October 30, 2008

Garmin Nuvi 775T Review

The Garmin Nuvi 775T is one of the newer widescreen GPS units (Announced in August) in the Nuvi line at this writing and offers several key upgrades over the Nuvi 770 offering that I think are useful and worth consideration when shopping for a GPS. I firmly believe that text to speech and widescreen GPS units are worth paying the additional money for, and being at the high end of the Garmin line, the Nuvi 775T has both. That's not all though, as Garmin has seen their way to adding in a few other goodies to keep people interested and enticed enough to put the Nuvi 775T high on their list. The reason to spend a little more on teh Nuvi 775T is to get both North American AND European maps pre-loaded on the device. If you are heading to Europe and want a GPS, this is a great high end choice.

Let's take a look at the features of the Garmin Nuvi 775T to see what it has to offer....

The key features that the Garmin Nuvi 765T has that are above and beyond the Nuvi 760 are:

Free Lifetime Traffic - The "T" designator gets you lifetime traffic on the units. A strategic change for Garmin who has had a subscription model on their units until now. The Nuvi 775T has TMC Traffic. The Free traffic is supported by ads that appear on your GPS. Now before you say "I don't want any ads on my new GPS!" you should understand that they are pretty unobtrusive and only show up if you are sitting still for more than 10 seconds.

Lane Assist - "Know the Lane Before it's Too Late" - Garmin brings Lane Assist to its line, which I think is great. It helps you decide which ramp to take when you hit complicated highway situations. I like this a lot and I think that on any intersection that is slightly more complicated than a standard exit ramp, the image that reflects reality makes a big difference when you are navigating in unfamiliar territory.

3-D Buildings - Garmin is now bringing 3-D buildings to the Nuvi 7X5T line with semi-transparent representations of the actual buildings that are there. Cool stuff; a fun new development that will continue to make the GPS view look like the view out your windshield.

Faster Route Calculations - Garmin has changed how and when it calculates routes for the Nuvi 775T and others in this release. The routes are calculated sooner - like when you select a Point of Interest, and so when you hit "Go" it is probably mostly done with the calculation. It makes for a much better experience; a LOT less time tapping your fingers at the end of the driveway for longer routes.

HotFix - This is Garmin's terminology for a technology that speeds satellite acquisition times. This technology has the unit remembering where the satellites will be several days into the future so that when you turn it on, the time to satellite lock is a LOT faster.

Other Great Features:

Text to Speech - of course this higher end unit has text to speech, and it offers a good set of voices that you can use with different accents, etc.

North American AND European Maps - The Nuvi 775T comes with Maps of the US and Canada as well as Puerto Rico then adds maps of Europe. Western Europe has detailed coverage down to the small roads, while Eastern Europe is covered with increasing detail, but sometimes covers urban areas with connecting roads. By the time you get to the Ukraine coverage is for major roads only. Check out Garmin's website for up to date news on emerging coverage.

Bluetooth HandsFree - This allows you to use the Garmin as a handsfree unit for your Bluetooth enabled phone. This capability is added to the Nuvi 765T, and stays for the Nuvi 775T. I have used Bluetooth handsfree capabilities on numerous Garmin units with my iPhone Blackberry and various Moto phones with great success. You can check phone compatibility at the Garmin Website. Unlike some GPS units, the protocols that Garmin uses allows you to import your phonebook off the phone as well as "recent" phone calls making the Garmin a nice hub of calling capability. The pairing of the GPS and the phone is easy and can be done by most people without the use of any manual.

Optimized Routes - The Nuvi 700 series offers a nice feature that allows you to enter in several stops along a route, and get the Nuvi to optimize the route for fastest travel. This can be very helpful when doing a lot of work or shopping or house hunting in an unknown area.

Garmin Garage; Download fun car icons - Garmin has opened up the Garmin Garage where you can easily download new "car" icons to your computer and load them into your Nuvi 775T. The process is easy and they offer everything from a kid on a tricycle, a flying slice of pizza to space ships.... oh yea, and a whole bunch of cars too.

I recently took the sister unit of the Nuvi 775T, the 755T, out for a 2 week hand on review period, and put together a full review on its capabilities. Check out the Full Review of the Nuvi 755T for more details. The only difference between the Nuvi 755T and the Nuvi 775T is the Bluetooth handsfree feature and the addition of the European Maps.

Garmin will add Garmin HotFix technology to the line which lets the GPS units predict where satellites will be and grab a signal faster when you turn it on.

The Garmin Nuvi 7X5T series is available at Amazon:

  • Garmin Nuvi 755T - features above, including North American Maps, but not Bluetooth Handsfree.
  • Garmin Nuvi 765T - Adds Bluetooth Handsfree capabilities.
  • Garmin Nuvi 775T - Includes Bluetooth and Maps of both N. America and Europe
  • Garmin Nuvi 785T - Includes North American Maps and MSN Direct Capabilities (Traffic, Movies, Gas Prices, and more).


There are several resources available for the Garmin Nuvi 765T including:

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Posted by Scott Martin at October 30, 2008 9:26 AM

Recent Comments

I am returning my second Nuvi 775T. The first one was a previously returned unit that was sold to me by Future Shop (i didn't know it was a returned unit until I registered it). There were three problems with it: 1. It froze on route calculation. I had to do a total reset (erase all user data) to fix this. 2. After I hung up using the blue tooth feature, there were no sound. Didn't happen every time, but if it did, I had to turn it off and on to get my sound back. 3. Touch screen could not be calibrated. It sometimes were way off, making it a frustrating effort to type an address or telephone number in.
When I returned the first one, I thought I'll give it a second chance and bought another one. Unfortunately it has the same problems #2 and 3 above. So, it's going back and my reasearch will start over. Pity - this thing has all the features I want and like.

Posted by: Rudolf Steyn at February 21, 2010 3:42 PM
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