Zumo 660 or Montana?

Discussion in 'GPS 101 - Which GPS For Me' started by kdennan, Jan 26, 2013.

  1. kdennan

    kdennan Been here awhile

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    I first want to apologize for asking something that has already been asked, but I just can't seem to find the answers I am looking for. I think it must be because I suck at searching and get bored trying to read every one of the thousands of pages on this.
    I live in the north east U.S. (Vermont) and want to trip around here and northern new england for startes and then on to Canada, etc.
    I've had a Garmin Edge 605 for years for my bicycles and it has been great. I have it on my little Sertao now and it has been able to get me where I want to go but it has a tiny screen and limited functions.
    I don't want the best there is. Actually, maybe I do:) I want to be able to create a route (simply) on my laptop and EASILY send it to my device and have it guide me turn-by-turn and with voice commands in my helmet to where I am going. And really, that's the most important thing. I don't need a camera or tunes as I think the latter is dangerous. But if the Montana is the best I don't mind ignoring those features.
    Burly is a bonus as I plan to keep it as long as I have my beemer. When I get a new bike I'll get a new unit.
    I'm going to get the above the speedo adapter and the Touratech mount too.
    Anything else?
    Thanks for any advice you can lend
    #1
  2. kdennan

    kdennan Been here awhile

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    One other thing to consider. I don't have any interest in leaving paved and dirt roads with occasional jeep trails. I have my Edge 605 for that on my woodsbike, which is plated. I also want to avoid highways when possible.
    I have been searching and reading all day and it sounds like the Montana is the new favorite. Especially among the off-road crowd.
    I do plan on perhaps visiting cities in Canada like Quebec, so a solid performer on city streets is good too.
    #2
  3. Emoto

    Emoto Sure, why not?

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    The 660 screen is larger. The Montana is incredibly configurable.
    #3
  4. BK

    BK Electron herder

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    I have the 660 and I like it a lot. I think it would be the better choice for road use. My only gripe is that the Basecamp software is not very useable, I liked mapsource a lot better.
    #4
  5. kdennan

    kdennan Been here awhile

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    Can you still use Mapsource? I'm comfortable with it and I think I actually have it.
    I'm leaning towards the Zumo
    Someone convince me otherwise
    #5
  6. Emmbeedee

    Emmbeedee Procrastinators

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    The Montana can be configured to be a Zumo, but the Zumo will never be a Montana no matter how hard you try. Sure, the Montana does not have Bluetooth and a Media Player but with the right mount you can add a Bluetooth dongle, and you said you didn't want a Media Player.

    I created the thread listed in my signature to try to make the Montana easier to understand. There's also a Montana Wiki available, to give you the encyclopedic view of it, but my thread was an attempt to give a user's perspective in a nutshell.
    #6
  7. Hikertrash

    Hikertrash Long timer

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    My Montana does not give voice command turn by turn through Bluetooth. IIRC, that will only work with an external speaker when mounting in a vehicle.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    #7
  8. Emmbeedee

    Emmbeedee Procrastinators

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    Using the $33 Garmin Rugged Mount, you can add a Bluetooth dongle to the audio out cable, or you could hook the audio out directly to a helmet intercom, for that matter and forget about BT.

    Even if you don't plan to mount the Montana, you can add an earbud to the audio out connector on the gps itself to get spoken directions.
    #8
  9. kdennan

    kdennan Been here awhile

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    Hmmmm.
    I don't know. I just don't need all the fancy farkles of the Montana. Just want easy voice directions
    #9
  10. Emmbeedee

    Emmbeedee Procrastinators

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    It's your choice, but they're not "fancy farkles". They're options.

    One of the ones I like the most is the Landscape or Portrait mode feature.

    [​IMG] [​IMG]
    #10
  11. Gypsy II

    Gypsy II NVR2OLD

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    I have the Montana 650t and I can't say enough positive things about it. It will do all the things in your criteria if you buy the rugged mount as previously stated. Once you set up the profile you want to use it becomes user friendly even though it is a highly sophisticated unit. The touch screen works well with medium weight winter gloves. One of the features I really like is that when navigating your next turn is noted at the top of the screen. As you get closer to the turn it automatically zooms in for more detail and then returns to the previous zoom level one you execute the turn. The battery life is very good 12-16 hrs which makes it good for bicycling or hiking as well. Base camp is not as intuitive as other software but I'm getting used to it. I have a DeLorme PN-40 as well but I don't think I'll ever use it again after purchasing the Montana 650.
    #11
  12. kdennan

    kdennan Been here awhile

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    Ok, thanks
    I still have to mull it over. I think I'll talk with Touratech and Garmin on Monday. I hope Garmin can lend an unbiased opinion.
    #12
  13. Emmbeedee

    Emmbeedee Procrastinators

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    Don't bother with Touratech unless you really must get rid of loads of dosh. Their mount requires the Garmin Rugged Mount anyway, if you buy it. And don't expect unbiased opinions from Garmin. They're as enthusiastic about it as we are.
    #13
  14. Albie

    Albie Kool Aid poisoner

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    The only real problem I have with the Montana is that you can't navigate long complex routes. They hamstring it by only allowing a route to have 50 via points. For that very reason I have hung on to my Zumo and use it on my street bikes, while I use the Montana on my DS bikes.
    #14
  15. kdennan

    kdennan Been here awhile

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    Like I said. I am on an adventure bike doing back roads. No DS woods or trails. I have a plated Husaberg that shreds the heavy little beemer in the weeds.
    I am going thru my BMW dealer to get Touratech stuff. It seems to me to be the best quality.
    I'll skip talking to Garmin other than asking them if they are going to drop the zumo line.
    I'm pretty sure that the zumo will take me to Nova Scotia and deep into Canada without issue
    #15
  16. Albie

    Albie Kool Aid poisoner

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    If I had to guess, I'd say the 660/665 is probably at the end of it's lifespan. I expect a new high end ZUMO shortly, and I have a feeling that it will be significantly higher in price then the 66X's since the newest ZUMO the 350 is almost the same price as the 660.
    #16
  17. kdennan

    kdennan Been here awhile

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    Thanks Albie.
    I'm sure the Montana is nice, but I'm going with the Zumo
    #17
  18. Emoto

    Emoto Sure, why not?

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    Kdennan, my advice is (assuming you made the decision to buy a Zumo) to make sure you buy one with "LM" appended to the name, e.g., 660LM. This is a "lifetime" maps update bundle, so that you will get at least a few years of map updates.

    Frankly, I do not think you would be unhappy with either a Zumo or a Montana, because they are both excellent units.
    #18
  19. kdennan

    kdennan Been here awhile

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    Thank you
    Definitely getting the 660LM
    What is the best headset? I have an Airoh adventure helmet
    dirtbike helmet with visor
    #19
  20. Emoto

    Emoto Sure, why not?

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    No idea. Your headset question might be worthy of starting a new topic. I am sure that people use lots of different ones.

    The setup I use is not one I would necessarily recommend, since it kind of grew organically over time into a frankenstein kind of deal, but it works for me. I use a Chatterbox headset leftover from when my (now ex) girlfriend rode as a passenger all the time and we wanted to have an intercom. It has thin flat speakers velcroed into the helmet ear pockets, and a small mic on the chin bar. This is basically the same without the mic, but with a small headphone type plug instead of the Chatterbox plug on mine that I run out of a Chatterbox GMRS X-1 (intercom and radio): http://www.jcmotors.com/p-2543-chatterbox-stereo-helmet-headset-speakers.aspx#.UQUw2VE2TK0

    I find that these speakers can be driven hard enough to be heard through the foam earplugs that I wear when riding. I am also piping output from an iPod and a V-1 radar detector through the GMRS X-1 and into them.

    I myself prefer the thin flat speakers over having to dick around with putting ear buds into my ears all the time. YMMV.
    #20