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Old 01-28-2013, 08:18 PM   #1
avgas OP
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Dual sport gps

I'm a gps noob, so forgive my ignorance. I've been reading through the posts here, but it's only gotten me so far...

I'm looking for gps that can handle rough dual sport use. My understanding is I'll need tracks for offroad, as well as routes for directions on the road. It'll also be used occasionally for xc skiing, car trips, etc. I don't do week + road trips on the motorcycle, so running it off batteries might be ok? (if it's a unit with usb power) Screen size isn't much of an issue, I can live with slowing down to read the thing.

So far I'm leaning towards the garmin 62s or 78s. I don't see the 78s on REI's website, and I was leaning towards buying it from them because of the easy returns. Maybe the deals elsewhere are so much better that I should forget about REI though...

Anyway, would those units work well for me? Are there other ones I should consider? I don't really want to spend much more than the 62/78s, and cheaper is always better.
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Old 01-28-2013, 11:33 PM   #2
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62 will not run on 12 V.

78 from WestMarine.com $200

62/78 just ok for simple car use, cheap Nuvi is 100 times better.

The best "Does it all" would be Montana
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Old 01-29-2013, 01:13 AM   #3
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The 62 is pretty sweet. Mine was stolen and now I have an Oregon. I gotta say, I prefer the 62 for a couple reasons:
- The touch-screen on the Oregon, Montana, etc. is nearly impossible to use w/heavy gloves. Even with my burly ice climbing gloves, I could hit the buttons on the 62 with relative ease.
- The matte plastic touch screen is really tough to read when it's dimmed (much unlike the 62 series, which has a glass screen that looks great and is less affected by glare when the backlight isn't activated)

However, the bigger screen on the touch screen models is really handy sometimes - especially when mounted to handlebars or the like. They also have other cool optional features like a built-in camera, blah blah...

The 78s are cool, too. Great for marine use. They float! That's a nice feature. They are pretty huge, though.

Really, it's a matter of preference. They're all great. Play with them all in the store and see which one you like best. The 78s are cool, but come with different maps, i think...I don't know much about em.

My preference lies in the 62. I think it can't be beat.
(I use my unit for hiking, skiing, motorcycling, sailing on some little lakes, and hunting)
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Old 01-29-2013, 02:03 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by TylerJRiggs View Post
My preference lies in the 62. I think it can't be beat.
(I use my unit for hiking, skiing, motorcycling, sailing on some little lakes, and hunting)
I'd second that. I'm happy with mine.

It's all a compromise. The 62s doesn't have a dictated 12vdc power connector like the 78 does. External dc power is though a mini-usb connector (5VDC). I run mine exclusively off PowerEx batteries and a PowerEx Wizard One battery charger.

The 62 uses a quad helix antenna. The 78 is considered a marine unit. It uses a patch antenna, which has very good reception as long as the unit is held flat. The quad helix antenna improves reception and is better suited to holding the GPS in a more upright vertical position.

There's a 62/78 thread that has more information.

daryl

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Old 01-30-2013, 11:06 AM   #5
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Good morning Avgas,

You might find this information helpful.

Regarding maps, whether City Navigator or TOPO, this information should prove useful.

Good luck,

River Pilot
Cheyenne, WY. U.S.A.
Web: www.riverspilot.com
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Old 01-30-2013, 12:05 PM   #6
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Thanks everyone for the advice. I've decided to pull the trigger on the basic garmin 78 for $200 at westmarine. I would have liked the compass and barometric altitude features of the 78s, but not at that price difference. I also got the garmin 24k topos, since I'll be using it for xc skiing and hiking as well. We'll see if it has enough of the backcountry unmaintained roads.
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Old 01-30-2013, 02:55 PM   #7
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Good choice! The 78 will give you an GPS satellite generated altitude which is fair for accuracy, and compass function while moving. Not a big loss.

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Old 02-08-2013, 10:56 AM   #8
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I've had 2 GPS fail because the mini USB connector broke from the board inside. No warranty because "the unit was abused and not used for it's intended purpose."

I now have a Delorme PN40 which has a very robust connector powered by a BurnsMoto usb plug hardwired to the battery.

Great for trails but wont navigate you through town.
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Old 02-17-2013, 09:18 AM   #9
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Which GPS???

I too am severely tech challenged... The Garmin 78 doesn't look too far beyond my capabilities. Does it log altitude and travel speed?
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Old 02-17-2013, 09:02 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by jberg98n View Post
The Garmin 78 doesn't look too far beyond my capabilities. Does it log altitude and travel speed?
Those are standard data items for each track point for all Garmins that record tracks.
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Old 02-19-2013, 01:00 AM   #11
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Is the patch antenna on the 78 a problem for motorcycle mounted tracking ?
How far vertical will the 78 tolerate ?

I suppose if standing up riding lt wont be much of a problem anyway

Has anyone heard about the 62 series having a problem shutting off in the middle of tracking as mentioned on some of the gps websites ? .Multiple users post that they mysteriously lose tracking claim it is a problem with the software and not a power issue, Upgrdes not working as a fix ?
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Old 02-19-2013, 07:57 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by Dustodust View Post
Is the patch antenna on the 78 a problem for motorcycle mounted tracking ?
How far vertical will the 78 tolerate ? ?
I assume it performs like a 76x which is fantastic. Never ever lost satilite contact like old 76 did in canyons or under cover.

Both 60 & 76 had vibration problems when running on batteries which is why you need 12V power input.
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Old 02-19-2013, 08:57 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by Countdown View Post
Both 60 & 76 had vibration problems when running on batteries which is why you need 12V power input.
Never had a problem with my 76Cx using Powerex NiMH which fit just a bit snugger than disposable AAs.
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Old 02-21-2013, 02:54 PM   #14
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Never had a problem with my 76Cx using Powerex NiMH which fit just a bit snugger than disposable AAs.
1) Many people say this, but 100 people not having a problem with a consumer product has no information. Two people having the same problem has tons of information.

2) NiMH are much lighter and are what should always be used.

3) Put strips of black electrical tape under batteries and on cover until you can just get the twist lock closed to really hold batteries in place.

4) Running GPS on 12 V eliminates any battery draw and therefore arcing even if they do vibrate. The 60 have known problem with internal battery connection that gets dirty from constant arcing and finally fails.
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Old 02-21-2013, 05:41 PM   #15
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So then ,
may I presume with reasonable probability that the numerous reports I have been reading about the 62s,sc,stc series repeatedly "losing tracks" at random , with no solution found, even after being sent back to the factory several times, could be from battery shifting ?
or could it be that the 10,000 points per track was exceeded and is being misdiagnosed by the user as a hardware malfunction when in reality it is a software design deficiency ?

I prefer the configuration of the 60 / 62 over the seaworthy 76 / 78
but as 60 is phasing out and hearing about this 62 glitch I am on the fence over getting anything because IMO the price of these gadgets, (especially used ones so that is not a good option), cost barely justifies their advantage over maps and my innate sense of direction that has got me this far.

the good 'ol paper roll chart and odometer is hard to beat, GPS is cool but it is a costly PITA for what you get [/cynical rant]
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