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Normal Topic Should I buy a handheld GPS or will the Fenix 6 watch do the same and more? (Read 2367 times)
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Should I buy a handheld GPS or will the Fenix 6 watch do the same and more?
May 10th, 2020 at 9:49am
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Interested to hear what people have to say here, I am about to purchase my first GPS but I am torn between buying a handheld GPS "Garmin 64SX" or going for the "Fenix 6". I see a lot of people are now using their phones with topo and I have just started trying this. The idea with the Fenix is I can also use it to track fitness but still use it as a GPS along side my phone. Not concerned about price at this stage as I know that would determine a lot of your minds, more interested in usability and reliability. My eyesight is still good so looking at a small screen is not too much of an issue yet.
  
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Re: Should I buy a handheld GPS or will the Fenix 6 watch do the same and more?
Reply #1 - May 10th, 2020 at 5:51pm
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No matter what you buy also buy a map and compass and learn how to use it. Once the battery runs out a GPS is just a plastic object.
  

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Re: Should I buy a handheld GPS or will the Fenix 6 watch do the same and more?
Reply #2 - May 10th, 2020 at 6:19pm
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I wouldn't have thought a map as well, just a compass. Then if you get lost you should have a bearing to head and just keep walking that direction.

More of a question than a statement.

I just know I always know I need to go north or southwest.  Or up or down. But I use phone to navigate.

I have been utterly lost before when carrying nothing, I could have gone in any direction and it could have been the right one. Knew the road ran east to west, if only I had a compass.

That is real scary.
  
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Re: Should I buy a handheld GPS or will the Fenix 6 watch do the same and more?
Reply #3 - May 10th, 2020 at 6:21pm
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Disclaimer: Trust Radar more than me.
  
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Re: Should I buy a handheld GPS or will the Fenix 6 watch do the same and more?
Reply #4 - May 10th, 2020 at 6:42pm
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Even a compass is not infallible. We used to use a compass to find our way across a flat terrace of native bush in the dark on our way back to camp, but found that the barrel on our rifle was magnetic and that the compass would try and point at the rifle.

We used to have a gps of sorts with us as well, but we only use the gps to show us exactly where we are, not to navigate.
  
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Re: Should I buy a handheld GPS or will the Fenix 6 watch do the same and more?
Reply #5 - May 10th, 2020 at 8:07pm
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Radar wrote on May 10th, 2020 at 5:51pm:
No matter what you buy also buy a map and compass and learn how to use it. Once the battery runs out a GPS is just a plastic object.


This Smiley
Years ago (way before GPS was a word) I spent 6 hours in the fog on the tops of the Ruahines.  With a bunch of guys who had never been there before. With just a map, compass, and counting our paces. There were two turnoffs along the main range we had to avoid. You can imagine our relief when the fog lifted mid afternoon, and there, a km in front of us, was the hut we were heading for.

Know the basics, and practise them each year.

Remember that in an armagedon scenario they will simply switch off the gps signal for civvies Sad  . Its pretty hard to turn a piece of paper and a magnetised needle "off" Cool
  
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Re: Should I buy a handheld GPS or will the Fenix 6 watch do the same and more?
Reply #6 - May 10th, 2020 at 8:51pm
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I’m not sure that “selective availability”, and P and S codes exist anymore in regards to switching gps signal off for civies.

It never switched it off as such - just degraded it’s accuracy, and it was still accurate enough for most purposes, not good enough to guide a missile to a particular target though.
  
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Re: Should I buy a handheld GPS or will the Fenix 6 watch do the same and more?
Reply #7 - May 11th, 2020 at 1:48pm
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Just make sure your device has GLASNOSS support. Most modern phones and GPS devices do.
  
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Re: Should I buy a handheld GPS or will the Fenix 6 watch do the same and more?
Reply #8 - May 12th, 2020 at 1:48pm
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G'day

I have the Fenix 5x only.  I use in combination with a phone app and compass.  Good to go, no issues.


Cheers
  

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Re: Should I buy a handheld GPS or will the Fenix 6 watch do the same and more?
Reply #9 - May 12th, 2020 at 5:02pm
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I would guess the the battery's on the Garmin will hold way longer than your phone battery if your were using the watch with a phone app so for longer trips and safety you'd need to have a way to recharge your phone battery. 

I use a Garmin inreach with the earthmate app and that works pretty good, and the NZ topo map professional version, costs $20,  with tracking you can download to your phone works pretty good too just on its own but again phone battery life will keep your trips short. There are at least two different apps that are downloadable and I think the one mentioned above is the best. Another one just called Topo GPS doesnt seem to have a tracking function which is a shame because the maps are good and it does work well showing you where you are. 

Having said that the TopoGPS app  found my truck again when the fog rolled in in open country and was pretty happy with that as it was 11pm before it got found again. 

My pick for navigation and tracking though would be the Garmin as its all in one with a bigger screen so easier to use overall.  The Inreach I mentioned has only the messaging ability that makes it stand out as a point of difference.

  

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Re: Should I buy a handheld GPS or will the Fenix 6 watch do the same and more?
Reply #10 - May 16th, 2020 at 7:04pm
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A proper GPS will be better than the Fenix for navigation, bigger screen to start with.
  
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Re: Should I buy a handheld GPS or will the Fenix 6 watch do the same and more?
Reply #11 - May 21st, 2020 at 5:44pm
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A phone with downloaded map and water proof case along with map and compass is all you need.
Add a power bank and you can be in there for a week plus. Just remember to bring the charger cord. Grin
  

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