Excited about the 276CX

kennith

Well-known member
Apr 22, 2004
9,581
15
North Carolina
Let's face it, you're not running the Darien Gap with your 276. I've had the tablet on washboard and bouncing down roads, no problem. I don't take it i the rain, I'd rather just sit inside the truck where its dry.
I carry the DeLorme Atlas / Gazeteers as a back up. We did a two week trip through Colorado back roads with just the tablet. I'd say that was a planned unsupported outing. I've also run Michigan's UP with just a GPS and then again with a tablet. Same with Kentucky backroads. Hands down the tablet wins every time. Like I said, I'd take a satellite/road hybrid map any day of the week. Or I can switch on topo.
If I were running for months on end in a remote place I'd buy an otterbox. If the tablet craps out I can pull the SD card and use it in any other device.

I'm glad you like your 276 though.
I'm not taking trips like that at the moment, but I've done that sort of thing many times in the past and I intend to do it again. It put food on the table and it was more fun than anything else I could come up with.

Not everyone has the same hobbies. Some people function better in a mobile, dynamic environment like that. I may think the idea of making little models of Civil War battles is insanity, but you won't catch me suggesting it doesn't happen just because I don't think it makes sense.

Garmin did this for a reason. They aren't just throwing reinvented heritage into a vacuum. You don't have to understand or even appreciate my position when a manufacturer of such pedigree pulls something like the 276CX out of their ass.

It's targeted right at the user you just suggested doesn't exist...

I mean, it's like saying Hustler, Snapper, and Kubota should all disappear because nobody mows twenty lawns in a day. Really?

Cheers,

Kennith
 

kennith

Well-known member
Apr 22, 2004
9,581
15
North Carolina
Let's face it, you're not running the Darien Gap with your 276. I've had the tablet on washboard and bouncing down roads, no problem. I don't take it i the rain, I'd rather just sit inside the truck where its dry.
I carry the DeLorme Atlas / Gazeteers as a back up. We did a two week trip through Colorado back roads with just the tablet. I'd say that was a planned unsupported outing. I've also run Michigan's UP with just a GPS and then again with a tablet. Same with Kentucky backroads. Hands down the tablet wins every time. Like I said, I'd take a satellite/road hybrid map any day of the week. Or I can switch on topo.
If I were running for months on end in a remote place I'd buy an otterbox. If the tablet craps out I can pull the SD card and use it in any other device.

I'm glad you like your 276 though.
A few more points:

The Darien Gap...

The funny thing is, that's precisely the trip I bought the thing with the intention of taking; Deadhorse to Ushuia. It's not the craziest journey, but it would be for me. When it happens, it'll be the first time I've done it on my own dime. It's meant to be an actual vacation this time, with room to explore all the cool stuff I personally wanted to see but never got the chance.

That's the down-side to doing that shit as a job. You can be ten fucking miles from some place you always wanted to see and not have the time to go look. I remember some people getting really into explaining some legendary place that was "very far away" with all manner of cool stories about it.

Turns out it would have been about two days through the bush, and yet there was no way for me to see it. Of course it was just a story, but that's not the point. I wanted to go, but I couldn't. When I'm better, I'll finally be able to do it.

I do want to point out that I've got a GPS-equipped Toughbook that was always with me in the DII. Didn't take it with me everywhere else, but if the DII could go somewhere without being shipped, I took it along and typically got some use out of it.

It's main purpose was to host the Faultmate, but I've certainly used it for more advanced data entry in regard to surveying and satellite imagery viewing; occasionally navigation, as well. It's just not right for fast, on the move navigation in adverse conditions. I mean, the computer will take a beating, but the physical interface just wasn't designed for that sort of thing.

For a while now, the Garmins have had all that capability, but that wasn't always the case, and obviously a laptop is more convenient when you're stationary, and a ruggedized touch-screen can be helpful. There was a time when I'd send off for actual prints of that imagery, and it was fucking expensive.

If you really think about it, it wasn't too long ago that you'd have a GPS and a series of physical prints. Now, it's a GPS and a laptop or tablet. Nothing wrong with replicating the capability in a more modern and useful manner. Some of us still roll with prints as a backup, but not everyone.

Hell, I've got a Nuvi 1300 stuck in my Infiniti, and I'll be the first to say that was the dawn of my hatred for alternative solutions. I don't even remember when I bought that one, but I picked it up at Circuit City, I believe. It'll be replaced with a Pioneer in-dash unit at some point in the near future, but it still has it's place when I buy small cars, and is still updated, strangely enough.

Not too long after those hit the market, the "alternatives" became the "onlys"; and there just wasn't a new option for those of us who needed the good shit.

Observe there's at least one person in here still using a damned 176, and I'll bet you ten bucks that if more of the old guard were still here, you'd have a pile of people still running 276, 378, and 478 units. From an industry perspective, they should all be thoroughly obsolete, and yet here we are, doing our best to find ways to keep them relevant.

There's a reason for that, and it ain't nostalgia. If a tablet worked as primary electronic navigation in those use cases, I'd be all over it. As it is, it's a supplement. I'd go for a MFD if anyone made them, and I did try to use a gaming MFD LCD bezel for flight sims with some custom software a while back, but it was a stupid idea.

If there really was such a product made properly with a remote data entry dial and direct porting to a proper antenna unit, it might be a great thing; and could be used for all manner of tasks. There isn't, though. That's too much for too few people.

The best we're going to get is the 276CX, unless someone like Raytheon finally loses the rest of their mind.

The closest thing I've seen to someone trying out an MFD in that environment is a combination of that new, funny-looking Alpine receiver and the sPod switch panels; which are apparently pretty nice. I wish they'd just geek out and wrap an LCD, but they haven't.

If you've never seen one, they're easy to look up in cockpits, but just imagine an ATM or fuel pump. They use simple MFDs, in which the selections are on the screens next to hardware buttons on the bezels. Add something like an iDrive or Microsoft Surface knob (hell, yank out a quality mouse wheel) for quick data entry without looking, and you've got something interesting.

So, basically I just suggested the creation of a ruggedized infotainment system... Fuck me. :rofl:

Cheers,

Kennith
 

kennith

Well-known member
Apr 22, 2004
9,581
15
North Carolina
So far it seems to be working great.

Garmin's Basecamp software is still annoying, but that's got nothing to do with this unit.

I'm still not quite used to the larger screen, but it will happen.

Locks are fast and precise, navigation is quick (if we're honest, the previous units were a little too slow in road navigation, at times), it'll finally hold everything you'd ever want, and there are many, many settings to play with.

I'd still rather have the old text input method, but I haven't checked yet to see if it can be altered. As it sits, though, it's obviously still quite usable in rough environments; just not blind like the old way.

The new screen protectors they offer are very nice, anti-reflective, and idiot-proof during installation, and I've enjoyed the polymer, snap-on face cover much more than the old foam units that tended to fall off.

As for the battery, I don't have the Automotive power adapter, as for some reason they think (as usual) that an anti-slip dash mount is acceptable, but as in the past you can just pull the accessories apart and make them work with a RAM mount.

So, I've been operating exclusively on battery power, with everything cranked to the max (almost everything that could increase battery drain can be disabled for long treks on foot, but I've been trying to drain it to see how long it would hold up), as I'd just rather pick up the adapter than get too much more creative.

It lasts a very, VERY long time. It would easily handle a 300 mile drive without a recharge using the power saver settings, but I don't think that's overly relevant for vehicular use, as we'd all end up buying an adapter, anyway.

The solution they include is impressive, featuring a built-in speaker in the mount, but I don't see anyone here actually using that. As noted, though, the accessories can still be taken apart to create a more conventional mount compatible with any standard solutions, which is what I've done every time in the past before I had a chance to hard mount them.

I'll do a dash pod soon, but for now it's working fine. :applause:

For those who appreciate such devices, it's a damned good value.

Cheers,

Kennith