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Placement in Car?

bravozulu 0 Points
edited November -1 in GPS Recommendations
I'm set on buying a DeLorme 60PN unit for my Toyota Camry. My experience with a Satellite radio educated me about the problems created when the antenna doesn't have a clear view of the sky.

a) is a dash-top or windshield mount the best solution?
b) is voice activation helpful? My friends are divided on this.
c) the built in car units I've seen (as a passenger) were far too large and somewhat distracting to a driver. The DeLorme has a screen smaller than the average Garmin. I was a pilot so I know how to glance at an instrument rather than stare at it. Is the DeLorme screen big enough to guide a person through city traffic?


Gary in Santa Monica


  • Tim 1484 Points
    Two things.

    1) The DeLorme PN-series devices can do street routing and navigation, but that isn't what they were primarily designed for. It will get you by in a pinch, but I wouldn't want to use it as a primary car GPS.

    2) Satellite radio and GPS use very different technology for receiving signals. While they both use satellites, that is about where the similarities end. Satellite radio relies on often a single geostationary satellite while GPS relies on dozens of geosynchronous satellites.

    So while your radio might be trying to get a signal from one satellite and blank out from time to time if the signal is blocked, GPS just requires a connection to just a few of the dozens of GPS satellites for it to work. Thus satellite radio will have many, many more moments of "silence" while the GPS continues working happily without interruption.
  • bravozulu 0 Points
    Thanks. Back to my questions.

    So, placement of the unit isn't critical?
    And deLorme isn't good for car navigation?
    What about voice capability?
  • Boyd 2002 Points
    I'll admit that I know very little about DeLorme, but I didn't think they had any voice capabilities (either input or output). And I don't see any mention of this in the specs either:

    What are you expecting from this device? It has a small 2.2" very low resolution (220 x 176 pixel) screen and pushbutton interface that will be awkward in a car.
  • roadster 96 Points
    DElorm's are great. love the laptop software very much.

    to place a gps in thecar anything infront on the shiled is Illegal. and subject for a ticket if a cop needs an excuse. even hanging on the rearview mirror.

    I place mine center on the Mid dash of the car in a tray. Most drive in the lower left corner of a left side driver. vs for rightside driver..
  • Tim 1484 Points
    So, placement of the unit isn't critical?
    Not typically. Sometimes it can be in cars that have athermic windshields.
    And deLorme isn't good for car navigation?
    What about voice capability?
    No, the DeLrome only has beep prompts.
  • alanb 557 Points
    You might be getting it confused with Delorme Street Atlas USA. When SA is installed on a laptop with a GPS receiver and microphone, it can accept voice commands for navigation. But the Delorme PN series stand-alone devices do not have that capability.
  • cuc tu 91 Points
    The other's covered it well, but I'll inject my pov anyway...My experience is with Garmin Nuvi auto and GPSMap 60cx trail devices.

    a) dash-top or windshield mount is a good solution since it is easier to see - you don't have to move your eyes as far off the road. Reception has not been an issue since the industry developed high sensitivity receivers.

    b) voice activation is helpful, IMHO. Keep in mind that it is a bit limited in what you can command, but my device works as designed with little frustration.

    c) glancing at an instrument rather than stare at it is fine, when it is a simpler instrument. You will find the small screen and relatively little feedback harder to deal with. You'll have to read which way to turn, on which street, which may not be fully spelled out, and then determine relative proximity on a small moving image of a map.

    Plugging in destinations is cumbersome on a handheld, so much so that I use the PC for that. My 60cx worked better than nothing in the car, but there is no contest compared to the ease of use of a cheap auto device.
  • bravozulu 0 Points
    I did some hunting around last night and read the regulations in California for dash-top GPS. It can be mounted on the windshield only in the extreme left hand, lower corner and extreme right corner.

    And Garmin Nuvii models seem to offer ease of use and capability for $250 and under. I've used GPS and moving-map GPS in small aircraft. But have only observed their use in cars when others are driving.

    Thanks to all who responded.
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