GPSMAP 640 released--276C et al replacement.

Discussion in 'Mapping & Navigation' started by v8dave, Jan 8, 2009.

  1. Gerg

    Gerg Cupcake

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    Waiting has cost me money.

    378 and 478 both had $200 factory rebates which ended on 12/31. Damn... I love my 276C but want NEXRAD. Garmin has already dropped the 376 and I'd bet the 378/478 can't be far behind. Can those displays be THAT expensive?

    I guess I get to wait some more.

    Gerg
    #21
  2. markbvt

    markbvt Long timer

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    For what it's worth, there still seem to be plenty of 376C's available from online retailers... for now. Prices are quite good too. Amazon had them last week for $400.

    I'll be curious to hear what 620/640 owners have to say about the units, but I too can't understand why Garmin would handicap them with less functionality than the earlier units had.

    I just bought an Oregon 300 and installed City Navigator maps on it; I think it'll work out well for ADV purposes, but of course it lacks the awesome hi-res display of the 620/640 or even *76 series. (On the other hand, it's a lot more compact...)

    While I was researching the Oregon, I began looking seriously at the 376C, but the proprietary memory cards it uses were a dealbreaker for me. No way am I paying Garmin $100 or thereabouts for a 512MB card when a 2GB microSD card costs $7.

    --mark
    #22
  3. Ozz

    Ozz Been here awhile

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    + 1

    That's the main reason I bought the Zumo 550 instead of the GPSmap 478.

    I was hoping that Garmin would come out with an improved 478, so I thought this 640 would be my solution. But with zero tracks on LAND mode, it just doesn't make sense for me. I'm hoping that by "zero" stored tracks on LAND mode, they mean zero tracks on the GPS's internal memory and perhaps tracks and routes can be stored on the SD card.We'll have to wait and see.
    #23
  4. 9Dave

    9Dave Bazinga!

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    Not necessarily.

    I own a 376c and a 60csx. While the 376 is almost 3 years old, I bought the 60csx specifically for what it could do.

    While the Garmin cards are a slight negative, all the other features of the x76 series and 478 work so much better for off road, and back road adventuring that the Zumo and new 6 series pale in comparison, IMHO.

    I have the ability, but certainly not the desire to "upgrade". What I have are the best tools for the job at this point.
    #24
  5. Gros Buck

    Gros Buck Beef = Packed Vegetables

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    It's because of the touch screen ...

    Paul Jr
    #25
  6. BigDogAdventures

    BigDogAdventures Fart Letter

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    I've got 3 276's----bought a couple used really cheap just in case I smash one. That will take me till I die. As all the rest are just waterproof car, soccer mom GPS's. ------for me---not you----just for me.
    #26
  7. emelgee

    emelgee Been here awhile

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    They've just used the same screen as some of the Nuvi car units - economy of scale I guess. It's the main thing that held me back from getting one as well - plus you lose quite a bit of the map area with the permanent display icons.
    #27
  8. mcnut

    mcnut Long timer

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    and


    I think BigDog and Dave have reinforced my point. Garmin has not offered customers a reason to upgrade.

    Bruce
    #28
  9. Jeff@TheQuadShop

    Jeff@TheQuadShop TAT survivor

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    :stupid
    #29
  10. R-dubb

    R-dubb Dubbious Adventurer

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    Me too!

    I saw the 620/640 at CES a few days ago. It is really nice. The touchscreen works perfectly. The size is perfect. The rep assured me it will do EVERYTHING the 276 does and more. I get back, look at the specs, and NO.......they fucked up on the tracking, again. Why, oh why is it so hard to respect the fact that off-road dual sporters like tracks. It's not a hard concept to understand.

    One more thing, a new Nuvi model sports satellite maps on screen. Now that is cool. I asked him if the 640 with xm weather does that. He says, "NO......" I say, "That's because boaters don't care about storm clouds!!" These guys are falling to sleep, smoking crack, or somthing.

    Not to mention,,,,, Garmin's stock price has absolutely been trashed because Wall Street has decided that consumers prefer GPS on their cell phones, and it's only a matter of time. When that happens, I bet we get our friggin' track logs.
    #30
  11. Gunslinger1

    Gunslinger1 GIVE'R

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    As all the rest are just waterproof car, soccer mom GPS's


    :rofl :rofl :rofl
    #31
  12. BigDogAdventures

    BigDogAdventures Fart Letter

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    I swore I'd never make a comment on what gps to use ever again as I just don't give a ratsa** what anybody else uses.

    But it's nice to get some backup----Mr. Breese---with a capital M
    They don't want to know what I really think do they :D
    #32
  13. fotobo

    fotobo KTM rider

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    Having to keep using my 276 is definitely not a problem for me.
    #33
  14. NorthernTraveler

    NorthernTraveler Long time Adventurer

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    After reading Big Dog and Gaspipe's write up of the western TAT in '06 I had to do it!

    One of the pieces of gear I picked up to accomplish this goal was a Garmin 276c.

    I guessed my old Garmin eMap just wasn't going to make it....

    Spent the time to map it out, loaded it up and away I went. Got'er done!

    That 276 served me well.... was so far out there at times I would have been in serious trouble if it went down - which it NEVER did!

    TAT solo, the western end in Sept and Oct... through the early snow.

    Had to buy a spare this past year....

    Now I've reworked my routes and the 276c is the ONLY Garmin that will let me put the whole TAT in at once.... and the CDR at the same time!

    So, definitely a +1 on the Garmin 276c! Thanks Big Dog! :ricky
    #34
  15. AugustFalcon

    AugustFalcon Long timer

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    Why was that?

    I have a 276C, getting ready to do the TAT and thought about upgrading to a 478 since it appears to offer more. So, I am now wondering, based on your comment, if I shouldn't bother.

    Which map products did you use for you TAT and CDR plots?
    #35
  16. BigDogAdventures

    BigDogAdventures Fart Letter

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    In terms of map loading, waypoint, track log and route functions the 478 is the same---------you will gain no navigational functions.

    The 478 just has additional non navigational stuff.

    I always load 3 different mapsets in my 276 and turn on the one that suits the situation. I load topo-----the very old Roads and Recreations---and then an autorouting mapset too (there are many versions of that out there).
    #36
  17. Jeff@TheQuadShop

    Jeff@TheQuadShop TAT survivor

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    The 276c, 376c and 478 are basically the same units with some minor differences like the 376c XM radio/WX weather and the 478 adding CN loaded into its memory. These 3 are considered to be the best GPS's available for us Adventure riders! :clap
    #37
  18. NorthernTraveler

    NorthernTraveler Long time Adventurer

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    I just looked and my complete TAT route set (one route per day) has 2389 waypoints (every turn on Sam's roll charts are in there along with gas and motel points) using 25 routes (I have some of the optional routes too).

    Loading Road and Rec, Topo 2008 and Metroguide NA v8 (no unlock codes) it takes right around 123MB with 283 maps. Haven't had a chance to load it into the GPS to make sure it handles that many map segments - I'm in the sandbox and the GPS is at home - but I think it will.

    This is just the TAT.

    I also have Big Dog's CDR route (thanks Mark!) that I've reworked slightly and that takes 290 waypoints, 5 routes and 138 maps totaling 73MB. But there is some overlap with the maps for the TAT, so it should all fit OK.

    One thing that I've run in to... the 276 will allow 300 waypoints per route. Most other GPS's won't. I also have a 172c that I'm going to play with... but it only allows 250 waypoints per route... but has a bigger screen, lower res and no battery.

    I wish somebody had a spreadsheet for GPSs showing # of routes, # waypoints per route, # tracks, # waypoints per track, total # points for the main tracklog, max # of maps, screen size, screen res.

    Would be handy to compare them......
    #38
  19. BigDogAdventures

    BigDogAdventures Fart Letter

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    All maps you load---go into the data card only on the 276---not in the gps itself.

    So you can load as many MB's as your data card is big.

    Nothing else goes to the data card----only maps.

    And if you didn't know--the 276 holds 3,000 waypoints--these are stored in the unit---and cannot be stored on the data card.

    You might be able to upgrade (free) the unit software and make routes hold more route waypoints.

    Hope i'm not telling you stuff you already know.
    #39
  20. NorthernTraveler

    NorthernTraveler Long time Adventurer

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    Yeah, on the 276 the maps go into the data card, but there still is a limit on the number of map segments - so there is really two limits - MB size and number of map segments.

    That is one of the problems of Road and Rec - it has quite small map segments, which is good for older GPS's with small memory, but to cover a larger area it takes LOTS of map segments.

    If you look at Metroguide or even Topo 2008, the area covered in a map segment is much larger - so it takes fewer segments to cover the same amount of area.

    Yep, the 276c allows 3000 user defined waypoints... with the current GPS system software for the 276 (5.30) and the current good version of Mapsourse (6.13.7, not the latest - 6.14.1 is buggy) when you create a route you can have 'route' waypoints (otherwise known as via's) that don't count against your user defined waypoints. These via's do count against the number of waypoints in a route however.

    For example, if you define two waypoints, one at the start of a route and one at the end, then using the routing tool connect them together using say 100 vias, you have only used 2 waypoints out of your 3000 waypoints, and you have used one route out of your 50.

    The 60 and 76 series only allows something like 1000 user defined waypoints.... way too few for what I want to do.

    Another problem with some of the other models.... some only allow 50 waypoints in a route. Who are they trying to kid? Sheesh!

    On the 276 all waypoints, routes, tracks and tracklogs go into internal memory while only maps go onto the data cards. On some of the newer GPSs they allow the tracks and tracklog to go onto the data card, everything being stored the same as the 276.

    I think what I'm going to do when I go to do some really extended wandering is to load several data cards up to cover vast areas for maps, then put waypoints, routes and whatever else else I need on a thumb drive along with EasyGPS. Just swap data cards to have the maps I need for an area, then upload new routes and waypoints as needed off the thumb drive using a public computer. No need to carry a laptop that way, and you can download back to the thumb drive if you want to save your tracks.
    #40