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Ralph Hood
Top Gun


Reged: 05/06/04
Posts: 4257
Loc: Erwin, TN
Handheld GPS
      #300041 - 10/02/10 07:34 PM

All: Is there such a thing as a good, cheap, handheld GPS for driving?

Thanks for your help,

Ralph Hood

--------------------
Ralph Hood
www.ralphhood.com


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Russell Holton
AVSIG Member


Reged: 07/07/05
Posts: 14136
Re: Handheld GPS [Re: Ralph Hood]
      #300042 - 10/02/10 08:17 PM

Quote:

handheld GPS for driving




Why handheld?


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Russell Holton
AVSIG Member


Reged: 07/07/05
Posts: 14136
Re: Handheld GPS [Re: Russell Holton]
      #300055 - 10/02/10 10:43 PM

The reason I ask, to me "handheld" is something designed to go along with you as you hike the great outdoors and tends to be a bit ruggedized to handle things like a bit of rain.

Or are you talking about a "portable" automotive GPS such as the type you see in the store ads?


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Jerry Kurata [KLVK]
Top Gun


Reged: 05/02/04
Posts: 6395
Loc: Northern California
Re: Handheld GPS [Re: Ralph Hood]
      #300074 - 10/03/10 09:23 AM

If you get an Android smartphone it will likely have one built in. iPhone gps apps are $50 or so.

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sreyoB yrraL
AVSIG Member


Reged: 05/16/04
Posts: 9442
Re: Handheld GPS [Re: Jerry Kurata [KLVK]]
      #300086 - 10/03/10 12:25 PM

Definitely. The included navigation and map apps on my Android phone completely eliminate the need for a separate GPS. All I needed to add was a $10 car power cord so I could use it for longer trips without draining my battery.

Somehow, I don't think Ralph wants a smart-phone, though.

I also really like my wife's Garmin. It does a fantastic job.


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Mase Taylor
Top Gun


Reged: 04/29/04
Posts: 9446
Loc: SOCAL
Re: Handheld GPS [Re: Ralph Hood]
      #300091 - 10/03/10 01:27 PM

I've been very happy with my Garmin nuvi.

--------------------
Fly The Airplane As Far Into The Crash As Possible. - Bob Hoover 1922-2016 R.I.P.


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Anne Umphrey (KBED)
Top Gun


Reged: 04/28/04
Posts: 12756
Loc: KBED
Re: Handheld GPS [Re: sreyoB yrraL]
      #300092 - 10/03/10 01:27 PM

I have the Garmin Aera with both aviation and streets on it. Great for my photographers who can't find a specific street or property. Not much battery power so no good for hiking around.

I did have one photographer, new to me and new to aerial work who brought along his iPhone or whatever and found what he was looking for on it.

Anne

--------------------
You haven't seen a tree until you've seen its shadow from the sky.
- Amelia Earhart, 1897 - 1937


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Ralph Hood
Top Gun


Reged: 05/06/04
Posts: 4257
Loc: Erwin, TN
Re: Handheld GPS [Re: Russell Holton]
      #300115 - 10/03/10 05:48 PM

<<Why handheld?>>

Russell--So I can take it with me for usage in rental cars on trips. I shoulda mentioned that...

Ralph H

--------------------
Ralph Hood
www.ralphhood.com


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Russell Holton
AVSIG Member


Reged: 07/07/05
Posts: 14136
Re: Handheld GPS [Re: Ralph Hood]
      #300119 - 10/03/10 06:42 PM

Quote:

Russell--So I can take it with me for usage in rental cars on trips. I shoulda mentioned that...




OK, so we're talking about a standard non-built-in automotive GPS.

I think Garmin is good. I'm always leery about the cheap no-name brands. I always wonder just how good they are at small but important details. (Finding an address, having an accurate data map, etc.)

So I'd suggest Garmin. Just get to know the features so you don't spend too much to get more then what you want.

Since I bought my Motorola Droid, I have no need for a automotive GPS. I just got a car adapter and a generic GPS mount and I'm in business. I did that for a vacation in CA and it worked great. The only downside is you do need the data connection, so if your really in the boonies and need to "recalculate" you could be in trouble.


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Robert Mann [HPN-NY]
AVSIG Member


Reged: 05/15/04
Posts: 11777
Loc: NY
Re: Handheld GPS [Re: Ralph Hood]
      #300133 - 10/03/10 09:34 PM

Ralph,

I very recently bought a Garmin nuvi 1490T. Review here from CNET.

Used it a few times on long trips. It's superb. Big easy to read 5" screen, live traffic info and re-routes for traffic, lane assist, handheld mode if you're walking, and many other great features. It goes for around $250.

The 265WT is also very good, smaller screen, and about $100 less.


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Terry Carraway
Top Gun


Reged: 06/02/04
Posts: 7098
Loc: Maryland
Re: Handheld GPS [Re: Ralph Hood]
      #300143 - 10/04/10 07:28 AM

Garmin Nuvi

I have had 4 generations of Garmin GPSs. And have used every one of them when traveling in rental cars.

The Nuvis are small,light, flat and the power cord/mount is also small and easy to carry.

And I really like that with Garmin, you can buy a lifetime subscription to maps/POI updates.

The Nuvis have internal batteries so you could carry them and use them as a handheld when walking around

--------------------
Terry
Mostly 0W3


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John O'Shaughnessy [FCM]
Top Gun


Reged: 09/13/01
Posts: 5059
Loc: Minnesota
Re: Handheld GPS [Re: Ralph Hood]
      #300155 - 10/04/10 12:41 PM

I also like the Garmin Nuvi units. A little bigger than a pack of cigarettes. I purchased mine specifically to use in rental cars when traveling. I sometimes use it locally, but more as a curiosity.

John


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Jerry Kurata [KLVK]
Top Gun


Reged: 05/02/04
Posts: 6395
Loc: Northern California
Re: Handheld GPS [Re: sreyoB yrraL]
      #300176 - 10/04/10 06:15 PM

Larry,

Which phone are you using?

We are looking at moving to Sprint and went yesterday to see the Samsung Epic g4 and HTC Evo. Very nice and so fast on the 4G network.

I want to dump my iPhone so bad!!

Edited by Jerry Kurata [KLVK] (10/04/10 06:15 PM)


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sreyoB yrraL
AVSIG Member


Reged: 05/16/04
Posts: 9442
Re: Handheld GPS [Re: Jerry Kurata [KLVK]]
      #300182 - 10/04/10 07:56 PM

I'm on Verizon with the HTC Incredible. Very nice phone. The EVO is very similar though except for the larger display and overall size.

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Coyle Schwab - DPA
AVSIG Member


Reged: 04/29/04
Posts: 697
Loc: St Charles, IL
Re: Handheld GPS [Re: Robert Mann [HPN-NY]]
      #300197 - 10/04/10 10:54 PM

I'm a Garmin fan, but I've had poor luck with the 1490T. I bought a refurbished one from Tiger Direct. Failed on the way home. Seller replaced it with another refurb. It seemed to work ok ... until I took a couple of long trips where it decided to power itself down from time to time.

Consulted with Garmin, updated firmware, etc. No improvment. Garmin replaced my GPS with yet another refurb 1490T (it was shipped with out of date operating firmware, BTW). Guess what? Same problem.

I've emailed Garmin to see what their next step is. I think I'd like the unit aside from this nagging issue.


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Terry Carraway
Top Gun


Reged: 06/02/04
Posts: 7098
Loc: Maryland
Re: Handheld GPS [Re: Coyle Schwab - DPA]
      #300209 - 10/05/10 03:14 AM

Hmm, power problem with the cigarette lighter outlet in the vehicle? :)

--------------------
Terry
Mostly 0W3


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Coyle Schwab - DPA
AVSIG Member


Reged: 04/29/04
Posts: 697
Loc: St Charles, IL
Re: Handheld GPS [Re: Terry Carraway]
      #300222 - 10/05/10 07:11 AM

>>Hmm, power problem with the cigarette lighter outlet in the vehicle? :) <<

Don't think so, Terry.

When the cig lighter's power is interrupted, the GPS beeps and informs you, then gives an option to continue on the internal battery. In this case the device just goes dead, then powers itself up again (usually) with full power-up diagnostics. Almost every time the GPS remembers the route it was on but, of course, reinitiates navigation from the current location.

Most of the time it's simply a nuisance. A couple of events have been at a really inconvenient time - very frustrating.

One of Garmin's tech svcs folks seemed to know about the problem and indicated a software bug that caused a reset if the unit momentarily lost satellite reception. An upgrade was supposedly the fix. Did that and still had the issue.

Sent Garmin an email last evening; we'll see what develops. For now, however, I cannot recommend the Nuvi 1490T. Or apparently the Nuvi 1300, given my friend's similar issue with hers.


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Jerry Kurata [KLVK]
Top Gun


Reged: 05/02/04
Posts: 6395
Loc: Northern California
Re: Handheld GPS [Re: Coyle Schwab - DPA]
      #300336 - 10/06/10 09:00 PM

Coyle,

There was just a big recall of Garmin Nuvi units for battery issues. You might check and see if your unit is on the recall list.

Jerry


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John O'Shaughnessy [FCM]
Top Gun


Reged: 09/13/01
Posts: 5059
Loc: Minnesota
Re: Handheld GPS [Re: Jerry Kurata [KLVK]]
      #300405 - 10/07/10 06:09 PM

Quote:



We are looking at moving to Sprint and went yesterday to see the Samsung Epic g4 and HTC Evo. Very nice and so fast on the 4G network.





Three of my Sprint-using friends have and like the HTC Evo. Main issue is shorter battery life than an iPhone 3GS.


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sreyoB yrraL
AVSIG Member


Reged: 05/16/04
Posts: 9442
Re: Handheld GPS [Re: John O'Shaughnessy [FCM]]
      #300418 - 10/07/10 07:47 PM

I just picked up a larger-capacity (1750mAh vs 1350) battery for my HTC Incredible. On the first charge now but the difference is quite noticeable. This one was the same size as the original but there are even larger ones available that are thicker and include a replacement back cover to accommodate the increased size. Looks like there's a 3500mAh option available for the Evo which is more than double the original capacity. It's also easy to swap out so, unlike the iPhone, you can carry extra charged batteries with you.

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Sean Franklin
Top Gun


Reged: 08/15/04
Posts: 2566
Loc: Eureka Springs, Arkansas
Re: Handheld GPS [Re: John O'Shaughnessy [FCM]]
      #300437 - 10/08/10 10:50 AM Attachment (162 downloads)

Quote:

Three of my Sprint-using friends have and like the HTC Evo. Main issue is shorter battery life than an iPhone 3GS.



MAIN issue is the small footprint of the Sprint network... ;-)



--------------------
Eureka Springs, Arkansas


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Joe Budge (W29)
Top Gun


Reged: 04/30/04
Posts: 7423
Re: Handheld GPS [Re: Sean Franklin]
      #300443 - 10/08/10 11:15 AM

Quote:

MAIN issue is the small footprint of the Sprint network... ;-)




+1. I used to have Sprint. I noticed that whenever I "went places" it would end up roaming - and it was always roaming on Verizon. Guess who my phone is with now? <g>

Regards,
Joe


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Jerry Kurata [KLVK]
Top Gun


Reged: 05/02/04
Posts: 6395
Loc: Northern California
Re: Handheld GPS [Re: Sean Franklin]
      #300453 - 10/08/10 12:50 PM

Roaming on the Verizon network is free provided you don't do it more than x (which I think is 25%) of the the time. Since I don't travel a lot that means for me the coverage map is the union of Sprint and Verizon.

More importantly for me is that Sprint is one of the few carriers that still supports unlimited data and has phones that can be easily (and for free) tether to run your laptop, iPad, and other device.

Edited by Jerry Kurata [KLVK] (10/08/10 12:53 PM)


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Jerry Kurata [KLVK]
Top Gun


Reged: 05/02/04
Posts: 6395
Loc: Northern California
Re: Handheld GPS [Re: John O'Shaughnessy [FCM]]
      #300456 - 10/08/10 12:56 PM

Quote:


Three of my Sprint-using friends have and like the HTC Evo. Main issue is shorter battery life than an iPhone 3GS.




Do you know how what sort of battery life they are seeing?

I imagine running that big display and 4G data has to use a lot of power.


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Sean Franklin
Top Gun


Reged: 08/15/04
Posts: 2566
Loc: Eureka Springs, Arkansas
Re: Handheld GPS [Re: Jerry Kurata [KLVK]]
      #300461 - 10/08/10 01:07 PM

Quote:

Roaming on the Verizon network is free provided you don't do it more than x (which I think is 25%) of the the time. Since I don't travel a lot that means for me the coverage map is the union of Sprint and Verizon.



If you don't travel Sprint could be OK but make sure you know what they are promising (and what they're not):

Off-network Roaming: ... Sprint reserves the right, without notice, to deny, terminate, modify, disconnect or suspend service if off-network usage in a month exceeds: (1) voice: 800 min. or a majority of minutes; or (2) data: 300 megabytes or a majority of kilobytes...

...Music store, Location Based Services (GPS), Ready Link, and Data Link [note: e.g. tethering] may not be available in roaming areas...

--------------------
Eureka Springs, Arkansas


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Terry Carraway
Top Gun


Reged: 06/02/04
Posts: 7098
Loc: Maryland
Re: Handheld GPS [Re: Coyle Schwab - DPA]
      #300465 - 10/08/10 01:12 PM

OK, I use my StreetPilot more than my Nuvi. I forget that the Nuvi has an internal battery.

Strange.

--------------------
Terry
Mostly 0W3


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Gil Buettner [KAUW]
Top Gun


Reged: 05/16/04
Posts: 2847
Loc: Gateway to the Northwoods
Re: Handheld GPS [Re: Jerry Kurata [KLVK]]
      #300562 - 10/09/10 04:04 PM

Jerry, I have the EVO and love it. I noticed the short battery life when it was new and I was exploring the features a lot. Now it easily makes it through the day with normal use. I have a car charger to give it some juice if I am driving, but I do use it at work constantly, including internet and various applications such as taking notes and looking up tail numbers to record the owner's name for service at the FBO. No problems.

That said, I don't get 4G service where I live, only when I travel to a larger city.

No complaints about roaming or lack of service anywhere.

--------------------
-Gil


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sreyoB yrraL
AVSIG Member


Reged: 05/16/04
Posts: 9442
Re: Handheld GPS [Re: Gil Buettner [KAUW]]
      #300567 - 10/09/10 04:40 PM

I've been running my new (1750mAh vs 1350mAh) battery for a few days now and the battery life is significantly improved.

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John O'Shaughnessy [FCM]
Top Gun


Reged: 09/13/01
Posts: 5059
Loc: Minnesota
Re: Handheld GPS [Re: Sean Franklin]
      #300578 - 10/09/10 06:16 PM

I waited two years longer than I should have to move from Verizon to Sprint, worried about the coverage.

Like Jerry, I realized (at least as of 2007 or so) roaming was free on Verizon, with the restrictions you noted. None of those were issues for me, and comment about services available, or not available were really the same as if you were in a weak Verizon coverage area -- ie, standing next to someone getting EVDO coverage on a Verizon phone, I got EVDO coverage on my Sprint device.

I found that I rarely roamed to Verizon, given how little I traveled, but it was a nice safety net to have, and, for me, Sprint was less than half of what I was paying Verizon at the time. Now the deals are not so hot, but I would still see savings over Verizon for my type of usage.


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John O'Shaughnessy [FCM]
Top Gun


Reged: 09/13/01
Posts: 5059
Loc: Minnesota
Re: Handheld GPS [Re: Sean Franklin]
      #300579 - 10/09/10 06:18 PM

Also - the coverage map linked below seems to cover more territory.

http://coverage.sprintpcs.com/IMPACT.jsp?INTNAV=ATG:HE:Cov


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