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September 4, 2007

Garmin Sucks!

Good job, Garmin. You people are a bunch of freaking nimrods. I paid close to $500 for a Garmin GPSmap 60CSx. Then, I paid $300 more to get the topo maps and city maps. It has a little memory card inside of it called a Micro SD card. You can get a Micro SD card that holds 8 gig of data. So, I'm thinking I'm in business, right? Wrong!

If you're unlucky enough to find yourself stuck with a Garmin GPS, you've probably already discovered their dirty little secret. Namely, when you save your GPS tracks, Garmin drops all the date/time stamps and truncates the map down to 500 trackpoints. Tada!

They throw away most of your data when they save the tracklog. Idiots! Like...it's a stinking text file, for god's sake. I have billions and billions of bytes of storage space to use for essentially zero cost, and they don't even allow me the option of not wiping out all of my data?

For instance, on Saturday, I rode 220 miles. At the end of the day, I had about 5,567 active waypoints. It shows the track log as 55% full. The entire file takes up a grand total of (wait for it....) 758K. That's three-quarters of a Meg. The Micro SD card holds a total of 128 Megs of data. So, at this rate, I drive 220 miles a day, and save the entire, unabridged track logs for half a year and not run out of space. This, without changing out the Micro SD memory card or buying a larger one. (Did I mention you can get an 8 gig Micro SD memory card)?

But, when I save the track log, the file is truncated to a 500 point track log with no date-time stamps. Granted, it only takes up 50K now instead of 758K, but that's not what I wanted. They threw away 708K worth of relevant, significant data. I have plenty of storage space you idiots! Just save the track log without deleting 93% of my data. Argh!

I'm going to eBay this piece of trash. God I hate Garmin. Good job, morons!

I called Garmin to ask them for clarification. I was like...'you have to be kidding me. You're not that stupid, are you?'

Well, 'yes' and 'no', as it turns out. After holding for about 20 minutes, I talked to a guy who explained things to me a little better. As it turns out, when you "Save" a tracklog, it isn't saving it to the Micro SD card. It's saving it in internal memory, and it does truncate it down to 500 points and throw away the datetime stamps. This is inexcusable, but they're convinced that it's the right thing to do, and cannot be disuaded on this point.

However, you can change the Garmin GPS unit to save the tracks to the MIcro SD card. The way to do this is to go to Main Menu - Tracks - Setup - Data Card Setup, and check the little "Log Track To Data Card" box. This will log the tracks to the Micro SD card. So, in theory, this is probably the best way to go. My understanding is that the GPS unit can't read the logs on this Micro SD card at all, but it does at least save them for posterity's sake.

Oh, and as for the 8 gig Micro SD cards? Scratch that. The Garmin GPSmap 60CSx will only support up to a 2 gig Micro SD card. (You won't find this in the owners manual, however.)

Then, they clued me into another little gem. They have deliberately hamstrung the Garmin GPmap 60CSx. Although it will support up to 10,000 GPS points, for some reason, they ship it configured to support only 3,000. So, go to Main Menu - Setup - Map, then Map SetUp - Tracks (the little squiggly line) and change "Track Points" to 10,000 instead of 3,000.

Finally, I asked them if it would be possible for me to install the Topo maps on my home server so that it wouldn't forever ask me for the CD's, and they explained how to do the "Alternate Install". Basically, what you do is create a folder like say, "Garmin". Then, copy all of the files from all 3 CD's into this folder(preserving the folder structer of the CD's). Then, run the install from this folder.

I tried this, and it was working about halfway right, so I did a system restore to Monday morning, before I tried the first install, then I re-installed using the "Alternate Install" method, and it worked.

So, I probably won't eBay this miserable thing just yet. That was a close one, Garmin. Reallll close.

Posted by Rob Kiser on September 4, 2007 at 8:59 PM


Garmin products are truly crap. Hope they go out of business soon!

Posted by: Jesse on September 6, 2007 at 10:15 PM

Garmin is an absolute nightmare. I have wasted countless hours trying to get their map software to work. It is not worth the frustration, GPS is cool but the Garmin experiencs is not worth it. I will buy paper maps over another Garmin. My advise to everyone out there is to buy something other than a Garmin or buy paper maps!

Posted by: Jeffry on July 3, 2008 at 8:27 PM

my garmin screen cracked after only a few months of use. garmin would not fix it under warranty. very poorly made.

Posted by: billy on September 29, 2008 at 1:46 PM

Here is what's going to happen.
On June 4th, 2009, 12 Garmin GPS, working, fully functional, and various models, will be attached to bricks, and tossed into a Canadian Lake.
I'd do it today but the lake is frozen. This is not a joke and will air on a website. Garmin's service and customer relations is a joke. They have no idea of what it is about. I am willing to sacrifice thousands of dollars
just so I can feel good. I already replaced Garmin with another vendor who, at the least, offers answers and not second rate technical support!
At least others keep there money in the USA!
Look up Garmin on the SEC!
Goodbye Garmin!

Pro Guide

Posted by: Guide on December 7, 2008 at 4:40 PM

My unit is a Nuvi 760.

Required to delete and input my home address several times, because the unit was allowing incorrect home address.

Many times the unit lands me at an incorrect address in routing.

Many addresses I input are not recognized my the unit. These are old established addresses.

My first unit functioned for about three days, then died. I received a return number from Garmin, but was required to pay shipping. I'm not at all pleased with this unit or Garmin service.

Posted by: Jim on January 16, 2009 at 8:44 AM

On the same page with Garmin. There was so little information about the 60CSX that I had to write my own user manual!

On the good side, as of March 2009 you can use 8gb cards (see the article I link to above).



Posted by: Andy on May 2, 2009 at 2:36 AM

SORRY about the quadruple post, I clicked POST and kept getting an error message.

Sorry sorry sorry!

If there is a moderator, can you please remove the extra posts?



Posted by: Andy on May 2, 2009 at 2:50 AM

You idiots, if you learn how to read you would not have this problem. This is clearly your own stupidity for not paying attention. Why would you spend that type of money without researching before you make a purchase. You come on here and bash Garmin even though at the end of your message all of your insecurities got solved. Also City Navigator cost $99 and Topo is $116 where did you buy your maps from cause obviously you got ripped. My advice to you, before you assume something how bout you get your facts straight first!!!!!!!!!

Posted by: Happy Garmin Customer on October 8, 2009 at 2:38 PM

Ermm. I have to say that Garmin do some weird things, it's like they are stuck in 1988. Their whole OS stinks.

Thanks for sharing the 3000 / 10000 GPS points tip.

Posted by: Mark on December 30, 2009 at 5:35 PM

here is the same story- bought the 60csx abd no topo maps. HOW STUPID.NOw I have to buy addition software. I own a nuvi and it works fine except it telling me to make a left into a stream.
I am a server admin and own my server watch out garmin- look for garmin sucks . info soon

Posted by: Mike Cianciosi on February 9, 2010 at 7:55 AM

GARMIN SUCKS - you pay a couple of hundred bucks to watch their "offers" advertisements when you are stopped. That's tragic and, no, you can't stop them. Sick

Posted by: ron on December 23, 2010 at 5:38 PM

Yep, I too spent a lot of money for a 'good' unit, a 60CSX! This little thing keeps routing me through fire service roads even though highways are available nearby!


Posted by: Linh Dinh on May 30, 2011 at 9:46 PM

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