GPS device advice

General cycling advice ( NOT technical ! )
Psamathe
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Re: GPS device advice

Postby Psamathe » 9 May 2017, 3:04pm

Bez wrote:Sorry. Wasn't that obvious, and if there was a way of making a phone work for several hundred miles of have been genuinely interested. In hindsight it seems unlikely, granted, but there are plenty of people on here go do those sorts of distances. I guess my Critical Thought Neuron must have been having a tea break.

Anyway, you can be satisfied in the fact that I look stupid and you don't.

405 miles is too specific when associated with 20%.

And I should add I probably "over-reacted" as in another thread somebody had deliberately mis-interpreted a point I had been making and accused me of not being a "rational thinker" (sort of thing I react badly to) ... yes, I did overreact, sorry.

Ian

Bez
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Re: GPS device advice

Postby Bez » 9 May 2017, 3:53pm

These things happen ;) *proffers half-full pack of chocolate digestives*

BTW I tend to think that if someone's done a 405 mile ride they might be unusually precious about the 5, but that's probably projection on my part ;)

david7591
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Re: GPS device advice

Postby david7591 » 9 May 2017, 6:47pm

This site, https://www.dcrainmaker.com/ , has lots of useful info and reviews

AndyJ
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Re: GPS device advice

Postby AndyJ » 13 May 2017, 1:38pm

david7591 wrote:This site, https://www.dcrainmaker.com/ , has lots of useful info and reviews


I'll second that recommendation; I've used the DCRainmaker site a lot in the past - it's a brilliant site.

Regarding getting a unit to last for a long time have you considered a backup battery? When I did LEJoG last year I had a Garmin Edge 1000 with me for navigation and it would last several hours each day with battery to spare. The one day I forgot to recharge it overnight (d'oh!) I connected it during the ride to my spare battery pack (which was in my handlebar bag) and it worked perfectly whilst charging at the same time. I've put a few step-by-step guides to using it on my site too which might be helpful; https://cyclelejog.com/routeplantools.html#garminimport.

The Garmin Edge 1000 was great for turn-by-turn navigation on the bike but I'm not sure it'd be that convenient for running! From personal experience I can recommend the Garmin Vivoactive HR watch which has inbuilt GPS (I use it for recording hikes - turn off the heart rate monitor and battery life is very impressive!).
My Land's End to John o'Groats experiences: https://www.cyclelejog.com

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WorldWideWilby
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Re: GPS device advice

Postby WorldWideWilby » 14 May 2017, 8:36am

I have used the etrex20 with turn by turn notifications, it was sometimes Laggy when I needed a quick response at a turn.
This was mainly due to having large gpx files and the device struggling to compute in time. Also I often would go off route because I would pass through a junction the wrong way because the etrex20 hadn't made up its mind in time. Then after a few pedal revolutions I would check the Garmin and it would have recalculated a new route for me.
So a longer way to continue back onto my preplanned route.
I resorted to using tracks only but need to keep an eye on the small screen. Then when needing to zoom in to see the turn the buttons were slow to respond.
Anyways when it broke due to my hamfistered control I just used the phone.
Now several phones later I am recommending the Samsung S5 or use an old phone as your gps.
The S5 is waterproof, can change the battery, and battery life is good.
I use a quad lock mount with the mount superglued to a backache. When it rains hard I use a plastic bag because the rain drops start controlling the phone. I use ridewithgps that does a screen popup on turns so the screen can stay off.
The power lasts for all club rides into late afternoon.
However I have a dynamo that gives me added charge.

I recently rode in New Zealand about 350kms per day and used a power pack that kept me charged up.

It's a composting toilet -> my SM-G901F using Tapatalk

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meic
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Re: GPS device advice

Postby meic » 14 May 2017, 9:06am

I am curious to know how you did that.
I am guessing that you had downloaded both of a track and a route and were following them simultaneously. The GPS can be sped up by unticking the mapping tiles that you dont need in that particular location.
I think that if you have a GPS which accepts .tcx files it doesnt need to calculate a route all the time as yours was doing and just has displays extra information at the turns on a track, which means no delays.

As somebody said previously the combination of a delay in its processing location data and the routing can often lead to you being misdirected while trying to follow tricky navigations through towns. It took me quite a while to realise this was what was going wrong. The same route could be followed quite successfully if you were walking instead of cycling.
Yma o Hyd

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Sweep
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Re: GPS device advice

Postby Sweep » 14 May 2017, 9:41am

Bez wrote:
[XAP]Bob wrote:For many applications the smartphone is actually a perfectly reasonably answer


I agree it is, although it has a few significant shortcomings (few are weatherproof, capacitive screens don't work when wet, mounting to the bars is generally not straightforward unless you're happy with a huge plastic bracket…). One of the key weaknesses for many people, though, is that most phones with most tracking apps will go for maybe six hours or so. I've stretched one out to 20 or so hours before with careful fettling, but a 400 mile ride on 20% of charge is a whole different league, hence my scepticism ;)


I think you are being polite Bez- those all sound like very serious indeed shortcomings to me.
Sweep

Bez
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Re: GPS device advice

Postby Bez » 14 May 2017, 3:38pm

Depends. If you're a fair-weather rider who doesn't ride more than 100km or so, they're not showstoppers. And even if you're not, they can largely be worked around (tidier mounts can be hacked, external batteries or dynamos can be used, software can be carefully chosen). In the past I've used a phone to navigate and record a 600, it was fine.

gloomyandy
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Re: GPS device advice

Postby gloomyandy » 14 May 2017, 4:27pm

None of the phones I've had are readable in bright sunlight. In contrast a Garmin edge is easy to read in bright light but not so good in low light conditions (unless you turn the backlight on, which uses more of the battery)! Can't win really. So is there a phone that is easy to read in strong light? Oh and the folks that use phones do you have the display on all the time? When not using it for navigation I would want to be able to see distance, and other stuff at a glance without having to press a button etc. I realize that navigation software can wake up the screen when needed, so I'm talking about more general use.

freeflow
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Re: GPS device advice

Postby freeflow » 14 May 2017, 4:49pm

If its very sunny you can turn on voice navigation and with some packages also get a voice report of your stats at a user defined intervals.

Bez
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Re: GPS device advice

Postby Bez » 14 May 2017, 6:55pm

It used to be possible to configure high-contrast map tiles using Cloudmade, which made a phone eminently usable in bright light, but sadly they pulled that service a few years ago. There are other ways, but they're a pain in the caboose.

nigelnightmare
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Re: GPS device advice

Postby nigelnightmare » 19 May 2017, 7:56pm

When using a smartphone as a GPS be careful as mine overheated, :o now it keeps telling me that the sim has been removed and to restart it.
Also sometimes loses all volume (incoming & outgoing). :twisted:

pq
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Re: GPS device advice

Postby pq » 19 May 2017, 11:39pm

I like my Garmin Edge Touring, especially since a firmware upgrade resolved a few glitches.

It's a good idea to look at ridewithgps which has info about how best to set up the popular GPS units (including this one) to get the best out of them

Phones I don't like for the reasons others have explained, and the etrex is rather dated. For me the Edge Touring has just the right features for someone who doesn't train/race and is pretty inexpensive.
One link to your website is enough. G

Psamathe
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Re: GPS device advice

Postby Psamathe » 20 May 2017, 9:49am

nigelnightmare wrote:When using a smartphone as a GPS be careful as mine overheated, :o now it keeps telling me that the sim has been removed and to restart it.
Also sometimes loses all volume (incoming & outgoing). :twisted:

I find that when using mapping apps the app does not actually consume much battery but it is the GPS device that does. I've been beta testing and verifying a mapping app recently and been running several mapping apps at the same time over rides and the battery used running multiple apps is the same as the battery used with just one meaning the bulk of power is the GPS not the apps.

So if your smartphone overheated I'd wonder if there was some other fault in the device that caused the problems (e.g. whatever caused the SIM remove/restart requests is a hardware failure that also caused the overheating) i.e. not caused by using the phone as a GPS but just an unrelated fault.

Ian

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Gattonero
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Re: GPS device advice

Postby Gattonero » 20 May 2017, 10:32am

Psamathe wrote:
nigelnightmare wrote:When using a smartphone as a GPS be careful as mine overheated, :o now it keeps telling me that the sim has been removed and to restart it.
Also sometimes loses all volume (incoming & outgoing). :twisted:

I find that when using mapping apps the app does not actually consume much battery but it is the GPS device that does. I've been beta testing and verifying a mapping app recently and been running several mapping apps at the same time over rides and the battery used running multiple apps is the same as the battery used with just one meaning the bulk of power is the GPS not the apps.

So if your smartphone overheated I'd wonder if there was some other fault in the device that caused the problems (e.g. whatever caused the SIM remove/restart requests is a hardware failure that also caused the overheating) i.e. not caused by using the phone as a GPS but just an unrelated fault.

Ian


That is the reason I like the ViewRanger app, it can be set ot minimize the use of the phone's GPS module thus greatly reducing the battery drain.
By using it about 6-7hrs during the day, with "email sync" switched off, switched off all the apps that would use mobile data and all the auto-updates and so on, I can easily get 2 days from a Samsung Galaxy Xcover3
It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best,
since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them.
Thus you remember them as they actually are...


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