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Frustrating First Morning With A New 710
May 8, 2011
4:16 am
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phild31
Nashua, New Hampshire USA
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I don't know what to tell you about the compass, with my 710 I just wave it in a figure eight with-out going to the calibration page and it's calibrated. Sometimes when I change from Vehicle profile to Geocaching profile it needs calibration, I just wave it around and it's set. Otherwise it stays calibrated until I shut it off.

For the field notes, don't use Vantage Point, go to GC.com to upload your field notes straight from the 710 before you do anything with VP.
I've had zero problems with the field notes file, I think because I don't use Vantage Point.
I usually send field notes from my iPhone in the field but when there's no 3g signal I use the 710 to GC.com for field notes.

VP has been a pain for me so I don't use it except for saving tracks.
I load geocaches to the 710 with GSAK.

Magellan is working on a better keyboard, this one is awkward but I can live with it for a while longer. I don't write a log until I'm on the computer anyway.

When in trouble or in doubt, run in circles, scream and shout

May 8, 2011
3:03 am
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michaeln
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OK, day two with the 710. There are two dealbreakers with this thing for me.

One is the compass. I must have calibrated that compass 30 times in five hours. Sometimes I would do the cal and it would succeed and then no more than a couple hundred feet later it was out of calibration again. And when the compass is out of calibration you can't use it, it simply doesn't work at all. With my Garmin units doing the calibration would usually last until I had to change the batteries, and even if it wasn't in calibration it still worked.

The other is that keyboard thing. Whatever were they smoking when they thought THAT was a good idea? Look at the Apple iPhone or iPod Touch for the way to do a keyboard on a handheld device.

There are many other things I am discovering about this thing that bother me too, among which is the missing newlogs.txt or logs.txt file. I found five caches this afternoon and marked them all, and VP tried to upload them, but they didn't show up on gc and when I checked with windows explorer they were gone.

So, I hope that Magellan is on top of this stuff and fixes it in a firmware release VERY soon, because I won't keep this 710 if it's going to act like this.

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San Francisco, CA

May 7, 2011
8:03 am
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ShortcutHicksy
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Michael,

I normally use Track Up and have found recalibrating the compass fixes the spinning. Next time it occurs I will change to Course Up and see if that rectifies the bouncing. Will report back.

Graham.

May 7, 2011
6:33 am
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michaeln
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ShortcutHicksy wrote:

I do believe the unit was not calibrated.

I believe you are incorrect.

As I posted above, I calibrated it twice, the first time it failed, the second time it claimed success. Besides, my further experiments as posted above show me it has nothing to do with compass calibration, and everything to do with "track up" when the unit is not moving and you are getting inconsistent position due to tall buildings creating "concrete canyons".

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May 7, 2011
6:28 am
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ShortcutHicksy
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Hi Michael,

This bouncing around as I like to call it happens when the compass in not calibrated. You can not rely on the Compass Status icon, it will indicate the campass is calibrated when it is not. However I have mainly observed the problem under low battery voltage conditions. With rechargeable battery it can happen quite quickly and before you see low battery indication on the Battery Life icon.

You indicated you were using Lithiums so they should be OK but I do believe the unit was not calibrated.

Graham.

May 7, 2011
5:42 am
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David
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I have always used Track Up on both my 610 & 710 and never seen this problem before Thursday and I wasn't close to the cache. Actually I was over a mile away from the cache, however, I was sitting still and I sat there and watched the map spin for over 2 minutes before I guessed at the direction of the cache and took off. Normally I would have had my GPSrs with me, however, I took out to grab an FTF for a cache that is dedicated to one of my friends and only grabbed the 710 and to be honest, I would have grabbed another GPS at that moment! It was frustrastring. So, I will be taking all of this info and forward it to Maggie and hopefully we can figure this out and get it fixed soon!!!

David


 

 

 

May 7, 2011
4:04 am
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phild31
Nashua, New Hampshire USA
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I found that course up is easier for me to use so I haven't tried track up for quite a while but what you said about track up and poor signal makes sense.

I have noticed that the different manufacturers don't use the same nomenclature for similar functions so it sometimes can be confusing going from one to another.

The longest my 710 ever took to calculate a route was maybe 15 - 20 seconds and that was a 300+ mile route to northern Maine staying off highways.
I've only used the route in Vehicle or Bicycle mode, never in Hiking or Pedestrian though.

When in trouble or in doubt, run in circles, scream and shout

May 7, 2011
3:24 am
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michaeln
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I have been playing around with it some more, and it seems to be related to having it in "track up" mode when you are either not moving or moving very slowly. Since there is no track line being laid down, it doesn't know what is "up", so it just randomly rotates.

I was sitting here in the house (good sat lock) and selected an address just down the street and told it GO. It took about a minute to calculate the route (???? it's a straight line only about a block long, why should that take so long?), then started rotating. Both the compass and the map were rotating.

I changed it to "course up" and it stabilized immediately. Same with "north up".

I think if you are using a Garmin unit in "track up" it must use the previously laid down track to determine "up", because none of my Garmins ever did this. But the 710, if it is stationary but surrounded by tall buildings so its own location seems to jump around keeps trying to decide what the track is, and keeps on trying a new "up".

Perhaps they need to program in some kind of hysteresis so it won't do this when it's in "track up" and stationary or moving very slowly when perhaps the signal is not that stable.

Dunno, just thinking out loud.

---
San Francisco, CA

May 7, 2011
1:57 am
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michaeln
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Yes, it had the new lithiums that came with it in it and the battery charge indicator was showing a full green battery (even after I got back home).

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San Francisco, CA

May 7, 2011
1:55 am
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michaeln
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Yes, I calibrated the compass. I did it twice, the first time it said it failed and the second time it said the calibration was successful.

I had it set for track up, but was careful to hold it still, and it still rotated like crazy, both on the map and compass screens.

When it is NOT in geocaching mode, the compass and the map behave normally, without the spinning. The compass "N" is aligned with where I know North to be and it is steady. The map stays steady too.

IIRC, the spinning started when I had approached within a certain distance in pedestrian "turn by turn" mode and it said "pedestrian mode is ending, switch to point to point mode?" or words to that effect. It apparently went into hiking mode, and that was where it flipped out and started spinning. It didn't stop rotating until I cancelled the geocaching hunt and noticed it was in hiking mode, and I set it back to pedestrian mode.

Pretty sure it has something to do with hiking mode.

The thing also got stuck for five minutes trying to calculate a route to a destination that was all of 1/2 mile away, and the calculation hang even persisted through a power cycle. It was unresponsive to button pushes too while this was going on. I finally removed the batteries to stop it.

Speaking of power cycling, the unit rebooted itself "to improve performance" FIVE TIMES in 3 hours, and each time I had to wait through the 45 second restart.

So far, I am not impressed with this thing, but I will fool with it for a couple weeks before I decide whether or not to send it back.

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San Francisco, CA

May 7, 2011
1:51 am
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David
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michaeln,

I had the same problem yesturday with my 710 and this is the first time I've ever seen this and yes the compass was calibrated. I know what you mean, I got so dizzy watching the thing spin that I almost fell off of the hill I was standing on. However, what I did notice was they my battery indicator was reading low so I changed the batteries and never say the issue again. However, I would really like to know - did you have new batteries in yours? If so, I'll forward your post to Magellan, because like I said, I've never seen this before and I've been using the new eX-line of GPSrs since before their release. However, I will say that once you get used to these units you're going to love them and I'm sure if there is a problem Magellan will fix this quickly.

David


 

 

 

May 7, 2011
1:47 am
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Charles
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Did you calibrate the compass?

My understanding is that there is an electronic compass but directions are also determined using the GPS position. The settings allow the user to specify the speed above which the GPS is used. Presumably, the GPS compass is always used if the electronic compass is not calibrated.

At very slow speeds or when standing still, the forward movement will be less than the accuracy of the reading, so that the calculated direction from the GPS compass will jump around, just as the track recorded by the GPS is scattered around the actual location when the unit is not moving. If the electronic compass is calibrated, the direction does not change when you stop because the calculated position is not used.

May 7, 2011
1:40 am
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warfieldm
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Makes me disoriented when it does that too. But I've only had it do that when the compass needs to be calibrated.

May 7, 2011
1:39 am
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phild31
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First, this may sound like a stupid question but do you have the backlight turned on? Set it at the brightest level and it should be easy to see in sunlight.

Is the compass turned on and does it need to be calibrated?
The top left on the screen the little compass icon will be red if it needs to be calibrated.

If you set map options to north up the arrow will rotate instead of the map.
I always have it set for course up but I've never seen the map rotating constantly. It will move a little but not very much.

Are you in geocaching profile or vehicle profile.
You will have to set the settings in the different profiles.

There is a bit of a learning curve but a little patience checking out the options for settings will go a long way.

When in trouble or in doubt, run in circles, scream and shout

May 6, 2011
11:19 pm
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michaeln
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Well, I received my new 710 from Amazon this morning. First thing, I installed the latest firmware update (4.83), then I went out to do some geocaching in downtown San Francisco.

My first impressions of the 710 are not really wonderful. The display is even harder for me to read in sunlight than the Garmin Oregon 450 I sent back for a refund. I always wear polarized sunglasses when I am outside, and with the Oregon the colors of the display stayed the same whether I was wearing the sunglasses or not. With the 710, everything is in shades of gold through the glasses. I'm not pleased about that, but I can live with it if I can make some of the other issues go away.

The worst one for me is that when I get close to a cache and it is zoomed in on the map display, the map rotates continuously in a very erratic fashion. It does this on the compass display too, it simply never stops rotating. It is so disconcerting that it almost makes me dizzy to look at it, and makes it impossible for me to even see where a cache is in relation to a particular intersection.

I must be doing something wrong, but I sure don't know what. None of my past Garmin units have ever behaved this way. I got so frustrated with it that I finally just turned it off and aborted the day's geocaching and came on home.

Anyone have an idea what is causing this and what I can do to cure it? If I can't fix this PDQ it's going back to Amazon.

Thanks!

Michael

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San Francisco, CA

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