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Garmin 62s - brief random thoughts


Biker_121
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i'll like to share my thoughts regarding using the 62s - a lot of it will be in comparison to the Magellan Meridian Gold which i have owned for close to 10 yrs now. I've only had it for a week currently so i'll update this post as i go along until someone tells me to shut-up. My primary activity with the 62s is mountain biking.

 

- I love the fact that i can now lay multiple tracks with different colors on the 62s without any lines joining...the Meridian can only have 1 active track loaded and if u load 2 or more tracks they would all join up (this can be confusing). On the 62s i would load the relevant tracks and switch off my tracking and head towards the best track in the 62s - these multiple tracks are simply drawn into the 62s and doesnt affect the navigation in any way - i can even use a go-to and have line drawn to say...my car....and follow the track i believe will take me to the car - the purple (go-to) line will confirm i'm in the correct heading.

 

But u can only properly use multiple tracks displayed with the Tracking logging off - if the tracking is set to 'Record, Show on Map' there'll be a line drawn to the latest track on the map.

 

- I love the fact that i now have a proper map in my GPS - the meridian only had a basic basemap. I could truly navigate with it on my ride - the meridian could only record my movements.

 

Basecamp - this is a great software. And it's easy and intuitive to use. It works like it should - Basecamp easily allows me to load/manage my waypoints, tracks and routes. I'm also able to direct where these contents can be held - on the unit or the card. I love the fact that i now have access to maps and can load stuff to the 62s to use. The Meridian was quite limiting with it's software.

 

I think waypoints loaded from Basecamps are more accurate than the same waypoint marked by the GPS - do u think? My reasoning is the GPS's waypoint would be influenced by it's satellites calculation. So if possible - use the Basecamp's functions as much as possible to load stuff into the GPS unit.

 

The 62s screen is easy to read in bright daylight with the backlight off but once it's in the shade or shadows it's a lot harder to see. I'm not sure of the benefit of having 65K colors when u struggle to see the map in the shadows/shade going down the mountain path.

 

Garmin - u need to have a function to totally clear the map of all user contents loaded ie. waypoints, tracks and routes. I currently can delete all waypoints loaded onto the map but the multiple tracks have to be each manually "hidden" to remove them from the map. There is a master reset but it will erase all the settings too - so i will stay away from that.

 

OMG - How would one use the tracking - "Record, Do Not Show" - in what situation would something like that be useful?

Edited by Biker_121
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Sounds like you're really getting in to it.....we don't do pure hiking / biking so I only use " back-track" to get out of the woods when we've gone off trail quite a bit.

Re the Meridian, detail maps were always available ( Mapsend and Direct Route ). With late firmware installed ( 5.35 or 5.40 ) your Gold can carry detail maps of the whole U.S. and still have room for 14,000,000 caches all on a 2G card SD card.

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OMG - How would one use the tracking - "Record, Do Not Show" - in what situation would something like that be useful?

 

Funny you should ask.

 

I use that very function about 80-90% of the time.

 

I always record track logs (because I can) and generally I do not want them cluttering up the screen. Usually with my GPS, it is about where I am going rather than where I have been. If I want to see where I have been for any reason, I can briefly switch to 'show on screen' as necessary.

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The 62s screen is easy to read in bright daylight with the backlight off but once it's in the shade or shadows it's a lot harder to see. I'm not sure of the benefit of having 65K colors when u struggle to see the map in the shadows/shade going down the mountain path.

 

 

Agreed. The visibility of my eTrex30 display is far far worse than the old Legend. With currently available affordable display technology, my ideal gps would have a super high res monochrome screen, and a dedicated button for "cycling" the visibility of the objects on the map. (Emphasize visibility of contourlines/water, emphasize visibility of points/cities... etc.)

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Sounds like you're really getting in to it.....we don't do pure hiking / biking so I only use " back-track" to get out of the woods when we've gone off trail quite a bit.

Re the Meridian, detail maps were always available ( Mapsend and Direct Route ). With late firmware installed ( 5.35 or 5.40 ) your Gold can carry detail maps of the whole U.S. and still have room for 14,000,000 caches all on a 2G card SD card.

 

There are so much more map choices from various sources for the Garmin and softwares that prefer to work with a Garmin. Magellan maps are quite rare in comparison and you are pretty much stuck with whatever magellan offers - i might be wrong - i haven't done any serious research on it.

 

I have been lusting for a Garmin 60 type GPS after they were first available. My Meridian Gold, while extremely accurate and has a great large mono LCD screen which made it easy to see in nearly any light possible was a plain jane compared to the color screen of the 60. Plus i envied the longer battery life of the Garmins over my meridian. So when i saw the 62s for $299 at DSE - i couldn't believe my eyes - woohoo new toy.

Edited by Biker_121
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Even when using the backlight?

 

Oh no, I am talking about backlight free operation. Visibility of the transreflective color LCDs used by garmin is always best at full backlight, even in the midst of day, but that's "cheating" in my book. People might not like the concept of staring into a strong light source while out in the bush for a variety of reasons - killed darkness vision for minutes could be one. The "night" mode on the color screens does however help quite a bit, at least then you can make out big numbers in dusk. While no biggie or deal breaker for me I do think the mono screens had superior readability.

 

Best of them all is electronic ink, by the way. I'm not sure if that technology has evolved into high resolution yet though.

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Even when using the backlight?

 

Oh no, I am talking about backlight free operation. Visibility of the transreflective color LCDs used by garmin is always best at full backlight, even in the midst of day, but that's "cheating" in my book. People might not like the concept of staring into a strong light source while out in the bush for a variety of reasons - killed darkness vision for minutes could be one. The "night" mode on the color screens does however help quite a bit, at least then you can make out big numbers in dusk. While no biggie or deal breaker for me I do think the mono screens had superior readability.

 

Best of them all is electronic ink, by the way. I'm not sure if that technology has evolved into high resolution yet though.

 

The backlight option is not practical if you are in the outback or on a multi km moutain bike ride - i think you'll run out of batteries in no time.....so readability with the back light off is crucial prolonging the batteries. One would only use the backlight when it's attached to an external USB power source or if the light levels are low like indoors.

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The backlight option is not practical if you are in the outback or on a multi km moutain bike ride - i think you'll run out of batteries in no time.....so readability with the back light off is crucial prolonging the batteries. One would only use the backlight when it's attached to an external USB power source or if the light levels are low like indoors.

 

I measured my eTrex30. 90 mA on compass screen with a satellite lock. Full backlight more than doubles the consumption (190 mA). The increase in current draw seemed fairly linear to the backlight setting, i.e. 20% backlight = 110 mA. It wouldn't surprise me if a gpsmap draws more backlight juice as the screen is bigger.

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Another praise for the GPSMAP 62s - i was trying out the road routing and found it to be excellent. The POI search function was also incredibly powerful - we were looking for the nearest Caltex petrol station and the GPS was able to use arrows to show which would be the nearest Caltex ahead....some were on the right, some behind but i was interested only on the ones that were ahead of my direction of travel - the arrows helped incredibly. The TomTOm automobile GPS certainly don't have arrows dynamically pointing to each POIs as u move along.....it was simply so good to see these arrows get updated as we moved along. Certainly a very quick way to see the nearest POI - because i don't want to turn back to the nearest 1km Caltex when up straight ahead at 2km there's another Caltex....way to go Garmin. U have me looking into your automobile GPSes now!

Edited by Biker_121
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