GPS for cars - looking for opinions from owners

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Ops_was_a_truck, Nov 17, 2006.

  1. Ops_was_a_truck

    Ops_was_a_truck JOOOLIE ANDREWWWWWS!!!!!!

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    My fiance and I are looking to get one of those GPS "get directions from anywhere to anywhere" devices for her father's van. We've been doing some looking - both online and at stores - and have seen a variety of price ranges.

    Her dad is pretty low tech and doesn't need a ton of extras on the GPS system. We're trying to find a relatively cut-and-dry one that'll show him how to get from point A to point B.

    Now, I'm really not starting this thread with the hopes that folks will start googling stuff for me. I'm just looking for opinions on GPS systems if you already own one.

    Any help?
     
  2. llamatron

    llamatron Shut up, Nigel. TFW2005 Supporter

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    A cheap alternative can be to find a second hand laptop and get a USB GPS and the appropriate software and just mount that in your car. This has the added advantage of allowing you to essentially have a media system etc as well in the car, incase you get sick of looking at the road.
     
  3. Ops_was_a_truck

    Ops_was_a_truck JOOOLIE ANDREWWWWWS!!!!!!

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    I appreciate the idea in theory, but I'm not kidding when I say he's not a big fan of technology. I think a laptop with a GPS attached would confuse him, to say the least.
     
  4. alphie

    alphie Veteran

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    Garmin. My bro-in-law works there, actually I think he's a programmer for some of the systems, but I think he now does consultant work. There are a lot of different units out there and we borrow one any time we vacation. They range from rather simple to highly advanced. Check them out, they also have the voice to let you know where to turn and such.
     
  5. My03Tundra

    My03Tundra LOVES TO EDIT POSTS!!

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    Either Garmin (who I LOVE), or Magellan. Both are AWESOME companies with great products.

    My recommendation is to get a unit that has as many POIs (Points of Interest) as possible. Most portable units have six to seven million, while in dash systems can have up to twice of that because of their larger storage capacities. I have maps of most of the SW, W, NW and Central US on my portable (inter-vehicle) GPS system.
     
  6. rattrap007

    rattrap007 Insert witty comment here TFW2005 Supporter

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    I drive my dad's old 96 lexus es300 (the sedan)(He's a doctor and mine has 150,000+ miles on it so it isn't anything new or what ever..) anyhoo I can't say anything about the add on ones like Tomtom or Garmin or anything.

    I did get a loaner car while mine was in for a check up once and it had built in GPS.. Not very good software. I asked it for directions to the West Side Wal-Mart.. a place I've been to many many times. Well it had moved about a year or two before. I took me to the old location. Plus the voice recognition kinda sucked. I asked for "food" It would show me things like libraries or some thing. It would give me hotels. I even shouted "FOOD!!" it gave me the wrong thing again.. I just laughed.

    Tomtoms are supposedly pretty good. Just don't get one that relies on an outdated CD Rom like a one that is built into the car. I'm fairly technical and it caused me some headaches and I only used it for about a day or two.
     
  7. DevilzFan

    DevilzFan CobraIsland.com Veteran

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    The two I've had have been Garmin. Excellent systems.
     
  8. Optimus Scourge

    Optimus Scourge Arcee's boy toy Veteran

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    I think that's the one we are getting, the portable one...(or A portable one)

    I don't own one yet but I am shopping for one also. My fiance is possibly getting a promotion that will include company travel. We shopped for a GPS system last week, so we'd know what to get when/if it all happens.

    You may know the one. All I remember is that is was the most expensive at $500, but it's ease of use and no need for a PC would seem to be your interest here.

    anyway, it does not require uploading maps from a PC. It is fully self contained and portable, and can download your current maps via satellite. All the others (which YES are cheaper) required a PC . and also if you travel outside the programmed area, you need to go online and download maps, plug in your GPS via USB and so on.

    About said portable system:
    It talks to you as a lot of them do, with turn, by turn directions. Also, if you miss a turn, it will automatically tell you, and re-route you. Also has a "find another route" feature, which seems helpfull.
    If you decide to go far away, (example another state) it will know that you need new maps! it will automatically download via sattelite if you are near a new area whose maps are not loaded.
    it also stores all your destinations and starts. (up to a certain number), i forget exactly, but it's sufficient for sure. emample: if my fiance gets her promotion she will be a traveling trainer for her company. she can store all her stores' locations (and of course add new ones) and go point-to-point from any two locations with ease. and you can save your past locations (I think it auto-saves, not sure...)


    I'm no expert, but I hope that helps, man.
    to us it's worth the extra $ plus you can take it car to car with you. so if we take my car, we can still use it. :) 

    I'll post the name and model of the one I'm speaking of tomorrow.

    good luck!
     
  9. Ops_was_a_truck

    Ops_was_a_truck JOOOLIE ANDREWWWWWS!!!!!!

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    Hey all, thanks for the suggestions thus far. OpScourge, those requirements sound almost exactly what the lady and I are trying to find. I know her dad would just get pissed if he was trying to go cross-country and had to download a bunch of maps.

    I'm eager to hear the make and model on this puppy, please keep me updated.
     
  10. Optimus Scourge

    Optimus Scourge Arcee's boy toy Veteran

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    yeah, at first I was like the cheaper the better, but after I spent some considerable time getting info explained to me on the avalible choices, the portable GPS seemed the natural choice. And being portable, if your car is ever being repaired or something, you can take this one in your rental or loaner, etc. hell, if you go to the city and are on foot you can carry it, which we may do for Botcon next year. Would have been nice to have that when we were in NYC for Cybercon '05.

    And it's got some other features, too. IIRC it can even store MP3's. (which may be overkill here, but cool nonetheless) I don't know the details of capacity or memory, but I'll find out.

    I'll call the stereo shop today and get you that info, Ops. I'll be home later on tonight to post it.
     
  11. Optimus Scourge

    Optimus Scourge Arcee's boy toy Veteran

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    The model we chose is called the ALPINE BLACKBIRD

    I'm sure there ore other similar systems, but this is the only portable my local shop carries
     
  12. Ops_was_a_truck

    Ops_was_a_truck JOOOLIE ANDREWWWWWS!!!!!!

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    Cool, thanks dude.

    For some strange reason, he keeps repeating that we should check out the Garmin 330 (?) series. I think it's just because that's what he heard someone in the family recommend, so he's probably stuck on that name alone. However, the Blackbird - from what you described - sounds more like what he's been asking for, so I'll check that out in more detail.
     
  13. GetterDragun

    GetterDragun Well-Known Member

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    My friend owns a Stero shop and he recommends the TomTom for a non-in-dash one.

    I have a Pioneer AVIC-Z1 and it is incredible.
     
  14. Kickback

    Kickback Proud father Administrator Super Mod News Staff

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    Garmin 550.

    $499.95 from my store.

    If you seriously want it, I'll send you a 30% off coupon you can use. That makes it, what, $350?
     

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