• This topic has 47 replies, 33 voices, and was last updated 5 years ago by rhid.
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  • Sat nav for car. Garmin or TomTom?
  • Premier Icon john_drummer
    Free Member

    Sick of getting lost in towns I’m not familiar with, I’ve decided to get a satnav device for the car. I have a Garmin device for cycling, so should I stick with Garmin, or go for TomTom? I know other brands are available but these seem to have a monopoly

    Budget £130 max

    Premier Icon piemonster
    Free Member

    Smartphone plus Navmii (offline gps) or similar?

    Do you still have to pay for map updates with some car GPS?

    Premier Icon john_drummer
    Free Member

    Possibly but I was looking at those with free lifetime maps.

    My smartphone is pants. Can see the life draining out of it as it is, without using it for satnav. No, looking for a dedicated device

    Premier Icon tron
    Free Member

    You’d be tapped to buy a satnav now.

    Just buy a half decent phone, a brodit clip on mount and use Waze. Gets fantastic live traffic info and saves me masses of time for free.

    Tomtom do the best sat navs in my experience, but mine must be 7 or 8 years old now. Had colleagues who had Garmins and the navigation was very very poor.

    Premier Icon john_drummer
    Free Member

    Huddersfield is dreadful for the “you should have turned right at the last junction” signs* and I’m heading for York at the end of the week, can’t imagine a medieval walled city being too easy to navigate round.

    *just like the Autoroutes in France. You want to go to Nice? Should’ve taken that exit you just passed…

    Thanks tron, one vote for TomTom.
    I definitely do not want to go down the “phone as a satnav” route. Battery life is crap as is

    Premier Icon eruptron
    Free Member

    Garmin for me. Always used Garmin. Father in Law having to be the exception bought a Tom Tom despite all the family being familiar with Garmin.
    Had a look at the Tom Tom he bought it just didn’t feel as easy to use as the Garmin either on the device or the computer. Probably what I’m use to but which ever you choose just make sure you get lifetime mapping updates.
    Should get a good unit for far less than your budget.

    Premier Icon trail_rat
    Free Member

    “You’d be tapped to buy a satnav now.

    Just buy a half decent phone, “

    Unless you travel too or live somewhere where internet signal sucks.

    Got **** off waiting for it to get signal to calculate a route.

    My garmin nuvi has navigated me all over uk and europe with no hassles what so ever.

    Premier Icon piemonster
    Free Member

    Unless you travel too or live somewhere where internet signal sucks.

    You don’t need an internet signal. Just a GPS lock, there are several free Sat Nav apps that do this.

    The downside is that they often require a fair chunk of your phones memory.

    Premier Icon wallop
    Full Member

    My Garmin is crap. Chooses questionable routes and loves to switch itself off at really crucial moments.

    Premier Icon john_drummer
    Free Member

    2-1 to Garmin now.

    Did I mention I wasn’t interested in using a phone as a satnav? But that I want a dedicated unit?

    2-2 now, spectacular OG there 🙂

    Premier Icon piemonster
    Free Member

    Did I mention I wasn’t interested in using a phone as a satnav? But that I want a dedicated unit?

    Not yet, you need to say it three times whilst hopping on one leg for it to count.

    Premier Icon piemonster
    Free Member

    Anyway, Tom Tom would be my choice based on Sat Nav devices from 6 years ago. Still relevant maybe….

    Premier Icon allfankledup
    Full Member

    Garmin nuvi with lifetime free maps

    Purchased from argos a few years ago. Less likely to send you down inappropriate routes than the built in vw one in my experience…

    Premier Icon john_drummer
    Free Member

    Oh yeah, I forgot about that 🙄

    Premier Icon trail_rat
    Free Member

    “, there are several free Sat Nav apps that do this”

    So the programs free but you need to give up some of your expensive phone memory…..but either way ime ive not seen an app that works as reliably well as my garmin once you get into remote parts of scotland. At least my garmin knows the difference between a road and a farm teack.

    Premier Icon john_drummer
    Free Member

    I had a built-in one in my 9-3 a few years ago. DVD based, probably out of date when the car was built in 2007. It was great until I found myself on a new road somewhere near Wetherby. It seemed to think I was driving across a field ….

    Premier Icon sadmadalan
    Full Member

    We just been through this and got the Tom-Tom 5000. I have a Nokia Lumia with the Here Maps app which provides a Sat Nav, but the Tom-Tom is better.

    Premier Icon kimbers
    Full Member

    Got a Garmin ,its pretty good, free updates are good idea

    Definitely better than a phone, bigger, better anti glare

    Free star wars upgrades!

    Premier Icon PePPeR
    Full Member

    Another vote for Tom Tom, I will admit Garmins interface is nicer. But the actual routing software and things like showing the map so that when you come off motorways you can see where to go at the oncoming roundabout, which drove me mad when I tried a Garmin.

    Means I still far prefer my Tom Tom over the Garmin.

    Premier Icon johnj2000
    Free Member

    I tend to use Waze fro my phone more than the 2 sat navs we have. Love the accuracy of the real time updates and the way it finds really good alternative routes based on real info.

    Premier Icon granny_ring
    Full Member

    I bought a Garmin in the summer, the £180 one but with 20% off Halfords offer.
    Only used it twice and the traffic update came into play and saved some time.
    Not used a Tom Tom so can’t compare.

    Premier Icon Cougar
    Full Member

    When I bought a dedicated unit (some ‘decade’ ago) there was TomTom, and there was everything else.

    Really though, you should at least try a smartphone solution or two before dismissing it out of hand.

    Premier Icon pennine
    Free Member

    I have a TomTom you can borrow for a trial run John. It’s also got updated speed camera info too. Let me know.

    Premier Icon RustyNissanPrairie
    Full Member

    Don’t bother trying Windows/Nokia Here+ It’s crap for routing

    Premier Icon Harry_the_Spider
    Full Member

    I’ve tried the Smart Phone solution.

    As a result of my findings I’ll probably get myself a new Tom Tom.

    Premier Icon iolo
    Full Member

    I have the whole of Europe including the eastern bit tomtom on my iphone. Its great but one major problem.
    If someone calls just as you’re looking for which lane to go to in a city, or unsure of which juction to leave the motorway as there’s 3 very close together, or some other complicated bit of navigation and it transfers to the phone screen so the navigation pauses. Eastern Europe has bloody awful signage so you end up going the wrong way. Then you have no idea where to go. I will but a tomtom stand alone unit soon as the system is great when it’s left to navigate.

    Premier Icon SaxonRider
    Full Member

    Before Garmin wins any more favour, please consider the fact that I have had one for four years, and I can think of nothing in history that could suck worse. That thing has tried to get me to leave the M4 when departing London for Cardiff so many times, I think there is a conspiracy among satellites to get me to move to Twickenham or Chertsey.

    It got us lost more than once in Normandy, and has taken me straight through the middle of quiet residential areas of Bath, when I just wanted to get to Bradford on Avon. Even my wife, who is 10000000 times more patient than me, agrees that we should launch it off the back of the ferry on our next crossing to Dunkerque.

    Piece. Of.

    Premier Icon andyg1966
    Full Member

    Got a Garmin Nuvi with lifetime maps. Just works. Simple.

    You can plug it into your PC and manually add points of interest.

    Premier Icon aracer
    Free Member

    john_drummer wrote:

    I definitely do not want to go down the “phone as a satnav” route. Battery life is crap as is

    In which case, one of these:
    http://cpc.farnell.com/insixt/lms01a-2u-2a-ins-b/2-port-usb-car-charger-in-black/dp/TE07629
    and one of these:
    http://cpc.farnell.com/pro-signal/hk-us10-1/1m-micro-b-plug-to-a-plug-usb/dp/CS18567

    wrote:

    So the programs free but you need to give up some of your expensive phone memory…..

    ah, and one of these:
    http://cpc.farnell.com/sandisk/sdsqunc-016g-gn6ma/16gb-ultra-microsdhc-class-10/dp/MD00595

    Premier Icon sharkattack
    Free Member

    I’ve got a middle of the road Garmin from about 3 years ago. Been all over Europe with it and no complaints. Really useful for finding nearby stuff that you’d otherwise miss like shops or fuel or campsites.

    Fit and forget. Haven’t given it a thought until now really.

    I’d definitely consider a newer one if there’s been any developments. Using a phone on a bracket is a poor substitute.

    Premier Icon john_drummer
    Free Member

    did I mention I wasn’t interested … Oh yeah, I thought so.

    It’s not that I don’t appreciate the help & advice, but I have already eliminated smartphone as a satnav… I’m so hacked off with my smartphone I’m thinking of switching to the dumbest phone possible at my next renewal.. Phone calls? Check. Text messages? Check. Everything else? Nah

    Granville – thanks for the loan offer, I may take you up on that…

    Premier Icon nealglover
    Full Member

    down the “phone as a satnav” route. Battery life is crap as is

    Plug it in then. You need to plug in a satnav anyway so there is no difference.

    [/quote] … I’ve not found an app that works as reliably well as my garmin… [/quote]

    You’ve probably not tried the Garmin satnav app then ?

    Premier Icon Cougar
    Full Member

    did I mention I wasn’t interested … Oh yeah, I thought so.

    It’s not that I don’t appreciate the help & advice, but I have already eliminated smartphone as a satnav… I’m so hacked off with my smartphone I’m thinking of switching to the dumbest phone possible at my next renewal.

    Excellent, perfect device to then turn into a dedicated SatNav… (-:

    What is it, out of interest?

    Premier Icon Andy-W
    Free Member

    Waze is very good it even got me back from the French Alps last year when my old tom tom 700 didn’t know all the new roads

    this summer I got a tom tom 5100 to help me on a two week tour of France and Italy and its very good

    no updates to pay for for life and its got a built in sim card with free data

    very happy

    sorry just seen the £130 max ….mine was a bit more but very glad I paid a bit more than planned

    Premier Icon sharkattack
    Free Member

    Wow, people are really aggressively pushing the smart phones. It was ruled out in the op. What’s the problem? It’s like all your wives cheated on you with Tom Toms.

    Premier Icon john_drummer
    Free Member

    what model it is doesn’t matter, I’m ditching it in December, then flogging it to music magpie or something.

    Garmin or TomTom? TomTom seems to be marginally ahead. Mostly due to the lack of own goals…

    Premier Icon skids
    Free Member

    I prefer Garmin, with it clear purple line

    Premier Icon uponthedowns
    Free Member

    I think Garmin has better hardware. The one I had got satellite lock faster than the Tom Toms I’ve had however I sold it within a couple of weeks and went back to TomTom as the Garmin was amazingly frustrating to use. TomTom software is more intuitive and better at route selection and customising the route.

    Premier Icon kjcc25
    Free Member

    I’ve always had Tom Tom and been very pleased with it, however my latest vehicle came with a built in Garmin. Far easier to use than the Tom Tom but its route selection can be very poor. Trying it out on local roads it would not use a B road to get me home, it kept prioritizing A roads which if followed would result in an extra five miles on what was a 5.5 mile journey! My wife’s car also has Garmin and does the same thing. There is no way of changing priorities on it and so Garmin gets the thumbs down from me. It does always get you to your destination just not sure sometimes of its route selection.

    Premier Icon nickc
    Full Member

    Always had a Tom Tom, the interface is OK, gets to to where you need to go with little fuss. Sometimes it will send me down some teeny little country roads that are “probably” quicker, but it doesn’t understand the concept of tractors or slow old biddies.

    It’s the programming, of course (both my choices and its) overall very pleased with it.

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