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Garmin Oregon 650
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3'' capacitive touchscreen ; Dual-band GPS/GLONASS antenna;6-axis compass & barometric altimeter sensors; ANT, Bluetooth(R) capable to wirelessly share routes, tracks, waypoints & geocaches between units; Dual orientation; Rugged & waterproofIPX-7; 8 megapixel camera with autofocus & LED flash/torch;Built-in basemap with DEM (digital elevation model) data;User-customizable button; Compatible with all Garmin(R) spine-mountable accessories, including bike mount, belt clip, carabiner clip, automotive mount, etc.; microSD(TM) Card slot;Requires 2 AA batteries or unit internal charger with optional 650T standard NiMH pack
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- Sunlight readable display is fabulous. I wish all laptops and nav screens in cars looked like this. Also, adjusting the backlight is super easy which you want to do regularly in actual field use.
- User interface is mostly good and intuitive (* see below). Considering how many features are in the product, pretty good design.
- Packaging is excellent. Unlike phones, this unit is actually rugged. Buttons are in the right place, Battery door and belt strap work well, etc.
OK, now for the bad news:
(1) It crashes. I read other reviews but figured that had to be fixed by June 2016. Nope. The trip computer will simply cease functioning, except for its clock. No amount clearing this and that and unlocking fields fixes this problem. It's batteries out, wait, and also factory reset. Then, you lose your settings. Garmin makes avionics products. I can say I would never put a Garmin unit in my plane, if I had one. In a high-end product like this there is no excuse for it to crash.
(2) Setting preferences for the trip computer is essentially impossible without reading the manual and practicing. Unlike most else, this is 100% non-intuitive. The + button doesn't add fields; the - button doesn't remove fields. One wrong guess and you have just deleted everything. You really need to have instructions available, on the unit, with a ?? key to get to them. That, or redo the interface for trip computer completely.
(3) Elevation does not work. Really. Typical (not average) error is more than 30 feet. Worse, total ascent and total descent are so far off that dead reckoning is more accurate. On a short loop hike it had 620 feet up and 850 feet down. Repeating the same loop was even worse.I did calibration twice, and it ignores that almost immediately. And, this is with 7 satellites in view! Come on guy, there has to be a fix this. You can't even get the elevation the same for the same spot.
(4) It remembers only one trip computer results. If that. This is nuts. A real hiker wants to compare morning to afternoon and day-to day. You store 10,000 waypoints (For whom, Lewis & Clarke?) but not even a single trip. You could have little trip selection screen, like you do for waypoints.
* I got 6-8 hours from one set of alkaline batteries. CARRY EXTRA BATTERIES. Rechargeable batteries are probably a bad idea if you want to get one full day of hiking. Keep the display light OFF.
* Turn on lock-display always. The touch screen is sensitive and the unit will wander off into the most bizarre menus if you don't. No matter where you put it, the screen will think there are touches.
* Take some time to learn the unit. You can customize just about any display.
* The computer and download map interface is very funky. Just so you know.
* Crashes regularly. The trip computer is effectively worthless because it crashes before, during or after each trip. How am I sure that the unit has "crashed?" Well--full batteries, bright display, nothing works, cannot even turn off.
If you wanna complain that the gps only gets you within 2 meters of a geocache, instead of 1, well get over it. These things can pinpoint your position anywhere in the world within 3 to 5 meters, from a source miles above your head, moving at very fast speeds, guess what, there's going to be some amount of error.
Handheld gps units are made for getting around and adventuring through the special areas of the world, WITHOUT cell towers, so stop comparing the navigation accuracy of these with a cell phone.
Learn some basic map and compass skills, partner it with the gps instead of relying on the electronics and you will never be lost unless you want to be. If you want to find the nearest coffee shop or indrustrial chic hipster pub, well it can probably do that as well, but it would be best for everyone if you stopped trying to be "outdoorsey", whatever the hell that means.
In all the 600t is great. It's very user friendly with only a few basic tech skills. Screen resolution is great. Touch response is good. Processor is fast enough to do anything you'll need to. At a ~250 price point, it's a great deal for a superb handheld.