Tips for purchasing GPS

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by jkaz, Aug 9, 2009.

  1. jkaz macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2004
    Location:
    Upper Mid West
    #1
    Hi,

    I'm interested in entering the world of handheld gps devices.

    I'm really not sure of the ins and outs of what is all capable, but if I can get directions to my destination, ask the device what restaurants are nearby and get basic travel information, I would call that a good start.

    One concern I have come across so far is the idea that maps have to be purchased on various models and that they aren't cheap.

    Any help is much appreciated.

    Thanks,

    Jeff
     
  2. dukebound85 macrumors P6

    dukebound85

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2005
    Location:
    5045 feet above sea level
    #2
    im a fan of garmin and turn by turn directions with text to speech
     
  3. jkaz thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2004
    Location:
    Upper Mid West
    #3
    thank you for the response.

    One thing I have heard about garmin is that you have to buy maps for it.

    Is there anything you can tell me about this? I have exactly zero knowledge about the ramifications of buying or not buying maps.

    Thanks,

    Jeff
     
  4. yg17 macrumors G5

    yg17

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2004
    Location:
    St. Louis, MO
    #4

    Garmin units come with maps preloaded (the cheaper models just cover the 48 states in the continental US, the more expensive models cover the entire US and Canada). You'll either get one with the 2010 maps, or you'll get one with the 2009 maps and will be able to download a free update to 2010 (this was the case with me when I got my Nuvi 765). You do have to buy updated maps if you want them. It's probably not necessary to buy new maps every year unless you do a lot of driving all over the place. I don't road trip that often, so I plan on updating maps every other year, if even that often.
     
  5. dukebound85 macrumors P6

    dukebound85

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2005
    Location:
    5045 feet above sea level
    #5
    no it comes preloaded with maps

    you can however buy updtated maps as the years go on

    for instance, mine came with the 2008 maps and I now have the option to buy the 2009 maps. All it does is give you the more up to date streets (due to construction and what not)

    However, I do not plan on updatting maps as really, most of the streets have been there for a while you know?

    I have a garmin nuvi 360 and I like it alot

    way more convientent when you are in a new city than using like google maps printouts lol. cool thing is if you get lost, all gps devices will re route you

    do get one with text to speech though. what this means is instead of saying "turn right in 300ft" it will say "turn right on jay street in 300ft" or whatnot
     
  6. jkaz thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2004
    Location:
    Upper Mid West
    #6
    So any garmin I buy will be ready to go out of the box. And as time goes on, if I want my device to have the most current information available, I will have to buy it. Sounds reasonable.

    Thanks for the help, any other comments you might have I would be happy to hear it.

    Wonder about the major brands and models. Would like to find the "Apple" brand of hand held gps.

    Thanks,

    Jeff
     
  7. dukebound85 macrumors P6

    dukebound85

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2005
    Location:
    5045 feet above sea level
    #7
    garmin and tom tom are the big ones

    imo, you cant go wrong with a garmin nuvi
     
  8. jkaz thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2004
    Location:
    Upper Mid West
  9. MTI macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2009
    Location:
    Scottsdale, AZ
    #9
    For car nav, I went with the large screen Sony (Uses Navigon Maps) for the screen size. It does the "which lane should I be in" view; POI with logos; has a built in gyro for when you temporarily lose sat signal (tunnels, tall buildings); bluetooth; RDS traffic; MP3 & jpeg via Memory Stick.
     
  10. yg17 macrumors G5

    yg17

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2004
    Location:
    St. Louis, MO
    #10
    I do need clarification on this.

    There are handheld GPS units out there but those are mostly used for outdoor activities such as hiking and don't really have detailed maps or give turn by turn directions. But if by handheld you mean one for the car that hangs off the windshield and gives you directions, shows maps and lets you search to see what restaurants and whatnot are around you, then yes, the Nuvi line is what you're looking for. The Nuvis are handheld in the sense that they're portable and can run off a built in battery and you can easily move it from one car to another, but they really don't serve a huge purpose outside a car.
     
  11. jkaz thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2004
    Location:
    Upper Mid West
    #11
    I'm looking for something I can use as my own personal device when traveling in small group. So if I am not in one of the driving seats I can monkey with it. Also would like to be able to plug it into vehicle power adapter.
     
  12. SpaceKitty macrumors 68040

    SpaceKitty

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2008
    Location:
    Fort Collins Colorado
    #12
    I would also go with Garmin. Th main problem with Garmin is they sell over 20 different models and each one has different features. Some have free traffic while others require a yearly fee. Some have lane assist. Some have MSN Direct which costs a yearly or one lifetime fee. A few more expensive ones have speech recognition. They kind of got cheap and no longer include carrying cases. Some have bluetooth which allow you to make phone calls from your GPS, very cool if your GPS has speech recognition like the iPhone 3G S. The more expensive ones have a few extra GBs of storage space to allow you to store music and photos. Mine also has a card slot and I have a 4GB card in mine. My GPS has MSN Direct which offers gas prices, weather, local events, movies, news, flight status, movie times and more. The MSN Direct service is provided through the power cord which contains the receiver. This allows the MSN Direct service to be used with other MSN Direct Garmin GPS units. Some have removeable batterys also.


    The prices range from just over $100 to over $800.
     
  13. wvuwhat macrumors 65816

    wvuwhat

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2007
    #13
    While I can't help you too much with the model decision, when you know what you want point your browser to: www.slickdeals.net It's a forum where people post deals, and it's very active. Should save you some money, if you can wait until a deal for your unit comes up.
     
  14. jkaz thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2004
    Location:
    Upper Mid West
    #14
    thanks again for all the input, it's really helping.

    from what I can gather now, I'm thinking the mapping handheld might be what i'm looking for. I want something that I can take with me everywhere.

    Anyone have any thoughts or comments? Also, please keep adding personal experiences with garmin and models and features you like or wish you had.

    Thanks again,

    Jeff
     
  15. dukebound85 macrumors P6

    dukebound85

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2005
    Location:
    5045 feet above sea level
    #15
    a mapping handheld? like for when you walk around?

    if so, then it wont work for car navigation

    do you want a car navigation device or a trail gps?

    garmins are portable and are car navigation. you can hold it in the backseat or whatever. you dont have to be a driver to mess with it and you can take it from car to car. they wont be good for walking around though
     
  16. miamiracing macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2007
    Location:
    Arlington,VA ; Nashville,TN
    #16
    everybody in my family has a Tom Tom and all of them are happy with it.

    can't go wrong with them.

    i have build in gps in my infiniti but i do use my tom tom sometimes specially since it shows me where all the speeding cameras are and red light cameras :D
     
  17. jkaz thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2004
    Location:
    Upper Mid West
    #17
    i'm looking at: GPSMAP® 60CSx

    it's listed as a trail product and says it has "Automatic routing (turn by turn routing on roads)"

    but it doesn't have built-in memory, so would that mean I have to always have an sd card in there?
     

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