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Thread: Map updates for modern Garmin GPS

  1. #1
    JWHITE518
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    Map updates for modern Garmin GPS

    I have a question for those with the Zumo, or any Garmin GPS with preloaded maps. What do you do when they come out with the next version of City Navigator? Is there a way to update the built-in maps?

    For context, I currently own a Streetpilot III, which only stores base maps. All detailed maps are stored on a Garmin memory module. I have to load the detailed maps for the area I'm traveling onto the memory stick for them to be available to the GPS unit. It seems that with the new units, you don't have to load maps into the GPS, only routes and waypoints.

  2. #2
    Chairman of the hoard wmubrown's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jwhite518 View Post
    I have a question for those with the Zumo, or any Garmin GPS with preloaded maps. What do you do when they come out with the next version of City Navigator? Is there a way to update the built-in maps?

    For context, I currently own a Streetpilot III, which only stores base maps. All detailed maps are stored on a Garmin memory module. I have to load the detailed maps for the area I'm traveling onto the memory stick for them to be available to the GPS unit. It seems that with the new units, you don't have to load maps into the GPS, only routes and waypoints.
    In previous models, you could not update the pre-loaded "background" maps. You could download City Navigator detail maps to a memory card though, and by purchasing City Navigator updates, "update" your GPS in that fashion.

    According to the Zumo manual, page 50: "Register your Zumo to receive notification of software AND MAP (my emphasis) updates." So there is obviously some mechanism to update it's maps. How it is done is not specified - web update, download a new City Navigator disk via USB (which means you will still have to purchase new versions of City Navigator), or what.
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    Rally Rat RGVILLA's Avatar
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    I have an IQ3600 hand held and recently updated to City Navigator North America v8. I paid $75 got a disc that I open and then download to a memory card. I can add any area of North American cities which includes detailed street address info. I transfer the GPS from bike to car and take it with me when I fly somwhere and rent a car. It is very handy

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    Seattle-area Rounder OfficerImpersonator's Avatar
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    This is another great example of why you should avoid GPS units that have all the map data preloaded - you can't update it.

    I use a Garmin GPSMAP 60C. My library of maps are on CD-ROMS. Depending on my intended use, I load the appropriate maps of the appropriate geographical region to my GPS from my computer. I can also use my computer to create waypoints and routes and then upload them to my GPS. After my trip, I can download actual route information and save it to my computer. I can print out paper maps either before or after the trip.

    Most relevantly for this topic, as map updates are released, I can purchase new CDs from Garmin and upload the most current information to my GPS.

    These are all things you can't do with a GPS with pre-loaded map information.
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    Addicted to curves azgman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dvandkq View Post
    This is another great example of why you should avoid GPS units that have all the map data preloaded - you can't update it.

    I use a Garmin GPSMAP 60C. My library of maps are on CD-ROMS. Depending on my intended use, I load the appropriate maps of the appropriate geographical region to my GPS from my computer. I can also use my computer to create waypoints and routes and then upload them to my GPS. After my trip, I can download actual route information and save it to my computer. I can print out paper maps either before or after the trip.

    Most relevantly for this topic, as map updates are released, I can purchase new CDs from Garmin and upload the most current information to my GPS.

    These are all things you can't do with a GPS with pre-loaded map information.

    I have to disagree with you. The pre-loaded base map is of no signifigance if you load in the detail maps for the entire US on top of it. Most of the new Garmins have more than enough memory capacity to do this, so you have detail for anyplace you might go with no maintenance effort. Upgrading to the detail maps in City Navigator V8 took all of about 1 hour, of which I needed to be present for 15 seconds...
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  6. #6
    JWHITE518
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    Quote Originally Posted by BMWPhreak View Post
    Upgrading to the detail maps in City Navigator V8 took all of about 1 hour, of which I needed to be present for 15 seconds...
    Which model GPS was this?

  7. #7
    Seattle-area Rounder OfficerImpersonator's Avatar
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    Who uses the pre-loaded base map? My pre-loaded map was useless as it didn't contain any topographical data, marine navigational data, or road map and routing data (I use my GPS for hiking, kayaking, climbing, mountain biking and in my other two vehicles).

    By using the CD-ROMs, I can load any combination of topographic maps, road maps, and/or marine charts I'll need on my journey or adventure. Why buy a GPS that only works on your motorcycle when you can get one that will work for any possible application?

    I do wish I had the newest version of the GPSMAP 60C - the 60CX. The 60CX has a slot for a SD card, allowing the user to store as many maps as the size of the SD card will allow.
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  8. #8
    SNOONE
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    My understanding is that when a system update happens you can download via Garmins Webupdater software. There already was an update which I was able to load

    Also I have already updated my mapsource data through the program (loaded the supplied Mapsource program on the PC). In the help menu there is a heading that says look for software update. As long as your mapsource program has been registered with Garmin you can get the updates

  9. #9
    Seattle-area Rounder OfficerImpersonator's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by snoone View Post
    My understanding is that when a system update happens you can download via Garmins Webupdater software. There already was an update which I was able to load

    Also I have already updated my mapsource data through the program (loaded the supplied Mapsource program on the PC). In the help menu there is a heading that says look for software update. As long as your mapsource program has been registered with Garmin you can get the updates
    I think we're talking about two different types of updates here. There are updates to maps that evolve as streets and highways are added to our infrastructure, and then there are software updates to both the MapSource software on your computer and "firmware" updates to the software on the GPS unit itself.

    Garmin will provide updates to the software for the computer and the GPS unit for free, but updates to the maps will cost you $$$.
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  10. #10
    SNOONE
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    So couldnt you update the mapsource on your computer and then upload from your computer to the unit replacing what is there?

  11. #11
    Seattle-area Rounder OfficerImpersonator's Avatar
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    Are we talking about updating the software on the GPS unit or are we talking about updating the maps stored in the GPS memory? You can certainly use the MapSource software to update the GPS unit's "operating system" software.

    Some of the maps I use on my GPS cannot be stored on the computer - you must put the CD-ROM in the computer for the MapSource software to access the map data and to upload new maps to the GPS unit. While this isn't the case for the street maps or marine navigational charts, it is the case for my topographical maps.
    Seattle, WA
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  12. #12
    Mudbug
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    Quote Originally Posted by jwhite518 View Post
    I have a question for those with the Zumo, or any Garmin GPS with preloaded maps. What do you do when they come out with the next version of City Navigator? Is there a way to update the built-in maps?

    It seems that with the new units, you don't have to load maps into the GPS, only routes and waypoints.
    When the next version of City Navigation becomes available and I get it, I install it on my computer then upload it to the unit (zumo, 2820) using the MapSource software upload icon.

    But, not all City Navigator versions are compatible with all units. Example, the 2610 uses City Navigator v8, the zumo and 2820 use City Navigator NT v8. If the NTv8 is installed on the computer, then only waypoints and routes can be uploaded to the 2610.

    Having City Navigator already loaded on the units saves the customer a couple of hours load time. The 2610 did not have the maps loaded. It took me over 2 hours to load them onto a 2 GB CompactFlash card I put into the unit. But I only did it once. No need to redo it.

  13. #13
    Addicted to curves azgman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jwhite518 View Post
    Which model GPS was this?
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  14. #14
    JWHITE518
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mudbug View Post
    But, not all City Navigator versions are compatible with all units. Example, the 2610 uses City Navigator v8, the zumo and 2820 use City Navigator NT v8. If the NTv8 is installed on the computer, then only waypoints and routes can be uploaded to the 2610.
    OK, so now I understand that there are two versions of City Nav, the regular one and the NT one. The version you use depends on which GPS you are updating. Are there any functional differences between the two versions?

  15. #15
    Mudbug
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    Quote Originally Posted by jwhite518 View Post
    OK, so now I understand that there are two versions of City Nav, the regular one and the NT one. The version you use depends on which GPS you are updating. Are there any functional differences between the two versions?
    The difference is the compression method used. The maps are the same in MapSource.

    However, the v8 on the 2610 and the NT v8 on the 2820 and zumo, display detail differently. And the NT v8 is used my units are display 3D. The 2610 is a 2D only display.

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