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Garmin DriveSmart 61 LMT-S or NOT?

I have been using my Garmin Nuvi 2595LMT since December 2011.
I use it in my car as well as in my large motorhome. I travel a lot in my motorhome in new places and depend on it to get me there. The 2595 works flawlessly and I have updated it whenever new firmware, maps or software become available. Never had any issues with it.
With that said I'm 67 and the 5"diagonal screen with 480 x 272 pixels is a bit small for my present state.
Thank goodness for the street by street commands which I like when driving my big motorhome.
I have been looking in the past few months at the 2017 Garmin DriveSmart 61 LMT-S because it has 6.95" diagonal screen with 1024 x 600 pixels. I know it has wifi updating as well as traffic from the Smartphone app. which had nothing to do with my selection but it had a bigger screen and higher resolution.
Last night I almost bought one online for $249.99 from a reputable online company which I have done business with over the years but I hesitated and this morning the price was back up to $269.99 like everyone else has advertised.

My loss but I decided to go by the local BestBuy and check the 61 out which I just did and just returned home to write my review.

My Review: (in store only)
It was larger than I expected but still nice screen size in a slim case. The screen had much less of a frame compared to past Garmin's. The touch screen was easy and responded quickly. Screen brightness was set to 100% brightness and I lowered to 70% which I thought was reasonable. Screen was very responsive and whatever the internal processor is worked fast. I did a lot of playing around in the settings and in most cases was similar to past Garmin's. I did find the setting to turn off the Status Bar Warnings that others say you couldn't turn off. School Zones, RR Crossings, Curves, fatigue, etc. So they can be turned off.
Speaker volume and clarity was reasonable but only heard a few things and not any directions.

So with my initial hands on I was not astonished with the $270 GPS. The main thing that stuck out was I expected the screen to be sharper with the 1024 x 600 pixels. I guess when you go to the larger screen it looks like my screen on my Nuvi 2595. The maps seemed to look like comic strips instead of a clear map.
I'm not sure if it was me or just the maps have not gotten to a level of higher resolution what we expect.
Like I said earlier it is a cool sleek gps with a nice large screen. Other than that I wasn't ready to buy and will wait and see if the price comes down a bit or wait until the 2018 model are released. Either way I know I still have a rock solid Garmin 2595 LMT which has never let me down anywhere in the US, Canada or Northern Mexico.
So have I hope I have not disillusioned anyone from buying the Garmin DriveSmart 61 LMT-S.
I'm still on the fence if I really need it or not to be happier. Only time will tell.

Can anyone tell me how much RAM the DriveSmart 61 has or better yet how much unused ram is available to use for other files?
Thanks All
Iggy

Comments

  • Don't know. Mine will arrive Wednesday. I'll try to remember to tell you how much space is available.
  • Boyd 1786 Points
    Garmin never seems to make use of the extra pixels on larger screens, they show the same amount of map details as the older, lower resolution screens. The only advantage is that text should be a bit sharper.

    BTW, you are not using the term "RAM" correctly. RAM is the high speed memory that is used for program execution and number crunching. Garmin has never disclosed how much RAM their devices have and there's no way for a user to determine it. You are talking about flash memory which is the slower mass storage that's used for maps and other data.
  • There is 14GB of internal storage on the DS 61 and a little more than half of that is still unused after installing CN 2018.2 and moving my 200 waypoints file. I'm sure that file is very small.
  • truckinguy 110 Points
    I find the screen is much sharper and brighter now with this DS61. The best yet for Garmin.
  • The 61 does appear to have a brighter screen than the 60. I agree.
  • truckinguy 110 Points
    edited August 22

    The 61 does appear to have a brighter screen than the 60. I agree.

    As you know I can't help but rave about this unit. And it is so cheap.. amazing.. between the way it transfers files to pc to how fast it can move about in menus and navigate around.
    I'm glad they kept the good stuff like JV and Lane Assist as well. This is the smoothest new unit with perfected software to use that I've had in a while from Garmin. So So much better then my Dezel all around. Heading out across usa this weekend for 6 weeks and about 8k miles or more.. all routes loaded with POI along the way within 6 miles of my routes. I can relax with lane assist and see my junctions coming and what to look for and expect ..makes driving very safe. Kudo's to Garmin
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