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Guest upstatesc

In Heavy Tree Cover which is Best Hand Held?

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Guest upstatesc

I know this has been posted several times and I have read all the archives but I need an up to date opinion...

 

In heavy tree cover which is the best hand held GPS? FOr those of you who have Garmin and Magellan please tell me why you prefer one or the other. Also, the area where I will most use it is hilly.

 

I am leaning toward a Garmin at this point maybe the MAP76 or III+. Any experience with these?

 

I have heard nothing but praise for the III+ but the memory seems low to store maps. Is it?

 

ALso, considering the Magellan Map 330? It is cheaper and have read many good things about keeping good sat. signals in the woods. It soes have auto averaging too. Is this really something that you use much? But, Garmins seem to have more feature and maps.

 

So, just give me all the info you got (Pros, COns, etc.) Or any other untis I should consider.

 

As you can prob. tell I am new to the geocaching scene and any other info will br great.

 

Thanks in advance.

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Guest Quinnow

if you toss an external Garmin power antenna on it such as I have then it moves up the ranks to stand with the IIIPlus as far as reception goes. I have tested both units extensively along with the Vista. In order of reception I rank them IIIPlus, Map76 and then the Vista in that order.

Bob Bowter did a write-up on it within my site. this is in no means meant to push anyone there, its just that he has a better way of explaining it.

 

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Quinn Stone

Rochester, NY.14616

www.Navicache.com

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Guest upstatesc

How about the mapping on the IIIplus vs. Map76? Is there enought memory to use the IIIplus on the road (in a vehicle)?

 

quote:
Originally posted by Quinnow:

I own both the units you have mentioned (IIIPlus and the Map76) By far right out of the box the best would be the IIIPlus due to it's excellent reception and mapping. It also has 36 continuous hours of battery use compared to about 16 from the etrex line.

The map76 is a great all around unit but will fail you in tree cover such as many of the etrex line including the vista. But if you toss an external Garmin power antenna on it such as I have then it moves up the ranks to stand with the IIIPlus as far as reception goes. I have tested both units extensively along with the Vista. In order of reception I rank them IIIPlus, Map76 and then the Vista in that order.

Bob Bowter did a write-up on it within my site. this is in no means meant to push anyone there, its just that he has a better way of explaining it.

 


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Guest gstrong1

I agree with Quonnow 100% on his assessment of the III Plus & the MAP76.I also have these 2 units along with the eTrex Vista. For caching applications, up here in the northeast, the Vista is not in the same class as the III Plus & the MAP76.Heavy tree cover renders the Vista useless.I also have the external antenna for the MAP76 & though it's a fabulous unit, it still comes up a little short of the III Plus in very heavy tree cover.But that is the only area it comes up a little short.As far as mapping on the III Plus,I presently have Mapsource topo maps loaded, covering everything within a 25 mile radius of my home. This is an area roughly 52 miles north to south & about 45 miles east to west.This covers about all of the estimated 50 caches in my immediate area.As far as the use of the III Plus on the road,with the topo maps loaded,the preloaded base map covering major highways for the entire United States still remains functional.You won't be able to view any side streets, but all major highways & interstates are there.If you wanted to load maps from software such as the Garmin US Roads & Recreation showing secondary roads for a particular route or area, the III Plus would hold a larger area than the formentioned 25 mile radius as they require less detail.But either way, the US basemap remains constant.Hope this helps. icon_biggrin.gif.-Gimpy-

 

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Gary "Gimpy" Strong

Rochester,NY

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Guest gstrong1

I agree with Quonnow 100% on his assessment of the III Plus & the MAP76.I also have these 2 units along with the eTrex Vista. For caching applications, up here in the northeast, the Vista is not in the same class as the III Plus & the MAP76.Heavy tree cover renders the Vista useless.I also have the external antenna for the MAP76 & though it's a fabulous unit, it still comes up a little short of the III Plus in very heavy tree cover.But that is the only area it comes up a little short.As far as mapping on the III Plus,I presently have Mapsource topo maps loaded, covering everything within a 25 mile radius of my home. This is an area roughly 52 miles north to south & about 45 miles east to west.This covers about all of the estimated 50 caches in my immediate area.As far as the use of the III Plus on the road,with the topo maps loaded,the preloaded base map covering major highways for the entire United States still remains functional.You won't be able to view any side streets, but all major highways & interstates are there.If you wanted to load maps from software such as the Garmin US Roads & Recreation showing secondary roads for a particular route or area, the III Plus would hold a larger area than the formentioned 25 mile radius as they require less detail.But either way, the US basemap remains constant.Hope this helps. icon_biggrin.gif.-Gimpy-

 

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Gary "Gimpy" Strong

Rochester,NY

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Guest k2dave

I have only the 3+ so it is hard for me to compare but I rarely loose a lock in heavy trees. If I do it is because I put the unit in my front pocket.

 

The 3+ is getting a little old and you might think about the 5 (more mem + waas) or other simular formfactor - but I cant vouch for their abitity to hold a lock.

 

As for the mapping - 1.4m is stingy but enough. You can go to garmins web site and look up their mapping program. They will actually show you the 'quads' that you can load. I have the topo usa cd. Typically I can get 4-7 quads loaded - never less then 4 which is important because you might be going to the corner and require all 4.

 

You will probabally have to load your quads per trip.

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Guest Lisa1212

There is one thing to consider with the 3+, it has an external antenna and this is the reason why it probably works better under VERY dense tree cover. BUT the antenna can also be a pain as it makes the set more prone to breakage if dropped. I used to have a GPS45XL, which had an external antenna; back in those days (about 3 years ago) the performance of the non-external antenna units was so bad that they were virtually useless.

 

Now I own a GPS12 (a non external antenna) and its performance is excellent. It holds a lock under very dense tree cover and there is no way I would want to use a set with an external antenna because it makes it far too cumbersome.

 

So there you have it ? a trade off between performance you MAY never need and practicality.

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Guest mkral

Lisa may be right about a tradeoff, but I tell you from personal experience there is nothing more frustrating than getting to within 300 feet of a cache & losing a signal & not being able to pick it back up for anything. That happened to me the first (and after that experience, so far the only) time my girlfriend decided to go with my geocaching. I was using an etrex at the time & bought a III+ the next day.

 

The external III+ antennae seems pretty darn sturdy, so I don't think breakage would be a MAJOR concern. Anyways, those are just my thoughts.

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Guest adventuretom

Well, I have dropped my Garmin III a number of times with no damage at all to the antenna, so I don't think that's a major consideration. It is a sturdy antenna. I don't find it cumbersome either, if I want to put it in my pocket or bag, just fold the antenna over and drop it in. I also like the button layout and for me I like the way it sits in my hand better than the tiny etrex models. JMO.

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Guest gstrong1

I may be wrong, but from what I've seen,the biggest difference between the III Plus & the V is the road direction capabilities.If I need to know where I have to make a right or left turn, I print out a map.And as far as waas goes, I have the Vista & the MAP76, both with waas, & the III Plus is going to get me there just as fast, if not faster than those units.And for caching, if the cache owner did not have a waas capable unit when he recorded the posted co-ordinates, what good is waas going to do you?When I've gone caching with the III Plus along with either waas unit, the Plus has been more better at giving me my location.Seems the MAP76 takes a little time to settle in on the co-ordinates.After sitting for a few minutes the 76 settles in to the numbers the Plus already gave me.Especially under tree cover.The antenna I'm sure.When considering the choice between the III Plus & the V, I'd take a real good look at the difference between the features each has.There is a real considerable difference in price.Good luck. icon_biggrin.gif. Happy caching.

 

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Gary "Gimpy" Strong

Rochester,NY

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Guest gstrong1

I may be wrong, but from what I've seen,the biggest difference between the III Plus & the V is the road direction capabilities.If I need to know where I have to make a right or left turn, I print out a map.And as far as waas goes, I have the Vista & the MAP76, both with waas, & the III Plus is going to get me there just as fast, if not faster than those units.And for caching, if the cache owner did not have a waas capable unit when he recorded the posted co-ordinates, what good is waas going to do you?When I've gone caching with the III Plus along with either waas unit, the Plus has been more better at giving me my location.Seems the MAP76 takes a little time to settle in on the co-ordinates.After sitting for a few minutes the 76 settles in to the numbers the Plus already gave me.Especially under tree cover.The antenna I'm sure.When considering the choice between the III Plus & the V, I'd take a real good look at the difference between the features each has.There is a real considerable difference in price.Good luck. icon_biggrin.gif. Happy caching.

 

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Gary "Gimpy" Strong

Rochester,NY

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Guest rebobbitt

I have the III+ and the GPSmap76. When I first got the map76, it was way worse than the III+ in trees. I called Garmin and they said the map76 should be better, so I sent my unit in and they replaced it. The newer one worked much better, almost on par with the III+.

 

I like the mapping in the map76 MUCH better. The resolution of the screen is a lot higher and its a little wider, and I can fit the Metroguide in it, which I can't in the III+.

 

Rick

 

[This message has been edited by rebobbitt (edited 27 July 2001).]

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Guest bradrobb

I have a Lowrance Globalmap 100 and find it works well in heavy tree cover so far.

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