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Time for a New GPS already....


chrisrayn
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Hello. Everybody was very helpful in finding my first gps device, but it's time for an upgrade.

 

Okay, HERE'S a list of what I want, below. If no GPS device exists that has all of this, please let me know:

 

by the way, I do Not want an iPhone.

 

Paperless. The unit I get will have to be able to download waypoints from a computer, like from the pocket queries I can download onto my device.

 

Computer connection cable. Bonus if the device does it wirelessly somehow, but if I must be wired, I prefer USB.

 

Driving directions preferable. (Basemap) I've noticed a lot of times I just can't figure out how to Get to a cache.

 

Displays all cache information through Geocaching Features. I really want to be able to see the title, the description, the hint, the gcXXXX code, the works. I honestly don't know if this is even possible, but it would be incredibly useful. I want to be able to get closer to the cache while still being able to look at the cache information.

 

Handheld. Portable enough to go on a landyard or a belt clip or something. This one I'm a little flexible on. I just don't want it to be as big as a novel.

 

Decent memory.

 

Rocker Keypad or Touchscreen.

 

Channels. Even my little geomate has 12 channels, I think.

 

Color screen.

 

Waterproof.

 

Rechargeable battery, hopefully longlasting. I'm a little flexible on this on too...I just want it to come With a rechargeable, with the option for a car charger, or able to take rechargeable AA or AAA batteries.

 

-----------------

 

Does this even exist? Or does it cost a ton?

 

Thanks!

 

chrisrayn

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Hello. Everybody was very helpful in finding my first gps device, but it's time for an upgrade.

 

Okay, HERE'S a list of what I want, below. If no GPS device exists that has all of this, please let me know:

 

by the way, I do Not want an iPhone.

 

Paperless. The unit I get will have to be able to download waypoints from a computer, like from the pocket queries I can download onto my device.

 

Computer connection cable. Bonus if the device does it wirelessly somehow, but if I must be wired, I prefer USB.

 

Driving directions preferable. (Basemap) I've noticed a lot of times I just can't figure out how to Get to a cache.

 

Displays all cache information through Geocaching Features. I really want to be able to see the title, the description, the hint, the gcXXXX code, the works. I honestly don't know if this is even possible, but it would be incredibly useful. I want to be able to get closer to the cache while still being able to look at the cache information.

 

Handheld. Portable enough to go on a landyard or a belt clip or something. This one I'm a little flexible on. I just don't want it to be as big as a novel.

 

Decent memory.

 

Rocker Keypad or Touchscreen.

 

Channels. Even my little geomate has 12 channels, I think.

 

Color screen.

 

Waterproof.

 

Rechargeable battery, hopefully longlasting. I'm a little flexible on this on too...I just want it to come With a rechargeable, with the option for a car charger, or able to take rechargeable AA or AAA batteries.

 

-----------------

 

Does this even exist? Or does it cost a ton?

 

Thanks!

 

chrisrayn

 

Sounds like a Garmin Oregon 550t to me.

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I use a Magellan Triton 500 it does everything you listed (accept rechargeable battery, but that's a double edged sword IMHO) and like the Oregon you have to pay $99 for detailed maps, but I've seen the Triton go for $200 or below online. The Triton 1500 is even better with touch screen, 2.0 MP camera, voice recorder and accepts SD memory cards, Walmart recently clearanced the 1500 for $199! I've seen it online for $300+. I have only used one Magellan unit, but it works very well, never lose sat reception even under foliage or in most buildings (but not all) the software works good and connectivity is as easy as USB :anibad: I looked at several Garmins as well and they are hard to beat if you get either you will be satisfied B)

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Interestingly, my Garmin nuvi 350 fits all your requirements except it will not accept AA batteries nor is it waterproof. I only use it because I already had it when I began caching. A little awkward to carry but works well for me. Wouldn’t recommend it however for caching only though.

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From your list:

 

PN-40 or Oregon 300

 

PN-40.. dire road routing, but cheaps maps up the wazzoo.

 

Oregon.. need to buy premium routing maps but they are great. Then you can stuff it with freely aveilable topos etc.

 

For about the same money, 60SCSx and a Nuvi. Nuvi not only navigates you to the general cache area, but has the paperless cache information as well. I have no idea about the PN-40 or the Oregon, but I do have Colorado experience and I never felt as confident with the Colorado as I do with the 60.

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For about the same money, 60SCSx and a Nuvi. Nuvi not only navigates you to the general cache area, but has the paperless cache information as well.

I use a PN-40 and a nuvi. About the same price, but I get the cache descriptions in the handheld. Asking an outdoor-oriented handheld to compete with a dedicated in-car GPS for road navigation doesn't seem fair.

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PN-40 or iPhone. I have both, and both fit the bill (except for the waterproof part). But you don't want an iPhone for some odd reason, so the PN-40 is about the only one out there that fits everything you want. And I don't see why everyone talks poop about its road routing capabilities, they seem perfectly adequate for me, it gets me where I need to go. But except for the Garmin Rino, NO handheld has a speaker that can give verbal directions, so whether you have a PN-40 or an Oregon 550T, you have to watch the screen and listen for beeps, and neither f them make a good daily-use navigator. But for figuring out the best way to get to a cache, it works fine. In fact I have Garmin Streetpilot and a Navigon auto navigation units, and I've never liked the way the Garmin routed me, so selling Garmin routing as a strong point doesn't hold water for me.

 

Paperless. The unit I get will have to be able to download waypoints from a computer, like from the pocket queries I can download onto my device.

 

Check

 

Computer connection cable. Bonus if the device does it wirelessly somehow, but if I must be wired, I prefer USB.

 

Check. It's a proprietary plug on one end, but the end that plugs into the computer is USB.

 

 

Driving directions preferable. (Basemap) I've noticed a lot of times I just can't figure out how to Get to a cache.

 

Check

 

 

Displays all cache information through Geocaching Features. I really want to be able to see the title, the description, the hint, the gcXXXX code, the works. I honestly don't know if this is even possible, but it would be incredibly useful. I want to be able to get closer to the cache while still being able to look at the cache information.

 

Check. This is actually what is considered "paperless." I load my PQ onto my PN-40, then when I go to find the cache, I got to the menu and pick View Comments, and I have the difficulty/terrain ratings, cache size, description, logs, and the hint. It's flippin' awesome!

 

 

Handheld. Portable enough to go on a landyard or a belt clip or something. This one I'm a little flexible on. I just don't want it to be as big as a novel.

 

Check

 

 

Decent memory.

 

Check. The regular PN-40 has 1GB of memory, 500MB of it user-available. The PN-40SE has 8GB of memory, 7.5GB user available. And both are able to accept up to a 32GB SDHC card.

 

 

Rocker Keypad or Touchscreen.

 

Check. Very easy to use buttons, I MUCH prefer the PN-40 controlls to the controls on my Garmin Legend HCx.

 

 

Channels. Even my little geomate has 12 channels, I think.

 

Check. The PN-40 has a 32 channel receiver, which seems odd, since you'll never have 32 birds visible at any given time, as far as I know.

 

 

Color screen.

 

Check. Very nice screen, easy to read in direct sunlight.

 

 

Waterproof.

 

Check. IPX7 standard.

 

 

Rechargeable battery, hopefully longlasting. I'm a little flexible on this on too...I just want it to come With a rechargeable, with the option for a car charger, or able to take rechargeable AA or AAA batteries.

 

Check. You can get a rechargable battery pack that can charge while in the unit from a car power outlet, and you can also run it on regular rechargable AA batteries, that's what I do. Unfortunately, the Garmins have a much better battery life than the DeLormes, but it's a tradeoff I'm more than happy with for the other benefits.

 

My fingers hurt now.

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Driving directions preferable. (Basemap)

 

Many times the unit will not know that the only park entry is on the north side of the park. If the cache is on the south end, your gps will take to the south side, where there's a big fence, no entry (or private homes, no entry. or a locked service gate, no entry. ) Sometimes the entry IS on the map, so sometimes the gps unit will get that right. But wrong, often - regardless of brand.

 

I find the road nav on the PN-40 okay, but very slow. On the other hand, there's a map right on the screen. Your brain can probably process it faster and better than any gps unit.

 

A number of gps units take and display the entire .gpx file. The PN-40 will grab your PQs directly from your PQ page, through its cachemate software (+$10), a bonus feature.

 

It's not touchscreen, that would be the Garmin Oregon, a unit that meets your needs, and that I like, and that will also play Wherigo cartridges.

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Garmin Colorado (rocker wheel) or Oregon (touch screen) with City Navigator (for routing).

 

I've got an iPhone and don't feel it's a suitable substitute for a real GPS...but it does give me access to newly published cache info and updated logs if my PQ is a couple of days old.

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Right now, I'm using a Garmin 60CSx with a Dell Axim x50 PDA for paperless caching myself. I'm looking forward to the day that my AT&T account can be upgraded so that I can get the iPhone for myself and ditch carrying the cell phone+PDA+GPSr and just have the GPSr and cell phone. It'll make for a lighter pair of cargo shorts I'm sure.

 

OT: On a side note for those that have the iPhone, is the GPS with the available maps good enough for vehicular routing?

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Interestingly, my Garmin nuvi 350 fits all your requirements except it will not accept AA batteries nor is it waterproof. I only use it because I already had it when I began caching. A little awkward to carry but works well for me. Wouldn’t recommend it however for caching only though.

I too use a Nuvi 350 because I have it. Select off road when you get close and it guides you right to the coordinates. The sensitivity is as good or better than some handhelds.

I also have an old dinosaur Garmin GPS 12 (ancient). I use the Nuvi to drive to the trail head. I use the GPS 12 as a handheld on longer cache trails. I use it because I have it.

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I was thinking the same thing but i want to add a digital camera to my PN-40 for geo-tagging photos so the 550T fits my list. too bad I already have a PN-40 and PN-20 with no upgrades in the near future (unless DeLorme wows me again with a camera!)

If you have a digital camera already, there are plenty of apps to add the geotag info to the photos by using the track on the GPS and matching the time on the camera and the track.

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If you have a digital camera already, there are plenty of apps to add the geotag info to the photos by using the track on the GPS and matching the time on the camera and the track.

 

You would'nt happen to have an example or two of the apps that you could do that with, would you?

Edited by Riverwolf
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...I do not want an iPhone.
A pity, as it's awfully close to what you DO want. And if you get right down to it, there are things on your list that no other GPS that I know of can do...

 

The iPhone has paperless caching and can load caches wirelessly - using PQs direct from GC.com. It displays all of the cache info you want. It's light and small enough to fit easily in a trouser pocket. Comes in 8, 16, and 32 gig models. I think on those details -- which you listed as important -- nothing else comes close.

 

Take it as read that it does everything else on your list EXCEPT: It's not waterproof, has lousy battery life, and the GPS itself is not as precise as most dedicated units. To address these concerns:

 

Waterproof? A properly designed case. Aquapack, otterbox, others. Or just keep it in a ziplock bag, in an inside pocket when you're not looking at it :laughing:

 

Battery life? An external pack. Pocketsolutions.com has a good one.

 

Precision/accuracy? One of the biggest myths of geocaching is that you need a super accurate GPS. Map making? Surveyor? Yep, shop for precision. Basic road navigation? Hiking? Geocaching? Nah. An iPhone will get you "close enough" - if you can't find a cache once you're there, even with an aerial image or topo map, that's your problem :cool: And that does happen to me quite a bit - but I don't blame the GPS when I can't find the cache, regardless of whether it's my iPhone or one of my "real" GPS units.

 

Does this even exist? Or does it cost a ton?
You might not WANT an iPhone, but it's the closest fit to your stated specs. And it doesn't cost a ton to BUY -- three models at the $99, $199, and $299 price points.

 

But there's that monthly bill. I get off cheap, around $56/month -- but the regular rate plan starts around $70/month. Given everything ELSE it does (geocaching and other GPS stuff is only a tiny part of my usage), I do consider it a bargain.

 

So, are you SURE you don't want an iPhone? :D

 

---

Full disclosure: I am an Apple and AT&T stockholder, and I work for a large corporation that gets me a bargain on my iPhone rate plan.

Edited by lee_rimar
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I was thinking the same thing but i want to add a digital camera to my PN-40 for geo-tagging photos so the 550T fits my list. too bad I already have a PN-40 and PN-20 with no upgrades in the near future (unless DeLorme wows me again with a camera!)

If you have a digital camera already, there are plenty of apps to add the geotag info to the photos by using the track on the GPS and matching the time on the camera and the track.

 

I use a pay program called topofusion that also contains a subsegment called photofusion that will either simply place your jpgs on a map based on the track data from your GPS, or alternately write the location data to the exif data on your pictures. Unfortunately, it doesn't work on RAW photos. Delormes TOPO will do the same thing in regards to putting your photo where it belongs on the map, but it won't write the data to the jpg as far as I know.

 

To find free programs that will do the same thing, do a quick google on geotagging. Even microsoft has options to do this for you.

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I got a garmin dakota 10 a few weeks ago for my birthday and i love it my husband had a oregon and it is very similar to his. although my dakota holds more caches than his oregon and the oregon had a bit og a bigger screen for the price differance i would go with the dakota. there is a dakato 10 which only has 850 mb of internal memory and is not expandable it goes for around 300 bucks. Then there is the dakota 20 which has an expandable memory takes micro sd cards. there really isn't much differance and it goes for about 350 bucks. I paid around 500 bucks for my husbands oregon. oh and the battery life is better on the dakota series because the screen res. it a bit lower but not very noticable.

I hoe i didn't confuse you, hehe all i wanted to do it try to help

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You might want to consider two GPS units - a dedicated car unit (they're cheap these days) along with a handheld for caching. I have a Garmin 60cx and was never comfortable using it for navigation, I'd have to spend too much time looking at the GPS instead of the road. I picked up a TomTom for the car and I'm much happier with voice directions.

 

I'm seriously considering picking up a Dakota 20 from Garmin for my next handheld for the touch screen and improved paperless functions. https://buy.garmin.com/shop/shop.do?cID=145&pID=30926

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Hi - I get all of what you're looking for with my Oregon 400T. Its biggest issue is with the screen but I've got used to it - it's best if you actually get the light reflecting off it. The 550 is supposed to be better but I haven't seen it. BTW, battery life doesn't seem to suffer with having the backlight on all the time, and the brightness up full - it certainly serves me all day - and with spare AA batteries in my bag I don't see any issues.

 

I get the driving directions by adding a (Garmin) SD card. That's the easiest option to go for but functionally it's best to get the maps on DVD, to download to your own card (this leaves the rest of the card free to take other data etc.). Because the Oregon allows for different profiles it's easy to switch from geocaching mode to automotive mode. BUT, as someone else has replied, I agree that a dedicated vehicle SatNav is preferable.

 

hope this helps

 

JsR

 

Hello. Everybody was very helpful in finding my first gps device, but it's time for an upgrade.

 

Okay, HERE'S a list of what I want, below. If no GPS device exists that has all of this, please let me know:

 

by the way, I do Not want an iPhone.

 

Paperless. The unit I get will have to be able to download waypoints from a computer, like from the pocket queries I can download onto my device.

 

Computer connection cable. Bonus if the device does it wirelessly somehow, but if I must be wired, I prefer USB.

 

Driving directions preferable. (Basemap) I've noticed a lot of times I just can't figure out how to Get to a cache.

 

Displays all cache information through Geocaching Features. I really want to be able to see the title, the description, the hint, the gcXXXX code, the works. I honestly don't know if this is even possible, but it would be incredibly useful. I want to be able to get closer to the cache while still being able to look at the cache information.

 

Handheld. Portable enough to go on a landyard or a belt clip or something. This one I'm a little flexible on. I just don't want it to be as big as a novel.

 

Decent memory.

 

Rocker Keypad or Touchscreen.

 

Channels. Even my little geomate has 12 channels, I think.

 

Color screen.

 

Waterproof.

 

Rechargeable battery, hopefully longlasting. I'm a little flexible on this on too...I just want it to come With a rechargeable, with the option for a car charger, or able to take rechargeable AA or AAA batteries.

 

-----------------

 

Does this even exist? Or does it cost a ton?

 

Thanks!

 

chrisrayn

Link to comment

If you have a digital camera already, there are plenty of apps to add the geotag info to the photos by using the track on the GPS and matching the time on the camera and the track.

 

You would'nt happen to have an example or two of the apps that you could do that with, would you?

 

One would be the software that comes with the PN series...T8? Another was thrown out in another thread, so I know of two already. You can search for the second if you wish, it's in the thread I started about geotagging.

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Rechargeable battery, hopefully longlasting. I'm a little flexible on this on too...I just want it to come With a rechargeable, with the option for a car charger, or able to take rechargeable AA or AAA batteries.

 

-----------------

 

Does this even exist? Or does it cost a ton?

 

Thanks!

 

chrisrayn

Not in the box, but purchased separately, I use the Li-Ion rechargeable battery pack for my PN-40.

I keep it charged while in my PN-40, I don't remove it to charge, from my vehicle's 12VDC.

 

A Power Travel kit with all these items may be purchased from DeLorme.

 

I have also used this battery pack:

 

Delkin Rechargeable Li-Ion Battery Pack:

http://www.thomasdistributing.com/shop/del...nrsllit8gi3gna7

 

12VDC (Car) PN-40 Charger:

http://www.walmart.com/catalog/product.do?...uct_id=10993613

 

The PN-40 can also be run with NiMH AAs.

However, they have to be removed for recharging.

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Garmin GPSmap 60CSx and a speaker/charger accessory for voice directions - http://www.gpscity.com/garmin-gpsmap-276c-...aker-cable.html

 

Can't go wrong!

 

You think that cable/speaker going to provide "talky talk" from a 60CSx? Alrighty then...good luck! :laughing:

 

Here's a hint. The GPS UNIT ITSELF has to be voice capable. The speaker is just the output device and the data gets sent from the UNIT to the SPEAKER. :)

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If you have a digital camera already, there are plenty of apps to add the geotag info to the photos by using the track on the GPS and matching the time on the camera and the track.

 

You would'nt happen to have an example or two of the apps that you could do that with, would you?

 

One would be the software that comes with the PN series...T8? Another was thrown out in another thread, so I know of two already. You can search for the second if you wish, it's in the thread I started about geotagging.

The geotagging that is done in Topo8 shows your photos where they were taken on the map, but it does not tag the photos with location.

Your best results will be to export your track as a GPX file, and use a program such as GPicSync. It will create a nice KMZ file which embeds your photos in the track. This can be opened and viewed by anyone using Google Earth.

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