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DeLorme - Never Again PITA


eosxt
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I Hate my GPS, wish I would have saved a few extra bucks and bought a Magellan, I'm stuck with this piece of crap that's good for nothing.

It never works. Every six months or so it just stops talking to my computer, I download ten times, run the dadgum program 10 times, restart the computer 10 times and basically waste hours of my life.

First it can't find the plug in (which IS there and used to work)

Then I down load it again, and again and again, nd again

THEN it can't connect to the device, but it did find the plug in and my GPS lights up when I plug it in the USB

 

DON"T BUY THIS CRAP, buy Magellan or anything else

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If you posted here to get help then you're missing some vital pieces of information that others can use to assist you.

 

1) What model of Delorme is it?

2) What is your computers operating system?

3) What exact operation are you attempting to perform?

 

As a previous poster pointed out, it sounds like your computer is the culprit and NOT the Delorme GPS. However based upon your poorly and hastily written thread title and unwarranted condemnation of Delorme products tells me that you're more interested in venting than finding a solution.

Edited by yogazoo
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I have a DeLorme PN60. I find the PN60 quite easy to use. On the other hand, the Topo software is clunky and hard to use. I spent a couple of days reading the manual and going through help files before I had everything working together.

 

Once I figured everything out, I am quite satisfied with the entire package. The downloadable maps that you get with a DeLorme subscription are great.

 

I'm using Windows 7, through VMware Fusion on an iMac for what that's worth.

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If you posted here to get help then you're missing some vital pieces of information that others can use to assist you.

 

1) What model of Delorme is it?

2) What is your computers operating system?

3) What exact operation are you attempting to perform?

 

As a previous poster pointed out, it sounds like your computer is the culprit and NOT the Delorme GPS. However based upon your poorly and hastily written thread title and unwarranted condemnation of Delorme products tells me that you're more interested in venting than finding a solution.

 

Ni, I would really like the dadgum thing to work

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Sound like it could be a cable problem. They are known to develop breaks in the cable, so that they may work sometimes, and eventually not at all. If you call Delorme, they will probably send to you a new cable, as they did for me and others. In trouble-shooting, you have to consider the cable for any GPSr. (I have had a cable problem in another brand of GPSr also.) Compared to GPSrs that have mini USB connectors, the Delorme connection contacts are probably better for long term longevity on the unit. The negative is that you have to use their cable instead of a standard USB.

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I agree on the cable. I have a three year old PN-20.

 

A year ago it started having problems (would not charge or communicate through the USB) I did a continuity check on the cable and that checked OK. Problem was a slight oxide build up on the metal contacts on the outside of the GPS.....I guess handling (sweat) had slightly gunked it up. Scrubbed the contacts with a clean pencil eraser. Had to do that twice this year.

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Thanks for the input so far. I don't think it's the cable because I can send waypoints to my computer through the cable.

I don't know, really frustrating.

 

There are 4 very thin, delicate wires in the cable: ground, data transmit, data receive, power (+5V DC.) Sometimes only one of these is bad. My cable had the ground bad. (I checked it with a VOM and cut it open to see.) As mentioned previously, check for clean contacts. Also, check if the cable pins are all sprung out fully. Then try another cable. When you get another one, take the turn out of the ferrite bead. I believe they are failing partly because of the sharp wrap (turn) around the snap ferrite.

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I Hate my GPS, .......

DON"T BUY THIS CRAP, buy Magellan or anything else

Please allow me the opportunity to inquire regarding a reaffirmation of the suggestion posted above.

 

Due to your recent difficulties with your now out-of-production and no longer available for retail purchase PN-20 model, do you recommend not buying the current DeLorme production model, the PN-60, with which you have had no experience?

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Thanks for the input so far. I don't think it's the cable because I can send waypoints to my computer through the cable.

I don't know, really frustrating.

Taking for granted that you can follow directions,go to the Delorme forum and find the HARD format of the pn20 than download firmware 1.6 to desktop.Install AFTER format.SIMPLE,EASY.Remove sd card during process.

Edited by yellow-bird
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It's the PN-20 I've tried on my Mac Book Pro and on my Sony Vaio with window's XP

Funny thing is it worked about 6 months ago on both computers.

I'm just trying to send cache coordinates to my GPS

I'm gonna say based upon the highlighted statement that this is most likely a cable problem. Check the cable terminals VERY closely. If just one of them looks slightly lower that the others, that'll be the culprit.

 

One pin carries power (hence the unit lights up, etc.), another input, yet another output, etc., etc.

 

When you run into a sometimes it works--sometimes it doesn't situation during hookup, you must smell the cable as the problem.

 

It is not uncommon for the dedicated Delorme cable to go faulty as this. $25 gets you a new one shipped. I know, kind of a PITA, but for those that have experienced it, we have gotten smart and actually purchased two (one as a backup).

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There's a reason why Garmin's are the predominant choice by a huge margin.

 

Yeah, like Garmin never has any bugs in their products, heh :anitongue:

 

didn't say that but look around you everywhere you go with cachers and count the devices.

You also have to look at the size of the company and the amount of devices they have. Delorme has a few items, and Garmin has how many?

Thanks

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There's a reason why Garmin's are the predominant choice by a huge margin.

 

Yeah, like Garmin never has any bugs in their products, heh :anitongue:

 

didn't say that but look around you everywhere you go with cachers and count the devices.

You also have to look at the size of the company and the amount of devices they have. Delorme has a few items, and Garmin has how many?

Thanks

Apples vs Oranges.

 

Neither is perfect. ALL electronic devices have pitfalls, regardless of manufacture.

 

Aside from that, Delorme is a map maker since when, the early 1800's, or so? A relatively late entry to the GPSr market.

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There's a reason why Garmin's are the predominant choice by a huge margin.
You also have to look at the size of the company and the amount of devices they have. Delorme has a few items, and Garmin has how many?
Aside from that, Delorme is a map maker since when, the early 1800's, or so*? A relatively late entry to the GPSr market.

Garmin has hundreds of models. But would you offer the same retort if we limit the comparison of a single Garmin model against every single DeLorme device combined?

 

Start here: http://www.geocaching.com/reviews/gps_delorme and tally up how many DeLorme gizmos are reported as owned by geocachers. Include every one, even Bluetooth and USB pucks first offered in 2003. At the moment I find 13347, but that number will fluctuate based on when you check. Then look at the Garmin Dakota 20, introduced in 2009. Reported 18943 owned.

 

How do you suppose Garmin got to be a big company with lots of products? How is it that a single fairly recent Garmin model (not even the most popular one) has outsold all DeLorme unit combined? Could it have something to do with how well the products work?

 

---

*DeLorme has been making atlases & maps since 1975. GPSRs since 2003, handheld mapping PN-series since 2007. Source:DeLorme

Edited by Portland Cyclist
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There's a reason why Garmin's are the predominant choice by a huge margin.

 

Yeah, like Garmin never has any bugs in their products, heh :anitongue:

 

didn't say that but look around you everywhere you go with cachers and count the devices.

PC I know what your saying. I just was replying to this. If there are more Garmins and different types, there will be more around. I am not cutting anyone down just saying.

Thanks

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Yinnies: And I know what you're saying. But let's not mince words. Walt implied there are more Garmin units used by geocachers because they're better than DeLorme - at least for geocaching. And he's right.

 

DeLorme makes good products for specific activities. If you need their mapping software or one of their specialty products like the inReach, etc. But for geocaching? Dollar for dollar, feature for feature, overall reliability? You're better off with a Garmin. To dismiss quality/reliability issues and say the only reason Garmin sells so many GPSRs is, "um, well, because they sell a lot of them" -- that's just silly.

 

I am not cutting anyone down; just saying. :D

Edited by Portland Cyclist
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I have the PN40-PN60W. They are good GPS units and really quick for switching from driving to hiking and then off to get the cache. The software Delorme uses is quirky and gave me fits. Here is my workaroung and I am happy because I get over 6K caches loaded quickly and flawlessly each time. I use a macro in GSAK called DeLormeSegments.gsk. It will load the max caches your GPS can hold Center and N, S , E and W. You will have a file for each, for a total of four additional files surrounding your current position. As you travel, just switch to the appropriate file and you are good to go for a whole new set of caches. If you haven't tried macros yet, this is a simple process and you will appreciate your Delorme. So, if all you want is to load caches and go, then give this a try.

Peoria Bill :<)

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I am not cutting anyone down; just saying. :D

Nonetheless a nice hatchet job, again, Lee.

 

But back to the original poster's original problem. It is likely that a new Delorme proprietary USB cable will improve PN-20 connectivity. These cables were on sale at 20% off of $12.95 regular price last week when the thread started. Plus tax and shipping. Price is back up today. The PN-20 will likely outlast the new cable as well, so buying two might not be a bad idea.

 

At the time the PN-20 was released four years ago, it provided somewhat revolutionary downloadable map image file features based on Delorme's existing computer software. My PN-20 is still functional today, although my boot broke the original cable while being used for power in a van within the first few months. :)

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39_Steps: Gee, thanks! Did you really like it? :D

 

The hatchet was aimed not any person, but at a couple of silly ideas: 1) That someone can brush off quality and reliability issues as a factor in brand acceptance, and 2) That you can tack "just saying" on the end of a comment to avoid taking responsibility for what you said.

 

Still, I admit a heaping does of sarcasm (which I can rarely resist) can undermine a good point by open the door to the ad hominem fallacy: "Lee is mean and sarcastic, therefore his arguments must be wrong."

 

So you are completely right in taking the thread back on track and mentioning the hatchet. I am humbled :wub:

 

Staying on track, Eosxt gave two possible tracks to follow. Asking for help, or warning away from DeLorme products.

 

On the first, the consensus of past and present DeLorme users (including myself) is that he's got a failed cable. Common enough in PN models that DeLorme often replaces them for free even when out of warranty, and savvy users buy a spare, just in case.

 

On the "warning folks away" track -- well, shoot -- how can I say this without sounding mean and sarcastic? Whether I agree or disagree, it'll annoy someone on the other side of that debate.

 

If you have one and love it enough to deal with things like keeping a spare cable around, there's nothing wrong with that. But while I used to make qualified recommendations in favor of DeLorme, I really can't anymore. On features, price, and reliability they've lost out to Garmin.

 

It didn't have to be that way -- at one time I thought DeLorme would grab a much larger piece of the geocaching market. As you pointed out, the PN-20 offered some novel features a few years ago, and newer PN models improved on those. And the price point for a complete package with maps was always one of the things that attracted me.

 

But features and price points with competing models constantly shift, and I think DeLorme has been left behind as far as geocaching is concerned.

Edited by Portland Cyclist
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