I have a Garmin 62s and have had no problem with it since soon after they came out. However, having just had a week up in the Lakes with my Samsung Galaxy S II with the Viewranger software, I am really considering that given a bit of battery power for the smartphone, there's no camparison really.
The Viewranger is so very easy to use, the screen is just so good at rendering the maps with scrolling a breeze. GPS signal was never lost in quite horrid weather and the phone being in my pocket and rucksack.
the gps may experience a little difficulty under wet foliage. dry foliage is fine.
i think you've answered your own questions luke.
you want a mapping gps to use it to navigate with - if not why do you want a mapping gps?
what maps do you use at present? 50k or 25k? if you use 25k maps then you need a gps that can use 25k maps. getting 50k gps mapping when you use 25k paper maps may not be a very good investment. (imo completely pointless but that's me). if you use 50k paper maps then 50k gps mapping is fine - that all depends where you walk. here in the south east 50k mapping is all but useless for anything other than the major routes.
be aware that quo now quote prices EXCLUDING vat. quo is cheap for small areas of mapping. for large contiguous areas their prices are quickly eroded by the competition and then overtaken.
satmap map prices are quite good and you can get both 25k and 50k on the same card and the unit will toggle between the two scales - which makes overviews even easier to work out. the satmap online route planner sucks - unless they've revamped it and you can see a proper screenful of map. satmap are also expanding their range of overseas mapping.
Luke - I have the Lowrance loaded with my Quo maps at both scales. The only other gps I had was the non-map Geko so not a good comparison. One weakness with Quo on the Lowrance & PC is on the zoom out. At a certain point of zoom, if on the 1:25K, it switches to the1: 50K &then on the useless road atlas scale. On the PC you can force it to zoom out on the 1:25K without switching but it's memory hungry. For that reason it's not an option on the Lowrance. I don't know if this is is a similar limitation with other software.
I've no experience with the satmap but it does get the better reviews. I chose Quo/Lowrance as I was already using Quo on my PC & had a lot of maps already which I printed as required. I also didn't like the fact that the satmap PC system was online only. I've not done the price comparisons like Parky Again but find theQuo prices reasonable. I have all the national parks at 1:50K & the Lakes at 1:25K, same for most areas I visit. The rest I buy as I go - the benefit of Quo is you can buy small chunks at a time.
I might be wrong but I think the Lowrance is also more weather resistant than the satmap.
craig, my somewhat biased opinions on gps mapping. please take nothing personally as these witterings are just a bit more radomness on my part. (and that feckin' grangers ad doesn't help)
what do you want a gps for? for finding out where you are occasionally or for navigating with?
if the former then get a nice cheap unit which will do exactly what you want it to. invest the price differential in perhaps some digital mapping that you can print off to your hearts desire - 50k mapping is cheap. you can also use the cheap unit to play with and learn how to navigate and use a gps effectively - it requires learning just as compass and paper does. or just use your phone to get a fix (if so equipped)
i can't see the point of spending hundreds on a mapping gps if you aren't going to use it i.e. navigate with it. it just becomes an expensive toy. if you are lost then looking a grid reference up on your map is far easier and quicker than trying to relate to a different lower scale map and re-reference that to your different scale paper map.
if you use 25k maps why have 50k mapping on your gps? save hundreds and buy some 50k digital mapping and print maps which will be far more practical, easier and useful. - "toy" vs navigation.
if you use 25k maps then you need 25k maps on your gps i.e. your gps replaces your map and compass which then makes the hundreds spent rather a better investment i.e. it becomes navigation and your paper map becomes your backup.
back to the matter. do you aim off when navigating? why? you don't need to with a gps. do you handrail, box..why? you don't need to with a gps. do you pace? you don't need to with a gps. you don't need a mapping gps to do this but an appropriate scale map makes it easier. but then a gps has it's own foibles.
i hope that makes some sense. there's no right or wrong way just a way that works for you. the fact i can't see the point of some is well...just me. it may also save someone a lot of mney which could be used for more shiny kit.
i have used digital mapping for a number of years and own a lot of it but it's incompatble with anything else so i plumped for the satmap. as i have a large swathe of the area beneath london at 25k satmap's maps also made more sense to me as they will happily do a custom selection for you. hence my previous comments about the cost of quo's maps.
the lowrance and quo's mapping wasn't available when i bought the satmap but i suspect that if i didn't already have a lot of digital mapping i would have gone for the lowrance to avoid buying the maps twice.
Personally I also disagree with Parky Again on one point, namely:
"if you use 25k maps then you need 25k maps on your gps i.e. your gps replaces your map and compass which then makes the hundreds spent rather a better investment i.e. it becomes navigation and your paper map becomes your backup."
I have switched to the Satmap from a non-mapping gps and been using the Satmap for approx 1 year. It is my main form of navigation, map and compass now reside at the bottom of my sack and do not really see the light of day! The Satmap came with full UK 50k mapping included, well mine did anyway for a sub £300 price tag. This mapping is more then adequate in my opinion for walking in the mountains, since using it I have not thought bugger I wish I had 25k mapping like the paper maps I have bought and the ones I use on my PC.
I bought a 50k-25k SD card for Snowdon NP on the weekend as it was selling for £40 down from £105. The reason, I could not resist a bargain and I was curious if the 25k will provide any further advantage.
When I got home I put in the machine and had a play - My first thought was 25k gives you more detail as you zoom in but you suffer from reduced overall view - 50k has the right balance IMO for hand held device, i.e. detail v overall view.
I will caveat that I have not used the 25k map in Snowdon yet, this will happen in the summer and as the SD contains both 25k and 50k I should be able to quickly assess if the 25k has any advantage and change my above opinion!
To end, I do all my planning on Memory Map 25k mapping, transfer routes to the GPS and have no problems with the GPS displaying the route on the 50k scale and navigating with it.
Each to their own I suppose but the above is my 2p worth and as Parky has said there is no right or wrong but what works for the individual.
i think we actually agree dorian. you use the map that relevant for what you're doing.
50k maps up a mountain are fine as you don't have much of a choice of where to go anyway and you don't get lots of contour clutter (i haven't found that a problem due to the zooming).
plotting a route on 25k mapping and then using that on a 50k map on say snowdon (or insert your hilly bit of choice) presents no navigation problems. try that somewhere where there's lots of paths, boundaries and choices and you'll soon find the 50k inadequate.
i assume people use 25k maps because (the OP didn't say neither did craig)
a) they like them
or, possibly more likely
b) need to use them
c) bought one by mistake / to see what they're like
LEKI are pole specialists - making poles is what they do
No matter your idea of fun, the new CNX footwear range is made for play
Become a fan of OutdoorsMagic
Follow us on twitter
Sign up to our free newsletter
Meet partners in our forum
Other Immediate Media Sites
Our eCommerce Platform
© Immediate Media Company Ltd 2012. This website is owned and published by Immediate Media Company Limited. www.immediatemedia.co.uk