<font face="Comic Sans MS">I finally decided to bite the bullet and pick up a GPS unit. Ive been thinking and looking around and such for one for along while... At first I was looking at the Garmin GPS12, the GPSII, and the GPS IIIplus), and the Magellan 315, 320 and 330 (the mapping one)... After looking at all the different ones, looking some more, I finally settled on the Magellan MAP330. The thing stores 500 waypoints, and has 8mb that you can upload very detailed maps into. I have most of lower Michigan loaded into mine... Meaning that it's got every single street, rail road, river, even some ditches on there that all display if I want... You can zoom in and out, and pan across the map... It came complete with the cable to interface with the computer and their CD program with the maps... With the Garmin GPSIIIplus you get mapping also, but you have to buy the interface cable and the mapping program seperately... Procuring those features in the Garmin unit would tack another $110 or $120 onto the base price of $250... I paid $230 for the MAP330... Seems easy to use, and has a straight forward interface... Oh the other thing it came with is a mount so you can stick it to the windshield and position it so you can see it to help you navigate... Back lit screen and keys also, so you can see what goes on even in the dark... Eventually I shall write some more about it, after I've had it for a while and used it some more...
The other thing that swayed me to the Magellan map330, was the ability to upgrade the flash memory in it. It can be made to take advantage of the WAAS system... Here's a description: <blockquote><font size=1>In reply to:</font><hr>
WAAS, developed by the United States government, calculates the errors in the GPS signal at several monitoring stations around the country, then transmits error correction messages from geostationary satellites to GPS receivers. In addition to WAAS, two other satellite systems offer compatible correction signals, EGNOS (European Geostationary Navigation Overlay System) over Europe and MSAS (Multifunctional Transport Satellite-based Augmentation System) over Asia. The following resources are available for more information on WAAS and its implementation on Magellan products.
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Testing by THALES Navigation shows its newly released GPS receivers can obtain improved accuracy of less than three meters vertically and horizontally for 95% of the time the GPS unit receives the WAAS signal. However, the WAAS, EGNOS, and MSAS systems orbit low on the horizon, therefore, receiving the correction signals can be difficult if buildings, foliage, terrain, and other ground obstacles block the signal from view. Reception will improve as the U.S. government adds more satellites to the WAAS system. For more information about WAAS, visit the FAA website at http://gps.faa.gov/Programs/WAAS/waas.htm
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My May Column