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June 29, 2009

How To Install Garmin's Map Update on a Nuvi 200

How To Install Garmin's Map Update on a Nuvi 200

One of the more common issues I see posted in the forum comes from Garmin nuvi 200 owners who discover that their entry-level nuvi doesn't have enough internal storage to hold the updated, larger, 2009 or 2010 map. Here's what you can do about it, and how to get the entire maps loaded on your nuvi 200:

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June 24, 2009

Garmin Issues Emergency Software Fix For Nasty Bug That Can Brick Your nuvi 7x5

Garmin nuvi firmware update version 3.60

Remember all those reports that Garmin nuvi 7x5's were mysteriously failing in mass numbers starting June 22nd? Well, it turns out that a botched firmware update is to blame. Worse, even if your nuvi 7x5 is still working fine, the update may have turned your beloved nuvi into a ticking time bomb just waiting to blow up and kill your GPS.

That's the bad news. The good news is Garmin has released a free software update that corrects the unusually nasty bug that can physically damage a nuvi 7x5, rendering the device unusable.

If your nuvi 7x5 still powers on, go grab this update immediately before your GPS dies on you. If your 7x5 won't even turn on any more, Garmin will replace your unit for free. Here's all the details on the update that'll fix your vulnerable nuvi 7x5, how to install it, and how to RMA a busted nuvi 7x5.

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Hands-On With Cobra's XRS 9960G GPS Radar Detector

Verdict: You, Sir, Are No Escort Passport 9500 or Beltronics GX65 (but you're still pretty good, and a whole lot cheaper)

Cobra XRS 9660G GPS Enabled Radar Detector

The XRS-9960G is Cobra's top-of-the-line radar detector, boasting 15 band radar/laser detection combined with GPS technology that alerts you to verified speed and red light camera locations, dangerous intersections, and reported speed trap locations for the United States and Canada. The unit also advertises increased detection range, and the best possible defense against new POP mode radar guns.

I spent a few days driving around with the XRS-9960G, and overall I found it to be a solid radar detector with good GPS functionality, and a good value. But it is outclassed by the more expensive units out there, and doesn't provide adequate false alert protection.

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June 23, 2009

Confirmed: Garmin's Updated Friction Mount Leaves Residue On The Dashboard

After testing Garmin's new, updating friction mount for a few days in warmer weather, I've been able to confirm what others have also been reporting: the new non-skid material leaves marks on the dashboard if it's left in the sun.

I guess it's back to the original friction mount for me...after a quick trip to buy some dash cleaner, that is.

Is A Recent Firmware Update Causing Garmin nuvi 7x5 Units to Fail?

Bricked Garmin nuvi 7x5 GPS unit

Early reports are starting to come in that a recent firmware update may be behind a sudden mass failing of Garmin nuvi 7x5 GPS units.

Starting June 22nd, some users have reported seeing a pop-up window that says an update is being installed. Then, the 7x5 GPS unit powers itself off, and can't be turned back on again. Ever. Ouch...

Update: Garmin reps have confirmed that a firmware error did indeed result in the "bricking" of many nuvi 7x5 GPS units. They say they're actively working the issue, and will post updates on their support site soon.

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June 20, 2009

Hands-On With Garmin's New, Updated Friction Mount

Garmin Portable Friction Mount (New Design)

I've long been a fan of using a friction mount instead of the windshield mount that ships with most GPS units. Unlike a windshield mount, friction mounts can be quickly moved from car to car, and taken off the dash when the car is parked.

Garmin has released a new friction mount that boasts an updated design and improved functionality. The entire base of the mount is now pliable, and can be bent to match the contour of your vehicle's dashboard.

Garmin is still selling the original friction mount, but this new one looks even better. I've been testing it out for the past few weeks, and the results might surprise you.

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June 19, 2009

How To Force A Garmin nuvi 8x5 To Avoid A Specific Road or Highway

Garmin nuvi 885T - Select Detour Road(s)

One of the most useful features unique to Garmin's nuvi 8x5 models is the ability to exclude a specific road or highway from the planned route. There are multiple scenarios when you might want to avoid a particular road. For example, if it's rush hour and you just know a certain highway is always problematic. Or if you find yourself stuck in road construction and want to find an entirely different route.

It's easy to do once you know how. This quick tip can save you hours of frustration later in the car - trust me. Here's how to do it:

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Garmin nuvi 1390T Review

Verdict: Great for City Folk

Garmin nuvi 1390T Review
nuvi 1390T Main Menu nuvi 1390T Map Screen Usage Modes


  • 25% thinner than previous nuvi models
  • Optional $9.99 (per city) cityXplorer maps offer enhanced pedestrian mode that lets you navigate city public transit
  • Unless you really care about pedestrian navigation, the nuvi 765T offers more features for less money

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