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  1. #1
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    New Garmin handheld(s). Next improvement for trail scouting/mapping GPS? x-post GPS

    Original thread.

    http://forums.mtbr.com/gps-hrm-bike-computer/new-garmins-pushing-high-end-envelope-starting-toy-trimbles-low-end-848077.html


    An Android-powered Garmin handheld with additional sensors? With a $700 price tag, do you think something like this would help mapping and scouting tasks? It undercuts low end Trimbles by a significant margin, but does it get better reception than Garmin's other handhelds?

    So, if it did get better accuracy than Garmin's other handhelds, would you consider buying one for trailbuilding jobs? What if it's equally accurate? Worth it?

    For $700, I think it had better have improved accuracy. Some new chipset or way to use differential corrections or something. The pages I linked in the thread above suggest this is geared towards a more technical crowd than the recreation market Garmin currently targets. Seems like improved accuracy over a consumer handheld would be a requirement or at least strongly desired. What say ye?

  2. #2
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    I don't think there's much more accuracy to be gained from a high sensativity, good antenna, WAAS handheld.

    The next technology bump is adding a DGPS reciever.

    If a new DGPS-like technology emerges, that will be the ticket to latch on to.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by beechnut View Post
    I don't think there's much more accuracy to be gained from a high sensativity, good antenna, WAAS handheld.

    The next technology bump is adding a DGPS reciever.

    If a new DGPS-like technology emerges, that will be the ticket to latch on to.
    the ability to post-process the raw data with DGPS ground station corrections would make quite a difference, I think.

    For waypoints, we already have averaging, and we can return to a point on different days to update the averaged points and obtain an even better point.

    For track data, some kind of differential corrections would be necessary.

    But, with the information we have, it does not appear that anything like that will be part of the handheld's hardware unless the FM receiver could be leveraged some way. would you spend $700 for a Monterra considering that it will likely be a semi-rugged (Garmin handhelds are not mil-spec ruggedized) Android handheld (no phone), with wifi, bt 4.0, ANT+, NFC, geotagging camera with flash, 1080p video, 3-axis compass, accelerometer, gyroscope, barometric altimeter, waterproof mic and speaker with headphone jack, FM/weather radio, and the option to use the rechargeable Li-ion pack or 3-AA batteries, and possibly some sort of sensors measuring UV exposure (???).

    It does appear the Monterra will have GLONASS reception capability. Does that translate to improved accuracy? In certain situations, it probably does help.

    And it runs Android with a 4" screen, presumably a capacitive one.

    I only wonder how much storage space this thing will have built in, and whether it will be able to handle more through memory cards. I also wonder what sort of app Garmin is going to package with it. For me, I think this is pretty important. I currently have an aging 3rd gen ipod touch that is starting to choke on certain apps that appear to be getting developed for more modern handsets with dual and quad core chipsets. What kind of processor will this Monterra have? It better have a quad core chip in it or it will be behind the hardware curve already.

    If this Garmin pans out and proves to be a quality product, I might purchase one to replace the iTouch for the things the iTouch is having trouble with, which basically includes everything except music. And if the GPS proves to be some kind of improvement with decent software on the front end, it should allow for a simpler transition from mapping the trails on the ground to producing web maps or print maps in the office.

    I have to admit, however, that the prospective price tag is tough to swallow. The most I've paid for a handheld GPS is about $250 or so, which I spent on an Oregon 450, and a GPSMap 76CSx.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by NateHawk View Post
    I only wonder how much storage space this thing will have built in, and whether it will be able to handle more through memory cards.
    The amazon page you linked to shows 8GB internal plus memory card addon, which based on current models, should be up to 32GB.

    I think this might be an interesting unit for people who are concerned about additional functionality, but I wonder about the all in one market for camping/recreation/survival - I mean, a GPS that doubles as a weather radio? Do you want to use your GPS batteries to check the weather? Do you want to use your weather radio batteries to check your location? If you know your location and checked the weather ahead of time are you even concerned about it? I don't know, because honestly those things don't matter to me.

    The only reason I would be interested in this unit would be if it significantly helped my life mapping trails or laying out trails by significantly improving the accuracy of either one, or just flat doing all the aggregation work for me.

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