Best budget ON/OFF-road GPS?

Discussion in 'GPS 101 - Which GPS For Me' started by Viperject, Jan 15, 2011.

  1. Viperject

    Viperject finally dirty

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2011
    Oddometer:
    69
    Location:
    JOH-JAH!
    I don't know what separates one GPS model from another; never used one. I don't know why some cost $100 new and others cost upwards of $1,000. I thought they all did the same thing.

    Here is what I want:

    - something that can direct me on the street and through the trails, taking me from Point A to Point B, with points of interest and fuel stops in between

    - something that can accept routes available online from other travelers

    - something that isn't going to break its first season out

    It can be motorcycle-specific (weatherproof) or just something I mount in its own sealed case. I'm hungry for suggestions because I have NO IDEA where to start.

    I would like to buy new if possible, but I'm not spending big bucks until I'm convinced the spendier units are really that much more effective than the cheaper models. For example, I've seen some Nuvi models on eBay selling for $100 new, while most of the Zumos are listed for $500+.
    #1
  2. Trailryder42

    Trailryder42 Long timer

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2006
    Oddometer:
    1,484
    Location:
    Amarillo, Texas
    As a newbie to GPS, you have lots of reading to do to understand the whys and why nots.

    It's good that you currently have an idea of what capabilities you want your GPS to have. And as a newbie, for the type riding you say you want to do, there will be capabilities you'll want that you may not currently be aware of.

    Then you'll need to learn what units have those capabilities and which don't.

    Some types of units originally meant for one type of navigation lend themselves well to the on/off road motorcycle world, others don't.

    Examples that do are the Garmin GPSMap 60 series and some of the marine units like the 376C.

    Those that don't are the Nuvi. Those are car GPSes that don't have the route and track handling and importing capabilities that the others have.

    Spend some time reading the stickies at the top of the forum.
    #2
  3. Viperject

    Viperject finally dirty

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2011
    Oddometer:
    69
    Location:
    JOH-JAH!
    I need to simplify this process; the more I read, the more overwhelmed with information I become.

    Judging from your reply, can I assume the Garmin 60CSx is a pretty safe bet? I've read of several riders who prefer it over the other 60-series models. It doesn't have the largest display, but it's weatherproof and easily mounted to the motorcycle. Can it provide the off-road routes I'm looking for? Can it accept maps posted by other riders?

    What are the limitations of the 60-series units?

    I've found some CSx units online (new-in-the-box) for less than $200.
    #3
  4. Countdown

    Countdown Long timer

    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2003
    Oddometer:
    6,933
    Location:
    Carson City/Ridgecrest
    What kind of bike are you putting it on?
    69/76 work great on dirt bikes but small screen does not do well for street use. They have full "Track" features which big screen units don't.

    Most people don't need "S" for $20 more.

    GPS does not Provide "Off-road routes". Do you mean will it "autoroute" or do you mean see small roads and trails on map?

    Riders don't post maps, they post "Tracks" and "Routes", 60/76 will accept both.
    #4
  5. 250senuf

    250senuf Long timer

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2008
    Oddometer:
    4,036
    Location:
    Nelson area, Kootenai, BC, Canada
    Take a closer look at the GPSmap76xxx if you're considering the 60. The RAM cradle for the 76 holds the unit much better. And the antennae on the 76 is internal, unlike the sticky-out one of the 60 which has been known to get torn off. 76 also floats (if that should matter). Other than that they are the same guts. 76CSx as low as 237$ on eBay.
    #5
  6. Countdown

    Countdown Long timer

    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2003
    Oddometer:
    6,933
    Location:
    Carson City/Ridgecrest
    Forgot to mention buttons are easier to use with gloves on on 76.

    Just bought 76Cx from West Marine for $180.
    #6
  7. Gravetter

    Gravetter Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2010
    Oddometer:
    312
    Location:
    S.Indiana

    How did you track down that deal?
    #7
  8. Countdown

    Countdown Long timer

    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2003
    Oddometer:
    6,933
    Location:
    Carson City/Ridgecrest
    WestMarine.com then Search "76Cx"
    #8
  9. markbvt

    markbvt Long timer

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2007
    Oddometer:
    4,206
    Location:
    Georgia, Vermont (that's one town, not two states)
    Keep in mind that the GPSMap 60 and 76 series units are now discontinued. You can find good deals on leftover new ones, but they're years-old units with an old operating system and a low-res screen.

    In my opinion it would be worth looking at the updated versions of these, the GPSMap 62 and 78 series, if you want a GPS that uses buttons for input, or the Oregon series if you want one with a touch screen (the other advantage of the Oregon is a higher-resolution screen).

    The Oregon 450 has been on sale quite a bit lately for as low as $250, FYI.

    --mark
    #9
  10. Countdown

    Countdown Long timer

    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2003
    Oddometer:
    6,933
    Location:
    Carson City/Ridgecrest
    Many would not agree.

    60/76Cx has best satalite chip available, lots of map memory (4 gig). The problem with the new 62/78 is that they don't have the "Old operating system" (aka firmware) and have several issues with their "Track" features, response to Loss of external power (78 only), and worst of all no external 12V input (62 only).
    #10
  11. Trailryder42

    Trailryder42 Long timer

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2006
    Oddometer:
    1,484
    Location:
    Amarillo, Texas
    To simplify the responses. Yes, that would be a pretty safe bet.

    #11
  12. Viperject

    Viperject finally dirty

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2011
    Oddometer:
    69
    Location:
    JOH-JAH!
    Just searched their site and it's listed for $350.

    Screen looks even smaller than the 60-series, too.
    #12
  13. markbvt

    markbvt Long timer

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2007
    Oddometer:
    4,206
    Location:
    Georgia, Vermont (that's one town, not two states)
    The Oregon with current firmware has been tested and shown to match the 60CSx in accuracy. And map memory is essentially infinite through the use of MicroSD cards.

    Not a problem with the Oregon, except for the 12V power input, but the 5V input works fine, and let's face it, Garmin seems to be phasing out the 12V input on their newer models...

    --mark
    #13
  14. Countdown

    Countdown Long timer

    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2003
    Oddometer:
    6,933
    Location:
    Carson City/Ridgecrest
    It keeps going on/off sale keep watching. Also check Amazon every day.
    #14
  15. eakins

    eakins Butler Maps

    Joined:
    May 29, 2002
    Oddometer:
    37,409
    Location:
    Fort Collins, Colorado
    i have a 60csx and would buy another. workls great in the car autorouting, on the bike offroad and hiking/mtb.

    i like the 60 over the 76 because the buttons are on the bottom (this is where i'd expect controls) and the unit is physically smaller for handheld use.
    i used some gorilla duct tape inside my ram mount to tighten it up and it's never come off but i do loop the hand loop around my clutch cable first then mount it.

    #15
  16. eakins

    eakins Butler Maps

    Joined:
    May 29, 2002
    Oddometer:
    37,409
    Location:
    Fort Collins, Colorado
    you must use some thick gloves because i can use the 60s buttons just fine and when i'm using them my hand is not cover the screen like i found playing w/ a 76. either way both the same and great units.

    the 60 price has settled at $200 and i doubt it will go much below and then stock will be gone.
    http://www.amazon.com/Garmin-GPS-60CSx-Handheld-Navigator/dp/B000CSOXTO
    #16
  17. Wojo

    Wojo Friggin New Guy

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2011
    Oddometer:
    10
    Location:
    Pissuck County, NJ
    I've been on the fence about buying a unit and this thread has helped a lot. West Marine didn't have any big sales going on, but Amazon had the 75csx for $229.99. Not bad IMHO. Now, what mount and power supply do I go with?
    #17
  18. Countdown

    Countdown Long timer

    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2003
    Oddometer:
    6,933
    Location:
    Carson City/Ridgecrest
    Definitly not a bad price. I don't like "S" (valueless stuff that can fail) and it costs about $20.

    No power supply needed with 60/76 (show stoper for 62) just hard wire kit to run off bike battery.

    RAM mount is all that is necessary.

    But you will need maps. City Nav Disk (not chip) gets it done. Other options out there.

    All form http://www.cycoactive.com/
    #18
  19. Wojo

    Wojo Friggin New Guy

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2011
    Oddometer:
    10
    Location:
    Pissuck County, NJ
    The cx version without the s option was more money on Amazon...go figure.
    #19
  20. Countdown

    Countdown Long timer

    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2003
    Oddometer:
    6,933
    Location:
    Carson City/Ridgecrest
    Probably ans supply/demand thing too many unsold "S" on the shelf.
    #20