All systems go
Maureen Shelley and Jennifer Dudley- Nicholson point you in the right direction
GARMIN NUVI 3760 Garmin, $ 449; garmin. com. au
★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ■
It’s a relatively high price to pay for a modern personal navigation device, but this one works quickly and accurately. It also looks slick with a flat glass screen and an almost iphone- like design. All the usual features are on board, including voice prompts, street- name announcement, full touchscreen, photo- viewing capability, preloaded points of interest and multiple route options including options to avoid tolls, drive the shortest distance or take the fastest route. It weighs just 112g and offers a 4.3- inch canvas to show off preloaded maps of Australia and New Zealand.
TOMTOM GO LIVE 825 Tomtom, $ 349 tomtom. com
★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ■
Drivers who prefer to see roads on the big screen ( and not just the windscreen) should appreciate this Tomtom navigator with a whopping 5- inch display. The bigger brother of the Go Live 800, it offers many of the same features, including lane guidance, spoken street names, a Bluetooth connection and voice controls to make phone calls. Importantly, it also features a built- in SIM card and a one- year subscription to Tomtom’s HD Traffic service that alerts drivers if they’re about to drive into a trouble spot. The 244g device also arrives with its mount affixed, for easy installation and removal, and maps of Australia.
GARMIN NUVI 40 Garmin, $ 169; garmin. com. au
★ ★ ★ ★ ■
This more cost- efficient navigator offers simplicity. It has two options ‘‘ Where To?’’ and ‘‘ View Map’’. Compared to its more expensive stablemate, the 40 is slower to access satellites, uses different directions and is slower to refresh. However, you can navigate straight out of the box with its preloaded Australian maps, it has a 4.3- inch touchscreen, more than five million points of interest come preloaded and it announces street names. It also has a built- in speed limit indicator. While basic, it’s a good option for the price- conscious.
LASER NAVIG8R T43B Laser, $ 199; navig8r. com. au
★ ★ ★ ★ ■
Developed in Australia for local driving conditions, the Navig8r has some nifty features including an electronic trip log. When you get in the car, you enter your odometer reading and purpose ( personal or business) and the Navig8r records the distance and time driving. This feature makes it perfect for commercial drivers or those wanting to claim travel on tax returns. The device also features voice and visual prompts of speed limits, its 2GB memory can be expanded with a memory card, Australian and New Zealand maps from Navteq, red- light camera warnings and it weighs just 142g.
NAVMAN EZY45 Navman, $ 155; navman. com. au
★ ★ ★ ★ ■
Another simple navigator that delivers value for money is Navman’s Ezy45. It has a 4.3- inch touchscreen and 2GB of internal flash memory to store maps. It arrives with three years of free map updates but users are well advised to back- up map data to a computer with each update or risk losing important points of interest. The Ezy45 offers turn by turn navigation with voice prompts and has 3D junction views and lane guidance. You can also find your nearest petrol station or parking garage among more than 600,000 points of interest. The interface is more complex than that of the Nuvi 40 but it also has more features.