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View Full Version : My GPS (Compaq / Earthmate)



modette
02-19-2004, 06:00 PM
I bought a new computer so I went for a laptop this time, I got a Compaq 2585US. I also decided to get the Delorme Earthmate GPS, comes with software and receiver for $129. The Delorme software stunk, the fiancee got me Streets & Trips 2004 and this is great software. Plus I like the laptop for a GPS rather then a handheld or a Garmin with those small displays. Plus this way I can hold so much information I wont run out of room (60GB). True expensive to do it this route, but heck why not....cost a ton to get a Megallen NAV750 too ($1,400). Oh if anyone goes this route make sure to get a power inverter so you can keep the lapton running the whole time.

Wish I had this setup last year when I did the CA, NV GhostTown trip...it sucked printing out all the pages and taking from this site out to CA...lol What a waste of paper but it was the only way I had.

~Mark

High Desert Drifter
02-21-2004, 01:50 AM
I bought a new computer so I went for a laptop this time, I got a Compaq 2585US. I also decided to get the Delorme Earthmate GPS, comes with software and receiver for $129. The Delorme software stunk, the fiancee got me Streets & Trips 2004 and this is great software. Plus I like the laptop for a GPS rather then a handheld or a Garmin with those small displays. Plus this way I can hold so much information I wont run out of room (60GB). True expensive to do it this route, but heck why not....cost a ton to get a Megallen NAV750 too ($1,400). Oh if anyone goes this route make sure to get a power inverter so you can keep the lapton running the whole time.

Wish I had this setup last year when I did the CA, NV GhostTown trip...it sucked printing out all the pages and taking from this site out to CA...lol What a waste of paper but it was the only way I had.

~Mark


Mark,

I agree. A gps and software are the way to go. It makes ghost towning all that more fun. I use the Garmin III Plus which comes with preloaded real time moving street software and I combined it with an Acer Travelmate Laptop and Map Source Topo software. Now I can make and download my own maps from the lap top and download straight to the gps. The topo software is excellent because it has all the trails and mine sites indicated, plus you can add locations by point and click to the map or by Lat/Lon. I can sit for hours planning a trip or searching for new places to explore. I even installed a second battery in my suburban to run the computer, gps and map light in the back while bedding down for the night out in the middle of the desert. Have fun with you toys ! maybe we will run in to eachother some time out in the Nevada Desert..

High Desert Drifter

traxtermax
06-04-2004, 07:35 PM
I also used a laptop and either Delorme or Maptech topo quads connected to a Garmin E Trex (the cheap yellow one). Though I found what you say to be true, I really beat up my laptop (vibration, dust and unintentional rough handling) so in the future I have opted to use the Garmin connected to the E Trex and a PDA (I think that's the term). I can put a zip lock over the PDA and this combination takes up much less space. While ghosttowning, it was difficult to have a laptop in the front seat between my wife and I not to mention the fact that we couldn't put anything else on the seat. In the future, instead of using a Jeep, we are going to use a 1/2 ton truck and an ATV hence my concern about size and dust. This option has disadvantages: (1) The only topos I know of are Maptech's and they need a PC operating system (Palm won't work), (2) they have relatively small screens, (3) Maptech's topos are $100 per state, (4) you need a cable to connect the PDA and GPS BUT: (a) you can use Bluetooth, a wireless system that eliminates the cable, (b) PDA's are considerably cheaper than laptops BUT YOU NEED A LAPTOP AT SOME POINT TO PUT TOPO DATE IN THE PDA since the PDA's memory isn't big enough to hold one state (usually 4-8 CD's). It should be noted that these topos are 7.5 minute maps and show mine details i.e. shaft, adit, tunnel, etc. I guess you'll have to assess how important portability and storage space is to your situation. I'm certainly no expert in this field but this is what I have learned to date.

Ghosttowns.com
06-05-2004, 01:17 AM
If you are going to go to a PDA like we use then why not try this system we posted about already ... much easier then carrying a pda and a gps to input to the pda etc...


We always get asked which GPS unit we use when we go ghost towning at ghosttowns.com. Well, we use compaq Ipaq pocket pc's like the 3955. Then we use the Navman2 GPS Sleeve for the compaq ipaq's. Then we use the Pocket Navigator Software to interface the GPS with real 7.5" USGS topo maps (available from Maptech). Of course we have dash mounts and external power for when travelliing.

What does all of that make? A nice hand held full color (3 x 4 inch screen) moving map GPS unit that is both powered by the vehicle when driving but you can also grab and take it with you when hiking, and all the while you can see your exact position on a real USGS 7.5" (the most detailed) topographical map. There is nothing better then that! All of that can be had for about $700 including the maps you need for your state.

Any drawbacks? the 7.5 maps take a lot of mem so you need to get a few 256mb cf cards and load all the maps you think you might want before you go. Other then that, no...

Whats also nice is you not only have the gps/moving map but its also a pocket pc so you have all that goes along with that as well such as email, word, your address book - games, calendars and much more.

traxtermax
06-05-2004, 05:44 PM
I'll second that even though I haven't read previous posts pertaining to this subject. A while ago I bought a Dell PDA and didn't know if it would suit my purposes so I used the CF (Compact Flash) GPS unit that inserts into the PDA. That way, if the PDA didn't suit my purposes I could use the CF with another brand or model PDA without the additional expense of purchasing another Nav sleeve (at the time they seemed to be limited to select models). The disadvantage is that the CF uses a memory slot that can't be used to store mapping data. That's a disadvantage because we take 6-7 week trips and must use a computer to download topos of the immediate area.
Since the Nav sleeves are dedicated to certain PDA models (at least they were at the time), I didn't want to go to the expense of Nav sleeves--maybe I would have if I had been familiar with PDA's but I wanted to use the cheapest, most flexible route to test both systems. After I used the units for a while, I was afraid of dropping or banging the CF unit (it sticks out the top of the PDA) and what that might do to the PDA. That and an advertised software function that wasn't really available at the time, caused me to return both units. Though Nav sleeves appear more convienient and probably would protect the PDA from "drop/bump damage", I could use both units independently. I use the E Trex on the boat as is (Maptech is well suited to marine navigation too--can't do that with the CF) and the PDA can be used for non-navigational purposes as well. The PDA is probably cheaper to replace too.
I don't think there is any doubt that Nav sleeves could protect the PDA if dropped, and if you are willing to commit to a PDA that's Navman compatible, nav sleeves make the most sense. Since I already had the E Trex, I used what I had to build a cheap, flexible navigational system.
I spoke to a Garmin rep and, though he has an ax to grind, says computers (laptops and PDA's) aren't made to take the abuse that a GPSs can. He probably has a point because I don't know of any PDA's that are "waterproof".

Jeepinparrothead
11-29-2004, 06:04 PM
Hey there guys. I am not so much a ghosttowner or what ever you call yourselves, but I have stumbbled across your forum while searching for the best GPS software and handheld devices. I read this thread and it has been very helpful. For that I thank you. First some info. I am an Offroad specialist, land conservation enthusiast. I am a member of more organizations than I care to mention. I am finding myself getting lost on some of the new land that people would like to be patroled and keep clean. I need something to help me out. I am going to run a handheld and a laptop combo. I wheel a Grand Cherokee so space is not bad. What I get from yall is that MapSource Topo is the best right? I think I am going to go with the Magellen Meridian Gold. The software HAS to be able to pinpoint me and track me on the map, hooked up to the Meridian of course. This is my first experience with GPS and I need all the help I can get. All of the Jeep guys I know that have this set up, run older software that doesn't exsist anymore so any help yall can give me would be appreciated. Thanks in advance. I won't be checking this very often so feel free to email me at ChrisDepew@knology.net, or call me at 256-759-9683, my nextel Priv. ID is 27*18829. Contact me anyway you feel comfortable. Thanks again.