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Old 09-14-2008, 08:48 AM   #1
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We are searching for a navigation system for our coach. After having a "hands free" Bluetooth system in my truck and being impressed on its ease of operation, I am interested in getting the same feature in the new navigation system. Has anyone seen a navigation system with a large screen (5" to 7")and the Bluetooth connection?
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Old 09-14-2008, 08:48 AM   #2
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We are searching for a navigation system for our coach. After having a "hands free" Bluetooth system in my truck and being impressed on its ease of operation, I am interested in getting the same feature in the new navigation system. Has anyone seen a navigation system with a large screen (5" to 7")and the Bluetooth connection?
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Old 09-14-2008, 04:35 PM   #3
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I think Garmin makes one with a large screen. I didn't buy it because it seemed a little large for the dash of my towd when I move it there, so I got a smaller Garmin. I think it might have been a Model 7200(?)
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Old 09-14-2008, 07:17 PM   #4
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For the same money that you'd spend on a Garmin 7200 you can buy a Kenwood 7120 and get the exact same Garmin software plus an excellent, high power AM/FM CD/DVD player. For the best Garmin 7200 price that I see on Amazon you add an Ipod connection or consider Sirius or XM radio, even another backup camera if you want.
Here is the url on Amazon:

http://www.amazon.com/Kenwood-DNX7120-Navigation-receiv...id=1221447887&sr=8-1

It is simple to install: Just take out the stock Jensen radio in the dash and replace it with the Kenwood (some slight cutting involved). It even comes with a remote.
I had a Garmin 7200 before and this has exactly the same software with an excellent high resolution screen for less money and many more features.


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Old 09-17-2008, 05:59 PM   #5
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Clark, thanks for the info on the Kenwood. It looks like the 7120 has every feature I'm looking for. However, I did see the new DNX8120 and it can do everything the 7120 can do, plus show how the engine is tuned! There are several videos on YouTube showing different capabilities. Sure it is large, but then again, it still is smaller than my 15" Toshiba with DeLorme that keeps sliding off the dash.
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Old 09-17-2008, 06:47 PM   #6
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You can also buy the Silverleaf software program and run it on your PC along with Microsoft Streets and Trips for your GPS program. Gary Arnold (on the Forum) did that and it seemed to work great. Many more parameters on the Silverleaf system - if you are interested.

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Old 09-18-2008, 03:51 AM   #7
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Try looking for a garmin GPS that utilizes the NEXRAD weather overlay, this will give you realtime weather radar as you drive. The subscrition is avalible from the service from Garmin ask for the Pilot Lite version you will be able to save some money. I utilize the Garmin for marine and automotive use. In ths coach we have a 7500 that has the dead reconning feature and a 476 for the toad

JIm and Kathy
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Old 09-19-2008, 09:06 PM   #8
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D&K:

There is system by Alpine (the stereo company) that has the full stereo, mp3/4, bluetooth, etc. and has a rechargeable, detachable GPS system that lasts a number of hours when detached from the head. Great for adventures in the toad. It's called the Blackbird Portable Navigation System. A guy at Best Buy showed it to me. Seems like about $1900-$2100. The portable part gets swallowed into the head unit that has the stereo, etc. It has a 6.5" screen.

Personally, I'm working backwards. I'm taking out my older (2003) Alpine Nav-system (too hard to use) and installing a newer Alpine system, iDA-X001 with everything except the navigation. It also has very large numbers for the time and fully integrates with any phone. Then buying the Android phone with GPS (similar to iPhone).

Apparently all the newer systems are foregoing CDs and CD-changers in favor of mp3/4 inputs like iPod or Sensei. Fortunately I've been adding all my CDs to a laptop computer base and now have about 8500 songs downloaded into my player. Much smaller, cheaper and saves time.
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Old 09-20-2008, 05:19 AM   #9
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I don't know how many bells & whistles you want on your navigation system. We use the Garmin 7500 Street Pilot. It's information and ease of use is incredible. Clarity of the 7" screen is great. We have attempted to confuse it by taking incorrect routes and it's corrections are extremely fast and accurate. We mounted it to a number of flexible knuckles and a 1/2" shaft that can be bent slightly to the underside of the passenger seat and then up to where my wife can adjust it accordingly. It doesn't play music or any of the other things mentioned.
We find it very satisfactory.
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Old 09-28-2008, 06:18 PM   #10
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Thanks to all! I have finally decided that I don't need all the bells ands whistles, just a good navigation system and a bluetooth interface for my cell phone. I have chosen the new Pioneer AVIC-500BT with a 6" touch screen. I had them pipe the audio portion through the stero speakers so the bluetooth and nav directions are easily understood. Updates are easily downloaded through the internet and installed through a SD card. Pioneer states that they provide approximately half of the navagation maps for all GPS manufacturers. The system displays 2D or 3D maps and accepts voice comands. It still plays CDs, MP3, and connects to the iPod. Sale price is between $375 to $650 and installs with a suction cup or a permanent mount. However, it will quickly detach for reinstallation to anouther mount in the toad.
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Old 10-08-2008, 11:19 AM   #11
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Here is an option to consider. After using a Garmin GPS unit for a number of years, I can no longer see the maps on the little screen well enough while I am driving (need reading glasses). Also, Garmin charges a fortune to update the mapping software with the latest info.

I purchased the Microsoft Streets and Trips with GPS antenna (plugs into USB port of the laptop) for only $80. The updated program is usually $30 or less at Sams Club for just the software each year or two. Then I put the laptop up on the dash with a couple of bungee cords and a small extension cord to the outlet near the sink for power.

Result is a nice big, bright screen on the laptop which I can actually see. The program talks to me with directions and turns which are also listed on the screen. It quickly reroutes me if I make a wrong turn. I can plan trips and save waypoints (they call them pushpins) right on the laptop before or during a trip. The search function for points of interest works great (much better and more extensive than Garmin). In fact I used to buy Streets and Trips every year and use it to find RV parks and such so that I could enter the info into my Garmin unit which never seemed to be able to find the places I wanted to go to.

I still use the Garmin unit in my car, since the laptop is too big to fit on the dash in the car.
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Old 10-08-2008, 12:59 PM   #12
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We use Microsoft Streets & Trips with the GPS antenna, too. To facilitate use, we had our RV "handyman", who happens to be an electrician, install an electrical outlet on the dash at the slope down toward the front window. It really makes it easy to have the laptop on the dash without having wires to trip on running elsewhere.

One thing I like is the ability to look at the bigger picture of where I'm headed or really zoom into the details along the way, and do it on a nice large screen. Old eyes need all the help they can get!
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