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post #1 of 17 Old Mar 22nd, 2013, 4:41 pm Thread Starter
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Bought latest BMW GPS but screen is N/G

Bought the latest version of BMW GPS at my dealer. Used it today for first time.

Under sunny or heavily overcast skies, the screen is virtually UNREADABLE. There is a very strong glare across the entire screen that renders the display unreadable. Polarized sun glasses did not help. Moving off axis has no effect.

I am sorely disappointed in Garmin who allegedly is the premier maker of these GPS units. After all these years, they should have developed a screen that is easily readable especially knowing it is going to be used outdoors. For $800., it unfortunately delivers only uniform glare during daylight hours. Struggling to read anything on the screen while riding is not safe. What was BMW thinking when they marketed this poorly designed GPS?
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post #2 of 17 Old Mar 22nd, 2013, 5:01 pm
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Re: Bought latest BMW GPS but screen is N/G

An anti-glare screen protector will help quite a bit. It's a common problem. You probably want some sort of screen protection on anyway, as grit on your gloves will scratch the GPS screen. Better to scratch a replaceable protector than the GPS' screen.

Tom

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post #3 of 17 Old Mar 22nd, 2013, 5:07 pm
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Re: Bought latest BMW GPS but screen is N/G

Quote:
Originally Posted by skytop
Bought the latest version of BMW GPS at my dealer. Used it today for first time.

Under sunny or heavily overcast skies, the screen is virtually UNREADABLE. There is a very strong glare across the entire screen that renders the display unreadable. Polarized sun glasses did not help. Moving off axis has no effect.

I am sorely disappointed in Garmin who allegedly is the premier maker of these GPS units. After all these years, they should have developed a screen that is easily readable especially knowing it is going to be used outdoors. For $800., it unfortunately delivers only uniform glare during daylight hours. Struggling to read anything on the screen while riding is not safe. What was BMW thinking when they marketed this poorly designed GPS?
What bike? Where is it mounted? Do you have the brightness turned up all the way?

I put some anti-glare film on mine that helped me. But I've never had anything like the trouble you're describing...it washes out when the sun is directly at my back and at enough of an angle that my helmet doesn't cast a shadow.

Some of the guys have found that one of the contributors is reflection back off your helmet or jacket.
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post #4 of 17 Old Mar 22nd, 2013, 5:18 pm
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Re: Bought latest BMW GPS but screen is N/G

Which one did you get the 660 or the 350?

John Baker

2005 BMW K1200LT
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post #5 of 17 Old Mar 22nd, 2013, 6:05 pm
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Re: Bought latest BMW GPS but screen is N/G

Quote:
Originally Posted by johnbaker15
Which one did you get the 660 or the 350?
The BMW Navigator IV is 660-based.
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post #6 of 17 Old Mar 22nd, 2013, 7:25 pm
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Re: Bought latest BMW GPS but screen is N/G

When I wear my day glow vest all I can see is my vest. I had to really play with the viewing angle on my 660. It just needs a sun shade, time to find some x-ray film and make one.

John
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post #7 of 17 Old Mar 22nd, 2013, 10:07 pm Thread Starter
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Re: Bought latest BMW GPS but screen is N/G

Guys.... thanks kindly for the suggestions.
First, I will immediately look into a screen protector that will hopefully reduce glare. That is a really good suggestion.

Next, since the dealer stated there was no brightness or contrast control, I did not look for any. I will get the manual out and look around for any possible controls to that effect.

Hopefully, the screen protector will also reduce that dreadful glare problem.

Thanks to all for the assistance!
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post #8 of 17 Old Mar 22nd, 2013, 10:12 pm
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Re: Bought latest BMW GPS but screen is N/G

On the 660, and it should be the same on the Nav IV, if you hold the power button down for a second or so you will bring up a screen that allows you to adjust the master volume and screen brightness.

It's not the only place where you can adjust these, but it is a shortcut.

edit: Meh, I see you have the K16. I have no idea if you can even reach the power button. The menu tree to the screen brightness is Tools>Settings>Display>Brightness

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post #9 of 17 Old Mar 23rd, 2013, 5:57 am
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Re: Bought latest BMW GPS but screen is N/G

Quote:
Originally Posted by 12R12RT
On the 660, and it should be the same on the Nav IV, if you hold the power button down for a second or so you will bring up a screen that allows you to adjust the master volume and screen brightness.

It's not the only place where you can adjust these, but it is a shortcut.

edit: Meh, I see you have the K16. I have no idea if you can even reach the power button. The menu tree to the screen brightness is Tools>Settings>Display>Brightness

Tom
Does skytop have a 1600? I don't see that information. That's why I asked the question...as when the Nav is in its cradle on the 1600 the bike handles the screen brightness automatically. Also, the mounting position in the 1600 built-in cradle is more problematic for shorter riders due to the slightly upward-tilted position. Some have used RAM or other mounts and relocated it down to the handlebars. I personally like it up where it is, as it gives a good view without your eyes having to leave the road.

If it's not on a 1600, or if you are not using the built-in cradle, one of the little hoodie sun shades might help; here's one of many out there:
http://glarestomper.com/

Edit: OK, skytop does have a K1600...I see in another thread (which I replied to but didn't snap). So no brightness adjustment...and no hoodie. I benefited from the anti-glare film; others have felt that it made it worse. I think the taller you are in the saddle, the better it works. They're cheap, so worth a try.

Last edited by JimE; Mar 23rd, 2013 at 6:03 am.
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post #10 of 17 Old Mar 23rd, 2013, 10:21 am
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Re: Bought latest BMW GPS but screen is N/G

No manual brightness adjustment? Well, BMW over-thought that one!

Tom

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post #11 of 17 Old Mar 23rd, 2013, 10:48 am
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Re: Bought latest BMW GPS but screen is N/G

Quote:
Originally Posted by jzeiler
When I wear my day glow vest all I can see is my vest. I had to really play with the viewing angle on my 660. It just needs a sun shade, time to find some x-ray film and make one.
I've noticed the exact same thing now that I've begun wearing a hi-vis vest.

Chris Ehlbeck
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post #12 of 17 Old Mar 23rd, 2013, 10:57 am
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Re: Bought latest BMW GPS but screen is N/G

Quote:
Originally Posted by 12R12RT
No manual brightness adjustment? Well, BMW over-thought that one!

Tom
Maybe so, but it works great.
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post #13 of 17 Old Mar 23rd, 2013, 11:21 am
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Re: Bought latest BMW GPS but screen is N/G

So I am about to pop for a Zumo and leaving behind a Garmin 376c - one major concern is
screen brightness and angle adjustment to avoid the dreaded sun glare. When I test rode a
K1600GTL for the entire test ride I could not see the GPS.

So in looking at Garmin site they have this banner . . .





So is the 350 any different than the 660 or 665!!

Does anyone have 350LM experience??

I would appear that the 660 or 665 would have an easier time of putting a Visor on the unit

Dan Finazzo
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post #14 of 17 Old Mar 25th, 2013, 12:14 am
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Re: Bought latest BMW GPS but screen is N/G

From what I remember the 350 is very different from the 600 series units.

I was considering getting a 350 to replace the 665LM I have sitting in it;s box. But I could not find any user reports. I figured that was because the 350 is priced higher than the 665LM.

I've put a few thousand miles on a 665 and not had a problem reading the display. But mine was mounted on a shelf over the dash-board gauges.

I bought a refurbished auto unit last Dec and have been using that for now (not much rain here in Tucson)--haven't had a problem reading that display either.

Right now I'm leaning towards buying auto units, and putting them in waterproof cases. If I chew up one unit a year for a few years, someone might come up with a unit actually designed for mc use--ever look for the button that finds the route with the best twisties? Whenever I see the statement designed by mc riders for use on a mc, I chuckle and wonder what type of bikes they ride where the same route selection for autos works for their riding style?

I waiting for the back-up camera to arrive, and waiting for the display.
here again the displays are so cheap, I figure I can chew up one a year and still be ahead in terms of safety.

Bob

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post #15 of 17 Old Mar 25th, 2013, 6:06 am
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Re: Bought latest BMW GPS but screen is N/G

Quote:
Originally Posted by dfinazzo
So is the 350 any different than the 660 or 665!!

Does anyone have 350LM experience??

I would appear that the 660 or 665 would have an easier time of putting a Visor on the unit
I don't own either one but do know someone with the 350 that upgraded from the 650. For him the biggest difference was faster recalculating after going off route and apparently it does not give the audio prompt "recalculating". It also won't sync with his phone (I don't know if it just had trouble with iPhone 5 or just doesn't do phones) and does not have a music player.

Gerhard
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post #16 of 17 Old Mar 25th, 2013, 6:15 am
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Re: Bought latest BMW GPS but screen is N/G

You are not alone...

I've got the 660 in my K1600 GTL console and it is useless most of the time for me, except for the audio. I would NOT suggest it for anyone. Garmin and BMW should be ashamed to have put this much research and money into the design. I love the idea, but not the application.

I spend a lot of time, it seems with the sun behind me (that's a good thing) and it washes out the screen. Relocation the GPS, for me, is the only solution, and I haven't done that yet.

Anti glare covers made no difference.

Dano
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02 K1200 LT (gone but not forgotten)
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post #17 of 17 Old Mar 28th, 2013, 4:31 am Thread Starter
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Navigator IV problem finally solved

Navigator IV problem finally solved. I returned it to the dealer.
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