Originally Posted by richyrich
Great tips, thanks - now I am narrowing down on Garmin Etrex which I can use for walking and car navigation (for the 49 weeks of year I am not boating) . There is a waterproof colour monitor (visible in sunlight) version called Vista C which is "WAAS enabled" claiming 3 metre accuracy in Europe + base maps for Europe-wide driving - motorways, A roads etc. Has anyone had one of these and can comment on quality? For about £275 it seems a bit pricy, but are you getting what you pay for, and with accurate route-finding by car in UK and Europe a real add-on benefit? Only other thing with Etrex, will I have to buy software on top for boating?
I got one of these as a back up to my 188c fixed set. The screen is indeed small and I agree with the comments about visibility at speed if bouncing around. That said, it's a good bit of kit and if you want something for walking as well it's pretty well ideal. For marine use you'll need to get a bluechart atlantic cd and unlock code for one region (not a problem for me as I already had it - but not cheap!) and download it to the Vista C (which will take all the charts you can unlock if you go for the English Channel, including tides and port data).
For road use it does work after a fashion, but the basemap is very restricted and you can't use it to get door to door as it comes out of the box. Be careful if you buy more detailed road maps as not all will provide what you're looking for. I know someone who bought the metroguide europe cd, only to find it was too detailed for the navigation to work properly!!
If you do try this, you'll also find yourself redownloading your marine charts every time you want to take it out on the boat.