Garmin Colorado GPS Review

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Tom from Two-Heel Drive pointed me towards this excellent review of the Garmin Colorado 400t GPS over at Calipidder.com.

The review is exceptionally well done, with lots of nice details, and an in depth look at this device, which comes with built in topographic maps of the entire United States, and a base map that covers the World. It also has a unique navigation system that uses a click wheel not unlike that of an iPod. I’ve been eyeing one of these for some time, but haven’t had the chance to play with one yet, so this review was great at telling me what the Colorado does well and what it needs some work on.

Reviewer Rebecca puts the Colorado through it’s paces on a trail run and geocaching, and after a short 24 hours of use, she’s completely sold on the new device. From her report, the maps are good, the tracking is accurate, and it had more features then you can shake a stick at. She goes on to say that she intends to use the Colorado for backcountry navigation and more geocaching, which the unit does very well, but has capabilities that extend far beyond those uses as well.

Hmm… I just got my REI dividend as well, and I received several REI giftcards for Christmas that I still haven’t used. Perhaps I should make a trip over to the store this weekend. That is, unless someone over at Garmin wants to send me one to play with! 😉

More on the Colorado 400t here.

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5 thoughts on “Garmin Colorado GPS Review”

  1. Great blog.

    I own both the Nuvi 660 and the 760, I’m writing this review for people having trouble deciding between the two as the price difference between the two products at the time of this review is about 100 dollars. I’m not going to focus on the feature differences, as that information can be easily obtained from specifications and online reviews. The 660 was a fine product back in 2005-2006, but the new 760 outdoes the 660 in practically everything, but there are some key usability fixes that make the 760 a better buy for the frequent user.

    http://tinyurl.com/gnuvi760

    1. 760 has much better fonts for street names than the 660. This may seem like a trivial update to some, but the 760’s fonts greatly improve visibility. The 660 uses all capitalized text for street names on the map, and the font is incredibly cartoonish and unaligned, something like the scribbling Comic Sans font on the PC. The 760 uses your standard Verdana-like font with street names in capitalized and lowercase letters. The fonts on the 760 are smaller, cleaner and surprisingly much easier to read while driving. The maps end up looking professional, and not some cartoony children’s video game.

    2. 760 has better rendering in 3D map mode than the 660. In the 660 when you are zoomed in under 3D map mode, the roads close to your car are displayed incredibly large, so large that they run into other roads, making the zoom function essentially kind of useless for dense roads. The 760 does not oversize your roads just because you zoomed in to view smaller roads in detail. This fix is very nice for those who drive in places with dense roadways, like New York City.

    3. No antenna on the 760 makes hooking up your Nuvi to the cradle one step easier. On the 660 you need to flip up the antenna before attaching the cradle. For people who park their cars on the street overnight, removing the GPS from the cradle for storage in the console or glove compartment is a must, and it’s a lot easier hooking up the 760 to the cradle than the 660. It’s hard to aim the 660 to its cradle in the dark as you have to align both the bottom edge and the charge port under the antenna. In the 760, the charge port is directly on the bottom of the unit; you can attach it to the cradle with one hand in the dark easily on the 760.

    4. It takes the 660 a good 45 seconds on average (sometimes longer than 2 minutes) after boot up to locate the satellite on a cold start. If you have firmware 2.6 installed on the 760, the satellite acquisition time after boot up is between 10-20 seconds. After the firmware update, my 760 also holds a stronger lock to the satellites than my 660, I can get satellite lock inside my house with the 760, whereas I can’t get a lock with my 660 (adjusting the antenna does very little).

    5. The ability to set multiple ad hoc viapoints on the 760 means it’s a lot easier creating alternate routes (very handy to avoid a specific interstate or a high traffic road). Whereas the 660 gives you just one viapoint.

    UPDATE: This GPS is currently on sale at Amazon… now is your chance to buy one, if you haven’t already. You can find the product page here:

    http://tinyurl.com/gnuvi760

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