Best Handheld GPS?
March 30, 2008 11:32 AM   Subscribe

Hi, Read the previous posts. Want/need handheld GPS for hiking in the woods, what is a good unit for tree cover and what is waas and sirfs? Thanks.
posted by jara1953 to Science & Nature (7 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
WAAS is a means of deriving extra accuracy from the satellites. Not sure about "sirfs."
posted by fogster at 12:18 PM on March 30, 2008

SIRF is a GPS chipset.

I suggest you browse through
posted by mphuie at 12:22 PM on March 30, 2008

Maybe you could read the forms at folks walk around in the woods, deserts, etc looking for caches so they probably know best what works. Here is the noob forum (I think you have to make a free membership to post)
posted by fieldtrip at 1:29 PM on March 30, 2008

Here is that getting started - forums link
posted by fieldtrip at 1:31 PM on March 30, 2008

I have the DeLorme PN-20 and really like it. It comes with a pretty good topo program and transfers easily. THe overall interface for the software isn't the most elegant, but none that I've used are that great. Battery life could be better, but will easily last a full day left on.

I was trying to decide between this, the Garmin 60CSx, and the Magellan Xplorist XL. They all have their pluses and minuses, I guess, but I think it makes sense to get a good GPS and look in this price range. I've heard that many people prefer the 60CSx over the 70 series, but forget what the reasoning was.

I figure that a GPS might be something I need in an emergency, and I'd hate myself if I got the GPSAwesomeTraveller version 505 instead of the version 510 because it was missing the one feature that would have saved my life, but I thought I would save $15.

Oh, and seconded. GPS info is really hard to come by for some reason. Find the models that have the features you want and Google for reviews of each. THat's what worked best for me.
posted by neuroking at 1:33 PM on March 30, 2008

Garmin fan, here... three handhelds and an auto unit

My weapon of choice is the upper end of the 60 series (spend the extra money and get the electronic compass, too). Personally, I do not like the 70 series for the form factor (the 60 is easier for me to hold) and it has some boating-specific tools that serve none of my purposes. (I have had a 70 series gps of my own but switched to a 60 series... my partner has a 70 series now.)

Nthing the suggestion for reading up/asking questions on

How much money do you want to spend? What's the absolute max... not a price range. I'm definitely of the mind that you want to get the best unit you can possibly afford. These days with the new sirf chips it's a lot harder to go wrong... but some are definitely better than others.

Also, what do you intend to do with while you are 'hiking' in the woods.
posted by Incognita at 5:36 PM on March 30, 2008

Garmin 60CSx is very hard to beat.

The new Colorado series looks interesting, has all sorts of cool wireless features, but I haven't yet seen one so can't give more than speculation as to how well they hold up in the field.

I've been hiking, geocaching, driving, and generally abusing my 60CSx since summer '06 and it's never let me down.

(60CSx vs 76CSx basically boils down to - the 60 is smaller but doesn't float. also has the buttons on the bottom, not the top. I like the 60 form factor, but YMMV)
posted by devbrain at 8:49 PM on March 30, 2008

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