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edited November -1
What is the most sunlight readable GPS
when its a car unit, is sunlight a REAL issue ? on a normal sunny day driving, is the TOMTOM actaully unreadable or hard to see? help me understand the sun issue.
The glare on my TomTom 720 does make it difficult to read the screen on sunny days . A sunshield helps somewhat. TT's colours are not as intense as are Garmin's so that doesn't help but picking night colours with the brightness set high does make things better.
You will find varying opinions on this. The Garmin screens are generally brighter, but
brightness isn't everything
. Every GPS will wash-out in bright sunlight at certain angles. The Garmin probably stays visible
longer in those bright sun situations-- but not by much. While driving with TomTom and Garmin devices on my dash running at the same time the amount of time where one is visible and another isn't is rare.
Brightness can also have drawbacks too-- the Garmin is very bright when looked at from above, not as bright when looked at from below. Not a big deal during the day... but at night even with the brightness set at the lowest setting, since the Garmin looks brighter from above there is a terrible reflection on my windshield which creates a big blind spot.
You might also want to check out
this similar thread
Perhaps sunlight readability may not even be the bigger issue for some users. As I posted in another thread a few minutes ago, I prefer the Garmin display since I now need reading glasses
The Garmin nuvis use a larger font, bolder lines and more contrasting colors on the route display compared to the TomTom's. Allowing more data on a TomTom screen really does restrict the size of some of the lettering in data fields. Personally I can't make out most of it without glasses. Not much of an issue for me on nuvis.
My Tomtom 920 is about 90 - 99% unreadable on a very bright day. It is not just hard to read, it is impossible. I did try a sun shield which helps somewhat but it is like looking at the gps through a tunnel and even then it is still not easy to read.
Screen polarization is also an important issue if you wear Polaroid sunglasses. I have prescription sunglasses, and Garmin has the polarization 90 degrees WRONG on my Nuvi 5000. Not sure if other models are also like this. But when I put on my sunglasses, the screen gets noticeably darker - not good on a bright day. If I rotate the Nuvi 90 degrees (so it's in "portait" rather than "landscape" orientation), the screen gets bright again. But obviously I don't want to look at the screen sideways.
I really don't understand why they have this wrong. Not sure if other Nuvi's are like this, but I've seen the complaint before. If you have polarized sunglasses, try a quick test: turn the screen 90 degrees and see if it gets darker or brighter.
I also have a Magellan Maestro 5310 which is a 5" screen like the Nuvi 5000. It does not suffer from the polarization problem: Magellan got it right. In fact, that is a really bright screen which is very readable in direct sun.
My TomTom 920t was a problem in direct sun, but I certainly wouldn't call it a deal breaker. It just would have been nice if it was brighter.
I recently bought an Oregon 600 and the screen is crystal clear and very readable in the bright sun that SoCAL is famous for.