Why doesn't Garmin give us the ability to Navigate a Track?

Discussion in 'Mapping & Navigation' started by DabsAlot, Jul 8, 2013.

  1. Bill Murray

    Bill Murray Been here awhile

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    Wilmington, NC
    Albie, I want to offer another opinion regarding the Montana. This comes from a former owner of a Zumo 550, GPS V, and GPS III.

    I really like my Montana 650. It has been a SIGNIFICANT improvement over my prior Garmin GPSrs. Is it perfect? No. I have yet to see the perfect GPS, but the Montana has provided most of the functionality I want at a reasonable price. And by most of the functionality wanted, I mean routing AND tracks (either together or independently), a large waypoint library, POI capability, a very viewable screen, photo capability (which I do not use very often, but like knowing that I always have a camera with me), the ability to use AA batteries if needed, fast start-up and map drawing, multiple map set capability, the ability to use large and inexpensive µSD card storage, and more. I especially like the ability to navigate a track using my Montana. It is my now my preferred mode of navigation.

    Would I like to have more than 50 via point limit? Yes, but it's not a deal breaker. If I had a route that needed more than 50 via points, I will convert the route to a track and use it instead. As DRTBYK has pointed out, motorcyclists are a small portion of Garmin's customer base and are likely the few who need a greater than 50 via point feature (and tracks are great work-around for this "shortcoming.")

    The Montana has some shortcomings, but very few, if any of them, are problematic (to me). Do I recommend the Montana to everyone who asks for a GPS suggestion? No, not always. But if they need many of the features offered on the Montana, or if they need a GPS suitable for applications other than just motorcycling (say in their car, and on their boat, and for geocaching, and on their motorcycle), then the Montana is at the top of the list.

    I hold out hope that Garmin will fix a few more of the glitches we have told them about, and perhaps add one or two of the enhancements we have been requesting, but if they do not, I am still a satisfied Montana owner.

    I am not trying to incite an argument -- I only want to say that there are many of us who are satisfied Montana customers. If the Montana does not meet your needs, I hope you are successful finding a GPSr that meets all of your criteria.
    #21
  2. DabsAlot

    DabsAlot Been here awhile

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    I am coming to the Montana from a 60csx and so far I am quite happy with my Montana. I haven't left my 60csx at home yet...as I don't have the seat time to built up faith in the Montana yet like I have with my 60csx. I am just trying to push my GPS usage to the next level by taking advantage of voice/display prompted guidance.....like a Route provides. Being able to easily switch between mapsets is a big advantage over the 60csx for me, as well as the capacity to store those maps. Even bigger was the 10,000 point track limit versus 500. I can only see more capability coming in the future as long as Garmin continues to cater to niche markets such as ours, which I think is what they need to do to succeed in today's GPS market.

    Steve
    #22
  3. Albie

    Albie Kool Aid poisoner

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    LOL, I bought the 478 when they FIRST came out. It was $750 back in '06 which I'm pretty sure isn't $6000 in today's dollars. :lol3

    That chartplotter used both water navigable maps AND City Navigator road maps. It also had the ability to connect an XM receiver to it. Of course back then Garmin was actually trying to offer a unit that could work in more then one environment. It could hold 50 routes with 300 via points per route. It was a bit hamstrung on tracks as it could only handle 700 point tracks except for the active log which would hold 10K. But, it was a very good routing GPS so using tracks to navigate by was senseless.

    Now it had some serious downsides. First and foremost is it was a POS for standing up to any hard riding, I had to have mine replaced 3 times. So I got rid of it because it was so undependable. Second of course was the small memory and having to use Garmin's proprietary memory if you wanted to expand. Another problem was the speed. Those old processors just don't refresh maps like the new ones.

    So it appears the messenger is shooting back with blanks. :rofl
    #23
  4. DRTBYK

    DRTBYK All Things GPS

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    The exaggeration was to make a point. For the day, those old chartplotters were damned expensive. Your $750 at the historical inflation rate would be about $900 today. If I were going to lay out $900, I'd want....everything the days tech had to offer.

    Oh, I shot a .50 BMG from a 20" barrel M107.....:evil
    #24
  5. Albie

    Albie Kool Aid poisoner

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    So instead you laid out $600 for something that doesn't even offer tech from 7 years ago and you're happy. I guess that's OK for some folks. :lol3

    It appears your .50 cal is all shell, and no bullet. :wink:
    #25
  6. DRTBYK

    DRTBYK All Things GPS

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    Well, I paid $518 :D for the best available GPS device on the market. :dunno

    Yeah, I'm okay with that....

    661gr actually.
    #26
  7. Albie

    Albie Kool Aid poisoner

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    I will agree it's the best on the market, but then that just shows you how pitiful the market is. Heck, even I'm OK with it, I just hope someone makes one I'm actually HAPPY with. In the meantime, we have to settle with the Microsoft mentality when it comes to GPS's. :lol3
    #27
  8. advNZer?

    advNZer? Long timer

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    Have you given Garmin your feedback?
    #28
  9. 9Dave

    9Dave Bazinga!

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    Location:
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    Garmin doesn't really care about such a small market segment - or if they do - can't justify the cost.

    I'll keep my 376c til it dies. it cost about a grand (with City Select v6 IIRC):eek1 when I bought it about 7 years ago. With the exception of 1 internal battery replacement, it has worked flawlessly.

    It's not the fastest, smallest, or the prettiest, but it will navigate a track, doesn't recalc my routes til I ask it to, and has nice buttons I can use with my gloves on. I can't load the whole U.S. map at once, but that's OK.

    When it dies, I'll probably replace it with whatever the latest version of the 665 is. I need something that will display a track. Til then, I'll be a Luddite. :thumb
    #29
  10. Albie

    Albie Kool Aid poisoner

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    Time, and time again.
    #30
  11. SKINNY

    SKINNY Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2001
    Oddometer:
    670
    Location:
    West Texas
    I'm with Albie...
    I still have a 276C that:
    Never had un-expected shut-downs
    Never re-calced a route
    Never lost it's screen calibration
    Never had firmware updates that broke more than it fixed.
    I replaced my original 276 with a refurb because the
    case leaked enough to finally coat the back side of the display glass with dust
    other than that, they have been flawless

    I have already replaced my first Montana because of screen calibration issues.
    The new one works OK but:
    I have given up on using the rechargeable battery due to continued shutdowns
    AA lithiums have cured that problem
    My screen will go nuts if it is exposed to direct sunlight for more than a short time
    I hate the touch screen
    The Montana product line is 2 years old and we are still getting bug ridden firmware

    I bought the Montana because it has better memory and processor power than the 276C
    I did not expect to still be fighting hardware and firmware problems 2 years later....
    Garmin has fumbled this model so bad that, if I had an alternative, I would drop Garmin like a bad habit
    #31