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  #1  
Old 8 Feb 2006
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GPS Software for Africa? Is it any good?

Hi anyone got any advice on how usefull GPS is in Africa? Cant make up my mind whether it would be a worthwhile purchase or just another piece of expensive kit to look after/loose/break. Anyone have experience with the QV software through Touratech?
Thanks for your time, Giles.
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  #2  
Old 8 Feb 2006
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Sign up on the Tracks 4 Africa website for some good advice on GPS nav and maps. Capetown to Cairo are covered but not much from west to east africa. A second hand Garmin V should cost between 100 - 150 GBP and that's fairly cheap for peace of mind. Of course it is more limited that say a 276 but it is so much cheaper. I mainly use mine mainly for getting back to camp after a day of exploring places like Jo'burg or Nairobi but it was really handy in the Maasai Mara where the place was quite big and badly signposted.

Last edited by Bundubasher; 17 Sep 2013 at 14:34.
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  #3  
Old 8 Feb 2006
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Giles,

You can quite easily do the Cape - Cairo trip without a GPS and only using conventional navigation techniques and a Michelin map, but if you want to explore well off the beaten track (and particulalry anywhere in the desert) they are very handy.

As bundubasher said, they are often most useful when entering a new city for the first time, particulalry if you have the co-ordinates of a campground etc.

Garmin World map software is sufficient if you just want the main north-south African routes.
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  #4  
Old 3 Apr 2006
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Giles

We are planning a trip out to Cape Town from UK in early 2007 www.langebaan-sunset.com and the GPS question is one we have spent a bit of time researching. We plan to use the Garmin 60CSx. Its a newer model with memory card and can handle a range of map types. Its small enough to carry if you are hiking and large enough to dash mount and see the data when on the move (we are in a Landy)

Our main reason for using GPS is that several people have logged their tracks and way points and there is some useful data on more remote areas of Africa. There's no substitute for good old paper maps and we plan to take both.

Some good ref sites for way points / GPS data before you go can be found at:

Southing, Big Sky and Dutch Courage websites. The mapping / GPS data from Tracks 4 Africa is also good but better for more South African based destinations.

In term of software. When you buy the Garmin 60 CSx you get a World base map with Trip and Way Point Manager. The base map has main roads and borders with some detail, like lakes, rivers etc... When we were in Cape Town recently we learnt that you can get a GPS based map of Africa from a company called Garmap (but we do not have a copy so cannot say more than that).

There is also a freeware product called GPS Utility that helps convert archived way point data from different file formats into compatible forms for use with your Garmin....saves re-typing them in....one at a time!!!

Hope that helps

Nick www.langebaan-sunset.com
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  #5  
Old 19 Apr 2006
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I use nav4all for quite some time, it works in turkey, sounth africa, malysia, most european countries and america, i dont kwow whether you have luck in africa with nav4all, you can have a look at their website, check which countries they support currently www.nav4all.com
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  #6  
Old 2 May 2006
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nick#6
In term of software. When you buy the Garmin 60 CSx you get a World base map with Trip and Way Point Manager. The base map has main roads and borders with some detail, like lakes, rivers etc...
You do not get a World base map ... well not onthe 60CSx I tried here in Australia. Certainly it had some base data for Australia .. but detail in Africa, Eupope and elesewhere in teh world was lacking. It had the main cities .. but no road information.

You could BUY a world map and load that to the unit .. but that is extra $. I think you get a base map that is good for teh place you buy it, less detail eleswhere in the world. You can then buy extra maps, more detail for home and/or more coverage of the world.

Garmins 60CSx page is here
http://www.garmin.com/products/gpsmap60csx/

There is a way (not used by me yet and no garentee) to transfere raster (photo) maps to the garmin ... a google on that should turn it up. I'm thinking of doing it for main cities in Africa. And Iran/Pakistan/India...
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  #7  
Old 5 May 2006
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You get either an Americas or Atlantic or Pacific basemap depending on where you purchase your GPS.
In Australia the basemap is identical to WorldMap for our third of the world.

There is a third party Garmin map creation tool called GPSmapper and a front end for it called GPSedit.
You can import objects and tracklogs as well as draw roads etc.
It is not for the faint hearted. Expect to spend hundred of hours creating your map.
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Last edited by BurnieM; 6 May 2006 at 07:35.
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  #8  
Old 5 May 2006
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world base map

Well, the Garmin 60 csx I bought in the UK has a world base map software package ("base" being the key word here as its pretty basic) Different regions of the world ship the unit with varying software packages....for example, the Garmin 60 series I saw in Cape Town in March 2006 came with different versions of the software than the Garmin 60 series I ended up getting in the UK later the same month. Even when I got it and installed it, I still had to go to the Garmin site to upgrade the version of the software I had been shipped.

There are a lot of things you can do via the Trip and Way Point Manager software and the Tracks4Africa package works well with it. I must admit, I found I had to do quite a bit of research before we bought it. Its been great for logging off road tracks and the Trip and Way Point Manager software is great.

Hope that helps

Nick
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  #9  
Old 6 May 2006
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They come with 'WorldMap type' detail in your third of the world and an even more basic (if this is possible) map for the rest of the world.

On bikes or 4WDs I would go for the GPSmap 60Cx and save yourself a little money.

The CSx has an electronic compass and pressure based altimeter.
The compass will give you a direction when stationary and
the pressure based altimeter will give you a height accurate to 3 metres (after calibration).

The Cx compass needs you to be moving to give a direction (slow walking pace or faster) and
a GPS based height is accurate to 20 metres.

The GPSmap 60Cx has a longer battery life.
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