Top positive review
916 of 922 people found this helpful
on 7 January 2010
Eventually selected this Garmin after looking at a lot of other GPS units.
I've used TomTom for years, so my main decision was whether I stuck with them - or finally bit the bullet and tried out another manufacturer.
I'm used to TomTom's UI - but every extra feature seems to cost a fortune and I loathe their customer service.
Quick summary - I'm glad I changed.
The Power Lead. Power lead for the unit is a thick cable that's like having a boa sprawled over your dashboard. I've absolutely no idea why they've made it so chunky. On the bright side though, I've got no worries that it's going to snag or break, I'm quite convinced it's going to outlast me.
It's crashed a couple of times. When it does crash it restarts and you with one button push you're back on your route. Not good it crashed, but at least it's a reasonably pain-free crash.
Manuals. Useless. Traffic was flakey on my first trip and I'd no idea why. I'd used the power lead, but kept on losing signal. Only when I got home and noticed another lead in the box, I realized that there was a separate FM antenna you have to plug into the power lead.
Build Quality. It feels well made. Big sold slab of nice rubberized plastic, with a lovely bright massive screen on the front.
UI. Didn't take me long to realize I preferred it to TomTom.
Full Post-code recognition. Many units have this now, but it was lovely to get it.
Bluetooth Handsfree. Works beautifully. I turn on my GPS and it now automatically routes all calls to it - can just leave your phone in your pocket.
Traffic. Not a lot to say. It works, and it comes free with the unit (yes I'm talking to you TomTom with your overpriced optional FM aerials).
Road Names. I liked the sound of this, but definitely my favourite feature. Rather than just saying "turn left in x", it actually tells you the name of the road you need to take (and quite remarkably pronounces everything correctly). Makes a massive difference when driving in a town as you no longer have to glance at the GPS screen to check where it thinks it is, and therefore where the 2nd left actually is.
In summary, it's not perfect (so close it hurts a bit) - but I think it's the best value unit out there.
Lovely large screen, full post-code search, lane guidance, road-name speech, bundled FM traffic, nice simple, clear GUI, European Maps. As far as I'm aware, there's no other unit that will give you all this for the price.