Item # 855742
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Reviewed by 1 customer
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Comments about Garmin Oregon 600t GPS:
This review is mostly aimed at current Garmin Oregon (and similar Garmin unit) users who are wondering if the new 600-series units are worth the upgrade. In a nutshell: yes.
I have used a Garmin Oregon 450t for 2 years. It's a great little GPS but it has a few major drawbacks. First, the screen is basically illegible in daylight: it's simply far too dark. Second, the touchscreen just seems ancient and pathetic compared to modern smartphones and other touch devices like tablet computers. It takes a lot of pressure, reacts slowly, and still misinterprets many of your inputs. Just terrible. And perhaps the greatest offense of all was how easily the unit would interpret your touch of the screen as wanting to drop a pin on the map, which you could not cancel without it bringing you back to centered on your location. Otherwise the software was good, the Garmin topo maps are useful, and the software interface is reasonably intuitive.
So, in comes the new 600-series. It definitely fixed the bad parts of the old system, and generally improved on the good parts too. I don't have a ton of time on my new unit, so I will just focus on the basics. First off, the screen is much (MUCH) more visible in bright daylight. It is also far sharper and less pixelated than the old screen. Colors are saturated and bright.
The touch input is also vastly improved. It's not quite as snappy and responsive as your high-end smartphone, but it's close. Pinch-to-zoom, panning, and such all work pretty well. It no longer misinterprets every panning swipe as dropping a pin, and even when you do accidentally place a pin on the map (by tapping in one location), you can cancel it by tapping an 'x' by the pin's name. Finally! Getting through the menus is painless, and though things are somewhat rearranged, you will get used to the new layout pretty fast. The map redraw is also speedier and the menues react faster than on the old units. You can set the 'user button' (a second button below the power button on the unit's side) to turn the screen off and on (or many other user-set functions). This saves power when it's in your pocket and prevents accidental inputs. This way you don't have to lock the screen all the time. I did try it with gloves on, and the input was not very accurate or responsive. If you have some thin, form-fitting gloves you may have better luck, but if I want to do much with the unit I will be taking my gloves off.
The form factor has changed a little. The new unit has most of its face made from glass as opposed to a recessed, smaller, plastic-feeling screen on the old unit (the actual viewing areas are the same). The shapes are slightly different though the overall dimensions are largely unchanged.
The new unit costs more than my old 450t did and basically offers the same features. I thought technology was supposed to get cheaper over time, while still improving. Oh well. This is still a noticeable upgrade over the old Oregon and fixed my major gripes with those models.
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