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Thread: Want to upgrade my GPS

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    Member skybust's Avatar
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    Default Want to upgrade my GPS

    Im looking to get a gps with a larger screen what do you guys think is a good gps for running the rivers Im on the big su mostly. Thanks for any info. Chris

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    Moderator kingfisherktn's Avatar
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    I used a Garmin 550t on our float hunt last year and it worked quite well for us. They aren't cheap and some complain about the screen being too hard to see in bright sunlight. REI let me take one outside their store in the bright light and was able to see the screen well enough to convince me to buy one for the trip.

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    Member JOAT's Avatar
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    Are we talking about handhelds or a dash mount?

    If you're looking at a handheld, go with the Garmin 76 or 78 marine handheld. Great unit. You can get a mounting bracket for use in the boat, and then put it in your pocket for use on the trail.

    If you want a mounted unit, I'd still go Garmin, but there are so many models to choose from. You want just GPS or do you also want a sounder?
    Winter is Coming...

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    Member akblackdawg's Avatar
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    I have a dash mounted garmin 520 which has a 5 in screen. Except for one major problem it is great. I errored when I bought it, it will not take the interior topo map of alaska. I do have the costal charts on it which goes inland a bit. Mine was only about $300 on ebay, discontinued unit. I would go the same route again, nothing wrong with units outdated, just be sure it will accept what software you need. Mine still shows the route, etc inland, just no river channels. Garmin does not have charts etc for interior alaska, you need to get the alaska topo map chip for it, and many units will accept it, but not the 520. When you find a unit you think is good, call Garmin mapsource in Anchorage and check with them to be sure it will work for you. The garmin has nice big 5" screen, adjustable backlite so you can see it in bright or night, and the normal routes/waypoints, etc. Bud
    Wasilla

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by skybust View Post
    Im looking to get a gps with a larger screen what do you guys think is a good gps for running the rivers Im on the big su mostly. Thanks for any info. Chris
    I used the 441s this year on my Nowitna hunt. After upgrading the software, I was able to install and use the 12K AK topo maps. Works well and was plenty big enough. Any new unit should already have the software upgrade. The 12k Topo is available through the GPS store in Anchorage or Beaver sports carries them in FAI. $99 for the Map card.

    441s Retails for $599.99 if your want a bigger model the 546 has the 5" screen and retails for $899.99. Both units have a built in antenna so there's no need for an external, even in an enclosed aluminum cabin. If your interested in one, shoot me a pm, we can save you some money off the retail cost.

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    Member FishKing's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JOAT View Post
    If you're looking at a handheld, go with the Garmin 76 or 78 marine handheld. Great unit. You can get a mounting bracket for use in the boat, and then put it in your pocket for use on the trail.

    If you want a mounted unit, I'd still go Garmin, but there are so many models to choose from. You want just GPS or do you also want a sounder?
    Hand held is good back up but dash mount that can be connected to dashmount radio is better. If you ever get in trouble and punch the panic button on the radio it sents the GPS coordinance out as well. Great idea IMO

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    Member skybust's Avatar
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    I have the Garmin hand held with a dash mount it works well but want a bigger screen halibutgrove Ill try and stop by the shop on Monday. Im going to put the old GPS on my side by side I want he new one to be hard mounted in the boat.

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    I recently purchased a Garmin 541 but have not yet installed it. The reason I went with the 541 was because it came preloaded with the blue water (salt) maps and it will accept the SD chip containing the Alaska topo map series.

    If you have any questions at all, contact Garmin by telephone. They are very helpful and will give you some straight forward advice.

    Amazon had the best price on the unit and with free shipping to boot.

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    Member skybust's Avatar
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    Thanks for the information Snowwolfe what did they charge

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    Quote Originally Posted by skybust View Post
    Thanks for the information Snowwolfe what did they charge
    $580, Google is your friend, lol
    http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00...00_i00_details

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    Member Ronster's Avatar
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    For $633 you can get the 541s with the transducer. Check places like www.thegpsstore.com and www.megagps.com before you buy. Dont buy it on ebay, you can find them a lot cheaper. The G2 chip is another $250 ish, add on the alaska chip for ?? But, you have a pretty nice unit when you are done.

    Only thing I would add to that setup is the GFS10 fuel sensor.

  12. #12
    Member skybust's Avatar
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    thanks guys trying to decide between the Garmin 546 and 441.

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    Skybust call derek I don't know which he has but it pretty nice..very nice.

    Sent from my Milestone X using Tapatalk
    Do I give my friends advice? Jesus, no. They wouldn't take advice from me. Nobody should take advice from me. I haven't got a clue about anything..

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    Member skybust's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by akmike30 View Post
    Skybust call derek I don't know which he has but it pretty nice..very nice.

    Sent from my Milestone X using Tapatalk
    Sound good mike thanks Chris

  15. #15

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    Quote Originally Posted by Halibutgrove View Post
    I used the 441s this year on my Nowitna hunt. After upgrading the software, I was able to install and use the 12K AK topo maps. Works well and was plenty big enough. Any new unit should already have the software upgrade. The 12k Topo is available through the GPS store in Anchorage or Beaver sports carries them in FAI. $99 for the Map card.

    441s Retails for $599.99 if your want a bigger model the 546 has the 5" screen and retails for $899.99. Both units have a built in antenna so there's no need for an external, even in an enclosed aluminum cabin. If your interested in one, shoot me a pm, we can save you some money off the retail cost.
    How good are the pre-loaded charts? Would you think the G2 vision upgrade necessary for "average Joe" applications? Impressive that you can get a signal through a hard top. I tried a Lowrance lms 527c df igps through a canvas top and reception was sketchy at best. Guess you get what you pay for.

  16. #16

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    Quote Originally Posted by Garyak View Post
    How good are the pre-loaded charts? Would you think the G2 vision upgrade necessary for "average Joe" applications? Impressive that you can get a signal through a hard top. I tried a Lowrance lms 527c df igps through a canvas top and reception was sketchy at best. Guess you get what you pay for.
    The preloaded charts are good. The 12K topo map worked well also but there were some areas on the Little Mud that showed us on land rather then on the river. I'd expect this for these type remote rivers but over all it worked very well. Originally install the 441s in my charter vessel as an emergency backup in case my standard plotter acted up. It definitely picks up through the aluminum cabin. I've had my external antenna quit on me twice over the years. Rerouting a new cable was always a pain. I much prefer these new built-in high sensitive receivers, negating the need for an external antenna.

  17. #17
    Member f0zzy2's Avatar
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    I just got a Montana 650. I haven't used it much outdoors so I don't know if it has the glare problems like the Oregan but I really like it so far. 4" screen and you can put the birds eye maps on there. Makes it look just like google earth in the palm of you hand. It's a pain having to download the maps from garmin a little at a time but I think it's worth it. Your also stuck having to buy a Garmin boat mount More $ but it's a really nice unit. I have a garmin 396 in the jet boat it's ok. The Montana will be in a on a temperary mount in the airboat, no depth finder needed

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