ENTRY LEVEL GPS UNIT THAT CAN TAKE DOWNLOADS
~ Captain Paul's response to: ~ Robert Berry ~
Any GPS would work, but on some you may have to manually enter the positions into the unit. The main feature is the ability to DOWNLOAD the data into the GPS unit. The download saves you countless hours of manually entering the data.
Take a look at the Garmin “ETREX 10” at about a Suggested Retail Price at $ 119.99 USD it is shown on the Garmin Web site under part Number: 010-00970-00. (https://buy.garmin.com/shop/shop.do?cID=144&pID=87768)
It has a base map that cannot be supplemented with accessory mapping programs. It can accept downloads via the free Garmin Data transfer program called BASE CAMP. eTrex 10 has an enhanced 2.2' monochrome display that’s easy to read in any lighting situation. The eTrex 10 comes with a USB connecting cable that allows you to connect it to a PC computer. Using the BASE CAMP program from the web site (http://www.garmin.com/us/products/onthetrail/basecamp) you can install the Captain Paul’s EDGE FILES into the BASE CAMP program then download the waypoint data via the program and the USB cable to your eTerex unit.
This is a very basic system but has the WAAS feature that provides you an accuracy of within a radius of 3 meters. It can hold up to 1000 waypoints, 50 routes and 100 saved tracks. It is a hand held unit that runs on two AA size batteries.
There are other units in the market, so compare them all. Use the eTrex 10 as a starting point. The main features you need are the ability to accept downloads either via a connecting cable and or the ability to accept memory cards.
Color screens, larger screens, interchangeable maps, compasses, cameras, and other such features all add to the cost. In choosing the unit, be sure to get the accessory 12 volt supply cable for the unit. It will save you money by allowing you to use the 12 volt supply of your boat or car rather than the internal batteries.
~ Captain Paul ~