Garmin zūmo 660 -
zūmo 660 GPS Review
by H.B.C. for webBikeWorld.com
Part 5: Garmin zūmo 660
The other sections of this multi-part review of the Garmin
zūmo 660 includes further insight into the tools
provided by the 660.
Part 6 also identifies some basic differences
between the 550 and the 660, lists some compatible
Bluetooth systems and provides the Bottom Line scoop on
the newest addition to the zūmo line.
following section provides further insight into the
individual tool categories.
This is probably the first or second stop
for new users. This sub-category lets the user begin to
customize the device by changing system, navigation,
display, time and language settings.
Map Settings are also accessed from
this point via the map detail, view, vehicle, trip log,
map info and restore options.
While hard-mount physical
security options might be limited, the zūmo 660 provides
two security settings that will help protect user data.
Garmin Lock allows a four digit PIN to be created and
stored in a security location, and Safe Mode, unless
turned off, disables all functions requiring "significant" operator attention that could be
distractions while in motion.
Restore will put security settings back to original
values, except for the PIN or its location.
FM Traffic Message Channel (TMC)
subscription information is accessed via "Tools
Settings Traffic" and the information displayed will
be based on the identified locale during initial setup. This feature allows Traffic Information mode to be
turned on or off, the Provider selected, search for
additional TMC providers and finally, Subscription.
The zūmo 660 receives FM Traffic Message Channel or
MSN Direct content depending on which (traffic) receiver
is used and which subscription is purchased. I haven't
yet activated either service yet. But I have used the TMC service as provided with the Garmin 265WT and it
proved to be a useful feature when traveling in and
through urban areas that provide the service, especially
along the I-81 and I-95 corridors.
The Garmin website identifies that the Premium
Traffic Subscription service for North America and other
parts of the world is provided by Clear Channel, whereas
other pages identify other providers for North America?
Settings Proximity Points
The Proximity Point
Settings feature is a valuable tool that requires some
interaction by the user and/or the downloading of
specific data, such as custom POIs, safety camera
databases or a TourGuide file.
Tools Settings System
GPS Simulator turns off
GPS mode and simulates navigation, in real time and
using archive/average movement data to provide a
realistic environment. Usage modes are: motorcycle,
scooter, automobile and pedestrian. Simulation mode is
very power efficient as well.
Units of measurement can be changed between metric
(km) or English (mi).
The keyboard layout options are QWERTY, ABCDE and
Large Mode. The final selection is "About" which
displays the software version number, unit ID and the
audio version for the unit. All of this is useful when
maintaining a functional baseline or when purchasing
Tools Settings Navigation
From here you can
select the desired preference to calculating a route
faster time, shorter distance and off-road, my personal favourite. The only thing to remember here is that the
system will sometimes calculate a Line-of-Sight routing
that could be hard to achieve, at least without flight
Tools Where Am I
While not a totally new feature,
the "Where Am I?" tool in its latest presentation form
is very easy to use and encapsulates information so
necessary in emergency situations, especially where
immediate assistance if needed and when first responders
may be involved.
This is a pretty impressive feature
that can prove to be an essential tool in some
circumstances. Users are presented with a category
listing, or the "Search" menu can be invoked. Either
way, it is a great tool.
Tools Media Player
The Media Player provides high
quality stereo audio via two 3.5mm outputs, one on the
chassis and another on the integrated harness, or via
the Bluetooth A2DP (stereo) capability. The updated
media player supports MP3 music files and M3U and M3U8
playlist files allowing playlists created on the zūmo or
downloaded from a computer to be used.
A continued feature sure to be appreciated by many is
the ability of the Media Player to play compatible
Audible Books available from a number of sources. A
bookmark can be created for any file as well allowing a
session to be resumed easily.
Another thing I really like - the shortcut icons that
show up on the right side of the screen when the Media
Player and/or Phone applications are active. A
musical-note icon represents the Media Player while a "P" icon indicates when a mobile phone is paired with
and hosted by the GPS.
Tools MSN Direct
Although a heavily touted
feature, according to the Garmin website, the MSN Direct
service will only be available until 1 January 2012 or
for just over two more years. A subscription can still
be made to receive the service and it seems that
subscribers will get some additional free service time
given the published expiry date.
Tools Picture Viewer
Part of the Media Player
bundle, the Picture Viewer let users view JPEG and JPG
files stored in the 660 or removable media. A slide show
can be activated as well and stopped at any time by
touching the screen.
Tools Custom Routes
This tool is accessed from
either "Where To" or "Tools". The menu table basically
walks you through the creation of a new custom route
that can be saved off and retrieved for use or editing.
T he options in editing a route are: change name (route),
add or remove points, manually reorder points, optimally
(automatically) reorder points, recalculate (by route
preference faster, shorter, off-road) and, delete.
Changes are automatically saved upon exiting any route
Tools My Data
This tool manages "Set Home
Location", "Import Data", "Manage Trip Logs" and "Delete Favourites". To manage data save, import and delete,
this is the tool to use.
Routes from MapSource can be imported to the device
by touching "Import Route from File". If connected to a
PC, the default settings will allow a quick and direct
import of the file.
Tools My Data Manage Trip Logs
Trip Logs, recorded during navigation, is done under the
"My Data" tool. It is amazing how many users are not
aware that this type of information is captured and
stored. This is unfortunate as the information stored
can be invaluable in tracing or re-tracing a route,
documenting a trip or activity and in providing an audit
trail of sorts.
Trip logs can be saved (archived), retrieved for
viewing, re-use or edited. The service also allows any
or all segments of a specific trip to be viewed, great
for refreshing the memory or planning a re-ride over favourite ground.
When viewed, the archived trip log is presented as a
distinctive coloured line on the map display. Other
capture data, such as elevation, can be viewed, also by
segment if desired. Trip logs can be deleted by using
the "Edit" and "Clear Log" selections. And finally, trip
logs can be shared by simply using the "Share" and "Export" selections to save the trip log to the
removable memory media.
Tools World Clock
After not having this feature
available on the 550, I can now check out current times
for cities around the world by selecting a specific
city. Selecting the "World Map" feature brings up a flat
projection visual that depicts the time zones and the
light to dark transitions based on the selected time
Tools Language Guide
The Language Guide is a
personal favourite for "time well spent" breaks. It
keeps the mental translator refreshed for those
situations where a timely and correct phrase can mean
everything. The Garmin Language Guide provides five
bilingual dictionaries -- English, Spanish, German,
French and Italian. The tool provides To/From look-up of
Words and Phrases and bilingual dictionaries for the
When the tool is selected, an information screen will
be presented which states that, this is a sample
version of the Garmin Language Guide and directs the
user to visit the Garmin website.
A simple tool, but always
appreciated. After a long day on the road, the brain
doesn't always crunch as fast or as accurately as
desired, so the calculator is a great verification tool.
Tools Unit Converter
This tool converts: area,
currency, distance, speed, temperature, volume and
weight. Having worked in both a metric and English
standards environment all my life, I don't even think
about most conversions any more, it just happens.
For referral purposes however, especially for other
than speed, weight or measurement, this is another great
tool to have directly at hand. Converting To/From is
Tools Unit Converter - Update Conversion Rates
Although part of the "Unit Converter" tool, this routine
is interactive and allows the traveler to update
currency conversion rates manually so that resultant
currency calculations are based on current listings.
This is applicable only if the package includes a TMC traffic receiver. If so, a
variety of advertisements and coupons will be presented
for your viewing and use as applicable. Just remember
do not, under any circumstances, try to access or write
down while performing the critical task -- maintaining
control of the machine.
zūmo 660 Product Specifications
Size 136 x 83.4 x 24mm (5.35 x 3.28 x 0.94 in) W x
H x D.
Weight 270g (6.17oz).
Display 4.3in diagonal touch-screen, 480 x 272 pixels,
WQVGA TFT landscape display, white backlight.
Case Waterproof to IPx7 (immersion in one metre of
water for 30 minutes).
Operating Temperature from -20C to 60C (-4F to 140F).
Charging Temperature from 0C to 45C (0F to 113F).
Data Storage internal memory is a nominal 4GB (actual
available memory is based on system memory space
requirements), removable micro-SD media (not included)
allows storage space to be expanded. Data is stored
Computer Interface USB mass storage, plug n play.
Headphone jack Standard 3.5mm.
Charge Time Approximately four hours.
Power Input DC vehicle power using included automotive
power cable and cradle, motorcycle mount with integrated
DC harness. Power can also be supplied by optional USB
charger or trickle-charged from compatible USB 2 ports.
Usage - 10W max.
Battery Life three to seven (3 to 7) hours, depending
on usage and settings.
Battery Type Removable lithium-ion battery, 3.5V,
GPS Receiver High-sensitivity.
Acquisition Times Warm <1 sec, Cold <38 sec, Factory
Reset <45 sec, times based on clear view of the sky.
Review: Garmin zūmo 660
Product Review Details and Owner Comments in
Part 1: Introduction
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