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Old 05-15-2016, 07:04 PM   #1
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Hand Held GPS Chart Plotter?

Will probably be moving my new used 38' from Milwaukee to Detroit soon. Since it doesn't have any chart plotter or stand-alone GPS unit I have been researching the Garmin Montana 610 marine package at thegpsstore.com. The screen is 4" & has turn by turn navigation. I'm hoping someone has first hand knowledge on it.
I will end up buying a 10" next season when I learn more. Now I want a hand held that will work & be a backup when I get a larger unit later. Thank you.
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Old 05-15-2016, 08:50 PM   #2
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Interesting. I had never heard of the Montana 610 with a marine package. I would be challenged with the 4" display. If you have a cellular iPad, you can get the Garmin Blue Charts for the iPad for much cheaper than the Montana 610 but your boat would need a 12v lighter outlet or an inverter to keep the iPad on while your are cruising. $600 for he Montana 610 marine package seems rather pricey. If I were going to put that much money into it, I would probably throw in a little more and get a Garmin 7" echoMap or something of that nature.

Let us know how works out.
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Old 05-15-2016, 11:14 PM   #3
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I will look into the 7" by Garmin. I planned on using a larger chart plotter when I learn more in the next few months & buy one. The plan for the Montana 610 was to use in a week or 2 when needed & use as backup with larger unit & use on my dingy. Thanks and take care.
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Old 05-15-2016, 11:29 PM   #4
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Get a free or cheap tablet and use the Navionics/Garmin/Other app for tablet and phone. This way you'll have redundancy and a display you can see from the helm. Save your money for the permanent system.
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Old 05-16-2016, 07:27 AM   #5
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I needed a GPS back up in a hurry and bought one of those from West Marine as it was discounted. This unit was set up marine, but I really think they're for hiking.

There's not much good I'll say about it. I have Mariner MX on my android phone and will take that over this Garmin model any day. I wanted a back up for my first gulf crossing, and didn't think I'd be able to use my cell phone for back up GPS, so I purchased the 610 because it was cheap. I have all Garmin products on my boat, and love them, but I don't like the hand held 610 and would tell anyone who's looking to purchase it for marine to look at something else. I use the 610 on my dinghy and have it mounted on the console, but again, I prefer my phone.

I guess the GPS receiver in a cell phone is different than how the phone gets cell service, as I've never lost GPS on my cell phone plotter app, and use it accurately 50 or 60 miles off shore.

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Old 05-16-2016, 08:25 AM   #6
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Thanks for first hand input on the 610. That's the benefit of this forum. I will heed the advice given & dodge a $600.00 bullet.Now to check out alternatives mentioned. Thank you for your help.
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Old 05-16-2016, 09:00 AM   #7
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ipad with GPS (need cell feature just dont need to activate it), waterproof case, seasucker mount it anywhere and good to go.
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Old 05-16-2016, 10:14 AM   #8
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We use A Magellan Meridian hand held GPS which is long discontinued , but still around new for under $200.

The 12V power cord saves in AA batts on board.
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Old 05-16-2016, 01:09 PM   #9
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Unfamiliar with ipads.when you say, "you need cell feature, just don't need to activate it." Don't understand. I didn't know ipads could be used as cell phones.
Could I do this on a non-ipad tablet?
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Old 05-16-2016, 01:29 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RickyB View Post
Unfamiliar with ipads.when you say, "you need cell feature, just don't need to activate it." Don't understand. I didn't know ipads could be used as cell phones.
Could I do this on a non-ipad tablet?
iPads can be purchased either as a cellular plus wifi model or a wifi only model. The cellular models are about $100-150 more but have built in GPS that isn't dependent on cellular connectivity. So what he is saying is you need the iPads with cellular built in but you don't have to sign up for service with AT&T or Verizon and the like.

Yes, you could do it with a non iPad tablet but you will need to be sure it is a GPS model before you buy it. Some of them charge you for maps also but you will have to pay for marine maps anyway (even with an iPad) if you use Garmin Blue Charts or Navionics.
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Old 05-16-2016, 04:09 PM   #11
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Thanks. Now I know a lot more than an hour ago. I'm slowly moving into the 21st century.
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Old 05-17-2016, 08:34 AM   #12
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Could I do this on a non-ipad tablet?

Yes. Most Android tablets include a built-in GPS sensor, although that's a feature to confirm when shopping on a specific unit.

Plan2Nav (C-Map vector charts) and MXMariner (NOAA raster charts) are both decent apps that run on Android tablets. Lots of other apps to chose from...

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