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Magellan EXplorist 600 Hiking GPS Navigator

Posted on October 22, 2007
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Mangellan Explorist GPS

Light, and compact, the Magellan eXplorist 600 GPS is the perfect companion for your weekend hike. But this 2.2 x 4.7 x 1.3 inches Magellan is not just compact in size but is a full featured GPS device as well. The eXplorist 600 has enough memory for a lot of topographical maps and the GPS mapping can be expanded using a high-speed USB data port and through secure digital (SD) card storage. 

By default the map of the eXplorist 600 does not provide detailed information except major highways and cities. Magellan provides downloadable topographical maps for the entire U.S. But you need to purchase the MapSend program that contains the topographical maps separately. The maps themselves feature locations of points-of-interests such as popular campgrounds and trails for your use during hiking and camping trips.

The eXplorist 600 was made to fit ergonomically in the hand. However, the compactness it offers may not work well with other people that have bigger hands than normal. The size is really up to you to consider but at only 5.4 oz (164.4 g) with batteries, this GPS is one of the lightest and smallest in the market.

The screen is small, which is to be expected in a GPS this size. It does, however, seem to provide adequate color and brightness than those in previous series. But aside from the upgrade on the screen quality, the overall design of the eXplorist 600 does not deviate much from the rest of the eXplorist series. In other words, it pretty much looks the same as its predecessors.

Nonetheless, having a waterproof and shock resistant design, the eXplorist 600 is quite useful in the wilderness where it could unexpectedly start raining anytime. Finding a decent shade or shelter from the rain before you take your heading is quite annoying. The device is sealed per IPX-7 specifications. Dipping the device in pool of water will not make it malfunction.

Another useful thing in the wild is the fact that Magellan claims that you can get a total of 17 hours of life from the batteries, that is if the back light is turned off. With back light on, however, the company claims you can squeeze up to 8 hours of use from the battery. That could be sufficient for your use but don’t take things to chance. It is still ideal that you carry an extra battery pack during your hiking trip, remember, you’re in the wild and the next charging station can be miles aways.

There are some other features that the GPS has to offer. Some of the more interesting ones include a Hunt/Fish menu were it shows you when is the best time hunt and fish at a particular location. The Sun/Moon menu, meanwhile, shows the Sunrise, Sunset, Moonrise, Moonset and Moon Phase for a particular location. The usability and importance of these features will really depend on your present needs.

At a price range of $300 to $520, the eXplorist 600 is not half bad. However, you could settle with the eXplorist 500 instead if you find the new Magellan too expensive and if you find that you really don’t need the extra features.

 
 

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