Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 11
goldriver

Garmin Monterra - not so good first impressions

Recommended Posts

Until they solve (part of) the major problems, I think you better don't buy this model.

How loud? You have to ask around, for the multimedia you better buy a cheap model Android phone like Samsung or Huawei.

Garmin Monterra hardware seems ok, maybe you can try it out and send it back if you don't like it to your distributor.

Remember here, software issues are questionable and sometimes a perception, meaning this might not be a reason for the distributor to take it back.

Share this post


Link to post

Until they solve (part of) the major problems, I think you better don't buy this model.

How loud? You have to ask around, for the multimedia you better buy a cheap model Android phone like Samsung or Huawei.

Garmin Monterra hardware seems ok, maybe you can try it out and send it back if you don't like it to your distributor.

Remember here, software issues are questionable and sometimes a perception, meaning this might not be a reason for the distributor to take it back.

 

If you buy from gpscity or REI, no questions ask you can return the devices without even a reason in the next 30 days

Share this post


Link to post

pictures are not so bad

yes you cancopy pictures via file manager without connection to a network device

the only sound I tested was the navigation voice wich was not that bad but I did not tried it in open spaces so I could not say if the sound would be loud enough and now that I returned the device I can't test this for you

 

Make sure you don't buy this device to get yourself out of the wood if you are lost !!!

Share this post


Link to post

Well he's somewhere in Slovenia and talking about a local Garmin dealer.

But Rei is good, don't know if they have the same rules for that part of the world.

Edited by splashy

Share this post


Link to post

Monterra have good glass display. How to look picture on the screen. In Montana the pictures didn’t look goog.

The screen on the Monterra is nice, but it has the same resolution as the Montana. So besides from the improved background light, it's really not that much better.

 

There's so many issues, and so little response from Garmin. I would highly suggest you spend your money on something else than the Monterra.

Share this post


Link to post

Thanks all of you for the replies. Now I must decide If I will purchase Monterra. I dont now how much Monterras are sold in SLO but distributors is correct. Yes my be for hardware problems but on software problems the distributors cant have influece.

If I buy a GPS I'll report my experience.

Nice day Ivo

Share this post


Link to post

I just received a Monterra for Christmas. The hardware seems very nice. The only negative things are the speaker volume is weak and battery life seems short. If you turn off wifi and BT the life might be acceptable but I have not used it outdoors enough to know. I have the latests sw on it. The unit cannot direct you in a straight line to a point in the middle of an open field if you follow the map pointer. The compass on these units is typically off by 15 to 60 degrees. If you follow the compass pointer you end up spiraling in to the cache. This is not what you expect from a $700 GPSr. It seems to lose geocache descriptions, logs and crash often. It has been so frustrating to use for geocaching I have only used it out side about 3 times. Garmin started shipping these in June 2013. They had a sw update in October and December of the same year and these units still have very basic flaws that should have never been in the first units sold. After two sw releases the units still have very bad flaws. The unit has great potential to be the best GPSr ever for the enthusiast but I would not buy one of these untill you read on the monterra wiki that the sw update have really fixed the compass problem. Many people have sent there's back and I am going to send mine back also. When/If they get the sw and possible hw problems fixed I will buy on. As slow as they are fixing fundemental problem I suspect it will take at least a year to get them fixed.

 

Thanks all of you for the replies. Now I must decide If I will purchase Monterra. I dont now how much Monterras are sold in SLO but distributors is correct. Yes my be for hardware problems but on software problems the distributors cant have influece.

If I buy a GPS I'll report my experience.

Nice day Ivo

Share this post


Link to post

On last thing about the hw. I tried one night cache in the rain. The display touch screen worked very well. When the display got really wet with a bunch of rain drops standing on the screen on the screen the touch sensitivity will go down but I was very impressed at how well it worked. At some point the touch screen get flaky and I would have to wipe the water off with my wet hand. I would not consider this a flaw. I was very impressed. I have had similar experience with my Oregon 400. The monterra touch screen is much more sensitive than the Oregon 400 of course. The sensitivity is very close to the Itouch.

Share this post


Link to post

I just received a Monterra for Christmas. The hardware seems very nice. The only negative things are the speaker volume is weak and battery life seems short. If you turn off wifi and BT the life might be acceptable but I have not used it outdoors enough to know. I have the latests sw on it. The unit cannot direct you in a straight line to a point in the middle of an open field if you follow the map pointer. The compass on these units is typically off by 15 to 60 degrees. If you follow the compass pointer you end up spiraling in to the cache. This is not what you expect from a $700 GPSr. It seems to lose geocache descriptions, logs and crash often. It has been so frustrating to use for geocaching I have only used it out side about 3 times. Garmin started shipping these in June 2013. They had a sw update in October and December of the same year and these units still have very basic flaws that should have never been in the first units sold. After two sw releases the units still have very bad flaws. The unit has great potential to be the best GPSr ever for the enthusiast but I would not buy one of these untill you read on the monterra wiki that the sw update have really fixed the compass problem. Many people have sent there's back and I am going to send mine back also. When/If they get the sw and possible hw problems fixed I will buy on. As slow as they are fixing fundemental problem I suspect it will take at least a year to get them fixed.

 

Thanks all of you for the replies. Now I must decide If I will purchase Monterra. I dont now how much Monterras are sold in SLO but distributors is correct. Yes my be for hardware problems but on software problems the distributors cant have influece.

If I buy a GPS I'll report my experience.

Nice day Ivo

 

Actually, I think the Monterra only started shipping late last year so it haven't been on the market for that long.

Share this post


Link to post

I am not really sure when they released it REI told me they started limited sales in june. Seems like there was a bigger release around October. As of the other day if you browsed down the garmin web site from products to trail gps units the monterra was not listed. It is listed under support. I think they realize the problem is bigger than they thougtt. I think the unit is still in some beta test mode. The bugs I see should have been caught during formal software test which should always be done before beta release to a limited public test group . One way or another after two sw releases the compass should be fixed. They are lots of bugs and crashes you should not have to live till a sw release. Not being able to use the compass pointer to navigate to a geocache is just to much. Today it was off 80 degrees from my Oregon 400. The Oregon lead me right to the cache. I would still be spiraling toward the cache now if I followed my monterra. I got 4 hours to 50% on the battery today with the backlight, BT and wifi turned off. If they would just fix the sw!

Share this post


Link to post

I think they realize the problem is bigger than they thought.

 

One starts to wonder but there could be other reasons. The amount of time that has passed since the last firmware update is however quite troubling.

 

FYI, the Monterra is still listed on the Garmin website.

Share this post


Link to post

Thanks. Maybe I missed the monterra when I browsed down thru the products. The monterra is there now. I am working with the Potomac Appalachan Trall club to resurvey trails. We take pictures of signs and shelters so they know the location and condition of each item. . This information is used to update the AT maps for this section of the country. I have been dragging a DSLR and my Oregon 400 around. The monterra is the perfect tool for this kind of work.

Share this post


Link to post

I have not decided yet to buy Monterra. I read your comments and I am waiting for positive results on the Monterra. If something new please Inform us. I want to buy - Monterro - when problems with sw will be solved.

Share this post


Link to post

The hw seems very good. If they could just fix the sw.

 

It makes one wonder if Garmin actually go out and use their devices before launch particularity when basic functions like the compass do not work.

Share this post


Link to post

A lot of the issues really are not visible untill you are moving around in the field. I have wondered myself how garmin tested it. Some companies pick users to be beta testers. I doubt there was much testing of this unit. The Monterra Wiki is a good place to see the known issues.

Share this post


Link to post

I happen to know a beta tester of the Monterra personally. Garmin has a lot of good software engineers and the beta testers take their responsibility very seriously. There are many factors that push along product software development and not all have to do with the software engineers or testers. That said, it's my understanding that many of the issues have been reported long already and are actively being worked on by Garmin.

Edited by yogazoo

Share this post


Link to post

Ok

all of you which have Maonterra, have you resolved mistake. How works Monterra now after changes sw.

I found this link on net.The new must be better.

Share this post


Link to post

See my reply on post #56 of this topic, nothing changed. ;-(

Given the time Garmin needs for the softwareupdates, it seems they have MAJOR issues.

Share this post


Link to post

OK

Im wish to buy Monterra but by the way I have time to do it.

I dont need PPS necessarily. I have to give time Garmin.

Share this post


Link to post

On the compass issue if you download the Geocache app from the play store you can use the compass in that app pretty good. It is not perfect maybe 2 degrees off but usable. And if you use your phone as a hot spot you can Geocache any where you want pretty easily.

Share this post


Link to post

On the compass issue if you download the Geocache app from the play store you can use the compass in that app pretty good. It is not perfect maybe 2 degrees off but usable. And if you use your phone as a hot spot you can Geocache any where you want pretty easily.

 

But if you're bringing your smartphone with you to act as a hotspot, why use a Monterra in the first place? It just seems redundant to take two electronic devices that can run the same software.

Share this post


Link to post

Not the point of smartphone. I don’t need use two electronic devices.

Reason is that I wish to have GPS. I used It when I cycling or hiking and use in car.

Smartphone is not the same like GPS

Because I had Montana and I have for Monterra accessories like wireless temp. sensor,auto mount speaker, 12V USB power cable, bar mount.

I will buy Montera like I said but when the sw be OK.

Edited by ivoho

Share this post


Link to post

Not the point of smartphone. I don’t need use two electronic devices.

Reason is that I wish to have GPS. I used It when I cycling or hiking and use in car.

Smartphone is not the same like GPS

Because I had Montana and I have for Monterra accessories like wireless temp. sensor,auto mount speaker, 12V USB power cable, bar mount.

I will buy Montera like I said but when the sw be OK.

 

But many phones also accept ant+ devices such as a wireless temp sensor and all of the other accessories you mention: a USB power cable, a mount for your bike, etc. My original point was that if you're going to carry your cell phone with you to provide internet to the monterra, then why use the monterra when it does the same thing as a cell phone except make calls and access wireless data directly?

 

I understand that android phones are not great trail navigators. I would have kept the Montana for that, or replaced it with an Oregon. I just don't know that I see advantages of carrying a Monterra while hiking.

Share this post


Link to post

In something you're right. But Im already sold Montana. Now I will not re-buy Montana.

If I want to have a GPS I need to buy Monterra to keep the accessories which is not cheap.

My three friends have Oregon.

Only that I myself decided to buy at first Montana, because it had not yet been Monterra ( on market ) but now I have changed to Monterra not Oregon.

Share this post


Link to post

...if you're going to carry your cell phone with you to provide internet to the monterra, then why use the monterra when it does the same thing as a cell phone except make calls and access wireless data directly?

 

The Monterra is designed to be used as a navigation device. A smart phone is designed to be a phone first and the navigator functionality comes in a bit down the list. You can see the Monterra screen without a backlight in most lighting conditions, can use AA batteries, is waterproof, stores tracks and waypoints as easy to find and transfer GPX files, etc, etc.

 

I understand that android phones are not great trail navigators. I would have kept the Montana for that, or replaced it with an Oregon. I just don't know that I see advantages of carrying a Monterra while hiking.

 

It might be misconstrued by people who have never used a Monterra that it's simply an android phone with special Garmin apps. It's alot more than that. There are many differences between a Monterra and a smart phone that put the Monterra comfortably in the lead as a navigator. There are also many features on the Monterra not found on the new Oregon units.

 

I don't blame ivoho for wanting a Monterra and I also don't blame his trepidations over the current state of unit software. It is quite buggy and the user experience isn't polished by any means. The Monterra software has a way to go and oddly enough firmware updates aren't very prolific at the moment. Hang in there ivoho. By summer the Monterra, Garmin's premium outdoor handheld navigation device, should be a lot more stable and polished than it is now.

Share this post


Link to post

...if you're going to carry your cell phone with you to provide internet to the monterra, then why use the monterra when it does the same thing as a cell phone except make calls and access wireless data directly?

 

The Monterra is designed to be used as a navigation device. A smart phone is designed to be a phone first and the navigator functionality comes in a bit down the list. You can see the Monterra screen without a backlight in most lighting conditions, can use AA batteries, is waterproof, stores tracks and waypoints as easy to find and transfer GPX files, etc, etc.

 

I understand that android phones are not great trail navigators. I would have kept the Montana for that, or replaced it with an Oregon. I just don't know that I see advantages of carrying a Monterra while hiking.

 

It might be misconstrued by people who have never used a Monterra that it's simply an android phone with special Garmin apps. It's alot more than that. There are many differences between a Monterra and a smart phone that put the Monterra comfortably in the lead as a navigator. There are also many features on the Monterra not found on the new Oregon units.

 

I don't blame ivoho for wanting a Monterra and I also don't blame his trepidations over the current state of unit software. It is quite buggy and the user experience isn't polished by any means. The Monterra software has a way to go and oddly enough firmware updates aren't very prolific at the moment. Hang in there ivoho. By summer the Monterra, Garmin's premium outdoor handheld navigation device, should be a lot more stable and polished than it is now.

 

Have the Monterra received any firmware updates in 2014?

Share this post


Link to post

Non officially.

http://garminmonterra.wikispaces.com/Firmware

 

BUT there seems to be a Beta 1.17 for only beta testers and included in new sold models.

http://garminmonterra.wikispaces.com/page/messages/home

 

The fact we don't hear about it isn't a sign of having resolved the major problems on already sold units at all, it might be a 'new' (different pcb and components) hardware model with accompanying software.

Edited by splashy

Share this post


Link to post

Well, we'll know the next time someone buys a new Monterra and uses 1.7 whether that compass issue is fixed or not. Things could get interesting in the coming weeks.

Share this post


Link to post

Oregon 650t or Monterra? now I have the Etrex30, I would like to buy a faster gps.

What is the best option........... help me please to make the wright joyce......^-^

Share this post


Link to post

Oregon 650t or Monterra? now I have the Etrex30, I would like to buy a faster gps.

What is the best option........... help me please to make the wright joyce......^-^

 

I have both a Montana and a Monterra. The Montana is the one I choose if I want a gps. The Monterra is what I choose if I want to use a computer in the bath tub. :rolleyes:

Share this post


Link to post

I don't think it's mentioned here, bet there's a new software update for the 'older' Monterra.

 

http://garminmonterra.wikispaces.com/Firmware

 

1.16 and 1.17 are identical. I asked my contact for the Beta program at Garmin about that.

 

Here's what my contact said:

 

"I figured out where 1.17 is coming from. Just I suspected this is a factory release. This release is identical to the 1.16 release. No changes at all.

 

Someone pulled this from his device and is handing it out to others. Funny that someone hasn’t figured out that it is not different than 1.16.

 

Name Withheld

Software Quality Specialist - Outdoor"

Edited by Dr Jeckyl and Mr Hide

Share this post


Link to post

IT is a factory release version installed on the newer models and some new Monterra owners claim the compass issues are gone, with this new version.

Would be interesting to know how somebody pulled this from his device, because as far as I know this internal working memory isn't open for the user.

Edited by splashy

Share this post


Link to post

IT is a factory release version installed on the newer models and some new Monterra owners claim the compass issues are gone, with this new version.

 

You'd hear a whole lot more cheering if this did fix the compass problems.

Share this post


Link to post

I have bought a Monterra in Switzerland by mid February 14, unfortunately without reading this thread :-( After upgrading to the latest software with the Garmin Express I still notice and can reproduce all the issues with the compass, such that Geocache navigation is near to impossible. With wifi and backlight turned off the built-in cell lasts for less than 8 hours, such that the unit gives up upon most of my hikes. Because I often turn on then off the screen to save battery life, and the power button being very difficult to press with cold fingers, the display freezes or the unit crashes after a few on-off cycles in short sequence. Thus the tracklog was not complete, and trip data incorrect. This is just a short list of things where the unit is not working according to the specs. Of course I have asked Garmin Support Switzerland to take back this device for a refund, but did not hear a word from them.

Share this post


Link to post

Don't you have a return policy in Switzerland (at least 2 weeks or so?) Garmin probably won't answer, but your dealer/seller should.

Share this post


Link to post

We're not so well-positioned as customers here in switzerland. Meanwhile I did get the offer from garmin.ch to have the Monterra replaced by a Montana 650T, not sure though if they refund the price difference of about 100 SFR. They said that they'll transfer the Map licences to the new device, which sounds good considering the prices in Europe (I got maps from Switzerland, Austria, Germany, and France). I need a new GPS because the satellite receiver from my GPSmap 60CS gave up a month ago.

Share this post


Link to post

The T model is with a Topo map, I think I would take my <> 100 SFR loss (I would discus this with Garmin), because it takes to long for Garmin to make a decent software update, therefore the problems might be in the hardware.

Share this post


Link to post

Yes T stands for a pre-installed recreation map Europe 100'000, it's the same as was on the Monterra. I immediately bought a 32G sd card and installed openstreetmap.org maps on it which gives far more details, at least in my area. Both Monterra and Montana are available with a Swiss topographic map in vector format which is really good but cost some 270 SFr more. I already own this and used it on the GPSmap, Garmin offered to transfer this license to the new device. I asked them to do the same with my other topo maps from Germany, Austria, France. These are on CDROM and I want to download them all to the GPS sd card. If I'd buy a newer topo map it will come on its own sd card which will have to reside in the GPS because of the license. I would not be able to put together maps of different countries on a single sd card and will also have to play disc jockey in the field (a use case is mountainbiking in border regions, remember that Switzerland is about 200 miles across and spans 2 deg latitude, this is only sightly more than the size of a MicroSD card). This is another reason why I doubt whether the Garmin folks ever used and tested their gear outside of a laboratory.

Share this post


Link to post

Monterra is terrible. DO NOT BUY THIS GPS UNIT.

Preloaded the locations of a bore-field and power poles for a project...1hour later...learned 5 work arounds to make this happen. Once in the field and heading to the first location to drive a stakes in the ground, Monterra crashes and losses the data for all waypoints. Travelled for another 45mins back to the office to pick up another GPS unit, went out forgot the hammer for the stakes. Remembered the Monterra in the back of the ute, it drove the stakes in nicely! FYI Monterras' have low impact resistance. Returned under warranty, the product did not do what it claimed to do, failed to operate as a GPS unit.

Good luck if you persevere with its beta test group firmware. This is a premium priced product that failed to deliver any worth while results.

Share this post


Link to post

Is something new. My be new hardware in Monterra. Anyone has any information.

Share this post


Link to post

I was waiting 1/2 year to buy monterra. Its time now or not. If they resolved all problems or my be prepare new model. Someone suggested dont buy.

Share this post


Link to post

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 11

×
×
  • Create New...