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Old 03-02-2014, 08:46 AM   #1
Monte Walsh OP
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Zumo 660/390 vs Montana 650

My apologies for launching yet another comparison thread. Need to get an upgraded GPS this spring from my eTrex Legend. Have been spending hours doing comparisons and reading as many threads as I can make sense of to try and understand the capabilities of the various models Garmin has available. I thought the Monterra would be it, but I don't want to pay for the privilege of being a beta tester until they get the kinks worked out of their software. Too bad since having a ruggedized Android device would have been useful for non-GPS applications.

Doing a comparison on gpscity.ca, I can get the following:

Zumo 660LM for $690
Zumo 390LM for $740
Montana 650 with CNNA and auto kit + LM update for $700

I already purchased the rugged mount for the 650 a while ago when I ordered some other parts, expecting I would own a Monterra by now, so buying the 650 with the auto kit gives me pretty much the same stuff as what comes bundled with the Zumo.

So, within that $50 range I think it pretty much comes down to superior track handling and off-bike battery life for the Montana vs Bluetooth and music player in the Zumo. I ride about 70/30 on/off road so that favors the Zumo but going hiking/hunting I could use the Montana as a replacement for my old eTrex.

Looking on the Zumo 340/350 thread it looks like you can push tracks from BaseCamp to the device, so I assume this would work on the 390 as well.

Any insights would be helpful, even if it's wait for another couple months and see if Garmin fixes the Monterra. Thanks.
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Old 03-02-2014, 05:05 PM   #2
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With the latest updates to the zumo 3x0 series, they handle Tracks equally well and in some ways better than the Montana. In addition, the Routing capabilities of the zumo's are much better than the Montana.

The primary comparison in your case is off-bike. The zumo's are not well suited for that and do not have the handheld versatility of the Montana.
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Old 03-03-2014, 07:05 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DRTBYK View Post
With the latest updates to the zumo 3x0 series, they handle Tracks equally well and in some ways better than the Montana. In addition, the Routing capabilities of the zumo's are much better than the Montana.

The primary comparison in your case is off-bike. The zumo's are not well suited for that and do not have the handheld versatility of the Montana.
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Old 03-03-2014, 07:54 AM   #4
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It's just my opinion, but the "some ways better" comment refers to several features that I've been looking for for years. Garmin seems to be standardizing on these for the On The Road zumo devices:
  • Tracks App: Alphabetical sorting.
  • Tracks App: 200 Tracks can be imported into the app.
  • The display of Track navigation data: e.g, Dist-to-Dest, Dist-to-Next, etc, as appropriate. Yes, these units actually convert the Track to a Route but the routes are faithful to the original Track.
  • High Track-point counts. The zumo/Navigator devices now support Tracks with up to 15K points regardless of distance.
  • Up to 15 Tracks can be concurrently displayed on the Map. Total on-map point count of 225,000pts.

What the On The Road devices don't do as well is they don't provide the Track Log recording options that the On The Trail devices do. They typically only do the "Auto" track log recording which does not generate very high-point-count Tracks in the Log.

The On The Road devices typically don't have settings for when to create an Archive. The On The Trail devices provide many more options for Track Archival.

The On The Trail devices can usually show many more Tracks concurrently but ultimately the limit is capped by the total point count the device supports.
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Old 03-03-2014, 08:20 AM   #5
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Thanks!
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Old 03-03-2014, 10:51 AM   #6
Monte Walsh OP
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Thanks for chiming in Dan. A bit surprised at your answer too, since there isn't a lot of love for the 390 shown, either here or on the zumoforums site. Read lots of posts about how much better the Montana handles Tracks. Looks like I'll go with the 390 for bike/truck and something like an Oregon as a handheld. Personally find the Montana a bit big as a handheld.

Is the Bluetooth implementation on the 390 the same as on the 660/665 ? Garmin specifically mentions in their marketing that you can pair to phone and 390, but lots of people seem to have difficulty doing this satisfactorily on the 660 series. Not sure if this is more a limitation of how Bluetooth is implemented on headsets and phones than on capabilities of the GPS unit. FWIW, I have a Sena SMH5-FM and iPhone 4S, but will probably switch to a Galaxy S5 later this year.
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Old 03-03-2014, 11:09 AM   #7
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Just to be clear, I do not own a zumo 3x0 device. But, I have confirmed the above info.

As for Bluetooth implementations, the older zumo 66x did not have a multi-channel Headset Pairing capability. The zumo 390 and NAV5 do support this so connectivity is quite versatile but if your headset doesn't support multi-channel pairing you may not have as much flexibility. I believe the Sena products do support this so you should be OK. I know that iPhone 4S, 5 and 5S can do multi-channel headset pairing (A2DP to one device, HSP/HFP to another). I have no experience with the Samsung phones.
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Old 03-03-2014, 11:43 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DRTBYK View Post
It's just my opinion, but the "some ways better" comment refers to several features that I've been looking for for years. Garmin seems to be standardizing on these for the On The Road zumo devices:
  • Tracks App: Alphabetical sorting.
  • Tracks App: 200 Tracks can be imported into the app.
  • The display of Track navigation data: e.g, Dist-to-Dest, Dist-to-Next, etc, as appropriate. Yes, these units actually convert the Track to a Route but the routes are faithful to the original Track.
  • High Track-point counts. The zumo/Navigator devices now support Tracks with up to 15K points regardless of distance.
  • Up to 15 Tracks can be concurrently displayed on the Map. Total on-map point count of 225,000pts.

What the On The Road devices don't do as well is they don't provide the Track Log recording options that the On The Trail devices do. They typically only do the "Auto" track log recording which does not generate very high-point-count Tracks in the Log.

The On The Road devices typically don't have settings for when to create an Archive. The On The Trail devices provide many more options for Track Archival.

The On The Trail devices can usually show many more Tracks concurrently but ultimately the limit is capped by the total point count the device supports.
Dan,

Thanks for the info. My Zumo 550 does auto log of tracks and you are correct that it converts to routes but I was not aware that 390 series can now follow tracks after usual Zumo conversion of tracks to routes without following a known route/map. Not sure if I am explaining correctly but will a Zumo 390 provide me with left/right/straight pointer similar to a true track follow function after it is converted to a route with or without city navigator?


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Old 03-03-2014, 01:03 PM   #9
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Since I do not own a zumo 3x0, I can't confirm how it will respond to navigating a converted-track Trip. But, if it functions like my NAV5 and I have no reason to think it won't, it will not care if there are roads on the map or not. Just don't allow the Trip (route) to be recalculated.

Here is a screenshot of an out-n-back Trail that is not on CNNA. It actually doesn't even start on the road.



Converted to a Trip (Route), and navigating.

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Old 03-05-2014, 04:20 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DRTBYK View Post
With the latest updates to the zumo 3x0 series, they handle Tracks equally well and in some ways better than the Montana. In addition, the Routing capabilities of the zumo's are much better than the Montana.

The primary comparison in your case is off-bike. The zumo's are not well suited for that and do not have the handheld versatility of the Montana.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Monte Walsh View Post
Doing a comparison on gpscity.ca, I can get the following:

Zumo 660LM for $690
Zumo 390LM for $740
Montana 650 with CNNA and auto kit + LM update for $700
For thos of us old slow guys, you are saying that these three GPS' are equivalent for on bike use? I have a 550 that I am tired of fixing. I need to check and see if I can toss my 550 into Garmin drop a $150 and get a refurbed 660. If so that will be the way that I go.

How different will the new units be compared to the old 550. I got very used to uploading/downloading tracks/routes, and it would be nice if the process was similar.

Thanks!
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Old 03-05-2014, 04:28 PM   #11
DRTBYK
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Equivalent for on-bike use, no. Capable, yes. The zumo's are better at on-Road Routing and should be very familiar to you although the zumo software has been considerably updated since your zumo 550.

Again, the distinction is on-bike vs. off-bike. Hard to beat a $150 zumo 660LM for on-bike use.
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