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About to pull the trigger on the New Garmin 78

Discussion in 'GPS 101 - Which GPS For Me' started by Teaksmith, Jul 27, 2010.

  1. Teaksmith

    Teaksmith Adventurer

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    I was going to order a Garmin GPSmap 60CX this week, but now I'm leaning towards the new GPSmap 78. The 78 is designed to be a marine GPS and portable chartplotter, which is partly why I want it as I also will be using it for sailing and sea kayaking. I'll probably get the base model without the built in charts and then add the G2 blue charts as needed.

    I'm posting this here because I also want a unit I can run on my KLR with City Navigator and custom topo maps from sites like file depot, etc., as well as custom tracks. From my reading up on this unit, it appears it can do everything the 60CX can do in this regard. Anyone see any reason why it would be a worse choice than the 60CX? Oh, and on the RAM mounts website, there is a new handlebar mount available now for the 78, so that won't be an issue.
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  2. Albie

    Albie Kool Aid poisoner

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    IMO it's a better choice. No external antenna to break.
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  3. Countdown

    Countdown Long timer

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    The 60 and 76 were all identical in function, only the packaging was different. I hope the 62 & 78 follow suit.

    For bikes it was just personal choice but for marine, there is only one choice.
    #3
  4. tandttravis

    tandttravis n00b

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    I bought the 78s about 5 weeks ago, and have been very impressed with it. Great battery life, and Ram is releasing the cradle for it sometime in mid August.
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  5. JimC

    JimC Long timer

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    I purchased a 78S as well and I believe Garmin has finally produced a GPS that I can live with as a replacement for my old 76Cx. I prefer the old menu interface of the 76 but this is probably just an old habit. The 78 looks like the real deal.

    I used it my trip to the Redmond BMW National, which included about 600 miles of off pavement riding and even some bushwhacking. The GPS did everything I had hoped for and seems as rugged as old 76. With the new track capabilities (200 saved tracks) it should be an able replacement for the 76.

    Likes - Great battery life, 10-14 hours of continuous use, great screen, no need for backlighting about 90% of the time. almost all the functionality of the old 76Cx.

    Dislikes - There are still some bugs in the software relating to tracks, nothing serious and I'm sure Garmin will have fixes out shortly. Map display is not as nice as the Oregon/Colorado but an improvement over the 60/76/Etrex

    Jim in Sacramento
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  6. Countdown

    Countdown Long timer

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    What Track bugs?

    More about the screen?

    Does it have round power plug or just USB like 62?
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  7. Adrian V

    Adrian V Long timer

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    +1 on the external power plug!

    I'm wondering about getting a 78 series, but the deal breaker for me would be if the external power plug (into the GPS) is crap - ie not robust. What's the new plug like and how does it compare to the old 60 series round plugs?

    Thanks,

    Adrian
    #7
  8. markjenn

    markjenn Long timer

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    FYI, the new 78 is to the old 76 as the new 62 is to the 60. So if you want the 78's functionality, but in a 60-series body, you can get it in one of the 62's.

    I'm not familiar with the "marine" features of the 70-series, but I do know that I don't want keys above the display.

    I'm going to take a hard look at the 62 when they become more widely available, but the 60Cx I have has been almost the perfect GPS from a feature standpoint for me and I haven't wanted anything more other than more CPU speed and a brighter display. I'm waiting to see if they made any improvements in this regard.

    - Mark
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  9. Teaksmith

    Teaksmith Adventurer

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    Since starting this thread, I changed my mind and ordered a 60Cx instead. It has all the features I need, on the road and even for marine use. With a single Blue Chart G2 card that covers all the U.S. coastal waters, I can add the nautical charts for $160, and it has the essential anchor drag and proximity alarms. I like the ergonomics of the 60 series better than the 76.
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  10. Albie

    Albie Kool Aid poisoner

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    Can you expand on that? because as far as viewability, the 76 I have blows away the Oregon I had. In some light conditions I couldn't even see the map on the Oregon, which is never the case with the 76.
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  11. CHIA

    CHIA Ya, right

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  12. Countdown

    Countdown Long timer

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    You should try both 60 & 76 switches with gloves on. The 76 buttons are taller and a little further apart and are much easier to push with gloves on. I have ridden hundereds of miles with both and only use a 60 when I have no choice.

    When holding in your hand with your fingers under it and pushing buttons with your thumbs the 76 has swithces at the CG.

    On the bike the buttons are easy to push with your index finger. Some people think their had blockes the screen but I bet none of them have ridden with both. I hope you are not pushing buttons and looking at the screen while riding? You push then look down to see new screen or zoom level.
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  13. markjenn

    markjenn Long timer

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    I've used both - I detest the 76's button placement. To each his own.

    - Mark
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  14. JimC

    JimC Long timer

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    I've owned both and detested the 60's buttons so much I sold it and bought another 76. To each is own. I was convinced that the only people who would choose the 60 button setup were people who never tried the 76, you proved me wrong :D

    Jim in Sacramento
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  15. Albie

    Albie Kool Aid poisoner

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    I could care less bout the button placement. That stupid antenna sticking out of the 60 is what I detest.
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  16. Countdown

    Countdown Long timer

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    The stupid external antenna is not a problem until the unit pops out of the crappy RAM mount and lands on the ground antenna first. Then the external antenna is no longer any problem.
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  17. Albie

    Albie Kool Aid poisoner

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    Which is one less thing to worry about with the 76. :dunno
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  18. JimC

    JimC Long timer

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    The 78 has some software bugs in it but I'm sure that Garmin will address. There is nothing major I can remember, but there were a couple of instances on my trip where the GPS would hiccup while routing or working with tracks. The only one I found annoying was I couldn't get a track to stop displaying. I eventually had to delete the track and restart the GPS to get it to stop displaying. Garmin is on their 3rd release of software for the 78 and if they are true to form they will address all bugs in a short period of time.

    The screen is excellent. I ran the unit without external power for 6 days so I had all back lighting shut off while riding to conserve the batteries. I could always find an angle with the Ram mount that made the screen completely readable during the day and I was getting 12-14 hours of use from of a set of eneloop batteries. The screen is at least as good as the old 76Cx and maybe better.

    BUT THE ICING ON THE CAKE is the return of the old 76/60 round 4 prong 12v power cord. I couldn't find any of my old 76 power cords which is why I ran batteries for my Redmond trip. There is no virtually no mention about this plug in the manual so I had no idea if it would work. Today I stopped by Sportsman's Warehouse and picked up one of the old 4 prong power cords. I went out to my truck, plugged the cable into my cigarette lighter and connected it to the GPS. It booted right up with the back light on full and the power symbol showing that lovely little power cord. Hallelujah the Phoenix has risen from the ashes! Why they left this plug off the 62 is a mystery to me, this should be the reason why the 78 will outsell the 62 model 50 to 1 in the dual sport community.

    The 78 is the new king of the hill as far as I am concerned, a worthy successor to the 76Cx.

    Jim in Sacramento
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  19. Countdown

    Countdown Long timer

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    What is a hiccup?

    If you opened details of a track was there the little box to check/uncheck to display track on map? The idiots at Mapsource deleted the toggle even though it is always in the track file.

    Without the "show on map" control, the 78 would be king of the crapper.
    #19
  20. Adrian V

    Adrian V Long timer

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    Countdown - can you elaborate? Jim is the show on map control there?

    Thanks,

    Adrian
    #20