# Best priced GPS for the money?

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#### CALL911

##### Well-Known Member
What is the best portable GPS system to get without spending a fortune?

I've been looking at the Garmin 296 (used since they don't make them anymore), but don't know much about the smaller aircraft GPS systems.

Ideally I'd like to keep the bill under $700. Preferably under$500.

#### bmcj

##### Well-Known Member
HBA Supporter
We picked up a bunch of Garmin 255W's for use by the Sheriff's Air Squadron. They are not aviation specific, but when set in "off-road" mode, they work reasonably well by giving a visual track and actual track display. They can also be updated with overlays, etc, and the tracks can be downloaded for analysis later. Not sure how the internal antenna responds to a high metal wing yet.

#### CALL911

##### Well-Known Member
What all does the 196 do? I know thats the one that is black and white, right?

#### wally

##### Well-Known Member
I use a Magellen 315. It is from 1999 era but works just dandy. It has a database with medium and large cities already in it and a user database you can add your own waypoints to. It does not have a moving map or much in the way of whistles and bells but it navigates, does give groundspeed and heading, and bearing and distance to waypoints. In conjunction with a sectional, it is very adequate.

I am thinking you could find one less than $100 used, maybe even less than that. An$8 sectional alone will give you pretty good navigation information. People used to use them all the time.
Wally

#### CALL911

##### Well-Known Member
^ And some still do!

#### Toobuilder

##### Well-Known Member
Log Member
What all does the 196 do? I know thats the one that is black and white, right?

The 196 is in greyscale, but that slight downside is offset by the very fast refresh rate of the display (compared to some early color models). What all does it do? well, in short, a LOT! My most commonly used features are the moving map, HSI, flight instruments display (the six pack), flight log, vertical navigation, and about a hundred different ways to display ETE, ETA, distance, speed, etc.

About the only thing it does NOT have is color, XM weather and detailed terrain alerting that is common on today's devices.

I don't know exactly what features you are looking for, but if you are like me, you would find this unit to be far more capable than you really need.

^ Sweet!

#### etterre

##### Well-Known Member
I have a 196 as well - it does everything I need and the price was right... biggest downside to me is the 9-pin serial cable. Since I don't have a computer with a serial port, I haven't updated the maps or the firmware. Mine is actually old enough that it doesn't have the "panel" page. At some point I'll probably buy a serial card to stick in one of the PCI slots in my desktop.

#### texas-buzzard

##### Well-Known Member
I got a Garmin 196 and love it . Best bang for the buck.

#### CALL911

##### Well-Known Member
Okay so this has been a while. I like the Garmin 196 and all that it offers. But what about something on a smaller scale? What if I just wanted something basic that I could plug a lat long into (my home) and give me directions to other known airfields?

#### DarylP

##### Well-Known Member
For ultralight flying (and for hiking, hunting, and driving) I use a Garmin 60CSx to which I've added airport and airspace information. Not a true aviation GPS, but more than adequate for my purposes.

-Dana

#### zk-jkw

##### Well-Known Member
If you have an iPhone, the software Air Nav works nicely for US$10 for the standard version or ~US$35 for the pro version. I use it as a backup to my paper maps...

The catch with the iPhone is GPS only works when you have reception.

#### CALL911

##### Well-Known Member
Well although the Megellan 315 doesn't have "everything" I want. At the price I can get it for, I may end up just getting that for the time being to help with simple VFR navigation. I could use a chart, but in a little plane, there isn't much room. Later down the road, I would really like to get the Garmin 196. I just don't know that it is in the budget this year.

Does anyone else have any GPS suggestions?

(BTW, I don't have an iphone)

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