Looking for a GPS

Discussion in 'Electronics' started by Medic17, Dec 2, 2016.

  1. Medic17

    Medic17 Supporter Supporter

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    I am looking for a GPS.
    Here are my requirements.

    I would like to see a Topo Map.
    Altitude and Compass.
    Under $300
    Simple operation. I think I would prefer push buttons over a touch screen.
    Durability a plus.

    I am not crazy about using my phone any longer.

    Thanks all in advance for the help.
    M17
     
  2. hamanky

    hamanky Scout Vendor Supporter

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    I know you said you wasn't crazy about using your phone, but have you looked at the back country navigator app? I down loaded it and used it on a elk hunt in Idaho this year and it worked great. You can down load maps to use off line witch is what I did. And it only cost me like 14 bucks!
     
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  3. Medic17

    Medic17 Supporter Supporter

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    I used GPS Kit on my IPhone but it kills my battery.
    It works okay, but I do not want to loose my phone while I am out.
     
  4. hamanky

    hamanky Scout Vendor Supporter

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    I understand, I have a Samsung so I was able to switch out batteries and use a charge pack the week I was out.
     
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  5. MountainMan706

    MountainMan706 BCUSA Friend Bushcraft Friend

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    I am looking for one too!!!

    I have an inreach Delorme
    But I only use it as a back-up SOS
    I need to learn how to use it for navigation

    delorme at Amazon
    [​IMG]

    maybe some people who have used it can give some feedback.....
     
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  6. MountainMan706

    MountainMan706 BCUSA Friend Bushcraft Friend

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    the battery on the Delorme last a LONG time
    like 100 hours of use
    stays charged for 30+ days of not being used
    I have well tested the 30 day thing
    I allways check the charge before I hike and I never have to charge it more than once a month
     
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  7. MT_Fin

    MT_Fin Axe'aholic Hobbyist Supporter Bushcraft Friend

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    I have a Garmin 64st, which has proven to be indespensible and indestructible. It's a push button w/external antenna. I use it mainly for hunting w/onxmaps chip but I've also used it a bunch for just general direction and topo applications. It has pretty decent battery life and I've yet to have an issue finding satellites even in dense MT timber. It's been dropped repeatedly and soaked several times and it keeps on trucking. It is more simple than a touch screen and the screen is a little smaller because of it but I prefer the push button.

    It goes on sale at Cabelas all the time, and by using a discounted gift card I bought plus the sale and free ship to store I got mine for $180. Others may have sales etc but I've only really paid attention to Cabelas.


    ******Edit

    Looks like the 64s (same thing just no preloaded topo map) is on sale for $179, so I'm guessing a topo program could be added to it separately and come in under $300
     
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  8. JAY

    JAY Scout

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    I use a Garmin 64s, and you can get different map chips, (I use the hunt chip that shows property lines) the 2 AA batteries will last for about 12 hours when left on and used.. (I carry a flashlight with the same batteries so i can switch out if needed. Got mine at Carbela's. The price is about what you had in mind, Including chips, ect. Garmin also has great tec support.
     
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2016
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  9. Medic17

    Medic17 Supporter Supporter

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    @MT_Fin
    I have been eyeing the 64S /64ST and had questions on the preloaded maps.
    Is the 64ST all of US or just a region?
    Are the pre loaded maps that come with the GPS the same quality of the ones you are supposed to load?
    I was on Topo US and noticed only the North East was a $100 option. So it would seem the ST would be a no brainer over the 64S. Unless quality of maps are different.

    It seems that I can pick up the 64ST Online for about $275.
     
  10. JAY

    JAY Scout

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    check out the onXmaps . thats where i had to get my hunt chip. because of my location. you might get a better idea of whats available, I can't answer as to the pre loaded ones
     
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  11. MT_Fin

    MT_Fin Axe'aholic Hobbyist Supporter Bushcraft Friend

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    The preloaded topo maps on the "t" models are the whole US but it's the 100k maps which are a 1:100,000 scale. The regional Topo US maps are 24k which are a 1:24,000 scale. So it depends on how much detail you are looking for, the 100k maps are fine but the 24k maps are a lot more detailed but then you only get the region.

    Depending on how much memory, you could do eventually load both and have detail for your region and coverage for the US. That gets pricy though if not needed.
     
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2016
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  12. Medic17

    Medic17 Supporter Supporter

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    @MT_Fin
    Your explanation was very helpful. Thanks
     
  13. reppans

    reppans Scout

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    I've had a Garmin 60csx (grandfather of the 64 series) for nearly a decade - well two as the first developed Gremlins after ~4 yrs, but they gave me a refurb for $50. I got the whole USA street, and regional topo, loaded in on a 2 gig card.

    Great unit, waterproof, durable, efficient with batteries (I use Eneloops), and still my primary vehicle GPS for street nav, but I've switched to my IPhone, Gaia App, and pre-downloaded topo maps for backpacking, just to reduce weight, redundancy, and spare batteries.

    Yes the smartphone GPS eats batts like crazy, but I backpack on established/marked trails, use paper maps, and only periodically use my phone GPS to confirm position - it's running GPS less than 15 mins/day.

    You load up their Earthmate App, pre-download the maps, and link with Bluetooth and then can use the pair as a Garmin. I personally leave the Bluetooth on on the Delorme, but turn turn it off/on on the iPhone (since the battery doesn't last as long) - again, only for spot checking and rely on paper maps most of the time.

    FWIW, I budget ~20% battery consumption per 8 hrs day, and extend check/breadcrumb points to conserve batts. It's best for the battery to avoid max 100% charges, and shoot for an average 50% state of charge. So for example, for a 3-day trip, I charge to 80% and come home at 20% (I have a back-up battery bank), and I recharge to 50% for storage in between trips.

    Garmin owns Delorme now, so it's just a matter of time before we see an integrated hand-held GPS/sat comm unit.
     
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  14. MountainMan706

    MountainMan706 BCUSA Friend Bushcraft Friend

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    ummm... I only understood about half of that
    I appreciate you taking the time to type it all out
    I know the Delorme is capable of more than just SOS
    but, I need to take the time to learn the functions....
     
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  15. WY_Not

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    I've had a Garmin eTrax HCx for many years, still going strong. Pros include but not limited to... great reception (even indoors it still picks up signal), uses common batteries (AA), lots of built in functions (altimeter, electronic compass, etc), and fits in a MOLLE grenade pouch ;).

    The base maps weren't bad but I have since added more detailed topos of the areas I frequent.
     
  16. pecktron2000

    pecktron2000 Tracker

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    +1 Garmin eTrex 20
    I've had mine for several years and it always has gotten good reception. I have loaded it with the Topo24 National Parks map expansions. It has a small screen but is easy to read.
     
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  17. Lichen

    Lichen Supporter Supporter

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    I bought the eTrex 20 because it uses AA batteries. Very nice little unit.
     
  18. basher1981

    basher1981 Supporter Supporter

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    I have the 64s..... its solid and has great battery life. goes in the backcountry with me regularly and has been dunked in the stream or river when fishing or stream crossing by accident. i got it like 2yrs ago on sale for $225 at Bass pro. The reception is good even under the forest canopy in the spring and summer.
     
  19. Luafcm

    Luafcm Scout

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    FWIW I've been using a Garmin eTrex Vista HCX for almost 10 years now and it still does everything I need it too(hunting, hiking/canoe, commuting). I'm not super GPS savy, but I've found this unit to be easy to use, lots of resources available, and it's got great battery life (uses 2 AA batteries). It also has a usb port that it can be connected to a computer for easy map management on a pc. The usb port can also be used to power the gps, so if you have a smartphone charger or something similar (solar unit) you can plug straight into the gps and power it if the AA batteries ever run out.

    It's waterproof, has a colour display, a high sensitivity receiver (circa 2006), and an electronic compass. It can even be used for GPS navigation in a car, I've used the nav feature to travel between canada and usa and it calls the turns properly, but I imagine you need to keep the maps updated.

    I'd use this unit over my smartphone in a heartbeat, the smartphone software and battery is super unreliable. I also have a pretty bad case of gear acquisition syndrome, but haven't ever felt the need to replace this gps unit. Can't imagine needing anything else in a GPS except for maybe an emergency beacon.

    These are out of production, but you can still get new old stock for around 150 loonies on evilbay, and used ones for much less.
     
  20. Medic17

    Medic17 Supporter Supporter

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    I picked up the Garmin 64ST at Cabelas for $209.

    It was on sale for $229 and had a code for 10% off and free shipping.
    Thanks @MT_Fin
     
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  21. Medic17

    Medic17 Supporter Supporter

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    I have been playing around with my Garmin 64ST for a little while and it seems well worth the money.
    Nice screen and easy to use.
     
  22. HP500

    HP500 Scout

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    Do those of you with the Garmin 64st still like them? I've had the same Garmin 60CSx for about 10 years now. It still works fine, but I've been thinking of upgrading. Are there any real advantages over my old unit that would justify the expense?
     

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