New Garmin Zumo 396

Discussion in 'GPS 101 - Which GPS For Me' started by StuartV, Apr 11, 2018.

  1. SnowGS

    SnowGS It wasn’t me, officer.

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    It’s a gps....

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    #21
  2. scridercoach

    scridercoach Old crusty bast**d

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    :doh

    Didn't even think about that! Not to say I looked to see if there was a matching hole there. I put it all together before I even really questioned myself. Guess I'll know for sure when I hook the rest up.

    Thanks for verifying my IQ and shoe size match up!:D

    Looking forward to your review of the 596 after your trip next week.
    #22
  3. UtahSooner

    UtahSooner awagnon

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    Those who have seen the 396 in person, please tell me about the screen. The online specs says it has a TFT screen rather than the older "transflective" screen (whatever that is). Is it the same old screen technology with a different name, or is it really a TFT screen? Also, I guess there is no output for hard-wiring earphones? If not, that could be a deal breaker. I don't use bluetooth, but rather use the earphone line-out to connect to a small stereo amplifier to power the speakers in my helmet. Thanks.
    #23
  4. scridercoach

    scridercoach Old crusty bast**d

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    I can't actually tell you if it's TFT or not. I just can't tell. The owner's manual that comes with it and that is online manual only gives 7 "specs", none of which mention the screen. I know the website says it's TFT, which is where I'm guessing you got the information from originally. Now to be fair, I'm a GPS noob, but the screen looks good to me and has a good feel when manipulating it.

    However, I can verify there is not an outlet for earphones. There is only a very small external speaker.
    #24
  5. bross

    bross Where we riding to? Supporter

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    Here's a good tutorial for Basecamp...

    http://www.newenglandriders.org/GPS/Learn_BaseCamp.htm
    #25
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  6. HarveyM

    HarveyM Been here awhile

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    #26
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  7. scridercoach

    scridercoach Old crusty bast**d

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    #27
  8. scridercoach

    scridercoach Old crusty bast**d

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    Well, I experimented with taking it outside in glaring direct sunlight, with no clouds. Tried all angles. With direct sunlight, set at highest brightness setting, I could still make out the map and direction of travel. You have to focus more so than what would be a usual "glance", but much better than on an iPhone for comparison.
    #28
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  9. UtahSooner

    UtahSooner awagnon

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    According to the table you linked, the 590 amd 595 are not listed as TFT but rather "dual orientation transflective". Is that the same as TFT? If so, why did they call it something else just for those two models.

    According to the chart, the 395 does have audio line-out, which would be important for my setup.

    -Al
    #29
  10. scridercoach

    scridercoach Old crusty bast**d

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    Yes, but the 396 does not.
    #30
  11. Marcosdip

    Marcosdip Marcos

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    Hello, I'm new to the subject GPS and I wanted to ask you all if believe that this new Zumo 396 is worth more than a Navigator V with craddle? I need a GPS for long trips in Latin America and had found a Nav V for a good price, although higher than the price of the new 396. In particular I would like to know which of the two is better as to:

    - image quality of maps;

    - ability to insert other maps, developed by third parties, such as the maps of Argentina, Brazil, Peru and other countries in Latin America that are available free of charge by non-profit organizations;

    - bluetooth audible warnings on conversions, cross roads etc;

    - ease of creating routes with software like Basecamp and inserting them through gps connections with the computer;

    Thank you
    #31
  12. stk0308

    stk0308 Long timer

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    Fracking hell! I finally jump ship and start mucking with a smartphone app on my new bike. Then they go and do what I asked for years ago, put smartphone link on the 39# series.
    #32
  13. scridercoach

    scridercoach Old crusty bast**d

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    Okay. A quick review of the 396. (Keeping in mind I'm a new GPS user.) Used it every day for a week.

    Had bouts of rain, some heavy-some light, unit had no issues. As for brightness and visibility of the screen, it was fine. Yes, with the sun directly over my shoulder it was difficult at times, but that's to be expected. Given the audio is on, I found it no big issue. The map is fine. I know that people comment on the cartoonish graphics, but IMHO it's fine. Personally, I'd probably prefer the 596 screen size, but that's only because I'm getting a bit older and use reading glasses, so sometimes trying to see information at a glance wasn't easy. Not sure if the 596 and marginal upgrade in screen size would actually make a difference.

    My biggest problem was learning how the integration of my Sena 20s and iPhone was best accomplished. It seemed like every time I'd turn things on/off or at random times the integration was just not there. I also found that when one of my riding buddies would initiate the intercom, it could make the Navigation or music drop out after he turned off the intercom. (I think that was more of a Sena issue, though, but not sure as it's the first time I've actually used the intercom.) In the long run, I found that completely unpairing my Sena from my iPhone and only using the 396 as the hub was best. I also found that you have to make sure to go into the Garmin Bluetooth setting screen and verify connections and such. Also, since I use Spotify, I had to make sure the iPhone feed was on the phone itself and not direct to Pandora. It was a learning curve, for sure. By day two/three I had it figured out. However, that being said, the connection from Sena to iPhone through the 396 hub would sometimes not let the Sena or the Garmin control the music playback and I'd have to manipulate the phone. Still not sure why that would occur, as everything showed as linked properly. One other thing that never worked out, though. The SmartLink app from the phone to the unit would drop without warning, a lot and not relink. Now truthfully the app is not that important to me, but still. (May have been a phone issue, not sure.) Did use the phone through the unit a couple of times and it was flawless.

    As for actual mapping and routing. Importing .gpx was a breeze. (I still need to learn how to manipulate the waypoints so the unit doesn't announce every freaking address that I'm passing that was shaping a route.) Inputting on the fly was a learning curve, but only because I wasn't familiar with the unit (or using modern GPS units for that matter), but it became intuitive after a couple of days. The Garmin "Adventurous Route" was used during one day while we were waiting for a buddy's bike to be serviced, so we utilized it to burn a couple of hours. It found some interesting and curvy roads for us. It's admittedly dependent on where you're riding, but it seems to do a good job finding motorcycle friendly roads.

    Overall, I'm happy with the unit and will probably have a better understanding and fine tune it with more use.

    Not the most in-depth review, but as I said, I'm working from no previous experience for comparison.
    #33
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  14. Crackerbiker

    Crackerbiker Adventurer

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    Does the 396 show the rider alerts on the screen like someone commented about the 595 and 596 or can the rider alerts be turned off, both audio and visual? Thanks.
    #34
  15. scridercoach

    scridercoach Old crusty bast**d

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    It does, not every alert, but most. You can disable the majority if so desired.
    #35
  16. ki_ote

    ki_ote Cindi Jo Admirer

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    @scridercoach... thanks for the review. Thinking about this unit myself and watching your trials.

    I've never met a KTM owner who wasn't proud of themself.
    #36
  17. SnowGS

    SnowGS It wasn’t me, officer.

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    After 4000kms of 396 use with my iPhone and Sena 20s, I have very similar experience as scridercoach.
    I’ll add the message alerts were great, traffic integration was very good and accurate.
    My gripe (and this may be Garmin or Sena’s fault) was if I muted the 396, it frequently would not stay muted, would often disconnect my continuous communication with my riding buddy’s 20s, and though it would still be connected to the iPhone, trying to call would throw an error on the phone.
    If I stopped playing with mute, most everything worked well.
    The 396 is also a lot faster than my 2 older car Garmins.
    10 hours of my 19 hour Saddlesore 1000 was in rain and that didn’t affect it, the mount was excellent and overall feels top quality. At half the price of the bigger units I find it a good value.
    #37
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  18. bross

    bross Where we riding to? Supporter

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    If your Sena is anything like our Scala Rider G9s, then that's where I'd be laying the blame. We have been using Scala intercoms for the past 10 years and our first Q2s gave us years of faithful service till we fried one trying to charge using an adapter in Europe. Fast forward and we replace them with Cardos latest and greatest at the time, their Q9 Powerset. Talk about frustrating intercoms, wow.

    We don't listen to music, answer our phones, or pair to my gps. We just want to talk to each other when needed. We spend more time trying to shut the f#cking radio off, then we do talking. The Q9s can be configured via their app or on the web, then updated but you cannot turn the services OFF, which would take 5 minutes of programming but nope can't be done.

    I wish the intercom companies would make a simple version without all the bells and whistles but still had the latest radio chips etc.

    Thanks for the review of the 396.
    #38
  19. johnnywheels

    johnnywheels Been here awhile Supporter

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    I think they make handlebar mounts for MacBook Pros
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  20. scridercoach

    scridercoach Old crusty bast**d

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    I'm actually pretty happy with the Sena. It's not perfect, but it fits the bill. I don't use it for intercom (first time was this trip), I mainly use it for music. But as above stated, using it for my first run with a Garmin and such, it was pretty convoluted, but not really on the Sena end of it. I think it's just trying to run too much at once.
    #40