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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
First Look
Garmin Montana 650t GPS


I bought the Garmin Montana 650t GPS from my local Can Am dealer that comes stock on the new 2012 Limited Commander. I also got the dash from the Limited Commander but that will be in later. The nice thing about this setup is it can be bolted right in replacing the stock dash with the Limited dash.

I have mixed thoughts on this Montana 650t GPS, it adds some great features but lacks in many basic features and it is loaded with bugs.

List price from Can Am is about $650 that comes with a mounting bracket.
List price from Garmin is $700 that does not come with the mounting bracket but you can buy the same bracket for $38.
So unless you find a good deal, the Can Am dealer is the way to go saving $88 if you end up getting the mounting bracket.

I have had the GPS for about 4 days and I have not got it out on the trail but I will give my review after I get out on the trail.
So here is what I have after 4 days.

Garmin Montana 650t GPS

Pros:
1. Fits right in the Commander with the Limited Commander Dash
2. Waterproof
3. Glove friendly with pressure sensitive screen
4. Large screen 4"
5. Can be used in either Landscape or portrait view
6. Can use either the included rechargeable battery or 3 AA batteries
7. Comes with base map and 100K Topo maps
8. Can use the new BirdsEye Satellite Imagery Subscription Maps ($30 per year)
9. Works with Google Earth to import tracks, routes, scanned maps or downloaded PDF maps. So making custom maps is no problem.
10. Removable to set things up in the house before your ride.
11. Good Satellite reception with internal antenna
12. Can be used on the Commander, motorcycle and boat as well as in your car if you buy the $80 City Navigator maps.
13. Looks good in bright sunlight and in the dark.
14. Can be updated using Windows 7, Vista, or XP, and Mac.
15. Can share your tracks, waypoints and routes wirelessly with other compatible Garmin GPS's
16. Has 5 MP camera (not sure if I really care about this)
17. They speak english at Tech Support. (Thank you Thank you!)

Cons:
1. Wile great in bright sunlight and dark, not good in low light.
2. No standard information when navigating like heading, speed, ETE, or pointer without exiting the map and going into Compass mode that does not show the map. (What was Garmin thinking?)
3. Exit out of 3D view does not work wile in Landscape mode, must turn the unit to Portrait mode to exit the 3D mode.
4. Info like time, date, battery life, and signal moves over icons when in Landscape mode and controls are set to right side.
5. Will not navigate around the city with included maps, just comes back with (Routes Calculation Error: Maps do not have routable roads in this area). Remember this is a top of the line unit for $650 to $700.
6. No traffic info at all and no way to add it
7. No XM radio and no way to add it. (What was Garmin thinking, this unit is for off-roading and that is the GPS you would want XM Sirius added to).
8. Tech support is not the brightest. ( I spent a couple hours of my life to prove to them the unit would not allow me to order the BirdsEye Satellite Imagery. You have to register a compatible GPS unit to order the $30 per year subscription and now after 4 days no email, call, text, and still not working. I was told I could not get a discount for my hours of beta testing there unit, oh wait I didn't want to beta test this thing I paid full price and waited till the bugs were worked out I thought. They told me to expect a email in 24 hours but didn't happen. I also had to tell them there direct phone number for tech support just hangs up after the recording, and I had to use the 800 number. You would just think they are closed by the way it gives the hours and then hangs up.)
9. When moving the map it adds a thumbtack when NOT wanted all the time and you have to return to current location to remove it. They really need to have a menu button or double tap to add a thumbtack. This is a bad design no matter how you look at it.
10. Setup menu is a mess, you have to look all over to find the setting you are looking for in a number of sub menus. They should have just one setup list and maybe one additional Advanced setup menu. Here is a example, the control location setting is in the Appearance menu.
11. No way to turn off things like Trees marking Parks and Buildings marking Schools. You can turn down the info to a lower level but I want other info but I could care less about every park.
12. BaseCamp program is very old school and controls are not user friendly. They should buy the BasCamp programers a new computer and maybe a iPhone and let them see how a user friendly program should work.

So like I said very mixed feeling on this GPS unit.

 

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Discussion Starter · #2 · (Edited)
Update on the Garmin Montana 650t GPS.

There was a update on the GPS and on Garmin's Servers. This has corrected most of the issues I had with the GPS. You can now get info like heading wile viewing the map, the only issue left is, and maybe it is just me or they may correct it soon. The map date can not be stored to the SD card. I put in a 32 gig class 10 SD card and there is no way to move it to that location becaues it comes up as a separate drive and the BaseCamp program that allows you to move info around on the GPS will not allow you to put any map to that card.

Here is a look at the Dash out a a 2012 Limited Commander and yes it will bolt right into any 2011 or 2012 Commander. The dash was $65 and can be used for a number of different installs.

Also a video looking a the GPS.


 

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Do your self a favor and get the lowrance baja

If I'm posting, its because I'm on the side of the trail waiting for you slow pokes to catch up...... ROTTLMAO
 

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Nice in-depth write up Bryan....it's greatly appreciated to have you share that here.....Lance
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Do your self a favor and get the lowrance baja

If I'm posting, its because I'm on the side of the trail waiting for you slow pokes to catch up...... ROTTLMAO
I was first looking at the Baja, but the data is getting on the out dated side as far as computer systems to program (like windows XP). Correct me if I am wrong but you can not use Window Vista, Window 7 or a Mac to do any programing. Not knocking the Baja, the display looks nice and simple to read but the BirdsEye Satellite Imagery on the Garmin is hard to beat.
Post some info on the Baja if you get a chance, I have the Garmin but I am sure others want the best and I really don't know what is better, just liking the simple bolt in dash and GPS display/info.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Update on the Garmin Montana 650t GPS.

There was a update on the GPS and on Garmin's Servers. This has corrected most of the issues I had with the GPS. You can now get info like heading wile viewing the map, the only issue left is, and maybe it is just me or they may correct it soon. The map date can not be stored to the SD card. I put in a 32 gig class 10 SD card and there is no way to move it to that location becaues it comes up as a separate drive and the BaseCamp program that allows you to move info around on the GPS will not allow you to put any map to that card.

Here is a look at the Dash out a a 2012 Limited Commander and yes it will bolt right into any 2011 or 2012 Commander. The dash was $65 and can be used for a number of different installs.

Also a video looking a the GPS.

2012 Can Am Commander Limited Dash - YouTube

Garmin Montana 650t review / BRP - YouTube
After getting out on the trail with the Garmin Montana 650t, I am very happy with it. Turned on the red bread crumb trail and it was easy to see when returning back on the same trail and cutting some corners. The size is a little small but I am good with it because you can take it with you and put it in your pocket.
One other update is with one of the many Garmin updates you can now store any data to the Micro SD card. Just a matter of drag and drop now. The one thing that may still be changing is the downloading of satellite images is limited to 230 MB per section but no limit overall. Just takes forever to cover a area at the highest setting. On my last outing we were able to find a perfect parking spot to unload the Commander and see what trails would meet with others even though there was nothing on the trail map. Very nice to have.

One other thing all Commanders are pre-wired for the GPS, just plug it into the power plug that has a white cover on it from Acc power. You could also use this wire for EPS (small square plug / white cover cap)
 

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One other thing all Commanders are pre-wired for the GPS, just plug it into the power plug that has a white cover on it from Acc power. You could also use this wire for EPS (small square plug / white cover cap)
Could you post a picture of the power plug that you plug the GPS into? Thanks.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Could you post a picture of the power plug that you plug the GPS into? Thanks.
I will see what I can get for you. But it is very easy. Just get the Limited dash, and the GPS from a Can Am Dealer and you will only need to move the switches, key, 12 Volt outlet over to the new dash. Then install the GPS in the dash and the cover over the Stereo side. The plug for the GPS is a square white plug with a cover that comes off and your GPS just plugs in.

I do have some video just have to see if I can get time to upload it the next couple of days.
 
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