Author Topic: Garmin etrex models - what's the difference and what's important?  (Read 2799 times)

Phil W

Re: Garmin etrex models - what's the difference and what's important?
« Reply #25 on: July 28, 2018, 02:27:56 pm »
Be wary of powering an Etrex on the go. I did that on rattly / rough roads and it trashed the usb socket necessitating me getting a reconditioned unit as replacement.  Only just managed to get my track logs off the device on the dodgy connection.

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: Garmin etrex models - what's the difference and what's important?
« Reply #26 on: July 28, 2018, 02:32:15 pm »
Yes, the design of the mini-USB socket is such that the delicate springy part is in the socket on the device, rather than the plug on the cable, which limits its lifetime.  Micro-USB is much better in this respect (it's still quite delicate, but it's much more likely to be the easily-replaced cable end that gets damaged).

Garmin have stuck with mini-USB for far too long.  I assume because it's easier to waterproof[1].


[1] In the sense of water not getting into the device via the socket, not the sense of the socket being usable in the wet.
Careful, Kim. Your sarcasm's showing...

Re: Garmin etrex models - what's the difference and what's important?
« Reply #27 on: July 28, 2018, 02:32:26 pm »
good tip phil

sounds sensible to me.

USB ports are pretty delicate stationary inside.

Seems the top tips to me are:

get an Etrex 20/30
use a lanyard
Don't connect external power on the move.

For anyone wanting to recharge their two AAs on the road (ie stopped in a tent) from a powerbank, I can recommend this.

https://www.ikea.com/gb/en/products/smart-home-appliances/cables-chargers/vinninge-battery-charger-art-40303632/

A mere £1.80

Remarkably it seems to work fine.

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: Garmin etrex models - what's the difference and what's important?
« Reply #28 on: July 28, 2018, 02:36:57 pm »
For anyone wanting to recharge their two AAs on the road (ie stopped in a tent) from a powerbank, I can recommend this.

https://www.ikea.com/gb/en/products/smart-home-appliances/cables-chargers/vinninge-battery-charger-art-40303632/

A mere £1.80

Remarkably it seems to work fine.

Separate channels, nice.  That should avoid cell balancing issues if you use it long-term, and means that you can deal with odd numbers of cells (eg. head torches with 3 AAAs).

(I've got a cheap and lightweight two-cell USB charger that I use for touring which charges them in series.  Fine for occasional use, but not ideal.)
Careful, Kim. Your sarcasm's showing...

Phil W

Re: Garmin etrex models - what's the difference and what's important?
« Reply #29 on: July 28, 2018, 02:47:32 pm »
[1] In the sense of water not getting into the device via the socket, not the sense of the socket being usable in the wet.

The Etrex USB socket works very well in heavy rain. The rubber cover ends up facing forward keeping rain off from the front. The socket it below the unit stopping heavy rain from above getting in. So provided you have good mudguards using in rain on handlebars not an issue other than it breaking under vibration.

Phil W

Re: Garmin etrex models - what's the difference and what's important?
« Reply #30 on: July 28, 2018, 02:49:33 pm »
good tip phil

sounds sensible to me.

USB ports are pretty delicate stationary inside.

Seems the top tips to me are:

get an Etrex 20/30
use a lanyard
Don't connect external power on the move.

For anyone wanting to recharge their two AAs on the road (ie stopped in a tent) from a powerbank, I can recommend this.

https://www.ikea.com/gb/en/products/smart-home-appliances/cables-chargers/vinninge-battery-charger-art-40303632/

A mere £1.80

Remarkably it seems to work fine.

I use a lanyard taken from a camera that does not really need the security in the places I use it.

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: Garmin etrex models - what's the difference and what's important?
« Reply #31 on: July 28, 2018, 02:52:56 pm »
[1] In the sense of water not getting into the device via the socket, not the sense of the socket being usable in the wet.

The Etrex USB socket works very well in heavy rain. The rubber cover ends up facing forward keeping rain off from the front. The socket it below the unit stopping heavy rain from above getting in. So provided you have good mudguards using in rain on handlebars not an issue other than it breaking under vibration.

Depends on your riding position.  On my recumbents the eTrex faces backwards rather than upwards, so the socket it quite exposed.  On the Brompton it's at about a 45 degree angle, although well out of spash range.
Careful, Kim. Your sarcasm's showing...

Re: Garmin etrex models - what's the difference and what's important?
« Reply #32 on: July 29, 2018, 12:32:49 pm »
I'm struggling to  get my new  Etrex30 to alarm on waypoints. - As  you approach  a  junction Ping and  display  'R-SP-York'- Can anyone give tips please? I have gone through this guide http://www.aukadia.net/gps/lwg_20.htm

Cudzoziemiec

  • Solar powered, tea fuelled cycle-wol
Re: Garmin etrex models - what's the difference and what's important?
« Reply #33 on: July 29, 2018, 12:39:46 pm »
Nahh, the eTrex won't actually charge its batteries, it'll just use power from the USB port instead of them.
Ahh, that makes more sense.
"Pick a flower on Earth and you move the farthest star." Dirac.

Re: Garmin etrex models - what's the difference and what's important?
« Reply #34 on: July 29, 2018, 02:42:28 pm »
I'm struggling to  get my new  Etrex30 to alarm on waypoints. - As  you approach  a  junction Ping and  display  'R-SP-York'- Can anyone give tips please? I have gone through this guide http://www.aukadia.net/gps/lwg_20.htm

I think you have to set the proximity alarm for each waypoint.  I do that in a mapping program prior to uploading to the Etrex.

frankly frankie

  • I kid you not
    • Fuchsiaphile
Re: Garmin etrex models - what's the difference and what's important?
« Reply #35 on: July 29, 2018, 04:08:16 pm »
I think you only have a max of 10 proximity points unfortunately.  Best reserved for info controls.  (If you create more than 10, any extra ones are just downgraded to ordinary waypoints during import.)

I haven't noticed my E30 bleeping during Track-with-Waypoints navigation, but displaying the Waypoint name and Distance-to-next works well** (although on the E20/30 the font is very small for the waypoint name, really poor compared with the older models).

** fairly well - the interspersed 'high point' and 'low point' flags do mess it up a bit in typical undulating UK lanes, and there doesn't seem to be any reasonable way to switch these off.  They work better in the Alps of course!

If following a Route it will bleep for an upcoming Waypoint though not loud enough for my likeing, haven't really explored the pop-up options if any.

It's not dark yet but it's getting there.

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: Garmin etrex models - what's the difference and what's important?
« Reply #36 on: July 29, 2018, 05:02:09 pm »
I haven't noticed my E30 bleeping during Track-with-Waypoints navigation

Me neither.  I suspect this is one of the useful things that vanished in the upgrade from the HCx models.

If I want beeps, I put the effort in and coax auto-routing to do the right thing.

Otherwise, proximity alarms for (info) controls only.
Careful, Kim. Your sarcasm's showing...

Re: Garmin etrex models - what's the difference and what's important?
« Reply #37 on: July 29, 2018, 11:15:44 pm »
I haven't noticed my E30 bleeping during Track-with-Waypoints navigation

Me neither.  I suspect this is one of the useful things that vanished in the upgrade from the HCx models.

If I want beeps, I put the effort in and coax auto-routing to do the right thing.

Otherwise, proximity alarms for (info) controls only.

I've only used it for controls (so limited numbers).

Cudzoziemiec

  • Solar powered, tea fuelled cycle-wol
Re: Garmin etrex models - what's the difference and what's important?
« Reply #38 on: July 30, 2018, 09:09:16 am »
I think you only have a max of 10 proximity points unfortunately.  Best reserved for info controls.  (If you create more than 10, any extra ones are just downgraded to ordinary waypoints during import.)

I haven't noticed my E30 bleeping during Track-with-Waypoints navigation, but displaying the Waypoint name and Distance-to-next works well** (although on the E20/30 the font is very small for the waypoint name, really poor compared with the older models).
I thought you could alter the font size.

Quote
** fairly well - the interspersed 'high point' and 'low point' flags do mess it up a bit in typical undulating UK lanes, and there doesn't seem to be any reasonable way to switch these off.  They work better in the Alps of course!

If following a Route it will bleep for an upcoming Waypoint though not loud enough for my likeing, haven't really explored the pop-up options if any.


Those high point and low point markers are mostly somewhat useless. It's not really terribly interesting to know that you're at a high point if the difference is only a couple of metres.
"Pick a flower on Earth and you move the farthest star." Dirac.

Re: Garmin etrex models - what's the difference and what's important?
« Reply #39 on: July 30, 2018, 10:18:06 am »
Oh, that sounds as if it will never do exactly  what I want it to..
Sleep with the screen off until 30m before turn points and then wake up for 60 seconds.
But there is workaround (that I have yet to find ) involving auto routing. Does that need additional routable mapping?

frankly frankie

  • I kid you not
    • Fuchsiaphile
Re: Garmin etrex models - what's the difference and what's important?
« Reply #40 on: July 30, 2018, 11:42:50 am »
Currently Etrexes are normally sold with 'Garmin Topoactive' map pre-installed.  That is routable (though I wouldn't want to rely on it too much) and covers UK and nearby Europe.
But having the screen backlight come on before a turn should work with direct Routes (non-autorouting) as well.  Just not with navigating-by-Track.  The real advantage of autorouting is that it requres a bit less prep (but NB not no prep).

Those high point and low point markers are mostly somewhat useless. It's not really terribly interesting to know that you're at a high point if the difference is only a couple of metres.

If you have a waymarked turn and a high/low point gets inserted shortly before it, it really messes up your valuable 'Distance-to-next' information.  I would be tempted to remove whatever base map is being used to supply this information, but I'm not sure which one it is.
It's not dark yet but it's getting there.

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: Garmin etrex models - what's the difference and what's important?
« Reply #41 on: July 30, 2018, 11:51:10 am »
The real advantage of autorouting is that it requres a bit less prep (but NB not no prep).

I'd say it involves more prep, but that's because I don't usually want it to send me on a magical mystery tour.
Careful, Kim. Your sarcasm's showing...

Re: Garmin etrex models - what's the difference and what's important?
« Reply #42 on: July 30, 2018, 02:05:34 pm »
Confused! I don't want to randomly autoroute. If I have enough defined waypoints will that nail it down?

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: Garmin etrex models - what's the difference and what's important?
« Reply #43 on: July 30, 2018, 02:21:53 pm »
Confused! I don't want to randomly autoroute. If I have enough defined waypoints will that nail it down?

Nearly always yes, for extremely variable values of 'enough'.  Therein lies the rub.  Every now and then you come across some section of road that the algorithm will - for no obvious reason - go to extreme lengths to avoid.  Usually you can lay down enough routepoints to persuade it, but there are occasional exceptions.

Similarly, auto-routing is much more sensitive to gaps in the map.  If a section of road is missing (eg, because it's technically two dead-end roads joined by a footpath, or a road that's just randomly absent from the map), you can hand-wave over it in an off-road Route or Track, as they're not tied to the map.  But auto-routing has no allowance for that sort of thing.  You can bung a routepoint at your dead end, and another on the other side, but you can't stop it from leading you round the houses to get from one to the other.  My preferred approach is to add a waypoint (with proximity alarm if needed) reminding me to ignore the auto-routing for a bit.

The pragmatic approach to using auto-routing for audax type rides is to back it up with a visible Track.  That way you get the convenience of reminder beeps and highly visible instructions, but if it does something suspicious (eg. leading you downhill  :)) you have an easy way to quickly confirm whether or not it's talking bollocks.


I appreciate that it's a hard problem, but it shouldn't be this hard.
Careful, Kim. Your sarcasm's showing...

Re: Garmin etrex models - what's the difference and what's important?
« Reply #44 on: July 30, 2018, 07:16:10 pm »
I have got into the habit of glancing at the screen whenever a junction looms.  So just a dumb track works fine for me.

Re: Garmin etrex models - what's the difference and what's important?
« Reply #45 on: July 30, 2018, 08:48:13 pm »
Thanks Kim and  Ian .. .I shall practice navigation on some familiar routes.. 

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: Garmin etrex models - what's the difference and what's important?
« Reply #46 on: July 30, 2018, 09:15:08 pm »
Thanks Kim and  Ian .. .I shall practice navigation on some familiar routes..

That's the key: Practice.  Like everything else in cycling, what works best for you isn't always what works best for other people, and the best way to work out what doesn't is when it's just a bike ride.
Careful, Kim. Your sarcasm's showing...

Re: Garmin etrex models - what's the difference and what's important?
« Reply #47 on: August 01, 2018, 08:35:20 am »
I also just use a simple gpx track and check screen as a junction approaches, with my old Etrex Vista HCx.  To improve the thin track line visibility on screen, I often overlay two tracks which have been reduced to max 500 points, using two different websites/ programs*, and so are slightly 'mismatched'.

*e.g. ridewithgps/winGDB3/basecamp
Destroying rainforest for economic gain is like burning a Renaissance painting to cook a meal.  EOW.