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Guest echo2000

GPS Decisions!

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Guest echo2000

Hi there,

 

New to this board and geocaching in general. From what I've been reading it sounds like something I'm gonna totally get engrossed with!

 

I've been trying to research GPS units and wanted to see what others think.

 

I think I've narrowed it to the Garmin Vista, Venture or Legend. Can anyone recommend one over the rest or give me the scoop on their field performances?

 

Is the Vistas 24M of RAM overkill?

Is the Venture's World City map too chi-chi for geocaching needs?

 

Please help! Can't wait to get started!

 

Thanks in advance.

 

E2

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Guest k2dave

I have the III+ with it's scimpy 1.4 mb mem. I can basically load all of Suffolk County (I noticed you were from LI - me too) into it (topo usa).

With 24 m I can load almost the entire state of NY including many areas that overlap w/ NJ, VT, MA, CT, PA. Overkill maybe a little but it would be nice not to have to load maps everytime I'm going to another site. Plus newer more accurate maps that require more mem are a natural evolution.

 

That's my take on the mem issue - hopefully someone can comment on the units.

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Guest echo2000

Thanks for the welcome.

 

I think I may go Legend. Anyone else have differing opnions? icon_smile.gif

 

E2

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Guest echo2000

Thanks for the welcome.

 

I think I may go Legend. Anyone else have differing opnions? icon_smile.gif

 

E2

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Guest HomeChicken

I have the legend and living in southern California I downloaded using the metroguide about 1/3 of the freeways down here. We have a hell of alot of streets here. I could only get one map to load with the 8 mb. I was a little upset at first but realized it's not all the time I go out side the area I downloaded + that is alot of streets and highways. Some states you could download the whole state. If I had the extra money I would have gotten the 24 mb vista. I'm happy with what I paid for the legend because anymore money spent would of made me look crazy to the wife and friends! It might be over kill

 

------------------

Bought a eTrex Legend on 7/24/01

I was part of or placed these Caches

Sun rising over Mt.Rubidoux

Urban Jungle

Rising sun over Chicken Coop

Need to rate your own Cache?

Geocache Rating System

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Guest gstrong1

Welcome echo2000. If you've narrowed it down to a choice between these 3 units,I would for sure try to spend the extra bucks on the Vista.As k2dave has said,I've got most of NY loaded into mine & it's nice to not have to screw around loading new maps if you happen to be heading on a trip out of your immediate area.I'm in Western NY and headed over to the Adirondacks for vacation last week, & all I had to do was load in some waypoints for places I wanted to check out & caches I wanted to hunt.I've had the topo maps loaded in there since I got the Vista about 4 months ago, and have not had to load any since.If the extra cash is not a problem, thats the way I'd go.

 

------------------

Gary "Gimpy" Strong

Rochester,NY

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Guest echo2000

Gstrong, money is *always* a problem. Heheh.

 

Actually, I also mountain bike (try not to hold it against me if you've had bad run ins with my ilk) so spending seemingly ludicrous amounts on "hobby gear" is not a foreign concept to me. Nor is it anything new to my GF, much to her chagrin.

 

I think I may go Vista after all. The 24M memory is very appealling and seems to be the only major difference between the three models I looked at (besides price, of course). I mean, what's the deal with Venture's "Points of Interest"? Is it like a computerized Fodors where it's got "Uncle Elmo's Rattlesnake Farm" and other regional wonders listed?

 

Now if our Commander-In-Chief would just hurry up with those tax rebates, my decision-making process would be so much simpler! Heheh.

 

Thanks again for the welcome and the advice.

 

E2

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Guest echo2000

quote:
Originally posted by haiwatta:

For comparison, look at this link:

http://www2.garmin.com/outdoor/compare.jsp

 

Here are the differences neatly organized.

 

Arjen.


 

Thanks, Arjen.

 

I've been looking at that site for a few days. I guess I'm wondering if the Venture's WorldWide City Map and Points of Interest is worthwhile or just bonus fluff for geocaching. The lure of the Vista's 24M seems to be tipping the scales in its favor.

 

Thanks again.

 

E2

 

[This message has been edited by echo2000 (edited 27 August 2001).]

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Guest Cucumber Jones

quote:
Now if our Commander-In-Chief would just hurry up with those tax rebates, my decision-making process would be so much simpler! Heheh.

 

Ah!!! It just arrived today! (An insult, considering what I already had to pay those bloodsucking freaks) but now I can rationalize upgrading! yay!! Oh, I wish I could be single forever. icon_wink.gif

 

Who am I kidding -- keep spending my money on these kinda things and I'll dadgum near guarantee it!! icon_biggrin.gif

 

Cuke

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Guest Cucumber Jones

quote:
Now if our Commander-In-Chief would just hurry up with those tax rebates, my decision-making process would be so much simpler! Heheh.

 

Ah!!! It just arrived today! (An insult, considering what I already had to pay those bloodsucking freaks) but now I can rationalize upgrading! yay!! Oh, I wish I could be single forever. icon_wink.gif

 

Who am I kidding -- keep spending my money on these kinda things and I'll dadgum near guarantee it!! icon_biggrin.gif

 

Cuke

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Guest echo2000

arrived today! (An insult, considering what I already had to pay those bloodsucking freaks) but now I can rationalize upgrading! yay!! Oh, I wish I could be single forever. icon_wink.gif

 

Who am I kidding -- keep spending my money on these kinda things and I'll dadgum near guarantee it!! icon_biggrin.gif

 

Cuke


 

As long as you allot enough to distract the GF with Godivas and occasional baubles I think it'll be OK. icon_wink.gif

 

Mine came today too. Still, it's hard to justify the $300 Vista. Any ideas where the cheapest ones may be?

 

E2

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Guest echo2000

arrived today! (An insult, considering what I already had to pay those bloodsucking freaks) but now I can rationalize upgrading! yay!! Oh, I wish I could be single forever. icon_wink.gif

 

Who am I kidding -- keep spending my money on these kinda things and I'll dadgum near guarantee it!! icon_biggrin.gif

 

Cuke


 

As long as you allot enough to distract the GF with Godivas and occasional baubles I think it'll be OK. icon_wink.gif

 

Mine came today too. Still, it's hard to justify the $300 Vista. Any ideas where the cheapest ones may be?

 

E2

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Guest leemannn

Check out thje magellans including the

meridians they might be better.Lee icon_biggrin.gif

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Guest leemannn

Check out thje magellans including the

meridians they might be better.Lee icon_biggrin.gif

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Guest jbwcpa

quote:
Originally posted by echo2000:

...Still, it's hard to justify the $300 Vista. Any ideas where the cheapest ones may be?

 

E2

 


VISTA PRICES

Ebay around $285. GPS City $310. The GPS Store $349. Amazon.com $315. Etronics $295

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Guest steveor

quote:
Originally posted by echo2000:

I mean, what's the deal with Venture's "Points of Interest"? Is it like a computerized Fodors where it's got "Uncle Elmo's Rattlesnake Farm" and other regional wonders listed?


 

Computerized Fodors? I wish! Garmin advertises a points of interest CD that they will sell for what I assume would be an obscene amount. I purchased my Venture because I wanted a basic eTrex with WAAS and the PC cable. It has cities in the database which would be neat if I can use it the next time I fly anywhere. Otherwise it is a hyped basic eTrex in my opinion. Www.advancedgps.com had the best price and free shipping (FYI Vista-$294.95). Ordered on Sunday-received on Wednesday.

 

Good Luck!

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Guest echo2000

Wow!

 

Thanks for all the replies! It's great to know you guys are a very supportive community.

 

I think I've settled on the Vista and will either get it from Amazon (304.99 inculding S&H PLUS some of that goes to our cause, doesn't it?) or I may try to snipe it on Ebay (Buy t now feature had one for $288).

 

I tried searching for a price on pricegrabber.com and the best they could come up with was $328 including S&H.

 

E2

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Guest wasmith

Dang, somebody really needs to leave a cache at "Uncle Elmo's Rattlesnake Farm" ... I thought about leaving one at "Bubba's Alligator Farm" in SW florida.

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Guest DaveA

I do not recommend Garmin Etrex units for geocaching. The Vista and others are legendary for displaying the "No Satellites found" message when under tree cover. They are also not waterproof in a hard rain (but can be dunked a few inches under the water) contrary to what the IPX7 rating would have you believe. You can check the GPS news groups to see complaints of Vista owners with the lack of durability and performance with these units.

 

The other consideration is that the Vista's compass is only accurate to +/- 5 degrees which makes it about as accurate as a $2 Wal-Mart compass. It reduces battery life by 40% over the other Etrex units.

 

If you want a durable unit with all the memory you would ever need, wait a month for the Magellan Meridian's to hit the stores. $266.00 for the Meridian Gold which is trully waterproof, drop proof and retains Satellite lock under dense overhead cover.

 

The unit has a 16mb basemap and you choose whatever amount of memory you want for uploading maps via memory cards. If the basemap isn't important to you get the base Meridian for around $200.00

 

For the price of an Etrex Vista that looses lock under cover you could get a Magellan Meridian with a 64mb memory card or the 32mb memory card with the map software.

 

Just say no to wimpy patch antennas!

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Guest echo2000

Wow!

 

I didn't think the Vista had a bad rep! Can you point me to the newsgroup address? I'd like to check this out.

 

One problem is, I've set myself mentally for this thing and don't know if I have enough willpower to back down and wai for another unit. Know what I mean?

 

Anyway, other Vista owners having probs?

 

I'll try a separate post regarding this as well.

 

Thanks for the "heads up", DaveA

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Guest bunkerdave

Just my own opinion:

 

I have had good experience with my Magellan MAP330, as have many of those I know who use one of their own. I am not sure why, but the reception of the signal seems to be better with the antenna configuration. I am not sure if the Meridian line will be better or worse, but the MAP330 does everything, plus more, that you need for geocaching, and runs $250 these days, then you can get a rebate, so you are just over $200. I believe that includes a very detailed map software package, and the suction cup cradle for your car, along with the data/power cable. If you go that direction, be sure to get the 330*X* package.

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Guest BX Tale

I don't know, for $300 wouldn't the GPSmap 76 be a better deal? I am in the market for an upgrade to my Venure. I've been eyeing(B-day gift) a Gpsmap 76 for a while now.

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Guest gstrong1

A better deal than the Vista? Yes.

 

------------------

Gary "Gimpy" Strong

Rochester,NY

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Guest Artful Dodger

I've had the GPSMAP 76 for a few months now. Totally satisfied! This is one neat unit - highly recommended.

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Guest prv8eye
Originally posted by DaveA:

the Meridian Gold which is trully waterproof, drop proof and retains Satellite lock under dense overhead cover.

[/quote

 

Drop proof?

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Guest prv8eye

quote:
Originally posted by echo2000:

Hi there,

I think I've narrowed it to the Garmin Vista, Venture or Legend. Can anyone recommend one over the rest or give me the scoop on their field performances?

E2


 

I had narrowed my search to the Vista but, after reading numerous complaints on these forums, started leaning towards the Legend.

However, after reading about the better tracking of the Magellan 330 I was glad I hadn't bought either. The fact that the 330 wasn't waterproof made me hesitant to buy one. Then the Magellan Meridian's came out and the Merridian Gold seems to be just what I'm looking for. Magellan's maps also seem to get better reviews.

Now my only problem is FINDING a Meridian to buy.

 

Gus Morrow

Oceanside, CA

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Guest exConn

quote:
Originally posted by DaveA:

I do not recommend Garmin Etrex units for geocaching. The Vista and others are legendary for displaying the "No Satellites found" message when under tree cover. They are also not waterproof in a hard rain...


 

I disagree. I took my Vista out last week on my mountain bike where it began to downpour for a good 30 minutes. The unit never blinked and performed flawlessly and no problems under tree cover.

 

quote:
Originally posted by DaveA:

It reduces battery life by 40% over the other Etrex units.


 

I agree. Battery life is not very good (always have extra batteries with this unit).

 

quote:
Originally posted by DaveA:

For the price of an Etrex Vista that looses lock under cover you could get a Magellan Meridian with a 64mb memory card or the 32mb memory card with the map software.


 

I agree and disagree. The Vista is fine in the woods. However, if you are *only* geocaching another unit with an external antenna is probably a better choice. Of course an external antenna will get you better reception. But is it *that* much better if you use the unit for other things as well.

 

echo2000 - You also take your unit mountain biking as I do. The Vista won for me because it has a smaller profile (do you really want an external antenna sticking out that snaps off when you dump your bike? rolleyes.gif ), has excellent memory for loading topos, altimeter (great when biking), AND still works great for geocaching. There will be small tradeoffs, but you'll just have to sort your priorities to help you chose the best unit for *you*. Truthfully, most modern units will work fine for geocaching in my opinion...

 

-exConn

 

[This message has been edited by exConn (edited 09 September 2001).]

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Guest ClayJar

quote:
Originally posted by DaveA:

the Meridian Gold which is trully waterproof, drop proof and retains Satellite lock under dense overhead cover.


I believe you mean "Drop Resistant" icon_smile.gif

(Since it comes out on October 15, I should be able to have one by the October 20 LAGG (Louisiana Area Geocachers' Gathering), right?)

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Guest ClayJar

quote:
Originally posted by DaveA:

the Meridian Gold which is trully waterproof, drop proof and retains Satellite lock under dense overhead cover.


I believe you mean "Drop Resistant" icon_smile.gif

(Since it comes out on October 15, I should be able to have one by the October 20 LAGG (Louisiana Area Geocachers' Gathering), right?)

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Guest echo2000

Exconn,

 

How's the trails in VA?

 

I figured the smaller profile may be better for endo's and such. Not that I ever endo or anything. icon_wink.gif

 

Anyway, I guess it's a sealed deal. Awaiting the arrival of my Garmin Vista. Any day now! Hoo-HOO!

 

~E2

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Guest echo2000

Exconn,

 

How's the trails in VA?

 

I figured the smaller profile may be better for endo's and such. Not that I ever endo or anything. icon_wink.gif

 

Anyway, I guess it's a sealed deal. Awaiting the arrival of my Garmin Vista. Any day now! Hoo-HOO!

 

~E2

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