Friday, March 2, 2012

Magellan eXplorist 610 review

We here at Fishmax have been playing with a hand held GPS unit, the Magellan eXplorist 610. But to call the 610 just a handheld GPS is doing this unit a bit of a disservice. This unit is the Swiss army knife of the handhelds. As well as high-sensitivity sat-nav, the 610 has an in-built 3.2 mega-pixel camera, a 3 axis electronic compass, a barometric altimeter, 2D and 3D topographical maps, complete road maps for the United States, Canada, Western Europe and Australia, geocaching, geotagging, media playing and tracking. Yep, there is certainly a lot packed into this rugged little unit!

The unit is quite easy to use straight out of the box. Driving it is via the 3 inch, sunlight readable touch screen. The menu is intuitive, but because of the numerous features, to get the most out of the eXplorist 610 you should sit down for a few hours with easy to read user manual. Not something most fishermen are good at!

The eXplorist 610 is quite large and a bit weighty because of its hard shell and shape. But it does give you the confidence that it can take a knock or two without any problem. As a plus to fishermen this unit it waterproof and will survive a dunking. A large loop at one end makes for easy attachment to a strap.

The unit runs on 2 AA batteries which will last up to 16 hours under normal conditions. One thing we noticed was that the GPS locks onto satellites instantly. No waiting around like some of the cheaper handheld units.

At the recommended retail price of $699 it is a bit more than most fishermen would want to pay for a backup unit for a boat, but for some this would be the ideal unit. If you’re into getting off the beaten track, into hiking, mountain biking or geocaching, kayak fishing, fishing remote streams and rivers or exploring this great country of ours, then this could be the unit for you!

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