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GPS and Mac

Discussion in 'GPS Stuff' started by Dogger, Aug 20, 2011.

  1. Dogger

    Dogger Limited User

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    I'm looking to get myself a gps. Leaning towards trying to find a garmin 60, but I am able to pick up a 76map on the cheap. I have access to TOPO maps canada which is what I want. Is there anything I need to know to try and work with these on a Mac? Do I need another program that isn't already on your average mac?
  2. DerekR

    DerekR ODSC-OFTR Member

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    You'll want to download Garmin Basecamp for Mac from the Garmin site here:
    http://www8.garmin.com/support/download ... sp?id=4450

    And Garmin Map Manager for Mac to transfer the sections of map you want from the DVD to the GPS:
    http://www8.garmin.com/support/collecti ... 9-99999-06

    Note: if you buy the pre-programmed MicroSD cards instead of the DVD version you cannot transfer those maps to your computer so you can plan trips etc, so if you want to plan out tracks or routes you need the DVD version.
  3. Dogger

    Dogger Limited User

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    Thanks, I had a feeling it wouldn't just be a plug and play :x .
  4. SteveP

    SteveP Ride Organizer

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    why does this stuff need to be soooooooo confusing??!!! :(

    I"m also trying to figure what I need over and above what comes out of the box with my new Garmin. For example, I'm please to know that I reside on a brown patch according to my gps, although I'm pretty sure I reside in Kitchener. I know that most of the local areas I've just ridden with my new gps are also apparently brown patches too. Weird. I'm pretty sure they were paved and gravel roads, that have been in existence for at least several decades.....


    ....so, I've been searching these threads in this forum, to see what most folks are downloading for better mapping on the Garmin 76cx. I see one old thread indicated free to download Ibycus maps...any thoughts?
  5. DerekR

    DerekR ODSC-OFTR Member

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    I'm no Bob or Tony, but here's what I've been able to figure out, it's not that bad once you get going on it.

    At the risk of repeating stuff you already know, the GPS comes with the base map only on it's internal memory, shows only major highways and water. The detailed roads and stuff have to be loaded on from a DVD or you can get the preprogrammed microSD cards, but as stated before, you can't plan routes on your computer that way.

    Personally, I just bought this DVD (now $69) rather than mess around with friends giving me copies etc, that way you own it and can reload it anytime, etc:
    http://www.gpscity.ca/garmin-topographi ... ecamp.html

    It has both Mac and PC versions on it, is not locked or any of that other bs. I think the GPS thing has gotten easier than was a few years ago, As far as Garmin stuff goes anyway.

    You just need to pick up a 4gb MicroSD card at Wallmart or wherever, put that in the GPS (make sure to set the actual GPS's settings to save data to the memory card rather than internal memory, is not easy to find but is in the labyrinth of menus there somewhere), plug in the usb cable to the computer, launch Map Manager and highlight the maps you want to load on to the GPS, then click Send to GPS. Start off with only the areas you actually need so you get an idea of how much space each chunk takes up on the memory card and also how long it takes to load, can be up to an hour depending on the density of the roads/topo info in the area.

    Then launch Basecamp and you can transfer your tracks, waypoints etc back and forth, make a new track on the computer and send it to the GPS, save stuff you have already marked on the GPS, etc.

    One thing though, the topographic maps are not great for street riding, though I use them for that fine, but they don't show city names and street names that easily, depending on how zoomed in/out you are. Sometimes on the street you wish it would stop telling you what elevation you are at and just tell you what friggin town you are coming up to. Sometimes I think I will buy the MetroCanada street oreinted maps for that reason. I've recently heard about a Backroads focused version which sounds ideal for dual sport.

    Hope that helps somewhat.

    Derek
  6. SteveP

    SteveP Ride Organizer

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    Thanks Derek, that is helpful for sure. I guess the one you got off the garmin came to you via mail, and you didn't download from their site right? You got the dvd? I think Randy indicated he uses MetroCanada maps, or MeteoCanada and he's happy with that. I'm not sure what he texted me...could have been mispelled.
  7. DerekR

    DerekR ODSC-OFTR Member

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    The maps DVD does come with the Basecamp application on it too, then once launched it will probably have you download the latest update for it from Garmin. Or you can just download the latest from the Garmin website. Can't remember if MapManager was on there as well. Both Basecamp and MapManager are free downloads, BTW. Once the maps from the DVD have been installed onto your computer then MapManager will find them and you can choose which map regions to send to your GPS.

    I don't think most people put all of Canada on their GPS at one time, I think it may be better not to fill up the memory card completely, then if you are going to another part of Canada to ride, load those map regions before you go, that way keeping things a little leaner/faster while riding in your normal areas? I could be wrong. I currently have most of Ontario, plus some NY and Pennsylvania map regions on my card. When I went to California earlier this year I transferred those regions to the GPS via MapManager as well. (I bought the USA Topo DVD as well). I only recently realized I could have maps from both the Canada DVD and the USA DVD on the same card.

    EDIT: I just realized you are maybe thinking maps can be downloaded from Garmin? I don't think so, and I think I once tried to buy a DVD from their site but it didn't work right, maybe no Canadian orders, can't remember. Better to order from GPScity or GPScentral, usually 2 days max.

    Re the Topo vs the MetroCanada, for example, as you ride through Cambridge, on the Topo map you may not see the word Cambridge anywhere, but you will see the village of Blair, and who gives a rats ass about that? :lol: (Waiting for Randy) (Actually I love the roundabouts!)
  8. MikeF

    MikeF ODSC-OFTR Member

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    For what it's worth, I use BaseCamp on a Mac, Topo Canada V4 and a non-current 2010 version of City Navigator North America (MetroGuide is ancient) on a Garmin Oregon 450. I ride both on and off-road. If I can be of assistance, let me know.