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Comments

  • tomj03 0 Points
    Wow.
    They haven't finished debugging the Colorados.
    In case both my Go510 and 60CSx go belly up, I know what to look for. :D
    Is there a lock button ?
  • Tim 1456 Points
    I suspect much of the software will be the same from the Colorado to the Oregon making it so when the fix a bug in one it will be fixed in the other. When looking at how they have built the user interface on the Colorado you can tell it was designed with a touch screen in mind. (Big buttons, few small clickable elements.)
  • Marc 201 Points
    For some early review info on the Oregon go here:
    http://garminoregon.wikispaces.com/

    This guys main pastimes seem to be buying GPS devices and geocaching, so he offers an interesting comparison with the Colorado and earlier Garmin products.
  • Tim 1456 Points
    I also have an Oregon in hand if anyone has specific questions.
  • MtnHermit 0 Points
    I also have an Oregon in hand if anyone has specific questions.
    Yes Please.

    Compare the sunlight visability of Oregon to a Nuvi 2x5W with and w/o backlight. If no 2x5W on hand, pick another Nuvi.

    Your subjective comparison would be most helpful. I'm basically trying to understand what makes some LCD's so good in sunlight, others not.

    Thanks
  • Tim 1456 Points
    Compare the sunlight visability of Oregon to a Nuvi 2x5W with and w/o backlight. If no 2x5W on hand, pick another Nuvi.
    The Nuvi has a substantially brighter backlight.
  • Boyd 1735 Points
    I'm basically trying to understand what makes some LCD's so good in sunlight, others not.


    I'm sure it's all about the backlight vs. battery life. The assumption is that you will use the Nuvi primarily while connected to external power. Garmin's older handhelds like the 60csx have transreflective LCD's which are designed to work without backlighting, and I assume the Colorado and Oregon do as well. The Nuvi's don't.
  • Tim 1456 Points
    We could only have hoped that the Colorado and Oregon screens were as visible as the 60Csx and similar models. Unfortunately, they are not.
  • MtnHermit 0 Points
    I'm sure it's all about the backlight vs. battery life. The assumption is that you will use the Nuvi primarily while connected to external power. Garmin's older handhelds like the 60csx have transreflective LCD's which are designed to work without backlighting, and I assume the Colorado and Oregon do as well. The Nuvi's don't.
    Thanks Boyd,

    Actually I did find the answer in another forum. The Nuvi and Oregon use a resistive touchscreen as opposed to a capacitive touchscreen (iPhone). The resistive type has 2 extra film layers, which the light gets to pass through twice for a net 4-times light loss. The advantage, works with gloves.

    So until or if Garmin decides on another touchscreen technology, things don't look good for handheld and touchscreen GPSr's.

    Because of the Nuvi's LiIon battery's higher voltage, the backlight is much brighter than the Oregon. I was on a 13K summit on Thursday, in full sun, and the Nuvi display was readable with just the shade from my head. I think it was at 60% BL.

    Here's a screenshot:
    image

    Also, as Tim said, the Oregon and even the Colorado don't behave as well in sunlight as our Cx's. The Oregon I understand, but not the Colorado.
  • Boyd 1735 Points
    Well the 60csx screen is also very low resolution and only has 8 bit color depth. Perhaps that has something do with it?
  • Boyd 1735 Points
    Thought I would follow up on this dormant thread. Actually I'm surprised there isn't more interest here regarding the Oregon.

    I purchased one myself a couple weeks ago, and I really like it. The 60csx is going up for sale shortly. True, the screen is not as good as I would like. But it's "good enough" IMO, and when you consider all of the other big plusses that this model brings, I think it's a fair trade off.

    The screen is transreflective, like the 60csx, but just not as legible. I have yet to encounter a situation where I couldn't see the map on the screen. Bright sunlight isn't much of a problem, and you might as well just turn off the backlight and save your batteries because it makes no difference. The trick is holding the GPS at the correct angle, and surprisingly I've found that polaroid sunglasses help. They seem to minimize the sun's reflection from the screen when you hold it at the optimum angle.

    Now, mind you, I am talking about bright, direct sunlight here. The following photo gives a pretty fair idea of what to expect. The backlight is OFF in this photo. You really need to turn off the shaded relief feature (DEM shading) to make the screen look best in these conditions. Frankly, I don't think the shading does anything to enhance the usefulness of the GPS, and it's no loss to turn it off. I also think it's a little unfair to compare the screen of the 60csx to the Oregon with shading enabled, since the 60csx can't even do that.

    image

    I would say that the most challenging conditions for the screen would be bright indirect light, because you will need the backlight there and it may be a little weak. But it's certainly still readable.

    But there's just so much else to like about this unit. The user interface is way, way ahead of any other GPS I've used. And it's quite fast to scroll and zoom the map too. Again, turning off DEM shading helps a LOT with this. The touch screen is great. You can easily do just about everything on the Oregon while holding in one hand and tapping with your thumb. The ability to create multiple profiles is a fantastic feature. Each profile contains all the configuration settings you have currently made. So with two screen taps you can have the effect of choosing a dozen or more menu items. Once you learn a bit about the unit, you can create separate profiles for different uses and lighting conditions (with different map detail settings, backlight settings, etc).

    I think they made the right choice with a plastic touchscreen, since it's less fragile than glass and makes the unit more rugged in the field. It has an odd, very soft feeling which is unlike any other touch screen I've used. But it's quite responsive.

    The screen is very high resolution for its size, and I think Garmin really got all this right. The interface is very uncluttered and devotes just about every pixel to the map itself. Zooming/scrolling is much more responsive than any Nuvi that I've used, even with detail set to the max. And holding down the + or - button zooms continuously, so it's easy to zoom way out to a view of many states, scroll to the one you want, then zoom way in to see details.

    This is the first GPS I've used which really makes it easy to "explore the map" while holding it in one hand and zooming/scrolling with your thumb.

    Anyway, that's just a quick update from me. If you have any questions I'll be happy to try to answer them... although don't ask me about geocaching because that has never interested me so I haven't looked at those features :)
  • I just bought an Oregon 400t and have some questions on the new 24k maps.

    1. Are they as good as the National Geographic ones or at least as good.

    2. Can you export the map to the computer or is it just on the GPS.

    3. Can anyone explain the difference between to Northwest card and the West unit. I live in Oregon and travel to Idaho and Washington witch would be better.
  • Hi Boyd,

    Thanks for taking the time to give us a run down of your impression of the unit and it's features it certainly seems like a nice GPS unit in a different package with a lot of new bells and whistles. Now I'm certainly all for new and innovative features but it's still a GPS and to me that is what separates a good GPS from a great one the ability to get and hold a signal in the worst conditions possible. Yet not many people talk of the units capabilities in that area, perhaps it's an over site or since it's a Garmin people figure it has to be good in the field. How do you compare it with your Garmin 60Csx in getting a fix and navigating in the woods or backcountry? If it can get and a hold a signal as good or better than the 60Csx then I would have to say it is a great GPS unit.

    I checked one out in Best Buy today and I was impresses with the features and ease of use but of course I couldn't get a fix in the store so I had no way of trying some of the features or checking out how the unit compares with the 60 Csx at this time. I will say that what I saw so far of the Oregon I liked much better than the Colorado it is certainly a sleeker more compact unit and the touch screen is very easy to use and responds extremely well with any hesitation or lag time. Please let me know what your conclusion has been about the two units abilities in the field I'm very curious.

    Thanks, Roger
  • I just read the review that Marc had a link to on the Oregon and it seems that the reviewer came to the conclusion that the Oregon had some issues with getting a lock on satellites low on the horizon and the accuracy was in the 20 to 30 range.

    Also the track seemed to be more accurate with the 60Csx than the Oregon although the Oregon was still better than the Colorado, apparently that unit suffers from drifting, but it still seems like the SiRF chipset is a great performer in the field.

    Being a tech person I get the attraction of the touch screen and all the other neat stuff that the Oregon has to offer but I still place getting a fix and holding it as my top priority and so far none of the new units, as far as I can tell from reviews have done better than the 60 Csx, unless someone else has had a different experience I think I'll hang on to my 60 Csx.

    Thanks, Roger
  • Boyd 1735 Points
    There have been some comparisons of 60csx and Oregon tracks done, do a google search. For me... I see very little difference when used just hiking around the woods (I have both units). I guess that others hold the 60csx in a little higher esteem than I do. I have used the 60csx extensively to survey my own land, and from day to day there are significant differences in the tracks. But it's all within the spec (which calls for 10 meter accuracy).

    Honestly, I don't think any of the consumer handhelds differ by all that much. Your mileage may vary, but I'm perfectly happy to sell my 60csx and rely on the Oregon from what I've seen. Busy at work these days, but looking forward to spending some more time in the woods with the Oregon later this fall.
  • Tim 1456 Points
    When I compare the tracks generated with the Oregon, versus the 60CSx and other handhelds on the market, I do notice some large discrepancies. The Oregon is not as consistent, and for me takes much longer to get a signal.

    But that doesn't make it a terrible GPS either. It just means that for those functions there are better devices out there. There are many things the Oregon does much better than other devices out there such as its form factor, and obviously the touch screen.
  • Thanks Boyd & Tim for your input as I said I too appreciate the new features and functions that the Oregon has to offer but I'm not willing to drop the 60 Csx in favor of the Oregon if it can't match or surpass the signal acquisition in heavy cover and steep canyons.

    While I understand many variable come into play when comparing units and it's not always an apples to apple comparison but the ability to lock and hold a signal should be of paramount importance especially in a newer more expensive unit.

    I use my GPS mostly for hunting especially in wilderness locations and to me the more accurate the unit the closer I will get to my destination and many times I'm traveling before first light and after dark when visibility is at a minimum and landmarks can be hard to spot.

    I compare it to a pilot flying by instruments alone which is one of the hardest ways to fly and if you don't pay attention or your equipment is off it can be an unpleasant experience to say the least.

    If Garmin is able to combine the strengths of the 60 Csx with the innovations of the Oregon then I would definitely trade in the 60 Csx for a Oregon but for now the 60 does what I need most and that is to hold onto the signal like a pit bull.

    Thanks, Roger
  • gatorguy 224 Points
    Question for our Oregon users. I found this blurb at another site and was curious if this was a new feature, or just something being touted as new for the Oregon:

    The really interesting bit is that from early November, you'll be able to upload OS mapping to the Oregon allowing you to see your exact position on a proper OS map on the screen in front of you. Because the unit uses vector base mapping under the rasterised OS map, it can also plan routes ahead for you, remember where you've been and use a database of information to, say, tell you where the nearest cafe is and take you there turn by turn
  • Boyd

    Anymore updates on the Oregon do you still think it's as good or better than the 60 CSx and what do you think about the PN-40 compared to the Oregon?

    That would really be something if Garmin came out with an update for the Oregon that allowed it to display aerial and satellite images especially with all that screen real estate.

    Also anymore info on the Mac GPS Pro software have you downloaded the updates and kicked the tires.

    Thanks, Roger
  • Boyd 1735 Points
    @Stykbow: Sorry, I have just been way too busy at work to go on any trips recently. When I've had a day off, I've spent it wandering around my own woods and cutting enough firewood to get me through the winter :) Looks like it will be December before I get any sort of meaningful break.

    @Gatorguy: Sorry, I have no idea what the quote means. What is "OS mapping"? Never saw that term before. We know that the Oregon is actually capable of using raster imagery because one of the marine versions features a satellite photo basemap. But to the best of my knowledge, nobody has "cracked" this yet. And that basemap is very crude (low resolution), so it isn't clear whether high resolution raster images would work.
  • Boyd,

    I've been on vacation so I've been doing a little wandering (not as much as I'd like) but I've been keeping tabs on the PN-40 I'm really interested in the mapping capability's looks like it might be a top notch unit.

    I'm still a little bit concerned about the new chipset and the fact that some people are not getting the best fixes or issues with the track data.

    Also I would be interested in your thoughts on MacGPS Pro software with Christmas coming up I might like to add a GPS program to my MacBook Pro that I don't need to boot into Windows for.

    Thanks, Roger
  • Tim 1456 Points
    I'm still a little bit concerned about the new chipset and the fact that some people are not getting the best fixes or issues with the track data.
    I've been testing that chipset in a couple of different devices... here is what I've found.

    In both devices, when I first got them, initial acquisition times would sometimes be really, really bad. But once it got a signal it would hold on tight. With both devices after firmware updates that issue would happen less, but still happens from time to time.

    With one of the devices when I first got it the tracklogs were not very consistent. After a firmware update the issue was fixed. That never happened with the second device.

    So I think the tracklog issues have been largely addressed, but there are still some acquisition time issues from time to time. It is still possible that could be fixed with further updates as well.
  • Thanks for the info Tim do you think it's possible that it's just a firmware glitch that they need to address or a software issue that also can be fixed with an update or patch.

    I've noticed that firmware updates seem to take longer or it seems like it's longer between firmware revisions as opposed to software revisions.

    I also suppose since they don't actually make the chipset they have to work with the chipset manufacture to resolve these issues and come up with a fix to solve the problem.

    My question is just how bad are we talking about, a couple of seconds extra or a couple of minutes, am I going to be standing in the Adirondacks as darkness closes in with a feeling of dread or is it just a minor inconvenience?

    I don't want to go back to the old days of looking for a clearing or open area to get a fix so that I can lose it again once I start walking a trail or bushwhacking through heavy cover.

    Thanks, Roger

    PS Tim once I stood in the same place so long with my Magellan TrailBlazer XL trying to get a 3D fix that Turkey Buzzards started to circle overhead lucky for me it finally did, the buzzards had to settle for some road kill.....
  • Tim 1456 Points
    My question is just how bad are we talking about, a couple of seconds extra or a couple of minutes, am I going to be standing in the Adirondacks as darkness closes in with a feeling of dread or is it just a minor inconvenience?
    Most of the time I turn on either device there is no issue-- it will connect in under 30 seconds. However once in awhile it will take a really long time... 30-40 minutes sometimes.

    Given that during that loooong time the device shows it is listening in on nearly a dozen loud satellites, I suspect it is an issue that can be fixed. I've seen improvements through updates so far, and I expect it to continue with the new chip. It doesn't appear to be a hardware type issue.

    If I really had to take a wild guess... it seems as though if it starts listening to a WAAS satellite before it gets a 3D fix things can get weird. I only say this because disabling WAAS and restarting the device seems to help but I haven't tested enough to determine if that really is the issue.
  • I definitely would wait till they resolve this issue as I've said earlier many times I'm traveling after dark and before first light so a 30 or 40 minute wait is not something I would want to deal with, plus you know that it will happen at the worst time.

    I'm patiently waiting for some in depth reviews on the PN-40 I think that it is a step in the right direction especially for what I do with the GPS and I like the integration between the PN-40 and Topo 7 USA, never can have too many maps or in this case aerial photos and satellite images...

    Yet the touch screen and large real estate on the Oregon plus the different profiles also intrigue me but I keep leaning towards the PN-40 because it seems to be the most like my Garmin 60 CSx but with added features.

    Thanks, Roger
  • i need help with my oregon 200. could you please list the steps in setting a way point and what to i hit to retrace my steps. thanks K
  • Tim 1456 Points
    i need help with my oregon 200. could you please list the steps in setting a way point and what to i hit to retrace my steps. thanks K
    I already responded to your tracks question in the other thread you created about it. To create a waypoint, just tap on the map where you want the waypoint created.
  • Boyd 1735 Points
    Stykbow: seems like we're covering the same ground as another thread around here. As I said there, I bought MacGPS Pro about two years ago and it pretty much did what it promised, but would crash everytime I imported data from my Legend C. There have been several updates to the program since then and I have not purchased any of them nor do I intend to.

    Problem is, there are just so many more gps and mapping programs available on Windows, I don't see the need for a Mac solution when I can boot my MacBook Pro into XP. I'm not real clear on what you expect from this program, or if it will meet your needs. All I can suggest is that you carefully study the info on their website and see what you think. I don't use it anymore myself.

    I have never seen an issue where the Oregon took any longer to lock onto satellites than my other modern GPS units. Certainly nothing like 30 to 40 minutes. Now I have probably only logged 20 hours use on the Oregon so far, so my experience is based on that.

    If you are searching for the "perfect" GPS then I suspect you will get very frustrated. I have owned and used a LOT of units from Garmin, TomTom, Hewlett Packard, Magellan and Mio. They all have their quirks and shortcomings.

    On paper the PN-40 sounds pretty good, but I am just a bit concerned about buying something which is only sold directly via mail order from the manufacturer. If you end up going that way, please keep us updated with your impressions.
  • Tim 1456 Points
    On paper the PN-40 sounds pretty good, but I am just a bit concerned about buying something which is only sold directly via mail order from the manufacturer. If you end up going that way, please keep us updated with your impressions.
    It isn't only sold by DeLorme... REI, Amazon, TigerGPS, J&R, EMS, LL Bean, etc offer it. DeLorme also offers a 30 day no questions asked guarantee. Since the PN-40 is so close in design to the PN-20 (add barometric altimeter, dual processor, tri-axis electronic compass, new GPS chipset) I don't think there will be too many surprises with it.
  • Boyd 1735 Points
    Sorry, my bad. I remember when the PN-20 came out it only seemed to be available directly from DeLorme, and they kept sending me direct mail ads for it.

    Will be interested in hearing user reviews; seems that not many people around here have them (or don't post much about them if they do).
  • Tim 1456 Points
    When they first came out there wasn't a huge production run so they were only available at DeLorme for the first month or two. They are more widely distributed now.

    I suspect we don't see many DeLorme owners around here since they have their own forums that DeLorme team members actively participate in.
  • do i hit tracks and then retrace? will that cover the way I went? thanks karen
  • Tim 1456 Points
    Yes.
  • Hi Boyd,

    I left a couple of messages on the Mac software thread about MacGPS Pro I thought that you just hadn't downloaded the updates I didn't realize it was crashing on you and unstable, my bad.

    My interest in the program is simple I have many Windows based programs dating back to Hanta Yo's Topoguide for Win 95 right up to Topo 7 USA and while I like them all I am really enjoying my MacBook Pro and Leopard so with Christmas coming I thought I might like a program built for the OSX operating system.

    As for going to the website I have a couple of times and while it does give you a good idea of what the software can do I thought by talking to someone that used it might give me a more extensive and unbiased review from a fellow New Jersian..:')

    As for the perfect GPS I agree there is no such thing because everyone has a different opinion as to what options would make the perfect GPS although I think we can all agree that the unit should get a lock quickly and hold onto the satellites in the worse conditions possible.

    Over the years I've own many GPS units myself none were perfect, however, one thing they all did better than the previous models were quicker satellite acquisition and generally (until 12 Channels units became the standard) gave you more channels than the previous models.

    One thing that I have found is that by talking with other GPS users like yourself I can get the skinny on a unit I'm interested before I plunk down my hard earned cash rather than relying on the manufactures advertising or product description, which, rarely ever focuses on their products shortcomings or problems.

    The more I learn about the different units the easier it is for me to decide on the GPS that will be the best fit for me and the applications that I use it for and sometimes by reading these reviews or asking questions I might even find that a GPS unit I didn't or wouldn't normally consider to be "for me" is the best choice.

    Thanks, Roger

    PS Here are the units I've owned over the years: Magellan TrailBlazer XL, Tracker, ColorTrak, SporTrak Pro, Trimble Scoutmaster, and Garmin 60 CSx.
  • Boyd 1735 Points
    I purchased MacGPS Pro and did the free updates to version 6.4.0. Back then, the crashing when importing data from Garmin USB GPS'es was a known bug and the work around was to save the file and quit immediately after importing the data, then re-launch the program. Hopefully that issue has been addressed since my version is dated July 2006. Further updates were not free, and I didn't think they were worth the cost.

    It did allow me to make track maps and to import images from Google Earth and georeference them using known points. This was fine, but I find OziExplorer much better for that kind of thing now (under Windows XP).

    Judging from their site, and periodic e-mails I still receive from them, it seems like they are trying to get you to purchase maps which work with MacGPS Pro. This may be a good solution if you want to stay Mac-based, but it really isn't something which interests me personally.

    FWIW, I have owned and used all of the following:

    Magellan Meridian Gold
    Garmin StreetPilot 2620
    Garmin eTrex Legend C
    Garmin Nuvi 650
    Garmin GPSMap 60csx*
    TomTom 720
    TomTom 920T
    Mio c520
    HP iPAQ 310*
    Garmin Nuvi 5000*
    Garmin Oregon 400T*
    ____________________
    *currently own
  • Hi Boyd,

    Again thanks for the info on MacGPS Pro I'll have to do a litle more research on their site and see if it's worth getting or not.

    So from your previous thread you said that you have not experienced any of the start up problems that some other Oregon users have reported but have you been able to do any more comparison testing with the Oregon and your 60 CSx?

    Also what about the screen are you running with the back light on all the time as some people have said they needed to or can you see it pretty well unless it's direct sunlight. If you are running the back light how is battery life with the light on?

    If you had to narrow it down to three things that you like best about the Oregon besides the touch screen, I think a touch screen would be cool in any GPS, what would they be?

    Also what type of woods navigation are you doing mainly trails, parks, and geocaches or do you do a lot of off the beaten path meandering too?

    Thanks, Roger

    PS I forgot I also own a Lowrance iHunt GPS.
  • Tim 1456 Points
    Stykbow, looks like you are close to making a nice map with DeLorme Topo USA. ;)
  • Boyd 1735 Points
    As I've said a couple times already, I have been too busy at work to wander around with my GPS'es. Honest! I just haven't used the Oregon at all for more than a month, and won't have much chance until December.

    I don't "get" the whole idea of geocaching. I like to wander around the woods, just to get out and get excercise. It can be any combination of trails, roads or just heading through the woods.
  • Thanks Tim I'm learning as I go along the whole layer thing is a different approach for me but I can see how it could be very useful especially to remove and then restore items to see how it looks.

    Boyd sorry your not getting out the woods are really nice, fall colors, crisp air, and with the leaves coming down you can see a lot more, pines can be pretty thick in the spring and summer.

    Let me know if you get out to play at all we can compare notes on your Oregon and the 60, I'm planning on doing a little bow hiking tomorrow if the weather cooperates.

    Take care, Roger
  • Tim 1456 Points
    Thanks Tim I'm learning as I go along the whole layer thing is a different approach for me but I can see how it could be very useful especially to remove and then restore items to see how it looks.
    Yes, I can't tell you how many times I've wanted to throw my GPS through the screen while dealing with Topo USA.... but every time I try to go use something else as an alternative I realize all that complexity = power.

    It can still be frustrating at times, but the more I use it the more I appreciate all that power.
  • Boyd 1735 Points
    Boyd sorry your not getting out the woods are really nice, fall colors, crisp air, and with the leaves coming down you can see a lot more, pines can be pretty thick in the spring and summer.
    Thanks Styk, but not to worry. I live out in the woods and commute daily on little country roads, so I still get plenty of chances to enjoy nature. But I don't really need my Oregon to wander around near my house :). The fall colors were beautiful this year, but that's mostly over in my area now, except for some brown leaves on a few of the oaks.
  • Boyd 1735 Points
    Question for our Oregon users. I found this blurb at another site and was curious if this was a new feature, or just something being touted as new for the Oregon:

    The really interesting bit is that from early November, you'll be able to upload OS mapping to the Oregon
    Hey Gator and Styk: I finally did some googling on this and it is indeed very interesting. "OS Maps" are British Ordinance Survey topo maps. Garmin is releasing the following product in the UK which has scanned raster images of topo maps, and also includes routable roads. Very cool! I wish they would introduce this in the US. Even better, I hope someone "cracks" the format so we can make our own maps...

    http://www.garmin.com/garmin/cms/site/uk/uk/onthetrail/garmin-gb-discoverer

    image

    image
  • gatorguy 224 Points
    I started to give you a link to this the other day. Think they're calling it Discovery. I'll go back and check for it if you like, but it's only on the Garmin Brit page

    EDIT: Never mind Boyd. If I'd bother to read ALL your post I'd notice you already had the link. DUH!

    Anyway, that's what I was referring to a few posts back. So it is new then.
  • Gatorguy are you using the Oregon to navigate in the Everglades I've only flown over and driven by them but from what I've heard it separates the men from the boys out there.

    No doubt you want the most accurate maps you can get on the unit don't want to end up deeper in the Glades when your trying to get out.

    Take care, Roger
  • Boyd 1735 Points
    There's some discussion of these maps on the Yahoo! map_authors group. One of the members over there got the following response from Garmin support....
    > Dear xxxxx ,
    >
    > I heard back from my engineers regarding your question.
    >
    > The new UK Ordinance Survey maps include some raster data. This is
    > nothing new, as both Colorado and Oregon have supported raster (imagery)
    > data all along, notably preloaded in 400i/c models.
    >
    > At this point, we do not provide any other raster based
    > cartography. We
    > do not have plans to support user-provided cartography at this time.
    >
    > The focus is for our customers to focus on the content of map, not how
    > we created it.
    >
    > I hope this has answered your questions.
    >
    > With Best Regards,
    >
    > xxx
    > Product Support Specialist
    >
    > Garmin International
  • Hello everyone,

    I feel bad this is my first post but look forward to learning and enjoying the information on this forum, and possibly making some new friends.

    I purchased the Oregon 200 last week and used it two days in the field. This was my 4th GPS purchase with my last unit being the Etrek Vista with grey scale screen. I sold it because these eyes just couldn' bare the strain anymore. I briefly looked at the Megelland but too many bad reviews took care of that. So after trying the Oregon in the store for two minutes I was sold.

    First the interface on the Oregon is a thing of beauty. Garmin really did a great job. Nothing seems more than a tap or two on the screen away and the screen is very receptive and accurate to your touch. I couldn't believe how fast I was moving from item to item and just knew where everything was. Second, the speed at which the unit picked up satilites was unbelieveable. After my initial satelite fix the unit usually locked on to a fix within 10 seconds everytime, even after traveling 30 miles away! This alone I thought made it worth the loss I took on selling my black and white Vista. At this point I was excited and couldn't wait to go into the field........................Isn' this usually where the bottom falls out.

    A friend had invited me on the yearly Dear Hunting seaon here in my state. I said would love to especially wanting to try out my new GPS. I would be the king of the woods with this bad boy. Hiking this summer would be the best yet.

    I left the unit on all the way to the trailer and marked the trailer as a way point when I got there. In the woods I went. At about .25 miles in I marked a spot for reference. On in I went. At about .75 miles from the trailer I decided I was deep enough for not knowing the area and having a unproven GPS to depend on so I found a nice spot, marked it as a Waypoint and turned the unit off. Everyone said lets meet back at the trailer at lunch so I turned on the unit at lunch time. The unit immediately showed full satelite strength on the meter and showed ready to navigate. I set the trailer for my goto and off I went. For at least two minutes as I travelled what I believed was in the correct direction the GPS showed me going 180 degrees in the wrong direction. Then all of a sudden the arrow popped in the right direction. As I travelled to the trailer the unit would consistantly point 45-90 degrees in the wrong direction then point back the correct way. When I got within seeing distance of the trailer the unit did the same thing. It would point at the trailer then all of a sudden point 45 - 90 degrees in wrong direction, and stay there for 5-10 seconds at a time. Let me say my VISTA NEVER did this. When I got to the trailer my unit still show me being 150 feet away. So I remarked the waypoint after letting the unit sit for around 60 seconds and then ate lunch. Back in the woods I went. To shorten the story the unit did almost the same things on the way out except when I got back to the trailer it showed me being 100 feet away from the first waypoint and 80 feet away from the second waypoint when I was there. Also on the way out the second time it was much brighter out side and I could almost not see the screen. It was more than a strain and completely unacceptable. Didn't matter if the backlight was all the way up or all the way down.

    Conclusion for me. This is without a doubt the most inaccurate unit I have owned, inlcluding units I purchased years ago and I am no GPS beginner. In my opinion you would be better off with a compass. At least you would be heading in the right direction. If I would have been lost in these new woods it would have taken a long time to findly find my way back following the directions this unit gave me and that's assuming I could see the screen.

    For those who would ask, I was running the latest software down loaded from the Garmin site.

    I took Back the Oregon and ordered a Garmin 60CSx. I got my fingers crossed.

    Hitthespot
  • Boyd 1735 Points
    Hitthespot, were you using the GPS in "track up" mode? If so, then you may not be all that happy with the 60csx either. The newer GPS chips can get reception in places where your Vista never could, but they trade off some accuracy in doing so. There seems to be a lot of "noise" in the data stream from these chips, and when you're moving slow (walking) this confuses the unit about what direction you're going. I see the same thing on my 60csx.

    The solution is to set for North Up mode, turn tracking on, then zoom way in. Then you will see exactly what direction you're heading because it will be the opposite of the track. You will still notice the pointer spin around quite a bit out in the woods.

    You can also use the built-in compass, but that's a bit of a pain because it works best on the 60csx when you hold it flat and that's awkward and hard to see. It will also drain your batteries faster when it's on.
  • Boyd 1735 Points
    Boyd

    Anymore updates on the Oregon do you still think it's as good or better than the 60 CSx and what do you think about the PN-40 compared to the Oregon?

    That would really be something if Garmin came out with an update for the Oregon that allowed it to display aerial and satellite images especially with all that screen real estate.
    Styk (and others)... if you're still following this thread, I finally have a bit of news. I haven't learned a way to use raster images yet on the Oregon, but I decided to dig in and make my own Garmin high resolution maps of the New Jersey Pine Barrens. I won't be ready to release them for a little while, but here are some full resolution screenshots which show the Oregon's screen is a big plus. The image on the left is my homebrew map and the one on the right is the built-in Garmin US Topo 2008:

    image

    Now if you don't think that "pixels matter", here are a couple screenshots of my map on the 60csx :)

    image

    Since this is rather specific to Southern New Jersey I won't go into much detail here, but if you're interested in the maps please see the following over at NJPB:

    http://forums.njpinebarrens.com/showthread.php?t=5886
  • Hitthespot, were you using the GPS in "track up" mode? If so, then you may not be all that happy with the 60csx either. The newer GPS chips can get reception in places where your Vista never could, but they trade off some accuracy in doing so. There seems to be a lot of "noise" in the data stream from these chips, and when you're moving slow (walking) this confuses the unit about what direction you're going. I see the same thing on my 60csx.

    The solution is to set for North Up mode, turn tracking on, then zoom way in. Then you will see exactly what direction you're heading because it will be the opposite of the track. You will still notice the pointer spin around quite a bit out in the woods.

    You can also use the built-in compass, but that's a bit of a pain because it works best on the 60csx when you hold it flat and that's awkward and hard to see. It will also drain your batteries faster when it's on.
    I no longer have the unit so I can't try it with North Up, However, I can tell you I am using the 60SCx in Track Up mode and not having any problems. I have used the 60SCx in the exact same places now as the Oregon, including the hunting area, and can I tell you there is no comparison between the two. The Oregon was consistantly 80 to 150 feet off the waypoints when I arrived and the 60SCx is usually around 0-1 foot but has never been more than 4 feet off. Maybe my Oregon was just way out of specification or had a problem. I hate to keep sounding like a broken record but MY Oregon was useless. When I'm in the woods looking for a path 3 feet wide if I'm 4 feet from it I will find it. But, if I am 150 from it I might as well have blinders on. The Oregon was just way too dangerous for me. I cannot say enough good about the 60SCx. It is a fantastic unit. More than I hoped for. I would love to see this unit with the touch screen interface. (assuming you can see it.)

    I would also like to state that when I took the Oregon unit back for a refund the two sales clerks who helped me stated that even the Garmin rep told them there were problems with these units, not the least of which they said was not being able to read them outside. Of course this is all just hear say from them, but, I can tell you my experiences are factual.

    If Garmin reads this and wants to send me an Oregon for testing I would be willing to give it another chance. I would report my findings here. I would retract all my statements If I did just happen to purchase a faulty unit. However, I got a feeling they know the Oregon is inferior to the 60SCx and that just isn't going to happen.

    Thank You

    Bill
  • Boyd 1735 Points
    If Garmin reads this and wants to send me an Oregon for testing I would be willing to give it another chance.
    :lol: Now that's funny!

    All I can say is that your experience is different from mine. I've had a 60csx for a couple years and an Oregon for several months. I am not disappointed by the Oregon. But of course, if you don't like a product then you should vote with your wallet.

    As far as always being within one to four feet on the 60csx... you've been lucky. The 60csx spec calls for 10 meter accuracy. So if you had a circle with a 20 meter diameter (66 feet) and the actual location is at the center, you could fall anywhere within that circle and the 60csx would still be within specs. That means that any two readings could vary by 66 feet and be within specs.

    I have used the 60csx a lot in an attempt to "survey" my property, and can assure you that there is often a big difference in tracks and locations when covering the same ground. Don't get me wrong, it's a great unit - a real classic - and I'm sure it will serve you well. But there are simply no consumer GPS'es that will give you repeatable one to four foot accuracy.
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