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Discussion Starter #1
There seems to be a million choices with GPS. The more I read, the less sure I am about which one would be the best. My question, is there a sort of epic GPS that everyone is using and happy with. I guess I am kinda looking for the vstrom of GPS - maybe not the best, but darn close, with a super bang for your buck.

jordan
 

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Your first decision is probably going to be deciding between a handheld and a dashmount.

The handheld, about cellphone size, is the most versatile. By this I mean it can be removed from the bike and used elsewhere.

The dashmount has a large screen but is only really useful in a car or other vehicle. It can be moved from car to car easily.

My two cents: I'd get a Garmin Rino. It's a handheld with a built in GMRS (walkie talkie) radio. It also comes with as many other built in gadgets as you are willing to pay for.
 

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I'm waiting for the the 6" x 9" touch screen GPS tank bag.

How long will I have to wait?
 

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I would second that the Garmin Rino handheld is a great unit. One of my riding buddies has one. I use a Garmin Zumo 550, made for motorcycling. I use it on both of my bikes but also on a daily basis in my car as it comes with a car cradle and power cord. Since the next generation 660 is now out (though not without some controversy) I was able to grab a very lightly used one on Craigslist for less than half the cost new. I use all of the features with the exception of the MP3 player.
 

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ok you want a gps that dose it all. Well sicne I have done a lot of looking let me see if I can help.

Lets assume since you are on a motorcycle fourm you want one for your bike. So at that point then it needs to be waterprof or put ina waterproof container like a aqua box. But lets go waterproof as its makes things simpler. There is some tomtom devices but hey garmin seams like the best. They have several options that can do the job.

First they have all there trail series that do mapping which can be found here
https://buy.garmin.com/shop/shop.do?cID=145

Yes big selection but let me sum it up. they are designed more with offroad hikind in mind. So generaly are good but have what I consider odd features that may not be desired. All I looked at used AAA batteries for example and have reletivaly speaking smaller screens and also limited software to some degree such as no route planning which I find very usefull. Planning a entire trip route ahead of time with specific points is nice. So for me I left these behind as a good option but not for me. Again don't get me wrong there are some great units in this area and some are very cheap for what you get but they just did not suite me.

So then there is only 3 choicess if you want new garmin (older models out there) which are the nuvi 550, zumo 550 and zuno 660. The zumo are designed for motorcycles and come with a compelate kit for even attaching to the bike, are waterproof and the zumo 550 has exterior buttons that people love. Include bluetooth and media center and these are freaking great but PRICEY. 800$ Canadian is just a bit high for these. Feature loaded, everything you want in a motorcycle specific gps but 800$ can buy me my hard bages.

So last is the nuvi 550, its been toated as a pocket knife garmin. Looks like a standaed 3.5: garmin but its waterproof, dose all the usual gps features and included routing. Its not perfect, its missing the multimedia capabiliaties, and bluetooth but hey since I added satalite radio to the bike and I am not hung up on the bluetooth this was a good buy at 300$ (another 60$ or so for the garmin kit for motorcycles, very good as it locks gps in and can be attached to battery of bike). And if you hike it can be used (need to aquire the topagraphical maps but o well it can use them), on a boat (again maps needed but it can use them) as well as the car or bike. Its the closest fit to a vstrom which is ok at everything but not perfect at any specific thing. Other gps can use the topagraphical maps but this odevice was made with those in mind, there nuvi 500 (if still avable) actulay comes with some stock.

Now will everyone say get this, nope some want the zume 550, some the 660 some the tomtom and some the older garmins are god, its personal prefernece. But this is the process I went through and as of yestorday got a zune 550 which looks grat on the bike :thumbup:
 

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I use the Nuvi 550 and am happy with it...the mount kit with wiring harness can be had from West Marine for $19.95. Unless you need an earphone jack, bluetooth or MP3 it works fine. But I just use it to get from A to B and get an accurate speed reading.

It's a fairly cheap way to get started with a GPS and it moves easily to the car and back. Mine's going to Hawaii with me to find my way around.
 

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I use the, now discontinued, Zumo 450. Very happy with it. The Zumo's are very good units although a tad pricey.

GT_Hawk: if you want bulletproof, cheap, storage -> ammo cans. I modified the ammo cans to fit the SW Motech racks so that I can always use the racks with any other storage units, that are compatible, if I so choose.
 

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Thanks for the replies. This is the kind of info I am looking for. Yeah, so I definitely looking for the GPS to be used on the bike. So, if loaded with the right software, do these GPS show Forest Service roads and everything you would find in a Delorme gazetteer?

jordan
I suggest looking at the Garmin site and comparing capabilities of various models. It seems you want to load topo maps. List all your requirements and then look at the units that meet them on their web site. Then compare prices of the ones that meet your needs and make a decision.
 

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Thanks for the replies. This is the kind of info I am looking for. Yeah, so I definitely looking for the GPS to be used on the bike. So, if loaded with the right software, do these GPS show Forest Service roads and everything you would find in a Delorme gazetteer?

jordan
I just have to interject here: take all dirt roads on a GPS with a grain of salt!

SpineGuy was up in the Rockies, just screwing around and looking for new roads. His GPS said that the road went all the way through the mountains to the other side. But the road just kept getting worse and worse. Near the ridgeline the road just ended. There was an old man fishing in a stream, just looking at him. :confused: SpineGuy asked him if the road went all the way through, the old man just stared at his Vee and finally replied no, the road ends here. :headbang:

Don't trust the thing and do your research in advance. Bring your atlas with you. And remember: even if the GPS is right, it could break down. Be prepared to do without it.
 

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I just have to interject here: take all dirt roads on a GPS with a grain of salt!

SpineGuy was up in the Rockies, just screwing around and looking for new roads. His GPS said that the road went all the way through the mountains to the other side. But the road just kept getting worse and worse. Near the ridgeline the road just ended. There was an old man fishing in a stream, just looking at him. :confused: SpineGuy asked him if the road went all the way through, the old man just stared at his Vee and finally replied no, the road ends here. :headbang:

Don't trust the thing and do your research in advance. Bring your atlas with you. And remember: even if the GPS is right, it could break down. Be prepared to do without it.
Very good points. Don't just blindly trust your GPS and have a backup handy if you are far from civilization, or even if you are not.
 

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Don't trust the thing and do your research in advance. Bring your atlas with you. And remember: even if the GPS is right, it could break down. Be prepared to do without it.
Brings me back to going across indepenence pass this year. Traveling east just across the pass, my 2008 map garmin tries to route me straight off the mountain. No road, just a 1k foot drop off straight down.

There's many more errors I've encountered, but none that extreme.
 

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High end right now is the Garmin 660, followed by the Garmin 550.

http://stromtrooper.com/forums/showthread.php?t=42861&highlight=garmin
I know what you say is true, but,
I guess I have to ask why Garmin has a $100 higher list price on the 550

https://buy.garmin.com/shop/shop.do?cID=135&ra=true

fwiw, I am disapointed with my 450, touchscreen has gone bezerk :headbang: and it seems to be a common problem over on zumo forums for both the 450 and 550

I'm considering replacing with a MIL-STD 810F spec tablet loaded with Delorme software, rather than sending the unit to Garmin for screen replacement



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There is only one option if you ask me: Garmin GPSMap 276C. I've been using it since 2004 and its indestructible. You can use it on your car, your motorcycle and your boat. Good for on-road and offroad, and since its also a marine chartplotter its good for fishing as well.

If you really want the Vstrom of GPSs, this is it.



 

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If I could justify it I would get a zumo. I've used two streetpilots on my strom, a 7200 which has an IMAX sized screen, but I'm nervous about using/losing it, it's NOT waterproof. For now I picked up a sp2610 which will use topo maps (without routing) and has 2008 street maps on it. It's waterproof and if I drop it lose it or it gets stolen, I'm only out $100.
If I had done a little more research I probably would have gone with a 2720 or 2730, because they don't use a yellow background for their maps.
 

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Tom Tom Rider 2

I purchased a Tom Tom Rider 2 for my Wee. It was easy to install and runs on batteries for portability or hard wire. To hard wire this was easy too. I have logged a few thousand miles with it so far and I like this unit.:thumbup: The ease of use is good. You can use this even with a gloved hand. Program a ride ahead of time and be ready to enjoy the ride. The other bonus is that it comes with a Bluetooth Scala headset. A $150 value! If you are looking for a great value without breaking the bank then this is for you. Enjoy!:hurray:
 

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I was overwhelmed with GPS's this time last year. I bought my first one (Nuvi 260W) and liked it for the car, but two weeks later when Costco was selling the Zumo 450's for cheap, I jumped on it. A year later I still am no expert, but I actually enjoy mapping out rides with Mapsource...kind of a hobby now. I probably use Mapsource a couple of times a week and create routes.

Yes it has failed me on a few occasions, but I am heavily reliant on them. I try and bring a paper map as well.

Also, I rarely plug in the headphone for voice commands or music. I did at first, but found I study the maps enough to sort of know when to look at the gps for instructions. It has worked this way for me so far anyway. And as much as I love listening to music, I will only do it if I am know I am say leaving a gas station and the next hour or so is sort of desolate. Otherwise I get a little distracted.

Jim
 
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