Designated GPS unit vs. Smart Phone

Discussion in 'GPS 101 - Which GPS For Me' started by NJDirtRiders, Nov 24, 2013.

  1. BigFatAl

    BigFatAl Been here awhile

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    Thank you sir


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  2. cyberdos

    cyberdos Easy Bonus Loop

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    This is the single biggest misconception which continues to be regurgitated and is simply no true.

    Go read any of the many dedicated phone as gps threads in the navigation forum.
  3. cyberdos

    cyberdos Easy Bonus Loop

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    You can download Garmin maps onto your phone. from several sources. It will read them even better than your garmin GPS because phones nowadays have 10 x more processing power than your garmin plus bigger better and brighter screens.

    My Bridagier phone has a sapphire screen. It has been thrown off the cradle 10 times and not a single scratch on it. Your puny garmin could not handle a single fall and it was already scratched. Go to your local verizon store with a set of keys. Ask to see a Brigadier phone. Proceed to try and scratch the screen.

    good luck.
  4. CapeMan

    CapeMan Dirt Duffer

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  5. Dolly Sod

    Dolly Sod I want to do right, but not right now

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    I need to get one of those. I've got a connectivity issue and I can't figure out which of the 3 connections is the problem. Every once in awhile I'll loose charging, and when I jiggle everything it comes back. Then in 10 or 15 minutes I lose it again.
  6. DaMonk45

    DaMonk45 I B Da Monk

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    the cure for all electrical issues.

    Jiggle it
    Dolly Sod and Overanalyze like this.
  7. Schmokel

    Schmokel Riding gear saved my life.

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    Not just electrical.
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  8. webmonstro

    webmonstro A Aventura Continua....

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    That's why I eliminated all unnecessary connections and run a hardwired supply using only one connector in total
  9. CapeMan

    CapeMan Dirt Duffer

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    I've never used an I Phone so cannot speak with any knowledge about how well it'll work as a GPS, though other folks seem happy with it.

    Android phones have been my go-to over the past 5+ years and I've used both a Samsung Rugby and a Samsung S5 Active -- both of these phones are ruggedized and, nominally at least, waterproof (port doors gotta be secure). They've both been ejected from their mounts on any number of crashes I've had, maybe 5-6 times, and still look and function well. And I reckon I'll solve the ejection problem by using a better mount; I'm now in the process of trying out a Perfect/Big Squeeze (http://www.hondogarage.com/) but have only run it through 2 drops so far with good success.

    I'm now converting over to a Duraforce XD, which cost me $58 on eBay and has a 5.7" screen which is a balm to my cataract-afflicted aged eyes. It meets Mil Std 810G (resists dust, temp, mildew, shock, vibration etc.) and IP68 (survives submergence in 6 ft of water for 30 mins) as long as you keep the "doors" covering the ear piece and USB charging connectors closed. It's a tank of a phone and it even has external charging points so you can put it in a powered mount to keep the battery charged without having to open the USB plug port which would compromise its waterproof/810G status.

    There are any number of other ruggedized cell phones with similar capabilities. Look around.

    And if you don't find the written text convincing and need something a bit more visceral, take a quick look at this post: http://advrider.com/index.php?threa...phones-my-guide.1206076/page-12#post-32333529 (thanks @cyberdos !)

    As for maps, OSM maps are pretty danged good but if you use a cell-phone nav app, many will also allow you to download and save USGS topo maps or Caltopo maps (Want some map details? I gotcher map details right here!). You'll need to be a little selective but you can even download satellite photos of an area you ride for future reference when out in the boonies and away from cell coverage.

    To the OP: There are cogent arguments for both cell-phones-as-GPS and for dedicated GPS units. The biggest difference, in my view, is that the cell phone has a lot more capabilities, power, and options and it can be a bit of a slog finding your way through all the settings that come with this power. You can use a dedicated GPS almost out of the box so if you are intimidated by techno-wizardry, a plain vanilla solution might be your best, albeit expensive, choice. Not afraid to spend a little time climbing the learning curve in search of more power and lower cost - a killer combo by the way - look harder at the cell-phone-as-gps.

    No matter what, you'll be wanting some real facts and to get them, go ask those with direct, relevant experience. Those threads I listed earlier would make a good place to start.
    cyberdos likes this.
  10. Dolly Sod

    Dolly Sod I want to do right, but not right now

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    What supply are you using?
  11. webmonstro

    webmonstro A Aventura Continua....

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  12. webmonstro

    webmonstro A Aventura Continua....

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    Like this but with 90° degree micro USB
  13. webmonstro

    webmonstro A Aventura Continua....

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    Or with pogo pins for the casio commando
  14. Schmokel

    Schmokel Riding gear saved my life.

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  15. webmonstro

    webmonstro A Aventura Continua....

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    I have two and both work fine . I will check what vendor it was. But have one of them for 3 or 4 years and working fine
  16. CapeMan

    CapeMan Dirt Duffer

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    That looks like a nice unit!

    BTW, I've had several 12V -> 5V USB chargers crap out on me. I took to 'em with a hammer so I might get a better look at the circuit board -- and found a common failure mode. I've also examined several other circuit boards and found the very same potential point of failure.

    It seems that it's fairly common to include a "toroidal choke" in these charging circuits. This choke looks kinda like a very small doughnut (mmmm ... doughnuts!) that's been wrapped with wire and the wire ends are then soldered onto the board. (I don't wanna risk offending the copyright rules here so I won't post a picture grabbed at random from a google search; if you wanna picture, google will gladly help out.)

    The problem is with how these chokes are mounted to the circuit board. Good practice would be to set them in silastic or other mounting material or even a base of some kind. The cheap stuff I buy don't do that, they just solder the wires on and leave it at that so the choke is just hanging out in the air, unsupported. And that's OK until you start riding a bunch of washboard or rock garden trails or whooping it up in the gravel washes. When you start doing that, the choke will shake and vibrate until one of the wires fatigues and breaks, then no more chargey!

    The preventative fix is easy -- if you can get to the circuit board. Get at the circuit board, find the choke and dribble a little hot-melt glue between the base of the choke and the circuit board and you're good to go. Better support = no shaking/vibration = no fatigue breaks = reliable charging.

    When buying a charger, see if you can see a way to open the housing, like a screw or two, so you can add some support for the choke. Alternatively, look close to see if the circuit board has been "potted", i.e. covered with a resin mastic like a black epoxy, which'll really do the trick. The unit above looks to me like it's been potted.
  17. webmonstro

    webmonstro A Aventura Continua....

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    Before I found these I also used normal cheap chargers that failed because of that , and some happend to the big capacitors used , I solved it by filling the whole thing with a glue gun and soldering wires for input and output . Not pretty but works good and makes them waterproof and vibration proof .
    gefr and Dolly Sod like this.
  18. bross

    bross Where we riding to?

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  19. CapeMan

    CapeMan Dirt Duffer

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  20. Desce

    Desce Finished Pig

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    Yup.

    Used that same one for years.