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FYI: REI sale - Garmin Oregon 600


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So is the 600 significantly better than the 450?

 

IIRC its main upgrades are a brighter display and landscape/portrait switch. Anything else? Battery life?

 

I've had no upgrade lust since I got the 450 ~5 years ago, from REI BTW.

It's quite an improvement over the 450. It's easy to see outdoors, where I had to turn my 450's backlight on in the forest at times (my 550, too). And it's much easier to type a field note. With the previous Garmins I was resorting to a retracted pen tip to type. You can charge the factory-supplied battery pack without removing the pack, and can charge its batteries individually in a battery charger, cool design. There are many new features, and it has more of an "App" feel to it. I've moved icons all around so the most often used icons are on the first screen in each Profile I use. And they can be re-sized. Garmin makes a cloth clamshell style case which is the only way I can avoid scratches on the screen (but I also have a screen protector), accidentally "pressing icons", or damage when dropped. It's a little slippery without a case, but you can use it with just the carabineer.

 

Here's a review and comparison: http://www.outdoorgearlab.com/Handheld-Gps-Reviews/Garmin-Oregon-600

Edited by kunarion
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It's quite an improvement over the 450. It's easy to see outdoors, where I had to turn my 450's backlight on in the forest at times (my 550, too). And it's much easier to type a field note. With the previous Garmins I was resorting to a retracted pen tip to type. You can charge the factory-supplied battery pack without removing the pack, and can charge its batteries individually in a battery charger, cool design.
That would be useful, I charge my camera via USB. Appears this could charge at the same time. Removing batteries to charge is a pain, especially with the SD card underneath.

 

I've moved icons all around so the most often used icons are on the first screen in each Profile I use.
The 450 can do that, but the exact way is a bit obtuse, so I forget.

 

And they can be re-sized.
Can't do that.

 

but you can use it with just the carabineer.
Use a fastex buckle, never liked the carabiner.

 

Does the Trip Computer have a date field, the 450 did not?

 

Thanks for the reply.

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Is it possible to disable automatic route recalculation for both trails and streets with the Oregon 600? (Assuming in advance that both street and trail routing calculations are supported now). I did look at the User Manual download, but did not find any answers. Thanks.

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Check the 600 wiki before you buy: http://garminoregon6xx.wikispaces.com/wiki/messages

I've owned 3 of the 600s in 18 months....finally went back to my 60Csx.

Ouch. The 450 has been so reliable. Another reason not to "upgrade"!

 

Thanks

 

Just a data point. I've had my Oregon 650 for two years now (ever since rollout) and have had some issues sure but nothing critical. I've had an Oregon 450 and the 6xx is a great upgrade. But if your happy with the 450 then maybe justifying the cost of the 6xx is more difficult. But at this price it's really a steal.

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Actually 3 data points, but not to minimize a single point be sure to check out the 600 wiki for a crowdsourcing the 600's unresolved problems. Your $220 might buy you a ticket to the Garmin "dance"...you know, tech support, update/rollback firmware, rebooting, etc.

If you are considering "pulling the trigger" on the 600 "bargain", rather than wait for the next model iteration; ".... you've got to ask yourself one question: "Do I feel lucky?" Well, do ya, punk?"

Edited by jimlarkey
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And to speak of the issues on the 6xx wiki. Most of those issues are geocaching related. Not all but most. With all the manipulations of geocaching GPX/GGZ files and all the data they contain by various third parties and softwares I'm amazed that there are not more issues. I might load a pocket query straight from Groundspeak once a year that contains 200-500 caches on it and have had nothing notable issue-wise for quite some time. If you're hardcore, mashing, splitting, combining geocache files you may experience more issues. My uses are primarily for navigation and data logging and the Oregon 6xx excels at the tasks I ask of it.

 

Bottom line, your experience can vary based on your uses.

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I'm somewhat confused by Garmin's extensive lineup of products. What are the main differences between the GPSMAP 64 series and the Oregon 600 series besides the protruding antenna and touchscreens?

 

How's the GPS/GLONASS accuracy on the Oregon 600?

Edited by Sgt_Strider
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For starters?

 

The 64 uses buttons for selection and data entry. The 600 uses a touch screen. Big difference if you're spending a lot of time entering field notes.

 

For some time now, Garmin has offered what are essentially the same unit capabilities in two styles -- button and touch screen.

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you've not made a mistake. There are a plethora of free maps you can use. Start here:

 

http://www.gpsfiledepot.com

 

All of the topo maps have roads and geographic features, but they're not routable - that is, you can't route to your location via roads. For that you'd want a routable map such as OpenStreetMap

(http://garmin.openstreetmap.nl). One exception is the map called "Big Desert Southwest" which I noticed in your profile that you live in Phoenix. This map may cover a lot of your home turf and is routable based on OpenStreetMap data.

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I got the REI flyer and was thinking of getting this.. I have been using the etrex 20 fo all my hiking and biking for last couple years and really like it, especially the battery life. But now I am looking at the new 20x and 30X which have better resolution, more memory and features with same battery life.

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I got the REI flyer and was thinking of getting this.. I have been using the etrex 20 fo all my hiking and biking for last couple years and really like it, especially the battery life. But now I am looking at the new 20x and 30X which have better resolution, more memory and features with same battery life.

 

It would seem that there's not much difference between the eTrex 30x and the Oregon 600 besides the touch screen. The oregon does have a larger screen size and has a Nuvi mode for use with routable maps. I suspect that there are some under the hood specs that are different, but can't be confirmed via Garmin's spec comparison page - those being things like processor speed and GPS antenna differences.

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Just as an opinion I don't mind touch screen or button handheld is it worth spending the extra 1oo and getting the garmin gps 64s or get the Oregon 600? I never looked at Oregon series due to price but now it's on sale at rei I dont know which one to pick up. Used for hiking and geocaching Pennsylvania.

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If the interface doesn't matter to you, then I see no real advantage to the 64s over the Oregon. In fact, the Oregon has some features that the 64s does not, including a higher resolution screen and a Nuvi interface for driving with it. The screen resolution is nice for looking at maps. The nuvi interface is less useful if you already use a nuvi for automotive navigation, though I see myself bringing the oregon on vacation in the future rather than bringing the nuvi which I have managed to scratch on the plane.

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Wow! Glad I saw this thread!

 

I've been in the market for some time for an "affordable" GPS that had the features I wanted, the touch screen is a big plus for me. I have read reviews that it is a bit sensitive since the screen goes to the edges of the unit with little/no border - accidental presses are a minor issue (from what I've read)

 

I think I can deal with that "minor" inconvenience though. i would prefer to have the larger Monterra (larger screen), but at this price I couldn't pass on the 600! :)

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I have a friend that says the touchscreen on the 600 is very sensitive, and that she has accidentally reset the unit on more than one occasion.

 

A review of the 600 says that a NiMH battery pack is a option, and that you can recharge it with USB. Now, what about NiMH AA's? Will the USB recharge those? I already have a very good charger, I might want to use that instead. If necessary, can the built in charging circuitry be disabled?

 

Because it is Android-based, can you download apps that use GPS and use them on the unit?

 

On my Oregon 450, I have a rubberized (silicone) case that is actually made for another unit (I think the Montanas) but it fits great. Is there anything like this, or any other case for the Oregon 600? What about screen protectors?

 

<more questions as I think of them>

 

thanks

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Now, what about NiMH AA's? Will the USB recharge those?

IIRC, if you produce a 'wrap' on the cells to fake the 'pack' wrapper, then yes, it will think there's one of its own NiMH installed. Have seen this mentioned somewhere around here.
I already have a very good charger, I might want to use that instead. If necessary, can the built in charging circuitry be disabled?
If you install regular AA cells without the 'cheat', it will not attempt to charge them since it cannot make assumptions about what battery chemistry has been installed. So if you wish to pop in your own AA NiMH and charge externally, it will leave them alone.
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I have a friend that says the touchscreen on the 600 is very sensitive, and that she has accidentally reset the unit on more than one occasion.

 

A review of the 600 says that a NiMH battery pack is a option, and that you can recharge it with USB. Now, what about NiMH AA's? Will the USB recharge those? I already have a very good charger, I might want to use that instead. If necessary, can the built in charging circuitry be disabled?

 

Because it is Android-based, can you download apps that use GPS and use them on the unit?

 

On my Oregon 450, I have a rubberized (silicone) case that is actually made for another unit (I think the Montanas) but it fits great. Is there anything like this, or any other case for the Oregon 600? What about screen protectors?

 

<more questions as I think of them>

 

thanks

Tell your friend to go to Setup->Accessibility->Touch Sensitivity-> then switch from High to Normal

 

You can charge a pair of NiMH if you close the switch between the cells. There is another thread here that explains this.

 

Why do you think it is Android based like the Monterra? I don't see anything in the copyright info mentioning anything that would point to that being so.

 

I got the GizzMoVest case for mine as well as an ArmorSuit military shield screen protector. Money well spent as I'm pretty hard on my gear ?

 

BlueTooth works well with the iPhone pulling data off the cloud, try that with an eTrex

Edited by coggins
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I have a friend that says the touchscreen on the 600 is very sensitive, and that she has accidentally reset the unit on more than one occasion.

 

A review of the 600 says that a NiMH battery pack is a option, and that you can recharge it with USB. Now, what about NiMH AA's? Will the USB recharge those? I already have a very good charger, I might want to use that instead. If necessary, can the built in charging circuitry be disabled?

 

Because it is Android-based, can you download apps that use GPS and use them on the unit?

 

On my Oregon 450, I have a rubberized (silicone) case that is actually made for another unit (I think the Montanas) but it fits great. Is there anything like this, or any other case for the Oregon 600? What about screen protectors?

 

<more questions as I think of them>

 

thanks

I own a nice protective cloth case (video below), but was trying a different case. Still I was confident that I wouldn't need a screen protector. I applied an "ArmorSuit MilitaryShield" anyway. And I went caching and somehow scratched the shield almost immediately :yikes: (It's "self-healing", plus simple to change).

 

I have the Garmin clamshell case. It protects the GPSr well and prevents phantom menu selection. It's a little bigger than I'd think it needs to be, but it is my favorite case. It opens to a great viewing angle when clipped to a backpack's shoulder strap. The video shows the guy using the GPSr in its Velcro mount, but to do a search or type a Field Note, I pull the GPSr up from its Velcro so I can hold the device. You'll probably find a better deal than at "GPS City". But this video shows how the case works.

 

 

Edited by kunarion
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I own a nice protective cloth case (video below), but was trying a different case. Still I was confident that I wouldn't need a screen protector. I applied an "ArmorSuit MilitaryShield" anyway. And I went caching and somehow scratched the shield almost immediately :yikes: (It's "self-healing", plus simple to change).

 

Keep in mind that many screen protectors aren't as hard or scratch resistant as the glass on the screen, so when you say you were out and scratched the screen protector, don't assume that you would have gotten the same scratch on the screen. However, I applaud the caution. I, myself, have ordered a screen protector, possibly the same ArmorSuit you mention above. I scratched up my 450t enough to be annoying, especially in low light without the backlight on full, though the unit is still useable. I'm not taking any chances with my new 600.

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I got the 600 at the REI sale on Friday. I like it, even with some learning curve coming from 3 years using the Etrex 20. 3 days of hiking, mountain biking and caching, and configuring the profiles and everything the way I want it. Compared to the 20, bigger, little heavier, less battery life, but the tradeoff is many more features, bigger screen and resolution, faster processor, compass, etc. I Loaded maps, PQs, everything working. Its a keeper. (My 8th unique handheld GPSr since I got the Garmin II in 1997....)

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I took advantage of the same sale at Cabelas after my 450 died, FWIW this is what I think.

It's been 13 days with the Oregon 600. Here is my assessment so far, not that it means anything....

Issues with the 600.

1) Freezes up continually. Normally when switching functions. At least 4 times an hour, during continuous use. Even after all firmware updates, still freezes- you can't shut it off, you have to remove the batteries and let it die, give it a few minutes and then load batteries and start it up again. VERY frustrating!

2) Touch screen is WAY too sensitive!!! CONSTANT switching functions and settings while normal carrying and use. Doesn't seem to be as ruggedly handleable as the 450, more like a phone. there are only 2 settings- Normal and Very Sensitive, both are too sensitive.

3) WAY too easy to accidentally restore defaults. May not be an issue if the screen was not as sensitive.

4) There is no finds counter on the dashboard. On the 450 I would use the "Geocaching-Nearest" Profile, that is not even offered. (if I could find the profile in the 450 I'd like to copy it and try to install it in the 600!!!) In order to see how many you have found, you need to scroll out to settings >geocache>count. Very inconvenient.

5) No more "open chest" when you find it. The cache disappears. Doesn't sound like a huge issue, but it is if you are doing power caching. You need the "finds" as a quick point of reference when overlooking the map for routing and areas visited.

6) The processor doesn't seem like it can keep up. It is probably technically superior spec-wise, over the Oregon 450, but with the 600 you need to wait a few seconds after you hit "found" before you can hit "find next closest" otherwise it will route you back to the cache you just found.

7) Seems to burn through batteries WAY faster than the 450. Chirp search feature seems to affect it occasionally due to issue #2. Settings are too easily change.

Some of these issues will not be noticed by most cachers, but for those of us who do this a lot, and/or as fast as possible they are bigger issues. I never had a speed issue, routing issue, or any caching issue with the 450, I would still be using it if it hadn't stopped working after 5 years and over 40,000 finds. So far I'm giving it a 4 out of possible 10.....

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Salz69 I also took advantage of the REI sale and got a 600.

 

I am also going thru the paces but I am liking it so far.

It does crash too much imo and for no good reason. Last time it crashed after I clicked the LOG button...

 

The screen is sensitive, I have set up the double tap of the power button to turn the screen off. No more inadvertent clicks on the screen that way.

 

About the open chest in the map display, the the reason behind that is because you have the geocache filter to NOT FOUND or some other filter that hides FINDS.

This is new from the 450/550 GPS. Your search filter in the geocache menus are carried over the map display.

If you want to see the found caches in the map then you need to change the filter in the geocache menu to show all caches or create a filter that includes found caches.

 

And that also explains why you find the processor to be slow. It has to reapply the filter to all your caches to figure out what is the next closest cache.

 

I am also finding that it uses the batteries way too quickly. I havent been able to find which setting is better for nimh's in the settings, if the NIMH or PRECHARGED NIMH.

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About the open chest in the map display, the the reason behind that is because you have the geocache filter to NOT FOUND or some other filter that hides FINDS.

This is new from the 450/550 GPS. Your search filter in the geocache menus are carried over the map display.

If you want to see the found caches in the map then you need to change the filter in the geocache menu to show all caches or create a filter that includes found caches.

 

 

The issue with setting the filter to "not found " as well is that when you hit "find next closest" it will route you to the cache you just found.

Edited by salz69
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