Very easy to use Garmin nuvi 760 4.3-Inch Widescreen Bluetooth Portable GPS Navigator
Most features I've seen in a GPS priced below $250 and getting cheaper each day.
Discontinued. The hotdog sized 12v plug is a little on the long side, 4.5 inches.
The Bottom Line:
More features than you would normally expect in a navagation system priced below $250. Easy enough for anyone to operate from out of the box without consulting the owners manual.
If you have a list of "must have" features in a GPS this Garmin 760 should be very accommodating:
The Garmin 760 is being phased out soon if not already and the model 765T will take its place. The visual differences are noticeable and the added features are useful but are you ready to spend the extra $300-400? As I recall the last time I looked at the Garmin 760 was around March 2008 and moderately priced at around $500. In late December 2008 I decided to give the Garmin 760 a try for the amount of features offered, screen size and unbelievable price of only $250. Thankfully this device is performing as it should and I haven't gotten lost. Being my first GPS purchase I have nothing to compare it with other than doing comparative shopping or as a passenger in a few vehicles I've driven in that were navigated by a GPS device.
The main navigational settings:
Route Preference, Faster Time, Shorter distance, off road, avoidances.
So far this 760 has been a "Set it and Forget it" device. Not once have I had to change settings or push buttons during the route. I have also decided to go with the (not the safest) "mute mode" and simply glance at the screen and follow the big white arrow for guidance. I won't call this a glitch but depending on how you've made your settings this device can choose a particular way of going to a nearby town. I've taken the same "back way" each time, both my Garmin and mapquest want to take me through the major roads and show a "5.38 mile 9 minute" route yet there's more traffic and stop-lights. Now google and I have this one particular trip figured out and turns out to be not only shorter in distance (4.7 miles- 12 minutes) but in actual time (9 minutes). I'm sure this isn't always true but I'll be doing a lot of comparisons over the next few weeks to see "Who's got the quickest most efficient way"?
The Pros and what I like most:
Thanks to the large easy to read Main Menu screen, once the Garmin 760 is powered on a beginner can easily start using the device without going through the instruction booklet. The "user friendly" intuitive interface will allow you to easily input data quickly and accurately.
I typically go with the flow of traffic or within 5 mph of the posted speed limit but the Garmin 760 can display (when available) if you're exceeding the speed limit on the map screen or you can set the Garmin 760 to alert you by voice. You can also disable this feature if you prefer not to see it.
The Garmin 760 has the ability to get me back on track even when I've made a diversion in my route. Making an unscheduled pit stop for food or gas requires no resetting, just listen or watch the commands and you're back on track.
Very good text-to-speech ability and the Garmin 760 has over 110 voice playback combinations. Our 500 mile return trip from Oregon to California was less monotonous as my co-pilot had hours of fun experimenting with the voices and other features.
The "Where am I" button or "one-touch" access to your current location, as well as nearby hospitals, police, gas stations and fast food restaurants.
The brightest GPS display I've ever seen and with easily readable text. I can't imagine needing to use the Garmin 760 at its brightest setting unless I needed to light up a darkened room.
The system remembers a recently used address and can even find a location by typing in a partial name but to avoid mishaps the user should still have the complete address, including zip code.
Trip Information Screen: (Trip Recorder)
I just discovered the latest tool (as there are quite a few) which displays a running counter of various statistics. This is not a feature I recommend undertaking while driving as it requires you take your eyes and attention from the road. By touching the "Arrival Time" icon area on the screen an array of statistics appear regarding your current trip. Here's something of interest. Give the Garmin 760 to a family member you suspect having a "lead foot". Upon their return go to the statistics screen, it will display "Max Speed" as well as total time, moving time, total miles, miles driven, time stopped, etc. So the next time your son says "Dad, can I borrow the Porsche? You'll have some very amazing but true data!
A problem or two:
Last weekend my son and I were going 15 miles across town to look at a car. I gave him the address to input the data. I felt we were going in the right direction until the Garmin 760 was telling me to take an exit 4 miles before where I knew the approximate destination was. We figured out quickly how to look up the original coordinates and within seconds change the street name from (blvd) to (rd). This is when we finally found the "space bar" (located to the right of letter Z) which helped us find the "2 word" street name (Del Paso) then it gave the 2 optional (blvd or rd) addresses. The more correct data you enter, the better the results. My son told me all he typed in originally was "Del" then hit "done" because he didn't know where the space bar was.
Last summer a small town I travel through frequently has lowered the speed limit city-wide to a maximum of 40 MPH. The Garmin thinks it's still 45 so hopefully when I update it will correct the discrepancy.
For the heavy traffic commuter:
Optional and not yet activated as I'm not one of those who regularly commute in heavy traffic but you can receive real-time traffic updates. The Garmin 760 comes with a (3 month free trial) then you'll need to pay $60 annual subscription fee. Be warned once you ask it or select traffic report your 3 month free trial begins.
Not many GPS devices have Multi Destination Routing ability and this was a big plus in my purchasing decision. You can create multiple destinations and have them automatically sorted for the most optimal route. This would have been real handy last years Valentine's Day when I helped my son deliver flowers. With about 20 stops within a 25 mile radius the printed route sheet given to us was hard to read plus one of the addresses didn't even exist. The manual says you can record up to 50 points, I can't imagine needing this many unless you were using it commercially.
Where's my car?
This hasn't happened to me but I know this can come in handy. On a few occasions I've come close to this situation at a concert or sporting event at the ARCO Arena in Sacramento. You go in during daylight and come out later at night a little disorientated. If you take your Garmin 760 with you it can guide you back to your vehicle. Once you detach from the mount and with a few touch screen commands you're instantly headed in the right direction.
Sooner or later you'll need to have Bluetooth as most states will not allow the use of cell phones while driving. There is a compatibility chart on the Garmin website to see if your phone will work. You can receive and place calls from stored numbers in your Phone Book, the Garmin 760 can even use your recent history log. I personally have chosen to keep my Palm Centro on its own Bluetooth.
In the film Rain Man, Raymond Babbitt refused to travel any major highway so his brother Charlie was forced to drive their 1949 Buick Roadmaster the scenic route. Should your co-pilot or a passenger suddenly discover he's not wearing underwear you can use the Garmin 760 to find the nearest K-Mart. For what it's worth you can also select a route that avoids toll-booths but this doesn't sound like a very efficient method.
Unused and untested features:
I may never use the SD card slot for viewing photos or listening to mp3's and I don't plan on downloading any customized car-shaped icons either. Should you decide to listen to an audio-book through the Garmin while driving you can do so and with any of the 111 voice combinations available.
The bicycle mode is available for those who decide to take a bike path and by choosing the Pedestrian mode you can use the Garmin while strolling through downtown without getting lost, find the nearest pub or café. If you decide to jump in a cab just reset it to driving mode.
If you decide to set the 4 digit lock code it renders the GPS useless. If you forget the code it must be sent or taken to an authorized repair facility. Garmin calls this a "theft prevention system" but it still won't keep someone from smashing your driver's side window and making off with the device.
We all know what a helpful little gadget this can be and since owning the 760 I've noticed only a few situations worth mentioning, nothing major. The arrival time displayed at the bottom left of the screen can be somewhat inaccurate. It keeps updating and adding minutes while in slow traffic or at stop-lights so I wouldn't rely 100% on this information until you're towards the end of the route. Secondly you're going to want to update your GPS as soon as you get it and at least every month or so thereafter. The previous mentioned city-wide speed limit change is something you'll want to be aware of.
For a GPS device in this price range with the amount of technology packed in and if I had to replace it today I would honestly buy another one. The battery life is advertised to be up to 5 hours and I haven't had problems in this mode for more than 2. The screen does get noticeably brighter when plugged back into the accessory outlet. This was a good buy and with the features this GPS comes with you shouldn't be disappointed.
Even after 2 months of ownership I'm continually fine tuning my skills and enjoy owning the device. One more notable thing worth mentioning is the speed in which the Garmin 760 powers up and that it's ready for input within 30 seconds. Once you've entered your destination (and depending on the task) the Garmin 760 will take anywhere from 5-30 seconds to respond, it says "searching for satellites. Only when you over task or give an unusual command will it act sluggish or display a rotating hour glass.
What's in the box?
The Garmin nuvi 760, Preloaded City Navigator NT for North America, FM traffic receiver with vehicle power cable, 3-month subscription to TMC real-time traffic services, vehicle suction cup mount, USB cable, dashboard disc, quick start manual.
There are a few optional accessories available for the 760 and one I'm considering to purchase is the 120volt to 12vdc adapter (Part Number: 010-10723-00). Just as you would have one for your cell phone this will allow your Garmin 760 to be fully charged when you hit the streets. I'm considering the "Portable Friction Dashboard Mount" (Part Number: 010-10908-00) but for now my Chevy truck's in-dash cup-holder is doing an OK job.
Currently 1 year parts/labor but I recommend checking with the Garmin website directly for terms and conditions.
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