New Garmin Zumo 396

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

  1. JP4

    JP4 Thumper Geek

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    I started having Bluetooth issues with mine a few weeks ago. It has difficulty connecting to my phone and when it does, it won't stay connected for more than a minute or two. For now I've unpaired my phone so I don't keep getting the disconnect message.
  2. scridercoach

    scridercoach Old crusty bast**d

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    Well as I said it was about a year and a half ago, so not sure about their "logs" and "files". I've heard horror stories in the past about Garmin support on the GPS side. Mind you, this is my first true GPS system. So I've never been able to compare it to anything else. Other than that one hiccup, I've had zero issues before or after, so I've been happy enough with it, as it meets my modest needs.
  3. WalterMitty2

    WalterMitty2 Been here awhile

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    I"m feeling the same. I am getting close to pulling the trigger on the 396, but a few things are giving me pause....

    1) the issues some seem to have
    2) limited mounting space on my bike (CRF 250L)
    3) I need a new phone anyway
    4) I've been messing around with MotionX-GPS

    While having a dedicated GPS unit with a phone backup seems like the best, the costs and ease of use just doesn't seem to be there.
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  4. JP4

    JP4 Thumper Geek

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    WalterMitty2, I've been running both the 396 and either an old Moto X4 or Moto G7 with data only sims though Project Fi. Running Gaia and Locus on the Androids. For me it's not an either or proposition yet, but more of a what is the best tool for the job. Certainly the cheap androids allow for more detailed mapping than the stock maps in the Zumo. The Zumo is really good for referencing on the fly as it's easier to read and use while moving. They can be had pretty cheap if you watch the sales. I think I paid about $220 for mine. Is it perfect, no. Is it easy to use, generally yes. For riding out in the woods and more remote areas, I'm favoring the Android's at this point. For running on the road, I prefer the Zumo. FYI, those Moto phones have been bullet proof mounted to my DRZ. No issues with vibration as they don't have optical stabilization. They are highly water resistant and really cheap. Though the batteries easily last all day for normal use, I have to keep the charger plugged in for doing gps mapping more that a few hours.
  5. CRracer712

    CRracer712 Africa Twin Rocks! Supporter

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    I've got my old zumo 550 on my 230L, the 550/cradle footprint is bigger than the 396(I have the 396 on my CBR 1000rr). You can get the 396 new at the GPS store for 229.

    [​IMG]
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  6. JP4

    JP4 Thumper Geek

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    I installed the free OSM maps last week. Kind of a pain to figure out how to do it, but so worth it. It's still routable and shows much more detail. Most all of the forest service and logging roads are on it in my area, as well as mtn bike trails and other details not present on the stock maps.
  7. WalterMitty2

    WalterMitty2 Been here awhile

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    I love that you posted a pic. Thanks! I bought a 396 and will attempt mounting it this weekend. I will mess around with placement, but given all the other cables that are zip tied to the bars from the factory, I'm planning on mounting the ball mount on the "down tube" of the bar before it gets to the bar clamps...then I will use the RAM arm to position it as needed. I hope the arm is long enough to get the unit high enough so that its not blocked by the skinny cross bar on the handlebars.

    I also like seeing what you did with all the excess wire. The 396 comes with a TON of wire, that you really can't cut...at least not the section of wire that runs between the power plug and the inline power block. I"m going to have to get creative on where I can tuck all this extra wire, since I plan to wire it into the provided factory accessory plug, which is a very short distance from the bars.
  8. CRracer712

    CRracer712 Africa Twin Rocks! Supporter

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    I'll post a couple more pictures tonight. That wiring bundle is zipped to the left fork(not how it is in photo). Then the wire runs in wire harness(factory harness route under fuel tank), and dumps out just below petcock which is where my battery tender sae connector is. I soldered an sae connector to the Garmin harness. Did the same on my 396, but the sae connector on my CBR I'd run up to the tree.
  9. WalterMitty2

    WalterMitty2 Been here awhile

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    I'm not running it back to the battery. As you probably know, the current CRF250L's have a factory supplied accessory plug provided (on the right side behind the light for the L models). I'm actually mounting quite a few things....GPS mount, charging unit (12v & USB) and a phone holder (RAM). I will attach all 3 several times to get a layout that I like, and then worry about all the wiring. The phone mount has zero wiring, and the charging unit I will cut as needed, it's just the GPS that comes with miles of cord. I wish you could order them in various lengths.

    I look forward to your pics. Especially how you mounted it to your left fork leg.
  10. CRracer712

    CRracer712 Africa Twin Rocks! Supporter

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    Late night at work. I'll put up picture tomorrow kinda showing where I located the ram ball.

    No, I didn't know the 250l had an accessory plug! That's awesome! That's probably gonna be my next bike. Want something that'll run highway speed a little better than the 230l.
  11. WalterMitty2

    WalterMitty2 Been here awhile

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    Please include one of how you bundled all the wire to your fork or wherever as well if you can. Thx
  12. CRracer712

    CRracer712 Africa Twin Rocks! Supporter

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  13. bross

    bross Where we riding to? Supporter

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    You can get a longer RAM arm as well, that will allow you to move the gps up / sideways to keep it from blocking your gauges / idiot lights. My RAM arms have all been in the 4-6" range.

    [​IMG]
  14. WalterMitty2

    WalterMitty2 Been here awhile

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    I wired it all in today. Lots of bumps in the road, but so far I'm happy with the current layout. Thanks for all the help.

    IMG_4148.JPG
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  15. CRracer712

    CRracer712 Africa Twin Rocks! Supporter

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    I was browsing the early goings of this thread and noticed so many people excited about wifi/updating via wifi.

    Do many people actually do this? My initial update was attempted via wifi, it failed early on. I don't recall the exact message. Nonetheless, I used GE to update it.

    Since then I bought a drivesmart 61 and BC40, unit came with 2019 maps. It has WiFi, but with prior 396 wifi update experience, and lots of reviews later saying even Garmin recommends using GE, I used GE.

    Unbeknownst to me, and why it was this way, my DS61 wouldn't update to 2021 because GE showed it HAD 2021, even though the unit said 2019, and basecamp said the units map was 2019. Funny this was, connecting the DS61 to wifi, the DS61 said updated map available.

    As always, I duplicate ever GPS before doing anything. After investigating, I realized the unit came to me from Garmin(where I purchased it) with only the gmapprom.img, not the .unl or .gma file.

    Since GE said it was current, and a reinstall wouldn't fix it. I decided to let it attempt a wifi update. It took almost 5 hours to update, but it did. In those 5 hours it failed several times, but the message said it failed, would keep trying, or I could use GE. I just left it alone. Pretty soon it'd go again and it was picking up where it had failed instead of starting over.

    Anyway, just curious if the 396 works the same way over wifi. And when all was updated, my DS61 showed 2021, and had the .unl and .gma files(gmapprom).
  16. bross

    bross Where we riding to? Supporter

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    I used wifi once just to do a system update on my 396, probably the language file. I have been using GE simply because once a map update is available I just cycle in my too many Garmin gps'. I only see the wifi updating helpful if you're on the road and absolutely need an update, rare. Plus I doubt any coffee shop or hotel wifi would actually work.

    I believe the wifi updating is just a box to check to say they have it, whether it actually works well or not. I'll most likely be running a Windows PC for as long as I need a computer so not a big deal to ME to just use GE.
  17. CRracer712

    CRracer712 Africa Twin Rocks! Supporter

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    I'd definitely just use GE, it's much faster! Kinda glad this particular unit had the wifi option to correct the issue. Just seems odd the device knew there was an update, but GE said it was up to date. I'm gonna call Garmin this week and run it by them.
  18. WalterMitty2

    WalterMitty2 Been here awhile

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    I'm lost. What's "GE"?
  19. bross

    bross Where we riding to? Supporter

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    GarminExpress
    Garmin Express is computer software used to update maps and device software by downloading and installing the latest versions on to your device. These updates are released by Garmin several times a year.

    Map Updates - Map updates provide the latest changes to roads and locations on the map used by your navigation device. The map files are large because they contain detailed information. These take longer to install.

    Software Updates - Software updates make changes to the operating system files. These smaller files usually download in a few minutes. Garmin Express may alert you to reboot your device after a software update.

    https://support.garmin.com/en-CA/?productID=168768&tab=topics
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  20. scridercoach

    scridercoach Old crusty bast**d

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    I’ve updated on WiFi once or twice, but it’s obviously much slower than a dedicated connection from a computer. Download speed of the little unit is just what you’d expect from a “little unit” cpu.

    Technically I’m still downloading from WiFi when I use GE on my desktop, as my computer is connected to a wireless router.

    Moral of the story? It’s not the WiFi per se’, it’s the hardware that’s doing the work.