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Three New Magellans!


hwyman
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It looks like they finally did something good with the eXplorist series. About time...the first three in the series sucked! The press release follows:

 

For Immediate Release

 

THALES UNVEILS UNPRECEDENTED HANDELD NAVIGATION SOLUTIONS AT CES WITH THREE NEW MAGELLAN EXPLORIST PALM-SIZE GPS HANDHELDS

 

New eXplorist Handhelds First to Deliver PC-Style File Management, Rechargeable Lithium-Ion Batteries and Geocaching Application – all in a compact and affordable package

 

Las Vegas, NV (January 5, 2005) Thales continues to rewrite the rulebook for handheld GPS as it announces today the CES debut of three additions to its breakthrough Magellan® eXplorist™ line of compact, powerful, yet easy-to-use receivers. Complete with built-in mapping, the Magellan eXplorist 400, eXplorist 500 and eXplorist 600 are the first handheld GPS receivers to deliver PC-like file management, rechargeable lithium-ion batteries and a PC application designed specifically for transferring geocache information from the Internet to the eXplorist for the popular web-based outdoor activity called geocaching. These new eXplorist handhelds represent the definitive GPS guidance solution to meet the more diverse navigation needs of today’s consumer – both in the city and the outdoors. The complete Magellan eXplorist line of six receivers delivers more advanced features, more powerful performance, and more value than the competition, from just $99.99 to $449.99.

 

“In addition to offering the sought after features that have boosted the popularity of the Magellan eXplorist 100, 200 and 300 thus far,” said Christian Bubenheim, vice president and general manager for Thales’ consumer products, “the eXplorist 400, 500, and 600 introduce an all-new advanced set of features to the series, including being the first in their class to deliver unlimited SD card memory expansion with a built-in SD card reader/writer. The new handhelds also provide unlimited storage of waypoints, routes and track logs when using an optional Secure Digital memory card so that any available memory can be used to store whatever the users wants – a first in storage options that avid navigators will appreciate over limited waypoint, route and track log storage on other GPS receivers.”

 

Other firsts found in the eXplorist 400, 500 and 600 include:

The exclusive PC-style file management feature that allows users to create multiple files, folders and directories to store and maneuver through information in a PC-like structure.

 

The ability to calculate an area and perimeter simply by marking points on the map screen.

 

The Magellan geocaching manager software, a one-of-a-kind solution that simplifies geocaching, one of the fastest growing GPS applications so customers no longer need to print information from a website and manually entering GPS coordinates in a GPS receiver, but can load information to an eXplorist instead so its accessible where it’s needed most - to guide them to cache treasures.

 

All three models feature a high-speed USB data port to upload geocache coordinates and optional maps

 

eXplorist 400: At $299.99, the white-cased, four-level grayscale eXplorist 400 delivers all of the major league GPS features above in a compact mapping unit, and is the first to do so at a $299.99 price point.

 

eXplorist 500: For those who want color GPS like no other, the eXplorist 500 delivers the advanced functionality of the eXplorist 400 plus a large color screen. At $399.99, it’s the most affordable color GPS available.

 

eXplorist 600: The eXplorist 600 rounds out the series with an unbeatable combination of features, including a color transflective TFT screen, a barometer, altimeter, thermometer and 3-axis electronic compass (which eliminates the need to be in motion to get a direction heading) – all for a breakthrough price of just $449.99.

 

While the eXplorist handhelds offer a variety of features to provide a complete set of solutions, all deliver a compact, waterproof housing IPX-7 at a weight of less than four ounces for fit-in-your-pocket convenience; a large 2.3” diagonal display; built-in maps of major roads, waterways, parks and airports; the ability to calculate vertical profiles for elevations of roads, trails and more; and a WAAS/EGNOS-enabled, 14-parallel-channel GPS receiver that delivers three-meter accuracy with fast, reliable position fixes.

 

The Magellan eXplorist 400, 500 and 600 are compatible with most Magellan MapSend® software products for adding street detail, topographic data, marine navigation information and more, including the MapSend Topo 3D USA, MapSend Topo Canada and MapSend Lakes USA, MapSend Worldwide Basemap and MapSend DirectRoute, plus international titles. Other optional accessories include carrying cases, power adaptors, and mounting options for bikes, vehicles and more.

 

For more information on these and other Magellan products, visit www.magellangps.com.

 

About Thales’ navigation business

Thales’ navigation business unit develops and manufactures world leading positioning, navigation and guidance equipment. It markets its Magellan brand GPS solutions in the consumer electronics, recreation, and automotive markets, and its GPS and GNSS professional products in the survey, GIS/Mapping, and OEM markets. Key innovations include the first U.S. commercial hand-held GPS receiver for positioning and navigation, and the first handheld GPS with industry standard Secure Digital Memory Card capabilities. Thales’ navigation business unit is headquartered in Santa Clara, CA and has worldwide operations. For more information, visit http://www.thalesgroup.com/navigation

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Li-Ion rechargeable battery :angry:

 

Why not just stick with the 2xAA's?

 

Other then the battery, I think the color one's look great!

I would be interested in knowing if you can seach the waypoints stored on the SD card without having to load and unload them into the gps.

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PC application designed specifically for transferring geocache information from the Internet to the eXplorist for the popular web-based outdoor activity called geocaching

 

The Magellan site says this about that feature:

 

Download Geocache coordinates from Internet sites and use them on your outdoor adventures. This unique feature makes managing coordinates even easier with a PC-style file system. You don’t have to be a geocacher to appreciate the MagellanGeocache Manager.

 

Perhaps there's more than meets the eye, but I can do this now. Big deal. For a moment, I had visions of PDA-like display of the cache page. Oh well. Sounds like a gimmick, but I'll wait and see.

 

It seems the Li-ion batteries will be a big issue, also. They neglect to say whether the battery packs are removeable. That is, can I carry a spare? The Magellan page says:

 

This Li-Ion rechargeable battery pack can keep your eXplorist continuously powered-up for up to 14 hours. Recharge your battery directly through your receiver again and again without reducing its performance.

 

14 hours isn't a lot in a modern unit. The old yellow eTrex got well over that on 2 AAs, and the new 60cs which has comparable features to the new Explorist (I won't capitalize the x. Geesh), has a battery life of over 20 hours. I'd hoped that by using a non-traditional battery source, they were doing it for extended battery life, like in the 30-hour range.

 

This is doubly bad if I can't carry a spare battery or two for the unit. Again, this'll have to wait and see.

 

I'm quite excited about these new GPSs. If they're anything like the Meridians, they'll be a lot more useful than Magellan makes them out to be. I mean, Magellan doesn't even point out that you'll be able to autoroute with them. I just know some of you folks will have to be the first to get one, so when you do, the rest of us will want to hear about it.

 

Jamie

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I just know some of you folks will have to be the first to get one, so when you do, the rest of us will want to hear about it.

Uh, that would be me. :angry:

 

I took the plunge and have my order in--been craving color for a while but waiting for these guys.

 

A battery "pack" seems to imply removability, and therefore swapability. We'll see.

 

Edit: I ordered from a place called Boatfix.com because they had the lowest price I could spot ($359 for the 600). They don't say anything about availability, however, and as I'm checking other sites, they are mentioning February for the 400 and 500, and either February or March for the 600. Guess I'd better go take my medicine.

 

Oh, and LeBaron lists as an accessory a Li-ion battery pack for $65 Canadian...guess that's a bit more than $50 US. (ouch!) At least it looks like they can be removed.

Edited by embra
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Just when I'd pretty much written magellan off, they come up with something that looks promising. The file handling sounds interesting, but kind of one of those "I need to see it things". I may just have to swap an RC plane for another GPS receiver in this years toy budget.

 

Things I noticed:

 

SD card, the new far more detailed TOPO maps available now, Color display, small size, and all importantly, a patch antenna which means the units might not suffer the position lag and multipath problems in the mountains that the Sportrak/Meridans suffer from. The only serious negative I see is the battery, which would indicate this is target more at urban adventure and geocaching types rather than backpackers and the like.

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14 hours for battery life is more than I would ever need, but it would be nice if you could carry an extra one, LiIon will charge very fast and they do not have a memory problem. My guess is that these will charge in around two hours.

 

Maybe one of the geocachers in Las Vegas will go pick the reps brain for us :angry:

I was going to go myself, but I spaced out and forgot about CES. I might go to the Shot show instead, Magellan is always at that one also. Besides, the Shot Show has cooler stuff than electronics to look at. :angry:

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eXplorist 600: The eXplorist 600 rounds out the series with an unbeatable combination of features, including a color transflective TFT screen, a barometer, altimeter, thermometer and 3-axis electronic compass (which eliminates the need to be in motion to get a direction heading) – all for a breakthrough price of just $449.99.

 

YAH BABY! :angry:

 

Unfortunately, I just blew my Xmas wad on a new Ipaq. My Palm has been maxed out for a long time so this will have to wait for better times.

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Regarding the battery issue, it would be nice to have the new LIon batteries, but what would be best is if the "pack" could be replaced with widely available AA's or AAA's as a backup. If you use the GPSr for wilderness sports like kayaking and hiking, an outlet can be hard to find. Too bad I just got the Meridian Color. I like the 600 Explorist features.

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Just when I'd pretty much written magellan off, they come up with something that looks promising.

Yep I agree. 14 hours is enough for me 99% of the time, but there had better be something available later for that 1%. Something like what I got for my cell phone/pda would work. It allows me to attach 4 AA's to the USB port and charge it that way.

 

This the first GPS since I got my first one that has me this excited, I just hope the manager is as good as I am dreaming.

 

Hmmm I wonder how much more I can do with GSAK and this thing.

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After reading up on them the only one that looks good is the 600. Out of any of them it is the one that I would even think about considering, because I'm a die hard garmin guy. The downside about getting one is that I have all the garmin software and I don't feel like spending another $300 for what is esentially what I already have.

 

Nice looking unit, if we ever get a passaround going I would love to try it out.

 

Joe Smith

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Did anyone see what the screen resolution/pixels are?

 

Regarding the Li-Ion battery, this is a big positive. In a recent topic this was discussed. My PDA and cell phone use this type of battery. They are typically 3.7V, so can be charged by several sources. My PDA can be charged by a computer USB port(outputs 5V), or by these at home or in the car:

826489b9-c60e-4f13-bdcf-d783e83b7be7.jpg

 

As Dan_Edwards says, there is also a small case that holds 4 AA batteries and is supposed to charge the PDA Li-Ion battery several times. Just carry this in the field. You can easily make one of these with a USB receptical and a 4 AA case ( a couple of dollars in parts.) I am very tired of removing, charging, re-installing AAs in my GPSr. If I had to do this for my PDA and Cell phone, which I use every day, I would be even more insane.

 

I hope the screen on the Explorists are of top quality. I have been waiting to upgrade my Magellan and I think this is the one.

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Did anyone see what the screen resolution/pixels are?

 

Regarding the Li-Ion battery, this is a big positive.  In a recent topic this was discussed.  My PDA and cell phone use this type of battery.  They are typically 3.7V, so can be charged by several sources.  My PDA can be charged by a computer USB port(outputs 5V), or by these at home or in the car:

826489b9-c60e-4f13-bdcf-d783e83b7be7.jpg

 

As Dan_Edwards says, there is also a small case that holds 4 AA batteries and is supposed to charge the PDA Li-Ion battery several times.  Just carry this in the field.  You can easily make one of these with a USB receptical and a 4 AA case ( a couple of dollars in parts.)  I am very tired of removing, charging, re-installing AAs in my GPSr.  If I had to do this for my PDA and Cell phone, which I use every day, I would be even more insane.

 

I hope the screen on the Explorists are of top quality.  I have been waiting to upgrade my Magellan and I think this is the one.

Very good info, thanks.

 

I remove the AA's from my Legend almost daily to recharge them.

It would be nice to charge them in the gps.

 

Maybe the DC car cord for these new gps will also charge the battery when using it.

Edited by Milbank
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It seems like some of the features may already be found in the meridian series.

 

The file manager may just be what they call the card utlities in the meridian, but a little more advanced to create submenus.

 

It also sounds like there will be the same limits to the number of waypoint/tracks/routes that can be held in the active memory (e.g. only 2000 track points, 500 waypoints...).

 

If you also think that it will display the full GPX file data, then you will most likely be severly disapointed when you get it. The software sounds like it will just be PC based, and will only send the coordinates to the GPSr (probably because no third party software will support it when it first comes out).

 

The preimeter calculater is probably like a little used feature on the meridian that creates a manual route on the fly (if you want more info ask me, or look in your manual...it's under the "verticle profile" section).

 

They also make it seem like this is the first GPSr with SD memory...

 

Only having four screens may be a limit to some people...

 

Wyatt W.

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I hope Magellan has fixed the way they handle maps. In addition it was interesting that none of the releases mentioned autorouting. I assume direct route will work, but I am hoping for a more elegant solution, similiar to the 60C autorouting which works beautifully. My ideal GPS is a 60C with an SD slot (or 1gig internal memory), so these new Magellans MAY come close

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I saw on the Magellan site that the 600 reads 14 satellites vs. my STMap's 12.

 

I am also concerned with the number of screens, but I'm hoping that it is a wording issue since the 9 screens is fairly standard for Magellan. By this I mean they say "4 navigation screens". Perhaps they are referring only to the nav screens? Then, maybe, add to those the "new" e-compass, sat status, location, and whatever the other 2 screens are (I don't recall off the top of my head).

 

My other issue is the screen size vs. my ST Map. This eX600 screen is the same width but almost 1/2 shorter than my STMap. Perhaps the "pop" of the color would make this a non issue?

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I hope Magellan has fixed the way they handle maps. In addition it was interesting that none of the releases mentioned autorouting. I assume direct route will work, but I am hoping for a more elegant solution, similiar to the 60C autorouting which works beautifully.  My ideal GPS is a 60C with an SD slot (or 1gig internal memory), so these new Magellans MAY come close

I would not hold my breath waiting for a Garmin with an SD slot. When I was the GPS buyer for a retail store I always brought this up with the Garmin Reps. They told me this was one of things that would come up in sales meeting but the higher ups never went along. Two years ago the reps said there was one planed for release in a year, but it never happen. my guess is that unless Magellan gains market share it will not happen Garmin did put out the e-map, but then they used a thier own chip design so they could gouge consumers on the price.

Edited by JohnnyVegas
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"Garmin with an SD slot. When I was the GPS buyer for a retail store I always brought this up with the Garmin Reps. They told me this was one of things that would come up in sales meeting but the higher ups never went along."

 

This is the primary reason why I have never purchased or will purchase a Garmin unit. 56MB (60Cs) and 115MB (76CS) are just to limiting unless one carries a laptop with them on extended trips and spends forever uploading new maps.

 

Without the ability for adding additional user memory (eg. SD card)I see no reason to have a Garmin. That reason and coupled with the fact that the sensor cannot be turned off by the user in the 'S' models (altitude display is worthless in a pressurized jet cabin) has kept me away from Garmin. Most of their units (with the exception of the 60c/s) also employ patch style antennas, and they always dropping sat. locks in light tree cover, unless one wants to have an external antenna taped to their hat.

 

I just hope that the eXplorist 600 has a decent TFT screen (only 16 color - not very high tech for today) and the antenna system is equal to the Meridian's I will purchase one ASAP!

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Is the Explorist 600 black or dark green? I'm glad Magellan finally put these out. I felt that Garmin had vastly outclassed Magellan with there 60 and 76 series gpsr. I would have completely jump ship if only the garmins came with SD slots. If I'm reading the press release correctly (assuming it's correct to begin with), the impression I get is that the SD memory will be seamlessly integrated as opposed to being treated as a secondary memory source. If the battery pack is not easily removable, that will be a HUGE problem. Sometimes you are out in the woods away from outlets for days...not being able to swap out spare batteries would be bad in deed. I'm not enthusiastic about the patch antenae. Here in the Mid-Atlantic where most non-urban caches are under fairly heavy tree cover, a quad would seem the way to go...at least for me. If the new cache manager can read and store all the gpx info, that will be the killer app. I love Cachemate for my Palm, but I rather have it all on one device. My main concern is the ever annoying 'sling-shot' effect that appears to be common to other Magellan models. I'm going to assume that the same averaging algorithms are used in this model as well. Any current Explorists users want to comment on that?

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Without the ability for adding additional user memory (eg. SD card)I see no reason to have a Garmin.

 

Most of their units (with the exception of the 60c/s) also employ patch style antennas, and they always dropping sat. locks in light tree cover, unless one wants to have an external antenna taped to their hat.

I agree that their reticence to use some form of AFFORDABLE user-swappable memory is aggravating. However, if you want a quad helix antenna, you can also choose the 76 series and the GPS V (not sure if it's still available). They have other non-patch GPS units as well.

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Does anyone know when they will come up with a fix for the light that seems to always come on with the Mapsend DR?

 

Don

There are a LOT more MapSend DR quirks that need to be addressed besides the light. In fact, I find the light to be the least annoying of the things that DR messes with.

 

--Marky

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I can't see any mention of a serial port. USB and mapping is nice, but no serial connection will limit its usefullness for some.

Really? I'd bet that there are way more people with USB than serial, even modern PDAs have USB and no serial. What usefulness are you referring to?

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I wonder when they are going to start shipping these. It must be a ways off since tigergps.com doesn't have them on their site yet. Boatfix.com's prices are tempting, but I've never heard of that site. Has anyone had experience ordering from them before?

 

--Marky

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Really? I'd bet that there are way more people with USB than serial, even modern PDAs have USB and no serial. What usefulness are you referring to?

 

The serial port is for sending NMEA info to other devices, such as computers, PDAs, and boat navigational devices. Many mapping programs that chart your position need NMEA data. It is also useful for sending and receiving waypoints, tracks to/from PDAs. You can't do that with USB PDA to GPSr. My modern PDA has both serial and USB capabilities.

 

I understand the Garmin 60C and 76C models have both.

Edited by EScout
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I'm not sure what they were thinking with the rechargeable battery. I won't be happy about them unless we hear that you can swap it out with alkaline. I have some Kenwood FRS radios like that.

 

I can't walk into a gas station out on the middle of no where and buy a charged lithium ion battery. <_<

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I wonder when they are going to start shipping these.  It must be a ways off since tigergps.com doesn't have them on their site yet.  Boatfix.com's prices are tempting, but I've never heard of that site.  Has anyone had experience ordering from them before?

 

--Marky

Hi Marky

 

I called Magellan a few weeks ago when the new ones showed upon the Bass Pro shops web site, Magellan was not to happay about that, they said the retailers were not to post anything about the new Explorist until Feb. My guess they were caught off gaurd my Magellans press release

 

 

If anyone else wants to call Magellan, from the Magellan web site

 

North America

Our technical support phone representatives are available Monday through Friday, 6:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. P.S.T/P.D.T.

Telephone: 800 707 9971 or +1 909 394 5000 (Outside North America)

You may also reach technical support by fax: +1 909 394 7073

Europe:

From all European countries please dial:

00800 MAGELLAN (free phone), our customer representative will assist you in your language.

Edited by JohnnyVegas
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My main concern is the ever annoying 'sling-shot' effect that appears to be common to other Magellan models. I'm going to assume that the same averaging algorithms are used in this model as well. Any current Explorists users want to comment on that?

 

I've never experienced that w/ the eXplorist 200. I can usually walk right up to w/i a few feet of a cache (provided, of course, that the coord's are correct). I've read other posts about this "slingshot effect" and the only time I've experienced something that sounds similar is when I had a SportTrak Pro for a short time. I found the SPT so far off that I returned it (but maybe I was experiencing the "slingshot" and should have just stood still in the woods for awhile until things settled out; although---with the eX200 that's not necessary).

 

I have found that by tilting the eX200 in different directions (just a little) that I can often find a "sweet spot", i.e. a position which max's the # of sat's engaged. I have, many times had as many as 12 sat's locked on, and one time had 13. That time, the GPS said I was w/i 1' of the cache and I was, indeed, standing over it!

 

My biggest concern about the new eX series is the battery issue. By God, they had better have replaceable batteries, because there is usually not a place to recharge them out in the woods if you are on a multi-day trip (I've looked and looked, but I can't find a power port on a canoe). If they blew this, then they really blew it. Otherwise, I can't say enough good things about the eX200.

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Most of their units (with the exception of the 60c/s) also employ patch style antennas, and they always dropping sat. locks in light tree cover, unless one wants to have an external antenna taped to their hat.

 

I just hope that the eXplorist 600 has a decent TFT screen (only 16 color - not very high tech for today) and the antenna system is equal to the Meridian's I will purchase one ASAP!

The only Garmins that use a patch antenna are the E-trex sereis, the Gekos and the Four runners. The larger Garmins , GPS II, GPSIII, GPS V, GPS 72, GPS 76, GPS 60s, GPS 12, GPS 12XL and few others use a Quad-Helix

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A couple of more people are concerned with the Li-ion battery situation. On my post of Jan 5, I told about my experience with my PDA and the 4 ways to charge this device (wall wart, cig plug, USB, and AA case)

In the field:

You will need to carry 4 AA alks or Lithiums. You will put these in a small case that either has a direct plug for the device or a USB receptical that you plug the device's USB cable (which is also a charge cable.)

This case works because 4 AAs give 6V and this will charge the internal Li-ion which will most likely be 3.7V (Cell phones and PDAs use this voltage.) You should be able to charge the device 2 to 3 times on a set of AAs (depending on the capacity of the internal li-ion battery.

In the field, using your GPSr 8 hours a day, I estimate 5 days use or more with a charged internal battery and 4 AA alks.

In normal use starting at home and in and out of cars, charging and using the Li-ion is much superior in convenience than using rechargable AAs.

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In normal use starting at home and in and out of cars, charging and using the Li-ion is much superior in convenience than using rechargable AAs.

 

I beg to differ...it's not very convenient when you forget to plug in your Li-ion the night before. AA can always be had on short notice.

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I can't see any mention of a serial port. USB and mapping is nice, but no serial connection will limit its usefullness for some.

Really? I'd bet that there are way more people with USB than serial, even modern PDAs have USB and no serial. What usefulness are you referring to?

<removed...others said it first>

Edited by Stunod
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I'm with Escout on this. My Palm Tungsten T has a built-in rechargeable battery (I think it's Li-ion, for that matter) that requires a visit to the cradle to top up. When I forget to recharge or I'm away from my desktop for an extended time, my battery recharger of the type Escout describes brings it back to life--though I use my NiMH AA's in the pack rather than alkelines.

 

I will admit that the NiMH AA's have worked pretty well for me in my Meridian, and I wish at this point in time that they would have stuck with the old way. Perhaps I'll be persuaded otherwise.

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Since the battery thing is a big sticking point (and people keep mailing me to ask what I think about them) let me describe what I _hope_ this is without having any inside information.

 

RCR-V3. What's that? It's lithiium ion. At manufacturer price, it's about $50 which meanson the street they're about $20. They're rechargeable. They could be described as a "pack". They're basically the same form fractor as a pair of AA's in a little pod or cartridge. They're mechanically distingusable from a pair of AA's so a switch can let the charger circuit know to not dump electricity into your Alkalines and thus risk leakage or rupture. Most importantly, you can just put a plain old pair of AA's from the convenience store in place.

 

If you haven't seen these, there's a reasonable description of the electrical and mechanical considerations at a Steves Digicam which is a market that's more finicky about their batteries than geocachers.

 

This would satisfy those that want to use commodity, field replaceable batteries AND those that want to be able to recharge in the unit.

 

But Magellan's EE's didn't ask me...

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I have a Palm T3 that uses a built-in, non-swappable Li-on battery. I don't mind it having a built-in battery, in fact I like the fact that it does. I carry it with me all the time and every workday, it sits in its cradle, where I Hotsync its data to my computer, and where it also charges up its battery. So, my usage means that charging it is very convenient (more so than with my older PDAs where I had to swap in fresh AAA's from a wall charger).

 

My GPSr usage is different. It sits in my desk at home, or in my bag, or wherever I left it last (like in my camera or camping backpack). Often times, I use it for very extended periods in a variety of vehicles or while walking/hiking. Because there is no regular interaction with it, I can't always be sure that it is fully charged plus I would want more operational time that a single charge would provide.

 

Yes, I could use a portable charger pack (I have one of those 4xAA packs for my T3) but I certainly don't want to carry an additional one for my GPSr. Based on my habits, a rechargeable GPSr that can't take off-the-shelf AA batteries is not a good fit for me, even though I get along just fine with a PDA with the same battery system.

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Yes, it'd be really nice if they did use the RCR-V3 form factor. It gives you the best features of both standard AAs and proprietary lithium packs. The device can safely recharge the cell internally for normal use and the user can use regular AA cells in a pinch when recharging isn't practical.

 

Unfortunately I think it's unlikely that the eXplorists use this lithium cell design since I'd think Magellan would advertise it if they did (but I hope I'm wrong).

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I have found that by tilting the eX200 in different directions (just a little) that I can often find a "sweet spot", i.e. a position which max's the # of sat's engaged. I have, many times had as many as 12 sat's locked on, and one time had 13. That time, the GPS said I was w/i 1' of the cache and I was, indeed, standing over it!

I'd like a little more info on the sweet spot.

 

Is it near horizontal? Or is it like 45 degrees? Easier to read the screen.

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