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SergZak

Garmin Vista HCx mini-review

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When looking at the list, press the Menu button on the left-hand side. That will give you the option to "Find Nearest." That is the way I usually search for caches, but if it isn't in the 50 Nearest caches in that list, I have to choose the "Find by Name" option.

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Ok, must have missed something, I don't see a "Quit" key. I do have an "OK" key and the keypad goes away, but it still keeps coming back when its on Find by Name. I guess the question is how do I keep the keypad from appearing?

Now -I- must be missing something here...if you're searching for a waypoint by name, wouldn't you -want- the text-entry keypad to pop up so you can enter the first few letters of the waypoint you're searching for by name?

The only way to get rid of the text-entry keypad is to switch from "Find by name" to "Find nearest" as I said in my previous post and as Miragee stated in his post just above this one. If you're going to "Find by name", the text-entry keypad is always going to pop up, prompting you to enter text.

Edited by SergZak

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Ok, must have missed something, I don't see a "Quit" key. I do have an "OK" key and the keypad goes away, but it still keeps coming back when its on Find by Name. I guess the question is how do I keep the keypad from appearing?

 

I'm not sure what the "OK" key is. I'm referring to the keys as described on page 3 of the "eTrex HC series owner's manual". The "Quit/Page" key should make the keypad go away and leave the waypoints ordered by name. That's how it works on my Vista HCx.

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I hate to beat the same old dead horse, but has anyone done a side by side comparison between the H-chip GPSrs and the 60CSx?

 

I have a Venture Cx and love the size, form and feel of it. However if the antennae on the 60CSx makes it any better a receiver, then I am willing to switch. With the $50 mail in, the price is not too much different.

 

I already think my Venture Cx has better, brighter and more contrast on the screen than the 60’s I have seen, but it all comes down to reception.

 

Does the Vista HCx have better reception than the 60CSx?

Edited by casey97

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I hate to beat the same old dead horse, but has anyone done a side by side comparison between the H-chip GPSrs and the 60CSx?

Yes, but in german language: http://www.naviboard.de/vb/showthread.php?t=21730

CSX and HCX are very similar.

I cannot say which one has the better reception.

As there are different type of antennas this is the most difference. Both systems have a different scope of application.

At this time the HCX needs a firmware update to get a correct trip odom.

 

I thing the most important thing is how you like to press the keys of the unit (There is a big difference).

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I hate to beat the same old dead horse, but has anyone done a side by side comparison between the H-chip GPSrs and the 60CSx?

Yes, but in german language: http://www.naviboard.de/vb/showthread.php?t=21730

CSX and HCX are very similar.

I cannot say which one has the better reception.

As there are different type of antennas this is the most difference. Both systems have a different scope of application.

At this time the HCX needs a firmware update to get a correct trip odom.

 

I thing the most important thing is how you like to press the keys of the unit (There is a big difference).

 

I have friends who leave their 60CSx hanging upsidedown from the lanyard, but the antenna keeps pulling in signal, when my GPS will drop signal unless it is screen side up in my hand. I personally prefer the ergonomics (Ohh that's a big word like FIRETRUCK), of the Venture Cx. If the new H series keep signal without the antana while hanging from a lanyard(like the 60) I may endure the temptation to buy a 60CSx with the $50 mail in, and wait until all the newness bugs are fixed in the H series, and grab one of those. Although Amazon still has the Vista at a reduced price, Wal-MArt has gone up.

Edited by casey97

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Are there any known problems transferring custom POIs (.csv) files to the eTrex H-series units? I had a question this morning from a GPS Tracklog reader. I'm currently testing a Legend HCx and could not get it to work either.

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Well I want thank everyone for their assistance. I got it figured out. However, on my Venture Cx I never had to switched back and forth using Find by Name or Find Nearest. It was just left on Find Nearest and it would download all waypoints for wherever they were listed from, it also showed the found caches along with not found without having to switch back and forth.

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Are there any known problems transferring custom POIs (.csv) files to the eTrex H-series units? I had a question this morning from a GPS Tracklog reader. I'm currently testing a Legend HCx and could not get it to work either.

 

Hehe. helps to put a micro-SD card in!

 

<Sheepish grin>

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I have a couple of questions from a new "portable" GPS user. I bought the Vista HCx and am having issues with the WAAS disabling after turning the unit off. My biggest problem is remembering to turn it back on. Thanks for pointing out it was a bug (I was begginning to think I was totally incompentant).

 

Anyway, I noticed 2 irrating issues and wanted to know if it was normal with this and/or other handhelds. I only have base maps installed, because I wanted to see if I liked the unit before getting city navigator and trail software (another $200).

 

1) When caching the compass points in the direction of the cache and acts like I'm getting nearer (or as in the case of Williamsburg) acts like I was at the next cache even though I hadn't moved when pulling up the next one. Then suddenly as I'm still walking to the correct spot it suddenly says I'm getting further away, but still keeps pointing in the same direction. :tongue:

 

2) I never get an accuracy better than 12-18 feet. Only once it dip to 10 feet accuracy. Is this typical? :D

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I hate to beat the same old dead horse, but has anyone done a side by side comparison between the H-chip GPSrs and the 60CSx?

 

I have a Venture Cx and love the size, form and feel of it. However if the antennae on the 60CSx makes it any better a receiver, then I am willing to switch. With the $50 mail in, the price is not too much different.

 

I already think my Venture Cx has better, brighter and more contrast on the screen than the 60’s I have seen, but it all comes down to reception.

 

Does the Vista HCx have better reception than the 60CSx?

 

I am about to buy an eTrex Vista HCx and already own a 60CSx. I have read enough to believe the HCx is good enough for now and some firmware updates will squash the remaining bugs.

 

Once I have both in hand, I will do some side by side comparisons.

 

My biggest question about the HCx is if the patch antenna makes a large difference over the 60 series quad-helix: does the HCx get a fast, accurate lock independant of antenna orientation?

 

Anyone have any specific requests for comparison points between the 60CSx and Vista HCx? I will do my best to find out.

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I am about to buy an eTrex Vista HCx and already own a 60CSx. I have read enough to believe the HCx is good enough for now and some firmware updates will squash the remaining bugs.

 

Once I have both in hand, I will do some side by side comparisons.

 

My biggest question about the HCx is if the patch antenna makes a large difference over the 60 series quad-helix: does the HCx get a fast, accurate lock independant of antenna orientation?

 

Anyone have any specific requests for comparison points between the 60CSx and Vista HCx? I will do my best to find out.

 

Thanks, I am basing my choice of which new GPS on reception alone. I have narrowed it down to either the eTrex Vista HCx or 60CSx.

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Something I'm anxious to test is how "twitchy" the HCx is.

 

The 60CSx uses the highly sensitive Sirf III chipset. I've noticed, while stationary, position tends to "wander." I suspect this is the result of multipath error - the unit is receiving very weak reflected signals and confusing them for the good signal, leading to a "jumpy" position.

 

The 60CSx has a quad-helix antenna designed to received signals from ALL directions very well.

 

I wonder if the eTrex, with its highly directional "patch" antenna, combined with the high-sensitivity receiver, will result in less multipath error and location "twitch." We'll see!

 

The interface is something you just get used to like buying a new car and learning where the wiper controls are. I'm used to the 60CSx which has a button for just about every function but my friends have eTrex units with the "click stick" and minimal buttons and you learn to use them very effectively.

 

Now that the eTrex line has a decent, high-power receiver chip, I'd recommend most people go with the "HCx" eTrex over the 60CSx. I've never used an external antenna on the 60CSx and I suspect most users don't either. With the eTrex, you get a USB port so you can still get the NMEA data like you would on the 60. It only lacks the antenna port.

Edited by af895

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Today I just walked a 16km track on Schneeberg / Austria, Overall time 6.7 hours, with 1.20 hours of pause during which I mostly switched of the unit.

Under clear sky, while walking down a large and wide, 30-45° steep chute (Schneidergraben), my Vista HCX lost the signal very badly. Then again in the forest below. At least 5% of the tracklog are empty or useless (in distance of total travel).

 

Tweaking the GPS track till it's usable for trackback took about 30 minutes (using a topo map (Amap) and GPS Track Analysis.net) deleting more than 300 out of 2000 points. BTW is there any tool to automatically delete all gps points inbetween the speed is higher than a certain speed?

 

Before tweaking instead of 1320 meters altitude made good it showed around 2400 m. Quite a big difference and useless for amalysing your fitness level etc....

 

P.S track was Losenheim-Fadensteig-Fischerhütte-Klosterwappen-Damböckhaus-Schneidergraben-Nördlicher Grafensteig, Losenheim. Is there a simple solution for linking GPX files and putting them on here - uploading with description to gps-tour.info simply seems too long.

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Can the HCx handle a 6GB card? If so, will it draw as fast with more maps installed, or will the performance be affected? Thank you in advance.

 

- Mark

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Can the HCx handle a 6GB card? If so, will it draw as fast with more maps installed, or will the performance be affected? Thank you in advance.

 

- Mark

 

Keep in mind: Garmin "X" series GPSr's use microSD cards, NOT regular SD cards. The largest microSD (aka "Transflash") card I've heard of is a 4GB.

 

Also, you will very likely reach your map tile limit before the memory limit of the card if you use large cards. These units can only access somewhere around 1500 map segments or "tiles."

 

While they do make maps with larger tiles to counter this, many of Garmin's map products are still "small tile."

Edited by af895

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Can the HCx handle a 6GB card? If so, will it draw as fast with more maps installed, or will the performance be affected? Thank you in advance.

 

- Mark

 

Keep in mind: Garmin "X" series GPSr's use microSD cards, NOT regular SD cards. The largest microSD (aka "Transflash") card I've heard of is a 4GB.

 

Also, you will very likely reach your map tile limit before the memory limit of the card if you use large cards. These units can only access somewhere around 1500 map segments or "tiles."

 

While they do make maps with larger tiles to counter this, many of Garmin's map products are still "small tile."

 

Thanks af, appreciate the input and the quick response.

I was about to buy a 2GB, then I came across this 6GB on Sandisk. http://www.sandisk.com/Products/Item(2447)...roSDHC_6GB.aspx

I'm more worried about the speed in reading the card and drawing the map, but correct me if I'm wrong, that would have more to do with the speed of the card then it would with the GPS. Correct?

 

Thanks again.

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More than likely, the GPS won't read that card. There may be future firmware upgrades to make it work but the largest I've heard used successfully in a Garmin GPSr is a 2GB card - and then only the newer models and NOT using a "high speed" card. The GPS is only capable of pulling data off at a certain rate and some of the faster cards cause problems.

Edited by af895

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Can the HCx handle a 6GB card? If so, will it draw as fast with more maps installed, or will the performance be affected? Thank you in advance.

 

- Mark

 

Keep in mind: Garmin "X" series GPSr's use microSD cards, NOT regular SD cards. The largest microSD (aka "Transflash") card I've heard of is a 4GB.

 

Also, you will very likely reach your map tile limit before the memory limit of the card if you use large cards. These units can only access somewhere around 1500 map segments or "tiles."

 

While they do make maps with larger tiles to counter this, many of Garmin's map products are still "small tile."

According to Garmin:

 

"At this time, the 2 GB cards are the largest microSD cards that can be used for the X-series GPS units. However, the X-series GPS units are not compatible with the San Disk Ultra II cards and therefore we do not recommend using the Ultra II micro SD cards with any of the X units."

 

Also, the map segment limit is 2025, which you would reach if using Topo Canada (not sure about US), but City Nav NT fits fine. I have topos from the praries to the maritimes (from the border to a fair distance north) plus all of North America from CN on a 2 GB card with lots of room left over (about 1.5 GB is used). It does take a few hours to load all these maps into the GPS, but once done...

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...According to Garmin:

 

"At this time, the 2 GB cards are the largest microSD cards that can be used for the X-series GPS units. However, the X-series GPS units are not compatible with the San Disk Ultra II cards and therefore we do not recommend using the Ultra II micro SD cards with any of the X units."

 

Also, the map segment limit is 2025, which you would reach if using Topo Canada (not sure about US), but City Nav NT fits fine. I have topos from the praries to the maritimes (from the border to a fair distance north) plus all of North America from CN on a 2 GB card with lots of room left over (about 1.5 GB is used). It does take a few hours to load all these maps into the GPS, but once done...

 

AH! Thanks for the clarification dogwalkers2. It was the Ultra II cards I'd read about problems with.

 

I got the Vista HCx last night.

 

I didn't have time to go outside with it but it sat, right next to my old 60CSx, on the arm of a sofa, with limited sky view - maybe 1/32 of the sky, out a patio door and windows. The 60CSx got as good as 8 feet of position error while the HCx got as good as 6 feet. Both were rotated to see if different angles would give better signal.

 

I'll put it through its paces when I get a chance but I've got a good feeling based on that indoor test.

 

extremecarver: have you ever tried the 60CSx in the same route you took while testing the HCx? I lived near the Alps years ago and wonder if even the 60CSx would keep a lock under some of the more extreme routes.

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There has been a report that the Ultra II cards work since some month (after a Firmware Update) and there is one person claiming to work with an Ultra II 2GB card in his 60CSx so I assume if you have a dealer that easily returns broken goods you could give it a try.

 

However Ultra II cards are not the fastest. There are 512MB (maybe bigger) Extremememory cards that are about 33% faster than Ultra II in real performance! No incompatibilities about that card have been announced by Garmin

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Anyone care to comment on how well the Hcx compass works? I seem to remember people complaining about the sensitivity of the 60csx compass, as it had to be held perfectly level (supposedly) to get an accurate reading. Is the Hcx any different?

Edited by DevlinNulland

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Anyone care to comment on how well the Hcx compass works? I seem to remember people complaining about the sensitivity of the 60csx compass, as it had to be held perfectly level (supposedly) to get an accurate reading. Is the Hcx any different?

 

The 60CSx is far too sensitive to attitude (pitch, roll) to make it really practical. Having used it for about a year, I had to recalibrate it before every use and then make sure it was perfectly flat.

 

I just tried the Vista HCx on my balcony and in my apartment. The compass on the HCx seemed to work fine without a recalibration, out of the box, pointing in pretty much the same direction(s) before and after a calibration. The 60CSx was mostly unusable without a recalibration before each use.

 

Unfortunately, it still seems very affected by pitch and roll. Pitching it a few degrees up will cause the bearing to change. Certainly not a 3-axis compass like those found on the Magellan units. This is one area where Garmin has catching up to do.

 

*** *** ***

 

One thing I can only give subjective feedback on as I haven't timed it: the Vista HCx seems to get a position lock faster than the 60CSx.

Edited by af895

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A guy in europa had also the power-on-bug. - He solved this problem by HARD RESET.

"The newer etrex units (venture, legend, and vista) with the "Click Stick" use different keys to accomplish these tasks but the idea is the same. Holding the click stick down and then powering up will enter the test screen while holding the "page" key down and the "click stick" down and then powering up will reset the unit. You will be prompted with an "are you sure?" message. On these units holding down the "find" button in addition to the others will avoid the "are you sure" message. Hold the buttons for 5 seconds to clear the unit."

http://www.gpsinformation.org/dale/secret.htm

PAGE + ENTER (click stick) + POWER ON

 

If anyone has the power-on-bug and can also solve it by hard-reset - please give a feedback.

A mate and I just purchased this item. We both had the same problems with power up. He just kept taking the batteries out to restart. Eventually his came good. Mine did not. I read this and completed the hard start. Power up problem has gone. Thanks to this forum for the information gathered by users. Both these items were purchased in the UAE Dubai. We are on holidays from Australia. Items will be used for motorcycle outback trips. Replaced a Etrex Venture Cx.

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Here is my micro-review of the Vista HCX after taking it sailing to the Apostle Islands (as it compares to my last GPS, the Vista C). First, it is really sensitive. Way more than my Vista C. Seems to hold satellites way easier in the house, under canopy, etc... Walking trails on the islands, I could see that it was consistently staying around 13-15 feet of accuracy.

 

Second, I like being able to load it up with a lot of maps. That being said, I don't think I could load a full 2 GB onto my 2 GB SD card, since there seems to be a 2000 map limit (at least with MapSource loading right to the card via GPS - haven't tried it using a card reader yet). Perhaps a firmware update will take care of this.

 

What I don't like:

 

The stupid "recalibrate your compass" message that comes up every time you scroll past the compass screen. This is with firmware 2.40. What were they thinking? And no, I don't want the compass on all the time. Decreases battery life and sometimes I just want to see our direction relative to the arrow, not my actual bearing. Hopefully they will fix this with the next round of firmware.

 

The 0.0 speeds that I see all the time while walking. Also, there seems to be large fluctuations in speed that I don't think are really occurring. Doubtful that a sailboat is going from 3.2 to 4.1 to 3.0 mph every 20 seconds. Both of these things only seem to occur at slow speeds. Seems like 1/4rd of the time while walking it shows 0.0 MPH, while still showing that it is hooked up to 6 satellites. They must have another firmware problem. My old Vista C never would show this much fluctuation.

 

The fact that when you turn it on, if you immediately turn on the backlight it will turn the light off again during the course of startup. Silly. Once again, my old Vista C wasn't like this.

 

So do I hate it? No - I think once they get the firmware right that this GPS will be drastic improvement over anything before it. But in the mean time, I will be mildly frustrated. :-)

 

dan

Edited by dstedman

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Interesting - Garmin no longer offers firmware version 2.40 for the Vista HCX on their website. Guess I will try rolling back...

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2.40 was AFAIK never ever offered on the website. The problems you describe are all present in 2.30 too. 2.20 didn't have the recalibration message, but rest of the faults (0.0 km/h) too as well as backlight.

 

Better stay with 2.40 IMO until it has rolled out officialy as you won't get it back and 2.20 is not downloadable (that was the initial version). Hardware is 2.10 --> what is yours?

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I am really confused here. I am trying to decide between the Vista HCx, 60CSx, and 76 CSx. I would like to use the unit in the car as well so the screen size is important. I am leaning toward the 76 CSx because it's screen is the largest of them all, not much larger than the 60 but still larger and to me, every little bit helps.

 

Someone asked about reception. How is the reception compared between the 60 CSx and 76 CSx? The 60 has an external antenna so that should mean better reception?

 

Also, I don't understand where someone wrote that the resolution on the HCx is better so the larger screen of either the 60/76 does not have an advantage? If the screen is larger, it is larger and it will show more, perhaps not in greater detail due to the lower resolution but it will still show more?

 

Sorry for being confused. :(

 

Thanks

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I am really confused here. I am trying to decide between the Vista HCx, 60CSx, and 76 CSx. I would like to use the unit in the car as well so the screen size is important. I am leaning toward the 76 CSx because it's screen is the largest of them all, not much larger than the 60 but still larger and to me, every little bit helps.

 

Someone asked about reception. How is the reception compared between the 60 CSx and 76 CSx? The 60 has an external antenna so that should mean better reception?

 

Also, I don't understand where someone wrote that the resolution on the HCx is better so the larger screen of either the 60/76 does not have an advantage? If the screen is larger, it is larger and it will show more, perhaps not in greater detail due to the lower resolution but it will still show more?

 

Sorry for being confused. :(

 

Thanks

 

Meh. The 76CSx design is a dinosaur. Not that the underpinnings are any different from the 60CSx - it does the same thing - but the case design isn't as user-friendly as the 60CSx, in my opinion.

 

The 76 case will float if dropped in water where the other two won't - that's it's reason for existing.

 

Screens may be larger on the 60 and 76 but the resolution is similar:

176 x 220 pixels for the eTrex HCx models = 38,720pixels

160 x 240 pixels for the 60CSx = 38,400pixels

 

You don't get more screen real-estate, just larger pixels on the 60CSx.

 

Unless a floating GPSr is important to you, go with the 60CSx over the 76. If you absolutely "need" a tiny unit, the HCx is great.

 

I've owned a 60CSx and a Vista HCx. The 60CSx user interface is friendlier (a button for everything) where the eTrex has a learning curve because buttons are fewer and have multiple functions. Both units function pretty much the same though.

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Meh. The 76CSx design is a dinosaur. Not that the underpinnings are any different from the 60CSx - it does the same thing - but the case design isn't as user-friendly as the 60CSx, in my opinion.

 

The 76 case will float if dropped in water where the other two won't - that's it's reason for existing.

 

Screens may be larger on the 60 and 76 but the resolution is similar:

176 x 220 pixels for the eTrex HCx models = 38,720pixels

160 x 240 pixels for the 60CSx = 38,400pixels

 

You don't get more screen real-estate, just larger pixels on the 60CSx.

 

Unless a floating GPSr is important to you, go with the 60CSx over the 76. If you absolutely "need" a tiny unit, the HCx is great.

 

I've owned a 60CSx and a Vista HCx. The 60CSx user interface is friendlier (a button for everything) where the eTrex has a learning curve because buttons are fewer and have multiple functions. Both units function pretty much the same though.

 

How is the GUI as far as response time or speed pm the 60/76 CSx in terms of scrolling and moving around? Me thinks the newer Vista will be faster?

 

However, I am still confused on the display and pixel issue. Because the screens on the 60/76 are larger than the Vista then you should get more "real estate" when viewing maps but the clarity won't be as good?

 

As far as buoyancy goes, I thought all Garmin handhelds could float...go figure why the 76 does and not the 60.

 

I really wish I had a side by side comparison of the working display and maps of both to see how much viewing you actually get. I cant find any stores that carry both right now.

 

Another thing, the 76 ships with a larger memory card but will have to get a larger one anyways. I also believe the 60 has power issues where the batteries come loose if the unit is moved around a lot or if you use it while riding a bike.

 

The small unit is not something I like tohave. I have an older Etrex and that small display just drives me nuts. I got accustomed to the mini joystick. Still very confused. Argh!

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"However, I am still confused on the display and pixel issue. Because the screens on the 60/76 are larger than the Vista then you should get more "real estate" when viewing maps but the clarity won't be as good?"

 

No you don't get more real estate. Roughly speaking the real estate is the same. Again roughly speaking the 60/76's have 10% bigger screens but 10% worse resolution (measured as pixels/cm not total pixels) so while the screen is 10% bigger you need to view it from 10% further away to achieve the same clarity and viewing it further away effectively reduces the size.

 

If you magnify the screens you will see that letters and objects on the screen are constructed of the same number of pixels but the 60/76 pixels are bigger.

 

Size of the screen is not 'real estate' by itself. For example if a 17" computer monitor could only be at 1280x960 resolution and a 20" monitor could only be at 800x640 resolution, then the 20" monitor would not have more real estate at that resolution.

 

The size of he screen only equals more real estate, IF and only IF the respective pixel resolution is the same which is not the case between the 60/70 and HCx. The 60/76 has worse resolution.

 

The net result is that as far as real estate goes the 60/76 and HCx are as near as dammit, the same. But the HCx has a much brighter screen, which means you can view it in very bright sunlight and it achieves this with better battery life too.

 

Note: when comparing resolution do not look at the total pixel count but look at the pixel per centimeter count.

 

One other point to note is that the 60/76 screens have a slightly better height to width ratio than the HCx screens which would give them a tiny bit more real estate but this bit extra is wasted by using a menu bar across the top of the screen so that when you are on the map page a big chunk of real estate is used up on the 60/76 telling you that er...you are on the map page, brilliant.

Edited by gallet

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Thanks. I just found these pics and looks to me at least that the screen on the 60 is significantly larger and would hold more info but I have no comparison with basemaps:

 

60vistacompareca0.png

Edited by Newb888

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...but I have no comparison with basemaps...

 

If you are interested in the basemap coverage then that is down to the pixels.

 

As you can see from this photo both screens use the same amount of pixels to describe things, the numbers are bigger on the 60 because the pixels are bigger but if you count how many pixels are in the same numbers you will see they are the same.

 

This will also obviously apply to maps as well as there are too few pixels to describe objects in any other way, you can't have pixel dithering on such a tiny screen. So the minimum line you can draw is one pixel.

 

In this case the HCx will show more of the map due to the fact that it displays 176 pixels across the width against the 60/76's 160 pixels across the width. So the HCx will show 10% more map on the width.

 

With regards to the height the 60/76 has 240 pixels against the HCx's 220 pixels so the 60/76 would display about 16% more map top to bottom. But the 60/76 has a menu bar across the top of the map which takes up about 20 pixels of wasted space which brings it down to 220, the same as the HCx.

 

So to sum up the HCx will show 10% more map coverage than the 60/76 and both units will display the same map coverage top to bottom.

 

But although the 60/76 shows less map, it does show it a bit bigger, the solution is the hold the HCx one inch closer.

 

The only circumstance where the bigger screen on the 60/76 would be useful is the artificial situation where you hold the gps as far from you as you possibly can but can still read it. In this instance you could have the 60/76 a bit further away. But no one would ever use a gps by holding it at the absolute extremity of distance that they possibly could.

 

pixelcomp.jpg

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Thanks gallet, you cleared things up. I think for me I will likely use the GPS in an "artificial situation" where I do have it quite far, like on the dash where the larger screen would be necessary. As there are some issues right now with the Vista HCx and I will keep my eyes open for updates from Garmin when the issues will be resolved. If the current issues are not resolved by Xmas I will likely pick up the 60CSx as the $50 rebate expires around then.

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Yes the dashboard car thing might be the only instance where the larger screen would help but you'd only have to put the HCx 10% closer to get the same effect.

 

However there *is* one other important consideration to take into account, and that is if you use it in a car then you will be operating off the car battery which means that you can have the screen illuminated.

 

The HCx screen is quite a bit brighter than the 60CSx, some people are reporting the 60 is almost unusable in bright sunlight. So you will have to weigh up the slightly larger screen of the 60/76 against the *much brighter* screen of the HCx. My guess is that much brighter is going to be more legible than slightly bigger especially as much of the information is colour coded.

 

Probably an in situ test is the only way to resolve it for you.

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You can see a good comparison of the coverage and brightness if you use babelfish to translate this page then it appears that the HCx is brighter at 50% than the 60CSx is at 100%!

 

You can also clearly see that the HCx is covering more of the map.

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Probably an in situ test is the only way to resolve it for you.

Agreed.

 

Newb888 - I don't know where you live, but I just did an in-situ test on these two units last week. I checked around here (NC), and the only retailer I found that had both units in stock was REI. Not only did they have both units in the same display case, they also had batteries in them. I was impressed!

 

Check the link and see if there's an REI in your area - seeing these units side-by-side is a worthwhile proposition; the improved/brighter display on the HCx units is easily seen.

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I've been looking into getting my first hand held GPS and I've been torn between the Vista HCx and the Gpsmap 60 CSx. Based on my research, the features and performance are very similar.

 

I've read in this forum that the quad-helix antennas generally work better in tree cover. From an antenna design perspective. This is not generally true. The units have two different form factors and sizes, so it's not fair to compare the two antenna designs that way.

 

Since I was more worried about the display and UI, I went to REI to check out the units side by side myself. I must say, the brightness and clarity of the Vista HCx is very noticable compared tot he 60 CSx. The joystick and side buttons of the HCx definitely take some getting used to. I'm not sure if it was the way the unit in the store was configured, but I found the Vista HCx to be more accurate with direction and/or rendering my orientation on the map. We calibrated both compasses for kicks and I held both units and rotated in a circle outside the store on the sidewalk. The bearing arrow on the Vista HCx rotated, while the 60 CSx just moved around a bit and drifted.

 

Granted, I didn't take the demo units out on a hike, I'm confident based on my anecdotal evidence and the forum reports that the Vista HCx is on par with the 60 CSx. Since the Vista HCx has the much brighter screen and smaller size, I decided to go with that.

 

I'll give some field results as soon as my unit arrives and I've taken it out on a hike.

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Hi there!

 

The Etrex Legend and Vista HCx has the feature Velocity: 0.1 meter/sec (steady state) however the GPSMAP 60 Cx has Velocity: 0.05 meter/sec (steady state). Does anyone know what is the meaning of this?

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You can see a good comparison of the coverage and brightness if you use babelfish to translate this page then it appears that the HCx is brighter at 50% than the 60CSx is at 100%!

 

You can also clearly see that the HCx is covering more of the map.

 

WOW, FANTASTIC find. Thank you. :)

 

Looks like I do prefer the larger map even though it shows less but it is still larger. The poorer reception alarms me on the 60 while the measuring issues with HCx are troubling too. The lack of alarms or beeps that the 60/76 has and the Vista lacks is making me lean toward the 60/76 but darn, the reception. This is not easy.

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