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Garmin Montana 650

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Regardless of which side they're wired (switched or unswitched side for power), most of these outlets shut down during starting. For those that are switched, I haven't seen one that did stay powered during starting.

 

My old Ford Focus did that. One of the (very) few reasons why I liked that car. :laughing:

Edited by dfx

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Regardless of which side they're wired (switched or unswitched side for power), most of these outlets shut down during starting. For those that are switched, I haven't seen one that did stay powered during starting. So a docked unit is most often going to have to cope with the relatively quick off/on/off/on transition during starting. I'm working with another GPS with auto-on auto-off with power that doesn't always approve, either.

 

Agreed that it's a problem either way. But the circumstance of me placing the unit (turned off) into a powered cradle and watching as the boot sequence hangs up, the same as when the car is turned on while the unit is in the cradle, indicates to me that there's some compatibility issue with the cradle itself.

 

I've never had this much of a problem with an auto cradle before the Montana.

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Agreed that it's a problem either way. But the circumstance of me placing the unit (turned off) into a powered cradle and watching as the boot sequence hangs up, the same as when the car is turned on while the unit is in the cradle, indicates to me that there's some compatibility issue with the cradle itself.

 

I've never had this much of a problem with an auto cradle before the Montana.

 

I have no freezes with mine if it's off and does an auto start via mounting it in the cradle. Maybe try reinstalling the firmware and see if that clears anything up.

 

Also, I have mine set to automotive profile in the cradle and geocaching profile out of the cradle.

 

Edit: I'm running 2.60 firmware also.

Edited by bullygoat29

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@Phillips Family

 

You have a Montana issue, this is a hardware problem and your gps has to be exchanged with another.

 

Contact your dealer or Garmin, it gets only worse until it's so bad you can't use the gps anymore.

 

Is there information about this somewhere or will my dealer be aware of this?

Thanks for your response!

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@Phillips Family

 

You have a Montana issue, this is a hardware problem and your gps has to be exchanged with another.

 

Contact your dealer or Garmin, it gets only worse until it's so bad you can't use the gps anymore.

 

Is there information about this somewhere or will my dealer be aware of this?

Thanks for your response!

 

I think I am have that sort of problem too. Mostly along the bottom and lower right when I hold the unit in landscape mode. Recalibrated the screen many times and I am still having to be a finger-width off the side of a button to get it.

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Used the auto mount for the first time today for a 50 mile trip to hunt down two caches (FW 2.6). I have it set to be in automotive mode when mounted and Geocache mode when it's not.

 

The Montana performed exactly as I expected it should. The voice prompts are very loud and clear. The mode switching worked as expected. No issues except one questionable route choice that was simply bypassed but may have been better in the long run.

 

I drive a late model Taurus SHO and it has an accessory port in the console which is where I plugged in the auto mount. This port does not turn off with the car nor does it turn off while starting the car. So I was unable to test if a quick off/on like many vehicles would have caused me any issues. But, I'm sure I'll find out this weekend when we go caching in the Camry which does turn off power to the accessories when the ignition is off.

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OK, I must ask since I've been looking through the manual and the menus like crazy.

How do you get the auto switch to work? I just got the mount, and I just can't get it :)

/Andre4s

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OK, I must ask since I've been looking through the manual and the menus like crazy.

How do you get the auto switch to work? I just got the mount, and I just can't get it :)

/Andre4s

 

Baffled me, too, for a while. Setup->Profiles->sub-menu (three bar thingie)->Set Mount Profiles

 

There you'll find Automotive Mount, Rugged Mount, Not Mounted, and External Power Only. You can set each to a specific profile or Last Used or No Change.

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OK, I must ask since I've been looking through the manual and the menus like crazy.

How do you get the auto switch to work? I just got the mount, and I just can't get it :)

/Andre4s

 

Baffled me, too, for a while. Setup->Profiles->sub-menu (three bar thingie)->Set Mount Profiles

 

There you'll find Automotive Mount, Rugged Mount, Not Mounted, and External Power Only. You can set each to a specific profile or Last Used or No Change.

Ah, we have to get used to that menu as well... Many thanks!

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Still running 2.4 Didn't get to use my Montana as much as I had hoped while in NYC, but DID use it. Around Battery Park on the south tip of Manhattan I had pretty good reception (better than my smart phone), even in the Wall St. area. The multi I was searching for had 6 stages, most of them being in areas where buildings climbed to the sky. Reception put me +/- 10ft every time. Inputting the next stage was easy and quick with no noticeable problems. The final stage was in Battery Park (clear view except for trees) and got me within 5 ft.

 

2nd cache in NYC was in Central Park. Satellite lock took a bit longer than usual (like my 60csx usual lock) but once locked it was fine. It took me to within 8 ft. at GZ pretty consistently (had a bit of time to wander around and approach from different angles).

 

Minor issues - I know you can lock the "view" when looking at the screen - vertical or landscape - but it seems almost hypersensitive when changing from one view to the other.

 

Took one picture of the Statue of Liberty and then downloaded it when I got home earlier this week. EVERY time I plug in, the photo download screen boots up, even though there's nothing in there. Saw that this was apparently updated in the latest firmware release.

 

The terrain/difficulty star display (mentioned earlier and apparently addressed in 2.7) was right UNTIL you left the initial screen after hitting "GO". Upon return was when it changed to a 1/1.

 

Every once in a while, while standing still in the compass mode, the distance to target would jump (up or down) about 10 feet. Most of the time I was already at GZ so it didn't affect my search area. However, last night when I did a traditional back in the home area, it put me at two areas within a 20 ft. range. It was an easy key holder so it didn't really matter. I calibrated the compass (had problems getting through the third step this time) and still had the small jump. Tried (on a lark) the figure 8 calibration like on my smart phone and it apparently worked as I ended up at 4 ft. Not sure if that's the proper way to go, but I'll try again.

 

Not using it as an auto GPS yet, although I have used the navigating to cache via the automobile driving. I knew where I was going, but it took me on a different route than I would have taken.

 

Loaded a 1000 cache PQ pain-free just the other day and haven't noticed any problem when finding next closest. The one thing I don't like is that it limits the # of caches it shows from your current location in the default drop-down menu. Once you reach a certain # (or distance - not sure which it is) you aren't allowed to view any more. I know you can search by name and GC#, but that might not help. The one thing I haven't tried yet is touching the cache on the map to see if I can call it up in order to search for it. Don't know if it works, but will try at a later date.

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Loaded a 1000 cache PQ pain-free just the other day and haven't noticed any problem when finding next closest. The one thing I don't like is that it limits the # of caches it shows from your current location in the default drop-down menu. Once you reach a certain # (or distance - not sure which it is) you aren't allowed to view any more. I know you can search by name and GC#, but that might not help. The one thing I haven't tried yet is touching the cache on the map to see if I can call it up in order to search for it. Don't know if it works, but will try at a later date.

 

This is more than likely corrected in a firmware update. I just scrolled down to 40 miles from my center point which is roughly 2200 caches.

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Is there any way to view the current clock seconds on the 650t? I haven't found a way to show anything other than hh:mm on any screen.

Thanks,

Wayne

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Is there any way to view the current clock seconds on the 650t? I haven't found a way to show anything other than hh:mm on any screen.

Thanks,

Wayne

 

I dont believe so, but there is a stopwatch function if you just need to count seconds for some reason.

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Trip Computer>Menu>Big Numbers

 

Jim

And there it is! Thanks, probably would not have tripped on this.

Wayne

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Someone else helped me find it. I never would have found it either. I need the seconds to set a camera clock to geotag images.

 

Jim

Yes, thank you.

 

I will also use it for geotagging.

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Someone else helped me find it. I never would have found it either. I need the seconds to set a camera clock to geotag images.

 

Jim

That was one reason I wanted it as well.

 

I'm pretty disappointed in the 650t's camera. I didn't expect much, but it's pretty bad.

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I'm not super impressed with the camera either. It seems as though Garmin could perhaps improve on the camera end of the software. It's ok for pictures under perfect lighting conditions but anything else it has trouble with. I often find blown out highlights and under exposed areas in the same photograph. I haven't owned an Oregon 550 but can anyone comment on that units photo capabilities? Maybe the limitations are purely hardware but the 3MP camera in my 5 year old crappy cell phone takes better exposed and rendered photo's than my Montana.

 

Side Note: can anyone confirm the material that covers the lense? Is it glass, plastic? I can't tell and don't want to be cleaning it with a paper towel if it's not glass. Thanks!

Edited by yogazoo

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Here's a few from a 550t

DSC00014.JPG

DSC00016.JPG

DSC00017.JPG

DSC00018.JPG

This covers evening, inside, sun contrast, and, lit landscape.

Some things they got right on this camera, it's comparable to a recent generation smart phone camera. BTW I purchased the 550t because some dork in marketing priced it below the 450t, not because it has a camera.

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I have made a Caribina Holder for the Montana.

 

The strap is so short that the Caribina can't touch the screen. :D:D

 

GarminCaribina.jpg

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Allow me to air a gripe I've had ever since Garmin's Topo 24K product has come out. Why can't Garmin color the trails something more like a trail and less like an unpaved road. None of the trails on their flagship topo product can be distinguished from roads. This is a product geared toward the outdoor crowd and they can't give the trails a different color? Like dashed red lines? I'm suprised that someone at Garmin who likes to go hiking hasn't been annoyed buy this and has offered a suggestion to fix it.

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I suppose it's possible that there are no trails in Kansas therefore nobody has noticed. :)

 

Here's the wierd thing, the trails in Garmin 24K are still a "trail" map object TYPE yet they look exactly like unpaved roads. Any of you who know about compiling Garmin custom maps knows what that means. I'm going to assume that the issue is firmware related because the firmware tells the unit how to display each map TYPE (unless there is a TYP file associated with the map).

 

I'm going to assume then that it's simply an oversight in the firmware and that it could be fixed. I'll assume that if there is no TYP file associated with a mapset there is a default set of display types the unit uses and those default settings should be in the firmware.

 

PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE someone at Garmin take notice to this issue and make trails look like trails again on the 24K maps. I'm absolutely forced to use third party maps that color the trails correctly (i.e. red dashed lines, or anything other than exactly like unpaved roads). I always recommend the 24K Garmin series to anyone who asks my opinion. The detail is second to none here in Montana. However the trails color issue is a major flaw.

 

Can anyone here offer insight on whether the default display types for each map object are in the firmware?

Edited by yogazoo

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I have just started using Garmin Montana 600, my first GPS. I'm going through the manual, and there are a couple of things I can't find:

 

Setup -> Adventures

For grouping tracks, geocaches, etc. I just can't find adventures, not under "settings" and not in the main menu.

 

Setup -> System - > battery type

I read that you have to change manually from Lithium to AA, but there is no option under "system" that contains battery info. I've only got GPS, text language, voice language and interface.

 

Are these items there? How can I find them?

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I have just started using Garmin Montana 600, my first GPS. I'm going through the manual, and there are a couple of things I can't find:

 

Setup -> System - > battery type

I read that you have to change manually from Lithium to AA, but there is no option under "system" that contains battery info. I've only got GPS, text language, voice language and interface.

 

Are these items there? How can I find them?

 

The lithium battery is automatically detected and the option is not there. You only get the battery type option when using AA’s.

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I have just started using Garmin Montana 600, my first GPS. I'm going through the manual, and there are a couple of things I can't find:

 

Setup -> Adventures

For grouping tracks, geocaches, etc. I just can't find adventures, not under "settings" and not in the main menu.

 

Are these items there? How can I find them?

The Adventures option has not been added to the Firmware yet. I understand that it is on Garmins To Do list.

Edited by Catch

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I have made a Caribina Holder for the Montana.

 

The strap is so short that the Caribina can't touch the screen. :D:D

 

GarminCaribina.jpg

 

Nice idea. I did the same thing only used some double sided velcro after trimming the width. I couldn't pull it apart by hand so it should be good to go. Got mine today.

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There is lots of great information on here and thank you all for contributing. Now for the question. Does anyone know if the Montana can be connected to ones CB radio to transmit my position to others like on my old 276c?

 

If yes can someone show/tell/point me in the right direction.

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There is lots of great information on here and thank you all for contributing. Now for the question. Does anyone know if the Montana can be connected to ones CB radio to transmit my position to others like on my old 276c?

 

If yes can someone show/tell/point me in the right direction.

If you're asking whether it will provide audio out for DSC data, then no, it does not. Only a Garmin built for marine use would do that.

 

I never realized that anyone was using CB for that, though. I've only seen it over VHF, and then typically on Ch70 for casual use.

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Allow me to air a gripe I've had ever since Garmin's Topo 24K product has come out. Why can't Garmin color the trails something more like a trail and less like an unpaved road. None of the trails on their flagship topo product can be distinguished from roads. This is a product geared toward the outdoor crowd and they can't give the trails a different color? Like dashed red lines? I'm suprised that someone at Garmin who likes to go hiking hasn't been annoyed buy this and has offered a suggestion to fix it.

Unless your Garmin 24K Topos are different than mine (24K SW), none of the trails are named, only say trail. Imagine a highway map where the roads were not named. Invisible, unnamed trails, way to go Garmin.

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Unless your Garmin 24K Topos are different than mine (24K SW), none of the trails are named, only say trail. Imagine a highway map where the roads were not named. Invisible, unnamed trails, way to go Garmin.

 

In my region (24K North Central) Garmin did a great job in collecting regional forest service and municipal data for trails. The city of Helena, MT has mapped all of the trails in the foothills around town that Garmin has thoughfully added to the Garmin 24K mapset. The data is not easy to find and the fact that they went and grabbed the exact dataset from our town's GIS office deserves Kudo's. When I look at the naming of the original data and compare it to Garmin trails the names are the same. It appears as though the naming of these trails was only as good as the original data. Perhaps in your situation though it was different and the names got dropped for some reason. :(

 

Imagine a topo map where the trails look exactly like roads (grey) and are unnamed. The not naming I may be able forgive but not giving trails a distinguishing coloration I cannot. If I can't know the name, at least let me know they're trails without tapping on every grey line to see.

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I have played more with my Montana 600, and have run into some bugs. What is the best way to report/discuss bugs? Any Garmin forums or similar?

 

I am experiencing sudden shut-downs: Often when I click to enable a map, every time I try to change the elevation plot setting to "distance/time", and also with more random clicks.

 

On the main screen, I can't get rid of the arrows to move to right/left screen. I am able to move to the right, even though that screen is blank. This happens with the geocaching profile, but not with other profiles. It seems as though an invisible icon is stuck in the lower right corner of the right screen. Whenever I try pulling an icon into that position, the icon changes into a fully functional "tones" shortcut, and bounces back to its original location. I can't move any icon to the bottom right corner.

 

The predefined shortcuts to show/hide track log seem faulty. When I click them, the icon looks as though it is still being clicked (framed + darker background), until I change the view.

 

These aren't major bugs, but I'd still like to see them solved. Any suggestions?

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I upgraded to 2.80 before I started using the GPS, so the problems don't seem to be solved.

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In my region (24K North Central) Garmin did a great job in collecting regional forest service and municipal data for trails. The city of Helena, MT has mapped all of the trails in the foothills around town that Garmin has thoughfully added to the Garmin 24K mapset. The data is not easy to find and the fact that they went and grabbed the exact dataset from our town's GIS office deserves Kudo's. When I look at the naming of the original data and compare it to Garmin trails the names are the same. It appears as though the naming of these trails was only as good as the original data. Perhaps in your situation though it was different and the names got dropped for some reason. :(

 

Imagine a topo map where the trails look exactly like roads (grey) and are unnamed. The not naming I may be able forgive but not giving trails a distinguishing coloration I cannot. If I can't know the name, at least let me know they're trails without tapping on every grey line to see.

 

Found this on the Above the Timber website:

 

img01_article09.jpg

 

Trails (dashed red) appear at all but the least detailed level, so even at 200' contours.

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MtnHermit,

 

That's how the Topo's I make for Montana look. Red dashed lines really stand out and say "TRAILS" to me and most others. Garmin's flagship topo maps have trails and they look distinct in MapSource but load them on the unit and - crud. I'm assuming Above the Timber uses TYP files to acheive that trail coloration. By default (typing in the firmware) trails look like unpaved roads.

 

Perhaps after the beta software team fries the bigger fish on the Montana I'll suggest a fix to this annoyance.

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I bought one of the first ones out (650t) via the internet from a company named, "Digital Oasis". It was #127 from Garmins manufacturing line so very, very new. It had horrible screen issues and calibration was non functional at best with the device getting stuck in that mode and requiring battery removal for the reset. I called and received help from Garmin a couple of times. They helped me with a master reset and then gave me an RMA number and shipping addy. It seemed better so I did not send it in and receive another in exchange. Their customer service was excellent each time I spoke with them. Finally, my unit failed and right before departing on a two week backpacking trip, in RMNP and the desert SW. I broke the screen out of the unit tappng it with my finger. I called them and told them I had broken the screen in frustration by tapping too hard. Since I already had an RMA with good notes(it was over a month old)they gave me a brand new unit straight up and are crediting me back on my CC for the returned one with the broken screen; it had hardware issues over the top! Garmin sent my new one next day air. I got on the phone with them and they helped me transfer the ownership of my City Navigator unlock code so I could get those maps into the new Montana. Helped a little with a couple of Basemap issues on the phone and answered a pocket query question. BTW, the new one is another world; I can enter text accurately and quickly...everything seems to work great. I always upload new software right away so am running 2.80 with no issues at this time and I ran about 20 caches through it this p.m. Created several routes, etc. All is well....once you get one that works, it is the best ever. Plan to use it the next few weeks in RMNP, Bistie de na Zin Wilderness, Painted Desert/Petrified Forest, Sandias. Feeling pretty good about that too.

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Glad to hear you had a positive experience despite the screen trouble. Thanks for sharing your story. As stated above and in other threads, the main concern is the time to failure in defective components and whether or not you either have a bad one or a good one or if all units are susceptible over time depending on use.

 

I know this; I'll be using the crap out of mine and recalibrating the screen once a week until my 1 year warranty is up. If it's going to fail it's going to do it while it's under warranty.

 

Questions for those who had the problem. Did it manifest itself rather quickly? After the first calibration? After a period of time charging???

 

1) How long to first failure? Day, week, month?

2) Circumstances: after calibration, after a charge, etc.

3) Area of screen: Is there a specific zone or area on the screen that goes first?

 

Thanks

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Mine went back to garmin after touch screen trouble. No amount of calibrating was able to fix the problems. The calibration went "fine", but once in the menus or keyboard the buttons 2cm next to the actual press was registered.

 

The weird thing is.... when I got it, it was fine.

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@Phillips Family

 

You have a Montana issue, this is a hardware problem and your gps has to be exchanged with another.

 

Contact your dealer or Garmin, it gets only worse until it's so bad you can't use the gps anymore.

 

Thanks :)

 

I had the same issue. I didn't think it would be an hardware issue. (But mine was returned anyway.)

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It's important we all read this, not because of anything but to be sure as possible for ourselves.

 

Read this please

 

http://forums.Groundspeak.com/GC/index.php?showtopic=279922

 

Use your unit every day at least for 2 weeks, charge, use in in heat and cold, try the 'keyboard' once in a while, once you have the calibration issue you WILL know, because it's nearly unusable.

 

The nice thing; Garmin will swap your unit.

 

My question is WHY or WHAT makes this happen after about 2 weeks.

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Glad to hear you had a positive experience despite the screen trouble. Thanks for sharing your story. As stated above and in other threads, the main concern is the time to failure in defective components and whether or not you either have a bad one or a good one or if all units are susceptible over time depending on use.

 

I know this; I'll be using the crap out of mine and recalibrating the screen once a week until my 1 year warranty is up. If it's going to fail it's going to do it while it's under warranty.

 

Questions for those who had the problem. Did it manifest itself rather quickly? After the first calibration? After a period of time charging???

 

1) How long to first failure? Day, week, month?

2) Circumstances: after calibration, after a charge, etc.

3) Area of screen: Is there a specific zone or area on the screen that goes first?

 

Thanks

1) About a week

2) I noticed the problem first time when I loaded a large GPX file, but I think that was accidental.

3) Lower right corner when in portrait orientation.

It got worse over the next few weeks until it was unusable. Calibration did not help.

Edited by Catch

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Glad to hear you had a positive experience despite the screen trouble. Thanks for sharing your story. As stated above and in other threads, the main concern is the time to failure in defective components and whether or not you either have a bad one or a good one or if all units are susceptible over time depending on use.

 

I know this; I'll be using the crap out of mine and recalibrating the screen once a week until my 1 year warranty is up. If it's going to fail it's going to do it while it's under warranty.

 

Questions for those who had the problem. Did it manifest itself rather quickly? After the first calibration? After a period of time charging???

 

1) How long to first failure? Day, week, month?

2) Circumstances: after calibration, after a charge, etc.

3) Area of screen: Is there a specific zone or area on the screen that goes first?

 

Thanks

1) Mine lasted about 6 weeks before the screen went kablooey.

2) Nothing that I can specifically point at. I'd been using it that day then got another PQ on it and from that point I couldn't press the lower right button in portrait mode.

3) lower right corner won't work in portrait mode - specifically the right-most button. The others on the bottom row work fine. It's spreading upward though.

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Yes, I asked if I was one of the few experiencing difficulties and there was a bit of throat clearing........sure there is no way we will ever know the percentage that were/went bad or; if it was primarily limited up to a certain serial number etc. and that after that point, more bugs had been eliminated in the manufacturing process.

 

Concerning degradation in functionality over a period of use, I hope that I don't suffer that again.

 

Like I said, 2.8 loaded and all running well.

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