Best portable GPS for Cali. (or anywhere)

California

I just put the cali thing in the title so it wont get booted.. ;)

 

So I am looking for a GPS that I can use on the dirtbike so I can explore deeper and still find my way back in a loop format, I would mostly use this in Havasu as there is LOTS to explore there.

 

So I havent looked for a while, but when I was looking I was thinking about the old CS series, but now there are so many options!!!!

 

Any experience with them, I would also like a larger screen and obviously it would need to be good at tracking my off the beaten path Indiana Jones type rides..

 

So many options its sensory overload...any recommendations on a particular one.  It doesnt need to be a Garmin, they just seem to be the most popular

 

I tried to post a pic of the new lineup but the site said too many pictures...

I just put the cali thing in the title so it wont get booted.. ;)

 

So I am looking for a GPS that I can use on the dirtbike so I can explore deeper and still find my way back in a loop format, I would mostly use this in Havasu as there is LOTS to explore there.

 

So I havent looked for a while, but when I was looking I was thinking about the old CS series, but now there are so many options!!!!

 

Any experience with them, I would also like a larger screen and obviously it would need to be good at tracking my off the beaten path Indiana Jones type rides..

 

So many options its sensory overload...any recommendations on a particular one.  It doesnt need to be a Garmin, they just seem to be the most popular

 

I tried to post a pic of the new lineup but the site said too many pictures...

You have a preference over touch screen or not?  What bike are you putting it on mainly to see if you want it to have the caoability of being hardwired or not?

You have a preference over touch screen or not?  What bike are you putting it on mainly to see if you want it to have the caoability of being hardwired or not?

 

I dunno, buttons are nice with gloves, but touchscreen has a lot more options and more user friendly, so I would say touch screen, I actually tear a hole in the index finger of my riding gloves so I can work my touchscreen Ipod..so yeah touchy is nice.

 

Will put it on whatever I am riding at the time, and will be swapped from bike to bike and into the Jeep, My CRFs both have lighting coils, the YZ, not yet, but working on it, so I should have a power source, but I am sure they will work on Battery too right?

come on out to our next ride , between us we probably have 4 different garmins, from the old V, 60cs and the old trusty 276/376!!! oh yea plus the Montana!

 

the Montana is pretty cool, touch screen, yada yada yada!

I recently went through this decision process and decided on the Garmin Montana. Great reception, preloaded with topo maps, 4" touchscreen. The touchscreen works with gloves on just as well as bare fingers. Full color - no problem reading the screen in direct sunlight.

 

If you use the Garmin Rugged mount you can power the unit while remaining waterproof (using the usb input does not allow this).

I wired it directly to the battery so that the unit remains powered on until I remove it from the cradle after I am finished for the day. The rugged mount mates with Ram hardware perfectly.

 

When you are done riding you can put the Montana in your truck in automotive mode and the GPS acts like a normal Garmin automotive GPS with turn by turn directions and all that.

 

 

I used a Garmin 60csx for years (driving, hiking, flying, motorcycles, etc) and loved it. The Montana blows it away...

I am sure they will work on Battery too right?

 

The only catch about using the GPS battery is that it can shut itself down when going over rough terrain. This can be mitigated by adding some kind of padding to the inside of the battery compartment but it will likely still turn off on occasion. This seems to be true for almost all brands of GPS. The best solution is to hard wire it to the bike's power source.

Buttons best bet is Garmin 78 or 78S

Touch screen = Montana

 

The above all have a good hardwire power option, stay away from units that don't (miniUSB like the Oregon and 62) unless battery only.

Also keep in mind, to hard wire requires 11-15 volts DC, AC will not work nor will poorly regulated DC.

 

The Montana is more flexible then the 78 but costly. Factor in the price of Maps either preloaded or user installed.

The touch vs buttons is not as black & white an issue as on an Ipod or phone given the environment.

 

Bruce

Edited by BDM
The touch vs buttons is not as black & white an issue as on an Ipod or phone given the environment.

 

 

Just want to also mention that the Montana is a different type of touchscreen. There are two layered screens and the unit determines your finger position by noting when/where the two screens come in contact. All it requires is slight pressure. It isn't your usual phone/ipod/whatever touchscreen. It was made for gloves.

I recently went through this decision process and decided on the Garmin Montana. Great reception, preloaded with topo maps, 4" touchscreen. The touchscreen works with gloves on just as well as bare fingers. Full color - no problem reading the screen in direct sunlight.

 

If you use the Garmin Rugged mount you can power the unit while remaining waterproof (using the usb input does not allow this).

I wired it directly to the battery so that the unit remains powered on until I remove it from the cradle after I am finished for the day. The rugged mount mates with Ram hardware perfectly.

 

When you are done riding you can put the Montana in your truck in automotive mode and the GPS acts like a normal Garmin automotive GPS with turn by turn directions and all that.

 

 

I used a Garmin 60csx for years (driving, hiking, flying, motorcycles, etc) and loved it. The Montana blows it away...

Cool.  I have been thinking about a replacement for my 60csx.  It has served me well for the 5 years I have owned it.  The screen is pretty scratched up so it is time for a new one.  Definately wanted a bigger screen.  Was hesitant about a touch screen but have been reading good things about them. :thumbsup:

Just want to also mention that the Montana is a different type of touchscreen. There are two layered screens and the unit determines your finger position by noting when/where the two screens come in contact. All it requires is slight pressure. It isn't your usual phone/ipod/whatever touchscreen. It was made for gloves.

 

Agree, however there is more to it then just how readable, sensitive and durable.

 

I own both and about 10-20% of the time I get an unintended result with the touchscreen for example;

I wish to zoom in or out and miss slightly and the unit enters the pan mode.

or

I wish to enter the pan mode and instead drop a waypoint by mistake.

 

On my button unit I get what I want 95% of the time.

The touch screen has the benefit of being reconfigurable but I prefer panning via the rocker pad over the touch screen.

Cost also enters into it as WestMarine often has the 78 for $200, add $150 for maps & mount and you are at $350, the Montana + Maps over $500. With sub $100 Nuvis car units sticker shock becomes an issue.

 

Bruce

Agree, however there is more to it then just how readable, sensitive and durable.

 

I own both and about 10-20% of the time I get an unintended result with the touchscreen for example;

I wish to zoom in or out and miss slightly and the unit enters the pan mode.

or

I wish to enter the pan mode and instead drop a waypoint by mistake.

 

On my button unit I get what I want 95% of the time.

The touch screen has the benefit of being reconfigurable but I prefer panning via the rocker pad over the touch screen.

Cost also enters into it as WestMarine often has the 78 for $200, add $150 for maps & mount and you are at $350, the Montana + Maps over $500. With sub $100 Nuvis car units sticker shock becomes an issue.

 

Bruce

What would be the advantage of the 78 over a 60csx that I currently have?

The big thing is the tracks, the 60/76 is limited to holding 20 saved tracks of 500 points each where the 78 hold something like 200 saved tracks of 10,000 points each.

Also 200 vs 50 routes, and 2000 vs 1000 waypoints. Pass on the new 62 as miniUSB hardwire only.

 

Your 60CSx has a 2 axis E compass while the 78S has a 3 axis E compass, in other words it still works @ 40 and 90 deg from flat not just flat.

 

You have a great unit the 78 is only a slight step up, the Montana a big step up but at a cost. I to have a 60CSx and will likely wait for blowout pricing on the 78 once discontinued and/or see how the forthcoming Garmin Monterra (a Montana chassis w android OS) shapes up.

 

Bruce

Edited by BDM

Agree, however there is more to it then just how readable, sensitive and durable.

 

I own both and about 10-20% of the time I get an unintended result with the touchscreen for example;

I wish to zoom in or out and miss slightly and the unit enters the pan mode.

or

I wish to enter the pan mode and instead drop a waypoint by mistake.

 

On my button unit I get what I want 95% of the time.

The touch screen has the benefit of being reconfigurable but I prefer panning via the rocker pad over the touch screen.

Cost also enters into it as WestMarine often has the 78 for $200, add $150 for maps & mount and you are at $350, the Montana + Maps over $500. With sub $100 Nuvis car units sticker shock becomes an issue.

 

Bruce

 

 

I agree that unintended touchscreen results do happen more often then with a buttoned unit.

 

I prefer to pan on the screen rather then the rocker pad. With the pad you can only pan in 4 directions but the screen lets you pan in any direction. Also I notice the screen refresh after pan is much quicker on the Montana rather then my 60. It is possible the 78 may be faster then the 60 so you don't notice.

 

 

I doubt you will see the 78 as a great improvement over your 60csx.

 

Screen size

60: 1.5x2.2

78: 1.6x2.2

600: 2x3.5 (65% larger screen)

 

Resolution

60 and 78: 160x240

600: 272x480

 

Body

60: 2.4x6.1x1.3

78: 2.6x6.0x1.2

600: 2.9x5.7x1.4

You have a great unit the 78 is only a slight step up, the Montana a big step up but at a cost.

 

That is dead on. If you want to upgrade there isn't really anywhere to go but to the Montana. The cost to do so is fairly high.

Great thread!

I've been going through all this too and never pulled the trigger. There are a few threads on the Montana and the mods some did to make it mo' betta.

I was leaning towards the MT because of the screen size. But what worries me is its a brick to use hiking, which is a bummer. From what I read you're better off getting the lower end color model because you're just paying for preloaded maps, supposedly GPsdepot or some site like that has ones you can download.

I have the 78 and pretty happy with it. It's the learning curve that has been a nightmare. Rode with a guy that had the Montana and it seemed to be a little more user friendly. I got mine mainly to save really cool trails I explore and download tracks at the dual sport events. I think if you go with any Garmin you can't go wrong. Basecamp is fun to play with. You can plan a route right from home and download it on the device

 

Some guys just love the GPS and rely on it for everything. I like dead reckoning, maps, roll charts, landmarks, and compass just as well.

i've been running the Garmin Zumo 450... buttons AND touchscreen... music and photos too...

 

i think maybe the montana is the replacement?

 

Zumo was waterproof and fuel resistant, which is main difference from nuvi???

 

worked well for a while, but damaged a portion of touchscreen... luckily i still have buttons!

come on out to our next ride , between us we probably have 4 different garmins, from the old V, 60cs and the old trusty 276/376!!! oh yea plus the Montana!

 

the Montana is pretty cool, touch screen, yada yada yada!

 

 

Nice, good to see them up close. 

I recently went through this decision process and decided on the Garmin Montana. Great reception, preloaded with topo maps, 4" touchscreen. The touchscreen works with gloves on just as well as bare fingers. Full color - no problem reading the screen in direct sunlight.

 

If you use the Garmin Rugged mount you can power the unit while remaining waterproof (using the usb input does not allow this).

I wired it directly to the battery so that the unit remains powered on until I remove it from the cradle after I am finished for the day. The rugged mount mates with Ram hardware perfectly.

 

When you are done riding you can put the Montana in your truck in automotive mode and the GPS acts like a normal Garmin automotive GPS with turn by turn directions and all that.

 

 

I used a Garmin 60csx for years (driving, hiking, flying, motorcycles, etc) and loved it. The Montana blows it away...

 

 

Seems the OVERWHELMING choice would be the Montana by a landslide...gonna be looking into them, maybe Amazon has the best prices?

 

Thanks for all your input guys, been a lot of help!

The big thing is the tracks, the 60/76 is limited to holding 20 saved tracks of 500 points each where the 78 hold something like 200 saved tracks of 10,000 points each.

Also 200 vs 50 routes, and 2000 vs 1000 waypoints. Pass on the new 62 as miniUSB hardwire only.

 

Your 60CSx has a 2 axis E compass while the 78S has a 3 axis E compass, in other words it still works @ 40 and 90 deg from flat not just flat.

 

You have a great unit the 78 is only a slight step up, the Montana a big step up but at a cost. I to have a 60CSx and will likely wait for blowout pricing on the 78 once discontinued and/or see how the forthcoming Garmin Monterra (a Montana chassis w android OS) shapes up.

 

Bruce

Well I think the 60 holds the tracks at 10,000 but when you try and load them back into the GPS it limits them to 500.  Kinda weird.  The thing with my compass and the 2 axis is I think I always have to be moving for it to be working.  Once I stop it doesn't continue to point in the way I want to go if I am trying to go to a "waypoint".  I think the 3 axis does or at least that is what I though it did from what I read.  That is why I was asking because if that is the only real step up I can't see making the jump.  I am still on the fence with the touch screen. 

 

Good question there Speedy :thumbsup:

Nice, good to see them up close. 

 

 

Seems the OVERWHELMING choice would be the Montana by a landslide...gonna be looking into them, maybe Amazon has the best prices?

 

Thanks for all your input guys, been a lot of help!

 

 

Amazon is great to buy from.  Safe transactions.  Good prices.  But when I do serious shopping I can usually find a better price elsewhere.

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