Which GPS is right for me? Budget GPS

Discussion in 'GPS 101 - Which GPS For Me' started by Dizo, Aug 2, 2010.

  1. Dizo

    Dizo 'Riding' since day 1

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2010
    Oddometer:
    4
    Location:
    Squamish, BC
    I hate to open yet another 'which one should I buy' thread, but after spending several hours scouring ADV rider and other forums I am still truly lost.

    I am looking for a cheap/budget unit, but I am not afraid of used or refurbished, ebay or craigslist, anything to get a deal. The unit would mostly be used for retracing my tracks when I get lost, or for loading a days worth of logging roads from google maps or a .gpx file from a buddy to follow with points of interest marked before hand. I doubt I will use the unit in the city (as I tend to prefer good ol' paper maps and getting lost) but I would like to get some vague directions through a foreign city to visit a friend or whatnot. I dont need incredible detail, color is not necessary, and I have young eyes so screen size is not paramount, but I would like to be able to see the majority of service or logging roads so that I may follow them.

    Waterproof seems to be something everyone is worried about, but I dont think i'm too worried about that. I rarely get water above my knees and if i'm dropping the bike in water that deep then messing my GPS up is not the worst of my worries, but I would like it to be foul weather proof. I dont care too much about voice directions as I wear ear plugs, but it might be a nice addition if the cost difference is not overwhelming.

    And finally, to sum things up, I would like a GPS unit that would allow me to ride somewhere I am not accustomed to with its tracking on so that I may find my way home after taking a dozen incorrect turns and several miles of tight trails or other unmarked roads. I already carry a SPOT to comfort loved ones and to call in the cavalry to get me out of any tight spots I may encounter on a solo adventure.

    I appreciate any responses, and I will continue to check any local electronics stores for sales.
    #1
  2. CHIA

    CHIA Ya, right

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2010
    Oddometer:
    59
    Location:
    Van, BC
    The GPSMAP60 would fit on your Ninja 250 nicely :evil

    I'm very happy with mine, tough to find used, but expect to pay about $200 locally.

    The couple on our local CL are priced way too high.
    #2
  3. Dizo

    Dizo 'Riding' since day 1

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2010
    Oddometer:
    4
    Location:
    Squamish, BC
    Thanks for the reply Chia (Small world, eh?), I'd seen the GPSMAP60 a few times and though about it. I dont mind that its black and white (for a few hundred more you can get the CX, HC, or HCX for the newer version of the device, but thats a costly difference) and as you said, the few used ones locally are way too high priced. How did you like the maps that came with it? Buying additional maps looks to be incredibly expensive.

    I'm in the process of transfering to a more adventure oriented motorcycle as my Ninja doesnt much like hours of gravel roads or the 100+ pounds of gear it has to carry on them, so i'm moving to a more dual sport bike (still small cc's though!). I'd use this on my enduro and trials bike as well as my new road bike to help find some new trails without getting too lost, and then re-find them later. The SPOT is nice for family members to know i'm still alive enough to be moving around, but it doesn't do me much good trying to find the way back to an inhabited road.

    I'll keep my eye out for a cheap GPSMAP60, and go to a few electronics stores this weekend to see if they have any old models on sale... seems to be lots of touch screen auto models for sale, but no weather/bike-ready versions!
    #3
  4. Countdown

    Countdown Long timer

    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2003
    Oddometer:
    6,933
    Location:
    Carson City/Ridgecrest
    If you want cheap, 60 would be my last choice.

    Shop around, do you have Costco, lots of stuff under $150 with maps and all the street features. If you buy a 60 that is only half the cost of everything you will need.
    #4
  5. Dizo

    Dizo 'Riding' since day 1

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2010
    Oddometer:
    4
    Location:
    Squamish, BC
    We have Costco up here, but nothing 'cheap' by any standards there. Cheapest handheld (easier to put on a bike and generally far more rugged) GPS unit is 270$ and comes with no extra maps or anything. I can find a new GPSMAP 60 for that price without any real trouble, and there are several stores that carry <200$ GPS units with no additional maps. I'd rather not shell out 80$ for maps on top of these prices... dont any of them have stock maps that are good?
    I was under the impression that the GPSMAP 60 had fairly usable maps on it from the factory. Am I crazy or what?
    #5
  6. GetYourOwn

    GetYourOwn Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2005
    Oddometer:
    879
    Location:
    Nowhere great
    Nuvi 500 199.00 at Amazon
    #6
  7. Emmbeedee

    Emmbeedee Procrastinators

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2008
    Oddometer:
    11,481
    Location:
    Near Ottawa, ON, Canada
    None of the 60 models, the plain 60, C, CS, Cx, CSx or any others have "fairly usable" maps when you buy them. They have a basemap and nothing else unless you get a bundle...

    No idea if you're crazy, though. <:)
    #7
  8. Dizo

    Dizo 'Riding' since day 1

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2010
    Oddometer:
    4
    Location:
    Squamish, BC
    I saw this model as well on-sale for the same price elseware. I was hyped about it until i read a few lines of reviews and descriptions from Garmins site. You can't load any tracks or routes on it, and the tracking feature is fairly dumb on this one model. That pushes it over the top for me, i can't deal with those on a device thats already more vulnerable than the handhelds and at about the same price.


    Emmbeedee;
    I guess I am crazy. Thats rediculous that 60' series dont come with anything useful in terms of maps. I dont want to spend 200-400$ and then turn around and shell out another 150$ for detailed maps of western Canada and USA.

    I'll keep looking, maybe i'll find a deal with maps included? This whole GPS thing is expensive! Maps are already out there, i dont get why the GPS versions are so darn expensive. That Nuvi 500 would be looking mighty fine if it had good maps on it stock, but i doubt it if the more expensive modern 60 series dont. Guess i'll stick to getting lost until a more economical solution comes up on craigslist or someone has a real good sale.
    #8
  9. ricmachado

    ricmachado Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2010
    Oddometer:
    355
    Location:
    Longview, TX
    I just sold my garmin 2720 for 100 bucks. I liked that one, used most in the car for road trips (can be used on a bike, it's waterproof).
    you can find same model on the price range 95 - 125.

    good luck
    #9
  10. Emmbeedee

    Emmbeedee Procrastinators

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2008
    Oddometer:
    11,481
    Location:
    Near Ottawa, ON, Canada
    The Garmin Topo V4 mapset is really good for the price, at $100 from GPSCity in Calgary. Topo has a lot of road navigation built in, as well as the topo stuff. I think it's the best map you can get if your budget is limited.

    Also, it's not locked to any gps, so if you upgrade your gps later, you can still use Topo on the new unit.
    #10
  11. rwamf

    rwamf Follow me

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2003
    Oddometer:
    1,371
    Location:
    Odessa TX USA
    [​IMG]
    $220 with the best Topo maps, Great Tracking and very sturdy, and only $10 to upgrade to TOPO 9.0 NA ( in case you get it with Topo 8.0) 9.0 includes full Topo , and streets for Canada also, if it does not come with it already.
    #11
  12. CHIA

    CHIA Ya, right

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2010
    Oddometer:
    59
    Location:
    Van, BC
    Sorry, I meant the colour model, I have a CSx, and forgot they came in a B&W version too.

    I bought mine on CL for $120 about 4mos ago, great deal!

    I downloaded the latest City Navigator and Topo Maps online for free (yes, I'm bad)

    RAM mount was about $25 for my bike.

    I use the Harley Davidson Ride Planner on-line, love it! I also use Tyre, which is free, also a great option to the awful MapSource program.

    So, all in, I'm at about $150, and this thing does EVERYTHING.

    If you can find a 60Cs or CSx on CL for under $200 Canadian, I feel it's excellent value for a high quality unit.

    I can hook ya up with the maps on an SD card :)
    #12