Which GPS should I buy? - BMW Luxury Touring Community
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post #1 of 9 Old Jul 11th, 2007, 12:58 am Thread Starter
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Join Date: May 2007
Location: Jurupa Valley, CA, USA
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Which GPS should I buy?

I'm such a newbie that I don't even own a bike yet.... but YET is the important word there. I expect to have one very soon.

I hope this hasn't been asked yet (probably has - I just havent seen it) but which GPS unit is the best? I know, I'll get several different answers but that will at least help me in my search. What features do I want to make sure I have in a GPS?

I want to buy a GPS soon to use in my work truck so I thought I'd plan ahead and get one that will work on the bike too.

BTW, I'm deciding between a k1200gt or a r1200rt.

Thanks for your help!
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post #2 of 9 Old Jul 11th, 2007, 7:11 am
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Zumo 550

I just installed the Garmin Zumo 550. It is designed for a motorcycle but comes with the mounts and wiring to use it in the car as well as on the bike. It is water proof which is handy if you are going to use it on a bike.
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post #3 of 9 Old Jul 11th, 2007, 12:24 pm
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My SP2820 fills the bill perfectly for me and fits the factory nav prep (for a 1200LT - should fit yours if ordered with your new scoot, too.)

A lot of guys are using various Nuvi and Zumo (as noted) models. You can find factory certified Nuvi 350 and 360 between 300 and 400USD (try eCost, for example.) These models aren't waterproof, but those who go this route say they put them in their tank bags or pocket when it starts raining.
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post #4 of 9 Old Aug 2nd, 2007, 5:17 am
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Location: Adelaide, South Australia, Australia
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Just about to instal a Garmin Nuvi 660. Superb!

Kindest regards to all

Paul Harrington
E: [email protected]

1999 K1200LT Champagne "Bismarck"
1983 base K100 "Bavarian Belle"
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post #5 of 9 Old Aug 2nd, 2007, 7:07 am
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I am very happy with the Zumo 550. One big plus is its battery. Let's me take it into a restaurant and map the next leg of a trip. Other guys have to lean over their bikes, in the sun/rain. It costs a bit, but it's worth it to me.
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post #6 of 9 Old Aug 2nd, 2007, 8:07 am
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I have to agree with PainlessBob. I have the Nav III and the lack of a battery is my biggest beef with it.

06 RT Granite Gray
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post #7 of 9 Old Aug 2nd, 2007, 9:21 am
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I have the Zumo 450, not wanting all the distractions of verbal output. Just completed a 2700 mile tour and am sold on the zumo. This was not my first GPS. Have many miles on a Garmin III+ , 8 years. Used on my bike, truck, and snowmobile. I wanted an upgrade. The larger color screen, the touch screen, the 3D mapping, the route mapping, the info. for lodging or gas or food, all have proved well worth it to me. As others has said the internal battery is a plus (no pun intended). Can't wait to try it on the sled this winter. It has an off road mode. I mounted it to the tank bag. Also has a great web site. www.zumoforums.com for all kinds of information, and help if needed.
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post #8 of 9 Old Aug 5th, 2007, 11:21 pm
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Another GPS consideration is the Garmin 378. After installing the GX-30 XM module and paying a substantial monthly bill to XM Radio, I receive not only tunes but relatively real time weather displayed superimposed on the road maps. That feature has kept me out of hail more than once in Colorado. The internal battery allows one to carry it inside and preprogram the next leg. One must also remember to place the unit into road mode versus nautical cause the navigation gets weird asking for set and drift.

The only short coming is that it lacks Bluetooth. There is a small three conductor female socket that is audio out (for most headphones or or cable to plug into a central system like on my GoldWing).

I am hoping to figure a way to interface this system into a R1200RT audio system and create jacks for headphones in my helmet. I have seen the J&M handle bar CB interface (I have it on three H-Ds) and it works, but is not my preferred choice, if I get another one.
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post #9 of 9 Old Aug 9th, 2007, 11:11 pm
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Location: Waterloo, Ontario, Canada
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I just picked up a Mio P550, which is a GPS and a pocket PC all in one. Very compact, nice screen, and has enough GPS features to keep me happy, although the guys that have been using Garmin units might find it too basic. However, it is also a PDA, has wi-fi for connecting to the internet if you find a hot spot, and bluetooth for syncing to your computer. Unfortunately, the bluetooth will not pair to my Scala headset, so I am going to wire an aux input to the radio and run the audio from the GPS into it. It also has Windows Media Player installed, which means I can use it as an mp3 player too. Plus, it is battery powered for use off the bike, and will easily fit into a shirt pocket! My biggest challenge will be to wire the bike for the audio, and also a power feed, as it uses a USB connection for external power, which is 5 volts. It comes with a cigarette lighter adapter, so I need to figure out a way to make that work. However, I managed to get it for onlt $250.00, so it's worth a little trouble to make it work.

2005 K1200LT
1980 Kaw KZ1300
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