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Thread: Gps

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    rcannon100's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Arlingtonrider View Post
    Just curious - does Garmin show recommended bike routes and where the trails are, like Google does? Does it differentiate in any way between high traffic and low traffic roads (or those that are more bike friendly)?

    (Feel free to post answer on the equipment thread - I didn't mean to sidetrack the challenge discussion.)
    My experience with Garmin (as a geocacher) is that it is JUST a GPS. It does not necessarily have a map in it. You have to buy the maps (or get them from an open source, and there are such things). If you have a map, yes it can calculate directions --- although I have never seen how to ask it for bike directions - that's a google maps thing.

    The GPS unit will measure how far you have gone, how long you have gone, your change in altitude, how long you were moving, how long you were not, your fastest speed, your average speed, your current speed..... basically it can measure tons of stuff.

    From Geocaching I ride with a Garmin Oregon. Yup, its huge on the handle bar. Consider it a Large Print gps for geezers. There is a setting where I can ask it to show me three metrics in very large print.

    Water proof.

    And once I left it on the roof of my car. It went skidding down the highway. Still works fine!!

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    Lol - maybe I just need a handlebar mount for my ipad, and a very large battery with an Ortlieb pannier battery case. Then I'd have streetview too.

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    The Edge 800 will allow you to enter an address and then it will give you turn-by-turn directions, just like a car unit. I believe it will not route you to freeways or other high speed roads, but it does NOT have a true "bike route" function, so it won't route you to MUPs and roads with bike lanes (please correct me if I'm wrong, anyone). It will also provide turn by turn prompts if you create your own TCX file through RideWithGPS or similar site, which was my motivation for buying it. I love being able to map out a route, upload it, and ride while the unit tells me when to turn (not a voice prompt, but it beeps and shows on screen) so I don't have to think about it. Also, if I'm riding in an area and I know the name of the street I need to turn on but I don't have a good grasp on where I am in relation to that street, I can look at the map and see how close I am, so it's useful for that type of way finding and can save you from having to pull out your phone.

    The Edge 200 and 500 do not have maps in any form, but they do very basic navigation by letting you map out a route online, upload it, and then the unit shows you a line to follow and tells you if you deviate from the designated path. It's actually pretty useful and is usually good enough for your typical century ride, or if you want to pre-plan a local route to explore. The main drawback is you have to keep a close eye on the screen as it won't let you know WHEN to turn, and if the route traverses the same section more than once, the lines start to get confusing and difficult to follow...but this is pretty rare in my experience.

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    Thx for the great info.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Arlingtonrider View Post
    Lol - maybe I just need a handlebar mount for my ipad, ....
    There is a reason that Garmin has DRAMATICALLY reduced the price of their units and of their maps. Buying a map use to be ~$100+. And then you would have to update the map for ~$100.

    I just bought a new car Garmin, and it now comes with lifetime map updates (and lifetime traffic) bundled. In effect, a huge drop in price.

    Any smartphone has a GPS built into it (your welcome, the FCC required this in the late 1990s I believe it was for 911 purposes).

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    That's definitely one of the biggest benefits left that a Garmin has over a smartphone. I neglected to mention that in an earlier post. Being able to load up a route file to it, whether it's one you've created or it's one for an organized ride (total 200, 50 states, etc) is very nice. It's a cue-sheet that will route you back if you've missed a turn.

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