GPS REVIEW UPDATE: Garmin eTrex Legend C and Vista C
Update and Tips:
After using the eTrex Vista C handheld GPS Receiver for some time, we are still very happy with it here at the lodge. Along the way we ran into a roadblock that the manual didn't detail, but we've got a solution for you here....
We typically our GPS receivers around here for bicycling. We lay out a route with waypoints, upload to the GPS, and then follow the route, turn by turn. Because we bike on many back roads, there tend to be lots of turns on rarely used roads. My hunch is that this as not what they had in mind when they formulated the navigation programs for these things.
Issue: When you drop a route onto the eTrex Vista C , it can only handle 50 waypoints or less whn navigating by road. even if you don't have more than 50 waypoints, it will navigate you according to what it thinks is the best route - not the exact route you planned out.
Solution: Navigate "Off-Road", which allows the GPS to navigate point to point, and can handle in excess of 50 waypoints. It also allows the GPS to forget about trying to navigate you on the "Shortest" or "Quickest" roads, which is exactly what I don't want when I am biking; please I want to AVOID the interstate thanks. to do this, go to the Main Menu Screen, then to Set-up, and Routing. Under the Guidance method, pick either Prompted or Off Road. If you pick prompted, you will be able to choose each time you navigate a route if you want "Off road" or "Follow Road".
The Vista C is a time saver too. The boot up process is very fast, and takes less than 10 seconds to start aquiring satellites, compared to about 30 for the Vista monochrome. The Vista C is also much faster in aquiring your location. Translation is that you are off and navigating a lot faster, which is pretty convenient.
At first I was unsure that the size was right on the Vista C, but it has grown on me and overall, I like it. The picture here shows the New Vista C along side of the Vista monochrome.
The Vista C is a bit wider, and a bit shorter, but overall the impression in handling it is that it's more compact. It seems to fit more places, etc. The shorter, wider screen doesn't kill you either, although I find myself keeping the data fields to just 2 (instead of 3 or 4) because they take up valuable space if you opt to have more than that on display.
One of the features we love here at the Lodge is that the sequence of the screens can be customized. No more scrolling thorugh all the screens just to get back to the one you were just at. I find it easy to customize, and a great time saver.
See our original review of the Garmin eTrex Vista C and Legend C here.
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Posted by Scott Martin at July 2, 2005 9:11 PM