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handheld purchase help!


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hi everyone,


I am having trouble deciding on which garmin unit to buy. I have never owned a GPS b4 and plan on using it while snowmobiling, mountain biking and for directions while hauling our fifth wheel around. So that being said, I am planning on making a purchase tomorrow for an upcoming snowmobile trip.


I will also be purchasing the garmin city navigator maps for use while in the car.


I havent done any geocaching yet, but look forward to it. I have 3 kids and we are camping 12-14 weekends thru-out the summer, so it sounds like it would be a lot of fun.


The units that i am looking at is:


etrek vista HCx - I like the size (for mounting on the bike), although I am concerned about its visibility driving. Also I am curious about its reception in the car.


colorado 300 - leary about buying something new on the market and also the $200 price differance. Also, there is a lot of threads here with problems.


If you have any other suggestions for a differant unit, please let me know.


thanks in advance,


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I just bought the Legend HCx (didn't need the compass and altimeter). Picked it up for $198 from Amazon. So far very happy with it. I bought Topo 2008 for hiking/backpacking and picked up the City Navigator and very happy with how well it works in the car. No problems seeing the screen in the car. Now granted it is not a Nuvi meant for the car, but it works showing me where I am and in testing has done well with directions and rerouting when I purposely miss a turn. I also looked at the 60 CSx but the larger size and decreased battery life is what convinced me to get the Legend.

Edited by HiknVA
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I can speak for the Vista HCx; it works great in the car and on the trail. I have Topo 2008 and City Navigator loaded on the Vista and they both work well on it. I also have a nuvi 200W for the car, but in the Jeep I just use the Vista because of the abuse. The Vista does a good job a navigation for a hand held and the way it displays the turns works well and is not too cumbersome to use while driving. It's no nuvi with a huge touch screen but not bad at all.

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thanks for the info so far. It seems like the vista would be a decent fit. the only other unit would be the 76csx. but it is also a larger unit. walmart seems to have very good prices, i noticed someone mentioning that on an earlier post. $75 cheaper than REI....


please let me know what you think....



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Have you looked at the 60CSx? It's a great unit. The screen is a little larger than the eTrex line and is easier to read while driving. The battery life is not equal to the Vista HCx, but it's not bad.


The user interface of the 60CSx is a bit easier to use compared to the Vista...the 60 has more dedicated function buttons.


The small form factor of the Vista is really nice, especially for out-of-the-car excursions.


I think your decision should be based on the majority of your usage. In-car navigation or outdoor activities? If your main use will be navigation then I would go with the 60. If outdoor activities are the main use then the Vista might be the better choice.



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Thanks for all of the advice, I ended up purchasing the vista w/ the garmin street software.


So far I am very impressed with it. It worked great routing us to a family vacation at Kalahari (manually inputting the address) and then to the UP for some snowmobiling with friends.


I also used it while on the trail snowmobiling, never lost a signal and it was nice always knowing the cross roads. Plus being able to look at the tracks and all of the other info was great. I found out that my snowmobile was off about 7-8 mph (speedo said 85ish and the max speed the gps said was upper 70's).


I only made one mistake and that was accidentally dumping the maps when I was transfering the tracks off the unit to my computer. The next day we were out about 100 miles into the trails and I wanted to check something and I noticed that there were no maps loaded. OOPS!


I am looking forward to getting to know the unit forward and backwards. I looked up some geocaches near the house and will try to get out with the kids this weekend and explore a little. We are getting fresh snow, so it should be a lot of fun.


The next thing that I want to figure out is how to install the tracks over sattelite images.........


I will never be with out it, I dont know why I waited so long to get one?



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