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AccuTerra with the Explorist


geodarts
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I have both the Explorist 600 and Garmin units. There are a lot of things about the Explorist that I like, but I have not been using it that much. However, the other day I found a way to get WAAS back (and a few new nav screens) and decided that I would also try the AccuTerra maps -- with the AAA discount the price seemed reasonable enough.

 

The primary reason I wanted to try it was the promise that it contained "a unique collection of road and trail data." Trails have always been a weak point with the Magellan maps and I am planning a few hikes into areas that I have not been. But so far, it looks like the Garmin topo maps are much more complete. There are a lot of trails and fireroads that show up in my area on the Garmin, but are not in AccuTerra. And AccuTerra shows nothing in the areas where I plan to hike.

 

I also found out that the AccuTerra maps are downloaded from Magellan as a single .imi file -- in my case, a large file containing all of California and Nevada. Its size requires a comparatively long time to load. In actual practice, it probably will not affect me that much, but I would have preferred a way to upload smaller segments to my Explorist, as I did with Mapsend. I don't need to load a huge map when I am hiking in one particular area or fill up my sd card with maps I do not need -- Magellan should allow you to load smaller regions through Vantage Point or other of its manager.

 

I have not had a chance to go hiking with the AccuTerra maps, so I cannot comment on their accuracy. There are areas near where I live where the Garmin maps are a little off, so the next time I am up that way, I might see how AccuTerra does.

 

I would not use Accuterra for roads and it does not seem to offer that much more than the old Topo3d and the original magellan topo maps. I suppose it would provide an option for the Explorist if you cannot get older copies of Direct Route or the Mapsend topos, but I am disappointed.

Edited by Erickson
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Good post Erickson~

I have also been wondering about the new, expensive (if you would like the whole USA) AccuTerra maps offered by Magellan but was not willing to spend the money to be disappointed again. I have the OLD Mapsend ToPo V 4.20 for the whole USA for less than $100 that I used on my original GPS a Meri/Plat and found that it had most/all of the logging/mining/4x4 roads and trails where I ride my ATV and depend on it's accuracy to navigate in the vast desert areas of Ca., Az., Nv. and UT. I later upgraded to the wonderful Magellan XL, GPS and the new Mapsend ToPo 3D and found that the same roads that were on the old V4.20 ToPo software was missing on the new 3D, ToPo and a waste of my money.

So I had a computer engineer friend of mine HACK the old V4.20 ToPo software so that it would load onto the eXplorist XL, Magellan (call them STUPID) did not make the newer eXplorist GPS line compatible with the older Mapsend Top 4.42,.....So now I can use The *older V4.20* but superior mapping on a larger form factor GPS like the eXplorist XL and have it work and give me the detail that I am looking for , even though the mapping is 5 years old +,...... is still much better than what is on the market now and for the purpose that I use it for.

 

Magellan has lost its good name, state of the art product position and the ability to survive in this very competitive market. This was caused by there disregard for customer support and there lack of software/ firmware up grades. To waste any more money on there less than stellar software ( AccuTerra maps) is a waste. IMHO !!!

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So I had a computer engineer friend of mine HACK the old V4.20 ToPo software so that it would load onto the eXplorist XL, Magellan (call them STUPID) did not make the newer eXplorist GPS line compatible with the older Mapsend Top 4.42,.....

Actually, there are published methods of converting new imi files to old img files for the Magellan, and for making your own maps using any georeferenced maps, photos, charts... within some of the very good usergroups on Yahoo. I hope your friend didn't reinvent the wheel, and that he used those resources. If not then I think it would be great for him to document his methods on those groups.

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Trainlove~

He used and was able to understand methods that he got from the Yahoo user groups,....unfortunately for me he has moved on and I no longer have his expertise to fall on to convert additional other imi files for several other states West of the Mississippi for me. I only have Ca.Nv. Az. Or. & Ut. and would like to have others like Mt. Wa. Nm. Co. Wo. and a few others West of the river. I am an old retired Civil Engineer and this new fangled programing learning curve breaks my teeth to think about it.

 

When they come out with a wide screen PN -40 type model, like the XL, then I will convert to the newer GPS and mapping available,....in the mean time these old eyes can still see my trusty XL.

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