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New GPS User. Garmin 64st or Delorme PN-60?

BlueShwagger 0 Points
edited October 2015 in GPS Discussions

I'm new to the whole GPS scene and was wondering if I could get some help with a few question. First, I'll mostly be using the GPS for hunting & hiking to mark notable locations. (tracks, the truck, camp etc.) I've pretty much narrowed my search down to these two units. From the few days of research I've done the deciding factor at this point is the available maps and their associated prices. I'd like to get the ST with it's preloaded maps and download additional free maps, but from what I've read it seems that the software topo10 is better than Garmin's version.

Can anyone elaborate on the differences regarding the software differences and costs associated with the "official" manufacturer maps?

Also, my brother and dad both have Delormes. Is it possible to share info between a Delorme and a Garmin? Such as way points, routes etc.

Thank you for any input or help you can provide it's much appreciated!


  • Boyd 1848 Points
    edited October 2015
    The PN-60 was introduced in 2010 which is getting rather old in terms of technology. DeLorme seems to have basically given up on the handheld market. The GPSMap 64 series can receive GLONASS satellite signals which may help acquire a fix more quickly and hold a better lock in difficult conditions. It also has some wireless connectivity features that work with smartphones.

    Personally I don't care for either of these devices though because the screens are very low resolution and rather small. I have a Montana 600 with a larger, higher resolution touchscreen. But there are plenty of people who like the pushbutton interface and don't mind the smaller screen.

    No experience with the DeLorme myself. But Tim, our site admin, has one so maybe he will weigh in.

    I don't think the "t model" Garmin handhelds are a very compelling deal. They include the US Topo 100k map which is not very good. If you are familiar with the paper USGS maps, you should already know that 100k (or 1:100,000 scale) maps are not very accurate or detailed.

    Sometimes you will find a nice sale on these models, but aside from that I don't think the extra cost is justified. is a good resource for free, user-created Garmin maps. Garmin sells their own version of 24k (1:24,000) maps. They include routable roads and POIs just like their City Navigator automotive maps. Each 24k map costs about $100 and only covers a few states though.

    Garmin also has a product called BirdsEye topo which consists of scans of 1:24000 USGS topo maps. For $30 you get unlimited downloads for a year. You can keep everything you download after the subscription expires too.

    Garmin uses the .gpx file format for routes, tracks and waypoints. This is widely supported by many different software packages so I'm sure it's possible to share data with your family.
  • Thanks for the info, Boyd.

    The reason I'm opting for a model with push buttons rather than a touch screen is because I read that they operate more reliably in cold weather. Also, that they are more robust/tough. My gear tends to go through the grinder when I'm out hunting and scouting so toughness is pretty big to me. My brother has a PN-60 and the screen resolution/size are not a big concern to me.

    I see what you're saying about the 100k maps that are included with the st not being very enticing for the price difference (compared to the s-model). If I go with the Garmin (which I'm leaning towards), I'll probably get the s-model with the Huntsview map package from Garmin for $80. That has all the info I need for land boundaries.

    Thank again!
  • Tim 1466 Points
    DeLorme's background is a mapping company. I live in a very remote area, and most maps are terrible. While the topo lines themselves might be fine as everyone uses similar datasets, the actual features on the topo maps (forest roads, small streams, types of vegetation, etc) are important to me. I can get the detail I need from the DeLorme maps, but really nobody else has accurate maps in my area.

    For that reason, I still use my PN-60. And I also do quite a bit of my outside activity in bitterly cold weather when the last thing I want to do is to take a glove off. So the PN-60 does me well there too.

    But yes, even for DeLorme's flagship model it is showing signs of age.
  • alanb 418 Points
    It is interesting that the subject of the Delorme PN-60 would come up today. I just got an email from Delorme (first email from them in a couple of years) advertising that the "PN-60 GPS IS BACK IN STOCK - QUANTITIES LIMITED" $299.95 including including Topo North America.

    It makes you wonder just how long Delorme can stretch out the marketing life of the PN-60.
  • Hi Tim. I was trying to look at a list of maps from DeLorme through there map library, but couldn't access it 'cause I don't have the Topo software/subscription. Do you know if DeLorme offers maps with hunting units, private/public/forest lands? Also, does the subscription have to be active to update these maps or do they auto update as boundaries change?

    Does it seem remotely possible that DeLorme may release a new PN model equivalent to Garmin 64 series?

  • Boyd 1848 Points
    edited October 2015
    A number of people think DeLorme isn't especially interested in the handheld device market anymore. They have been adding to their inReach line and now offer a smartphone app.

    Garmin really owns the handheld market today with 32 different devices (creating lots of confusion)

    Garmin has never offered an "On the Trail" app, they don't want to cannibalize their device sales. ;)
  • alanb 418 Points
    Boyd said:

    Garmin has never offered an "On the Trail" app, they don't want to cannibalize their device sales. ;)

    Not to mention that their success with the automotive navigation apps (Viago, Street Pilot, Garmin Navigator) has been less then stellar. I kind of liked Viago, but alas, it is no more. I guess the Navigon app has been somewhat successful, but that was purchased, not developed by Garmin.

  • Tim 1466 Points
    I know the DeLorme maps in my area do offer boundaries of the various game management districts, as well as land preserves, etc. I don't know if that applies to all areas. I don't foresee DeLorme offering new hardware soon, but they could surprise me.

    Yes, you do need an active subscription to receive updates to the maps.
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