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17 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars No problems, great map
I've been using the TOPO Great Britain on my Legend CX for over a year now, and am still absolutely delighted with it. Unlike the other reviewers, I don't recall having any difficulty in installing and unlocking the map; perhaps I was just lucky.
Published on 10 Dec 2007 by D. S. Sivia

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165 of 165 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Poor - but the only game in town
First off, I don't want discount the pain that others have obviously experienced but I run an unexceptional Vista system and TOPO loaded and unlocked without problems. Admittedly I've been there before with City Select and predecessors but I had not a single glitch. Of course it would have been different if the Garmin servers had been down but this was one of the...
Published on 31 July 2008 by D. Lawrence


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165 of 165 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Poor - but the only game in town, 31 July 2008
By 
D. Lawrence (London, UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Garmin TOPO Great Britain DVD Maps (Accessory)
First off, I don't want discount the pain that others have obviously experienced but I run an unexceptional Vista system and TOPO loaded and unlocked without problems. Admittedly I've been there before with City Select and predecessors but I had not a single glitch. Of course it would have been different if the Garmin servers had been down but this was one of the smoothest Garmin installations ever.

The only increase in heartrate came, as always, when I couldn't find the coupon code. Garmin love to hide it - and yes I know it says where it's hidden in the bottom corner of the front of the packaging but hey, how about big red letters `THE COUPON CODE IS HIDDEN INSIDE THE PACKAGING, DUMMY'. I sympathise with the previous reviewer who ended up scrabbling about in the dustbin to find the packaging.

The maps are a disappointment, but then Garmin maps always are. The limitation on the display of TOPO maps in Mapsource to a little sub-window in the centre of the main map window (and no printing) is little short of scandalous. I can buy the whole of the UK in 1:50,000 for around 100 from Quo, see it at any scale, full-screen, and print out screens. From Garmin I can get a lame cut-down version for 130.

The only justification for buying TOPO is that it makes your hand-held a little more useful. You are never going to want plan routes with this, there simply isn't the detail. Its sole merit is that you get a bit of information in areas where other Garmin maps are simply blank.

Contours seem to be there in pretty full detail. It seems to be a bit better on river courses, where woods are shown they are better but they aren't all shown by any means. But if you're expecting something that feels like an OS map a little simplified, forget it. You're not going to know about most landscape features, though if there's an Indian restaurant in the middle of the moors (or was a couple of years ago) then that will be shown.

Paths are simply rubbish, at least in the geographical area I'm interested in. There's a garbled explanation on the Garmin website about limitations of data from the Ordnance Survey (OS), which apparently doesn't distinguish between different types of track. In the form in which the explanation is given it doesn't explain why only around a half of the paths are shown and why the map is littered with bits of path that begin and end in random places and connect with nothing. Comparing with an OS map it appears that when a path runs along a track it is not shown - it simply disappears. Frankly, you'd be better of without them since they do nothing but add meaningless clutter. Again, I've only looked at one area - others may be better.

The best you can really say is that TOPO is better than nothing and that there's nothing else you can buy that does the same job. It's astonishing that a company which makes such excellent hardware - I've loved every Garmin I've ever owned - shows such complete incompetence and complacency when it comes to mapping products - though judging by some of the comments on the Colorado, not even the hardware can be guaranteed any more.

Roll on the day when Galileo is up to speed and maybe some more manufacturers come in and there is some real competition. Until that happens, Garmin will continue to make us jump through hoops on installation, pay full (rather than upgrade) price when you want to modernise your maps alongside your new (and expensive) Garmin unit, make do with crippled software etc - because they can.
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63 of 63 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Missed opportunity from Garmin, 30 Mar 2008
By 
D. Tomey - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Garmin TOPO Great Britain DVD Maps (Accessory)
I also wasted much time trying to install this software onto a Vista operating system before ending up on the Garmin website and going through unlock process number two. Believing I could then start to use the pacakage, I quickly needed to resort to using the "Help" functionality - to receive an error message stating that the "Help" functionality was not actually compatible with Vista and not available; no help then!
I had planned to use TOPO on the new Garmin 705 for mountain bike riding. The lack of detail in the mapping, such as rights of way, I believe makes it virtually impossible to pre-program a route to follow on the trail - especially important when one is looking to avoid trespass issues.
I returned both the 705 and the TOPO software to the retailer for a refund.
The 705 looked like a useful piece of kit. It's a shame I never got a chance to use it on the trail. The 705 would be useless "off road" without additional mapping, unfortunately TOPO just doesn't delivery.
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49 of 49 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars installation nightmare and not that great for off road, 29 Mar 2008
By 
Russell Baker "Russell" (Berkshire, UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Garmin TOPO Great Britain DVD Maps (Accessory)
Like other reviewers I had a terrible time installing this product. There are major incompatibility problems with windows Vista which although fixed with a patch from the Garmin web site mean that you have to go through the tortuous website registration process rather then use the installation wizard.

Once installed it's quite good. However, it's not like having a OS map available, really you need to have both when entering routes. It's very good in urban areas, showing even small roads but once you get out into the countryside it's not great. Contours are accurate and there is an attempt to show the kind of landscape (woods, marsh etc)which works quite well. Some paths are shown well, Cumbria seems particularly well represented but Berkshire is not. It's also hard to see the size of some things and exactly where the path goes (try following the towpath along the Kennet and Avon Canal for instance).

Would I recommend this? Well if you have a mapping GPS such as the GPSMAP60 then yes, it's a useful addition to the mapping that comes with it. But before you make the final decision, have a look at the Garmin website. There is a fully functional demo of the map. The real thing is very similar. If it shows what you want to see then go for it.

Personally I do use it quite a lot but I still use Oziexplorer just as much too.
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29 of 29 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Disapointing, 1 Aug 2008
By 
M Cochran (Inbred, Suffolk, UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Garmin TOPO Great Britain DVD Maps (Accessory)
The OS tie in was what helped sell me on the idea of this product. Afterall OS maps are the definitive maps for the uk, so good, even the army works to OS maps.

These maps are to go in a handheld garmin thats used by the likes of walkers, geocachers and other outdoorsy types. So you should be expecting nicely detailed maps that cover the huge networks of public footpaths across the UK? NO!

You get the contour lines, and most roads, but footpaths not a chance. Which is why my title sums up my feelings about this product in one word. If the networks of footpaths were in there, then this would be a bargain for the money. But software to go in an outdoor activity GPSr, that misses out the footpaths is just a wasted opertunity, and far too expensive for what info you do get.

Next time, try harder Garmin!
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25 of 25 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars How to register!!!, 16 Aug 2008
By 
Fraser Gentles (Glasgow, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Garmin TOPO Great Britain DVD Maps (Accessory)
As with most other people I too experienced the same problems when trying to register the software using a pc with windows Vista. What you need to do is this: 1) Go to garmin.com and register your gps. 2) Install the software (give the registration wizard a go, but it most likley will; not work!) 3) Go to garmin and then go through the following menus: Support - Updates and Downloads - Mapping Programs. 4) Download and install the most recent update for Mapsource (it is about 48Mb) 5) once this is done, lauch mapsource and go to Utilities and manage map products 6) Highlight topo great britain and click register online 7) the next stage is to go through the steps on the screen. N.B. if your GPS is not found look at the right hand top corner of the web page and you will see that you need to download a communication plug in. Do this and then go back to step 6. 7) Once you have been successful, your 25 digit code shoudl be displayed on the web page. If it is not, log into garmin (using the details used to register your gps) go to manage my maps and you should find it in there. 8) Armed with this code, and ensuring that the software is closed, go to start - programs - garmin and run the unlock wizard. Select the option - something like "I have a 25 digit code" follow the steps and it should work. Good luck!!! As far as the software goes, not sure yet as I have only just managed to get the thing to register!!!
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20 of 20 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Get a grip, Garmin!, 31 May 2008
By 
paul may (Beccles, Suffolk United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Garmin TOPO Great Britain DVD Maps (Accessory)
This may or may not be good software. I'm hoping to find out one day, but it won't be this weekend because Garmin customer support don't work at weekends (ie when their customers have returned from the shops only to find they can't unlock the maps!) It's all true what you read in the other reviews. You go through various hoops, enter your code, and then it tells you it can't connect to the internet. And you can't use the website to unlock UK maps as suggested by US users with the same problem.

It serves me right as I read these reviews before buying - I just thought I'd be one of the lucky ones.... I'll think twice next time I ignore Amazon reviews.
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17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Unusable, 13 May 2008
This review is from: Garmin TOPO Great Britain DVD Maps (Accessory)
The maps are protected by Gramin's infamous unlock system. Unfortunately having bought my maps a week ago, garmins registration servers have been offline the entire time, so the maps and the GPS I bought to use with them are currently useless. Garmin has an online unlock facility through a website - but it doesn't allow you to unlock non-us maps.
Their customer support website is offline -throwing no less that 22 javascript errors at you, so you can't even contact them to show tell them you have a problem. Bad show Garmin, Very bad show. This map of the UK dvd by itself costs more than some satnav systems, so you would expect quality. I clearly made a mistake here buying Garmin.
Avoid.
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Good - and not good, 18 July 2008
By 
Dean Forester (Forest of Dean, U.K.) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Garmin TOPO Great Britain DVD Maps (Accessory)
I have been using this product for about 6 months now. If you want to be able to see contour lines as you walk it's great. It's also good for woods, towns villages etc. However, footpaths (at least as depicted here in the Forest of Dean) are not shown at all well. Many, many footpaths are not shown. The ones that are shown are often not complete. For walkers, as well as the commercial so-called ('Points of Interest') why not add something useful like stiles, rights of way, public toilets, drinking water, areas prone to mud etc.
On the PC you do not get the detail that you see on an O.S. Map and the interface is crippled - no printing allowed, a small 'viewport' that shows detail and you can barely make out roads.
I have 'Garmin TOPO Great Britain V2' (Mapsource Version 6.11.6) and after several attempts at installation eventually got it to run on Windows Vista - but I had to make the 'shortcut' to start it myself and it will only work if you select 'Run as Administrator'
In summary - contour lines are very good - other areas are sadly lacking
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Error 12038 - Unable to unlock product...., 1 July 2008
By 
Richard Youell (Cambridge, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Garmin TOPO Great Britain DVD Maps (Accessory)
I stupidly ignored others feedback....... This product is locked and cannot be unlocked without spending lots of time waiting for e-mail replies from Garmin or listening to lots of hold music on their support lines. I find it difficult to believe that a company like Garmin have such poor regard for their customers. I will not be purchasing any Garmin products again.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars TOPO Great Britain V2, 4 Sep 2008
This review is from: Garmin TOPO Great Britain DVD Maps (Accessory)
I must express my dissappointment with the Garmin Topo Great Britain V2 maps. Not only with a tiny Reduced Map Window For Detail when viewing and planning routes on computer but also the map content; contour lines blurr and smear at certain zoom levels, pathways start and stop in the middle of nowhere, bridges, paths, rivers and roads missing, or incorrectly shown. The worst part though, Garmin offer no other mapping software for the UK, therefore making its excellent mapping GPS units ineffective.

I also experienced installation problems, having to contact Garmin several times to unlock the license.

To be used allong with OS paper maps, not as I hoped, to replace them.
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