Recommend a GPS?

Discussion in 'Geocaching' started by xRangerx, Feb 17, 2013.

  1. xRangerx

    xRangerx Woods wandering bird nerd Supporter Bushcraft Friend Bushclass I

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    I read through the GPS thread and I didnt see one that popped out immediately as being the most popular. I am interested in starting out Geocaching and was wondering what GPS you all would recommend. Preferably not one that is extremely expensive! I will shop around for a used one first and see what I can find though!

    Thanks and looking forward to seeing recommendations!
     
  2. Shnick

    Shnick Bushwhacker Bushclass II

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    I found out the hard way that the new Etrex 10, 20 and 30 are not wired to work with the geocaching.com plugin.
    For some reason Garmin wants you to go to opencaching.com and use that site. They own part of it so...
    I think it sucks.

    The old Etrex Legend HcX is a great one, I used it for a long time and got used to it real quick.
     
  3. oldfatguy

    oldfatguy Tracker

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    In July 2012, I bought a Garmin GPSMAP 62s, the newer version of the 60. It is a huge step up! I added a 16gb memory card and maps as well.

    First of all, this one has a triaxial compass. Like the 60, when you are moving (faster than 10fps), it determines your direction from the satellites, but when you are going slower (walking), the electronic compass takes over. With the 60, you had to hold it flat and level and it did pretty good. With the 62, you can hold it at any angle.

    This one also cycles up and calculates routes much faster. This one comes on, calculates a full route in a matter of seconds, whereas the 60 might take up to 4-5 minutes from a cold start.

    You can also add topo maps, tell it to route through the area trying to keep at the same elevation. With the right types of maps, it can also route along a trail.

    It calculates sunrise, sunset, times till each and adjusts these based on your current location.

    Geocahcing is much easier with this one as well. You can download the full cache description and hints to the GPS.

    The accuracy of the 62 is a step up from the 60. When caching, the 60 did very well, even in heavy cover, getting me to within 20 feet of the cache. The 62 gets me right on top of the cache, almost always within 5 feet, even in heavy cover, trees. The accuracy of the 62 is also noticeably better in rain and overcast skys.

    Both are waterproof. Garmin makes a couple of models with touchscreens, but I decided against those. When you are using it with gloves (or cold hands), the touch screens are a bit more tricky, where as the buttons on the 62 seem to work better for me.
     
  4. oldsoldier

    oldsoldier Guide Bushclass I

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    I have owned a 60cx since they came out. I have almost 400 finds with it. I absolutely love it. Ease of use, easy setup, color, topo. I chose this model over the csx one, because i couldn't justify the extra money for a built in compass. I carry one all the time, and i don't have a lot if faith in an electronic one. If you choose between the two, get the cx model. You will not be disappointed

    Using my galaxy s2 via tapatalk, because I am too lazy to find a computer
     
  5. oldfatguy

    oldfatguy Tracker

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    I guess I would disagree with you about choosing a GPS for geocaching without an electronic compass. The GPSr can determine direction from satellites when you are moving over 10fps. Slower than that, and it switches to the electronic compass. Without this feature, you don't get a fix on the direction you need to go to find the cache. Having found over 1,700 geocaches, I could consider this to be a necessity for geocaching.

    I think you might be a little confused about the Garmin model numbers. There is the 60, 60C (which adds color), 60CS (which adds the electronic compass) and the 60CSx (which adds the barometric altimeter).
     
  6. oldsoldier

    oldsoldier Guide Bushclass I

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    Ah, maybe i was confused then-i have the cs-there is an electronic compass in it, but, i may have been of the understanding that it worked off the satellites, rather than an internal compass? And added the barometer. Its been so long, i really don't recall-out does have a compass, i was just under the importation that it worked differently between the two models. But i honestly don't remember now-will be googling it shortly though

    Using my galaxy s2 via tapatalk, because I am too lazy to find a computer
     
  7. oldsoldier

    oldsoldier Guide Bushclass I

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    Just looked the models up, I guess the only difference is the chip? And it didn't look like you can but the older model anymore. Just the newer one, which I saw for $320. But, I love mine. It's a solid device, and works great!

    Sent from my GT-P6210 using Tapatalk 2
     
  8. oldfatguy

    oldfatguy Tracker

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    I had a 60CSx for years and it worked great. My son now uses it and it is still going strong.
    There was a noticeable improvement when going to the 62, but then again, it is 5-6 years newer technology.

    And you are correct, Garmin phased out the 60 series when the 62 came out.
     
  9. cobbsteve14

    cobbsteve14 Scout

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    For the price of the basic garmin I got a delorme and it came with very detailed topo maps of north america great mapping software and a year worth of free downloads from their site. Gps works awsome to.
     
  10. captainamer

    captainamer Scout

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    60CSx is what i have maybe someday will get newer but now problems yet flawless so far
     
  11. OL' OutLaw

    OL' OutLaw Guide

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  12. Oregon Jim

    Oregon Jim Tracker

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    Iphone 4 with Topo Maps App

    Allows free USGS map downloads and works offline. My Garmin Etrex Vista can't begin to pull in signals like the iphone and it's screen and pinch zoom makes it handier than any GPS I've seen.


    EDIT: woops! didn't notice this was for Geocaching, but it's still a good option. :44:
     
  13. xRangerx

    xRangerx Woods wandering bird nerd Supporter Bushcraft Friend Bushclass I

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    Thats a great idea though Jim! I will have to see if my phone has the capabilities!
     
  14. Desert Drifter

    Desert Drifter Scout

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    I've got a Garmin Oregon 450T....excellent GPS receiver. Read the reviews about it. They're going for around $270 now days. Which ever one you decide with...as soon as you get it login to the company, register your unit and down load the recent upgrades. It'll save you some headaches.

    'drif
     
  15. jkswaff

    jkswaff Scout

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    I just got my first. Not into Geocaching so its strictly a way finder whilst hiking which here in SE Texas means wandering through forest. I got a Garmin eTrex20 as it had most of the whistles and bells for a 'reasonable" price. So far I am really happy with it. Someone noted above that the compass with this one only works if you are moving, but you do not need to move very far or fast for it to kick in. I would say, however that whatever GPS I had I would always carry a real compass - no worrying about batteries running out. I also find a paper map of the general area is also worth having because however you zoom in or out with the on-board map, its still a tiny screen. With the eTrex I also got the 1:24K Texas map. I would say essential. The base map is OK for knowing what state you are in (ok its not that bad!), but definitely no good for hiking. One feature I like is the Waypoint marking. Already have a number of fat wood stumps recorded.
     
  16. almac

    almac Scout

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    +1 the 60csx is a great gps. i've had mine for years. you can find them on ebay for under $200
    http://www.ebay.ca/ctg/Garmin-GPSMAP-60CSx-Handheld-GPS-Receiver-/78389307
     
  17. rolandsilvajr

    rolandsilvajr Banned Member Banned

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    Garmin Oregon 450t here too. Love it
     
  18. Stavka

    Stavka Banned Member Banned

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    I use a Garmin 60 csx for work, upgraded with a resource map.
    For walking on a grid or lay-out I use a real compass.
     
  19. bharen

    bharen Guide

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    I've been using a DeLorme PN-60 for the past two years and really like it, but right now I can't recommend any of their units.

    I'm not encouraged by what I see going on with DeLorme. Their hardware development seems to have stalled, they no longer sell any of their GPS receivers through their on-line store and most Amazon retailers are out of stock. Their most recent update to Topo North America (v. 10) was 'meh' by most standards, with few updates to the mapping software and only minor updates to map content for US-based users. I'm not sure if it's because DeLorme is focusing on their InReach program, their emerging professional GIS side or the company is simply in trouble. Sad, because their PN-series receivers were (and still are) great designs that were as close to 'expedition grade' as you'd find with a commercial unit.

    I tested an Garmin eTrex 20 not long ago and was quite impressed. Small, lightweight, very fast satellite fix (using both the GPS and the Russian GLONASS systems) and the joystick interface is surprisingly well done. The only drawback was the lack of included map coverage.
     
  20. GotTheCrohns

    GotTheCrohns Tracker

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    To the OP, I too have just started to get into geocaching with my young kids. After researching for about a week and watching lots of reviews I decided on a Magellan explorist 310. I can not comment yet on how well it works as my wife is holding hostage until my birthday. :17:
     
  21. JohnnyC

    JohnnyC Banned Member Banned

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    I'm a big fan of the Garmin 62 series (whichever fits your needs best) and really like it. It's easy to read, easy to navigate the device itself, but it is slightly larger.

    Something else that's cheaper, but would require a little more work on the front end, is the Foretrex line, specifically the 401. It's small, lightweight, you can wear it on your wrist and several manufacturers make other mounting styles for it. You'd just have to input your coords prior in the Basecamp program as it doesn't have a map. It's good practice for creating routes and such using topos that you then dump to the gps, or just put the cache in as a waypoint and navigate on your own. The built-in compass works well, and it as a ton of other functions. I even took mine skydiving!

    What I really like about it is that it's very unobtrusive. I see a lot of people get sucked into their GPS and end up missing a ton of stuff. It's super easy to check your bearings, and get started again without lots of fuss or fiddling. In fact, I only carry my 62 during hunting season because I have boundary topo maps. I use my 401 and only turn on my 62 to double check that I'm on the right side of property lines. I know this doesn't specifically relate to geocaching, but I've found that many of the same ideas apply.

    Skydive GPS, Elev, and speed log
     
  22. jstultz

    jstultz Tinder Gatherer

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    i have the garmin rino 650 and love it
     
  23. Fish N Chips

    Fish N Chips Tracker

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    I second the Gamrin Rino. They are great, I have a 120 and a 530. They are great for hunting, geocaching, hiking, ect. I prefer the newer color models for ease of viewing. They really come in their own when all your buddies have them. I like having the radio and weather channel in mine. I give my wife the frequency I will be on in case I run into trouble and search and rescue has to look for me, or to let them ping my location. I keep my 120 as a loaner now, but have used it on the ocean, kayak, hunting, hiking, in the snow, ect. It has not failed me yet!
     
  24. possumcop

    possumcop Tracker

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    My brother and I use the Rino 110 because of its multi-purpose value. A compass is all we really need to navigate the areas we frequent IF we even need one at all. The GPS system is just an added bonus to the 2-way radio for us.
     
  25. Ugly_Barbarian

    Ugly_Barbarian Scout

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    eTrex Legend HCx

    Between 07 and 09 I purchased my Legend HCx because in 05 my gunner put a big scratch in the screen of my previous legend (the blue one, don't remember the model name). I didn't think going overseas with one having a giant scratch in the screen that looked like an elevation line or a road was a great idea.

    You can't tell where I've been with it(other than the Surama Eco Lodge), and I couldn't tell you how few geocache sites I had marked in it because at the end of my more recent trip to Afghanistan the MP Customs agents erased it and the 4 gig micro SD chip I had installed.......now my GPS has a memory worse than me.

    I like Garmin products in general, and I like the etrex series as a whole, but the reality is that you need to read through a bunch of websites and see what all the possibilities are for what you will or won't get with each model (most brands have a comparison checklist to get you to buy whatever has the most doodads you will never use). Do you travel on the ocean? some models can take maps for that and handle other nautical stuff (don't ask me what, I'm an Army guy, not a navy or marine type). Do you mountain climb? you definitely want an altimeter and barometer if you do, but for people camping in flat places just a few hundred feet in variation in their whole area of possibility those might be $15 of doodads that they feel are not needed. Also there are things like the rhino that combine your GPS and walkie talkie, if you go in groups this might be the way to go (military reminder-disable the find a friend portion when in country because it works both ways). Finally, how is your eye sight? There are models that have bigger screens than others; if your uncorrected eyesight is bad you may want to get a model you can read without your glasses even if you always wear them (as a safety measure because if you don't, you will break your glasses).

    again, most brands have a comparison chart of each of their models, figure out which one of each brand you would buy if you only considered that brand and you will be left only comparing three or four items, each with a list of items it does and does not have (specially if you printed those out from the individual brands).

    And as someone else already stated, you should also always carry a real map of the area and a compass, batteries die, electronics drop themselves in the water, a T-rex eats the guy holding it.....if it can go wrong it will..... and, two is one, one is none.....

    good luck with your new toy....
     
  26. jonking66

    jonking66 Tracker

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    I have the Magellan 610 and I love it. Last summer when we decided to try Geocaching we bought the cheaper 310 not knowing if we would even enjoy 'caching much. We enjoyed it so much that within days we returned it and bought the Explorist 610. Having used one without (310) the compass and one with (610) I will say you can find Caches without it, but it is WAY easier with one built in. We just went today a little chilly buy still great fun.
     

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