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Bremar Josrut

Which Garmin

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As I am currently using my BlackBerry to do geocaching I’m looking into buying a proper GPS unit. I have 3 models that I can purchase at the same price. They are:

 

Garmin eTrex Summit HC

Garmin eTrex Legend HCX

Garmin Dakota 10

 

Now I understand that Garmin is launching the new eTrex range at the end of the year as well. So my question is do I wait? Do I buy?

 

If I buy, which model should I buy of the three listed or should I save a bit more to purchase the Garmin Dakota 20?

 

Thanks in advance for all advise.

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The new eTrex is already available overseas. See details here: http://sites.garmin.com/etrex/

 

Looking at the cost of a Dakota 20 locally, my suggestion would be that you rather look at a second hand Oregon 300. They can be found in the R 2000 - R 2 500 range and will give you FAR more bang for your buck than either the eTrex or the Dakota. Firmware upgrades are still being released (although I don't think that there's much more that can be improved) so they are by no means out of date.

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I highly recommend getting your hands on various options to play with before you make a final choice for yourself but here are my thoughts...

 

I had an eTrex and loved it. Its accuracy was good and the fact that it was (or still is I guess if it didn't get lost) waterproof made it very cool when the heavens opened. But I have to admit that I was never happy with the buttons that you need to push to operate the thing.

 

Then the Colorado came out and the Oregon soon therafter and I started a GPS fund in order to upgrade. Paddawan even lent me his Oregon 450 for a weekend to get a feel and I definitely preferred it to the Colorado.

 

Then, once I had the fund close to my Oregon target, the Dakota came out and its size, battery life, waterproof-ness and the button problem solution made the choice simple in my mind. The Dakota 10 is limited in comparison to the Dakota 20 (which can take a micro SD card but still only handle 500 caches) and so with a helpful link suggestion from Cape Doc to look at www.iwarehouse.co.za I got the Dakota 20 for cheaper than a new Dakota 10 at Cape Union Mart and am happy as a Geocacher in mud.

 

The ability to load OSMs came in highly useful during my trips overseas too. It really is a good product and wins/won my vote. The Oregon 550 is just plain beautiful but I can't justify that money and I don't like the size.

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The new eTrex is already available overseas. See details here: http://sites.garmin.com/etrex/

 

 

Sorry to say but the new eTrex is NOT available yet. :( Read this note placed at the bottom of the link that you refer to. NOTE: This device has not been authorized as required by the rules of the Federal Communications Commission. This device is not, and may not be, offered for sale or lease, or sold or leased, until authorization is obtained. Although they have already been priced, etc they are not yet available. I am keen on the eTrex30 that will be selling at $300 - the same price as the current eTrex Vista HCx.

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Hi there, I bought the Dakota 10 last year as my budget was limited and I wanted to go paperless. After my wife discovered the touchscreen she claimed full ownership to it and I only see the GPS if I have to load new caches. It is a dream to work with but I personally would rather go for the Dakota 20 with the electronic 3-axis compass.

Good luck with a difficult decision!

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Hi there, I bought the Dakota 10 last year as my budget was limited and I wanted to go paperless. After my wife discovered the touchscreen she claimed full ownership to it and I only see the GPS if I have to load new caches. It is a dream to work with but I personally would rather go for the Dakota 20 with the electronic 3-axis compass.

Good luck with a difficult decision!

 

Any thoughts on the 62S, it is R400 more than the Dakota 20 (http://www.iwarehouse.co.za/index.php?page=shop.product_details&flypage=flypage.tp-ecommerce.tpl&product_id=9157&category_id=11&option=com_virtuemart&Itemid=1) but seems like a much more advanced and robust unit.

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Any thoughts on the 62S, it is R400 more than the Dakota 20 (http://www.iwarehouse.co.za/index.php?page=shop.product_details&flypage=flypage.tp-ecommerce.tpl&product_id=9157&category_id=11&option=com_virtuemart&Itemid=1) but seems like a much more advanced and robust unit.

 

As far as I can make out the 62s is pretty much an Oregon 450 with buttons instead of a touchscreen and a quad helix antenna. I had a brief discussion with j4pos about his experiences with his 62s last week and he seemed happy with it. The firmware in the 62s and the Oregon seems very similar.

 

Something to be aware of with both the units advertised on the iwarehouse site is that neither the Dakota or 62s come with preloaded maps (other than the base map which is VERY basic - no good for geocaching). You need to add another R 1000 for Garmin maps to the prices you see. Then there's the question of whether to buy the map on SD card (which can be moved to another unit if you later upgrade your GPSr) or on dvd (which can only be registered to one unit but can also be loaded onto your pc)

 

Of course, you can always download and install the free routeable Open Streetmap, but even though I'm a contributor and big fan, I have to admit that in some areas it still needs development. In Cape Town it's probably better than the Garmin map, but in other areas it's short on detail.

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Sorry to say but the new eTrex is NOT available yet.

 

Thanks for pointing that out - I hadn't noticed.

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Good question about the 62s. After "my" Dakota 10 was hijacked, I purchased a 62s (as an upgrade from my 60csx which took a short cut down a mountain). It has a better screen than the Dakota but all those buttons....The 3 axis compass is an absolute must once you are used to it, but the Dakota is more user friendly in my opinion. I use OSM maps on both GPS's with no problems.

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I have the older 60cs which is similar to the 62s. I managed to obtain a 2nd hand Oregon that Kasimani found for me on gumtree. The oregon's touch screen is a dream to work with compared to the 60cs which in my view is clunky. I used to give the 60cs to my daughter to hold and follow the red arrow while I used the more expensive oregon. Then she discovered the oregon...... Now I'm relegated to the 60cs and I gnash my teeth, but one can't argue with a 4 year old little girl when she has her mind made up :rolleyes:

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Hi Bremar Josrut

 

I notice that there are several Blackberry applications for geocaching. Can anybody recommend one in particular?

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Hi Bremar Josrut

 

I notice that there are several Blackberry applications for geocaching. Can anybody recommend one in particular?

 

I'm currently on a 60 day trail with Geocache Navigator. I've been able to find 54 Caches so far. Only found out about Geocaching about 3 Weeks ago. :) I believe once the trail is over it will cost about R200 to purchase.

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Hi Bremar Josrut

 

I notice that there are several Blackberry applications for geocaching. Can anybody recommend one in particular?

 

I'm currently on a 60 day trail with Geocache Navigator. I've been able to find 54 Caches so far. Only found out about Geocaching about 3 Weeks ago. :) I believe once the trail is over it will cost about R200 to purchase.

 

Being an Android fan I haven't got any first hand knowledge but have heard of people using this, of course the barriers to entry are low, well, free actually so it can't hurt to try it out.

 

http://www.blackstarnavigation.com/

Edited by chingha

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Being an Android fan I haven't got any first hand knowledge but have heard of people using this, of course the barriers to entry are low, well, free actually so it can't hurt to try it out.

 

http://www.blackstarnavigation.com/

 

I tried this out on my Torch yesterday. Took me straight to a cache with no problem. It's a bit user unfriendly till you get the hang of it, but pretty good for spur of the moment caching if you've left the GPS at home I'd say. You have to have your pocket files sent to an email address at bcaching.com to make it work properly, but once that's done you have almost instant access to the 20 closest caches in your PQ. It will even route you via BB maps (but only on-screen - no voice or beeps when you need to turn). It can also create and store gpx tracks for mapping purposes.

 

I'd say it's excellent value for money (free) and there's effectively no data charges if you have BIS!

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We use the etrex Vista HCX (Rolf) as well as the Garmin Nuvi 500 (Silvia). We also have iPhones (Silvia has the 4, Rolf has the 3), and I've been using my iPhone lately because SASHA (my Nuvi 500) wasn't up to date with the caches. I found the iPhone to be very accurate and reliable.

 

SASHA has been great - I've been doing all my caching since Feb with her and I have successfully found all the caches. Sometimes, the co-ords are off, and you struggle to find the cache, but you would struggle with any device in that case. What is nice about SASHA is that she is great as a road GPS (good navigation) and she is great when finding a cache! So you get the best of both worlds with her. She is very accurate for a Nuvi.

 

Rolf always uses the etrex for placing caches, as it gives an average of readings for a point, so the co-ords on the listing are generally accurate.

 

A lot of our geocaching friends have the Dakota, and some of them are happy with it and others not so happy. So perhaps it boils down to a needs and personal choice thing.

 

Our advice is to try and hook up with cachers in your area, and go out caching with them and see how their instruments work out in field. Don't buy the new device just yet....

 

Good luck!

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Our advice is to try and hook up with cachers in your area, and go out caching with them and see how their instruments work out in field. Don't buy the new device just yet....

 

Good luck!

I'm not planning on buying just yet (unless I come across a offer to good to resist). I just need to get something in the long run as my BlackBerry Battery does not last a day when out Geocaching. At least I have a car charger so I'm able to "top up" so to say so that I can continue.

 

As I’m quite a newbie I don't want to go out and buy a device and then decide to upgrade in a year’s time (paying more than necessary if I bought the upgraded one in the first place!)

 

I'm also keeping my eye open for a second hand one.

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Our advice is to try and hook up with cachers in your area, and go out caching with them and see how their instruments work out in field. Don't buy the new device just yet....

 

Good luck!

I'm not planning on buying just yet (unless I come across a offer to good to resist). I just need to get something in the long run as my BlackBerry Battery does not last a day when out Geocaching. At least I have a car charger so I'm able to "top up" so to say so that I can continue.

 

As I’m quite a newbie I don't want to go out and buy a device and then decide to upgrade in a year’s time (paying more than necessary if I bought the upgraded one in the first place!)

 

I'm also keeping my eye open for a second hand one.

 

The other way to do it of course is to pick up a second BB battery, by far the cheapest way

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