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cejs

Garmin 64s vs 64sc vs. 64st

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I'm leaning towards buying one of these models, but I'm not clear on what the differences are between them.

Also, I see these were first released in 2014. Does that mean I'm essentially buying 4 year old technology, or have they been updating things like processors and stuff over the years?

I like the hard buttons because it's very cold here in MN and these look like they will work well with thick, bulk gloves vs a touch screen.

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It is quite probable that they will be coming out with a replacement soon, but who knows.  The biggest downside to these models is the very low resolution screen.  Everything else is fine.  I would expect the next version will have a better screen and wifi/BT for Geoaching Live and such.  Most likely the same screen and button layout as the inReach units. 

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The 64sc is a more recent release. When the 64 series came out in 2014, Garmin didn't include a model with a camera. I guess they got enough flack that they added the 64sc in 2016.

The 64s is the "Basic" unit... actually a bit of an upgrade from the real base unit, the 64. The 64s introduces a magnetic compass and barometric altimeter. The 64st only adds a 100k topo map to the 64s, and some extra onboard memory to store the map. The 64sc adds a camera to the 64s. 

In my opinion, the topo map that comes with the 't' models isn't worth the extra cost. There are better topo maps that you can either buy or install for free (legally). As for the GPS models with cameras, some people find them useful - the camera also comes with an LED light that can be turned on for a flashlight. But as a photographer, I prefer my dedicated camera with my cell phone as a low-end backup. The extra onboard memory with the t and c models doesn't matter to me because I store my maps and most my waypoint data on a sd card.

Edited by Mineral2
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5 hours ago, Mineral2 said:

In my opinion, the topo map that comes with the 't' models isn't worth the extra cost. There are better topo maps that you can either buy or install for free (legally). As for the GPS models with cameras, some people find them useful - the camera also comes with an LED light that can be turned on for a flashlight. But as a photographer, I prefer my dedicated camera with my cell phone as a low-end backup. The extra onboard memory with the t and c models doesn't matter to me because I store my maps and most my waypoint data on a sd card.

Thanks for such an insightful reply Mineral2! I'm coming from a Delorme PN-40 from 2008, so this really helps. I was leaning towards the ST, but now I'm leaning towards the S with a memory card for extra maps.

I wasn't aware you could download additional map layers. Who would you say has the best topo layer? It would be nice to have a bike trail layer too.

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17 minutes ago, cejs said:

Thanks for such an insightful reply Mineral2! I'm coming from a Delorme PN-40 from 2008, so this really helps. I was leaning towards the ST, but now I'm leaning towards the S with a memory card for extra maps.

I wasn't aware you could download additional map layers. Who would you say has the best topo layer? It would be nice to have a bike trail layer too.

GPSFileDepot.com

You're gonna find you can do a lot more with that Garmin than you could with your DeLorme.

Enjoy!

Edited by Atlas Cached

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So after this discussion, I ordered the 64s last night, received it today from Amazon. Yeah, the resolution is low, but it's far better than my old one. I will say, I like how it feels in my hand too. I'm impressed so far. Sort of wish it came with a manual though. I found it online, but I'm sort of a paper in-hand kinda guy.

I did notice in the GPS settings that geocaching is set to use opencaching.com, but on the website it says "Although Opencaching.com is no longer available..." Interesting they would ship a product with an obsolete feature enabled.

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52 minutes ago, cejs said:

So after this discussion, I ordered the 64s last night, received it today from Amazon. Yeah, the resolution is low, but it's far better than my old one. I will say, I like how it feels in my hand too. I'm impressed so far. Sort of wish it came with a manual though. I found it online, but I'm sort of a paper in-hand kinda guy.

I did notice in the GPS settings that geocaching is set to use opencaching.com, but on the website it says "Although Opencaching.com is no longer available..." Interesting they would ship a product with an obsolete feature enabled.

Just set it to use the traditional geocaching settings and get on with it!

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On 2/3/2018 at 8:32 PM, cejs said:

So after this discussion, I ordered the 64s last night, received it today from Amazon. Yeah, the resolution is low, but it's far better than my old one. I will say, I like how it feels in my hand too. I'm impressed so far. Sort of wish it came with a manual though. I found it online, but I'm sort of a paper in-hand kinda guy.

I did notice in the GPS settings that geocaching is set to use opencaching.com, but on the website it says "Although Opencaching.com is no longer available..." Interesting they would ship a product with an obsolete feature enabled.

I am in the same situation as you!  I have an old PN40 that I use mainly for navigating to geocaches..(iphone's are not that accurate).  I use the SD card to load my pocket query GPX files.(much easier than connecting the device to my computer) even though  the 64s comes 'preloaded' ..how will you load additional  geocaches?  

Our Delorme PN40 always 'bricks'..(shuts down during use due to reduced battery power)  Hoping to get a new reliable device that I could use more than 45 minutes.  How accurate is the '16 hours' of battery time?  It appears they did not include an ac charger with this model...is that correct? 

Would love to hear your opinions on the difference between the PN40 vs 64s    ... screen size, resolution, etc

Would prefer loading satellite image maps...after subscription runs out...any recommendations on obtaining 'free' satellite image maps for uploading?

 

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12 hours is a safe usage time with Ni-MH batteries.  Easy to keep AA batteries with you.  Most people just cycle through rechargeable AAs.  Cheap and easy.

To allow onboard charging, you need to separately buy the Garmin battery pack or make your own.  Lots of threads on that.  With onboard charging, it charges when connected to any USB cable.  For normal caching, this works fine, plug in when driving.  You then only swap batteries when on multi day backpack trips.

You can put pocket queries on the SD card or on internal memory to load caches.  There is no limit to the number.

The satellite images will keep working after the subscription.  You just can't add new ones.

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Saw the 64st on sale at Bass Pro for $249 today.  The price argument about the maps is not as strong as it used to be.  With the 64st, you'll always have a map should you forget to download one from GPSfiledepot.com or Open Streets Maps.  I like to add the  OSM maps as an overlay to the Garmin maps which will additionally give you trails that have been added. Never had a problem with resolution which I am not sure is needed for what we do with the 64st.  This is a great time to be in the market for a GPS with feature rich GPS units selling for much lower prices.

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12 hours ago, PeoriaBill said:

The price argument about the maps is not as strong as it used to be.

I'm not quite sure what you mean. If anything, the free maps have gotten even better over time. Why pay for maps when you can get (often better) ones for free?

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Who does not love free maps? I find that using them in conjunction with the Garmin maps make for a nice combination map. The overall price of the GPS unit is becoming more attractive and the included map vs no map is less of a factor.  When prices are high, we all make value judgements about various options.  But for many of us, there is a threshold price below which we see a value in getting a GPS with maps. Don't know how else to explain it.  If you are dead set against buying a map on principle/price then no price would be low enough to persuade you to buy it. 

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