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Garmin GPS-MAP 60CSx owners...


Desert_Warrior
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Garmin GPS-MAP 60CSx owners... I want to replace an older GPS unit. Looking real close at the GPS-MAP 60CSx.

 

Number one on my requirements is battery life. I like to hike. I like long hikes. I don't like my batteries going dead in the middle of a hike and losing my tracklog.

 

Question 1. How long do your batteries last - and what kind of batteries do you use? (eg 2600ma Ni-MH, Duracel Alkalines, etc.)

 

Question 2. Anything you DON't like about the GPS-MAP 60CSx? I have a 60CS and after a few years I still like it.

 

Thanks.

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The track log is stored in the memory so if the batteries die the tracklog is always stored. I have had mine several weeks now and while I haven't timed it the unit has been running well on the NiMh batteries I have used so far. I like the Kerkland brand AA batteries from Costco for Alkalines in digital equipment.

 

Number 2 is that I don't have the $200 need for the Topo and City maps now that I have the unit. The base maps are just the major interstates.

 

Tom

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I just got my 60csx, and am loving it.

 

1. I'm still on my first set of batteries, but I did a 9 hour session last weekend, and only dropped 1 bar, and this is after playing with it for a couple of weeks. I'm using standard Duracell batteries.

 

2. I haven't found much that I don't like. I with the SD card slot was in a different location.

 

As far as the maps go. I got the Garmin Topo maps, and returned them. I realize that they are 1:100000 scale maps, but in my area, this doesn't give enough detail. I just print a topo map from either Delorme Topo USA, or One downloaded from the Internet. I load the Metroguide on the GPS. This gives me enough detail to be able to follow my progress with the printed topo map.

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Have had my 60CSx for almost a year now. For me it was definitely the right choice, would get it again if had it to do over. No real complaints with it.

 

I am using the Nimh, Ray-0-Vac 15 min. 2300 mA, rechargeables, (probably not the best choice in the Nimhs now), but I like the fact that I can recharge them in 15 min., at home or in auto and have freash batteries. The only thing with them is they have a very short shelf life (2 weeks and are to weak to run my GPSr). As far as length of time my 60CSx will run on them, is around 14 hours, but I do keep WAAS on all the time, compass on some of the time, and use the backlight some. Would not use the Ray-o-vacs if I hadn't already had them from when they first came out.

 

Would be nice if Garmin would increase the number of map segments that can be downloaded to the GPSr, currently is 2025... regardless of the size of your GPSr's memory card. Mapsource U.S. Topo currently use a lot of map segements.

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I usually pop in a fresh set of rechargables before going out each day, so I don't have much experience with battery life in my 60CSX. It is always still going strong at the end of the day, down maybe 1 bar on the battery meter.

 

I did however leave it on overnight after a day of caching once and it still had juice the next morning, so I'd say 20 hrs sounds about right.

 

I use 2100ma Ni-MH.

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I love my 60CSx, too. I can't imagine using anything other than NiMH batteries, personally. If I'm doing any serious numbers of caches, I just charge 'em up ahead of time (or while I'm en route with a cigarette lighter charger), and I'm good for the day.

 

Some folks don't realize that there's a setting on the unit to specify that you're using NiMH batteries -- you get a better indication of the amount of charge remaining if you choose that option.

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OK - I was not clear on this. I know what tracklog you have doesn't go away with dead batteries..... But if you are not watching the GPSr and the batteries go dead - you could be a few miles down the trail before you see that - and lose the MAKING of a complete tracklog for that time the batteries were dead and you didn't see it.

 

20 hours it seems.... well - I don't usually hike 20 hours at a time....... not sure if I could anymore... but there were times when I was in the army.

 

Thanks.

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OK - I was not clear on this. I know what tracklog you have doesn't go away with dead batteries..... But if you are not watching the GPSr and the batteries go dead - you could be a few miles down the trail before you see that - and lose the MAKING of a complete tracklog for that time the batteries were dead and you didn't see it.

 

20 hours it seems.... well - I don't usually hike 20 hours at a time....... not sure if I could anymore... but there were times when I was in the army.

 

Thanks.

 

Ironically, I just made a post about interpreting track logs as I did a 3 day boat trip last weekend. From what I can tell, the fact that the batteries die during use has no impact on the track log except that internally (and non-user noticeable) the track log gets split when the batteries die.

My take on battery life is well...it's a miracle!. Being a former Lowrance user, my GM100 would get maybe 8 hours on FOUR brand new alkalines. I used 2500 NiMH last weekend and saw only about 12 hrs but I do not think those were at brand new capacity. Alkalines faired a little better - didn't time them - but used the backlight and function keys extensively for both.

 

There is a setting to tell the unit which batteries are in it and I also found if you put near-dead batteries in the unit and will show a slightly optimistic charge in them and die very suddenly. The unit just fades as the batteries die. My GM100 gave a low warning voltage and then also gave an audible alarm 3 seconds prior to shutdown, this unit does not.

Edited by MajBach
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Garmin GPS-MAP 60CSx owners... I want to replace an older GPS unit. Looking real close at the GPS-MAP 60CSx.

 

Number one on my requirements is battery life. I like to hike. I like long hikes. I don't like my batteries going dead in the middle of a hike and losing my tracklog.

 

Question 1. How long do your batteries last - and what kind of batteries do you use? (eg 2600ma Ni-MH, Duracel Alkalines, etc.)

 

Question 2. Anything you DON't like about the GPS-MAP 60CSx? I have a 60CS and after a few years I still like it.

 

Thanks.

 

Battery life: Lemme put it this way, I've accidentally left it on overnight and come back to it 8+ hours later and it's still on, after a day's caching.

 

Things I don't like: The fact that I paid more for an inferior product to the Cx. Both the compass and barometric altimeter are in constant need of recalibration. The compass I have almost never used, and the barometric altimeter cannot be turned off. Also, since the 76 is now cheaper, floats, and comes with a bigger microSD card, I'd probably go for that one instead if I were buying now. I'd reccomend the 76Cx over the 60CSx.

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Garmin GPS-MAP 60CSx owners... I want to replace an older GPS unit. Looking real close at the GPS-MAP 60CSx.

 

Number one on my requirements is battery life. I like to hike. I like long hikes. I don't like my batteries going dead in the middle of a hike and losing my tracklog.

 

Question 1. How long do your batteries last - and what kind of batteries do you use? (eg 2600ma Ni-MH, Duracel Alkalines, etc.)

 

Question 2. Anything you DON't like about the GPS-MAP 60CSx? I have a 60CS and after a few years I still like it.

 

Thanks.

 

Battery life: Lemme put it this way, I've accidentally left it on overnight and come back to it 8+ hours later and it's still on, after a day's caching.

 

Things I don't like: The fact that I paid more for an inferior product to the Cx. Both the compass and barometric altimeter are in constant need of recalibration. The compass I have almost never used, and the barometric altimeter cannot be turned off. Also, since the 76 is now cheaper, floats, and comes with a bigger microSD card, I'd probably go for that one instead if I were buying now. I'd reccomend the 76Cx over the 60CSx.

 

Been using my 60CSx for over a year and have no complaints at all. The only time anything needs to be caibrated is when the batteries are replaced. No biggie, takes less than a few minutes to do this. I don't know why anyone would have a problem with it.

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I get about 20hrs of battery life with my 60cx using 2500mAh energizer batteries or 2100mAh rayovac hybrid batteries. If I use the backlight it's about half of that.

 

I wasn't to keen on the battery life of the 60cx when I first got it, I was upgrading from a legendC which garmin claimed 36hr battery life on(I usually would get between 25-32hrs). it was hard to go from 30hrs of battery life on the legendC to less than 20 with the 60cx(I was using cheap batteries and only getting about 12hrs of battery life).

 

I really can't complain about the battery life of the 60cx, it is much improved over many of the older units I have owned. also when I need to conserve power I will just get a good lock before a hike, mark a waypoint and turn the unit off. usually it only takes a few seconds from powering the unit back on to get a pretty good fix again, so I may only have the GPSr on for less than a hour a day. (1hr X 20hr battery life= 20days use without changing batteries)

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I'm not much of a hiker or backpacker, but it seems to me that as long as speeds are low and precise fixes are not really usefull, the 60CSx can be run in power saver mode to extend the life of the batteries. I use rechargable NiMh batteries and carry an extra set, but a friend of mine runs non-rechargable lithium batteries when backpacking and gets several day's use on one set. They are a little pricey, but as he says, every ounce counts.

 

If I hiked or backpacked more, I'd seriously look at the new Vista HCx which reportedly has all the cool features of the 60CSx, but in a smaller, lighter, and cheaper unit.

 

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To elaborate a bit more on power saver mode mentioned by Glen W:

By default the electronic compass turns on when the 60 is powered up; this feature is a big draw on battery juice. The advantage of the e-c is that the compass will point in the right direction when standing still, mimicking a real compass. I usually disable this feature (easy to do on 60s - press and hold PAGE button while in compass or map page) until I arrive close to ground zero. Most caches out in the bunies are relatively easy to find; so, you will find you don't even need to engage the e-c.

 

As mentioned by others, I too have backup batteries when I hike. I also make it a point to bring along a flashlight that uses AA batteries, which can serve as an emergency backup.

 

I now use a Venture Cx which has excellent battery life. Sure it don't have the fancy pancy SiRF chip nor the e-c, but I feel I don't need those :( .

 

Regarding maps. I use City Navigator NT (which have large segments so you don't have to worry about the 2025 limit as much). It is generally available for $115 from most internet retailers. If price is an issue, you can downgrade to MetroGuide for $85. It has the same map detail as C-N and has no unlock codes, but it does not support auto-routing. The unlock code thing provides some peace of mind when shopping for it on Ebay; you can grab an earlier version for half the price. And there are some programs available that can enable M-G to autoroute.

Edited by Chuy!
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It is a mystery to me why all the posts mention buying the best possible GPS unit, and then they start saving on the batteries. If you don't mind changing the batteries frequently by all means use rechargeable NiMH.

 

I will only use Lithium batteries, they are the best and I demand the best. My life may depend on them and to be sure I carry enough new Lithiums, as well as all the rest of the kit!

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The barometric altimeter calibrates itself, if you want it to, and the magnetic compass needs calibration if you change the batteries. Ah, now I see, that was already written above.

 

The magnetic compass can be enabled/disabled by holding the PAGE key, regardless of which screen you are looking at.

 

The magnetic compass is in the same state when you turn on the unit as it was when you turned it off.

 

The magnetic compass I use every time I look for a cache. Much better than a unit that doesn't have it.

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I also love my 60CSx.

 

I use Radio Shack 2100mah NiMH batteries, now going on six years old, on a full charge (12 hrs to fully recharge these old dogs) I get 15+ hrs of "normal" use (clipped to a shoulder strap or a deck bungie). I do not discount claims of 20 hrs on newer 2500mah NiMH rechargeables.

 

Things that I would improve:

 

- earlier low battery warning. The beep isn't very loud and you only get one warning just as the unit shuts down. Kinda lame and should be fixable in the software.

 

- Louder turn-by-turn warning beeps. There is no volume control. If you are talking to someone in the car or have the radio on, fuggeddabowdit!

 

You either like or hate the electronic compass and barometric altimeter. No one seems neutral about them. I like them both, although I get more value out of the altimeter, it is accurate and creates much smoother track logs compared to the GPS altimeter (at least compared to my old unit). I only use the compass occassionally, but like the fact that it holds my bearing when I'm stopped, a nice feature in many circumstances when you are lost and confused (thick fog, kayak, two miles from shore).

 

The 76 also seems very comparable to the 60.

 

Happy trails!

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By default the electronic compass turns on when the 60 is powered up; this feature is a big draw on battery juice.

The compass should stay off when you power up if you had it off when you powered down. Also, although the compass on the 60CS does draw a lot of current (increases the load about 50% when on), they did something with the 60CSx design and it seems to draw negligible power (at least when the 60CSx is stationary, which is how I've tested it).

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The compass on the 60CSx draws wery little power.

 

If you look at Garmins page, you will see.

60CSx 18 hour battery

60Cx 18 hour battery

 

It's the same battery time.

 

60CS 20 hour

60C 30 hour.

 

So here the compass makes a big difference.

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I have read other forum posts that indicate battery contact problems with 76CSx units (and perhaps 60CSx) after a couple of years. In that case the longer the battery life of lithiums would be better. I've gotten around 40 hours on energizer e2 lithiums in my 76CSx with compass on always but very little backlight use. All that for around $4 per set (8 pk). Just had to give 'em a try. :laughing: I'm going back to Copper Tops when the e2s are gone.

 

I can't figure out why Garmin chose to put a spring under the (-) end of one battery in the compartment and not the other. Is the circuitry inside packed that close to the case?

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I was out on a hike recently and had forgotten spare batteries. When I got the BATTERY LOW warning beep I switched to battery saver mode (60CSx) and managed to get another 20min or so of track logged before the unit faded out. This was very impressive as I normally get very little time after the low battery warning.

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