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h2obum
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I'm new to this and would appreciate some advice on a low end gps unit to purchase. I've found the Lowrance Ifinder, Magellan Explorist and I believe that Garmin has one also.

Many, many geocachers use the little yellow Garmin Etrex.

 

Does Garmin still make the Gecko 101? Last time I saw one in the store, they were only $69, but it could have been a close out. The Gecko 201 and 301 can actually download coords, and have a couple of more features.

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Does Garmin still make the Gecko 101? Last time I saw one in the store, they were only $69, but it could have been a close out. The Gecko 201 and 301 can actually download coords, and have a couple of more features.
According to their website, the 101 has been discontinued. Good riddance, I say. Since it doesn't have a port to download coords (or a firmware update), I would stay away from it.
Happy to see someone had my same question.....where is a good place to buy one of the ones you've listed? Like Best Buy or something? Thank you!!!! <_<
I've had very good luck with ebay.
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I'd stay away from the low end eXplorists (100-300) and iFinder Go units, as well as the Geko 101 because they don't allow you to load caches directly to the unit. That is an important feature for all but the most casual of geocachers.

 

That leaves the Garmin Geko 201 and yellow Garmin eTrex which both sell for around $100 new (the yellow a little less and 201 a little more).

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I'd stay away from the low end eXplorists (100-300) and iFinder Go units, as well as the Geko 101 because they don't allow you to load caches directly to the unit. That is an important feature for all but the most casual of geocachers.

 

That leaves the Garmin Geko 201 and yellow Garmin eTrex which both sell for around $100 new (the yellow a little less and 201 a little more).

 

Yeah, as SBell posted the Gecko 101 is history, although they still make the 201 and 301. Gecko 101 would have been a terrible choice, wasn't even WAAS capable (while the 201 and 301 are). The low end Exporists are WAAS capable, and have a decent major road base map (which is amazing for such a low priced unit), but not being able to download sucks, period.

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I'd stay away from the low end eXplorists (100-300) and iFinder Go units, as well as the Geko 101 because they don't allow you to load caches directly to the unit. That is an important feature for all but the most casual of geocachers.

 

That leaves the Garmin Geko 201 and yellow Garmin eTrex which both sell for around $100 new (the yellow a little less and 201 a little more).

 

Yeah, as SBell posted the Gecko 101 is history, although they still make the 201 and 301. Gecko 101 would have been a terrible choice, wasn't even WAAS capable (while the 201 and 301 are). The low end Exporists are WAAS capable, and have a decent major road base map (which is amazing for such a low priced unit), but not being able to download sucks, period.

 

I disagree that the 101 would be a terrible choice for everyone. Its fine for someone who doesn't have a lot to spend and only plans to find a cache or two every now and then. I've seen it sold for for as little as $49 new and for the very casual geocacher on a tight budget it might be a very good choice.

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I am new also, I bought an eXplorist 400 at Walmart for $200 but I can't figure out how to find caches that I downloaded from the site and right now I am tempted to throw the little thing down the toilet!!!!!!! I wish I knew someone who could SHOW me what to do because although I have read and followed all the instructions from the manual, I still can't work it.

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I don't know what your budget will allow, but Wally World has the Garmin Etrex Legend online for 117 + about 5 bucks shipping. This is a very good starter unit. It has mapping capabilities, and you can download caches directly from your computer. Plus, if you don't like it or if there is a problem, you can always return it to your local wally world. Just throwing my 2 cents in the ring...

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I am new also, I bought an eXplorist 400 at Walmart for $200 but I can't figure out how to find caches that I downloaded from the site and right now I am tempted to throw the little thing down the toilet!!!!!!! I wish I knew someone who could SHOW me what to do because although I have read and followed all the instructions from the manual, I still can't work it.

 

Sounds to me like you're a person who needs an EVENT! Please try emailing folks who have placed caches in your area. Most active cachers are tickled to have the opportunity to teach a newbie. If there are no events, try to set up a meeting with one of your local experienced cachers. And don't give up - it's a really fun game once you get going.

 

And, back on-topic, my yellow etrex came from ebay, and I've been pleased with it from the beginning. Maps are cool (I cache with folks who have fancier models), but mine is completely adequate for what I need. And I appreciate being able to save my fingers by being able to download coords from the computer.

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When I first started I got a Magellean Sportrac(?) at Wal Mart for somewhere between $150 and $180. It wasn't the cheapest Magellean, but it wasn't the expensive one either. I loved it. It was to manuver, download points from computer, etc. At a geocaching event, I actually won a Lowrance iFinder Pro. They said it would retail around $350, but that was a year ago and at the time it was one of the top ones. I didn't ever use it, because it was too confusing in the beginning. Then one night my Magellean got stolen from my car and I was forced to learn how to use the Lowrance. Now, I absolutely love the Lowrance and would buy another one if I had to choose again.

 

As far as learning to use a GPS, if your local (or closest) outfitter offers any classes on GPS or even on Geocaching, they might be a good place to start. Sportsman's Warehouse is one of these. (http://www.sportsmanswarehouse.com/events.htm)

 

I actually took a class at a Becoming An Outdoors Woman seminar titled GPS101 and learned a lot about the GPS itself. They had Garmin GPSs I think and were pretty usuer friendly. The main thing I learned was that all (or most) GPSs have the same 6 main screens. They show the same information pretty much just a different order or some other minor differences.

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The OP might also want to check into a Magellan eXplorist 210. The 210 model has 22MB memory for maps, etc. and it allows the download of waypoints from a PC. I saw them on-line for about $135 shipped (new) so you might be able to eBay one cheaper, or get a second hand one from someone who has decided that they want to upgrade. I am considering getting one as a "backup" for my main eXplorist 600 unit...

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If you're not troubled by the idea of entering coords. by hand, go with the iFinder GO. I have this unit and it has been great. I got mine used on Ebay for $54. It's a great starter GPS. I'm currently looking to upgrade to the iFinder Pro with MapCreate software, but that's probably more than you'll need starting out.

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I've had good luck with shopping at TigerGPS. Plus if you find a rockin' good deal on some web site somewhere but don't trust to order from them you can order it from Tiger at their competitors listed price, "We are so sure that our prices are the lowest in the world that if you can find a better price anywhere for any item in our store, we will beat that price. Just fill out our form!" Which I did when I bought my GPS and they honored the lower price - it was great because it allowed me to pick up some accessories (like the rechargeable battery kit!) that I otherwise would've had to shell out extra $$ for.

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Definately if you want to save yourself some time, get a gps that has a usb connection, my explorist 210 has that and even tho I've upgraded to a garmin 60cs, I still always keep my 210 in my cache bag, I like it better for when you need to enter numbers manually, as well as it seems to hold sattelite lock a bit better under tree cover. (should have gotten a csx)

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We have been Geocaching with our friends for a while and just bought a unit this week. We bought an explorist 210 and it seems like the perfect match for the Geocaching hobby. We have found it great for downloading cache locations and it is right on in the accuracy department too. We got it we've already done a couple of dry runs with it and it seems to work great. Happy Caching & Camping! - Carpetking -

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I don't think anyone has mentioned that while the eTrex yellow is cheap, it does NOT come with the cable for connecting it to your PC and you have to buy that separately.

 

By the time you buy the cable, you will be very near the price of the Garmin Legend (which comes with the cable and is a better unit).

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I'm new to this and would appreciate some advice on a low end gps unit to purchase. I've found the Lowrance Ifinder, Magellan Explorist and I believe that Garmin has one also.

Many, many geocachers use the little yellow Garmin Etrex.

thats what i have. i got it from W*L*A*T for $100. i should have waited a week, it was on sale for $90. :blink:

Edited by b1rdbrain
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I'm new to this and would appreciate some advice on a low end gps unit to purchase. I've found the Lowrance Ifinder, Magellan Explorist and I believe that Garmin has one also.

Many, many geocachers use the little yellow Garmin Etrex.

thats what i have. i got it from W*L*A*T for $100. i should have waited a week, it was on sale for $90. :)

If it was in the last 90 days take your receipt in and they will credit back. We do this constantly with everything we buy there. In fact all receipts stay in our wallet for 90 days and we check every time we go to the store.

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