Select chapter: 

Garmin Colorado 300 review | Antenna & Battery

Published on: Friday, November 7th 2008                   Written by: Wim de Lange - Photography by: Mark Peters

Garmin Colorado battery compartment

Garmin Colorado battery compartment

Garmin Colorado works on AA-batteries

Garmin Colorado works on AA-batteries

 

Garmin GPS receiver

Garmin GPS receiver

Garmin Colorado 300 battery compartment

This brings me to the battery compartment. It is found on the back of the GPS device and can be accessed by turning over the catch and sliding away the back cover. This is not done all that easily. Perhaps the batteries I used, Hama Digital 2700, were slightly larger than other batteries, although this is not the entire cause. I think the reason is sliding over the rubber ring that offers quite some resistance. Of course, the rubber ring is needed in order to ensure the Colorado's waterproof feature; however, it could have also been reached with the construction of the GPSMAP 60.

Garmin GPS navigation

Garmin GPS navigation

Batteries for the Garmin Colorado 300

Perhaps Garmin could include a set of 4 AA batteries with battery charger in the box. The user has to purchase these anyway, and if they come in the package, Garmin has control over the specifications. The device takes average penlights too, although this should be done only as the last resort because of the costs. I don't have much confidence in the way the Colorado back is locked; a small plastic cube that is kept in place by a small, metal spring. I had to use quite a bit of power to open and close it, which makes me think it will wear out sooner rather than later. The plastic cube has to slide over a metal edge which is made of a harder material.

 

SD memory

SD memory

SD memory card slot

Near the battery compartment, the SD card slot is found. This is a two-way improvement compared to the GPSMAP 60. The larger SD card is easier to handle and to swap cards, we no longer have to fiddle below the battery compartment. Moreover, the SD card slot is also protected from water getting in by a rubber ring.

External antenna

External antenna

USB connection

Finally, the top of the device shows a shrunken antenna, the on/off button and a rubber cover hiding the connections for a USB cable and an external antenna. The USB connection is used not only for connecting to a PC, but also to connect to the car adapter to get its power for car navigation.

GPS signal

GPS signal

Accuracy of the antenna

Even though the antenna is smaller dimension-wise; that doesn’t necessarily mean its performance has to suffer. In order to measure correctly, the antenna alone is not sufficient, the way the device handles signal errors also plays a big role. I was able to compare three generations of Garmin handhelds.

 

GPS Accuracy

A ccuracy is found in the red circles. The devices were in my not all that spacious backyard positioned in between the houses, without the horizon being visible. The mutual differences were correct for this situation; however, in other circumstances I saw some surprising results. During my daily walk, I carried the Colorado in one hand and the GPSMAP60 CSx in the other. I visited different spots in my hometown and came to the following grivations.

Garmin Colorado 300 review

 

Situation

Park, under the trees :
Open space :
In the city, “average” street :
In de city, narrow alley :

Colorado 300

6 mtr
3 - 4 mtr
7 mtr
18 - 25 mtr

Conclusion

A 2 -2 final score, where I ex-pected the Colorado to do better with its 2 year newer technique, in particular in the city.

GPSMAP 60 CSx

7 mtr
2 - 3 mtr
8 mtr
15 - 21 mtr

 
 
login
email address email address