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Help! Ned advise in buying a gps for caching


ytina2001
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Garmin GPSMap 60CSx...for the price you can not beat the 60CSX....No Way. But don't take my word for it, I"m sure others will say the same or you will be paying more....My best advice is don't think "cheap"...you always get what you pay for and sometimes you end up with 2 to 3 "junky" GPS receivers .....Check out GPS receivers on-line, eBay, Garmin, etc. Happy Caching and good luck.

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Well I did a ton of research and I am not rich so I just ordered the Garmin 60csx. The Garmin Colorado seems pretty cool and I almost got it. I looked into the new Magellan Tritons but horror stories were plentiful. It's just hard to go wrong with the 60csx, and the price point is reasonable.

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Garmin GPSMap 60CSx...for the price you can not beat the 60CSX....No Way. But don't take my word for it, I"m sure others will say the same or you will be paying more....My best advice is don't think "cheap"...you always get what you pay for and sometimes you end up with 2 to 3 "junky" GPS receivers .....Check out GPS receivers on-line, eBay, Garmin, etc. Happy Caching and good luck.

I ahve heard that unit as well is a great bargain for the price you pay. It's really accurate and has a great bright color screen. Abosolutely can't go wrong with this unit.

 

I personally use the Garmin eTrex Legend. It's a good unit and the price is very reasonable. It's accurate and the interface is really easy to use too. If you're looking for a good quality unit a good affordable below $200 price, youc an't go wrong with this.

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Please, give me advise on what features and brands of Gps are you happy with. I need to buy my first one for geocaching and I need your expertise. Thanks

 

My first and only GPS is a Garmin 76CSx, a gift. It works great and is pretty easy to understand. It works great with the geocaching.com web site for downloading caches, etc., and you can use the Garmin web site too to mass download geocaches in your area of interest. The map details are pretty good for GPS, but must be downloaded before use. The bigger the memory card the better too so you can down load all the areas of interest, which is especially important if you will be geocaching along a trip and need maps for many miles of area. Of course, you could do without the map details, and the GPS will still point the way.

 

The Garmin 76CSx and the Garmin 60CSx seem to have the same features and go for the same price. Other than shape of the case and the antenna, I'm not sure what the difference is between the two.

 

On some days, I do find that the 76 CSx reports accuracy of something like 90 feet, which is crummy for zeroing in hard to find caches...it seems to be related to the position of the sats it has connected...I'm not sure if other units experience the same thing or not...just something to be aware of. In the same areas on other days or at different times, the accuracy gets down to under 10 feet (again, unit reported figures).

 

In summary, the 76 CSx has some great features and allowed me to jump right in to Geocaching. That said, my niece has a unit she bought for under $100, and it gets her to the same places mine gets me, only she does not get maps in the background, just arrows pointing the direction and digits giving the distance and heading.

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On some days, I do find that the 76 CSx reports accuracy of something like 90 feet, which is crummy for zeroing in hard to find caches...it seems to be related to the position of the sats it has connected...I'm not sure if other units experience the same thing or not...just something to be aware of. In the same areas on other days or at different times, the accuracy gets down to under 10 feet (again, unit reported figures).

 

In summary, the 76 CSx has some great features and allowed me to jump right in to Geocaching. That said, my niece has a unit she bought for under $100, and it gets her to the same places mine gets me, only she does not get maps in the background, just arrows pointing the direction and digits giving the distance and heading.

 

On the distance, I know exactly what you mean. I went on a caching spree today and out of 5 caches the closest I got on gps was 2 feet. the other 4 had anywhere from 19-32ft when I found the cache. I think I need to return my etrex H and buy a better model if there are other garmin models that are more accurate.

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On the distance, I know exactly what you mean. I went on a caching spree today and out of 5 caches the closest I got on gps was 2 feet. the other 4 had anywhere from 19-32ft when I found the cache. I think I need to return my etrex H and buy a better model if there are other garmin models that are more accurate.

That is about average for any gps (other than the commercial ones that costs thousands). My 60 CSx generally gets me in the range of 10-15 feet of the cache --assuming the cache owner also used a fairly new and fairly accurate gps.

 

The etrex H is as probably sensitive and "accurate" as any of the "H" or the 60/76 "X" models. The etrex likely only costs less than the 60 (or 76) Cx or CSx models because it doesn't have all the bells and whistles. The body style on the eTrex is probably a bit less expensive to make as well (and it does have the problem of the rubber gasket coming off).

 

The only other possible reason the 60 and 76 models could give slightly better readings than the eTrex H model would be the antenna, which is different.

 

Of course, I would choose the 60 over the eTrex model for a lot of reasons:

maps - the 60 comes with a base map and you can add topo and city maps (I'm a visual learner)

more routes (50 vs 20)

accepts data cards (the 60 can hold thousands of POI or lots of maps)

auto-routing (so I can get to the cache even in a strange city without paper maps or going online)

1000 waypoints vs 500

20 saved tracks vs 10

electronic compass

barometric altimeter

geocaching-mode (push a button for "next closest" cache after you mark one found)

tide tables (we used this at an EarthCache this summer)

 

But accuracy wouldn't be my main reason. We started with a basic Legend, which is just one step up from the little yellow Garmin eTrex. Neither the basic eTrx or the Legend had the high sensitivity chip. You model is like the little yellow guy, except it does have the better chip. We found our first several hundred caches with the Legends using the base maps. We never purchased additional maps for them. We upgraded for auto-routing and then figured out how cool all the other bells and whistles were.

 

We cached once with a fellow using on the the little Geko units (no maps, no sensitive reciever, just an arrow to follow), and he found most of the caches that day before we did. He used the gps to get near the area and then used good hunting skill to sniff out the cache.

 

Nope, accuracy wouldn't be my main reason for switching units (although if you do upgrade, I would certainly choose one of the models that are more accurate)...If you can get within 40 feet of a cache, you ought to be able to find it. Anything more is just a time saver.

 

Geocaching is mostly in the head. The tools just make it easier.

 

To the OP: Did you pick up on the thought that I would recommend the Garmin 60 CSx or the Garmin 76 CSx (or the Cx models if you want to save a little more $$$). I personally think the 60 CSx is the best unit out there right now.

Edited by Neos2
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;) Everybody's going to sound off here why they think their own GPS unit is the greatest thing to ever happen to geocaching :rolleyes:

 

So why should I be any different? :D:D It was a topic right here, much like this one, that I was advised to check out the unit I ended up buying. I had been considering an old "blue" Legend at the time :D

 

I'm currently using my first-ever GPSr - a Garmin eTrex Venture HC. I love it!! Brand new for $127/free shipping, so it's a fraction of the cost of many of the high-end units you'll get recommendations for in this topic.

 

It has everything I personally need for geocaching:

 

USB interface for easily transferring routes, waypoints, maps and tracks in a blink

 

Fast satellite acquisition

 

Color display that's extremely easy to read (map shows my latest cache hide) :) :

 

map-1.jpg

 

 

High-sensitivity receiver for cloudy days, heavy tree cover and canyon hiking

 

Handy "Compass mode" for pointing to the cache, and displaying how far. Has rotating true compass display that also shows you which direction you're headed:

 

comp-1.jpg

 

 

Enough built-in map memory to hold not only local maps, but future car trips to other states

 

Has "highway" mode showing real-time 3-D display of road you're on and where you're headed

 

Waypoint averaging for accurate cache placements (pic was taken when unit was run inside the house - accuracy is normally about 6 feet when used outside):

 

way_avg.jpg

 

 

"Geocaching friendly":

 

way.jpg

 

 

Automatic calendar that logs and saves your "finds"

 

Highly customizable odometer for walking/biking

 

Audible proximity alarm for when you're close to the cache

 

Auto-tracking that records path traveled at customizable intervals - and has "TracBack" for finding your way back the way you came

 

About the same size as a pack of cigarettes, and very light:

 

 

vhc.jpg

 

 

Easy to clip onto backpack (ditch the neck strap it came with and get a neoprene case with a carabiner - about $10 on E-bay. You can use the unit with it inside the case. Helps protect the display ;) ):

 

 

case-1.jpg

 

 

Takes 2 "AA" batteries. Easy to carry spares on outings.

 

 

 

:( I should get paid by Garmin for my recommendations that sound a lot like sales pitches :D

 

(No, I do NOT work for Garmin :D I'm just nuts about my GPSr B) )

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with all the information you just posted and pics, minus the waypoints obviously is that the way the unit comes straight out of the box? or do you have the 100+ dollar programs on there?

All that is pretty standard on any basic mapping gps.

 

The more expensive models are a bit larger than those with the basic "Legend" body (like the one shown). The one fault with that body style is the black rubber gaskets tend to peel off. We never had that problem with either of ours (or the five I use with my students at school), but many people have. Garmin knows about the problem.

 

If I had to buy a new gps on a budget, I'd look at the Garmin H models. I can't imagine not having the expandable memory, though, so I'd have to have at least the Legend HCx. It makes a huge difference in how many maps you can load or how many POIs you can have.

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with all the information you just posted and pics, minus the waypoints obviously is that the way the unit comes straight out of the box? or do you have the 100+ dollar programs on there?

Like Neos2 said - box stock as shown :rolleyes:

 

As far as map storage, if you're going to be wanting to store a whole slew of maps for every part of the country, like for a cross-country car trip, or another country, and plan to travel a lot with your GPS unit, then, yes, the memory card feature would be a requirement. And I would have bought it if I saw that in my future. But any really far trips we'll be flying, so I don't need ALL maps from here to there. I can load maps for the destination with room to spare.

 

A card reader adds a lot to the price, and for someone like me who uses it primarily for geocaching close to home, it's more than enough. In fact, we'll be taking a car trip to another state and I plan to hit a few caches out there. I have enough room to store the maps for the entire route there as well.

 

Grab from Mapsource. You can see the trip from Albuquerque to Tombstone, all the caches along the way, and the total memory required for all 27 maps needed:

 

maps_route.jpg

 

Lots of room! :(

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Wow that is the first time I have seen Cache Along a Route! That is amazing!!!! I cant wait to go on a trip somewhere and turn a 2 hour drive into a 4 hour cache and drive!!! Seriously looking forward to it!

 

Anyways, you already ordered your GPSr so my advice may go unheeded. But myself being a poor somewhat disadvantaged college student I was unable to afford the Garmin 60csx. I instead focused on buying a refurbed Garmin Etrex Vista Cx, and so far am impressed. It may not be entirely as accurate as the Garmin 60csx, but it gets me close enough, and was extremely affordable. Perhaps eventually I can upgrade, until then this is a great first unit!

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On some days, I do find that the 76 CSx reports accuracy of something like 90 feet, which is crummy for zeroing in hard to find caches...it seems to be related to the position of the sats it has connected...I'm not sure if other units experience the same thing or not...just something to be aware of. In the same areas on other days or at different times, the accuracy gets down to under 10 feet (again, unit reported figures).

 

In summary, the 76 CSx has some great features and allowed me to jump right in to Geocaching. That said, my niece has a unit she bought for under $100, and it gets her to the same places mine gets me, only she does not get maps in the background, just arrows pointing the direction and digits giving the distance and heading.

 

On the distance, I know exactly what you mean. I went on a caching spree today and out of 5 caches the closest I got on gps was 2 feet. the other 4 had anywhere from 19-32ft when I found the cache. I think I need to return my etrex H and buy a better model if there are other garmin models that are more accurate.

 

To get better accuracy you'd have to spend $6,000 or more on a commercial grade GPS. Buying another unit won't give you better accuracy, but it will give you many more features. Besides, how do you know that your unit wasn't perfectly accurate and it was the unit of the hider that was off?

Edited by briansnat
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To get better accuracy you'd have to spend $6,000 or more on a commercial grade GPS. Buying another unit won't give you better accuracy, but it will give you many more features. Besides, how do you know that your unit wasn't perfectly accurate and it was the unit of the hider that was off?

 

Thanks for the info, I am learning something new everyday! Being a newbie, I figured it was my gps since it was under a $100 brand new. I see alot of members here that have 100's to 1,000's of finds with the 3-$500 units.

 

So basically its just one of those deals where in order for my gps to take me right to it with no problem, the hider has to be in the perfect position on the clearest day, and when I come along I have to have the same conditions?

 

Thanks.

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