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3.8 out of 5 stars
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3.8 out of 5 stars
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TOP 1000 REVIEWERon 4 January 2016
Please note when reading this review I am a hobbyist / light user.

As a family we have recently got into Geocaching and have previously been using the app on my smart phone to find and locate them however the GPS receiver on my phone (and many others I believe) is not that strong as you have a lot of gadgetry to pack into a small device so we found that often we would lose satellites and end up trying to find a miniscule Geocache in a 15 metre radius which is quite tricky! We also found that having the phones GPS on all the time while looking at the screen drained the battery quite quickly which is no good on a five hour trek through the moors.

So I was very pleased to get this as a Christmas present and I have been able to test it out on a geocaching field trip with the kids, overall I think it’s an excellent unit and I’ve broken it down into pros and cons below;

Pros

- Size: compact little unit which fits snuggly into a pocket
- Robust: Rubberised construction makes it tough and water resistant
- Very accurate: Massive improvement on using a mobile phone, it’s taken us to within a metre of our target geocaches every time
- Not touch screen: I know this might sound like a con but it really isn’t, I don’t need to take my gloves off to use it and the little joystick controller is simple and quick to use, reasonably intuitive (see cons below) and you don’t have to cover the screen when using it.
- Geocache support: Good but not great, you can download the data from the Geocache website (bit clunky, see cons below) as a GPX file and it contains all the data such as descriptions, hint etc… so don’t have to rely on a data connection in the middle of nowhere anymore! Also the Geocache ‘dashboard’ is really good and I tend to just load one up and hand it to one of the kids to follow. Great fun.
- Battery life: I put a set of Duracells in on Christmas day and I’ve probably used it for about 8 hours Geocaching and left it on by accident for at least there days, so far the battery indicator has remained full.
- Chrome OS recognised: Well sort of, I plugged it in to my Chromebook and it picked it up as an external drive easily enough so I was able to copy GPX files only it. There are no fancy software interfaces though.
- Not just for geocaching: We’ve used it when setting off for a walk at a holiday home where we didn’t know the area very well, just set a waypoint and a track going and you can find your way back dead easy if you get a bit lost – that’s the point of these things after all!

Cons

- Instructions: You get a quick start guide and nothing more. I was able to get the hang of the basic functions easily enough within about 10 minutes but I have used GPS devices below and I am quite tech savvy. The interface itself is reminiscent of devices before touch screens which I used quite a lot however bear this in mind if you’re used to using Androids or iPhones – it’s not that slick but it is functional. There are also features that I have yet to work out what they do but I’m sure I will get there.
- Maps: You can’t easily download maps to the eTrex10, not a major concern for me but if you really want this feature you need to go for a more advanced model. Technically it's possible but it would be a real faff to do it.
- Garmin software: I downloaded the Garmin software to run on a Windows 10 laptop (previously tried on a Vista 64bit PC – don’t bother if you have this set up) and it looks far more complicated than I need it to be or have time to understand.
- Geocaching website interface: The Geocache website has a handy feature to allow you to send a geocache’s details straight to the GPS device from the webpage itself as long as you have the Garmin software interface installed – I could not get this to work for the eTrex10. It recognised the device but when clicking on the link it just did nothing. From visiting several forums this turned out to be a common fault that seems to have been introduced after an update to the Garmin PC software. I was able to get around this but simply downloading the GPX files instead and copying them into the right folder on the eTrex itself, not quite as simple but ok.

Sounds like a lot of cons, but it isn’t really, I’m just trying to be thorough and bear in mind this is an entry level device that’s possibly showing its age on the interface a little but is accurate and works great for us. I would recommend for people with similar needs top us – might not be the thing for trekking in the Himalayas or navigating the med though. Five stars because it does exactly what we need it to do and it does it very well.
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on 23 March 2017
Basic and functional. Gives a clear line to follow out and about in the hills. Download Basecamp from Garmin, use any of the free websites to download your gpx way point files to your laptop and drag them into the folder in basecamp. It's that easy to put your routes into the Etrex. Buy a screen protector, I scratched mine first trip out :(
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on 24 February 2017
First handheld GPS ever owned and quite pleased with it. Very easy to set up after watching a few youtube tutorials. Have purchased for the use of a wildlife photo project on a large nature reserve. Have set up waypoints by using google earth and GPS visualizer which made it all so easy. might upgrade to the 30 come Christmas.
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on 7 December 2016
bought this as birthday present for my Son, he does mountaineering and uses it as a back up to confirm his location when viz is bad or there are no features around that he can relate to the map, puts your mind at rest! I used one for same purpose when in Para's.
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on 27 May 2017
Great machine, easy to use. Haven't figured out how to download to it from my computer yet, but easy enough to put co-ords in by hand.
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on 3 March 2017
does what it says on the tin!!
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on 19 June 2015
Sturdy and Rugged. But not easy to use. Everything seems legacy. Battery can go for one full day.
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on 23 March 2017
Robust. Easy to use. Fantastic. Battery life good.
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on 5 June 2015
Now I've got used to it, I love it and won't go for a long walk in a strange location without it.

I bought after trying to follow a conventional map. It was getting dark and I didn't know where I was. I'd expected to come across a dammed lake which just wasn't where I was expecting it to be. It was a bit of a relief to be told later that it wasn't my map reading skills but the dam had burst and flooded the lower valley and just wasn't there any more. Now I don't leave home without this little devise.

I don't know if I'm being a bit stupid but I had trouble learning how to use it. The maps are not maps as we know them but diagrams of routes taken. The instructions that come with this devise are not very clear (at least I didn't find them so). There's a lot on geo-caching on Youtube but I'm no geocacher. I want to use it to go from A to B. There are, however, some excellent YouTube videos. They just take a little finding. Look out for the ones by Trail Magazine. These are the clearest and easiest to understand.

Before going on a long hike, I'll download to this device a route using the Ordnance Survey website. Another excellent tool! It's possible to mark on the Ordnance Survey website "way points" and then download this route. Alternatively, if I know I have to get back to a particular point (say back to my car) then it's possible to record this "way point" and then to track back it need be. The other thing that has to be noted is that the compass isn't a compass but more of a pointer to the next "way point". After getting over the learning curve, it's worth having this tool.

My only other comment would be this unit is very heavy on batteries. I now take the batteries out between uses to save the battery life and never leave home without an extra pair of batteries. It's also quite heavy for it's size and fairly bulky so doesn't fit into a pocket easily.
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on 28 July 2016
Really small basic hand held GPS which gives an accurate reading. I like the compact size and durability of design which allows me carry same either hillwalking or cycling. Used with Ordinance survey maps one can pin point location whatever the pastime.   It is comparable to the Mageallan 210 that I have used for a number of years. Does not hold so many way points but has many of features of more expensive model and is much more compact. A useful tool for anyone with basic map and compass skills.
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