

Called Magellan Tech Support and decided to wait it out..again...finally spoke with a live technician (just to check to see where my unit was in their system by this point) after 1 hour and 37 minutes.

 

Just as a test, I called Garmin Tech Support and spoke with a live technician after being on hold for 9 minutes and 42 seconds (I clocked it.)

 

Doc

Edited by docdigit
Link to comment

I have the Garmin Vista C and love it. It is very durable.

 

My friend has the Garmin 60CS and her GPSr is very durable.

 

However, if something were to go wrong with either unit, I know Garmin has excellent service and that is a plus.

 

I also love the way the Garmin City Select software autoroutes. :laughing:

 

The 76CS is a bit larger unit, but if you need that extra memory because you travel a lot, frequently, that would be an excellent unit to purchase.

Link to comment
Well, if service is a consideration then think about this. I bought an eXplorist 600 and I doubt that I will ever buy another Magellan product again...

I got an XL for Christmas along with the Topo 3D. I use the GPS for recreation so the actual roads don't matter to me, but the topo is really important. When I went to load the 3D the first of 3 discs was empty. I've been trying since December 24th to get it working and Magellan customer support is worse than Doc stated. I now own a very nice GPS and no basemap or software for it. I sold a perfectly good Garmin and I'm having serious regrets.

Link to comment

It occurs to me that Magellan may be a victim of their own success. Much like Dell computer before they became one of the largest manufacturers of cpu's their customer service was outstanding. With the increased sales, and the outsourcing of tech support to India, the Phillipines and some island off the coast of central america inhabitated by natives with no shirts, their customer service now sux. With all of the sales they have had on the new Explorist's and issues with software, they are probably completely overwhelmed.

 

A better question is: how was their service before the intro? And: let's see how Garmin does after their sales (too late for xmas-really bad marketing there) pick up on the new lines.

 

BTW, I agree with dinobalz with the time on hold. One and a half hours and no response is unacceptable.

Link to comment
It occurs to me that Magellan may be a victim of their own success.

 

I might agree with that statement but ask your self this question, "Why is their customer support so busy?" I am hearing rumours that they sent out a really bad batch of product for the Christmas season because they were rushed to get it out (including things like not only my missing battery and non-charging unit, but missing software, etc.)

So, as I asked in another thread a while back, is their product so screwed up that their customer support can't get unburied or are they so understaffed that they can't keep up (or both?) Either way they have a SERIOUS problem. On the one hand, they have a major quality/production and MANAGEMENT issue and they need to review their system. On the other they have a major MANAGEMENT issue and they need to review their system.

I take care of these kinds of problems for a living and can tell you that they need to hire a couple of experts in my field (I'm not available at the moment) if they want to be in business two years from now.

 

Doc

Link to comment

Many of us have wondered why Magellan customer/tech support has taken such a nosedive. A year or two ago, the email responses were on the slow side (sometimes taking a few days to get back to you), but the phone support was good. Repair turnaround was great, people reported getting their units back with a week of sending them out--pretty good when you consider that half that time was needed for shipping.

 

Now things seem to be in shambles. Oldtrucks summarizes nicely by saying he's got a nice GPS and no support to address his problems. If you're lucky enough to not need corporate backup, things should be pretty good. If you need repairs, advice, firmware upgrades...dust off your frustration coping strategies.

 

Oldtrucks, if you need a copy of the basemap you may find it at the Underground Explorist site. They appear to be compressed in .rar format, with which I am not familiar. From what I could tell, one needs to buy a compression/decompression utility capable of handling the format.

 

I'd suggest that those who are having difficulty getting your problems resolved write to higher-ups in the corporate chain, the Better Business Bureau, or other places that migh bring some inspiration to fix the Big Problem.

Link to comment

Re: Embra...

Complaining higher...forget it...I sent letter to the CEO at Thales...never a reponse. As for dealing Mr. Castro in Tech Support/Repair that was a total waste when my MeriPlat went back and they wanted to charge me for the same thing that they had

"corrected" on a previous return...I posted this here back..a search will bring it up. Their products seems to be have problems more so now.. I am very doubtful that I would ever give them any more of my $$ -since I bought Mapend, MeriPlat, cables etc..

If people keep buying the stuff, they have no reason to change their ways...

Edited by Dirtnapper
Link to comment

About a month and a half ago the locking clip on my explorist cable broke off, I emailed Magellan and told them the problem. Within 24hrs I had a return email with a rma, but I was supposed to send the old cable in. I emailed them back that I needed the cable to charge the unit as I used it everyday. The next morning I had a email asking for a copy of my sales reciept, I sent a copy of the reciept and about 3 days later I had a new cable now I think that was pretty good service.

Link to comment

It's nice to know that there are SOME success stories out there. I did notice that Thales is listed on the London exchange, I'm wondering if a word to the right Financial rag might not get some interest going and some changes made? I've noticed that with some large corporations it takes a concern over their quarterly dividends to get them to move.

 

Doc

Link to comment

Having delt with Garmin and Magellan as a dealer for many years and havening sent products back for customers for repairs, I have found both Garmin and Magellan to be very good in dealing with customer problems, I have seen cases in which there have been problems with both companies, but these were very few indeed. Both companies are run by humans and humans are not perfect.

 

A lot of the turn around time with repairs for any company has to do with the work load of the service dept at a given time. There are days when there may be very few repairs on the shelves, then there may be days when there might be a weeks worth of work piled up. This also effects e-mail responces.

 

Now I know of several very popular sunglass companies that do not care about there customers. These companies I will not do bussiness with.

Link to comment
I have seen cases in which there have been problems with both companies, but these were very few indeed.

 

And I might believe that, but I'm still waiting to see the same kind of forum posts about Garmin that I've seen about Magellan concerning service. No company or person or group of people is perfect (I know that I'm not) but is that the point? No company, person or group of people has to be THIS bad either. I have honestly never encountered another product of any kind where I have seen such a lack of timely customer service as I have seen from Thales (sunglass companies not withstanding.) Maybe I don't get out enough or buy enough things? If that's the case though, I wonder where my paychecks keep going?

My belief is that I have made a terrible mistake in purchasing a Magellan unit. I will not purchase another one based upon this experience. I will tell everyone I know about this experience (that is the danger that ANY company must face when they have a problem such as this that results in a negative customer experience.) I was asked recently if there was anything that could change my mind about Thales (i.e. could I be bought off?) My response to that person was that you cannot remove a negative emotional experience. You might attempt to replace it with a positive one but can anyone seriously see Thales doing THAT in the near future?

 

Edit: I just want to add, that I find it interesting that people ARE e-mailing me to find out "the rest of the story". Not a pretty picture Magellan/Thales...not a pretty picture...

 

Doc

Edited by docdigit
Link to comment

The post in that tread started out covering the use on the Magellan Geocache manager. I use the geocahe manager with my explorist 500 and I have not had any problems with it.

 

A lot of the post are covering using GSAK with the Explorist, THis is not an easy task, but it is not Magellans job to make their products work with third party software.

Link to comment
doc: Not to be a pita, but how extensive is your experience with the equipment

 

I will admit that I'm fairly new to the equipment, but I'm not sure what that has to do with their service? If I had done something to 'break' the unit, I could see your point, but since the unit came without a battery and then wouldn't charge it when I bought one separtely (not wanting to have to wait for an RMA...what a laugh now), I''m not sure where you are going with your question?

 

The post in that tread started out covering the use on the Magellan Geocache manager

 

That's very true, which is why I stated "look near the bottom", the point being there are others out there that are having issues with Magellan/Thales service as well.

 

While a magazine may give a particular brand or unit a high rating, I am more interested in what users have to say about function and service. I bought the unit originally because of the Magellan name and functionallity. The service issue has led me to believe that I have made a serious error. Thales has a problem, I made a mistake.

Doc

Edited by docdigit
Link to comment

but since the unit came without a battery and then wouldn't charge it when I bought one separtely (not wanting to have to wait for an RMA...what a laugh now

 

It is always good to check the return policy of the retailer, obviously opened goods should never be accepted as new. I run into this all the time at office supply retailers with printer toner cartridges, people put the old cartridge back in the box and return it to the retailer and sure enough someone buys it as a new cartridge.

 

If the unit was to come with a battery, I would not have accepted.

 

You may still be able to return the unit now, you should check on it.

Link to comment
It is always good to check the return policy of the retailer, obviously opened goods should never be accepted as new.

That was an interesting leap to a conclusion...the box was sealed. I suppose the retailer COULD have re-sealed it, but with all of the other problems that Thales is having (bad software, boxes without any software, etc.), I doubt it.

 

If the unit was to come with a battery, I would not have accepted.

If I hadn't decided to wait several weeks to open it as a Christmas present I might not have anticipated it so badly and agree with you. As it was, I decided to BUY a new battery on MY OWN dollar and put it in. HOWEVER, the retailer was made aware of the situation immediately and has it on record.

 

You may still be able to return the unit now, you should check on it.

I get the feeling that you think I'm some kind of an idiot? I admit, I made a mistake, I bought the thing in the first place (a mistake that Thales/Magellan can be sure that I will NEVER make again.) The unit has already been returned to Thales. If you would like the entire story e-mail me and I will be happy to share it with you. It is a very long tale and as I have already stated, I don't want to put it into the forums (others have already e-mailed me for it and commented back to me that they can't believe I had to go through this.)

 

Doc

Link to comment

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
Followers 0
×
×
  • Create New...