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At Last, A Solution For 'tunnel' Problem On X Series Garmins


Kenjobi
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The problem whereby the x series Garmins do not always regain a fix after losing GPS signals may have been solved in the latest GPS firmware patch (version 2.5) on the 60CSx.

 

It does not seem possible to download this patch directly from the Gamin website, however, if you use their WebUpdater software, it will install the new patch although you may have to run it twice. You can download WebUpdater here:

 

WebUpdater

 

To find out what version of GPS firmware you are running select Menu, Menu, Setup, Enter, System, Enter, Menu, Software Version, Enter. Both the unit software and the GPS firmware are listed. If you have don't have GPS version 2.5, then it is worth updating (The versions may be different on the 76 series and I've not been able to test this).

 

Once the WebUpdater has done it's thing, you should see GPS software version 2.5.

 

Upon restart, it appears that the unit has no idea where it is or what time it is so it takes a little while with a good clear view of the sky before it gets itself in order.

 

I've run many tests to try and get the unit to not regain a fix after losing all GPS signals and it has never failed. One time it did appear that it was not going to work but it seems now that the unit recognises the condition and resets the GPS hardware itself rather than you having to do this.

 

Note that this so called 'tunnel' problem only ever occurred if you had WAAS/EGNOS enabled.

 

Added Edit

 

I notice there's more info about the GPS firmware version with similar instructions on this thread:

http://forums.Groundspeak.com/GC/index.php?showtopic=132173

Edited by Kenjobi
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The OP is correct about the updater "confusing" the GPS as to date and time. I found that to be true and posted this in another thread on updating to GPS software 2.50:

After the update to 2.50 I was checking to see if everything on my 60CSx was still working correctly and I noticed the displayed time on the altimeter screen (actually on any screen) was "Sep '04." Until I went outside to get satellite lock, the time wasn't set. It immediately aquired the correct time and date from the GPS network.
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The problem whereby the x series Garmins do not always regain a fix after losing GPS signals may have been solved in the latest GPS firmware patch (version 2.5) on the 60CSx.

 

That's encouraging news! I downloaded 2.5 yesterday, but haven't had a chance to run the "tunnel test" yet; will do that today, at a location that has consistantly failed in the past.

 

I didn't look for the date problem; it seems ok now. (Did notice the initial acquisition seemed to take longer).

 

Frustrating thing is WAAS 35 still initially shows up in it's original location! Seems like that should have been an easy fix, either in SW 2.7 or GPS SW 2.5 (whichever one handles this). It's been at the new location for over a month now. (Not too critical for me, but would be a big help to people in the east.)

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That's encouraging news! I downloaded 2.5 yesterday, but haven't had a chance to run the "tunnel test" yet; will do that today, at a location that has consistantly failed in the past.

 

I didn't look for the date problem; it seems ok now. (Did notice the initial acquisition seemed to take longer).

 

Frustrating thing is WAAS 35 still initially shows up in it's original location! Seems like that should have been an easy fix, either in SW 2.7 or GPS SW 2.5 (whichever one handles this). It's been at the new location for over a month now. (Not too critical for me, but would be a big help to people in the east.)

 

Hertzog - Somewhere a couple of months ago I read that AFTER 35 reached it's new position that it would take 2 months for it to be available. Supposedly testing and tweaking the location for 2 months. That would push it's availability date to the end of May or 1st of June.

Edited by planewood
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Sorry to burst y'all's bubbles, but my 60Cx failed the "tunnel test" with Firmware 2.70 and GPS SW 2.50! I ride the subway to and from work every day.

Yes, I got the same results myself, repeating my previous tests, but with interesting variations:

 

When I went into the tunnel it completely lost all satellites, picked them up again as soon as I came out, then lost everything a short time later; but it was a different time than before; on two prevous occasions it had lost track (going north) exactly 1.3 miles down the road; this time it lost track only 0.4 miles down the road. This of course could be just a random variation, but the interesting thing this time was:

 

when I loaded the track data into Mapsource I found that when it lost satellite reception upon entering the tunnel it locked onto the road. This is a mode I had never encountered or heard mentioned before.

 

So, they haven't fixed the tunnel problem, but they have definitely changed some of the algorithms.

 

UPDATE: I reviewed some of my previous tracklogs, and can see clear indications of the "snap to road" feature when satellite reception is lost, so now I have to say I don't see any clear indication that GPS SW 2.5 has any changes!

Edited by Hertzog
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Hertzog - Somewhere a couple of months ago I read that AFTER 35 reached it's new position that it would take 2 months for it to be available. Supposedly testing and tweaking the location for 2 months. That would push it's availability date to the end of May or 1st of June.

35 hasn't been available for ranging data, but has been for the differential correction data, even during the move. Problem is that the SiRF models reject its data if it is not where they think it is. Whenever they are turned on or GPS operation is restarted they set the almanac data to the old position and reject the differential correction data. If they can see another WAAS bird such as 47 they will update the almanac for 35 and then will use 35's data (but since they already see another WAAS satellite seeing 35 doesn't do a lot).

 

During the move it wouldn't have been practical to change the data for 35, but now that it is in its final location it would have made sense for them to have updated the almanac data for 35, but they didn't.

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I just tried GOT GPS's tunnel test...placing the 60CSx into the fridge for a few minutes.

 

Both times I tried this the unit noted loss of signal, but within seconds of removing it from the fridge, I had signal again, WAAS enabled.

 

My unit appears to be working OK...

 

EDIT: Firmware 2.70, GPS SW 2.50

Edited by 8mmag
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I just tried GOT GPS's tunnel test...placing the 60CSx into the fridge for a few minutes.

 

Both times I tried this the unit noted loss of signal, but within seconds of removing it from the fridge, I had signal again, WAAS enabled.

 

My unit appears to be working OK...

 

EDIT: Firmware 2.70, GPS SW 2.50

 

Since the tunnel problem is very likely a variation of the well known SiRF jet-lag issue, your test is not representative. You would have to put the 60cxs in the fridge, then transport the fridge a mile away and then take it out.

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I guess that's going to have to wait until my middle linebacker son gets home from college next week then!

 

What you're suggesting though is if signal is lost in heavy canopy while hiking or hunting, and the movement between loss and (possible?) reacquisition of SV signal is say, only a couple hundred yards, the unit would function properly, as it seemed to in my invalid test?

 

I guess I didn't understand it was related to BOTH signal loss & distance travelled before re-acquisition...

 

 

I just tried GOT GPS's tunnel test...placing the 60CSx into the fridge for a few minutes.

 

Both times I tried this the unit noted loss of signal, but within seconds of removing it from the fridge, I had signal again, WAAS enabled.

 

My unit appears to be working OK...

 

EDIT: Firmware 2.70, GPS SW 2.50

 

Since the tunnel problem is very likely a variation of the well known SiRF jet-lag issue, your test is not representative. You would have to put the 60cxs in the fridge, then transport the fridge a mile away and then take it out.

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OK, now I'm really confused!

 

After the second of the above noted fridge tests, my CSx was left running in the house for a half hour or so and appeared to be working fine.

 

Then I went out to get some Mothers Day stuff and about 1/4 mile from the house, tracking our sub road perfectly, I suddennly lost signal and the 60CSx refused to reacquire at all until I powered off at the flower store & powered back on when I left.

 

Why would it work for a while then drop all signal? I was in an area where I always got strong reception before.

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I took my 60csx and forerunner 301 into a 1.4mile tunnel a few times today.

Basically the 60csx looses reception and an error message comes up, to get reception back (while using the satellite page) this is the sequence I had to go through- "satellite reception lost"- enter- menu-GPS off-enter-menu-GPSon-enter. At this point the unit would reacquire signals. If I did not go through this I would not be able to get the unit to function properly.

One interesting variation occurred which Hertzog has already noted. On one occasion after the "satellite reception lost " message I noted when I exited the tunnel that the unit once again showed signal strength bars and was able to show my location Long & Lat correctly for a short while before it lost the signal completely.

I did not have to reboot my unit to get things to work during any of the tunnel exits.

The really interesting thing is that my forerunner 301 was able to reacquire a signal without my having to do anything at all. Not bad for an old unit. It would be great if Garmin could make the process of satellite reacquisition automatic in the 60CSx. Though I should state that the process of reacquiring a lock is so simple it is no big deal.

60CSx

GPS SW 2.5

Firmware 2.71beta

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