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Advice wanted on SatNav

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Advice wanted on SatNav

My friend is on the lookout for a Satellite Navigation device. Her requirements are:
Not TomTom (she has one and it has not been reliable)
Easily updatable with Vista
Have postcode  facility
This country only (won't be going abroad with it)
Must be reliable
Most importantly must be simple to use (we are only women after all).
Does anyone have any advice to offer please regarding suitable makes/model numbers?
22 REPLIES
pierre_pierre
Grafter
Posts: 19,757
Registered: 30-07-2007

Re: Advice wanted on SatNav

When you say easily updated with Vista, do you mean use Vista to update it?  most but not all use Windows CE. but can be updated with poi (points of interest), some have MP3 players, some have traffic news, some have dynamic map updates.
For the Latest news and unbiased opinion, and if you take out a subscription, speed camera updates at least once a month see http://www.pocketgpsworld.com/
I have had a multitude of Sat Nav devices, some, even if bought last week have maps about 2 years old, some cant be updated, some include all the bits you need, - cost from £70 up to £400
Hope thats for starters
PS Just got one that had Traffic management via RDS radio for less than £100
N/A

Re: Advice wanted on SatNav

Please excuse my ignorance - I don't have much idea about this, which is why I have asked for advice.
Yes, it needs to be updated via Vista. I used to have a Road Angel with the speed camera alert on it and it was quite simple to update it - I used to plug it into the USB port and connect to Update and that was it - all done in a jiffy.  At the time I had XP and couldn't update it when I changed to Vista because the company (Road Angel) hadn't sorted it out.  I assume that the updates were more to do with the speed camera side of things rather than the navigation software.  Updates like POI are not important - all that is required is just a simple, bog standard satnav to get from a to b. It is just updates for road changes that are necessary.
I am going to have a look at your link to see if I can get any ideas.
Community Veteran
Posts: 6,735
Thanks: 12
Registered: 02-02-2008

Re: Advice wanted on SatNav

At the risk of being accused of flippancy, dare I say that being female you wouldn't be afraid to ask for directions - whereas us men are of course too proud!  Crazy
More relevant, is this for private car use only or pedestrian, cycle, commercial vehicle etc.?
jmd
Grafter
Posts: 2,933
Thanks: 2
Registered: 30-07-2007

Re: Advice wanted on SatNav

I would like sat nav - but my problem is the directions are in an electronic voice.  I have hearing problems [don't hear anything high pitched[car alarms] at all, have little medium pitch hearing so most of my hearing is at low pitch.  Consonants are generally high pitched so electronic voices are very difficult.  Hearing aids do not help very much.
And when driving on your  own you cannot keep looking down at a small screen or whoops there goes another pedestrian!
If you have company - no problem - give them the map!
Community Veteran
Posts: 16,834
Thanks: 1,124
Fixes: 13
Registered: 06-11-2007

Re: Advice wanted on SatNav

I have never used sat nav..... Whenever I got to go to somewhere  I do not know, first thing I do, is get the post code of the destination...... put that into GOOGLE and you get a map of the area....  next I use a routefinder map software , AA, to get the route...... Print it out, and take the copy with you....
I am fortunate, that I have a very good sense of direction, even when driving in a strange area, and can tell when I am going in the wrong direction within a hundred yards of taking the wrong turn...
If you can read the main routes, from A to D via C , then itemise the towns and roads between on a small square of paper or postcard, and stick it to the dashboard with bluetack...... print out the map from google for the final destination.....
Good luck...
pierre_pierre
Grafter
Posts: 19,757
Registered: 30-07-2007

Re: Advice wanted on SatNav

Josie, on my latest I can change the voice between female (high) and male (lower)
Poppy the Road Angel Which one?
The site I gave has a list of all the various devices that they support and full instructions how to load onto you Sat Nav
sample for tom tom
at the bottom of the home page on the first link is a link to a "Road Test" report from Which magazine of 58 devices
jmd
Grafter
Posts: 2,933
Thanks: 2
Registered: 30-07-2007

Re: Advice wanted on SatNav

Fortunately I do have a good sense of direction too - and I keep piece of paper on top of map with road numbers on etc but it would still be nice just to follow someone's directions by hearing it!
I usually find need to refer to map when it is always double yellow lines or there are no signposts at junction.  I quite often go round roundabouts twice to make sure I am using right exit!!
Yes, even if you change voice from high to low you can still lose part of the message -  and whilst working out what has been said you have lost your way!
I have travelled with a friend who has a sat nav that changes voices but still cannot tell what they are saying!
mind you my comments do not help Poppy though!
Community Veteran
Posts: 38,251
Thanks: 937
Fixes: 56
Registered: 15-06-2007

Re: Advice wanted on SatNav

At present the Garmin Webupdater won't run under Vista - that takes out a big chunk of the market
Community Veteran
Posts: 1,886
Registered: 05-04-2007

Re: Advice wanted on SatNav

I personally have a NAVMAN F20, and their updating software works over the Vista platform
Unfortunately, they don't do subscription map updates, they only update the speed camera POI (Point of Interests) if you have a subscription with them.
However I did find the Navman very easy to use, but don't buy their spares from their online store, you're better off either buying them on ebay or getting them from Halfords as they are significantly cheaper, and are the genuine part.
Have a poke at the Navman site (www.navman.com) and see what you think.
Roger,
Community Veteran
Posts: 7,149
Thanks: 51
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Registered: 30-08-2007

Re: Advice wanted on SatNav

At the expense of being controversial (would I be) I think Sat-Nav is one of the great techno con-tricks. The technology was invented (for military purposes) and have now foisted it on the paying to "fill the coffers" public. Just what is wrong with road signs and a map? got on very well with them before Sat-Nav came along.
But I expect the health n Saftey police will get around to having it banned as another (along with smoking, eating, drinking, listening to radio, using phone etc. etc.) distraction to driving
Experience; is something you gain, just after you needed it most.

When faced with two choices, simply toss a coin. It works not because it settles the question for you. But because in that brief moment while the coin is in the air. You suddenly know what you are hoping for.
pierre_pierre
Grafter
Posts: 19,757
Registered: 30-07-2007

Re: Advice wanted on SatNav

What you have just said is pretty well correct, Used to be an expression GIGO - Garbage in Garbage out.  You have to take some of the directions with a pinch os salt, a pinch bigger than my heart likes.
My newest one has a road that was opened last year, but a main road in town has a road marked as one way that has been two way at least 5 years, Sat Nav insist I should turn round.  Then you hear stories of people taking diversions down cart tracks and through deep fords.
They need intelligent setting up, do you want the shortest or quickest routes, do you want motorways or country roads.  and why do they call dual carriageway road Motorways?, dont they know the road rules are different.
Yes I always check out the route on a map before I start out, but it is a help when you are in places you dont know.
Lastly, I am not sure if the Law has changed, but you are not allowed to have a moving screen in view of the Driver, does that include Sat Nav?
N/A

Re: Advice wanted on SatNav

Thanks for all the replies. The Road Angel that we had was the 6000 I think - it was bought for the speed camera side of things but not for me, I might add - I never speed!  TBH it was too much bother so we got rid of it.  The only good thing was that it was a geographical telephone number for support and the lady at the end of the line was very nice and helpful. Personally, like a previous writer I generally put the information into Toyota GetMeThere or the AA site and print it off.
I checked out the Navman site but couldn't find a telephone number for support - I think that this is important for any product.  Trawling through help pages can be a real pain when you end up not finding the answer anyway.
My friend feels that she needs a satnav because as a widow she drives about on her own and therefore would be reluctant to stop and ask people the way. 
The TomTom is still around but we can't get it it to update.  Vista is recognising it as a USB device but when won't actually connect to update. I wonder if it is because the memory card is almost full. I have looked on the TomTom website and can't find the answer so maybe it is time to telephone them. the other thing is that the voice has virtually disappeared.  It seems to need a good overhaul and update but I don't know how.
N/A

Re: Advice wanted on SatNav

Yes, the software installed correctly, but it won't connect. Have trawled through the webpages on the TomTom site but no joy.
Rikaitch
Grafter
Posts: 212
Registered: 08-06-2007

Re: Advice wanted on SatNav

I personally have Tom Tom Navigator 6 on my Nokia N95, and a little bluetooth GPS receiver (about £30) in the car. This means I have loads of benefits over other Tom Tom Users.

  • I can update by just downloading the maps on the SD memory card in a card reader

  • I can search for contacts in my phone's address book, and navigate to their address

  • Appointments can be set, and Tom Tom will tell me when to leave to get there on time


The main downside is it eats your battery of your phone (I leave mine plugged in when it's in use). It can also be a bit fiddly typing in an address using the phone's keypad. Tom Tom have had mapshare available for a few months now, and this means that it is becoming more reliable. Unfortunately the n95 isn't completely supported by TomTom yet, but it's still the lesser of several evils.