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Have Garmin got their act together yet?


Premier Member
My Zumo 550 is on its very last legs and will have to be replaced with something newer. I've been reading some really disheartening reviews of the 395 and 595 and for the money they're asking ... well, tell 'em they're dreaming.
I don't need all the fancy Pandora/Spotify and fancy routing* and my bike already has TPMS -so just an easy to read map, phone connectivity and an onboard mp3 that will BT to my Sena in a reasonable semblance of stereo would make me happy. Unfortunately the reviews tell me the 395 has terrible, terrible audio and the 595 screen isn't anywhere near as bright as the old 550. And the speed readout and such are hard to read. Honestly, who makes a bigger screen and then shrinks the needed fields? Or puts shitty audio with a good screen and vice versa?
Have Garmin fixed these issues? Or have the children with coloured pencils and degrees in marketing still got the engineers locked in a cupboard?

I NEED a new GPS. Buying yet another secondhand 550 isn't an option and I've already replaced the touchscreen in one to no avail. I don't want to spend 30 tanks of fuel on something that I'll only have to send back ... with a wordy, pithy letter of complaint.

Somebody please tell me that the reviewers are wrong and its safe to buy one of these grossly overpriced waterproof boxes.

* If I'm not careful choosing between shortest and fastest, the 550 will already send me where I don't expect to go.

Grey Gentry

Premier Member
My Zumo sends me places I don't need to go, sometimes. Yes shortest/fastest is the issue.
I can loan you a 395 for a trial to test the audio.

Speed readout is bigger on the data screen, where my Zumo sits most of the time.


Well-Known Member
I too am interested in a new GPS. My particular issue is that I'd like to be able to load Hema off-road maps into said GPS.


Not Right Rider
Premier Member
My Zumo 550 is on its very last legs . . .

* If I'm not careful choosing between shortest and fastest, the 550 will already send me where I don't expect to go.
Yes my 550 has been on it's last 'leg' for some time now too. It adds some excitement when I'm not paying close attention and end up somewhere where I don't want to go.


Premier Member
I use a 390 and have for years. There is no doubt it has short comings but I find it particularly effective when used in conjunction with Basecamp. That doesn’t allow you to wing it of course. I find setting up route preferences as much as you can helps minimise a bad route. I like my gps to be water proof which kind of limits the choices.
Russ I suppose you have had a look at the Hema HX-1, a little large perhaps and needs a water proof bag but has a great off road map set along with everything else.


Premier Member
Mine has reached the stage where the screen does a dance of random highlights and won't respond to touch - which is why we replaced the touchpad in the last one - and after a while it asks if I want to save the route. One day I might, and then follow it. Probably find Skidoo and Kimmie at the other end. :D


Well-Known Member
Daisy I've come from the old 550 to the 595, which I've had for almost a year now.
Still have the old 550 as a back-up (bit I doubt I will ever go back to it).
The 595 is very good, but as you raised, the screen brightness can be an issue, especially in direct sunlight with a bright colour in front of it (eg a map in the tank bag). I may play with making a small shade cover for the unit.
The updated maps come with terrain mapping, which can also hinder clarity a bit.
Small negatives however for what is a very good unit.
None of the simplicity of MapSource of course, so it has taught me to get better and better at Base Camp - that's a positive.
The speed readout you mention, along with all the numbers on screen, are always clear for me, and the great part of that is that you can re-arrange the trip data and readouts to be in any pattern and position you prefer.
When linked to your phone app it can also give weather readouts for points along your route and at the destination, display your messages and reminders and so on.
There are still things it does that I have yet to master, or even discover... but so far so good.
Once you get a grasp of the 595, it does make the old 550 seem a little too simple and somewhat limited.
Good luck!


Premier Member
Thanks Nico. The 550 finally died today, while I was looking for an unfamiliar turn - or more accurately, one that looks a lot like the one in a a different town - so it is in the box with the last one that died.
I will probably never use basecamp, mostly because my computer is neither from windoze nor the glowing fruit company. I don't use phone apps and location services are turned off.. Don't have an 'account' with any of the data harvesters. I do however, have a very nice tinfoil hat.
I actually liked the simpleness of the 550, especially when it was wired to the autocom. Once I went to the Sena though, the mono music was a problem. We've ordered a 595.