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Additional Maps and Methods

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I've recently recieved my Garmin 450 for Padre's Day, and am looking at purchasing the Mid West Topo map from the Garmin website.


I've seen that they offer three different ways of delivery for the map, Download, CD, and SD card.


I am wondering which is considered the best way to get this map?


Is it better to have the maps resident in the internal memory for faster access? Or is it better to have it on the SD card so you can swap it out quicker?


Lastly, is the map worth the cost outlay. I imagine that it has to be much more detailed than the basic map that came with the unit..but are there other sources out that that are as good?


Sorry for all the questions, I'm still wading into this new world here and trying to figure my way through without missing out on some neat caches of info along the way. ;)

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In the past, the CD option was considered the most flexible. With BaseCamp's ability to display the GPSr's mapset data this has slightly change. Numerous previous posts have mentioned the pro's and con's of each; one of those posters will probably point you to them or cut and paste their response here.


I would expect internal memory to be slightly faster; however, I doubt it would make a noticable difference in normal usage.


'Worth it' depends on what you require/are looking for. Garmin's website allows you to view an area of you choice for many of their products. The gpsfiledepot has many free mapsets available. Free mapsets are also available from other sources.

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the SD card option is meant for people who don't have enough free storage on their device and want to have the full mapset available all the time. their page talks about the map being 350 MB in size, so if your 450 is still "empty", you don't need an SD card. the "smaller" oregon models don't have as much internal storage, so SD card is the only option for those.


the "download" and "CD" options are equivalent in usage, only difference will be price (ISP charges may apply), availability and how fast you get them.


i don't see the point in using an SD card unless you actually need the space. plus, if at any point you do need the space, you can also get an additional SD card yourself and put anything you need on there.

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Don't buy it yet! Try the free maps from here. They are as detailed as Garmin's 24k Maps. The only difference is they do not do autorouting or have Garmin's POIs for hotels, restaurants etc.




What I did was buy Garmin's City Navigator map for the Whole US, and then use the free Topos. This gives you covereage for almost everywhere!


These maps also work with Basecamp. not 3-d view though.


Use these tutorials to help you load them on your gps.





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For me, getting the DVD version of maps is preferable, but you should also get a microSD card of 4GB or more.


I avoid the microSD card versions because you can install the contents of the DVD onto your microSD card and still have room for more maps like Garmin BirdsEye aerial maps or the excellent free topos from www.GPSfiledepot.com


The advantage of the DVD over download is that you have a hard copy to re-install should (when) your hard drive fails.


The street maps on City Navigator NT take up just over 2GB for all of the US & Canada.

1:24K topos of California are around 1GB, so that should give you an idea of the space you might need.

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