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will a better GPSr fix my life?


paleolith
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No, this is not a "which GPSr question". I'm pretty sure I want a Garmin etrex Vista Hcx, though I'm waiting until I can go to a store and hold one in my hot little hand.

 

But first ... am I expecting too much? I don't think so from what I read, but I haven't encountered my problems described. I have a Magellan eXplorist 210. Cheapest thing I could find ($100) when I wanted to try out geocaching but didn't know whether I'd get interested.

 

The problem I have isn't just inaccuracy, but inconsistent inaccuracy. GPSr will be pointing me somewhere totally unlikely. So I'll reboot it. Sometimes that will point me to the cache -- 100' away (when previously it said I had a 24' error with WAAS). Other times it'll point me 100' to some other unlikely place (still with 20' error and WAAS). A week ago it pointed me to three such dispersed locations, and when I went home and looked at the Google satellite maps I could see exactly where the cache really was (that I never found), and it was in yet another place, again well outside the error radius of any place the %^$^&* eXplorist 210 was showing me.

 

Once it has locked in to a frame of reference it seldom shifts. In other words, if I can tell that it's wrong by 100', then I can walk a couple of miles through varied terrain, or just stand still for an hour, and it'll still be wrong by the same amount. Reboot it and it might still be wrong, but more likely either correct itself or be wrong in a different direction.

 

I can deal with fuzziness -- I know that GPS isn't going to make me sit down on every cache. But I'd like for 95% of the caches to be within the error radius that the GPSr is showing me, which is my understanding of how it's supposed to work.

 

So what kind of error is this? Do other 210s have this problem? Other eXplorists? Other GPSrs? Is my problem unique? As a software engineer with some experience in numerical software, this strikes me as a software error, a case of an iteration getting stuck in a local minimum that isn't a global minimum. But what do I know ...

 

Edward

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So what kind of error is this? Do other 210s have this problem? Other eXplorists? Other GPSrs? Is my problem unique? As a software engineer with some experience in numerical software, this strikes me as a software error, a case of an iteration getting stuck in a local minimum that isn't a global minimum. But what do I know ...

 

Edward

 

I have an eXplorist 400. Out of the 8 finds I've made so far, I think about 17' was the farthest it has been off. Usually reads like 3'-5' at the cache. Maybe yours has a problem. I'd agree with sanramonhunter, and try updating the firmware before anything else.

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So what kind of error is this? Do other 210s have this problem?

 

I'm not sure if it's hardware or software, but I have a 210 and don't have the same issues. However, I just got home (KS) from a short trip to Pennsylvania and noticed that my rate of error was greater in PA than I notice in KS. I don't know if it was the geography or the fact that my horizons are much better in KS than in the valleys around State College. Still, I have gotten better constellations in downtown Lawrence (17') than I got in a field in PA (25-30') or even on a hilltop (27').

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So what kind of error is this? Do other 210s have this problem?

 

I'm not sure if it's hardware or software, but I have a 210 and don't have the same issues. However, I just got home (KS) from a short trip to Pennsylvania and noticed that my rate of error was greater in PA than I notice in KS. I don't know if it was the geography or the fact that my horizons are much better in KS than in the valleys around State College. Still, I have gotten better constellations in downtown Lawrence (17') than I got in a field in PA (25-30') or even on a hilltop (27').

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...So what kind of error is this? Do other 210s have this problem? Other eXplorists? Other GPSrs? Is my problem unique? As a software engineer with some experience in numerical software, this strikes me as a software error, a case of an iteration getting stuck in a local minimum that isn't a global minimum. But what do I know ...

 

Edward

 

It's a Your GPS is messed up kind of error. Try the firmware update. Failing that have Magellan Warrantee it. It's not acting like a GPS should.

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