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Gr8Scot

SA Oregon owners

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I'm keen to know if there is any interest in (or objections to) a thread on this forum discussing the Garmin Oregon as a geocaching device. Maybe just somewhere for local cachers to share hints and tips on using this unit. The thought came to me when Cape Doc mentioned to me he had noticed while on "The Other Way" hike that some Oregon owners didn't seem to have the latest firmware update loaded. I thought that perhaps this may be because they weren't aware of it.

 

For those Oregon owners who haven't upgraded their firmware recently, I strongly suggest that you give it some consideration. There have been many firmware upgrades over the year that I have owned mine, the latest possibly being the best. Oregon 300 units being sold in SA have fairly old firmware loaded. A recently purchased 300 had vsn 2.9 while the current version is 3.5. The difference between the two is vast.

 

An option has just been added in 3.5 that adds a "dashboard" to the top 1/3rd of your map screen if desired, displaying the compass, distance to cache and button to access all the cache details (description, logs, hint, etc) directly from the map screen. This shows the details of an active cache if you have set one as your destination. Even better IMHO, however, is that if an active cache is NOT set, the cache details t the top of the screen continually update to show the nearest unfound cache loaded into the device. Great for on the fly caching while driving around.

 

While not claiming to be any sort of an expert, I've closely followed developments of the Oregon over the past year, and would be more than happy to help with questions if any other owner has any. Please note that I'm not connected in any way with Garmin, just a bit of an Oregon nut!

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I own an Oregon 300, and what I like about a recent firmware upgrade (not the latest that you mentioned) is its ability to do waypoint averaging. This is especially handy when planting caches.

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Danie

 

That was added in vsn 3.10 released in September 09. There have been 5 upgrades and many beta releases since then, the most notable in firmware vsn 3.3 when the GPS engine was upgraded to vsn 3.7. This REALLY improved the accuracy of the GPS. So if you are still on firmware version 3.10, you would really benefit from the upgrade to 3.5.

 

There is a whole article on the waypoint averaging feature here: http://garmin.blogs.com/softwareupdates/trail-tech

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So I got my first cache today with my new (second hand) Oregon 300. (Got it off Gumtree, quite a good price). Got me 2m from the cache, but couldn't really use geocaching features as it was a puzzle cache (Number Crunch...quite a stinker!)

Happy to say screen brightness doesn't seem to be an issue.

 

Any tips or tricks?

Which rechargeable batteries do you recommend?

Where do you recommend getting accessories?

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So I got my first cache today with my new (second hand) Oregon 300. (Got it off Gumtree, quite a good price). Got me 2m from the cache, but couldn't really use geocaching features as it was a puzzle cache (Number Crunch...quite a stinker!)

Happy to say screen brightness doesn't seem to be an issue.

 

Any tips or tricks?

Which rechargeable batteries do you recommend?

Where do you recommend getting accessories?

 

I've had my 300 for just over a year now and it still surprizes me, running v3.5 at the mo.

Im using the Duracell Recharge 1800 mAh, Bought the 4 batts with charger in one, always better to have the extra batteries with you in the mountains. One set will last you more than a day if you not chasing nums an pulling all the info off your 300, changing profiles.

What type of accessories are you after?

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A useful tip that I picked up the other day that I wasn't previously aware of, is the ability to save a screen shot from the Oregon. Turn it on with Setup>Display>Screen Capture>On Then you just tap the power button whenever you want to save a screen shot and it gets stored in the Garrmin/Scrn directory in the Oregon's internal memory.

 

On the other hand, the fact that the Oregon doesn't display images embedded in a cache description, can catch you out. I attempted "Blouberg Hideout" the other day without doing any prior research, and got stumped when all the description for EF showed was >. Fortunately I had a smartphone with me and was able to get the info from the web.

Edited by gr8scot

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I am looking for a simple car mounting for my Oregon 300. The only one I can find in Pretoria costs more than R500 and has a built-in charger, which I do not need. Any advice?

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I am looking for a simple car mounting for my Oregon 300. The only one I can find in Pretoria costs more than R500 and has a built-in charger, which I do not need. Any advice?

 

PM sent

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WW I may be interested in that car mount info as well. My Garmin one (less than six months old) has already broken. If the superglue doesn't hold, I may be looking for another.

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I was looking for a mount for my hand held GPS, and went past Union Mart (in PE). They had lots of Garmin mounts. Maybe try one in your area

Edited by DamhuisClan

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I must say I am very happy with the new firmware and now starting to leverage the power of profiles so I actually switch to Geocaching profile when geocaching and Automotive when navigating via the road to a geocache.

 

I find CUM somewhat pricey. Fortunately I bought my auto kit from buy.com for $31.99 when I was in San Francisco in October.

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The latest firmware update for the Oregon x00 and x50 was released yesterday. The details are as follows:

 

Changes made from version 3.00 to 3.10 (x50) & 3.50 to 3.60 (x00):

 

* Increased the map drawing range to allow maps to draw farther south.

* Corrected issue with route line sometimes not drawing.

* Corrected issues with marine POI.

* Corrected issues with GB Discoverer maps.

* Corrected issues with possible corrupted profile showing on the Profile Change page.

* Corrected issue with project waypoint bearing sometimes not showing the input value.

 

A reminder that the unit must be in mass storage mode when using webupdater. Otherwise you get the "download file is corrupted" error message. I keep forgetting this.

Edited by gr8scot

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Just a word of warning to anyone thinking of purchasing an Oregon.

 

Garmin have ceased manufacture of the 200/300/400 series. The last firmware release for the Oregon was only been made available for the 450/550 series, as has the even more recent beta. It would appear that they will no longer be developing the firmware for the x00 series, although they will continue to support it. So future firmware releases for the x00 series will probably be restricted to bug fixes.

 

Several people worldwide have queried this with Garmin Support. Although it has not been confirmed directly, reading between the lines of their replies it seems to be the case. The suspicion is that Garmin is delaying making the announcement to enable retailers to sell off their x00 series stock.

 

I don't even know if the x50 series is available in SA, but if you are in the market for an Oregon, may be advised to consider buying one of these models if you want to keep up with any future enhancements.

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Ag, on the other hand, what more do I want on the Oregon 300? I only need a brighter screen, and that I can't get via firmware.

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I'm happy to report that I was wrong (for now) about firmware upgrades for the x00 series. Upgrades for both x00 and x50 series are now available for download. Interestingly the track archive feature introduced in the last beta release has been dropped from the x50 production release. There were many reports of serious bugs. Details are:

 

Version 3.70 (x00 series) available now via webupdater. GPS version has jumped to 4.34.

 

Release notes:

- Added support for Garmin BirdsEye.

- Added mmHg pressure units.

- Added ability to change active track color.

- Added option to calibrate screen under Setup->Display

 

Oregon x50 (WebUpdater) software version 3.30

 

Changes made from version 3.20 to 3.30:

• Added support for Garmin BirdsEye.

• Added mmHg pressure units.

• Added support for Riyadh time zone.

• Added ability to change active track color.

• Added option to calibrate screen under Setup->Display.

• Added custom waypoint symbol and geocache symbol support

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WARNING

 

There is a bug in both versions of the new firmware that prevents the Oregon from showing street names after the update has been applied. Probably best to avoid this upgrade as a GPSr without street names isn't of much use! I suspect that a fix will be released shortly.

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I came across something interesting yesterday and would like to know if other Oregon owners have experienced the same thing. I was trying to find Mr Panda's "van Riebeek's Hedge" cache http://www.geocaching.com/seek/cache_detai...=y&decrypt=

 

When I tried to access the cache description from a PQ downloaded on Friday, all I got was a blank screen. The hint and logs were visible though. I suspect that it's a similar problem to the Oregon not showing photos in cache descriptions. Mr Panda has done a great job in creating an excellent looking description on the web, but unfortunately for Oregon owners, when out in the field you see nothing.

 

It may be something bearing in mind when creating future cache descriptions. In these days of paperless caching, perhaps putting vital information required for finding the cache in a normal text paragraph at the end would be a suggestion?

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The anticipated firmware upgrades to resolve the missing street names are available for Webupdater. Reports are that the problem is now resolved.

 

Changes made from version 3.70 to 3.80 (x00 models):

 

* Added BirdsEye control to profiles.

* Added screen calibration option to Oregon 200.

* Fixed issue changing marine modes.

* Fixed map display problems.

 

Changes made from version 3.30 to 3.40 (x50 models):

 

* Added BirdsEye control to Profiles.

* Fixed map display problems.

 

Download using Webupdater.

 

http://www8.garmin.com/support/download_details.jsp?id=4051

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Does the latest version include track archiving?

 

It's not mentioned on the Wiki, so I don't think so. The beta was very buggy, so I think they've withdrawn that feature for the production release.

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The other day I was walking a trail and the Oregon was navigating me down the trail and calculating distance etc along the trail. I seem to have changed a setting as it won't do it anymore. Ideas how to get it to navigate on a trail?

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The other day I was walking a trail and the Oregon was navigating me down the trail and calculating distance etc along the trail. I seem to have changed a setting as it won't do it any more. Ideas how to get it to navigate on a trail?

 

First thing to check that you haven't changed profiles. Could be that you were in Recreational and have now switched back to Automotive.

 

In Recreational profile possibly check Settings>Routing>Calculate Route for: is set to Pedestrian and not Car/Motorcycle. Also could be that you need to change the guidance method to use the shortest rather than fastest route.

 

Is the same map enabled as when the trail navigation worked?

 

Could also be that you had chosen a saved track as your destination. The Orgeon wiki states that the following happens if you do this:

 

"Navigating to a track you will give you a distance from your currently location along the track to the end. The pointer will point along the track as you follow it. Details here:"

http://garminoregon.wikispaces.com/Tracks#toc20

 

So there are lots of possibilities. Can you describe the situation more precisely and say which map you were using (Garmap or T4A maybe). It may then be possible to simulate.

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Looks like Garmin have added a very useful new feature in their latest beta releases.

 

The Oregon x00 & x50's (also all Dakotas and the new GPSMAP 62/78's) now have a multi cache function that allows you to enter the co-ordinate of the next stage of a multi once you have completed a stage, and yet still have access to the paperless caching information. More details and links to the beta downloads here:

 

http://www.gpsfix.net/garmin-multicache-beta/

 

Recent beta releases have been causing problems on the Oregon, so you might like to wait and see what the feedback is before installing this, or wait for the official release. But it looks like a very useful function that's long overdue.

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Updates for both the x00 and x50 series have been officially released via the Garmin Webupdater program, rolling up the last few beta releases. Unfortunately there are already reports of bugs in both releases (sigh), but at least the one in the x00 release seems more of an annoyance than a bug.

 

The support for multicaching is fairly rudimentary, but an improvement at least. It allows you to enter co-ordinates of a "Next Point" and still have access to the cache description, logs, hint, etc. The cache filtering function is useful. You can filter based on Type, Size, Difficulty, Terrain, Status (DNF, Unattemped or Found)

 

Here are the changelogs:

 

Software 3.90 (x00 series)

 

* Added ability to set user declination direction

* Added Automatic Shaded Relief option

* Added brightness adjustments for BirdsEye imagery

* Added Geocache filtering. Select Setup > Geocaches to add custom filters

* Added multicaching support

* Improved WAAS performance

* Fixed elevation profiles to always use the most detailed DEM data loaded

* Fixed issue with calculator % function

* Fixed issue with map POI's showing twice for a single point

* Fixed issue with Oblique Mercator User grid

* Fixed occasional shutdowns

* Fixed spot sounding display on certain maps

 

Software 3.80 (x50 series)

 

* Added ability to move waypoints using the map

* Added ability to set user declination direction

* Added Automatic Shaded Relief option

* Added brightness adjustments for BirdsEye imagery

* Added display color to track gpx files

* Added Geocache filtering. Select Setup > Geocaches to add custom filters

* Added import indicator for gpx files

* Added multicaching support

* Added periodic track archiving

* Added track review page improvements

* Improved keyboard responsiveness

* Improved WAAS performance

* Fix hang searching for POI

* Fixed elevation profiles to always use the most detailed DEM data loaded

* Fixed future plot with tracks that have no elevations in them

* Fixed issue with calculator % function

* Fixed issue with map POI's showing twice for a single point

* Fixed issue with Oblique Mercator User grid

* Fixed issue with stuck route button.

* Fixed occasional shutdowns

* Fixed shutdown on About Page

* Fixed spot sounding display on certain maps

* Updated map review of tracks and routes. The distance shown is now the distance along the route or track.

Edited by gr8scot

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Looks like Garmin have added a very useful new feature in their latest beta releases.

 

The Oregon x00 & x50's (also all Dakotas and the new GPSMAP 62/78's) now have a multi cache function that allows you to enter the co-ordinate of the next stage of a multi once you have completed a stage, and yet still have access to the paperless caching information. More details and links to the beta downloads here:

 

http://www.gpsfix.net/garmin-multicache-beta/

 

Recent beta releases have been causing problems on the Oregon, so you might like to wait and see what the feedback is before installing this, or wait for the official release. But it looks like a very useful function that's long overdue.

 

I should have waited - the update froze my GPSr - just gefore a trip to Europe and Armenia - had top use my backup unit. :):)

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I should have waited - the update froze my GPSr - just gefore a trip to Europe and Armenia - had top use my backup unit. :):)

 

Did you get it sorted out? A member of the Oregon Wiki created a recovery package to solve that problem on the x50 series? Details here.

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I should have waited - the update froze my GPSr - just gefore a trip to Europe and Armenia - had top use my backup unit. :P:huh:

 

Did you get it sorted out? A member of the Oregon Wiki created a recovery package to solve that problem on the x50 series? Details here.

Under warranty - after looking at it for 2 weeks - they gave me a brand new unit yesterday :)

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I should have waited - the update froze my GPSr - just gefore a trip to Europe and Armenia - had top use my backup unit. :P:huh:

 

Did you get it sorted out? A member of the Oregon Wiki created a recovery package to solve that problem on the x50 series? Details here.

Under warranty - after looking at it for 2 weeks - they gave me a brand new unit yesterday :)

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The update has been causing my Oregon to shut down. It must have happened at least 20 times this weekend.

Which model do you have? Many reports of problems with the x50 update, but none with the x00 series that I've seen or read about. Can you describe when the shutdowns occur or is it just at random?

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Does anybody know where one can get accessories for the Oregon 550 in the Cape Town area? I'm looking for a bicycle mount and I thought it would be quite simple to find one. I did find a supplier but he disappointed me so I'm trying to locate another source. Any web searches turn up plenty of suppliers but all over seas based. Any advice would be appreciated.

 

Regards

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I'm looking for a bicycle mount and I thought it would be quite simple to find one.

 

If you do find a supplier, I'd be interested as well.

Edited by Gr8Scot

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Try Allens Instruments. 021 797 1266. I've just ordered one and he is hoping to get it to me by Monday. I originally ordered it last week and upon inquiry this morning they tell me that the suppliers in JHB lost the order, thats why I was a bit unhappy.

 

However, to be fair, I have to say that I have ordered parts from them before and they delivered without delay. The price that I was quoted: R91. I can't remember if that was exVAT or not. Tell him that Edward Kinsey referred you.

 

Regards

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Hi there

Yesterday I copied some images and the auto archived and current routes from the GPS and then deleted them from the GPS.

This morning on start up, a message "System Software missing" appears and the GPS freezes. I can't connect to it via the PC to do anything. Can anybody help?

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Hi there

Yesterday I copied some images and the auto archived and current routes from the GPS and then deleted them from the GPS.

This morning on start up, a message "System Software missing" appears and the GPS freezes. I can't connect to it via the PC to do anything. Can anybody help?

 

If you hold in the power button while connecting to the computer, you MAY be able to force the OR into mass storage mode. It depends on what version of the firmware was loaded. If you can get it into mass storage mode there are various ways to try and reload the firmware listed here: http://garminoregon.wikispaces.com/Miscellaneous#FAQ-M3.%29%20Is%20there%20any%20way%20to%20recover%20a%20corrupted%20Oregon%20without%20sending%20it%20back%20to%20Garmin?

 

Also see the information in this link: http://garminoregon.wikispaces.com/message/view/home/24762997

 

Good luck

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Hi Gr8Scot

 

I so tried that but alas, it didn't work. I have the latest beta software on. (ver 5, I think). I phoned Garmin yesterday and they don't give away any secrets. "Bring it in" they say.

 

I have found a Garmin repair place in Capricorn Park which I'll take it to sometime this afternoon. He says maybe two weeks to repair. Its a seems to be slow process to rebuild the software! :( No geocaching for me this weekend it seems

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Just heard from Garmin.

They can't rebuild the software so they have offered me a new 550 at the price of R1024. I'm a bit peeved because its a software failure so its not my fault that it collapsed <_<

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Just heard from Garmin.

They can't rebuild the software so they have offered me a new 550 at the price of R1024. I'm a bit peeved because its a software failure so its not my fault that it collapsed <_<

Bummer - I agree with you - troll the international forums and see if there are any similar cases across the globe - how old is the unit? warranty still available?

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Probably quite new. It has the 2009 version garmin maps on it. But heres the thing. I bought it 2nd hand so all warranty details are long gone and not recoverable :rolleyes:

 

I did do a troll and there are exactly the same cases giving the same message. But they all lead up the same street. Back to Garmin to be rebuilt and thats when the warranty kicks in so no recourse there. I'm between a rock and a hard place because I love that Oregon but I'm resentful of buying a new one when I feel a software problem is not my fault.

 

What if it happens again a day after my warranty expires? Are they just going to throw the old one away? Surely not. That means the Oregan has become a consumable. When it stops working, throw it away and buy a new one. I can't believe that!!!

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Not a pleasant situation, but if I were in your place, I'd take their offer. Realistically, what are your alternatives? It seems to be their policy not to repair, but to replace. And as it's more than six months old (and second hand), the Consumer Protection Act won't help you. If you don't take their offer you'll probably have to fork out more than R 1024 for another GPS anyway, probably also second hand. Whereas for R 1024 you get a brand new OR550 (insist on a full guarantee)that will do you for many years.

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It does seem like a fair offer - but perhaps you can still contact their Customer Service Manager up in Joburg for a last try. I agree with your principle that it is a software problem - but the lack of warranty etc. is a bummer - I guess a bit like expensive BMW and Mercs that have Electronics that stop the car working - and only way out is to replace the black box at a high cost.

 

Hope you get joy.

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I have accepted their offer. There's nothing else I can do as if I don't then I'm stuck with my thumb up my b*m anyway. At least I'll start clean with a brand new OR with all its warranties. There is a small issue of the Garmin Maps that might not work on this Garmin. That'll cost me another R1000 unless I explore the Open street maps, (which I will). Still, it sticks in the craw that I have to pay when their software collapses.

 

The other thing is, I did install the beta version of software that was talked about in this forum. Could that maybe have been a factor do you think?

Regards

ed

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I generally stay away from Beta software, you never know what changes Garmin have made and the "surprises" that it may include.

I wait untill they release a full version annd then watch the forums to see if there are any bugs.

My Oregon 450 does what I want it to do and I am reluctant to introduce any performance bugs at this stage owing to Beta software.

 

If Garmin have replaced your unit perhaps they will transfer your mapping licenses as well - I have seen cases on the Garmap forum where they have done this for customers.

It may take a few phone calls or e-mails but better that than R 1000-00.

 

Keep an eye on the Oregon Wiki forum that Gr8Scot linked to - it is an extremely useful resource.

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