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What Would You Ask Garmin


BlueDeuce
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I want to add my vote for Macintosh support. I keep Virtual PC on my Mac almost exclusively for updating the maps on my GPS V, which I do frequently, or to update its firmware. I'd love to do those things in OS X.

 

If Garmin thinks it's too difficult or expensive to provide Mac support in house (it probably isn't, but that's another soapbox), maybe they should contract with someone who already produces Macintosh GPS software. James Associates, the developer of MacGPS Pro, would be a logical choice, as would Karen Nakamura, the author of GPSy. (I have no connection with either one except as a customer.)

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More of a suggestiion for MapSource...

The ability to generate a route or track that follows a feature like a river ....

Select the start point and end point and it draws a line that can be converted into a route or track... would make the GPSr more user friendly for river running...

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I also would love to have 24K topo's. The first one's to crack that nut win's. Maybe Garmin should stick with making unit's and let the map maker's make map's. It may open up a large market segment. I have an eTrex and a $GPSmap60cs(L)$. L for lockup. I know they will fix that soon. I hope. I do like them but am sure I will like next year's model's better. Of corse it may be a brand that starts with an "M" cuz I bet they are also reading this tread.

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I would cast my vote and money for a 24k topo program for my whole state besides the one offered for the National Parks. Also I hate the way you have to enter a waypoint manually on the 76CS. I like the 76S method much better and it is so much easier. That is the only one small think I don't care for on the 76CS

Huh? They should have the same software.

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Add my vote for more memory - both internal and SD. I have a 256 MB USB memory stick that costs less than $50 and is the size of a key fob - how hard can it be to put at least 256MB into a $500 GPSr that's the size of your hand?

 

Even with increased internal memory, there should be an SD slot - allows for customized cards and for virtually unlimited memory!

 

I was close to buying the 60CS (to upgrade from my eTrex Vista) but decided not to soley due to the memory limitations. I kept thinking "With memory being so small and inexpensive these days, they must be coming out with units with more memory than that!"

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Having a GPSMAP 60C with CitySelect newly installed and living in a high growth area there is one feature that I would really like to see.

 

City Select seems to get very confused if you are driving a new road that is not in it's database.

 

What I'd like to see CitySelect have the ability to learn new roads as you drive them.

 

When you plug your GPS back into your computer, it would ask you about the road, (name it). You could then update your copy of CitySelect at that point with the new road.

 

I'd also like to see the ability to upload this information to Garmin for future versions of City Select.

 

Semper Fi

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I have only had my GPS for four weeks and for the most part I think it's great, but here are my suggestions.

 

1) More Memory is a good one to have. I would like to see (in future unitis) the option to add more memory to some of the midrange units, without having to pay for things like the Electronic Compass, or Barometric Altimiter.

 

I have a Rino 120:

2) 2 or 4 batteries, not 3. I like to use Rechargeble Batteries. The odd number of batteries in this unit make it unsafe to use rechargebles (I know; I work for a battery manufacturer). There is no 3 battery charger, and mixing batteries of different charge levels in a device or charger is not recommended.

 

3) I don't always use the Radio. I would like the Rino to remember if I turned the Radio off last time, instead of me having to go through the menu every time I start up.

 

4) Higher resolution screen.

 

5) When cycling through screens, skip the Navigation screen if I am not currently navigating.

 

6) The Time would be nice, on all the screens. You could fit it on the title bar.

 

7) The ability to scroll through the dates of the Sun and Moon/Hunt and Fish Calculators. Having to type each date in with the little stick and keypad is ridiculously slow.

 

8) Where I live WAAS is only avalible in open areas, and I have to turn it off if there are trees around. I would like to have the option to turn WAAS on and off from the Satalite and Radio pages; instead of MAIN MENU -> SETUP -> SYSTEM -> WAAS -> Disabled. Right now we are talking 20+ pushes and clicks on the joystick every time I want to swich it.

 

9) I have MetroGuide Canada version 4. I assume the POI take up memory. Is it possible to limit the number of POI it downloads?

 

10) I was looking at a waypoint (from the FIND'N GO -> MAP screen), but accidently moved the point. I would like the ability to undo the last move command, or a move here 'OK'/'Cancel' prompt.

 

<edit grammar and spelling>

11) Spell check look-up feature. (just kidding)

Edited by Circle of Confusion
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I really like the idea of being able to map out roads (or trails) and add them to MapSource.

 

I really would rather not have an expansion slot. I've blooped my 3+ into creeks on a few occasions accidently (and once on purpose to rinse off smoe mud). I really appreciate that it is waterproof. I doubt that a unit with an SD card would remain dry after being submerged.

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I really like the idea of being able to map out roads (or trails) and add them to MapSource.

being submerged.

While not from Garmin, there are tools available to let you build your own maps.

 

Google for:

 

gpsMapEdit

cGPSMapper

sendmap

 

You'll find everything you need.

 

GeoBC

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BACK TO BASICS. . . would like the 'Operator's Manual' in a usable language - you know, something like plain American English . . . have learned to operate my 60CS by trial & error. I wonder what features I have yet to learn but could use.

 

The manual was, very apparently, cleverly designed to sell the companion CD to learn operation of the unit, affectionately speaking.

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I would cast my vote and money for  a 24k topo program for my whole state besides the one offered for the National Parks. Also I hate the way you have to enter a waypoint manually on the 76CS. I like the 76S method much better and it is so much easier. That is the only one small think I don't care for on the 76CS

Huh? They should have the same software.

That is what I thought too but that is not the case for entering waypoints manually. On the 76S waypoint numbers are entered by moving the number up or down with the rocker button. The 76CS uses the etrex method of scrolling through a display with all numbers displayed and the rocker button is still used. I guess it is just what you are use to and I was use to the 76S but I will get use to the CS after awhile

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2) The fonts on the 76CS are made smaller for the data fields. With all 4 data fields on my GPS V, there was still plenty of map displayed. On the 76CS (and like units) with the 4 data fields, the map is at best 50% of the screen.

I'll second that for the GPSmap60c, I would love to have smaller data fields so I display 4 data fields without taking up half the screen.

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2) 2 or 4 batteries, not 3. I like to use Rechargeble Batteries. The odd number of batteries in this unit make it unsafe to use rechargebles (I know; I work for a battery manufacturer). There is no 3 battery charger, and mixing batteries of different charge levels in a device or charger is not recommended.

I don't know of any charger that takes exactly 3 cells, but there are models that have separate circuits to charge each cell independently and switch to trickle-charge mode when it's fully charged. The Maha C401FS:

http://www.thomasdistributing.com/mhc401fs.htm is one such model. RayOVac's 1-hour charger also uses 4 independent circuits as do some from other makers. I use one with my LED lights which use 3 AAA NiMH cells and with a pocket light that has a single AA NiMH cell. You just insert from 1 to 4 cells and the individual charging lights indicate when the cells reach full charge

 

Using a smart charger with separate charge-level detection circuits for each cell is preferable in any event since it assures that each cell is fully charged. So having an odd number of cells in a device is no longer a reason to avoid the use of rechargeables.

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I have not been able to find another post on this board that adresses the Garmin GPSMAP76S issues that matter to me. I guess this is as good a place as any to see if there is any reaction. I have had this unit for 19 months. The original Software Version 3.2 is still in there. But I have never read that the available upgrades would change any of the areas of my concern. I do like this unit. It is NOT too large in my opinion. The size of the unit is perfect for me. BUT, I do have many software issues with this unit.

 

1) The Power and Data port is not accessable when the unit is held in a generic dashboard mount. If it was located higher up on the case, that might not be a problem.

 

2) I usually use my unit inside a protective soft case. You have to be very precise to turn the unit OFF this way. Pressing that recessed Power Key through a layer of clear plastic usually also presses an adjacent Key. It won't turn off when that happens. The Power Key should ignore adjacent Keys. I seem to have basically the same problem with the Rocker Key. Trying to enter waypoint names while the unit is inside that soft case can be very frustrating. It just seems to have a mind of it's own. When you try to shift to the next column to the right, it often changes the current letter instead.

 

3) The Distance to Destination field is displayed to a resolution of 1/100th of a foot within 100' of Dest. Is displayed to a resoluton of 1/10th of a foot within 528' of Dest. Is displayed to a resolution of 52.8' above that. WHY? At the very least they could switch from Miles to Feet below 1000'. Also those Miles and Feet designations are very small. Why not just show one large capital letter of F(eet) or M(iles).

 

4) The Project Location feature is very lame. You can only enter distance as Miles to a resolution of 52.8 Feet. At the very least give me miles to .001 (5.28 Feet) or better yet just let me enter feet to one decimal place. Also when I enter a Bearing I want it to stay at what I entered. This thing sometimes tweaks the Bearing for no reason that makes any sense to me. And how about being able to enter a decimal Bearing.

 

5) If you gave us more memory could we have longer waypoint names ?

 

6) Under the Setup Page Layout category I want more flexibility. Take for example the Plot Page. Useless to me. So why can't I choose 4,5, or 6 rows. Let me fill up the whole page. Also why isn't the GOTO Waypoint Name listed on this page? Why isn't DATUM one of my data field choices? Why don't you show Lat/Long in the list of choices when you have chosen small boxes. Grey it out. Don't hide it. Also why don't I have the option to choose LAT or LONG separately so they can be larger text, and more visible. I want a MEMO field that I can choose and edit. And if you make it long enough you can give me a Left, Center, and Right Justify option, and I can have 3 MEMO fields. I really want this flexibility for most of the pages. And how about letting me turn a page off so I don't have to scroll through it if I don't want to see it.

 

7) Why can't I see more NEAREST Waypoints? I seem to recall being limited to only 15.

 

8) When I mark a Waypoint why is the altitude data so finicky? It might seem like I have a decent lock, but when I mark the waypoint the altitude can be quite a bit off what was on the display when I pressed the Mark Key. Give me the altitude I was looking at when I mark, or give me a reason why.

 

9) If I press MENU MENU I can see the Light Status, the Memory Status, and the Power Status. How about WAAS, Compass, Altimiter Calibration ON/OFF Status ect. One place to quickly view ALL important settings.

 

10) The Electronic Compass has an ON/OFF shortcut. What about one for WAAS ect.

 

Except for possibly your lower cost units, don't assume you know how your customers are going to use your product. Give them maximum flexibility and let them be creative.

Edited by Cardinal Red
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Better reception

Bluetoth

Mac support

SD cards

Intelligent usage of landscape screen in fore* devices, e.g. adding the waypoint symbol in the list of waypoints

Backlit buttons in fore* series

AutoLap not only after a specified distance, but also when you reach a specified point for the second, third etc. time

More data fields for waypoint, e.g. in the foretrex I can only add the altitude, not the current date, time or any other comment.

 

For further improvement opportunities see also my German FAQ about GPS devices

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Legend (B/W)

 

How about creating a software development kit so that third-party vendors could create new software to work ON the GPS itself.

 

Bluetooth sounds like a great idea.

 

More memory, and an SD card slot, as long as it doesn't hurt durability or waterproofness.

 

If I have more than 10 waypoints, I don't like it how the "keyboard" thing pops up (when I try to find a waypoint by name). That should only come up if I ask it to.

 

It would be cool if it could store some waypoint data (and a LOT of it) so that I can go paperless with just my GPS (i.e., cache notes, hints, and the last few logs).

 

Built-in DGPS receiver channels, so I don't need extra hardware.

 

And, of course, all of this on a small, cheap, low power handheld like the Legend

:P

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I would like to see smaller regions, perhaps county by county to select maps to download to your GPSr.

 

I would like the abity to remove POI from the maps, I really only want the streets, not the POI. This would allow me to upload more maps.

Just streets with no POI is very much like the World Map. Also maps like City Select allow you to select many many pieces within a county in a lot of cases.

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Legend (B/W)

 

How about creating a software development kit so that third-party vendors could create new software to work ON the GPS itself.

 

Bluetooth sounds like a great idea.

 

More memory, and an SD card slot, as long as it doesn't hurt durability or waterproofness.

 

If I have more than 10 waypoints, I don't like it how the "keyboard" thing pops up (when I try to find a waypoint by name). That should only come up if I ask it to.

 

It would be cool if it could store some waypoint data (and a LOT of it) so that I can go paperless with just my GPS (i.e., cache notes, hints, and the last few logs).

 

Built-in DGPS receiver channels, so I don't need extra hardware.

 

And, of course, all of this on a small, cheap, low power handheld like the Legend

:rolleyes:

When the keyboard pops up you can just hit quit or exit to get rid of it. At least on the newer Gamin models.

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map panning. And beef up the processor in the Legend/Vista series. (I'm still using ol' Bluey).

Old blue does have map panning.

 

Go to the map screen, go to options, then choose pan map, you use the click stick to move the pointer around, get to the edges and it pans the map.

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I have to agree with Welch, I would love a expansion slot for memory. Just put it behind a waterproof cover. And, as Tubemonkey stated, more internal memory.

Everyone seems to address the memory expansion issue. Here is my two cents. If they add memory, one problem with an SD slot is water-resistance. And, yes, you can put it behind a cover. But PLEASE don't copy Lowrance! The idea of placing the MMC card INSIDE the battery compartment BEHIND the batteries makes it a bit .... hmmm, what is the word? .... INCONVENIENT?

 

Just a little snap cover on the case would keep most moisture out (sans a heavy rain) and would be easily accessible.

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I've been a happy eTrex Vista owner for 3 years, and I am ready to upgrade. Here's my list of items I'd like to see above and beyond the current offerings before I'll make the leap:

 

1. More internal memory. An SD card is OK, especially if I can swap in my camera's card, but I just don't see how to keep that connector watertight and CLEAN. And it looks very very hard to clean it once it gets mucked up.

 

2. Garmin V format in an updated GPSr. I really like the horizontal/vertical display feature as it makes the GPS much more usable in the car. I'm not flush enough to buy a StreetPilot for the car and a GPSMAP-whatever for the trail.

 

3. More internal memory. When I go on vacation I don't have any way to update the maps. If I guess wrong on my map selection I'm stuck: with more memory I can upload more of the surrounding area, just in case.

 

4. Some kind of ultra secure clip or holder for a backpack strap so I can clip the thing up and out of danger and retrieve it quickly. Belt clips are a joke unless the belt can be threaded through the holder. I'm talking about bushwacking-proof security.

 

5. More internal memory. If I have to go from 30 hours on a set of batteries to 10 in order to get several hundred Mb of map storage, that would be fine with me. I can always carry more batteries.

 

6. If you could squeeze in the rest of the GPX file info and display it on the screen I could dump my PDA. I know, I could just buy an iQue, but with the short battery life and fragile construction I'm not interested.

 

7. More 24k Topo maps. The National Park maps are fantastic - give us more!!!!

 

8. 24k Topos need space - MORE INTERNAL MEMORY. Please.

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Cardinal Red:

 

Garmin has incorporated some of those recommendations in the 60CS already.

 

(Turn pages on/off and re-order them, there is a big data field option of just 3 fields filling the screen with big text)

 

The altitude data is so finicky (non-WAAS) because triangulation in a "horizontal" aspect doesn't provide much "verticle" accuracy (over-simplification but generally applicable...)

 

WAAS helps, but still... Now add weather pressure differences if your unit has an altimeter--and the unit's trying to figure it out from variable reference points!

 

My PDF viewer has a search function--couldn't you also call up the manual via Google and use your web-browser's text search?

 

On wants, I second Linux support and 24k topos too...

 

hth,

 

Randy

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map panning.  And beef up the processor in the Legend/Vista series.  (I'm still using ol' Bluey).

Old blue does have map panning.

 

Go to the map screen, go to options, then choose pan map, you use the click stick to move the pointer around, get to the edges and it pans the map.

Yeah, I meant easier map panning. Twould be cool to swipe a pen across teh screen and have the maps keep up quickly.

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I use my 60CS mainly for off road hunting, fishing, etc. I have the Mapsource Topo map product. I wish this was available in 1:24,000 scale instead of the rather large 1:100000 scale. I know the national parks are available in 1:24,000 scale, but around where I live, it isn't.

 

Agreed. I've emailed them several times about this to see if they have plans in the making, but I get no response.

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One more for Mac support. All the issues I have have already been addressed. It amazes me that the software/hardware engineering department is not all over forums like this, looking for good ideas, what the consumer wants, etc. I would think internet forums are the first place to go. You have the full range of users, from newbies to experienced, loyal customers. Think of the loyalty you'd get if you took the time to respond and incorporate these ideas. Users would see that and reciprocate by buying Garmin products. That goes for Magellan as well.

 

Forget paying some consulting firm $1M to do a study of what we want. 'Market research' is available right here. Free.

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I'd ask them to please, please fix the bug in the 60cs introduced sometime around firmware version 3.4.something that makes my unit crash when approaching certain streets with guidance text turned on. I was all excited that the release notes of the new firmware made it look like this problem had been addressed, but it didn't fix it (see my other post -- "60cs Beta Firmware - Disappointed").

 

The only fix for me is not to use guidance text (I like it because it names cross streets as you approach them) or to use an old version of the f/w. I'm really surprised this bug hasn't been fixed!

Edited by 4x5shooter
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