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Was looking at getting a Garmin Nuvi 500 or 550 because they are waterproof and I can't afford a Zumo. Does anybody have one and what do think about them. Any input would be greatly appreciated.
 

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Spend some time on Garmin's site using the "compare" feature. Compare them against the Zumo 550 and 660 to see what the diffs are.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
The only other ones that are waterproof that I see are the Zumo. They have mp3 and bluetooth which I don't care that much about but the main thing is about $500.00 more.
 

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The only other ones that are waterproof that I see are the Zumo. They have mp3 and bluetooth which I don't care that much about but the main thing is about $500.00 more.
MP3 and BT may not be important, but what about being able to load and save routes, waypoints, etc. ? Garmin often omits useful features in lower priced models. I'm not saying the Nuvi models you chose are like this, but some Nuvi models definitely don't have these things.

My point is to go through the comparison lists item by item before you settle on a model. Only you can say what's important or not. I'm just pointing out the tools I use when making choices and I own at least half a dozen Garmin models.
 

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MP3 and BT may not be important, but what about being able to load and save routes, waypoints, etc. ? Garmin often omits useful features in lower priced models. I'm not saying the Nuvi models you chose are like this, but some Nuvi models definitely don't have these things.

My point is to go through the comparison lists item by item before you settle on a model. //
They can do that. But the Zumo comes with the CD: the Nuvi does not.

Simple comparison. The 500 has topo and road maps of the lower 48 states. The 550 has road maps of the 48 states and Canada.


I have a 500 as well as a Zumo. If it had a headphone jack and MP3 player it would trump the Zumo because of the topo maps and form factor. If listening to directions isn't important to you, it's an excellent all-around choice: I've used mine hiking, boating and biking as well.

I bought the Garmin motorcycle mount for it on Amazon.

https://buy.garmin.com/shop/shop.do?pID=27931

To put it in perspective, I used my Zumo for two years before I ever hooked up the earphones. I know plenty of people who listen to an iPod and just use the GPS for visual reference. I think it's a pretty good choice and has a number of advantages towards the used StreetPilot 2nnn units folks are buying.

What we need is a hack to add a headphone jack from the speaker output....



How much of a GPS whore am I? At work or home we have the eTrex Legend, Summit, Nuvi 205, 260, 360, 500, 660, 765T, and Zumo. We sold off the 2610, 2720, and 2820.
 

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How much of a GPS whore am I? At work or home we have the eTrex Legend, Summit, Nuvi 205, 260, 360, 500, 660, 765T, and Zumo. We sold off the 2610, 2720, and 2820.
You're as bad as I am, but not worse. :yikes: The model numbers vary a bit, but there are just as many, so, uhm, get lost! :green_lol:

My one non-Garmin is the Delorme PN-40 if you don't count the iPhone and iPod Touch and an old Palm Pilot GPS sled or two, not to mention all the old stick it on the rooftop of the cage receivers that I'm sure are still around somewhere.
 

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I recently bought the Nuvi 550 and I am very happy with it. When you go on-line at Garmin to register they give a free upgrade to City Nav 2010 which covers, Canada, Cont US, Hawaii, Alaska, PR and the Bahamas.

The 550 is clear and auto detects for night or day mode, lasts 8 hours withour power and is easy to use on the fly. It would have been a plus to have audio but I don't really need it as it sits under the windshield above the guages and is very easy to read at a glance (Strombone's ram mount bracket for use with the Madstad windshield bracket).

The cradle is well made and holds the Nuvi on all 4 sides with a secure flip down top clamp down. The USB plug stores in the cradle when the Nuvi is removed and is easy to plug in to the Nuvi just before fitting the Nuvi in the Cradle. I ordered the cradle on the West marine Web site for $19.99 delivered to the closest store...no shipping costs and it wa there in a few days. Everywhere else wants $49.99 for the same cradle (pictured in an above thread)
 

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Not sure what you mean by routes. It does the same as any other Garmin Nuvi with City Navigator. Where to? Where am I? etc. It can also load topo maps and Bluechart charts as well. It is waterproof submersible for 30 minutes so is ideal for use on a bike or boat.
 

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ie you can program in a trip basically it saves POI and connects them so you can select 5 different downs and it routes you one to the next. Trip planning I guess. On my 760 garmin it dose it.
 

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Apaprently you can pre-program a route in Mapsource (Mapsource downloads free with the City Nav 2010 upgrade) and load it. The most I have done is add an address as a stop before my final stop just using the Nuvi itself. But I have not had it long enough to do route planning with Mapsource yet.
You may want to check Garmin's web site and make sure it does what you want.
 

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Discussion Starter #12 (Edited)
Just wanted to thank everyone for their great input. Went ahead and ordered the Nuvi 500 from The GPS Store today for 219.95. Called West Marine and they the motorcycle mount ordered for me for 20.00 and no freight, can't hardly wait. Thanks stromtech for the info about West Marine
 

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You are welcome...but I can't take the credit. Someone on another forum pointed me to West Marine....and according to GPScity West Marine is selling the mount below their cost so they would not price match.
 

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Just wanted to thank everyone for their great input. Went ahead and ordered the Nuvi 500 from The GPS Store today for 219.95. Called West Marine and they the motorcycle mount ordered for me for 20.00 and no freight, can't hardly wait. Thanks stromtech for the info about West Marine
I have the Nuvi 500 also and like it alot so far, have only had it a short while and am still learning. It is my first GPS ever.

Just wondering, how are you going to mount the unit to the bike?
 

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The Garmin cradle kit comes with a ram mount ball that attaches with bolts to the cradle. Or you can attach a handlebar clamp or whatever you wish. I use a ram mount with the Strombone bracket under the windshield.
 

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Just wanted to thank everyone for their great input. Went ahead and ordered the Nuvi 500 from The GPS Store today for 219.95. Called West Marine and they the motorcycle mount ordered for me for 20.00 and no freight, can't hardly wait. Thanks stromtech for the info about West Marine
That's a good deal there, I might have to grab it. I was planning to get one at REI, they have them on sale for $225 starting tomorrow (friday) through the 18th.
 

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I have the 500 and love it. I did turn off the topo maps however. They come up whenever you switch from 3D to north up. I found the topo lines annoying. You can uncheck them in the map data section, or whatever it's called. You can always turn them back on. I got the Ram cradle for it, but the Garmin cradle is probably a better choice. You can use it with gloves on too. Waterproof to the same specs as the Zumos. I got mine for $200 through Dell Home with a coupon code, now expired, that I got off of passwird.com. I would probably get the 550 if I had to do it again because I don't need the topo and it has more street map coverage as someone mentioned.
 
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