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Pda With Gps?


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I currently use a Magellan SportTrak Pro and a Palm Tungsten E PDA for my caching. Here's my dilemma:

 

1. Having 2 separate gadgets is cumbersome.

2. I often cache alone in places I am not familiar with. When driving, it would be helpful to have something telling me where to turn instead of me pullling over constantly to check my maps, GPS, etc.

3. I like the idea of having a larger, real time map available than what is possible on the screen of my Magellan.

 

Should I get a PDA with a GPS? I would go with Mapopolis with GPS receiver, but then I still have to get a new PDA because it doesn't support the Tungsten E.

 

Any suggestions?

 

Thanks!

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I wouldn't, especially since you already have both. A hand held dedicated GPS is much more rugged (and weather proof) than a PDA. My PPC would never survive what my GPS has been through in the past year and a half. To keep things organized, I have a holster for the GPS and a belt pack for PDA, notebook, pens, batteries, compass, etc. The really serious people I've seen keep their GPS on a lanyard around the neck.

Edited by blindleader
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There is one GPS you can use with your crippled T|E. Kirrio sells a GPS that has USB master circuitry and will work with a T|E. It isn't cheap, but it reportedly does work. I think it's bundled with mapping software for the UK, which may not be what you want. There may be a source for the GPS and US software, but I haven't really searched. Try Google.

 

If you do get a new Palm, I recommend the T3. The T5 has a different connector, and I haven't seen any cables that will connect to it. The Zire 72 has no universal connector, like the T|E.

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There is one GPS you can use with your crippled T|E.  Kirrio sells a GPS that has USB master circuitry and will work with a T|E.

They also sell a USB-to-serial adapter for use with those devices. Know where to find one on this side of the pond, or a European vendor that'll ship any of those over here?

 

I just found out about those today, as someone with the T|E + GPS bundle was trying to use it with CacheNav. I'm trying to get some questions answered by Kirrio about their hardware, but I have my suspicions... if I'm right, I may be able to get it (and possibly other weird hardware in the future) working with Cache(Mate/Nav) with little trouble.

Edited by Maeglin
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If you do get a new Palm, I recommend the T3. The T5 has a different connector, and I haven't seen any cables that will connect to it. The Zire 72 has no universal connector, like the T|E.

What do you mean, cables won't connect to it? I just bought a new T5 when Fry's had their Thanksgiving sale (saved $51). I can use Cachmate with it , right? It Hotsyncs just fine with my HP laptop.

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What do you mean, cables won't connect to it?  I just bought a new T5 when Fry's had their Thanksgiving sale (saved $51).  I can use Cachmate with it , right?  It Hotsyncs just fine with my HP laptop.

No GPS-specific cables.

 

If you can find a serial Hotsync cable for it then, of course, you can fake it.

Edited by Maeglin
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The T5's connector is different from the Palm Universal connector, and the cables sold to connect Palms to a GPS won't work. If you buy another hotsync cable for it, you can cut and modify it to connect to your GPS, but that's the only way I know of. Perhaps some vendors will begin to sell cables for it someday, but not yet.

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Many of the better PDAs can be connected to a GPSr and used for doing navigation. So you can use the PDA-GPSr combo in the car and then use the GPSr in the woods. The problem with a PDA for a GPSr is the typical PDA only last for a few hours, 4 to 6 hours. Also there is the durability issue. Though I got a battery for my PDA that will last for 17 hours, but still when I carry it I carry it in a protective case not in my hand like my GPSr while walking. There is a lot of mapping software that will do routing as well. A good starting point is the AXIMSITE.com as they will have a lot of info that can be used with any PDA-GPSr.

cheers

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Not sure how to start a new topic, so thought I would clip on my question to your thread.

 

Can anyone help me? I have a garmin gps unit, so I don't want to use my t3 as a gps, but I have a set of maps for NZ (which is not very common on the gps circuit!) which are *img files. 6mb covers the whole country with very good street detail.

 

They are not garmin maps, as the Garmin Mapsource pc software says there are no maps on my gps when I upload the waypoints etc. and I cant import them into the Mapsource software from my pc directory.

 

I want to try to run them on my t3 just for the convienience of having detailed street maps in my pocket, but I don't know what program I can use to view the *img files?

 

If anyone can help, I would be most grateful.

Garth

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When you mix the two you compromise on both. A friend of mine just bought the Navman PiN with integrated GPS and Pocket PC. Its not very effective when it comes to GPS tasks. For example everytime he tries to use it in the car the womans voice says "SIGNAL TOO LOW". Also, when its time to look something up about the cache and then go back to searching there is about 30 seconds of frantic stylus taps to get from one place in the unit to another. Seems like such a pain in the a**. Although with minimal searching, this particular item (www.outpost.com ITEM# 3693495) might not be so bad because it has the quad-helix antenna instead of the patch antenna which offers (USUALLY!) superior reception.

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I currently use a Magellan SportTrak Pro and a Palm Tungsten E PDA for my caching. Here's my dilemma:

I also use a GPSr and a PDA when caching.

 

1. Having 2 separate gadgets is cumbersome.

Yep, but hanging the GPSr from a lanyard around your neck helps a lot.

 

2. I often cache alone in places I am not familiar with. When driving, it would be helpful to have something telling me where to turn instead of me pullling over constantly to check my maps, GPS, etc.

3. I like the idea of having a larger, real time map available than what is possible on the screen of my Magellan.

 

I recently upgraded from my mapping Garmin III+ to an autorouting Garmin 76C. The screen sizes are identical but the 76C has colour. I was considering a PDA-based GPSr because I wanted a larger screen, but decided to go with a standalone GPS (I change PDAs more often that GPSrs). I surmised correctly that the autorouting feature made a larger map screen much less of a necessity because the main reason I wanted a larger map was to figure out how to get somewhere. Zooming in/out on a small screen is good enough to show me where I was and where I had to go. I just wanted the large screen to figure out how to get there, and the autorouting took care of that, anyway.

 

So after 2 weeks with my autorouting GPSr, I have no regrets about not buying a PDA GPSr.

 

Besides, I sometimes search for caches in bad weather so the last thing I'd want to do is leave my PDA exposed to the elements while it's trying to lock onto signals. Oh, one other consideration: I've used a LOT of PDAs and am still waiting for a colour screen that is easily readable in bright sunlight and twilight conditions. My T3 has one of the best screens on the PDA market but the colour screen on my 76C is good over a wide range of conditions and is very easy to read in direct sunlight (where as the T3's screen is too dark and virtually unreadable).

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I am a Tungsten|E owner as well. Bought it about 3 months before the Geocaching bug bit me.

 

I have a Foretrex 101 as my GPS, and it works just fine alone in the car. I use the wrist strap on my rear-view mirror.

 

Another option might be to hook your GPS to your laptop (if you have one) for in-car nav then un-plug the GPS to hunt the cache. You can get power inverters to run your laptop.

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I have a navman GPS receiver for my Palm IIIxe. It has been in the attic because I hated the streets application that came with it. What I would like to know is if anyone has had any luck in finding an application that is more suitable for GeoCaching that runs on the Palm that can control the Navman GPS?

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SupplyNet is comming out with a cable for the T5 to the Delorme Earthmate USB at the end of next month. I actually had a cable like this and used the earthmate with my IPaq for a while. It worked fairly well, but then I accidently plugged the wrong power supply into the cable and fried my earthmate. It might be a solution if you don't want to change PDAs.
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Can anyone help me? I have a garmin gps unit, so I don't want to use my t3 as a gps, but I have a set of maps for NZ (which is not very common on the gps circuit!) which are *img files. 6mb covers the whole country with very good street detail.

 

They are not garmin maps, as the Garmin Mapsource pc software says there are no maps on my gps when I upload the waypoints etc. and I cant import them into the Mapsource software from my pc directory.

 

I want to try to run them on my t3 just for the convienience of having detailed street maps in my pocket, but I don't know what program I can use to view the *img files?

 

If anyone can help, I would be most grateful.

Garth, where did u get these maps from?? If they are home-made, they might be uploadable to your Garmin but not through Mapsource (because a) there is no associated .tdb file or :D there is, but you never altered the registry to tell Mapsource about your NZ .img file(s)).

 

If they are, in fact, Garmin-compatible files, Google for "sendmap.exe" and try using that to upload the .img file(s) to your Garmin.

 

I made a map using GPSMapedit and cGPSMapper and successfully uploaded it to my 76C using Sendmap. The resulting output was a single .img file. I also used cGPSMapper to build a .tdb file so I could load it into Mapsource. My only problem right now is that I can't coerce Mapsource to upload that custom map into the GPS. I still have to use Sendmap.

 

GeoBC

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I also have the Tungsten E and I am very much interested in if any cables are available to connect to SporTrak Pro. As of now I use my GPS and Laptop for real time navigation running DeLorme Street Atlas 2005. I use Cachemate in the PDA but would love to hook up to GPS if possible.

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No, there is no way to connect a T|E to anything. It's a USB slave, and can only talk to a USB master, such as a PC. No PDA with only a USB port can talk to any other device, unless it has bluetooth, or through the IRDA. No GPSrs that I'm aware of use IR, but Kirrio has a USB master GPS for sale in Europe. It's not cheap, though.

 

If this isn't in the FAQs, it should be.

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No, there is no way to connect a T|E to anything. It's a USB slave, and can only talk to a USB master, such as a PC. No PDA with only a USB port can talk to any other device, unless it has bluetooth, or through the IRDA. No GPSrs that I'm aware of use IR, but Kirrio has a USB master GPS for sale in Europe. It's not cheap, though.

 

If this isn't in the FAQs, it should be.

Really? Not even this? USB to Serial Converter

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If this isn't in the FAQs, it should be.

Really? Not even this? USB to Serial Converter

From what I've read, there is a great variety of USB<->serial converters. Some work, some don't. If you buy one, make sure you can return it if it doesn't work with your particular combination.

 

Also, if you want to do NMEA output with your GPS, I don't know if they can do it without a built-in serial port. The ones with USB might only be able to do it when using a two-way protocol which your external software won't have.

 

GeoBC

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My thoughts are to go with an upgraded GPSr with routing over the upgraded PDA. As stated above the GPS unit will generally be much sturdier meaning a loss of a single item won't necessarily be catastrophic. I have also tried the laptop route but found it too cumbersome.

 

I've used a Garmin GPS V for over three years and put 45K miles on it both geocaching and just finding my way around. It is certainly nice to not have to fumble around with maps. While it's not perfect, the routing works pretty well and I'll frequently use it's best guess on the closest approach rather than reading the cache page. I recently upgraded PDAs going from an old Palm Pilot to a Palm Vx (bought on ebay) in order to get some extra memory. I'm not a power PDA user so the basic calendar, address, etc. functions are fine for me.

 

As far as juggling gadgets, I usually just carry the GPSr and only pull PDA out of my small pack (which also contains batteries, cell phone (w/ camera), trade items and any other necessities) if absolutely necessary. I don't like the around the neck option since it seems to be begging to get snagged on every passing twig.

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No, especially not with a USB-Serial converter. The T|E has no serial port. It is a USB slave, and cannot talk to another USB slave, nor to any serial device. The only device a T|E can communicate with through the mini-USB port is a desktop computer, or some other USB master device. The only one I know of is the Kirrio GPS, but AFAICT it isn't sold in the US at all.

 

Edit: I have a USB-serial adapter for using my Garmin with my laptop, and it works for that - PCs know about serial ports, even if there is no physical port. It won't work with a PDA, though.

Edited by NightPilot
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