GEAR TEST // HEMA HX-1 NAV­I­GA­TOR

Australian Geographic Outdoor - - Gear Tests - RRP$699 www.hemamaps.com.au TESTED BY Dean Mel­lor

THE HEMA HX-1 Nav­i­ga­tor is the lat­est sat­nav re­ceiver from Hema Maps. Un­like many run-of-the-mill sat­navs, the HX-1 comes pre­loaded with Hema’s ex­cel­lent on- and off-road tour­ing maps, as well as a full com­ple­ment of to­po­graphic maps cov­er­ing all of Aus­tralia and New Zealand, so it keeps guid­ing you when the bitumen turns to gravel. ON-ROAD NAV­I­GA­TION On-road nav­i­ga­tion, called ‘Drive’ mode, is typ­i­cal of many ded­i­cated sat­nav de­vices. It of­fers full street map­ping for Aus­tralia and New Zealand, with easy to set des­ti­na­tions, voice guid­ance, traf­fic light and speed camera warn­ings. You can set your des­ti­na­tion by typ­ing in the ad­dress on a key­pad or via POIs (Points Of In­ter­est), which are listed un­der sub-cat­e­gories such as Ac­com­mo­da­tion, Auto Ser­vices, Emer­gency, En­ter­tain­ment, Camps and Lo­ca­tions, Car­a­van Parks, Med­i­cal and Petrol Sta­tions. Route op­tions can also be se­lected to avoid tolls or mo­tor­ways etc.

The ‘Drive’ mode screen dis­plays up­com­ing turns, cur­rent road name, speed, speed zones, es­ti­mated ar­rival time, dis­tance to des­ti­na­tion and more. There’s also a com­pre­hen­sive trip com­puter. Once your route has been cal­cu­lated, you can pre­view it prior to de­par­ture and check out any POIs along the way. You can then al­ter the route with De­tours and Al­ter­na­tives, and you can queue up nu­mer­ous des­ti­na­tions in one route by us­ing the Mul­ti­point Route fea­ture. OFF-ROAD NAV­I­GA­TION Off-road nav­i­ga­tion, or ‘Ex­plore’ mode, is what sets the HX-1 apart from tra­di­tional sat­navs. The main map in this mode is the Hema Explorer Map (1:150,000), which in­cludes more then 1.2 mil­lion kilo­me­tres of 4WD tracks and out­back roads. More de­tailed maps can be down­loaded via Wi-Fi, and there are ad­di­tional map sources in­clud­ing digi­tised Hema tour­ing maps, state gov­ern­ment to­po­graphic maps and HERE Street, Ter­rain and Satel­lite map­ping.

As all Hema maps have been phys­i­cally field checked, they of­fer more than 40,000 over­laid POIs, split into var­i­ous sub­cat­e­gories. Drill down to in­di­vid­ual POIs and you’ll find in­for­ma­tion such as co­or­di­nates, ad­dresses, phone num­bers, email ad­dresses, web­site de­tails and more. You can even over­lay weather radar in­for­ma­tion on the map to mon­i­tor con­di­tions as you’re trav­el­ling.

Route plan­ning is easy and can be done by ei­ther plot­ting po­si­tions on the map point-by-point or by us­ing the Quick Rout­ing tool, where the HX-1 cal­cu­lates the op­ti­mum route for you.

You can save tra­di­tional way­points when trav­el­ling and then eas­ily add notes, pho­tos or videos to them thanks to the HX-1’s camera. This al­lows you to re­call con­di­tions/fea­tures at a par­tic­u­lar way­point when re­view­ing the im­ages/footage. Recorded in­for­ma­tion can be stored ei­ther on the de­vice’s in­built stor­age or a Mi­croSD card, and can be man­u­ally trans­ferred to a com­puter via the sup­plied USB cable.

Recorded trip in­for­ma­tion (routes, way­points, pho­tos etc.) can be synced with your Hema Explorer Cloud ac­count via Wi-Fi. This can then be shared with friends, fam­ily and other Hema ex­plor­ers. Like­wise, you can view the trips recorded by other ex­plor­ers, and even down­load them as a route plan­ner for your own ad­ven­tures.

At 700 bucks, the Hema HX-1 Nav­i­ga­tor is good value for money, and it comes with 4WD map up­dates for the life of the unit as well as three years worth of street map up­dates.

The Hema HX-1 of­fers on- and off-road nav­i­ga­tion and Hema’s ex­cel­lent four-wheel drive tour­ing maps, topo maps and more.

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