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Firoze Provides Nuvi 660 Comments


(Firoze and I exchanged emails a couple months ago as he was figuring out which GPS would best meet his needs. He ended up purchasing a Nuvi 660 and here are his comments after using it for a couple of weeks. In some places I’ve added my own comments in block/quote form. Thanks for the comments, Firoze!)

Based on our e-mails from late September, I purchased a Nuvi 660.

For what its worth; I thought I might give you a few thoughts from having used it extensively since September 30. I like the unit a lot.

On the positive side:

  • The big bright display
  • The ease of use
  • The graphical input interface
  • The new aerial views
  • The Bluetooth features
  • Portability

But more importantly there are a few negatives that Garmin could perhaps improve on. Does not have a time to turn (mm:SSS) counter on the display. This is a big omission. My wife, who uses her Garmin Streetpilot every day, will not upgrade to the Nuvi 660 because of that.

(You can get to this information on the ‘Next Turn’ page, however I agree some of it would be better served on the main navigation screen.)

Lacks the directional arrow that the Streetpilot shows to tell you which way the upcoming turn should be in. Not as big as the lack of ‘time to turn’ counter but is a helpful overlay feature. These items should be user configurable.

The MP3 player is cute but not a major selling feature. The downloads from Audible.com are expensive and you still need to use your laptop to complete the steps. One should be able to do it via the Bluetooth phone hookup.

(I’ve yet to use a GPS where the speaker quality was good enough to seriously listen to music through the internal speaker.)

The voice quality is not as good as the Streetpilot or the Quest 2, I have used both.

The Traffic feature has limited advantages with a lot of false positive readings; at least in the DC, MD, and VA area.

The Bluetooth works off you cell phone in reverse, when you call up a list of recently received or dialed calls the list is presented in reverse order that the phone would display them. The oldest on top and most recent on the bottom which forces you to have to scroll down the list to call the last dialed or received number.

I wonder if Garmin will address these issues in the next Nuvi that comes out? My wife will not give up her Streetpilot unless the replacement has the ‘time till turn’ feature. Which in urban/city driving is very useful. When you come to an intersection with two or three exits feeding off a single main branch she uses the time till turn to confirm which exist she should take.

17 Responses

  1. Greetigns:

    Do you recommend the Nuvi 660 for motorcycle use?
    It shows to not be water proof and I am concened if it gets wet

    Charlie - November 23rd, 2006
  2. Charlie, for motorcycle use I would suggest either the Garmin Zumo 550 or the TomRom RIDER both of which are designed specifically for motorcycle use.

    Tim - November 23rd, 2006
  3. What Street Pilot does your wife have or this feature in all street pilot models?

    Mark - December 2nd, 2006
  4. Ny wife uses a Street Pilot 2620.

    With regard to the NUVI an extremely very frustrating experience just cropped up (this week end), after about 75 days of use. I get a message that states, ‘Memory Full’. The only option is the hit the OK key.

    I called Garmin yesterday and they guy on the 800 number told me they were working on a fix for this and would have one out in a day or two.

    Well until them my NUVI has turned into an expensive hands free cell phone for my car. I cannot program any destinations either from the ‘Favorites’, ‘Recently Found’ or ‘Address’ buttons. You get the ‘Route Waypoint Memory Full’ screen and then the screen reverts to the topographical view status.

    The Garmin person on the 800 number told me a work around for this was to delete some of the saved addresses from the Favorites or Recently Found. This does not work. When you try this the unit either freezes up or reboots. Also I do not want to delete all my Favorites by doing a full reset and wipe he entire memory clean.

    This problem bug does in effect leaving you stranded as even the ‘Go Home’ button cannot make the NUVI to plot a course. It merely defaults to ‘Memory Full’ followed by reverting to the ready to topographical birdeye view screen.

    Also downloading Gamin’s latest 2.70 patch from http://www.Garmin.com does not fix the problem.

    Just as annoying is the fact, there is no mention of this on Garmin’s website. You would think they would put out some soothing calming words, bear with us we are working night & day to get the fix ready.

    It amazes me that a company that boasts of Aviation GPS would allow users to feel so abandoned. What if I were 3000 feet up the air, could I/should I trust a Garmin?

    Firoze - December 5th, 2006
  5. Most any pilot will answer that question with “no, you shouldn’t trust the GPS”. When dealing with something as critical as flying you always have multiple backup methods of navigation. As a private pilot myself I know you should always be prepared to use your backup navigation.

    If you are navigating “GPS direct” then I also always keep the closest VORs dialed in, keep track of my progress on a sectional chart, make sure my indicated heading matches what I’ve calculated based on winds aloft conditions and what I’ve measured on the charts, as well as watching for landmarks on the ground and matching them with the sectional charts.

    So no, I don’t trust my GPS while flying…. but that doesn’t have anything to do with the quality of the product (for the most part Garmin aviation devices are fantastic) rather just always having backup navigation plans in place.

    Tim - December 5th, 2006
  6. Hi,
    I recently bought a Nuvi 660 and I am also experiencing the “Memory Full” message. Even the option to wipe the memory clean has drawn a blank. I am out travelling in Southern Africa and i really need this thing to work. If any one has any ideas on how i can reset this thing i will really appreciate.

    Raphael - January 3rd, 2007
  7. Page 4 of the 660 User manual shows how to reset the Nuvi. Disconnect any power from the Nuvi. Flip up the antenna. Behind the antenna is a reset button, press it. Connect it to power again. The Nuvi should reboot.

    Tim - January 3rd, 2007
  8. Hi,
    Thanks for your comment Tim. I have reset the Nuvi using the reset button but that has not made any difference. I have even tried the hard reset that should clear all data but it just freezes and has to be rebooted.

    Raphael - January 4th, 2007
  9. Sounds like you should place a call to Garmin tech support.

    Tim - January 4th, 2007
  10. A call to tech support sorted out my “Memory Full” message. Just a pity that I lost all my data in the process. The manual says something about holding your finger on the bottom right of the screen but that didn’t work and tech support had me hold down the top left corner of the screen to get the Nuvi to reset.

    Raphael - January 4th, 2007
  11. I had the same problem. Read this entire post before you do this. The unit needs a hard reset. Unplug the unit from the charger and turn it off. With the screen facing you push in on the lower right hand coner of the screen and turn the unit on – keep pushing in on the screen until the screen asks if you want to to this. This will erase all favorite points, Bluetooth connections and maybe other stuff. My home and password still worked. I had to do this and got my info from the very helpful tech support guy at Garmin. He admitted there is a problem with no current fix. They hope to fix this soon with a software update but don’t know when.

    Charles - January 5th, 2007
  12. thank you charles. I had the same “memory full” problem and no one including the guy at tech support knew how to fix it. The procedure you outlined worked fine.

    greg - January 27th, 2007
  13. I have had the exact same problem with my Garmin 550, which is only 4 months old. I have also tried to delete some favorites and it will not let me. Extremely frustrating. I was hoping not to have to reset and lose everything, but I guess I will try.

    Dawn Mercurio - February 17th, 2007
  14. I too had this problem (2 months old). I noticed that before the problem occurred it seemed to lose the sattelites and asked me where I was (I had to confirm location and time zone, etc.) then it would not work after that. The reset mentioned above worked so off I go…

    Art - July 14th, 2007
  15. memory full problem with nuvi 660; sorted out as above. had only about 15 waypoints.

    bennie nell - September 20th, 2007
  16. I am wondering if anyone can highlight the differences between Garmin 660 and Megallen 4040? They seem to be in the same price range.

    John Zhu - November 18th, 2007
  17. John, you can compare those two here.

    Tim - November 18th, 2007

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