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Delorme PN-40

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Delorme has announced the PN-40 release date and price: October 15, $399.95.
For comparison, that's $200 less than the similarly equipped Colorado 400T or Oregon 400T, obviously no High Res display. Not possible to make an apples to apples comparison, but I'll bet its readable in bright sunlight w/o the backlight.

 

I would think that it's more apples to apples than apples to oranges. They all fit into the same market category. Anyway, if they don't botch the release like the Triton or Colorado models, and the price point is less, I would think there would be alot of GPS nerds like me switching over and not missing their "old" models at all. I'm so tired of innacuracy and drift etc. with the new Garmin's I'm ready to trust in my GPS again... in a Delorme? So be it.

Edited by yogazoo

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Observations from my PN-20, presumed to be the same on the PN-40:

 

Direct sunlight is the best viewing condition for the display.

 

Waypoint averaging is an option.

 

There's no alarm clock feature on the PN-20 (nor a barometer!) so I can't say what the PN-40 will do until we see them in October.

 

Direct comparisons *are* hard to make, although I do regard the PN-40 about as direct competition to the CO/OR as there is right now. I'd note that the $400 PN-40 price includes nation-wide 1:24000 topo maps that allow autorouting (satisfactory if not challenged too much), and for another $29 one can download unlimited imagery (USGS, satellite, aerial, NOAA) for a year.

 

If one can live without the larger screen size of the CO/OR, I think a lot of people will find the PN-40 to be a good value.

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Delorme has announced the PN-40 release date and price: October 15, $399.95.
Since I have almost no long term (>2-weeks) memory, is this the same or higher than the PN-20 in Jan`07?

 

Waypoint averaging is an option.
Why is this special, my eTrex will do WA, won't both the Colo and Oregon do WA?

 

There's no alarm clock feature on the PN-20
My eTrex has one and it works well, but only used it a few times, so either way.

 

If the PN-40 is as good as it appears, then Garmin will no longer be the 800-pound Gorilla of handhelds.

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Waypoint averaging is an option.
Why is this special, my eTrex will do WA, won't both the Colo and Oregon do WA?

 

CO/OR do not support waypoint averaging.

 

GO$Rs

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Delorme has announced the PN-40 release date and price: October 15, $399.95.
Since I have almost no long term (>2-weeks) memory, is this the same or higher than the PN-20 in Jan`07?

 

I know whereof you speak. :anicute:

 

The PN-20 had several packages that included various accessories, and thus several prices. But the base package, which I presume to be comparable to the quoted PN-40 pricing, was $299 $370 (per Benjamin's correction below...were we talking about memory difficulties?)

Edited by embra

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When the PN-20 came out think that the three tier pricing was $369.99, $429.99 and $469.99 (These are just off the top of my head and may not be 100% accurate but are very close).

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Whoops, you're right Ben. I guess the recent sale price cemented itself in my head.

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........ and for another $29 one can download unlimited imagery (USGS, satellite, aerial, NOAA) for a year.....

 

OK, embra, now you've gone too far, tellin' 'em about the unlimited imagery downloads for $29 per year. :anicute:

 

I really love those Colored Aerials and I'm a fixin' to download plenty many bytes come Oct 15th, but now that you've blabbed it, the internet will be all jammed up and......................... :cute:

 

Seriously, though, I suspect that some folks will be giving UP on dial UP to UPgrade to cable service in October.

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... but now that you've blabbed it, the internet will be all jammed up and......................... :cute:

 

Al Gore is going to be pissed that you're going to slow down his internets :anicute::wub:

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... but now that you've blabbed it, the internet will be all jammed up and......................... :anicute:

 

Al Gore is going to be pissed that you're going to slow down his internets :o:cute:

Nah, I must be off his radar. :wub: He hasn't nailed me for my carbon footprint when I drive my Hemi around. :D

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CO/OR do not support waypoint averaging.
That's an amazing omission on Garmin's part.

 

From my perspective, the only way Garmin can justify the CO/OR exorbitant price is its GC mode(s) and generating an accurate waypoint is an essential part of the GC experience. In using my eTrex, use of waypoint averaging with cut the location error in half or better. Such a cheap feature to add, no hardware, just firmware. Go figure.

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Screenshot?

 

Does the PN-20/40 have an internal screenshot mode? On my eTrex, I have to use Garmin's xImage from a PC.

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CO/OR do not support waypoint averaging.
That's an amazing omission on Garmin's part.

Waypoint Averaging over a period of days can produce really great coordinates (e.g. taking readings on multiple days and then averaging them by hand), but Waypoint Averaging over a period of minutes isn't going to do all that much for you (in my opinion). Your accuracy is only as good as the current satellite constellation configuration, and that changes from day to day. Have there been any studies on waypoints taken with and without averaging (using the same chipset)? I would guess that the results would be at most a difference of +-5ft. I've been wrong before though...

 

--Marky

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I'd sooner have it than not. I've been in some situations where my snapshot has been wrong because the signal jumped at the exact wrong time and I didn't notice it until I was in the lab looking at the way-off coordinates on my computer screen.

 

Just look at the market, ALL GPS's marketed as outdoor handhelds allow you the option of waypoint averaging, All except of course the Colorado and Oregon line from Garmin. Now I would like to think that Garmin knows something everyone else doesn't but I seriously doubt it. Even Garmin has waypoint averaging in all their other outdoor handhelds. Whatever, All the newer lines from the other manufacturers have it and there's nothing keeping me from selling my Colorado and getting something else.

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I'm interested in this waypoint averaging (WA) to improving accuracy and stability? So far I've read everything from minor improvement to huge improvement?

 

I'm also concerned about the smaller screen and resolution of the PN-20 and PN-40 to the Colorado 400t screen I have now. I saw some topo map screen shots of one of the PN's (don't remember which) and at first initial glance at them was not impressed. The lines appeared broken up into segments and I didn't see as much "color" to the terrain or poi icons. Will the PN-40 do shading? Is there any 3D function?

 

Of course, if the accuracy in finding a cache is clearly superior to the Colorado or Oregon then one might live with the PN-40 not looking as "pretty".

 

I suspect the higher price of the Colorado and Oregon is its larger screen and better resolution. Of course this no doubt is what has made backlighting and battery capacity such issues too. For me at least so far I am more often then not turning backlighting up as far as it can go on the CO. Turn it on full bright or turn it off when not needed.

 

On the other side of the geocaching coin I am very interested in autorouting street navigation and finding all manner of things in a strange city. I have not been to impressed with Garmin's City Navigator accuracy and the CO and OR units don't have the traffic recievers built in. Are there _any_ hand-held portable GPSrs that offer traffic updates? Specifically will the PN-40 offer this? For Garmin you have to get into their incredibly complex nuvi series.

 

As far as maps go does Delorme offer a City Navigator equivalent? With a smaller screen and poorer resolution is detail lost for easily locating a gas station or restaurant? Are the maps updated more often and can ceratin areas be manually edited/corrected?

 

If I end up making a break from Garmin I will be visiting Delorme much more closely. In the mean time do you know if street routing on the PN-40 will have any audible element to it? Will it be able to clearly announce, "Turn right on 15th street in 100 feet" or will it beep or will it use an almost inaudible jingle with no volume control like the Colorado and Oregon offer?

 

My kind of dream GPS and dream GPS company:

Portable, rugged, and waterproof to a couple foot depth.

Paperless geocaching.

3-axis compass.

Some means of accurately updating certain map areas as needed.

Autorouting on road or on trail.

Traffic control receiver.

Spoken routing for turns and road conditions with adequate volume and volume control.

Maximum backlighting brightness to be a constant whether using 2.4 V batteries or 5 V external source.

Fully tested (bug free) and working software features to support all of the above.

In house trained technical support that knows exactly what problems the product has and knows exactly what hardware and software engineering is doing to fix any problems.

Accurate and complete reference manuals for the unit and for the map software. Plus tutorials on unit functions.

Screen comes with Invisible Shield already installsed.

Optionals: External battery packs, different kinds of lanyard attachments, and different power cables.

 

[When pigs fly. :wub: ]

Edited by Ratsneve

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There was a lengthy averaging discussion here a while ago... check out this post for details. You are correct though, averaging within a session gives you the best results for that day's conditions. Averaging over multiple days averages the conditions too... It boils down to how much time you have to commit to creating your waypoint. You could post process your data with the right tools and take advantage of some advanced correction techniques if you really wanted to go to the next level.

 

http://forums.Groundspeak.com/GC/index.php...=183097&hl=

 

I average and then revisit to average again if I'm looking to place a cache. I hike a trail on multiple days if I'm looking to update a trail map. Everything else is close enough to get me back there when I need to revisit the location...

 

And to be honest, a lot of the waypoints and tracks that I create come straight off the high res aerial imagery that I load into Topo USA. I can get very close just by placing the point on the imagery before sending to my PN-40.

 

Chip Noble

Team DeLorme

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Hey Chip (from DeLorme),

 

Would you please describe how tracklogs are managed on the PN-40?

 

For example, on the 60CSx you are limited to 20 tracks of 500 points each, whereas the Oregon 400t allows an unknown upper limit of tracklogs of 10,000 points each (where individual tracklogs can be selected and shown on the map via the "Track Manager" on the GPS; no need to use a computer).

 

I would hope the PN-40 is similar to the Oregon 400t in the way tracks are managed on the GPS, including the enhancements that the 400t provides over the 60CSx?

 

Regards,

 

J

Edited by jmedlock

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I'm also concerned about the smaller screen and resolution of the PN-20 and PN-40 to the Colorado 400t screen I have now. I saw some topo map screen shots of one of the PN's (don't remember which) and at first initial glance at them was not impressed. The lines appeared broken up into segments and I didn't see as much "color" to the terrain or poi icons.

Here are a bunch of screen shots.

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CO/OR do not support waypoint averaging.
That's an amazing omission on Garmin's part.

Waypoint Averaging over a period of days can produce really great coordinates (e.g. taking readings on multiple days and then averaging them by hand), but Waypoint Averaging over a period of minutes isn't going to do all that much for you (in my opinion). Your accuracy is only as good as the current satellite constellation configuration, and that changes from day to day. Have there been any studies on waypoints taken with and without averaging (using the same chipset)? I would guess that the results would be at most a difference of +-5ft. I've been wrong before though...

While you are mostly interested in X & Y, I'm mostly interested in Z. If you watch the altimeter reading off the satellite, it can easily vary 30-feet in a matter of minutes. For altitude, WA makes a huge difference.

 

As to X & Y, the GPSr's own reported error does often drop in half over a period of several minutes. Is that meaningful? Or is that just "smoke & mirrors"? Don't know.

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I'm also concerned about the smaller screen and resolution of the PN-20 and PN-40 to the Colorado 400t screen I have now. I saw some topo map screen shots of one of the PN's (don't remember which) and at first initial glance at them was not impressed. The lines appeared broken up into segments and I didn't see as much "color" to the terrain or poi icons.

Here are a bunch of screen shots.

Well, those are the screen shots I was referring too. No doubt it is partly the resolution difference. This is going to be a problem for me--I can feel it. It wouldn't be as important to me now if I wasn't already using and use to the CO screens look and feel.

 

Also, none of those shots show a scale. Is there an option to add a scale bar that varies as you zoom in and out?

 

Can one manually WA with the Colorado by every few minutes marking a waypoint and then just keep the one central to all the others? What is the difference except that WA might be tracking these points invisibly and moving the average point around automatically?

Edited by Ratsneve

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Can one manually WA with the Colorado by every few minutes marking a waypoint and then just keep the one central to all the others?

 

Yeah, and I can find my location on the earth with a paper map and a compass too so why even have a GPS to begin with? Because as technology increases things get easier and I should have to put up with less monkying around.

 

Look you're right, that is a good idea for now, it is a "workable" option, but come on Garmin.

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I suspect the higher price of the Colorado and Oregon is its larger screen and better resolution.
Clearly not. The Nuvi screen is both larger and has more pixels, yet it costs 40% of the CO/OR. This screen comparison should provide ample evidence:

GarminCompare.gif

 

 

My kind of dream GPS and dream GPS company:

Portable, rugged, and waterproof to a couple foot depth.

Paperless geocaching.

3-axis compass.

Some means of accurately updating certain map areas as needed.

Autorouting on road or on trail.

Traffic control receiver.

Spoken routing for turns and road conditions with adequate volume and volume control.

Maximum backlighting brightness to be a constant whether using 2.4 V batteries or 5 V external source.

Fully tested (bug free) and working software features to support all of the above.

In house trained technical support that knows exactly what problems the product has and knows exactly what hardware and software engineering is doing to fix any problems.

Accurate and complete reference manuals for the unit and for the map software. Plus tutorials on unit functions.

Screen comes with Invisible Shield already installsed.

Optionals: External battery packs, different kinds of lanyard attachments, and different power cables.

 

[When pigs fly. :wub: ]

Of course cost is of no significance. :wub:

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I'm also concerned about the smaller screen and resolution of the PN-20 and PN-40 to the Colorado 400t screen I have now. I saw some topo map screen shots of one of the PN's (don't remember which) and at first initial glance at them was not impressed. The lines appeared broken up into segments and I didn't see as much "color" to the terrain or poi icons.

Here are a bunch of screen shots.

Well, those are the screen shots I was referring too. No doubt it is partly the resolution difference. This is going to be a problem for me--I can feel it. It wouldn't be as important to me now if I wasn't already using and use to the CO screens look and feel.

 

Also, none of those shots show a scale. Is there an option to add a scale bar that varies as you zoom in and out?

 

Can one manually WA with the Colorado by every few minutes marking a waypoint and then just keep the one central to all the others? What is the difference except that WA might be tracking these points invisibly and moving the average point around automatically?

The lines appeared broken up into segments
I don't quite understand this? Also the first shot is just a map cut at default levels in a not too hilly area (I was just capturing some screen shots with out going into a whole lot).

 

Also, none of those shots show a scale. Is there an option to add a scale bar that varies as you zoom in and out?
There are three ways to display this. Bar - going to show me feet or miles, Ratio - going to show me 1:24K etc and Zoom - What you see on the screen shots - this is the same zoom level one would see in the Topo mapping program. Edited by benjamin921

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@ Ratsneve :

When I came of age to truly explore my passions @ my own expense (read as 1st big boy job), my passions

leaned toward bicycling, I became soon aware that there's no such thing as "end all, be all". A road bike

for pavement, and a mountain bike for off-road, the X-bikes just compromised too much in one arena to be

effective in the other. GPSrs I suspect are in the same vein, with todays technology, having the best for all

scenarios would be :

 

1) Cost prohibitive for most.

2) Unwieldily complex in operation.

3) Difficult if not impossible to implement effectively

from a hardware/software standpoint.

 

Until I get a new handheld, my eXplorist XL is essentially retired, the reasons being blatantly apparent to anyone

who has been following many GPSr tech. sites. Seemingly Magellan has " _____, and fell back in it".

For street nav., I've been happy and am currently making do with TomTom (Nav 5) on an Palm LifeDrive.

If I were going to upgrade presently, I'd be comparing street nav. units against the TomTom (Nav 6) combo

on an Palm TX as a yardstick. But others, I'm sure, can add better comparative combinations.

For myself, the PN-40 is the only off-road handheld being considered @ this point in time, bar none.

 

Norm

 

'78 Rodriguez R&T

'88 Nishiki Alien

Pontiac Fiero '88 GT 3.4 liter DOHC ( LQ motor NOT stock)

'76 (bobtail) Bronco 351W (street legal, kinda)

Notice, there's (for the most part) no cross vehicles listed

Edited by RRLover

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Sign me up. I'm sold. They included everthing on my wish list.

Let's see... leave the PN-20 on the Mountain Bike, use the PN-40 on the pack? Yeah.

 

Hmmm... TOPO USA 7 included.. I already have Topo USA 7. Maybe new drivers or whatever for the PN-40? Discounted package for current PN-20 / Topo USA 7 owners?

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I suspect the higher price of the Colorado and Oregon is its larger screen and better resolution.
Clearly not. The Nuvi screen is both larger and has more pixels, yet it costs 40% of the CO/OR. This screen comparison should provide ample evidence:
My kind of dream GPS and dream GPS company:

Portable, rugged, and waterproof to a couple foot depth.

Paperless geocaching.

3-axis compass.

Some means of accurately updating certain map areas as needed.

Autorouting on road or on trail.

Traffic control receiver.

Spoken routing for turns and road conditions with adequate volume and volume control.

Maximum backlighting brightness to be a constant whether using 2.4 V batteries or 5 V external source.

Fully tested (bug free) and working software features to support all of the above.

In house trained technical support that knows exactly what problems the product has and knows exactly what hardware and software engineering is doing to fix any problems.

Accurate and complete reference manuals for the unit and for the map software. Plus tutorials on unit functions.

Screen comes with Invisible Shield already installsed.

Optionals: External battery packs, different kinds of lanyard attachments, and different power cables.

 

[When pigs fly. :wub: ]

Of course cost is of no significance. :wub:

It is very puzzling isn't it why Garmin kicks out high priced CO and OR units that are full of bugs while offering other models that maybe only lack being waterproof and having an accessible battery compartment for much less with larger screens. Maybe there is a study going on to see how many "smart people" (myself included) still go out and buy something that looks good on impulse regardless of price or functionality?

 

Before I decide on how much I can afford to pay for this GPS & company you have to find it first. :wub:

 

Phooey! :wub:

Edited by Ratsneve

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Would you please describe how tracklogs are managed on the PN-40?

The PN-40 can hold 10 track logs with 10,000 points in each log. Logs can be recorded by time or by distance interval. You can view one saved track at a time on the PN-40 or download them to Topo USA to analyze them with the Draw and Profile tools available with that product.

 

We're always working to improve the GPS data management tools on the PN-Series devices so keep an eye on forums like this and our forum.delorme.com for more information. Thanks for the question!

 

Chip Noble

Team DeLorme

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Thanks for all the great info Chip!

 

Can you elaborate on the barometer function and whether or not it will record barometric pressure data when the unit is powered off? This is one feature that is very helpful if you are camping and want to see if the weather is improving / getting worse from the data recorded overnight. SO far the Colorado has failed it's users on it's claim to record data when powered off. If the PN-40 will record this data then, for me, the case for the PN-40 has been made.

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I'm interested in this waypoint averaging (WA) to improving accuracy and stability? So far I've read everything from minor improvement to huge improvement?

 

I'm also concerned about the smaller screen and resolution of the PN-20 and PN-40 to the Colorado 400t screen I have now. I saw some topo map screen shots of one of the PN's (don't remember which) and at first initial glance at them was not impressed. The lines appeared broken up into segments and I didn't see as much "color" to the terrain or poi icons. Will the PN-40 do shading? Is there any 3D function?

 

Of course, if the accuracy in finding a cache is clearly superior to the Colorado or Oregon then one might live with the PN-40 not looking as "pretty".

 

I suspect the higher price of the Colorado and Oregon is its larger screen and better resolution. Of course this no doubt is what has made backlighting and battery capacity such issues too. For me at least so far I am more often then not turning backlighting up as far as it can go on the CO. Turn it on full bright or turn it off when not needed.

 

On the other side of the geocaching coin I am very interested in autorouting street navigation and finding all manner of things in a strange city. I have not been to impressed with Garmin's City Navigator accuracy and the CO and OR units don't have the traffic recievers built in. Are there _any_ hand-held portable GPSrs that offer traffic updates? Specifically will the PN-40 offer this? For Garmin you have to get into their incredibly complex nuvi series.

 

As far as maps go does Delorme offer a City Navigator equivalent? With a smaller screen and poorer resolution is detail lost for easily locating a gas station or restaurant? Are the maps updated more often and can ceratin areas be manually edited/corrected?

 

If I end up making a break from Garmin I will be visiting Delorme much more closely. In the mean time do you know if street routing on the PN-40 will have any audible element to it? Will it be able to clearly announce, "Turn right on 15th street in 100 feet" or will it beep or will it use an almost inaudible jingle with no volume control like the Colorado and Oregon offer?

 

My kind of dream GPS and dream GPS company:

Portable, rugged, and waterproof to a couple foot depth.

Paperless geocaching.

3-axis compass.

Some means of accurately updating certain map areas as needed.

Autorouting on road or on trail.

Traffic control receiver.

Spoken routing for turns and road conditions with adequate volume and volume control.

Maximum backlighting brightness to be a constant whether using 2.4 V batteries or 5 V external source.

Fully tested (bug free) and working software features to support all of the above.

In house trained technical support that knows exactly what problems the product has and knows exactly what hardware and software engineering is doing to fix any problems.

Accurate and complete reference manuals for the unit and for the map software. Plus tutorials on unit functions.

Screen comes with Invisible Shield already installsed.

Optionals: External battery packs, different kinds of lanyard attachments, and different power cables.

 

[When pigs fly. :wub: ]

Good questions... let's see what I can add...

 

The PN-40 will not do shading or display 3D... tough start to your questions!

 

We're using the Cartesio chipset from ST Micro, it is performing very well in our internal and beta testing and development still has some time to fine tune everything before release. We're very excited about our new GPS chipset.

 

Our screen is excellent outside. It actually works better when it is in full sunlight.

 

We do not offer traffic updates through the PN-40. We do offer Street and Topographic mapping along with our new Map Library subscription for all the Color Aerial Imagery, USGS Quads, and NOAA Nautical Charts. The Topo USA data has all of the points of interest traditionally associated with our Street Atlas USA software allowing you to search for the gas stations you mentioned and then create a road route to them.

 

Remember that this is included in the $399.95 price for the Earthmate PN-40.

 

Our maps are updated when we release new versions of Topo USA... it is also possible to draw in roads and trails using Topo USA, and then transfer them to your Earthmate PN-40.

 

The PN-40 will beep twice when you are 30 seconds from a turn and then beep a second time when you arrive at the turn. When I goecache I like to create a road route from my current location to the next cache then switch to a direct route to cover the off-road distance to the find.

 

And your wish list...

 

Portable, rugged, and waterproof to a couple foot depth. Yes, yes, and yes... floats if you use our rechargeable battery or the Energizer e2 Lithiums.

Paperless geocaching. 800 character limit but we're looking to improve on this.

3-axis compass. Our 3-axis compass is the best part of our new device. It's changed the way I geocache...

Some means of accurately updating certain map areas as needed. Good request.

Autorouting on road or on trail. Auto routing on road, trail is on our feature list...

Traffic control receiver. Did I mention we have a 3-axis compass? Seriously though, while traffic updates are nice, we're working on an outdoor receiver... traffic control isn't something we're targeting with this device.

Spoken routing for turns and road conditions with adequate volume and volume control. Not with the initial release of the PN-40, will keep an ear open for customer requests.

Maximum backlighting brightness to be a constant whether using 2.4 V batteries or 5 V external source. Our backlight does dim when charging the Lithium Ion rechargeable in your car... once the charge is complete the backlight matches battery and external.

Fully tested (bug free) and working software features to support all of the above. We've been in beta since July and are about to release our 6th beta revision to testers spread across the US. We're very pleased with all of their hard work and will be giving them the nod to talk about their experience very soon... for the time being they are under a NDA.

In house trained technical support that knows exactly what problems the product has and knows exactly what hardware and software engineering is doing to fix any problems. Design, Development, Testing, Support, Sales, and Marketing are all in the same building here in Yarmouth, ME. We rotate Tech Support through the QA department during the project cycle and expose all departments to the device when they are planning outdoor activities for after work and on the weekends. This device use is a key part of sales, support, and customer service. Check out our blog.delorme.com site for details on how some of us use the device.

Accurate and complete reference manuals for the unit and for the map software. Plus tutorials on unit functions. The manual is part of my department... we work hard to make it useful for release and deliver PDF updates when firmware releases add new functionality. Our support site plus forum.delorme.com and blog.delorme.com are the best locations to get white papers, peer-to-peer help, and use case scenarios.

Screen comes with Invisible Shield already installed. Our travel kit comes with three screen protector shields that are pre-shaped to match the device. Pre-installed would be nice...

Optionals: External battery packs, different kinds of lanyard attachments, and different power cables. Check the accessories on our site... no external battery packs yet but there is a power travel kit and some cool RAM mounting hardware.

 

I hope this helps with some of your questions. Let me know if you have any other questions... check out the forum and blog too... the best info goes out into the wild there first although it always seems to work its way over here pretty quickly!

 

Chip Noble

Team DeLorme

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Would you please describe how tracklogs are managed on the PN-40?

The PN-40 can hold 10 track logs with 10,000 points in each log. Logs can be recorded by time or by distance interval. You can view one saved track at a time on the PN-40 or download them to Topo USA to analyze them with the Draw and Profile tools available with that product.

 

I'd amplify that statement slightly to note that the Draw tools easily allow one to add as many tracks as one likes to trail or road layers (for autorouting), or to a separate draw layer (e.g., as a colored line). Any of these can then be downloaded to GPS as a part of the detail map file.

 

So, while it's true that only one of the saved tracks on the PN-x0 can be displayed at a time (this in addition to the active track), with post-collection processing in the Topo7 software you can display an an essentially unlimited number of tracks in a variety of forms. This is one of the features that illustrates why you really have to think of the PN-x0 and the Topo7 software as a set (and why Delorme sells them that way). Mapsource is relatively uneditable. But you can add to the Topo7 database with data from the PN-x0, which in turn provides modified data for use on the PN-x0.

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...

The PN-40 will not do shading or display 3D... tough start to your questions!

 

We're using the Cartesio chipset from ST Micro, it is performing very well in our internal and beta testing and development still has some time to fine tune everything before release. We're very excited about our new GPS chipset.

 

Our screen is excellent outside. It actually works better when it is in full sunlight.

...

Chip Noble

Team DeLorme

Thanks Chip. I am totally impressed by Delorme over Garmin. I don't want to go much beyond where I am now until I know for certain that I want to abandon the Colorado / Oregon. Some reason why I may stick with the Colorado are:

If Garmin can in fact fix the dynamic barometic tracking when the unit is turned off and other outstanding problems such as this accuracy and drift issue.

I have found several caches with the Colorado in spite of whether its accuracy and/or drift problems got in the way or not. The unit has straightened its errors out well enough to find the caches. Would a more stable accurate GPSr really matter?

I like the larger screen and higher resolution.

Using the screens in full sun has not been the problem. The problem is when in shade when the backlighting must be at its highest. The CO backlighting is much brighter if one used an external 5 V supply rather then the 2.4 V internal batteries.

 

I can see myself going either way depending on what Garmin does in the near future. Since the PN-20 has the same screen size as the 40 I should go take a good up close look at it somewhere.

Edited by Ratsneve

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I'd amplify that statement slightly to note that the Draw tools easily allow one to add as many tracks as one likes to trail or road layers (for autorouting), or to a separate draw layer (e.g., as a colored line). Any of these can then be downloaded to GPS as a part of the detail map file.

 

So, while it's true that only one of the saved tracks on the PN-x0 can be displayed at a time (this in addition to the active track), with post-collection processing in the Topo7 software you can display an an essentially unlimited number of tracks in a variety of forms. This is one of the features that illustrates why you really have to think of the PN-x0 and the Topo7 software as a set (and why Delorme sells them that way). Mapsource is relatively uneditable. But you can add to the Topo7 database with data from the PN-x0, which in turn provides modified data for use on the PN-x0.

These features, previously unregistered in my mind, make the PN-X0 an shoo in for lure course setting.

Recorded multiple plans for an given venue, low fat icing on the cake, I tell ya! Thanks for the awakening

embra.

Remember when you were a kid and hated the approach of the end of summer, now I'm wanting fall to

be here, like, . . . yesterday. Somehow "Good things come to all who wait." can't soothe my 'jonesin' '.

Oh Well (parts 1&2)!

 

Norm

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So, while it's true that only one of the saved tracks on the PN-x0 can be displayed at a time (this in addition to the active track), with post-collection processing in the Topo7 software you can display an an essentially unlimited number of tracks in a variety of forms. This is one of the features that illustrates why you really have to think of the PN-x0 and the Topo7 software as a set (and why Delorme sells them that way). Mapsource is relatively uneditable. But you can add to the Topo7 database with data from the PN-x0, which in turn provides modified data for use on the PN-x0.

I haven't done MapSource any justice (as limited as its editable features may be) so I cannot make any comparison but...that said anyway... are you saying that with Street Atlas USA and/or Topo 7(?) I could edit in new streets and/or trails that didn't exist on the map and then export these additions to the PN-40 and in fact be able to auto-route on these new streets and trails? I thought Chip said that the PN-40 autorouted streets only--no trails yet?

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Yes, and yes, correct in the future for trails. Truly, the DeLorme forum warrants a good lurking.

 

Norm

Edited by RRLover

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Would you please describe how tracklogs are managed on the PN-40?

The PN-40 can hold 10 track logs with 10,000 points in each log. Logs can be recorded by time or by distance interval. You can view one saved track at a time on the PN-40 or download them to Topo USA to analyze them with the Draw and Profile tools available with that product.

 

I'd amplify that statement slightly to note that the Draw tools easily allow one to add as many tracks as one likes to trail or road layers (for autorouting), or to a separate draw layer (e.g., as a colored line). Any of these can then be downloaded to GPS as a part of the detail map file.

 

Thanks Chip & Embra,

 

I am part of a search & rescue team, and we are looking to replace our fleet of ancient GPS's, and I would like to carefully consider the PN-40 and Topo USA 7.0 software.

 

I was thinking about using "tracks" to map all the trails since, obviously, mapping software from DeLorme or Garmin doesn't always have the latest and greatest view of trails (e.g. floods wash out / re-route trails, etc...). Also, most times, searches occur in the dead of night where trails are very easily lost. Unless a search team has an intimate memory of a particular area, a search team can get very easily lost.

 

Although I would be very impressed if DeLorme further enhanced the track capabilities of the PN-40 in future software updates (consider taking a look at the Oregon 400t?), maybe "tracks" is not the best solution for my problem? I've seen mention of the XMap software -- would that allow us to create our own set of trails and upload them to the PN-40? Or am I completely off base, and using using tracks is a more workable solution?

 

Regards,

J

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Once you have a track in your PN-xx you can download that to Topo and copy it to a Draw Layer. With the Draw layer, you can change colors, make it wider/smaller, dotted line, dashed line etc and then "Cut" a map with just the Draw Layers on it and then be able to turn on/off this layer on the PN-xx.

 

There are some great examples here.

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We actually had one of our employees do just this thing... with a little different spin. He's an avid mountain biker and used the PN to map all of the mountain bike trails for Bradbury Mountain State Park, one of the parks near our headquarters.

 

It took him a little while to bike all of the trails and gather the data but once he finished riding he was able to bring his GPS track logs into the Draw tab in Topo USA (XMap will also work) and then convert the data into trails that looked like the existing Topo USA map data.

 

Once he had all the trail data in Topo USA he created a Draw Layer for his PN and sent it over to the device. We don't have trail routing on the device yet, but it is possible to see all of the data as though it was part of the original map. I've done the same thing for the hiking trails around my camp. I don't use Tracks for this because they are too difficult to manage as a group. You really want a single file with a trail network that can be managed as a group. Tracks are meant to capture where you've been and allow you to follow the track back to where you started.

 

You can do all of this with your PN-40 and a copy of Topo USA. It is also worth talking with our pro-sales group too, XMap is a much more powerful product than Topo USA, it allows you to scan in any map and use it in the desktop software and on your PN... I'm pulling data from the Maine GIS Catalog as we speak for a white water kayaking trip I'm going on tomorrow... Check with the pro-sales people, they have good pricing for Topo USA upgraders and I'm sure they'd like to talk with you if you are ordering multiple units.

 

http://shop.delorme.com/OA_HTML/DELibeCCtd...p;section=10106

 

If you do end up with a PN-40 and you're looking to map all of your trails let me know... I've started putting together a short white paper on how to do this... thanks for the question!

 

Chip Noble

Team DeLorme

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Thanks for the info!

 

Many months ago, I purchased a copy of "Topo USA 7.0 West" and have been using it with a Garmin GPS. Personally, I like the DeLorme software so much better than Garmin's MapSource, and especially National Geographic Topo.

 

It's definitely in my plans to get a PN-40, once it is released, to see if it will work for our team. If so, I'll contact the pro-sales people if we make a purchasing decision to go with the PN-40s, and will let you know about sending the white paper over to me (if it's ready at that time).

 

One final question if you have enough data to answer:

 

I think the PN-40 has a patch antenna, compared to the quad-helix in the Garmin 60CSx, or the "patch hybrid" (or whatever you want to call it) in the Garmin Oregon 400t.

 

I'm in forested / mountainous terrain, and I have to say that Garmin Oregon 400t regularly had difficulties in putting down a nice and consistent tracklog, when compared with the 60CSx. I don't know if this was due to the "patch hybrid" antenna it uses, or software bugs, or the inability of Garmin designers to take full advantage of the STM Cartesio chipset. In other words, it is my opinion that the 60CSx easily outperforms the Oregon 400t in terms of accuracy, which is what I'm most concerned with.

 

Do you have any field data that indicates that the PN-40 will at least be comparable to the 60CSx in terms of accuracy and its ability to maintain satellite locks? Will the antenna on the PN-40 be the limiting factor? (I'll assume that DeLorme has, or soon will, take full advantage of the STM chipset.)

 

Is it best to carry the PN-40 in a horizontal orientation? We usually strap GPS's to backpacks in a vertical orientation.

 

Finally: I realize we are talking about consumer-grade GPS devices, and not professional units. My expectations for accuracy may be too high, and I realize that, but a device that compares favorably with the 60CSx (with the ability to create custom trails) is all I want.

 

Regards,

J

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Great questions right above this one...

 

I wonder how well other GPSr geocache and street routing users have adjusted going from larger to smaller lower resolution screens like Delorme's PN-x0 series compared to there larger higher resolution screens like Garmin's nuvies, Colorado, and Oregon lines that they gave up for various reasons?

 

Despite having a more feature functional, accurate, stable GPSr and better maps and mapping software does the smaller screen cause regrets that are hard to overcome when you have used a larger screen GPSr or is it a piece-of-cake once you get comfortable using the smaller screen?

 

I just sold an old Magellan eXplorist 200. I wonder now if its screen size and resolution is the same as the PN-x0?

 

What are the technical reasons why Delorme didn't go with a larger screen design? I'm assuming at this point that an increased retail cost was but a very minor player in the design decision?

 

I'm hoping that absorbing good answers to all the above will help me accept and appreciate using a physically smaller screen that has lower resolution like the PN-40 over my current Colorado 400t? Is there going to be a PN-60 in another 14 months with a Colorado sized screen?

 

If I can't put screen size to rest it is going to remain a stumbling block for me. Looking at map pictures is not the whole answer.

Edited by Ratsneve

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The only thing I could tell you is to actually go look at one and hole it in your hand (if you have the option to). I drive around with my 20 all the time and it is easy to read.

 

Another option is to wait until the 40 comes out and if you don't like it, sent it back. DeLorme has a great 30 return policy (you would be out shipping but though).

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I have used the 20. It's freaking great......nearly. CPU is r e a l l y s l o w. Like really slow. Makes screen redraws a pain as well as searching and computing things. Wait for the 40 and you will love.

Edited by ryleyinstl

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What file format will the PN-40 accept for uploading tracks? Is there a way to upload tracks that were used in a Garmin for custom maps such as .img, .mp, or .gpx files or a way to convert these file formats to something that the DeLorme will accept? Thanks in advance.

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... are you saying that with Street Atlas USA and/or Topo 7(?) I could edit in new streets and/or trails that didn't exist on the map and then export these additions to the PN-40 and in fact be able to auto-route on these new streets and trails? I thought Chip said that the PN-40 autorouted streets only--no trails yet?

Chip is referring to what the PN-20/40 is able to do on their own. Last time I check, though, you can create a trail autoroute in Topo7, save it, download it to the PN-20, and then use it. That's not quite as useful as creating them on the fly in the field, but it is doable. You also have to be careful to not have the PN-20 recalculate the route, because it will trash it.

 

Trail autorouting seems so useful for hikers that I can't imagine Delorme *not* getting this working properly sometime in the future. But so far they've had other priorities for firmware upgrades.

 

I think others have affirmed the first part of your question...but just in case, yes for Topo7. I haven't used Street Atlas for a while, so I don't know how much editing you can do there. And in any event, SA maps can't transfer to the PNs. You have to stick with Topo7 or XMap for PN connectivity.

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...

I think the PN-40 has a patch antenna, compared to the quad-helix in the Garmin 60CSx, or the "patch hybrid" (or whatever you want to call it) in the Garmin Oregon 400t.

 

I'm in forested / mountainous terrain, and I have to say that Garmin Oregon 400t regularly had difficulties in putting down a nice and consistent tracklog, when compared with the 60CSx. I don't know if this was due to the "patch hybrid" antenna it uses, or software bugs, or the inability of Garmin designers to take full advantage of the STM Cartesio chipset. In other words, it is my opinion that the 60CSx easily outperforms the Oregon 400t in terms of accuracy, which is what I'm most concerned with.

 

Do you have any field data that indicates that the PN-40 will at least be comparable to the 60CSx in terms of accuracy and its ability to maintain satellite locks? Will the antenna on the PN-40 be the limiting factor? (I'll assume that DeLorme has, or soon will, take full advantage of the STM chipset.)

 

Is it best to carry the PN-40 in a horizontal orientation? We usually strap GPS's to backpacks in a vertical orientation.

...

 

This may partially answer your question:

 

I have both a 60CSx and PN-20. The PN-20 has a patch antenna; I assume the PN-40 has the same. In difficult forested mountainous terrain carrying the PN-20 horizontal face up definitely helps in my experience (mountain valleys of WA Olympics and Cascades).

 

Using and REI electronics pouch attached to the shoulder strap of my pack I found it fairly easy to carry it horizontal face up.

 

In my experience I found the 60CSx to be a little more accurate that the PN-20. This is based on the spread of the tracks going in and coming out on the same trail. To quantify that a little on one hike the PN-20 tracks were a maximum of 70 ft apart. The 60CSx tracks were a max of 47 ft apart.

 

The difference between the two is small enough that when hiking in a valley the one which is on my outside shoulder (away from the hillside) often does better.

 

Both have produced straight track segments where presumably the reception was too poor to record a track point. Again 60CSx did this less, but the difference was fairly small.

 

It would not take a very big improvement for the PN-40 to match or beat the 60CSx.

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I've been following this thread fairly closely, but I haven't seen one question yet. Does the PN-40 read negative elevation? That is, if I reach the very bottom of Death Valley, will it read at or near -282 feet below sea level?

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I've been following this thread fairly closely, but I haven't seen one question yet. Does the PN-40 read negative elevation? That is, if I reach the very bottom of Death Valley, will it read at or near -282 feet below sea level?

One of my favorite old questions too. I was surprised my eXplorist 200 wouldn't read minus elevations. The Colorado will from what I understand but I haven't been able to test it myself. It will read a negative rate of descent when descending in elevation which is fun to watch either way but will it continue to read negative when descending below sea level? And how about that PN-40 too?

Edited by Ratsneve

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Thanks for the info!

 

One final question if you have enough data to answer:

 

I think the PN-40 has a patch antenna, compared to the quad-helix in the Garmin 60CSx, or the "patch hybrid" (or whatever you want to call it) in the Garmin Oregon 400t.

 

I'm in forested / mountainous terrain, and I have to say that Garmin Oregon 400t regularly had difficulties in putting down a nice and consistent tracklog, when compared with the 60CSx. I don't know if this was due to the "patch hybrid" antenna it uses, or software bugs, or the inability of Garmin designers to take full advantage of the STM Cartesio chipset. In other words, it is my opinion that the 60CSx easily outperforms the Oregon 400t in terms of accuracy, which is what I'm most concerned with.

 

Do you have any field data that indicates that the PN-40 will at least be comparable to the 60CSx in terms of accuracy and its ability to maintain satellite locks? Will the antenna on the PN-40 be the limiting factor? (I'll assume that DeLorme has, or soon will, take full advantage of the STM chipset.)

 

Is it best to carry the PN-40 in a horizontal orientation? We usually strap GPS's to backpacks in a vertical orientation.

I would also like to place an emphasis on this question. I'm a Magellan Meridian user for the past 5 years and have great faith in the Quad-helix antenna under heavy forest. The patch antenna gives me pause. Do you have any data points that indicate this antenna performs well in heavy Pacific Northwest forest lands?

 

PN-20 users please feel free to reply. I'd like a personal use impression on this as well.

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I transitioned from a Meridian Gold to the PN-20 in December. My experience was that the PN-20 works fine under heavy tree cover. Also from caching with other cachers with Meridians, the PN-20 will bring you directly to the cache. No circling and wandering about like you do while you wait for the Meridian to catch up.

 

I find the PN-20 is just a more responsive and accurate unit. This is all based on my experience - your mileage may vary.

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I transitioned from a Meridian Gold to the PN-20 in December. My experience was that the PN-20 works fine under heavy tree cover. Also from caching with other cachers with Meridians, the PN-20 will bring you directly to the cache. No circling and wandering about like you do while you wait for the Meridian to catch up.

 

I find the PN-20 is just a more responsive and accurate unit. This is all based on my experience - your mileage may vary.

That helps. Thanks!

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I've been following this thread fairly closely, but I haven't seen one question yet. Does the PN-40 read negative elevation? That is, if I reach the very bottom of Death Valley, will it read at or near -282 feet below sea level?

Let me toss out some speculative conjecture here.

 

Doesn't it always seem that when a manufacturer introduces an new, upscale model of an existing product that none of the features of the previous go away?

For example, my 2006 Jeep Grand Cherokee has added Sirius Satellite radio while the OTA AM\FM capability has been retained.

Similarly, Chip has announced the addition of a barometric altimeter in the PN-40 and I would expect that the PN-20 GPS derived altitude data to be retained.

 

Now, which, if not both, will provide values when the values determined are less than 0', or below Sea Level?

Both would not surprise me, but I certainly expect the GPS derived to display negatives, when calculated.

My expectation is based on observations taken with my PN-20 over a period of several days.

I live essentially at Sea Level and 40 readings gave me an average elevation of 7' and a standard deviation of ±21' with 14 of the 40 values being negative.

So yes, although I haven't performed this data gathering at Badwater, I would expect all values to be negative at the bottom.

Projecting to the PN-40, I would expect that to remain unchanged as I imagine that DeLorme is totally involved with perfecting new features at the expense of tweaking old features that are not broken.

 

Regarding the new barometric altimeter, pure conjectural speculation on my part would be that it would operated similarly. If they do not reset all GPS derived negative values to zero (or, *******?), I expect the same for the barometric.

 

Universally, this is true. The standard atmospheric pressure at Sea Level is 29.92inHg and I've never heard of a barometer that chops off readings lower than that.

Edited by Team CowboyPapa

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