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Is bigger really better (or even necessary)? Memory issue...


ehuesman
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As I stated in my other post (look nearby), I'm new to this and trying to decide between a couple GPSrs (new Vista Cx or used 60CS). My question here is how much memory is everyone actually using for caching? I know its human nature to do the "bigger is better" thing, but geocaching.com recommended getting a GPSr with 8MB of memory if you are going to load maps (which I will). I thought that I would be sitting pretty if I got an old Vista with 24MB, but find myself getting caught up in thinking the upgradeable memory in the new series is a "must". Is it? Can't I just load a map as needed and then if I am going to another part of the state (or world), just unload it and put the new map on? How much memory does a typical topo map use? I need some solid advice on this. Thanks.

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I have the Vista C and for the area I cache in, 24 MB is more than enough.

 

When I took a few road trips to Colorado, I loaded the maps along the routes I thought I would be taking. A couple of times, I fell off the map, but was no worse for wear. :lol:

 

I had my laptop with me, so I could put new maps on the Vista C, if needed. With the USB connection, it doesn't take long to put a new Mapset on the GPSr.

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I use the added memory card in my 76CSx for more than just maps. Sure, it's great to have a ton of maps but normally I don't need them all. I'm taking a multi-state trip in July though and it will be great to have street-level maps for all the states completely loaded.

 

However, I also use the memory card to store a red light camera database. When I'm in a strange city and there's a red light camera I get a popup warning. I also use it to store a pocket query of all my finds. When I want to place a new cache it's easy to see if the spot is the requisite distance from other caches even if I've already found them. I really love that. I can simply stand where I want to place the cache and then check the nearest caches on my normal memory and then check the nearest caches on the memory card with may "all finds" pocket query on it. Very handy.

Edited by Thrak
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I noticed that Miragee, and others on other posts, talk about having enough memory for where they cache. I live in the San Francisco Bay Area (East Bay), and would be doing the majority of my caching in northern California. Is this an area where I would need more than the usual amount of memory?

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I noticed that Miragee, and others on other posts, talk about having enough memory for where they cache. I live in the San Francisco Bay Area (East Bay), and would be doing the majority of my caching in northern California. Is this an area where I would need more than the usual amount of memory?

 

Totally off topic:

 

It always boggles me to see SF referred to as Northern California. Sure it isn't really Southern California and not quite Central California but it has pretty much zero in common with the actual Northern California counties and towns. It's city. We're rural. The town where I live has gotten HUGE as far as we are concerned. Waaaaaay too big. The entire "urban area" has around 100k population. We're more used to "big" towns in the 35k range and "regular" towns in the 10k or under range. I can remember this "big" town being 35k population or so. I wish it was still that way...........

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I'm also in the San Francisco Bay Area (South Bay). Just on a whim, I checked to see how much memory street maps of Antioch, Concord, Fremont, Hayward, Mill Valley, Napa, Oakland, San Jose, Santa Rosa, South San Francisco, and Sunnyvale, CA would take if loaded all at once. (Essentially a rectangle with San Francisco in center, north to Santa Rosa, South to almost Santa Cruz, East to the I-580/205 interchange, West to Pacific Ocean.) All those maps are 20.8 MB in MapSource City Select North America v 7.

 

If you're planning on carrying all those maps with you at all times, you might want a lot of memory. Me? I just load maps for the area I'll be caching in on a particular day, not the entire San Francisco Bay Area.

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If I'm not using the GPSr for city maps, only topo maps for caching and hiking, would the 24MB suffice?

I use the Vista C with the topo program. If you are bringing along your laptop, there should never be a problem. I've had to reload the maps only on extended trips through multiple states but for everyday caching, the vista C with 24mb will be plenty.

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Somebody's gotta stick up for the "bigger is better" crowd. Might as well be me. :huh:

I got a 64mb card with my 60CSx, which let me load most of my caching area. If I went out of town, I'd need to erase my detailed maps and load the maps for the area I was going to. This proved to be a PITA, so I upgraded to a 512mb card. I now have the entire southeast United States loaded, which used about half my available space.

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Somebody's gotta stick up for the "bigger is better" crowd. Might as well be me. :huh:

I got a 64mb card with my 60CSx, which let me load most of my caching area. If I went out of town, I'd need to erase my detailed maps and load the maps for the area I was going to. This proved to be a PITA, so I upgraded to a 512mb card. I now have the entire southeast United States loaded, which used about half my available space.

 

That's my kind of thinking.

 

Load it once and never worry about it again.

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Yup . . . :huh:

 

Personally, I like the button placement and the small size of the Vista. And, I think the little click stick is easier to navigate with.

 

But . . . have you considered the Venture Cx? You might save more money getting that unit, unless you really want the compass and altimeter of the Vista Cx.

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So having these things in mind, would you all recommend the new Vista Cx over the used 60CS?
I would just because of the much better GPS sensitivity. I just bought a 2GB Micro SD card at Fry's this weekend for 30 bucks. Is anymore discussion needed about memory?

I have a Vista Cx, with a 2gb card. Since I travel a lot for my job I decided to load the entire country onto the card (excluding Ak and Hi), and I have plenty of space left over for POIs.

 

Ehuesman, if you're still not sure about the Vista Cx vs the 60CS, check to see if the 60CS will allow you to load Points Of Interest files. If not, I'd say go with the Vista. You can use this feature to load thousands of caches instead of the 500 waypoints that the Vista limits you to.

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