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Old 03-05-2007, 02:01 PM
 
Location: NJ/SC
4,321 posts, read 13,875,584 times
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I'm looking into purchasing a GPS, can someone recommend which one to buy and a reasonably price place to buy it? I need something that's easy to use, update and maybe under $400? Thank you.
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Old 03-05-2007, 02:22 PM
 
Location: Happy wherever I am - Florida now
3,360 posts, read 11,373,470 times
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What will your use of it be? Are you using it in a car, a boat, for hiking, or attached to a laptop as in a GPS antenna? Do you want a permanent installation or a handheld?
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Old 03-05-2007, 02:31 PM
 
Location: Hopewell New Jersey
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I assume you are speaking in terms of a unit that you travel with in your car (as opposed to handheld,marine use etc).
You have two distinct choices you have to make self contained or laptop based.

In the self contained type you have a unit that plugs into a 12 VDC assc. jacket an is attached to the inside of the winsheild (usually). You have Sony,Tomtom or Garmon as the big three players.

Not as well know but IMHO a much better choice is the laptop based approach.

There are GPS units,active anntenna if you will, which are about 2 1/2 inch in dia x 1/2 thick with a cord that plugs into a laptop USB port. The laptop approach has a number of advantages.
1: Lots of memory and hard drive space.....you can load the entire country into the laptop and drive everywhere without any "location modules" etc to load as you go along.
2: Big screen. No little screen which the driver has to squint at. A real keybrd and mouse or "finger pad" instead of virtual on screen buttons. Having "real" keys also elininates having to go though a bunch of nested submenus because the screen is only large enough to handle say 6 action keys at a time.
3: All the software, and updates come on a std. data CD. no special cables/protocols etc.
4: If you're really doing a road trip you likely have your laptop with you anyway for doing email etc. If you've got a co-pilot on your trip they can also be checking on places to eat,things to do/see while you're paying attention to driving.
5: You can also concurrently run Google Earth and track you progress against a sat. image as well as the road map system.
6: The system to do all this is available almost everywhere for $105 to $115.
Lot cheaper than a stand a lone because you not rebuying hardware that in a laptop you've already got !!

Do a search on Garmon GPS-18. I have a number of them (I've used them in my line of work also). Very rugged little module. Comes in 3 flavors. Get the USB interface model for your purposes.

I have recommended this approach to a number of folks in the past who have come back and thanked me for not letting them buy a redundent standalone unit with less features.
re
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Old 03-05-2007, 02:54 PM
 
Location: Happy wherever I am - Florida now
3,360 posts, read 11,373,470 times
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JBrown,

DeLorme also has a laptop antenna based one called the Earthmate GPS LT-20. What do you think of that one?
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Old 03-05-2007, 03:52 PM
 
Location: NJ/SC
4,321 posts, read 13,875,584 times
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Thanks for all the info.

I'm looking for something I can use driving and for finding addresses for selling real estate. I'm not sure using a laptop would work because I'm going to have a client in the seat and I'm not sure how asking them to hold it would work.
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Old 03-05-2007, 06:08 PM
 
Location: NOVA - retiring to OKlahoma
569 posts, read 1,162,890 times
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Thumbs up Garmin Quest2

I have a Garmin Quest2. I love it because I can use it on my Harley or in my truck.

When I bought mine it was about $700 on Garmin's website. I found it online, new in the box, for about $500 on another electronics website. You can order it preloaded with the map(s) you want. Updates are available from Garmin as they are released.

Here's a link to CNet's comparison page. There's also reviews of the device on it. I bought mine from BuyDig dot com.

http://shopper.cnet.com/Garmin_Quest...-31468208.html
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Old 03-05-2007, 09:06 PM
 
Location: Hopewell New Jersey
1,393 posts, read 7,296,185 times
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Rapture...for your intended application I agree..you might want something smaller than a laptop. Garmin is the major player and offers solid reliable products with a good customer online support section.
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Old 03-06-2007, 10:02 AM
 
Location: NJ/SC
4,321 posts, read 13,875,584 times
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Thanks again. I'll probably buy something this week and be back with more questions. Everyone has been extremely helpful.
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