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  1.    #1  
    I've used GPS on my laptop since 2004 so I have a very clear idea how it works and what I want from it. It's become indispensible for use in the car and the allure of having it in my pocket at all times is very attractive. So, the search began.

    All the buzz all the time is Tom Tom so I looked at them and it's no doubt a good system but I knew I wouldn't stop using my laptop GPS for car travel so TT is a bit of overkill for my purposes of an easy to use personal gps for walking in new cities, taxis, finding POIs, etc. DeLorme makes you plot a route on your laptop and then DL it to the Treo which is useless if you already use GPS on the laptop and the Mapopolis SD card would be fantastic but who has 16 megs of ram free on a 650???

    Amost as an afterthought, I DL'd Earthcomber just to see what maps would look like on my 650 and was amazed at it's versatility and comprehensiveness, especially considering it's free. It has extensive POIs for most anything a casual user would want, free wifi spots, restuarants, gas stations, ATMs and on and on. You can quickly select what your looking for, tell it the range to look in miles around you and turn it loose and little location dots pop up, tap the dot and it gives you the name telephone number and a map to the location. I was not in my neighborhood the other day and wanted to buy some oil for for an oil change and 45 seconds later I had a map and an address for the closest auto parts store. Not bad.

    After using Earthcomber for a few days I wanted a BT GPS module as soon as possible but was clueless as to what might be the correct price and features. After studying the various types available I knew I wanted the latest SiRF III technology and in searching here and "that other place" the name Holux popped up enough times to warrant an eBay search and there it was, 97 bucks delivered and in due course it arrived at my door.

    Set up is mindless, turn the GPS module on, click the GPS symbol in Earthcomber, click yes, select Holux, click OK and there you are on the map, it's just that easy.

    The kit I ordered came with an Arkon vent mount for the 650 but it's a little too intense for me and would block an AC vent and in Texas that isn't an attractive mounting solution so I found a niche on my steering column that fits the Treo perfectly and is easy to see while driving. I would use my laptop for a "real" trip but for running around town in an unfamiliar neighborhood the 650 will be perfect. The map rolls as you drive always keeping centered.

    I was making plans to have all the necessary cables in the car for charging the Treo and the GPS module but soon realized the battery life on both the Treo *and* the Holux (10 hours continuous operation) far exceed any time I might spend driving during the day. I have a charger for the Treo in the car, house and at work but only use the one at work.

    http://users3.ev1.net/~rlcarver/gps4.jpg

    http://users3.ev1.net/~rlcarver/gps6.jpg

    http://users3.ev1.net/~rlcarver/gps1.jpg

    http://users3.ev1.net/~rlcarver/gps2.jpg

    http://users3.ev1.net/~rlcarver/gps3.jpg

    The Holux GPS is accurate, easy to use and will make GPS a daily part of my life which I been looking forward to for a long time. I travel a bit and this set up will be a tremendous addition to my experiences wherever I go in the US. County maps are downloadable for free at Earthcomber for wherever you might travel and are easily kept on your SD card. The way Earthcomber makes their money is by selling up to date Guides for various cities. I travel to DC a bit and 9.50US is a small price to pay for current travel and entertainment information, same for other areas I go on business.
  2. #2  
    I am getting a GPS soon myself, I keep looking at eBay hoping to find some sort of steal, so far no such luck.

    Glad to hear it's a simple config and go with earthcomber. I use EC all the time by punching in the location, GPS would make it even better.

    EC is coming out with mapped directions sometime in the near future too, so that'll be nice. Only thing else to go with the GPS is stuff for Geocaching, of which there are several excellent threads here about.
  3. Tmair's Avatar
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    #3  
    Just to day I used my new GPS reciever, I signed up for the deal in Telenav, 6 months service =$60.00 recieve free GPS reciever, it works great as long as you are in your home phone service area, lost the siginal early on in the trip, fortunaly I knew where I was going and was just playing, anyway I turned on Earthcomber and it worked great, able to track my movement, I'm relatively happy, maped directions would be great, that would be every thing I need...pretty much.
    Also I did take the Gps reciever and put it in the glove box, on the floor, in the little cubby hole that collects all the coins, and it kept updating the maps, these new units are great, I had a $500 Eagle map guide pro and after a wyle it would loose the siginal on a cloudy day,and the DeLorme program and GPS I have on my laptop, which by the way I love wont keep a siginal if you take it off of the dash where it can see the sky.
    Terry
  4.    #4  
    Quote Originally Posted by Tmair
    Just to day I used my new GPS reciever, I signed up for the deal in Telenav, 6 months service =$60.00 recieve free GPS reciever, it works great as long as you are in your home phone service area, lost the siginal early on in the trip, fortunaly I knew where I was going and was just playing, anyway I turned on Earthcomber and it worked great, able to track my movement, I'm relatively happy, maped directions would be great, that would be every thing I need...pretty much.
    Also I did take the Gps reciever and put it in the glove box, on the floor, in the little cubby hole that collects all the coins, and it kept updating the maps, these new units are great, I had a $500 Eagle map guide pro and after a wyle it would loose the siginal on a cloudy day,and the DeLorme program and GPS I have on my laptop, which by the way I love wont keep a siginal if you take it off of the dash where it can see the sky.
    Terry
    True, I've used DeLorme since 04 and just bought 06 a few months ago. It a good system but the old yellow USB GPS a few generations behind and isn't too strong. This new BT gets a signal in the house! Very impressive!

    http://users3.ev1.net/~rlcarver/dlpack.jpg
  5. #5  
    Quote Originally Posted by RichardCarver
    All the buzz all the time is Tom Tom so I looked at them and it's no doubt a good system but I knew I wouldn't stop using my laptop GPS for car travel
    When you get out of your car, for hiking or geocaching, you will need an off-road GPS program like
    GeoNiche. It works well with the Holux GPSlim 236.
  6. Tmair's Avatar
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    #6  
    I just went and looked at GeoNiche and I am not so sure it would be better or even as good at earthcomber, if it had maps perhaps.
    Terry
  7. Tmair's Avatar
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    #7  
    Quote Originally Posted by RichardCarver
    True, I've used DeLorme since 04 and just bought 06 a few months ago. It a good system but the old yellow USB GPS a few generations behind and isn't too strong. This new BT gets a signal in the house! Very impressive!

    http://users3.ev1.net/~rlcarver/dlpack.jpg
    I bought my first one in 03, then I took advantadge of their upgrade for a price and got the Topo version, I am sure that Topo maps are great for some people but for me I would have been better off to just upgrade the street atlas, I may look into getting the bluetooth adaptor for the laptop and use the reciever I got from Telenav, it seams to be a good reciever I have not tried to get a lock in the house yet...nope both Telenav and Earthbomber showed a week siginal, but at least it did get some siginal, the one I have now for the lap top would not get a siginal of any kind in the house.
    Terry
  8. Tmair's Avatar
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    #8  
    Quote Originally Posted by RayDar
    When you get out of your car, for hiking or geocaching, you will need an off-road GPS program like
    GeoNiche. It works well with the Holux GPSlim 236.
    RayDar I downloaded your product to try it out, I cannot get it to find my coordinates, what do I need to do to get it to initialize?
    Thanks
    Terry

    P.S. I just sent you an e mail from your site.
    Thanks
  9. #9  
    Quote Originally Posted by Tmair
    RayDar I downloaded your product to try it out, I cannot get it to find my coordinates, what do I need to do to get it to initialize?
    Thank you for contacting me about this problem and helping with its diagnosis. It seems that your GPS receiver doesn't send information about the satellites in view, the type of fix obtained, or your current altitude.

    I have modified GeoNiche to assume a 2D fix when it receives the minimal information sent by your type of GPS receiver.

    I will make the 1.41B version available to you and any others who have experienced a similar situation.

    ((RayDar))
  10. Tmair's Avatar
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    #10  
    Quote Originally Posted by RayDar
    Thank you for contacting me about this problem and helping with its diagnosis. It seems that your GPS receiver doesn't send information about the satellites in view, the type of fix obtained, or your current altitude.

    I have modified GeoNiche to assume a 2D fix when it receives the minimal information sent by your type of GPS receiver.

    I will make the 1.41B version available to you and any others who have experienced a similar situation.

    ((RayDar))
    I just want to say one thing about RayDar and his product, first a little back ground, I downloaded the trial software and gave it a try, it would NOT connect with my GPS, I let RayDar know about it and he was Jonny on the spot with an e-mail, sent me a couple of things to try, and send back data information obtained from the program, maid the version he mentions here and sent it to me to try, I have only had a little bit of a chance to try the software so cannot realy coment on how well it works, but I can comment on RayDar and how he works, let me just say I AM IMPRESSED!
    Thanks for all of your help RayDar
    Terry
  11. #11  
    I got my Holux GPSlim 236 and have been playing with Earth Comber, GeoNiche, Coto, Cetus, CacheMate/CacheNav, etc.. All work well with the Holux GPS unit, no fuss. They all actually connect to it automatically except for Earth Comber, it seems to need the GPS button touched on the map.

    I must say, my first day Geocaching using GeoNiche was follow-the-arrow easy.. Perhaps too easy, but very nice software.

    Coto and Cetus I can't quite see the need for, assuming having GeoNiche. Otherwise they probably provide some good info.

    Very good stuff.. It amazes me that the Holux works perfect in my pocket in the car.. It's so tiny I just stick it in my pocket and flip the switch when I need it, give it about 10s, then connect to it, and bam, it's connected.
  12.    #12  
    Since my first post I've gotten a 10 dollar bluetooth dongle off eBay and can use the Holux with SA '06 on my laptop. Again, set up is dead easy, the dongle finds the Holux and connects and SA is acquiring satellites instantly.

    In my research of the Holux I found the battery is the same as a Nokia 3650 which are dirt cheap on eBay, I picked up two with a charger for 15 bucks.

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