Top positive review
369 people found this helpful
on 27 November 2012
I bought this in October 2012 and after having used it for a few weeks, thought it's time for a review.
When shopping around for this unit, note that the "LM" in the 2445LMT model number means live maps (=free map updates for life - that's the life of the unit, not me!) and the "T" means live traffic which is picked up from FM transmitters scattered round the country. You can buy a Nuvi 2445 without the LMT for around 30 pounds less. But the LMT features sound like useful things to have especially as there are no extra charges once you buy the unit. There is also a 2495LMT model (which has bluetooth and voice control) and there are also 2545LMT and 2595LMT models which are large screen variants (5 inch screens instead of 4.3 inch screens).
There are numerous design changes from the old Nuvi 760 I owned, so it took a little getting used to. Instead of "recently found" you have to use "history" to call up locations you asked it to find in the past. Garmins always show the arrival time on the main map but this unit also shows the current speed on the main map view. (you can change this to show other data if you wish) but I find it useful to be able to check the current speed. On one of the sub panels you can access a couple of trip meters and things like your average speed, time spend stationery etc.
The map contains preloaded speed limits for almost all roads and shows this on screen. It beeps when you enter a speed camera area and then beeps repeatedly if your speed is above the speed limit in the camera area. However, be warned that near and around villages the indicated limit is sometimes wrong - so you do still need to pay attention to speed limit signs. There is a fee to pay if you want to update the speed camera database. The junction view comes up to show which lane you should be in when at major junctions on motorways. Another improvement over the 760 is that it shows a mini preview of the next turn or roundabout so that you know what is coming up next. The unit also pops up icons to show petrol stations, eating places etc. as you are driving around. I assume this can be turned off if you find it annoying.
The power cable contains the FM radio receiver which picks up the traffic information. It is rather bulky and ungainly and much thicker than the non-traffic cable you'd get with a basic 2445 - fortunately the Nuvi itself is quite light, otherwise I'd be worried about the cable pulling the unit off the windscreen mount. I went to the expense of buying a mini-USB extension cable to allow me to position the radio receiver nearer the windscreen (for better reception) but unfortunately the power cable stopped powering the Nuvi when I did this. Not sure if the extension cable was faulty or whether the power cable contains proprietary wiring. The first trip I took, I ended up in a 40 minute traffic jam and wondered why the Nuvi hadn't alerted me. It turns out that apart from plugging the cable in, you also have to enable traffic signal reception in one of the panels in the unit! According to the instructions the traffic icon is green if there is no traffic hold up, red if there's a traffic problem and grey if there's no reception but I am sure it showed green that first time. Since that first instance, it has alerted me a couple of times and automatically suggested a new route. So I think the feature works, but I still haven't worked out how to get it to show me a comparison of the new route vs the old route. Since the traffic info depends on FM transmitters around the country I expect it to only work on major roads, i.e. it isn't going to be infallible - there is a crude map of the coverage on Garmin's website but it's impossible to decipher.
I've used the unit to take me to a few new places and it's got me there each time so no complaints there, although it did choose a slightly unusual route once. It is very fast at recalculating a route so if you don't like its suggestions you can just carry on and within a couple of seconds it will start to guide you on the new route. Overall very pleased.
1) A lot of people have asked - does Western Europe cover the UK? Yes!
2) Can the unit be used straight out of the box? Yes! Many of the negative reviews are from people who tried to update the unit and found that they had to buy an extra memory card and spend several hours downloading large files from Garmin - and even ended up bricking the unit.
3) The speed camera alert can be a single beep or continuous. In settings, scroll down to "proximity alerts" then "audio" then choose single tone or continuous tone. Also under settings, choose "map and vehicle" scroll down to "audible speed alerts" and make sure this is ticked.
4) The unit accepts microSD cards for map upgrades. Another reviewer mentioned that Garmin suggested using 4GB. I fitted a 8GB and although I've not done a map update yet, files which were present on the microSD card were readable when unit was attached to a PC.