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Hi,
I have been considering buying a GPS unit for my bike in anticipation of summer actually coming to the Toronto area sometime within our lifetimes. Garmin & TomTom have motorcycle specific units which seem to have a lot of valuable features, but an exceptionally high price tag e.g. between 700 & 900 dollars. That is a lot of cash for a farkle, albeit a useful one.

Is there any particular reason for their expense? I know they have some cool functionality, but they don't seem to be THAT much more feature-rich than some of the hand-helds or some of the automobile models.

Would the vibrations destroy a regular unit?


Any thoughts/suggestions either explaining the costs, or offering alternatives will be greatly appreciated.
Regards,
Frank
 

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Is there any particular reason for their expense? I know they have some cool functionality, but they don't seem to be THAT much more feature-rich than some of the hand-helds or some of the automobile models.
They are waterproof so they can be used in the rain. They are ruggedised to withstand the vibration of a motorcycle and they have screens with icons designed to be used whilst wearing gloves and that are able to be seen in direct sunlight. Oh and they come with motorcycle specific mounting hardware.
 

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I use a Garmin 60Cx. I think it's a great general purpose GPS. Tough, waterproof, versatile. Negatives are small screen, and you have to add the software so by the time you are down it isn't all that much cheaper than a Zumo.

However, if I had to replace it I would get a Zumo.
If you want a larger screen and want to keep cost down there are a lot of user that use some of the older Garmin units. I don't know the model numbers but I beleive they are 27xx where xx is some other numbers. There is a uhuge thread on ADVrider in the equipment section that is bound to have some useful information (although I think it is over 100 pages by now.)

..Tom
 

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Gps

Apparently a new Garmin Zumo is coming out so check with http://www.gpscentral.ca/ for old Zumo 550 stock or get a refurbished unit with a warranty. I'm pleased with GPS Central and my 550. Consider getting a Boosteroo splitter and amplifier and enjoy your favourite tunes; a Zumo will hold hundreds of mp3 with a 4 GB Sd card.

It's not a farkle. It's the best battery powered toy ever invented and it makes riding safer because all the navigation thinking is done for you. Just ride.
 

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//
Would the vibrations destroy a regular unit?
//
No. But motorcycle-specific units have a motorcycle mount, motorcycle wiring, generally support custom routes and routes with multiple waypoints, are designed to be operated with gloves, and are waterproof.

You can now buy mounts and waterproof housings for most models of Garmin Nuvi, and some of those are available for less than $150. You can also put an overlay on the touch screen so you don't scratch it.

I also have a Garmin Nuvi 500, which comes standard with topo maps. The Zumo is better in many ways.
 

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Apparently a new Garmin Zumo is coming out so check with http://www.gpscentral.ca/ for old Zumo 550 stock or get a refurbished unit with a warranty. I'm pleased with GPS Central and my 550./
I just checked their Zumos and they are very "proud" of them....$$$$$$:bom_thumbsdown:
Amazon has new 550s for $649.98 which is cheaper than the other guy's re-furbed units and free-shipping.

I'm not trying to start a price war and I'm sure that there are stores cheaper than Amazon, but bucks is bucks.......
 

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Gps

I have a Garmin Nuvi 750 and am quite happy with it. Paid about $290 Canadian. It also has a SD card that I have a couple hundred music MP3's on. It is not water proof so I have found a water proof case that appears i might be able to mount on the bike. Haven't tried it yet . But all in it will be about half price of a Zumo. Check it out.

www.ram-mount.com/aqua_box_mount/aquabox_mediumwide_mount.htm

Good luck
 

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Garmin 478 here (after a few years with a 276c). Great screens and fast processors. They're from the line of Marine units, so water and shock resistance are top notch.
 

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Zummo 660

I have been looking at getting a Zumo. I believe you get a better price on the Zumo 660 at GPS City than GPS Central. A friend bought his Zumo 550 there and was happy with the service. Here is the link:

http://www.gpscity.ca/item-garmin-zumo-660/zumo660.htm

It is supposed to be out on April 9th. It is expensive, but note that it does have a lot of features if you want them including MP3 player, stereo Blue Tooth......

It also comes with a car kit, and as a Canadian there are months of the year that it will only be used there.

My friend with the Zumo 550 loves his and I bet the price on them drops when the 660 hits the market.
 

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Love my Zumo. Don't forget that with the Zumo you get both the car and bike mounts and all software.

The unit is ready out of the box to use on the bike and in the car with nothing extra to buy.
 

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A few months back I purchased a Nuvi 260W for $200 and a Zumo 450 for $350. The extra $150 was well worth it. I have no complaints with the 450. The 260W was nice, but after buying an aqua-box, they were almost the same price and the 260W lacked what I wanted for the bike. And yes there is the software, hardwire kit and mount you get with the Zumo.

I will say I liked the fact the Nuvi 750 has an audio jack and does routing (I think 10 routes). If I went with a Nuvi, it would be the 750. I do like the Nuvi wide screen over the Zumo screen.

...too many choices...
 

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I'm happy w my 2720. It cost 113 + @ 50 for the mc kit. This gives me mapsource' and hardwire for the bike and it came w a car mount so its easy to switch. No internal battery, so not for hiking if that's an issue. It's waterproof and bike friendly though.
 

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I agree on the Garmin 2720. It is the predecessor to the motorcycle specific Zumo line. I just picked one up, refurbished, from TigerGPS.com for $109 plus $39 for the motorcycle mounting kit. The only catch was that shipping to Canada was going to be close to $100. So, I had it sent to my hotel while down in Florida last week.

After looking at all sorts of other solutions (and I did use my bargain priced Garmin i5 on my bike with a couple of zip-ties last year - it made it through Hurricane Ike just fine) inlcuding spending big dollars on a Zumo 550 or getting the new 660, I think this 2720 is the best deal around at the moment.

It is heavier and bulkier than the newer models, has no internal battery, no bluetooth, and can't play MP3s, but is incredibly simple to use as a GPS, and I am very impressed with the search speeds and the way it tracks the roads.
 

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My Garmin Quest 2 has now been discontinued. It was marketed as a motorcycle GPS, I think mainly due to it's water-resistent design. I purhcased a refurbished unit last year from Ebay for less than $200 U.S. delivered. The same seller had Quest 1's for $119. I believe that, generally speaking, most factory "refurbished" items have never actually been used. Mine carried a factory warranty.

I don't use all of the features mine has, so I doubt I would miss features of the more expensive models. The main thing is to know that you are getting detailed maps as part of the purchase and won't have to buy them separately.

I use mine every time I ride. I made a magnetic base and it sticks to my Pat Walsh radar detector shelf. I power it through the standard cigarette lighter plug to a socket that I added to my dash area. When I walk into a store, I just pluck it off the shelf and drop it into my luggage, mount and all.

The Quest 2's screen is not the smallest, but it's fairly small. It's not an issue. The display is very clear. As I approach a waypoint, it zooms in to show me the upcoming turn. It does this for a few seconds at 1/2 mile, then zooms and stays zoomed once I'm within a few hundred feet.

My brother uses a non-waterproof automotive (Nuvi?) on his Harley. He just puts it away if it rains. I mention this because though I rode my Wee roughly 14,000 miles last year, I only put my rain gear on 3 or 4 times. That's not very often, considering. If I had to do without my GPS only that many times in a year, it would be a fair trade-off to paying for an expensive water-tight unit. I still carry an atlas when I travel.
 
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