GPS

Discussion in 'GPS 101 - Which GPS For Me' started by duffy1298, Feb 3, 2019.

  1. duffy1298

    duffy1298 Adventurer

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    What gps do you run, and would you recommend it? I’m in the market for one any advice is appreciated.
    #1
  2. Vicresendez

    Vicresendez Adventurer

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    Garmin Zumo 660 LM lifetime maps

    IMG_4784.jpg
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  3. JR356

    JR356 Long timer

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  4. STcorndog

    STcorndog No destination

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    396 LMT, highly recommended for the money.
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  5. dddd

    dddd Long timer

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    I do own the zumo 660 LM with a fm traffic receiver (GTM12 if I recall).
    But it`s small flash, small ram, slow cpu... showing age.
    I suspect the zumo 595LM is a compromise (better speed, more recent, but some lost workflows and no fm traffic receiver).
    #5
  6. Daboo

    Daboo Been here awhile

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    I picked up a refurbished Garmin 590LM that I "upgraded" to a 595. I saved a bunch on getting a refurb, and when I received it, I couldn't tell the difference from a new GPS. And it had the full factory warranty as well. I'd look for a refurbished unit, for whatever you get.

    I wanted to get a TomTom Rider. I like the Android app version a lot, and would like to use it as the full-fledged GPS itself. However, it comes only in the 4.3 inch device size. 5 inches is actually a better size for me. I can make selections with my gloves on, and with my aging eyes, I can see just a little bit better. You wouldn't think it would make a difference, but it does. And it isn't so large that it blocks the view of anything.

    Chris
    #6
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  7. advrockrider

    advrockrider Been here awhile

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    Don't bother with a GPS, get an app for your phone. Works better, way easier to learn and use..
    #7
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  8. Daboo

    Daboo Been here awhile

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    Yes and no. Yes, you can get a good GPS app for a smart phone. But it isn't the same.

    Brightness is one limitation. I'd like my Garmin 595LM to be brighter, and it is just adequate. My Samsung Note is one of the brightest screens around...but in bright sunlight, it has problems. Plus, it isn't waterproof. I've dropped my Garmin on the pavement and it still works just fine. I doubt my Samsung would. But the biggest issue would be heat and power consumption. The heat in the summer will shut it down. And when the processor is trying to keep up with the GPS tracking while running the screen at the hightest setting...if it doesn't shut down from heat, it'll shut down from a low battery, even if plugged in.

    But then I also ride all day, not just for a couple hours. That makes a difference.

    Once I recovered from seeing the prices of dedicated motorcycle GPSs, I haven't regretted the purchase at all. And now, that cost is nothing compared to the cost of a new Samsung or Apple phone.
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  9. wonderings

    wonderings Long timer

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    Personally I like Garmin and the main reason for that is BaseCamp. Now a lot of people hate BaseCamp, but there are some like myself who love it. I find it very simple to use for the basics. You can get more involved and do a lot of things. I like offline mapping on my desktop/laptop (Use Mac). No internet connection required and no plotting on the small screen of a phone or the GPS itself.

    I have a BMW Nav V and as a backup a Zumo 660. The Zumo has served me well for years and had the previous version as well. No experience with newer models. The Zumo 660 routed ad re routed quickly. I liked that it had a media player and an expansion slot for micro SD... which you will need for map updates.

    Lots of options out there, good look finding what suits you best!
    #9
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  10. shrederscott

    shrederscott Long timer

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    Hi

    What GPS to run or not is a function or where and how you ride.

    If you seldom leave cell service areas ... then sticking with your smart phone for GPS needs is a valid choice.

    Do you need road maps or topographic maps on your GPS ?

    I run the Garmin Montana on their rugged powered handlebar mount.

    I am happy with it.

    That said ...

    I live in colorado, and mostly ride in the backcountry where there is no cell signal.

    The Montana is optimized for backcountry uses, topographic maps not street maps...great in the backcountry ... OK ..on the slab ...slab roads are shown ...but ....NO turn by turn navigation like your phone or other more automotive GPS unit's like the zumo.

    Less is more ... if you can do with just your phone ..that's GREAT ... if you need that backcountry topographic maps and data ... Garmin Montana is tough to beat

    Good luck

    Scott
    #10
  11. wonderings

    wonderings Long timer

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    Most cell phones have GPS chips in them and do not require a cell signal. If you download the maps through an app you can turn off your data and all cell services and still use GPS. I do this for my parents when they are in Europe. Have German maps loaded on the phone and everything else off.
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  12. TBTSyncro

    TBTSyncro Been here awhile

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    Try to use a phone GPS without cell service to search for hotels, fuel, food, etc and let me know how it goes. :)
    #12
  13. Doug Just Doug

    Doug Just Doug Silly Party Candidate Supporter

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    I use a dedicated phone on the bike for nav in GPS-only mode (no plan, no SIM card), which can still do anything on WiFi a "normal" phone does, plus I always carry my iPhone with a Verizon plan, so it hasn't been an issue. I can't do some things on-the-fly someone with a GPS unit can do, but I probably shouldn't be doing that while moving anyway. :^)
    #13
  14. Daboo

    Daboo Been here awhile

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    Which phone?

    Chris
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  15. wonderings

    wonderings Long timer

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    Would be the same as any GPS if you have the maps and POI downloaded. I myself prefer a stand alone GPS, but using a smart phone these days is not what it once was as most if not all modern smart phones have dedicated GPS chips in them. The rest is up to you if you download a nav app that has offline maps. It can be done.
    #15
  16. shrederscott

    shrederscott Long timer

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    Hi

    You are of course correct.

    But

    For backcountry use, a Garmin Montana Vs smartphone .... IMHO ....Garmin wins, due to greater durability (shock and water resistant ) ... better handlebar mounting and waterproof power connections.

    For less remote riding styles, I think a smartphone would work just fine.

    Scott
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  17. Grinnin

    Grinnin Forever N00b Supporter

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    I like the Garmin Montana. Rugged 12V powered mount. Bright display. Works with any gloves.

    I have used a Garmin nuvi. It worked OK.

    I have tried 3 or 4 apps on tablet and phone. Never had decent readability on a motorcycle. Some apps seem to have slicker route creation than Garmin, but that's not what I use a GPS for.
    #17
  18. TBTSyncro

    TBTSyncro Been here awhile

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    That hasnt been my experience. With Google maps it has very limited search without data.
    I actually use a dedicated GPS, papermaps, and my phone as backup. So i dont exactly have a simple solution. lol
    #18
  19. Torquemada

    Torquemada Adventurer

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    IMG_1019.jpg

    Relatively new unit.

    Garmin GPSMAP 66ST. Bigger screen and wider spaced buttons than my 64 series. My gloves love it. Real buttons are your friend. It can use widgets though I don’t really need any. The weather app is pretty nice but that needs WiFi so I’ll leech and check at a gas station or hotspot to the phone if there’s service. BirdsEye downloads directly over WiFi and pretty fast too. Waiting for the RAM mount to come out but until then I hacked the bicycle adapter. FYI you’ll probably opt for USB power but they will run pretty much “all day” (8+ hours depending on settings) on a pair of Eneloops. I sometimes need to pluck it off the bike and carry it around. There’s also an expedition mode that will last for much much longer.

    Maps:
    Comes with a topo base map but you’ll need the Topo US 24k Maps [regional] which will add additional POI and other details as well as turn-by-turn directions and road-based routing and plotting.

    I always have a compass and grab a real local map at a gas station as a backup. GPS only is not smart or safe.

    Phone is in the pocket connected to the Sena because service is never always going to be there and I don’t like those kinds of surprises. I also like my GPS from a sat and not a tower. Above all I want my phone battery fresh to accurately capture my tone as I thoughtfully explain to an unwary coworker that I’m still on vacation and to stop leaving me voicemails or pleading for help from emergency rescue services. Which reminds me of the other reason why it’s in my pocket; If I fly it flies with me. Weeee! haha.
    #19
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  20. duffy1298

    duffy1298 Adventurer

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    Are any of these units well rounded? I’m referring to turn by turn stuff in the city, as well as topographical mapping? My riding is pretty well rounded I do a lot of on road and off-road.
    #20