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Meridian Series Gps Units


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I have narrowed my list of choices down to the Magellan Meridian series GPS units, more specifically the Gold, Platinum, and Color models. Would appreciate input & opinions on any of the three. Will be used for both urban and rural geocaching, as well as in the car, so I want the ability to use a street mapping program as well as topo maps, to use the data card, and to use a cigarette lighter power cord. I understand the Color units often require use of the backlight feature when used outdoors. I'm all ready to go geocaching, just need to buy the right unit.

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I just ordered the Meridian Color traveler pack on Costco.com. It come with the unit, detail level street maps, auto adapter/computer cable, SD card and a automobile mount. After taking $100 off, the net cost is about $350. Better have a few AA's or some rechargables though, caust the backlight consumes power quickly. BTW, the sale ends soon.

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I use a Meridian Gold. I did not buy the Platinum because I already have a Suunto watch with a Barometer, Compass and Altimeter-so why spend money to duplicate what I have. I did not buy the Color Meridian because I do not see a real need for a color screen, sure color would be cool but I would rather spend money on Software.

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I don't want to discourage you but I had a bad experience with Magellan when I bought my first GPS a couple months back and it was probably an isolated issue. I bought one at Wally World and after leaving it on for a while to initialize it would work for a few minutes and then restart itself over and over. Took it back and replaced it for the last one they had in stock, it wouldn't even turn on. Tried several different sets of batteries from different packs of different brands. I am assuming that this might have been a bad batch or whatever. Ended up getting a Garmin instead because I was so frustrated!

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I've got the basic Meridian (discontinued) & it has some maps plus you can purchase SD cards for more space. I keep it in my work truck because of the maps plus when caching under tree cover it tends to lead you astray if it loses signal but you won't know that til it's too late. There was a better explanation for that but don't remember how it went.

Still, I'd purchase another given the features it has. Well worth the money.

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I bought the Gold because I figured I could afford to buy it and some maps. Then when or if, I feel I have to have color I would be able to use the maps I already have. So far I've been quite happy with it and I don't regret my choice. <_< But, if I see a Meridian Color for cheap...

Edited by High IQ
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I ended up with a Gold after deciding between the Gold and the Platinum. I didn't need the barometer, compass and altimeter that the Platinum had, (like JohnnyVegas, I've got a watch with all that) and I figured it would be pretty rare that I even needed all the memory it had. The Gold has suited me fine.


The color units and the SportTracs have come out since I've purchased my Gold and I'm still very happy with it. The color units seem to eat more batteries, and the SportTracs... well, the case on this one seems nearly bulletproof. It's been dropped more than once, spends a great deal of time attached to the handlebar of my dual-sport motorcycle, and gets abused by my kids, ages 7 & 4, and it keeps on ticking.


If my MeriGold does ever die (knock on wood), it will be replaced with the same.


- Kewaneh

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I use and vouch for the durablity of the Meridian Gold.


On my third day owning the Merigold, it fell forty feet of a rocky cliff. It bounced off of a rockpile on the way down. On another occasion, I drove away (with it on the roof of my truck) and it flew into a dirt gully. This was several months ago and it works fine (a bit scratched up though). I hide and find plenty of caches with it and I don't have any complaints.


When funds are available, I'm either going to buy Mapsend Topo or Directroute. I'm leaning towards the Topo software because it has better than stock street maps and topo maps.


I cache in some mountainous areas and regular street maps are worthless. I ended up spending an hour and half trying to find a cache that I thought was at the base of a large mountain. in reality, it was on the other side of the mountain. With topo software, I would have been able to see this and make a different approach.


I like the autorouting feature of Directroute, but don't spend much time in the "big city" to justify it.


I use GSAK software and download up to 200 cache waypoints into my GPS at a time. This takes me about 30 seconds. With the addition of a PalmIIIXE PDA, I cache paperless.


Feel free to PM me if you have further questions.



Edited by Kit Fox
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I'll throw in my $.02 for the Gold.

I've had mine for a couple months now,

and am very pleased.

The memory capability makes this a winner

over anything else. It came /w a 16M card and I

have yet to fill it up.


You might check out The GPS Store on the net.

I got a package deal w/software.

They have very good prices.



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I use the Platnum. I travel all over the world so the increase in memory card space is a plus. I am currently using the mapsend streets europe. i have converted all of europe to image file regions, and i just download them to the GPSr to where ever i am going that week. The onboard compass i can not get to calibrate that is about the only fault I have with mine.

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I've been using the Platinum for almost 2 years.


In opposition to those that think the extra cost isn't worth it, I think it is.


I use the 3-axis compass all the time in my search for caches when I'm within 100 feet as it will give me live triangulation when using the waypoint as a goto as I'm walking up towards the cache location. As I'm also acutely aware of how fast weather can change where I'm at, I use the barometer to keep track of impending weather changes.


This unit has taken bumps on the road off the jeep at 25-30 MPH, dunkings in rivers; one successfully, one not as the gasket gave out. A few days drying it out and all was well, that is until I broke the wires on the solder points which Mr. Weinerdog was very kind to fix for me. All-in-all, a solid device.


Until Garmin can come up with a 3-axis floating compass, I'll not consider moving on, although the color screen on that 60c/cs is awesome.

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I use a Meridian Gold. I did not buy the Platinum because I already have a Suunto watch with a Barometer, Compass and Altimeter-so why spend money to duplicate what I have. I did not buy the Color Meridian because I do not see a real need for a color screen, sure color would be cool but I would rather spend money on Software.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but wouldn't the built-in compass allow the GPS to point in the appropriate direction without you moving in any direction?


On my 60CS, the arrow will point in the cache direction even when I'm standing still, as long as the compass is on. If the compass is off, I need to be moving for the arrow to orient itself towards the cache.


This alone is a nice reason to go for the Platinum over the Gold.



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if you wish to use the auto routing feature or use the map screen much at all I recommend the color. It simply is much easier to read than monochrome screens.


I have the color meridian and the autoroute software. I love it. The only downfall of the software is that the autorouting directions are made by the same folks who power the web based driving direction software at mapquest so the directions are sometimes not the best. I have never gotten directions that wouldn't get me from a to b, but I have gotten directions that moved me in strange ways like turning left, right, right, then left when I could have just gone straight the whole time.


I think an electronic compass would have been nice on the color unit, but if I had to do it over again I would choose the color screen over the compass.

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