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ImJustAGirl

Garmin GPSMAP 60CSx vs eTrex Vista HCx

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I have an old eTrex Vista and want to upgrade, but can't decide.

 

I can't find much difference between the 60CSx an Vista HCx - except the price.

 

Any thoughts?

 

Thanks

Mary

Edited by ImJustAGirl

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:anibad:

I have similar questions. I was using (borrowing) a Vista CX, up until I recently bought a 60CSX, so I have been researching it to make sure I bought the right one. I have not found anyone who has tested the two side by side yet, but as the Vista HCX's become available, I am sure someone will. But this is what I have learned so far: The Vista HCX has a patch antenna, and the 60 CSX has a quad-helix antenna. Quad-helix is supposed to work better in heavy tree cover, and the patch works better next to rock walls and canyons. However, the 60 CSX has the ability to attach an external patch antenna, which should have better reception than either built-in antenna. So I believe you can have both on the 60 CSX. Also, the 60CSX has a larger screen, which helps for car navigation. I think the buttons on the 60 are a little more user friendly, being right on the front and labeled well. For example, when you want to find something (such as a waypoint, geocache, address, etc...) on the Vista you have to press the page button to the main menu, scroll to “find”, click the rocker bar and then you have your options of what to find. On the 60 CSX, you simply press the “find” button on the front, and you are brought right to your options. This works the same for marking waypoints too. It is nice having the “Mark” button right on front versus scrolling through the menu to get to the “mark” setting in the Vista.

 

I have recently read some other blogs about users of the new Vista HCX, and there are some bugs such as the WAAS defaults to “disable” as soon as you turn it off. It does not hold the enable setting for whatever reason. There has also been some difficulty with the unit not acquiring the satellites if you turn it off, and then on right away. You have to wait about 10 minutes before you turn it back on again. I am sure Garmin will come up with a firmware update to fix these bugs as they become known.

 

I did ask a guy at a local sporting good store, and he said the 60 series is a more rugged and built better than the Etrex Vista series. I do think that if Garmin wants to sell the 60 CSX for $100 more than the Vista HCX, they will need to do some creative marketing to point out the differences.

 

So I may just be trying to talk myself into why I bought the unit, (Best price I found was at shipdog.com- $331.00 total, shipping included.) But I believe I am happy with it. I will patiently wait until someone has compared the two side by side!

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Good choice tiamegs. I was in the same dilemma 2 years ago then last year and again this year. Why the wait? Because we got twins 2 years ago and I knew I wouldn't have much time to start Geocaching but I kept reading here. All I know is that the 60CSx was a favorite for many users.

 

Now 2 years later and I'm seriously looking to buying one and finally start geocaching. I even started to work on a Geocaching page for my website. I beleive the twins will more be able to follow and enjoy treasure hunting next year when they will be 3 years old but I have more free time now to go by myself.

 

Again I'm in a dilemma because I would like a unit that doesn't exist now. I would like something similar to a nuvi for car navigation voice prompted, I like the MP3 player and that all audio can be sent on FM. Then I would like the unit to be removable from a craddle and have all Geocaching abilities like a 60CSx or Vista HCx have. When out of craddle, I'd like it to run on AA batteries for cheap and easy replacement.

 

Anyway, I'm now carefully reading here about the Vista HCx just like you. I think I would go for the Vista to save the money because I plan to sell it maybe next year when my dream unit will be available. I'm pretty sure we will see multi-touch unit soon now that the iPhone popularized it. I was disapointed today when I read the issue with the new H series (Vista, Rino). Hopefully Garmin will be quick to answer. From the past I would say we may hear from them soon, I've seen report from people who emailed them with good response time. But it takes much longer for firmware fix.

Edited by Rhialto

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I just made the same move.. from my old Etrex Vista to the 60CSx. Couldn't be any happier. Spent the last few days doing some caches in poor signal locations, and never lost co-ords.

 

You can run a side by side comparison at Garmin for features.

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I just made the same move.. from my old Etrex Vista to the 60CSx. Couldn't be any happier. Spent the last few days doing some caches in poor signal locations, and never lost co-ords.

 

You can run a side by side comparison at Garmin for features.

 

I did the side by side comparison and it really didn't tell me the differences between the two.

 

I will 'try' and wait unitl the new Vista comes out and see what the response is.

 

Thanks for the responses!

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AFAIK, the only difference is form factor (the 60 is larger, button placement, click stick versus push pad, etc.), screen size and antenna type (the 60 has quad helix instead of patch).

 

With SiRFIII chip set, the antenna difference shouldn't matter much. The size and button arrangement is largely a matter of personal preference. That pretty much leaves screen size.

 

In terms of functionality, I don't think that there are any material differences.

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<snip>

 

I did ask a guy at a local sporting good store, and he said the 60 series is a more rugged and built better than the Etrex Vista series. I do think that if Garmin wants to sell the 60 CSX for $100 more than the Vista HCX, they will need to do some creative marketing to point out the differences.

I have the Vista C and might, in a few months, when the inevitable right-after-release-bugs are worked out, upgrade to the Vista HCx. ;)

 

I prefer the small size of my Vista C and prefer the action of the Click Stick compared to the 60 Cx/CSx.

 

As for durability, I dropped my Vista C from my pack when I was near the edge of a 150' dropoff. The GPSr bounced once, twice, and then flew into the air.

 

When we found it at the bottom, the neoprene case was off of it, it had a few new dings, and it was still on! :D

 

I'd say that is pretty good durability . . . B)

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<snip>

 

I did ask a guy at a local sporting good store, and he said the 60 series is a more rugged and built better than the Etrex Vista series. I do think that if Garmin wants to sell the 60 CSX for $100 more than the Vista HCX, they will need to do some creative marketing to point out the differences.

I have the Vista C and might, in a few months, when the inevitable right-after-release-bugs are worked out, upgrade to the Vista HCx. :D

 

I prefer the small size of my Vista C and prefer the action of the Click Stick compared to the 60 Cx/CSx.

 

As for durability, I dropped my Vista C from my pack when I was near the edge of a 150' dropoff. The GPSr bounced once, twice, and then flew into the air.

 

When we found it at the bottom, the neoprene case was off of it, it had a few new dings, and it was still on! :D

 

I'd say that is pretty good durability . . . :D

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AFAIK, the only difference is form factor (the 60 is larger, button placement, click stick versus push pad, etc.), screen size and antenna type (the 60 has quad helix instead of patch).

 

With SiRFIII chip set, the antenna difference shouldn't matter much. The size and button arrangement is largely a matter of personal preference. That pretty much leaves screen size.

 

Well - i own 2 devices with exactly the same Sirf III chip set. And there is MUCH difference between them.

The GPSMap 60cx has a really good reception while the reception with the SAME CHIPSET in my Laptop i quite bad. So an antenna makes a BIG difference.

 

It would be interesting to see side by side comparison of the reception of an extre hcx VS an gpsmap 60cx.

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AFAIK, the only difference is form factor (the 60 is larger, button placement, click stick versus push pad, etc.), screen size and antenna type (the 60 has quad helix instead of patch).

 

With SiRFIII chip set, the antenna difference shouldn't matter much. The size and button arrangement is largely a matter of personal preference. That pretty much leaves screen size.

 

Well - i own 2 devices with exactly the same Sirf III chip set. And there is MUCH difference between them.

The GPSMap 60cx has a really good reception while the reception with the SAME CHIPSET in my Laptop i quite bad. So an antenna makes a BIG difference.

 

It would be interesting to see side by side comparison of the reception of an extre hcx VS an gpsmap 60cx.

 

My 60 CSX Instantly locks on the Satellites inside my house. The Vista CX never did that. (I borrowed one for a while.) I even tried inside my car, in my tuck under garage with the door closed, and it was able to acquire the satellites. It took a little longer, but I was amazed it could even get a signal. I have a satellite radio in my car, and I have no reception in my garage. So far I am impressed with the antenna and he Sirf III chip!

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It isn't fair to compare the 60CSX to the Vista CX, which has no SiRFIII chipset (or to a laptop with a SiRF III chip but an unknow antenna). The fair test would be a 60CSx to a Vista HCx.

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It isn't fair to compare the 60CSX to the Vista CX, which has no SiRFIII chipset (or to a laptop with a SiRF III chip but an unknow antenna). The fair test would be a 60CSx to a Vista HCx.

I agree. I'm sure it will be done when HCx will be more available.

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I agree that you can't compare the Vista CX with the 60 CSX, I don't think I was comparing them in that way, I was just pointing out that the Sirf III chip really does make a difference, and it sounds like not all Sirf III chips work the same in different units, but it appears to work great in the 60 CSX- Some people can get reception in their house with the Vista CX, I could not, but I can with the 60 CSX. The chipset and the antenna really improves the reception. I am planning on buying a second unit for the family, and that will be the Vista HCX. I can't wait to see how that one works!

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:rolleyes:

I have similar questions. I was using (borrowing) a Vista CX, up until I recently bought a 60CSX, so I have been researching it to make sure I bought the right one. I have not found anyone who has tested the two side by side yet, but as the Vista HCX's become available, I am sure someone will. But this is what I have learned so far: The Vista HCX has a patch antenna, and the 60 CSX has a quad-helix antenna. Quad-helix is supposed to work better in heavy tree cover, and the patch works better next to rock walls and canyons. However, the 60 CSX has the ability to attach an external patch antenna, which should have better reception than either built-in antenna. So I believe you can have both on the 60 CSX. Also, the 60CSX has a larger screen, which helps for car navigation. I think the buttons on the 60 are a little more user friendly, being right on the front and labeled well. For example, when you want to find something (such as a waypoint, geocache, address, etc...) on the Vista you have to press the page button to the main menu, scroll to “find”, click the rocker bar and then you have your options of what to find. On the 60 CSX, you simply press the “find” button on the front, and you are brought right to your options. This works the same for marking waypoints too. It is nice having the “Mark” button right on front versus scrolling through the menu to get to the “mark” setting in the Vista.

 

I have recently read some other blogs about users of the new Vista HCX, and there are some bugs such as the WAAS defaults to “disable” as soon as you turn it off. It does not hold the enable setting for whatever reason. There has also been some difficulty with the unit not acquiring the satellites if you turn it off, and then on right away. You have to wait about 10 minutes before you turn it back on again. I am sure Garmin will come up with a firmware update to fix these bugs as they become known.

 

I did ask a guy at a local sporting good store, and he said the 60 series is a more rugged and built better than the Etrex Vista series. I do think that if Garmin wants to sell the 60 CSX for $100 more than the Vista HCX, they will need to do some creative marketing to point out the differences.

 

So I may just be trying to talk myself into why I bought the unit, (Best price I found was at shipdog.com- $331.00 total, shipping included.) But I believe I am happy with it. I will patiently wait until someone has compared the two side by side!

I just want to comment on a few things that were said in the above post for clarification purposed. FYI, I just received my Vista HCx yesterday (I'm upgrading from a +/- 5 year old Vista).

 

1. According to the "Vista HCx mini review" thread, Garmin is aware of the WAAS issue and I assume they are currently working on a fix.

 

2. The power issue has been confirmed as an isolated incident for one forum users unit. My unit does not have any power on problems and I haven't heard of any more people having this issue.

 

3. You do not have to scroll through the main menu to use the "Find" function. Simply hold down the MENU/FIND and the Find menu will appear.

 

4. Again, you do not have to scroll through the main menu to "Mark" a waypoint. Just hold down the rocker button to mark a waypoint.

 

The Vista HCx is designed to be operated with one hand, which makes it ideal for driving (that was a joke :D ). Seriously though, if you're looking for a unit to be used mostly in a car and sometimes on the trail, the 60CSx is probably the better choice (larger screen, buttons on the front, etc). But if you're going to be walking, hiking, or biking... I suggest the Vista HCx due to it's superior battery specs, one-handed operation, compact size (it's smaller than my cellphone... I know, time to upgrade), and lighter weight.

 

Good luck in your search!

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... if you're looking for a unit to be used mostly in a car and sometimes on the trail, the 60CSx is probably the better choice (larger screen, buttons on the front, etc).

 

... if you're going to be walking, hiking, or biking... I suggest the Vista HCx due to it's superior battery specs, one-handed operation, compact size ...

 

I echo these remarks. I used to have a 60CS and used it for both road and trail. It was very good at both. After it was stolen from my car, I replaced it with a Nuvi 350 and I have ordered a Vista HCx. The Nuvi excels on the road, and the advantages listed above makes the HCx a better choice for me on the trail. I'm chomping at the bit for Offroute.com to send me mine!

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Who knows that the Vista H series will even have a Sirf chip? All I've read, and heard from Garmin, is that it will be a "high sensitivity" chip. I'm quite certain it will not be a Sirf chip, or they would explicitly say so.

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MediaTek

 

Here are some comparement pics.

http://www.naviboard.de/vb/showthread.php?t=21730

my conclusion for reception: the HCX is equal or even better to the CSX.

Here is a comparison between the two chips.

 

http://www.gpspassion.com/forumsen/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=67511

 

Note the headline, "MTK Chipset : GPS power of SiRFstarIII, 50% power use." That may explain the difference in battery life (60SCx = 18 hours, Vista HCx = 25 hours).

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Note the headline, "MTK Chipset : GPS power of SiRFstarIII, 50% power use." That may explain the difference in battery life (60SCx = 18 hours, Vista HCx = 25 hours).

 

I remember a year ago a post I wrote about the fact the the SiRFstarIII was now available in the LT flavor (less power hungry) and was curious if Garmin will use it but we never heard about it. Too bad, it was 50% less hungry.

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FYI... the power up problem captain454 was having with his unit (mentioned in some of the posts above) was solved with a hard reset. See below:

 

"Just wanted to let you know, the "hard reset" fixed the on/off problem, so everything's OK now!" - captain454

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"Just wanted to let you know, the "hard reset" fixed the on/off problem, so everything's OK now!" - captain454

But the WAAS problem folks are experiencing is still there, right? I am thinking of getting one, but don't want to wait forever for firmware updates from Garmin, particularly if it turns out to be something more serious.

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But the WAAS problem folks are experiencing is still there, right? I am thinking of getting one, but don't want to wait forever for firmware updates from Garmin, particularly if it turns out to be something more serious.

WAAS problem is known from Garmin, they are working on it and a new firmware will be ready in the next few days weeks. I know Garmin is not extremly fast about firmware but they need to test it also.

 

About the "something more serious" I doubt, I would be really surprised that this cannot be solved by a new firmware.

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About the "something more serious" I doubt, I would be really surprised that this cannot be solved by a new firmware.

I share your hope, as I like the form factor of Vista/Legend for hiking.

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"Just wanted to let you know, the "hard reset" fixed the on/off problem, so everything's OK now!" - captain454

But the WAAS problem folks are experiencing is still there, right? I am thinking of getting one, but don't want to wait forever for firmware updates from Garmin, particularly if it turns out to be something more serious.

Yes, the WAAS problem still exists, but it's not really that big a deal. I just enter the menu when I power up and check to see if the WAAS is enabled (half the time it is, half the time it isn't). If it's not, I turn it on. Simple as that. The high sensitivity chip is so fast that even when I have to scroll through the menus and enable it, I'm still ready to navigate much faster than my last unit (Vista).

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I just enter the menu when I power up and check to see if the WAAS is enabled (half the time it is, half the time it isn't). If it's not, I turn it on. Simple as that.

I must have misunderstood it, then. I thought there was no easy way to restore the WAAS lock. In that case, I just see it as a minor nuisance, not a serious functional issue.

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Hiho,

 

Just a word on WAAS/EGNOS with the Vista HCx (and imo the complete "H"-Series):

 

I had *never* an EGNOS Satellite in use, even if i switch WAAS on and go to a position where i definitly have a line of sight to Sat Nr. 33 and 39! In the same position my GPSMAP 60 has no problems!

 

So the real issue ist *not* the deactivation of WAAS/EGNOS after an PowerOff/On. The issue is, that WAAS/EGNOS *did not work* (at least not with EGNOS Satellite 33 and 39)!

 

Regards

 

Atti

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Hiho,

 

Just a word on WAAS/EGNOS with the Vista HCx (and imo the complete "H"-Series):

 

I had *never* an EGNOS Satellite in use, even if i switch WAAS on and go to a position where i definitly have a line of sight to Sat Nr. 33 and 39! In the same position my GPSMAP 60 has no problems!

 

So the real issue ist *not* the deactivation of WAAS/EGNOS after an PowerOff/On. The issue is, that WAAS/EGNOS *did not work* (at least not with EGNOS Satellite 33 and 39)!

 

Regards

 

Atti

Atti, that seems odd because I have never had a problem receiving a WAAS signal with my unit after I enable it. Maybe a problem/setting with your GPSr?

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Atti, that seems odd because I have never had a problem receiving a WAAS signal with my unit after I enable it. Maybe a problem/setting with your GPSr?

Could be a regional problem (Europe); as he mentioned EGNOS.

 

@Atti: sometimes i got Egnos, but while it's still in test mode, you can't say exactly when you'll get the signal and when you won't. There's a page on the (AFAIR) ESA's website which tells about the times signals are transmitted.

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Since a couple of recievers did not have problems (eTrex, Geko 201, GPAMAP 60, Explorist 100) using EGNOS signals it yould be *very* abnormal the this is a regional issue. Maybe it is an issue with EGNOS.

 

Since EGNOS is fully deployed and pre-operational the signal is send continuous. According to the EGNOS news-letters, the signal is *NOT* a testsignal! - But this doesn't matter, since other revievers use the signal - it must be an bug in the Vista firmware!

 

Atti

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What is the maximum waypoint length on the new Vista? I've converted many of my waypoints to 14 characters to take advantage of the 60Cx.

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Interesting comparisons.

 

It's worth pointing out that although the 60 screen is slightly larger this is due to slightly larger pixels, not more pixels. Which is like (although exaggerated) comparing a 24" television with a 17" computer monitor. The television is bigger but the computer monitor is effectively bigger because it can be viewed much closer.

 

So the 60 screen is larger, but coarser. Just hold the HCx one centimeter closer and it will be the same.

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bad entry please delete

Edited by reej

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bad entry please delete

Edited by reej

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Gallet what is the price difference in your country between the 60 en HCx?

 

I have a seperate GPS receiver with MKT chipset for my PDA and i love the way it work.

Quick fix, Stable receive, 8-11 satelites.

So that is the reason i probably buy the HCx.

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I lost my old Vista CSx unfortunately so I am trying to decide whether to get the new Vista HCx or the 60CSx.

 

One thing I really liked on my Vista was I could have the unit powered down and it could still record barometric data, which was very useful as I took it snowboarding and this would record the number of runs I took and also the total vertical feet I made that day (whether it was on or off). Does the 60CSx do this as well as I haven't been able to locate that information yet?

 

I would also really like to get a final call on which chipset and antennae-type gets the best reception. I ride under tree cover often and also hike in canyons as well as under tree cover so reception is obviously very important.

 

Thanks!!

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I would also really like to get a final call on which chipset and antennae-type gets the best reception. I ride under tree cover often and also hike in canyons as well as under tree cover so reception is obviously very important.

You'll find this is pretty irrelevant, as both can hold a signal almost anywhere, including indoors in many buildings. It's a bit like saying I'm not buying a Porche because a Ferrari is slightly faster. Hey, they're both easily fast enough for the job. To carry on the analogy, the old etrex range is like a Lada (replace with US car that everyone ridicules).

I live in the forest and walk in the mountains all the time. I have never lost a signal on my CSx in 18 months. I had a old yellow eTrex before that and it barely ever got a signal in the forest. :lol: My track logs were a few dots and then a big gap. It had to go. :laughing:

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I always wondered how double posts came about - and now I know. Sorry, the web site flipped out on me.

Edited by SidAndBob

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Thanks a lot SidandBob for the reply. =) Well... I am getting the gist that both are VERY good under dense coverage now.... so I did like the feeling of my VistaCSx... and I would consider getting the new HCx.. however I am now leery because of this Trip Data issue/bug at low speeds. I will inevitably be going on hikes where accurate distance data will be useful..... and if it isn't, then that will just suck, for lack of better words... =P They *should* get it fixed with new firmware updates but I have been reading some lack of confidence is out there after the most recent firmware update that was supposed to fix it but didn't??

 

Any thoughts on the matter??

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Thanks a lot SidandBob for the reply. =) Well... I am getting the gist that both are VERY good under dense coverage now.... so I did like the feeling of my VistaCSx... and I would consider getting the new HCx.. however I am now leery because of this Trip Data issue/bug at low speeds. I will inevitably be going on hikes where accurate distance data will be useful..... and if it isn't, then that will just suck, for lack of better words... =P They *should* get it fixed with new firmware updates but I have been reading some lack of confidence is out there after the most recent firmware update that was supposed to fix it but didn't??

 

Any thoughts on the matter??

 

I upgraded my 60C for a Vista HCx, and for the money difference, couldnt be happier. I like the smaller form factor, and I ordered the etrex case from Amazon and it appears that they are stocking the new cases that fit the HCx, so all in all I am a happy customer (although I havnet been caching with it yet)

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For me the difference was size. If you use your GPSr in urban areas you may want to go with the Vista HCx. It is easier to look inconspicuous with it and will fit in your pocket. The 60CSx is much larger but more rugged and better antenna if you are in the woods alot. I ended up going with the Vista HCx because of size.

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Great,

Thanks for your thoughts people. It's positive to hear you are happy so far with your HCx also. I believe I will be going with the HCx as well. I just have to hope (hope hope HOPE) that the odometer issue will, in fact, be fixed with an update soon. I guess ultimatly it doesn't affect the primary function of the device... but it would be very nice to truely know how far I am hiking at the time of the hike and not after the fact!

 

Thanks again!!

Edited by dsimmelink06

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Hi,

 

Can anyone tell me how do these two units compare in terms of performance? I just purchased a Vista HCx GPSr and I find its drawing refresh rate quite slow.

I might be wrong, but I think that a GPSMap 60CSx unit that I tested was faster when redrawing the map while rotating the unit than my Vista HCx does.

 

Is there really a difference in terms of processing hardware between the two units, or is it just me?:D

 

Best regards,

Norberto

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Hi,

 

Is there really a difference in terms of processing hardware between the two units, or is it just me?:D

 

Best regards,

Norberto

 

Completely different hardware. The 60CSx uses the SiRF Star III chip and the Vista HCx uses MediaTek's latest chip. The two chips seem to be similiar in performance, but few side-by-side comparrisons have been performed, and none that I've seen discussed refresh rate. I suggest you check the settings to make sure the power saving mode is turned off on both units, and that the level of detail shown is comparable on both models (apples to apples).

 

GW

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Glenn, you're talking about the GPS chipset, and about that I do know that both models have different electronics.

I'm talking about the other hardware that makes the device... it must have a processor that handles every task besides processing the GPS signal, such as drawing on the screen, processing user input, etc.

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obviously there is processor, screen and access speed differences..........one is based upon a design brought about two years ago and another is within the past 7 months........ive noticed that my CSX sometimes has issues processing the updating/switching screens since I first bought it, while I have seen no such issue with my HCX so far

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obviously there is processor, screen and access speed differences..........one is based upon a design brought about two years ago and another is within the past 7 months........ive noticed that my CSX sometimes has issues processing the updating/switching screens since I first bought it, while I have seen no such issue with my HCX so far

 

But accordingly to what you said, one would expect that the Vista HCx would be faster than the 60 CSx.

 

I suppose that in the end it's just my impression and this isn't really an issue. Nevertheless as soon as I get the opportunity I'll do a side by side comparison in order to clear this out.

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ive noticed that my CSX sometimes has issues processing the updating/switching screens since I first bought it, while I have seen no such issue with my HCX so far

But accordingly to what you said, one would expect that the Vista HCx would be faster than the 60 CSx.

 

I think that is exactly what Grateful is saying.

 

I have a 60cx and think it's fine.

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One thing I really liked on my Vista was I could have the unit powered down and it could still record barometric data, which was very useful as I took it snowboarding and this would record the number of runs I took and also the total vertical feet I made that day (whether it was on or off). Does the 60CSx do this as well as I haven't been able to locate that information yet?

 

I know it's been a month, but no one answered this question. For those who may care, the answer is that neither the 60CSx nor the Vista HCx will record barometric data while powered down. I didn't need it, but it's a shame for those who did that Garmin dropped the feature in newer models.

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