Don't trust Garmin
The Garmin 50 started out as a reasonable GPS; but then try and update the maps and it became a $50 piece of junk. The voice command feature just would not work no matter what I tried. Just said the feature was unavailable in Canada in American English. A check of the Garmin Website was a joke. There was a problem with the update a year ago, which Garmin said they would fix, but after a year it is still not working correctly. I have had several GPS over the years since it first came out, and found Garmin to be the worst, with very sad customer relations. My personal advice to anyone looking to buy a GPS, do not buy a GARMIN. The one I have is just a basic $50 piece of junk with no redeeming features. Again do not buy a GARMIN.
Serious navigation issues
I like everything about this unit (voice controlling included) except it’s ability to navigate effectively. On the first day I bought it, it sent me to a dead end less than 400m away from my home. The other two problem areas I have found is that it gives very inaccurate directions when it comes to sealed roads. If I choose to avoid unsealed roads it will still direct me to unsealed roads. This inaccuracy becomes a safety issue in my opinion and Garmin should rectify this. Also when it comes to tunnels it’s presentation of routes gets very confusing and I have found without exception that if I use the gps to direct me I will always go the wrong way. Everything else about the unit works well. I’m happy with the voice command functionality.
Great unit. Can't fault it except now I see it $80 cheaper than I bought it 2 weeks ago at the same store. DOH!
A couple of annoying features that can be turned off. Great screen image and volume. Camera is also moveable so no problem placing it just about anywhere on the windscreen. Also phone works better than the bluetooth on the radio without a voice delay as with the radio. Very happy with this product 51LMT-S.
Good GPS with some oppertunities to improve
Using this for more than 18 months now. Happy with the product and functions. Didn't have GPS signal issues in City area compared to the other GPS I used before.
Map navigation is smooth, Map zooming function is good.
Live incident and traffic information very accurate. Estimated time is reasonably correct.
Receive most of the map updates within a few months.
Dashcam is good enough to cater for basic needs.
Keypad and touch screen is responsive
Search POI by category is good. Very useful
Good to show few options and allow the driver to select (Example: Shortest, Fastest, Economy Route)
Dashcam is not good enough in the night.
Sometimes it recommends small alternative routes when the free highway is closer by and no incidents reported.
Map update is not smooth (Some occasions have to do it more than ones to get it correct)
Good to have a simple way to pin the current location and save it.
The biggest problem is that despite maintaining updates, the maps are horribly inaccurate. It is very frustrating getting instructions that youhave no confidence in. Errors mainly in the route choice. It is a problem in old established road networks, not just recent changes. I will go back to a Tomtom prod t.
Do Not buy this
I bought this pricey model because of the extra features like blue tooth working with the phone. However, this feature did not work very well. When I called Garmin they sent me a refurbished model even though I just bought the new one. Then the refurbished one worked worse than the original one.
I had this unit for 2 weeks and returned it. As a dash cam it was good, but not great; as a GPS, it was OK, but not good. The accuracy was horrible: it would say to turn 50 metres too late; it would say I still had 30 metres to go to my destination when I was already there; it would say a school zone was approaching in 200 metres when I was already 3/4 of the way through! The lane departure warning mostly didn't work, I would get forward collision warnings when there were no other vehicles around, The mapping would show non-existent roads, fuel stations in paddocks and wrong speed limits. I also paid an additional $40 subscription for safety cameras and yet it didn't pick up a single camera! I have a Garmin Nuvi 3590 that is now 5 years old and that's easily still the best unit I've ever owned. As a professional driver I update my GPS units yearly but I will definitely be hesitant of buying another Garmin. Very disappointing.
Fast and accurate unit with crispy screen and cam inc forward collision warning
Maybe it was because I was so scarred from my previous unit which was utterly rubbish, that I found this unit to be such a wonderful device, but I must say it works even better than the SatNav that comes with my new Honda, which says something. Anyway despite costing $100 that the rubbish unit, it has loads more features, very fast signal pick up speed, accurate road guidance, and the cam works very well with crispy images. More below:
- Dash Cam is super sharp and captures good videos and images, and all vehicle movements are captured on video, which is 'looped' but any detected suspicious moments saved automatically. This will be very handy should one need it.
- Dash Cam detects traffic movements and actually warns of pending collision with adjustable warnings (or you can switch it off). This is the latest tech (without the breaking system) that's found on the latest Subaru. A very nice feature indeed.
- Dash Cam detects if the vehicle in front is moving after you've stopped at a traffic light and warns you, as well as a line departure warning, all of which you can switch off, but I found these features to be very useful features.
- Dash Cam can be manually adjusted to tilt sideways, together with the ball socket of the unit mount means full frontal recording can be achieved regardless of where you mount the unit.
-The unit is very responsive and GPS signals are picked up very fast.
- Screen is bright, smooth and responsive. Pitching and zooming is fast and typing and searching of address can be done easily.
- Maps are accurate with updated speed limits, and warns if one exceeds speed limit. I actually use it to check my speed now rather than looking down on my speedometer.
- Connects to the phone via bluetooth effortlessly, and can make and receive calls on speaker and receive updates on traffic conditions and weather.
- Reliable - I've left the unit mounted on the car window under a 35c sun with 35c without any issues.
- Updates are frequent, for maps and firmware.
- Maybe a bigger screen?
Anyway I am very happy with the unit. can't pick faults and it works better than the SatNav with my new car! The built and quality justifies the price.
A bit disappointing
Great to have a GPS & camera combination as it saves having two separate devices and their cables cluttering the windscreen. The LANE DEPARTURE, FORWARD COLLISION & GO ALERT just become an annoyance as they give warnings when unnecessary so I think most people will eventually turn these features off. I was a little surprised that a unit costing as much as this one does not record sound on the dash-cam, otherwise the camera is fine. My main complaint about the DriveAssist 50 is that as soon as I leave the Freeway (I live 75klm east of Adelaide South Australia) the speed limit information disappears from the screen, and along with it the over speed warning. I have driven on many country roads in the area with the same result, and even in the regional centre of Murray Bridge (over 20,000 residents) still no speed limit info on the screen.
This unit is reasonably pricey at $400 (TVSN claim normal price to be $450), I have two other GPS units costing significantly less ($80 & $130) and they both show speed limits even on the most out of the way country roads. I contacted Garmin who recommended that I return the unit to the seller as the mapping information should cover all of Australia. I received a replacement unit and guess what.. still no speed limit displayed on the screen after leaving the Freeway. If you only drive in metropolitan areas or stay on major hi-ways this unit will be fine for you. I can't comment on country regions in other parts of Australia, but if you live outside a major city you may want to check the speed limit info display before deciding to buy this unit as, in my opinion, having a warning when you exceed the speed limit is one of the main reasons to have a GPS in the car. As a footnote I have contacted Garmin by e-mail again since receiving the replacement unit....no reply received at this point.
Good clear unit with dash camera
Worked very well straight out of the box even before the full setup once we got home. The windscreen mount is nice and solid and easy to fix. A very clear display and addresses load very quickly. The integrated dashcam has a good resolution and field of view. You can playback on the unit or download to a PC for better zoom and editing. So far I'm very impressed with the unit and its apparent lifetime free maps of Oz and NZ.
I'd recommend the unit and with a couple of small software upgrades would certainly make it worth a 5. Now that its all set up I'm expecting that it will be a valuable addition and worth $358. (JB HiFi with a 20% off sale wouldn't match Harvey Norman's price, so shop around)
The negatives: Some of the default driver safety warnings that pop up and buzz are annoying (lane departure warning goes off when you're changing lanes, animal crossing signs, forward collision regularly goes off in highway traffic, etc) but they can be turned off. There's also a warning to tell you that the traffic in front at lights has started to move - Really? The school zone and a couple of others are helpful though.
I would have given it a 5 except that, apart from the basic PC interface (Garmin Express), other necessary software is time consuming and fussy to download. It wouldn't download in Firefox or M/S Edge. It has to use Internet Explorer and then you have to go into settings to trust the site. Also, safety cameras are not included in the free map updates. They have to be purchased for $40. There's only a few vehicle icon options and no download for more. Also, no additional voices apart from the standard issue 1 and again no download for more. Its a bit disappointing having moved from an old TomTom that had some of these features.
UPDATE: Feb 2017 After using the unit for a few days I'm impressed with the accuracy, speed of calculating routes and the dash cam. Most impressive is the voice command feature that means you don't have to tap the screen. Also, I have found lots of additional vehicle icons in the PC software under optional updates. Maybe there's also more voices somewhere there but I'm yet to find them.
August 22nd 2017 Update: Update after 'round Oz trip
I've downgraded my original score after 16,000kms driving around Aust. with the unit.
While it does have a good windscreen mount, some really annoying things became apparent.
It doesn't tend to show the intervening streets until the last moment, so there were many times when I couldn't count down the turns. Also, it was often behind in directions and display so there were missed turns.
It was not easy to cancel a destination if you don't want to go to its exact point in a town rather than the street number you want. It keeps telling you to turn around.
Really annoying, despite informing Garmin twice previously, some speed cameras did not register and there's an insipid little beep and tiny banner to alert and distract you rather than an audible spoken warning.
Some of the wildlife crossing warnings keep popping up despite being turned off. It Australia! Wildlife is everywhere!
I ended up wishing for my TomTom but with a dash cam by the end of the trip.
Questions & Answers
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