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SkellyCA

Garmin eTrex 30x Issues? $130?

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Are there any known issues with the Garmin etrex 30x?

 

I ask because I just bought one at Costco for $130. I came home and looked it up on the Garmin site. It's been discontinued, anyone know why?

 

On the Garmin site it's listed at $299, On Amazon I saw them for $199. Then Costco(in store) $130.

 

I had been using an old Magellan Triton 400. The unit itself works fine but without software updates, it no longer works like it used to. For example, connecting to the geocaching site to download cache files. I've been having to have the pocket quirries emailed to me, then putting the into the software. It would only get worse from there. So it was time for something new and I had been looking for a few months but budget is tight. So I went to Costco today for other stuff today and saw these, so I grabbed one(well the cardboard thing, lol). The eTrex 30x seems better than what I had, though I'm just setting it up and playing with it. I do know that Costco has a good return policy, sonot to worried.

 

Any tips, trick or other advice, suggestions?

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It was discontinued, because there is a newer model, the 32X, that came out in June this year.  There is very little different with the new model (more memory and preloaded maps).  They are a good unit and work well.  $130 is a great price. 

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20 minutes ago, Red90 said:

It was discontinued, because there is a newer model, the 32X, that came out in June this year.  There is very little different with the new model (more memory and preloaded maps).  They are a good unit and work well.  $130 is a great price. 

 

Thank you. I did order a 64GB micro sd card, case and screen protector. So the sd card should help with the memory. I see the 32x on Amazon for $299

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1 hour ago, SkellyCA said:

Are there any known issues with the Garmin etrex 30x?

 

Not very many. You can see a very short list at GPSrChive.com > eTrex x0x > Common Issues

 

1 hour ago, SkellyCA said:

I ask because I just bought one at Costco for $130. I came home and looked it up on the Garmin site. It's been discontinued, anyone know why?

 

As others already eluded to, there is a newer eTrex x2x version available now, with very few updates or improvements, IMHO.

 

1 hour ago, SkellyCA said:

On the Garmin site it's listed at $299, On Amazon I saw them for $199. Then Costco(in store) $130.

 

That is an exceptionally good price for that model!

 

1 hour ago, SkellyCA said:

I had been using an old Magellan Triton 400. The unit itself works fine but without software updates, it no longer works like it used to. For example, connecting to the geocaching site to download cache files. I've been having to have the pocket quirries emailed to me, then putting the into the software. It would only get worse from there. So it was time for something new and I had been looking for a few months but budget is tight. So I went to Costco today for other stuff today and saw these, so I grabbed one(well the cardboard thing, lol). The eTrex 30x seems better than what I had, though I'm just setting it up and playing with it. I do know that Costco has a good return policy, sonot to worried.

 

Any tips, trick or other advice, suggestions?

 

Take some time to get used to how that unit functions, read about it here and at GPSrChive, or anywhere else google sends you!

 

The eTrex is not Garmins top of the line series, bit that unit is a top of the line eTrex!

 

Enjoy!

 

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I've been using one for almost exactly a year now (it was on such a good offer back then I upgraded from a perfectly decent etrex20) .

 

The only issue I've had is the tiny sliding/pivoting metal memory card door, which somehow got itself loose and fell out when I was changing AA cells in the field ... as I've only ever opened the memory card door once ( to install a card with osm maps on when I got the device) the only way I can imagine this happened is if some time earlier I dropped the device when no cells were in place, jarring the memory card door  at just the right angle to partially open by itself, then next time I opened the back to change the cells the flap was at a position to finish opening and gravity did the rest ...

 

I got it back in, but it doesn't hold the card tight against the contacts any more , so there is a tiny square of paper folded up and between the AAs and the metal holder now to keep it snug, without that my maps (which I have on that card ) are unavailable, but the device works fine otherwise. So I'll be very careful in the future with how I treat that tiny metal door !

 

Apart from that small mechanical problem, I've had no issues , it's quietly steered me to around 1000 geocaches.

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Posted (edited)

I am having some (I am not sure!) issues with eTrex 30x, please see here, if you buy it then you too test it.

 

 

 

Edited by dgnzcn

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14 hours ago, SkellyCA said:

 

Thank you. I did order a 64GB micro sd card, case and screen protector. So the sd card should help with the memory. I see the 32x on Amazon for $299

 

You don't really need any extra memory.  They have lots stock.  It is only needed if you are planning on putting on a lot of different maps all of them covering  continent or a lot of Birdseye.

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16 hours ago, SkellyCA said:

 

Thank you. I did order a 64GB micro sd card, case and screen protector. So the sd card should help with the memory. I see the 32x on Amazon for $299

 

2 hours ago, Red90 said:

 

You don't really need any extra memory.  They have lots stock.  It is only needed if you are planning on putting on a lot of different maps all of them covering  continent or a lot of Birdseye.

 

I would point out that it has become common practice for many Garmin users to load all of their data to the installed microSD card instead of to the GPSr internal memory primarily so that if there is an issue with any of the data loaded that prevents proper operation of the GPSr,  the microSD card can be removed and GPSr function restored while in the field, where as when all data is loaded to the GPSr, you can be stuck with a paper weight while in the field.

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10 hours ago, hal-an-tow said:

I've been using one for almost exactly a year now (it was on such a good offer back then I upgraded from a perfectly decent etrex20) .

 

The only issue I've had is the tiny sliding/pivoting metal memory card door, which somehow got itself loose and fell out when I was changing AA cells in the field ... as I've only ever opened the memory card door once ( to install a card with osm maps on when I got the device) the only way I can imagine this happened is if some time earlier I dropped the device when no cells were in place, jarring the memory card door  at just the right angle to partially open by itself, then next time I opened the back to change the cells the flap was at a position to finish opening and gravity did the rest ...

 

I got it back in, but it doesn't hold the card tight against the contacts any more , so there is a tiny square of paper folded up and between the AAs and the metal holder now to keep it snug, without that my maps (which I have on that card ) are unavailable, but the device works fine otherwise. So I'll be very careful in the future with how I treat that tiny metal door !

 

Apart from that small mechanical problem, I've had no issues , it's quietly steered me to around 1000 geocaches.

My wife actually lost that little door from her Etrex 20, no idea how. I searched ebay and found I could buy a dozen for pennies and they were the correct fit!

I've been through about six Etrexs mainly due to losing three then finding one of the lost ones after buying a replacement. I've never had an operational problem with any except for wearing out a toggle on one and a couple of micro switches. I was able to buy replacement parts off a seller in Russia of all places. ATM I have four. One E20 with a broken microswitch (the main menu button), one E20 still good, one E20x (bought that one to replace one I lost then found) I have yet to fix. My original 10 I bought 7 years ago, still working.  Like I said, never had an operational (firmware) issue with any.  I need to find a way to stop losing them.

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So I put the sd card in, but I don't see a menu that tells me how much memory I have? Is there a way to tell if it's actually working?

 

 

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7 minutes ago, SkellyCA said:

So I put the sd card in, but I don't see a menu that tells me how much memory I have? Is there a way to tell if it's actually working?

 

 

 

There is no such menu or display on the GPSr. You will have to connect to a PC to see how much memory is available.

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21 hours ago, Atlas Cached said:

 

There is no such menu or display on the GPSr. You will have to connect to a PC to see how much memory is available.

 

Thank you.

 

I'm glad I checked. It didn't register. So took it out and started over but the little door fell off. So had to put that back in, put the sd card in and it registered as a separate usb drive.

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Posted (edited)
51 minutes ago, SkellyCA said:

 

Thank you.

 

I'm glad I checked. It didn't register. So took it out and started over but the little door fell off. So had to put that back in, put the sd card in and it registered as a separate usb drive.

 

Excellent!

 

The microSD retaining 'door' is fragile, many people report them coming loose, so you just have to be extra careful with them. Some users even report them coming loose (sliding open) while in use, so once you have the microSD card in it that you want to keep in it, you can apply a small strip of thin tape (scotch or electrical) across the retainer to help keep it retained! 8^)

 

There are some custom icons available for the eTrex and eTrex microSD card available at GPSrChive > eTrex > eTrex x0x > Über User > Custom Icons.

 

Edited by Atlas Cached

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Posted (edited)

I found that maps stored on the SD card are significantly slower to update while hiking, the map tiles don't update as quickly as they do when the map is on internal memory. The difference was so big that I eventually stopped using the SD card for map storage.

 

As an indication; I would walk a trail and cross a junction. The map tile would update after I passed the junction. With the same map on the internal memory, the tiles update far quicker.

 

I am using a 32 Gb class 10 Samsung card.

 

Other than this though, the device is really good. I love the screen especially, one of the best I have used over the years! Great deal.

Edited by stefanwilkens

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After coming loose a few times, especially when changing batteries, I put a small piece of adhesive tape on the SD card door to keep it in place. Doesn’t come loose anymore.

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17 hours ago, SkellyCA said:

So took it out and started over but the little door fell off. So had to put that back in, put the sd card in and it registered as a separate usb drive.

I had the SD card fall out once in the field while changing batteries. Hard to find in the leaves on the forest floor.  After that, I secured it with a small square of electrical tape.

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They just need to build them like the Colorado again.

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That was a great deal.

 

All I see now is the eTrex 20x for $299.

 

The original eTrex 20 was my first GPS unit.

Still have it and use it occasionally due to its compact size. 

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4 hours ago, BlackRose67 said:

That was a great deal.

 

All I see now is the eTrex 20x for $299.

 

The original eTrex 20 was my first GPS unit.

Still have it and use it occasionally due to its compact size. 

Just picked up a 64st at Bass Pro for $249.97 (CDN). Sale runs 'till Aug. 25.

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I just recently saw the same deal on the eTrex 30x at Costco ($130) and bought my first GPSr!  Although I've found and hidden caches with my Android (Google Pixel) I've been putting that away and learning to use the eTrex to navigate.  It seems to be just as accurate and I've learned enough to find and log three caches with the eTrex and GSAK!  That may not seem like much, but it was a big step forward along the learning curve for me!

 

This thread has been helpful as I learn the ins and outs and maneuvering through the menus to get the information I need. 

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CAVinoGal - Good for you! Certainly, as you have already noticed, using the GPSr is not the same as using your smartphone, but many of us find them to be preferable, even with the 'learning curves' involved.

 

I hope you do continue to enjoy your new GPSr for many more geocaches to come (and so much more)!

 

Remember to check GPSrChive > eTrex > eTrex x0x for additional information about your new GPSr!

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On 10/13/2019 at 8:13 AM, Atlas Cached said:

Certainly, as you have already noticed, using the GPSr is not the same as using your smartphone, but many of us find them to be preferable, even with the 'learning curves' involved.

Not the same, for sure.  I just downloaded some new maps and see an improvement in my experience already - it's going to be nice having an alternative if we are without cell signal, and having options when we travel, especially internationally.  A European river cruise may be in our future; and a GPSr may be preferable to data costs on the smartphone!

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4 hours ago, CAVinoGal said:

A European river cruise may be in our future; and a GPSr may be preferable to data costs on the smartphone!

Keep in mind that any smartphone can be made to work like a GPS. Geocaches and maps can be downloaded and the phone put into airplane mode so that data is not being used. In both cases, you must plan ahead, but in the case of the GPS, you must plan further ahead and load everything prior to your trip. At least with a phone, you can find a wifi hotspot to create a quick PQ or two for your local area, run it, and download it to your phone. And with a river cruise, you may even have wifi on the boat.

That said, I still believe that the GPS still has a place and prefer using it to my phone. But my phone usage for geocaching is increasing.

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I am on my second eTrex30. It was cheaper than the eTrex30x and I wasn't sure it would do anything more for me than an eTrex30, which I am happy with, so I bought the cheaper. I do need a chip in it though to load maps from around the world for travelling.

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10 hours ago, Goldenwattle said:

I do need a chip in it though to load maps from around the world for travelling.

 

The eTrex 30x came with 4GB internal memory; I've loaded less than 1000 caches locally so far, and one new mapset for California, Oregon, and Washington states.  I have 2.6GB available memory left.  The unit will accept up to a 64GB microSD, and I will likely be adding some, if not the 64 GB, then 16 or 32 GB will be sufficient for now, I think.  I can always get a bigger microSD, and when that day comes I may have moved on to another GPSr anyway!

11 hours ago, Mineral2 said:

Keep in mind that any smartphone can be made to work like a GPS. Geocaches and maps can be downloaded and the phone put into airplane mode so that data is not being used. In both cases, you must plan ahead, but in the case of the GPS, you must plan further ahead and load everything prior to your trip. At least with a phone, you can find a wifi hotspot to create a quick PQ or two for your local area, run it, and download it to your phone. And with a river cruise, you may even have wifi on the boat.

Valid points - we did some caching in Mexico while on a cruise a year or so ago - preloaded the caches in the ports before we left home, downloaded for off line use, had the phone in airplane mode, and couldn't access the caches for some reason. I ended up texting our son who had been in the same port a week before with his family, and he guided us to the caches ... and we were able to take photos for an EC at low and high tide and answer the questions later when we had internet.

 

I think I will enjoy having the GPSr as a back up/alternate way of navigating.  And I like playing with new toys!

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Just now, CAVinoGal said:

The eTrex 30x came with 4GB internal memory; I've loaded less than 1000 caches locally so far, and one new mapset for California, Oregon, and Washington states.  I have 2.6GB available memory left.  The unit will accept up to a 64GB microSD, and I will likely be adding some, if not the 64 GB, then 16 or 32 GB will be sufficient for now, I think.  I can always get a bigger microSD, and when that day comes I may have moved on to another GPSr anyway!

I have loaded the whole of Australia, large parts of the south Pacific and parts of Asia. Plus some of American and Canada and several countries in Europe. I don't think they would fit without a chip.

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On 10/15/2019 at 11:17 PM, Goldenwattle said:

I am on my second eTrex30. It was cheaper than the eTrex30x and I wasn't sure it would do anything more for me than an eTrex30, which I am happy with, so I bought the cheaper. I do need a chip in it though to load maps from around the world for travelling.

 

The 30x has a much higher resolution screen.

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On 10/16/2019 at 3:22 PM, Goldenwattle said:

I have loaded the whole of Australia, large parts of the south Pacific and parts of Asia. Plus some of American and Canada and several countries in Europe. I don't think they would fit without a chip.

 

Unfortunately, the eTrex 30, which you state you have loaded all those maps to via microSD card can only index 3000 map segments, and I am very doubtful all the maps you mention are under that maximum number. I would expect the total map segments for all those maps to be much greater, probably two or three time the limit for that GPSr.

 

Install and run JaVaWa Device Manager and let it analyze your GPSr as is, and it will indicate the total number of map segments currently loaded to the device and microSD card. I would be curios to find out how many segments in all those maps.

 

Just because you can fit them all on the microSD card does not mean you can use them on the device, I suspect you may have many 'blank' spots without map coverage.

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2 hours ago, Red90 said:

 

The 30x has a much higher resolution screen.

 

LOL, it does... BUT: How do you determine which looks better, a 4K TV or a 720p TV, looking through a keyhole?

 

 

Edited by Atlas Cached

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I'm not sure why you're looking through a keyhole. No matter the screen size, more pixels equals clearer image. 

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