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Garmin Nuvi 1240 review | Walk & Bike navigation

Published on: Monday, September 7th 2009                   Written by: Wim de Lange - Photography by: Mark Peters

Garmin Nuvi 1240 test drive

Garmin Nuvi 1240 test drive

Monitor resolution & Monitor sharpness

The Garmin Nuvi 1240 is not considered large, yet the monitor measures 9 cm, which is still larger than my Garmin GPSmap 60, which has served me fine so far. The screen resolution of 320x240 pixels is generally sharp. When it comes to the Photo album, I would like more sharpness, although this also depends on the picture quality. When entering text, the smaller screen proves to be a disadvantage. Consequentially, the touch buttons are also smaller, which means you have to aim well with your finger. Also, if we want to check a road map, the devices with larger screens are clearly in favor, but for these, you do pay a few extra bucks. For me, the size of the LCD is not a problem.

Garmin Nuvi review

Garmin Nuvi review

Garmin Nuvi 1240 touchscreen monitor

It is quite common to equip car navigation systems with a touchscreen monitor, and the Garmin Nuvi 1240 is no different. This monitor serves well in most areas. There is little pressure needed to activate the applications. However, I do have some remarks. As I wrote earlier, the keyboard buttons are rather small, although that might also be a matter of getting used to. The main trouble I encountered was when I tried to drag a map across the screen with a sliding movement of my finger. Sometimes, it seemed as if the map was attached to an elastic strap, shooting back to its old spot time and again. And on other occasions, a Go-to point was created unintentionally, which is really hard to undo. Garmin could really do better than that.

 

Garmin GPS navigation device

Garmin GPS navigation device

Garmin navigation system

Garmin navigation system

 

Walk & Bike Navigation in one

Walk & Bike Navigation in one

NĂ¼vi navigation while cycling

The device is not only intended for use inside the car. Via a menu, we can specify to be using the Garmin Nuvi as a cyclist or as pedestrian. We should however realize that a car map is built-in, displaying neither bicycle tracks nor footpaths. Yet, we do get some indication of the expected travel time. When travelling by car, it depends on the roads we take, by bike approximately 9.3 miles per hour are counted with, whilst a walker can walk about 3.1 miles in one hour according to Garmin. Using the Nuvi 1240 on the bike, we do come across a problem. How to attach the device? There is no bike mount available and during our cycling tour, we also have to beware of rain, as the Nuvi 1240 is not waterproof.

Garmin Nuvi 1240 test

Garmin Nuvi 1240 test

CityXplorer city guides for ramblers

When walking, it is not a problem that the Nuvi 1240 is not waterproof. Thanks to its small size, the device can easily and safely be kept inside the pocket. A new product has recently been introduced to walkers; the CityXplorer city guides. For a small fee, you can download a package for several big cities. The new models, 1240, 1340, and 1490T will then provide navigation options for footpaths in conjunction with information about public transport. A disadvantage when using the Garmin Nuvi 1240 outdoors, however, is the annoying reflection of the monitor, even when the backlight is at full force. A pity, especially because the new software offers interesting usability.

 
 
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