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TOPO 2008


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Im taking a wait and see attitude. I think you guys are eager beavers and will soon be dissapointed with TOPO 2008. You won't get the 24K accuracy, but I imagine roads will be much improved more so than the current USGS 100K maps.

I guess it doesn't matter for the couch potatoes who aren't much active in the great outdoors.

Please no flames!

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I just got off the phone with tigergps.com :mad: and they said that TOPO 2008 arrived today at their warehouse and it will ship to those who preordered it today!! :D

 

I can confirm this. I just checked the order status on the site, and it's been updated to shipped and issued a tracking number. :mad:

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think you guys are eager beavers and will soon be dissapointed with TOPO 2008

 

Well, since I don't have any maps for the GPSr, I don't think I'll be dissappointed.

 

As far as details, I don't hike with the GPSr to tell me where I'm going or what elevation is around the bend, that would take away the fun of the hike. I use it to get me back to the truck and tell me how far I've been. Wouldn't even have the GPS if it wasn't for GeoCaching.

 

Placed the order today and already have a tracking number and shipment confirmation.

 

Now, if I can just get some vacation time to travel to New Mexico where I could really use the software. :)

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So how does Topo 2008 differ from the old Topo US? I can't imagine many of the contours have changed and I have other maps for cities?

 

I'll be interested to hear how it goes.

 

BTW - I couldn't help but be amused by the fact that the Canada and UK Topo maps are intended for the US domestic market only on the Garmin website. :o)

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Please report back not only on lock status but also on tile size, Those of us with older non-x units might be interested if the tiles aren't hiuge.

Ok guys, I received my Topo US 2008 tonight and can give my first impressions. It will take some time to go over it in more in depth, but here goes.

 

Topo US 2008 is NOT locked. This is great news, and I figured this would be the case. The single DVD is just over 3GB (3.06GB) on my hard drive. I have the US topo 1:100K for the East and West (no HI or Alaska) and this totals about 1.12GB in comparison. The total mapping resides on your hard drive, like my City Select does, no need to insert the DVD each time.

 

The tiles are the same tiles, the same geographic size, as US Topo 1:100K, but file size is anywhere from double to over three times for the same coverage. For NY State as an example, Topo 2008 is about 65MB, while the old topo is about 26MB.

 

The street labeling is great! I really missed this with the old topo. Topo US 2008 does NOT include route calculation data. Contour intervals are now 25 feet so there is a lot more detail. I heard comments before of elevation data being off, but the areas in upstate NY I'm familiar with and have looked at are fine compared with the old version. The appearance on screen in MapSource is terrific with terrain shading, and the little data I've loaded as a test looks great as well on my Map 60Cx.

 

To summarize, I'm very impressed! I'll report more of my impressions after spending more time playing and loading maps.

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Elevation being off is a difficult thing to quantify. Elevations are certainly different than those in the older Topo for a lot of mountain peaks, but if you go to the USGS gnis site you will find that the elevations listed there are not the same as either product in some cases. If you look at paper copies of the maps the 1:24,000 series often lists a different number than the 1:100,000 series. There are differences/problems to be sure, but I'm not sure Garmin is to blame.

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The information that the contour interval for Topo 2008 is 25 feet interests me greatly. The map viewer on Garmin's website shows a 150 foot interval which is more in line with 1:100K scale maps. The National Parks 1:24K topo interval is 25 feet. It seems odd that the lower resolution Topo 2008 would have the same interval. Wouldn't that make the National Parks software redundant?

 

Can anyone else confirm the 25 foot interval?

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Cool!

 

Mine is supposed to be here tomorrow or the next day. I am sure everyone that preordered will be getting theirs this week. As more users get their copies and evaluate areas that they are familiar with, we can put together a pretty good knowledge base.

 

My is comming today by UPS.. I can't wait!! However, since this is my very first GPS map, i'm not sure my evaluation of it will be much help. I'll still give my .02 cents worth once i get it and get to play with it.. (be about what its worth)..

 

--danny

Edited by danny_1970_gps
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Thanks for the screenshot Timpat. I looked closer at Garmin's online map viewer. It seems that some states (i.e., those east of the Rocky Mountains) were blessed with 25 foot intervals, whereas others (the western states) have to make due with 150 foot intervals. Makes sense to reduce the interval in mountainous regions to avoid map clutter, but it would be nice to have 25 foot intervals in the vast stretches of desert we have out here.

Edited by Glenn W
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It seems that some states (i.e., those east of the Rocky Mountains) were blessed with 25 foot intervals, whereas others (the western states) have to make due with 150 foot intervals. Makes sense to reduce the interval in mountainous regions to avoid map clutter.

 

I wondered what was going on, I seen people complaining about the detail yet when I used the online map viewer here in Wisconsin seemed much more detailed than the old software.

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Thanks for the screenshot Timpat. I looked closer at Garmin's online map viewer. It seems that some states (i.e., those east of the Rocky Mountains) were blessed with 25 foot intervals, whereas others (the western states) have to make due with 150 foot intervals. Makes sense to reduce the interval in mountainous regions to avoid map clutter, but it would be nice to have 25 foot intervals in the vast stretches of desert we have out here.

 

By looking at the map viewer in my area, it appears my area has 50 foot intervals.

 

Maybe all these variations with intervals is why the new map takes up so much more space

then the old topo maps.....

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Here's a screen shot of one of my old hiking areas in Wyoming in the Cloud Peak Primitive Area with Topo US 2008. You can see the contour intervals here are 50 feet for the intermediate, and 150 feet for the index.

 

TopoUS_2008_CloudPeak.jpg

 

Compare the elevation of Cloud Peak (12864 ft) on your screen shot of TOPO 2008 with the elevation of the same Cloud Peak from the older "obsolete version" 13166/13167 ft.

 

Also note that the Mountain Peak symbol (2008 ver) is not even on the "top"

 

I think Garmin still has some major data error problems.............

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Here's a screen shot of one of my old hiking areas in Wyoming in the Cloud Peak Primitive Area with Topo US 2008. You can see the contour intervals here are 50 feet for the intermediate, and 150 feet for the index.

 

TopoUS_2008_CloudPeak.jpg

 

Compare the elevation of Cloud Peak (12864 ft) on your screen shot of TOPO 2008 with the elevation of the same Cloud Peak from the older "obsolete version" 13166/13167 ft.

 

Also note that the Mountain Peak symbol (2008 ver) is not even on the "top"

 

I think Garmin still has some major data error problems.............

 

I watch discover channel a lot, and they say earth is always moving/changing. What is a mountain

today might been in the ocean a million years ago.. (faster changes in hawaii). Maybe your

outdated topo was right then, but wrong now? Even if a number of years isn't enuff to make a big

difference, are you sure the new is wrong and old is right?

 

Just asking, not trying to be a smart butt here...

 

--danny

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Well I compared that same area on my old topo to my new topo, and the marked location of the mountain peak is located at the same spot on both topos. By looking at the two though, I think that the new version is a much better representation of the terrain than the old that has broken contours and less of them. Plus, I think when somebody is near the peak, it will probably stick out :angry: , so it shouldn't be hard to find.

 

Oldtopo.jpg

Topo2008.jpg

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It might be worthwhile considering where the data come from and how the maps are generated. There is no way that Garmin is doing ANY of the data generation for this; they acquire the data just like everyone else. You too can get the data from the USGS. I have been doing this myself for a while and have been generating topo maps for my GPSr for my own use. There are several facets to topo maps:

  1. contour lines (calculated from estimated elevation data)
  2. streams and other water features
  3. human modifications (roads, dams, pipelines, train tracks)
  4. location names (points of interest)

Each of these come from a different data source. Each data source has issues with resolution and quality. Many data points are very old; many data are digitized off hand-drawn older maps. All across the US there is a patchwork of levels of data quality.

 

The result is several transparent layers that are stacked on top of each other. Each of the data sources work hard to create good data, but the data are never perfect and there are tons of concessions to keeping the filesizes managable.

 

Consider the process of calculating contour lines: you start out with estimated elevations at various points in a landscape. In places where it is most interesting, many spots are inaccessible so the surveyors have to estimate. The contour-line generation programs that I am aware of all require the data to be on a grid. So the first thing that happens is that a grid of data points are generated. This process looses some smaller features and may smooth some things out that are not smooth in the landscape. The result are that National Elevation Data that you can obtain from the USGS; you can chose from three grid sizes.

 

The next step is to calculate the contour lines from these data. Various decision have to be made as to what the output is to include. Not too long ago 8 mB was a lot of RAM in a GPSr and the screens were black-white; there was not point in having dense contour lines because the screen would just fill in black in steep terrain. It is actually quite impressive how they resolved this issue by dropping data to reduce file size and to make things display well on those old screens. But on today's high-res color displays with 2gig memory cards, this is not needed. But even here, having 25ft intervals is not all that helpful.

 

Also, when the mountain peak POI is 200ft to the east of the 50ft polygon that is the contour line in which it "should" be, then I would point out that the original data (probably taken in the 1950s) were not that accurate and you are allowing yourself to be deceived by a beautiful surface. Go out there to that peak and see if you don't find that both are slightly off from the location where you believe the peak to be. If you want to argue that 200 ft can get you killed, then I would point out that this is exactly why you need to be very careful with how you read and trust any topo map.

 

So, given what I see in the images posted here, I would say that the Garmin Topo product is doing an decent job.

 

I am very curious as to some things that I am not seeing in the posted images and I wonder if these are user-selectable features that were turned off: streams (I see a lake but no stream feeding it - a topo map that does not include streams is not as useful for geocaching as the ones I build myself) and dirt roads and trails.

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Going to several 14000 peaks in my area and to several NGS BM where the elevation and locations are "adjusted"(accurate to a gnat's rear) my GPS points are much closer to the old version.

 

So, when USGS Topo's, official NGS Benchmarks, and GPS ,and the "old" Topo all agree within a very small margin of error and the "new" TOPO 2008 says something different to the tune of several hundred feet.......I would doubt if it is correct. That would also make the new profile feature kinda bogus.

 

The new version says that several of Colorado's 54 "Fourteeners" are now no longer over 14000 ft. That's incorrect according to several calibrated altimiters and the most recent survey data.

Edited by Grasscatcher
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Received it this afternoon and have had about an hour to play with it. Looking at current and old houses here in SC, already found a couple of roads mislabeled, campground symbol in my parents front yard versus across a large pond and a few other minor things.

 

One of the things I was wanting was the back roads in addition to determining grades on general roads out west and I'm a little disappointed tonight. Here in the "Low Country" where things are relatively flat, the roads show up great, however, in the Appalachin Mts, it gets hard to follow them becase the contour lines are so dominant. It would be nice if I could reduce the number of contour lines without turning off the roads too.

 

As far as the intervals, I've noticed that the interval is based on terrain of the area. Near home where there it is flat, the interval is 25'. In the mountains of NC, the interval was 75'. Out in Yellowstone the interval is 150'.

 

Looking at the inteval at Yellowstone, did notice good detail of the trails around Old Faithful. Without walking them and comparing tracks, the trails did seem fairly accurate.

 

Just remember, this is my first map source map so nothing to compare it to except Microsoft S&T. I'm not a die hard hiker where I'm worried about exact elevations to pinpoint my location on another map, just a general over view and good idea of what to expect. So far, the topo seems to be providing that with fair amount of accuracy.

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Hi all, just a quick note that may pertain to the new mapset. I'm currently a geography student looking into cartography, and my thoughts based on what you have said are that for elevations between different versions would suggest that Garmin is using different data than the older versions. I'm currently comparing USGS 24K and Garmin's maps and I think Garmin doesn't make their maps, but just buys them from another company. Contour intervals should change based on the areas so that it's much easier to read the number of lines. You should look in an area of the Great Plains and see of they maybe have 15' contour intervals.

 

Just a few thoughts from what I've read above, I haven't actually seen the map to play around with it, but it sounds fun! :-D

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Is anyone having any trouble with topo 2008?

 

I'm getting problems loading maps.. Sometimes it says this gps don't support map transfer. Other times it starts to load some and stops before the end.

 

I got the 76CSX with a 2 gig card. So far only been able to load a few maps to it successfully.

 

Its prob. due to my inexperience i hope. Hope my 2 gig card isn't bad that i got off amazon.

 

Thanx for any help.

UPDATE: Was just able to successfully load 383 maps with 199.6 MB used. Just was being

a bit difficult. GPS prob. a women.

 

--danny

Edited by danny_1970_gps
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I got my copy of Topo 2008 yesterday and I would like to give my impressions of it.

 

As others have said it is not locked, and it does not route. Also I do not think it will be possible to make it route with a hack because it is based on a different data set and I don't think the information is there (unlike Metroguide where the info is there but turned off). I could be wrong though.

 

From what I can tell, the contour intervals are 50' in the mountains, 25' in non-mountains (except in Florida, where they are at odd intervals-- 82ft, 164 ft???)

 

The road data appears to be good. Not as good or up to date as City Nav, but good. The streets are named in most areas, but not numbered (no block numbers). I looked at my old neighborhood in Lubbock, Texas which has been there about 6 years and it was there. Some of the newer areas are not. It appears to have very good rural road coverage which you would expect.

 

I did some checking of the Elevation data. Granted I have only had this program for a day, so I have not had time to check lots of areas, but here is what I found. I built a route in the Santa Fe National Forest in New Mexico. I checked the route profile in T08 and OT(old topo). The route points with T08 and OT were as follows:

 

T08 OT

9135 - 9116

9768 - 9692

10331 - 10333

10696 - 10660

11314 - 11314

11463 - 11468

11876 - 11876

12486 - 12525

 

As you can see, there were some differences. However, I do not think it is fair to say that this map product is built on flawed data, or that the route profiles it will create are "bogus". I think it is fair to say that the information is reasonably good, and the software will provide more information to your GPS than OT will, because AFAIK, OT will not give Vertical Route profiles in your GPS.

 

One thing I noticed, when you have the detail set to highest, at certain zoom levels the maps look extremely cluttered. The contour lines become one big brown spot. This is solved by turning the detail level down, but unfortunately the small roads only come in with the contour lines. Also, the extremely dense contour lines can make seeing the small roads somewhat difficult. The terrain shading really adds to the usability of the product, and makes it easier to visualize what you are looking at.

 

The map tiles are the same geographic size as with OT, but as others have said, they are large in terms of filesize. 8 MB will cover about 7 tiles of mountains, 22 tiles of non-mountains. 24 mb will be 28 tiles of mountains, 64 of non-mountains. 56 mb will cover most of the western half of Colorado from about 30 miles west of Denver to the Utah border. 56 mb will cover almost all of west Texas, from Abilene west to El Paso, including all of the the Panhandle and Big Bend. The whole product is over 4 GB, inlcuding Alaska and Hawaii. One interesting thing--when you get over 4 GB, the map tab gives you a little red warning message "Your selection is over 4 GB", rather than telling you what it actually is.

 

Conclusions.

Overall, I found this to be a good product, and will make the following suggestions.

 

It is not a replacement for City Nav. If you need street mapping and autorouting, City Nav is still the map of choice.

 

If you have City Nav, this is a nice complement.

 

If you have OT, this is a nice upgrade, because it has better street data.

 

If you have OT and City Nav (As I do :ph34r: ), it is probably not worth the money, unless you just want the newest and best, or you want vertical route profiling.

 

If you have a fixed memory handheld or a non-routing handheld, this would be a very good product. It has good street coverage, and good rural coverage. Although I never used Roads and Rec, From what I have gathered, this is a good replacement for R&R with the addition of the Topo data.

 

Hopfully this review will be helpful to some of you!

Edited by CenTexDodger
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I spent the last two hours trying to figure it out, actually. I think I got it. I found a forum on a different site but disagree what was said. Let's see, I used a program called img2gps and sendmap20. If you'd like the steps I'll let you know what I did. I think I got it working, though. I tested it out and it's auto-routing. :-D

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I spent the last two hours trying to figure it out, actually. I think I got it. I found a forum on a different site but disagree what was said. Let's see, I used a program called img2gps and sendmap20. If you'd like the steps I'll let you know what I did. I think I got it working, though. I tested it out and it's auto-routing. :-D

 

I think using the metrowizzz program actually makes this process easier. I used to use Img2gps, but found metrowizzz and haven't used img2gps sense.

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I spent the last two hours trying to figure it out, actually. I think I got it. I found a forum on a different site but disagree what was said. Let's see, I used a program called img2gps and sendmap20. If you'd like the steps I'll let you know what I did. I think I got it working, though. I tested it out and it's auto-routing. :-D

 

As a topo 2008 owner who is not going to buy city nav till 2008 is out, i sure am interested.

 

Could you please share your steps? Thanx in advance.

 

--danny

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If Topo 2008 can autoroute in Mapsource, then it's possible for autorouting on the unit.

 

The steps I used to make metroguide autoroute on my 76Cx are these.

1) Download and install both IMG2GPS and Sendmap20 - use a search engine, they're easy to find.

2) Open Mapsource, and save the selection as a .gbd file.

3) Launch IMG2GPS and load the .gbd file - not the load folder, but the bottom center in the 'list' box.'

4)Select the maps you want ported to the GPS, I assume you would want all the ones you selected and saved the file, so to save time you can choose 'select all' in the list box, above the load button.

5) Check the box to 'create file instead of upload,' then create file. Let the command prompt run, then select where you want the file to save. This make the routable map, but not indexed for search (or so I've read).

6) launch Sendmap20 and 'Add Map' with the garmin GMAPSUPP.img just made.

7) You can change the region name and mapset name if you like, then click "Create GMAPSUPP.IMG."

8) Choose the output location, then replace any GMAPSUPP.img on the microSD card.

 

Those are the steps I have taken and they have worked for me. Goodluck!

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If Topo 2008 can autoroute in Mapsource, then it's possible for autorouting on the unit.

 

The steps I used to make metroguide autoroute on my 76Cx are these.

1) Download and install both IMG2GPS and Sendmap20 - use a search engine, they're easy to find.

2) Open Mapsource, and save the selection as a .gbd file.

3) Launch IMG2GPS and load the .gbd file - not the load folder, but the bottom center in the 'list' box.'

4)Select the maps you want ported to the GPS, I assume you would want all the ones you selected and saved the file, so to save time you can choose 'select all' in the list box, above the load button.

5) Check the box to 'create file instead of upload,' then create file. Let the command prompt run, then select where you want the file to save. This make the routable map, but not indexed for search (or so I've read).

6) launch Sendmap20 and 'Add Map' with the garmin GMAPSUPP.img just made.

7) You can change the region name and mapset name if you like, then click "Create GMAPSUPP.IMG."

8) Choose the output location, then replace any GMAPSUPP.img on the microSD card.

 

Those are the steps I have taken and they have worked for me. Goodluck!

 

AFAICT it does not autoroute in Mapsource.

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I am very curious as to some things that I am not seeing in the posted images and I wonder if these are user-selectable features that were turned off: streams (I see a lake but no stream feeding it - a topo map that does not include streams is not as useful for geocaching as the ones I build myself) and dirt roads and trails.

 

I am also wondering about these features. Perhaps you need to zoom in closer in order to see them? It seems to me that those features are essential...........

 

Can someone who has the software please comment and, perhaps, post updated screen shots showing how those features look?

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I am very curious as to some things that I am not seeing in the posted images and I wonder if these are user-selectable features that were turned off: streams (I see a lake but no stream feeding it - a topo map that does not include streams is not as useful for geocaching as the ones I build myself) and dirt roads and trails.

 

I am also wondering about these features. Perhaps you need to zoom in closer in order to see them? It seems to me that those features are essential...........

 

Can someone who has the software please comment and, perhaps, post updated screen shots showing how those features look?

 

Terrain features are not user selectable. This works like any other Garmin MapSource product. Certain features show up at certain zoom levels. These maps have streams, dirt roads and trails. Keep in mind not all lakes have streams feeding them (or not what you would call streams).

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Got new software yesterday. Looks promising. Does anyone know if the Continintal US will fit on a 2G micro sd card?

 

Not going to happen. I just selected the entire continintal USA and its 5152 maps with 3118.7 MB.

 

I put the eastern part of the USA on my 2 gig card and it took nearly half of it. And it was only about a 3rd of the USA (if that).

 

Topo 2008 takes much more space then older topo's. So if u plan to travel the states, better take a laptop with you or buy mulitiple cards with different parts loaded on them (be your cheapest solution).

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Got my Topo 2008 this week loaded it on my computer today. I then proceeded to load some selected maps on my 60csx and everything seemed fine. I then tried to turn it off and turn City Select back on and it was completely gone on the GPS. Also, the computer ceased to talk to the unit. I had to reload the driver and now am reloading the City Select maps and waiting to see what happens. Are they not compatable? I've loaded City Select, Topo, and Parks 24k, as well as Canada Topo and they were all compatable in the past.

Has anyone had that happen to them with this new software?

 

Maybe the card can't hold both maps. I didn't monitor the card usage but I know I have at least a 1 gb card if not 2 gb.

Edited by photomaniac
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Anytime you load a new mapset to your GPS the existing mapset already on the GPS is erased. You need to make a mapset which contains the City Select maps you want and also the Topo 2008 maps. I loaded 967 MB of City Navigator and Topo 2008 last night and it took almost 2 hrs. Next time I am going to load directly to the card instead of through the GPS.

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I just looked at the TOPO 2008 through the web browser. I looked up my address which is a fairly new community - about four years old. The roads are missing on TOPO 2008 but exist on the latest available MapSource v8. It's interesting they don't overlay the latest road map data from MapSource v8 on top of the updated TOPO 2008 information. It probably has something to do with how the data is represented.

 

The street information looks to be about 5 years old for the area I live. It has been updated since the last TOPO map, but isn't the latest.

 

If the TOPO 2008 doesn't have my local roads on it I am sure it is missing many others.

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