Oregon 550T

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  • 01-12-2011
    Oregon 550T
    So I've been looking for a new GPS to replace my Magellan Explorist 500 and its frustrating user interface for some time now. I've been reading over the threads on this board and a few others and decided on either the DeLorme PN60 or the Garmin Oregon 550.So I headed down to my local REI with a pile of xmas gift cards and my annual dividend to compare the units side by side and I was kind of disappointed by the PN60's small screen and slow operation and long acquisition time(might have been caused by proximity to the building or operator error..). The salesperson encouraged me to look into the GPSmap 62st they had but it seemed to be a bit bulky and I was worried about the possibility of the antenna snagging on things when mounted on my bike.

    So I ended up buying the Oregon 550t and so far it seems to be a lot better and easier to use than my magellan is but I wanted to ask the GPS Gurus here if I am losing any functionality other than the better antenna by choosing the oregon over the GPSmap 62 or PN60?

    And what rescources are out there other than topofusion and Garmin Connect?

    oh and I forgot to mention I will be using the GPS mostly for mtn biking/hiking but also for kayaking/boating, geocaching and for navigation on my motorcycles.

    Thanks in advance for any advice offered
  • 01-12-2011
    Information missing from manual...
    This is a good resource for information; Look at the headings under "Knowledge Base"on the left hand column.
    Also has beta and legacy legacy firmware.

  • 01-12-2011
    No, you're not losing out on any functionality. The better antenna would only be a marginal improvement, IMO.

    Since you got a "T" model, you won't be in need of much for topo maps, but there may still be some useful vector maps at www.gpsfiledepot.com, especially some transparent trail maps you can overlay on top of your existing topo maps or satellite imagery you get from Topofusion. Browse through there on occasion to see if anything useful for your area of interest turns up.

    There's a HUGE variety of data sharing sites, beyond just Garmin Connect. Get to know them. I cover a lot of them in a post on my website.

    If you don't have it already, download a copy of Google Earth. You can use it with your GPS. I use it when I am creating .kml or .kmz files with waypoints or trail data, because it gives me more control than a lot of other software over what gets displayed in the popouts when you click a feature on the map.

    For geocaching, get a copy of GSAK (Geocaching Swiss Army Knife) if you don't have it already.
  • 01-13-2011
    thanks for the replies, that was the just the kind of info I was looking for :thumbsup:

    the pages are bookmarked and I'm off to learn how to use this thing....