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661 of 689 people found the following review helpful
on April 8, 2011
If you have been a longtime Magellan user you may want to consider a few things before getting on the Garmin bandwagon. I want to make it very clear that this isn't going to be a review to bash the Garmin 1450LMT, the particular unit I bought and returned, but more of comparison. Let's start off by getting what Magellan users have known from the very beginning about Magellan's issues out of the way. Magellan has always had poor customer service, terrible POI information, slow or old maps/updates, and subpar quality control issues both hardware and software, and not Mac compatible. Garmin is better in this respect, most of the time. If this is what you are concerned about, stop reading here and purchase a Garmin you will be very happy. The Garmin 1450LMT is solid and reliable, and Garmin customer service and tech support is top-notch. I'm saving the issue of routing errors or confusing routing until later because I have experienced routing errors on Garmin as well and they were just as frustrating as some people claim about Magellan.

With that said, being the owner of the Magellan 760, 2200T, and 3225. I have never had an issue with the hardware or software in any of the models I have owned. I have known a few people that have, but I personally have not. This may be due to the fact I never leave my GPS in the car, never throw it around, abuse it, or leave it exposed on the dash in a parked vehicle. I wouldn't say I "baby" the units, but I respect it as a complex electronic device and a potential item for thieves, so I never leave it in the car or glove box. Of course, this may just be coincidence, I'm sure there are just defective units out there whether you take care of them or not. I figure I will buy a Square Trade warranty to cover the unit in case it dies on me.

As I had fore mentioned, I purchased a Garmin 1450LMT due to so many negative reviews about the Magellan units, particularly the 5045LM. They ranged from bad maps, sticky glue residue, screen lock up, bad routing, you name it! I had the Garmin 1450LMT for 30 days, returning it the last day only after several frustrating routing failures in Las Vegas. Yes believe it or not, the Garmin had some routing issues, contrary to all the positive reviews. I actually switched back to the Magellan 2200T because of this mid vacation. In addition to the routing issue with the Garmin, I didn't like the overall Garmin user interface (UI), the routing logic, and the overall navigational style it uses. Not that they were bad, it just wasn't for me and my style of driving. There was also one occasion that the car icon, was in the middle of the map and not tracking properly. This never corrected itself until I reset the unit. It seemed like the Garmin was not able to track the satellites correctly. This is now the second time I had a Garmin and went back to a Magellan both times.

Here are the main differences of the Garmin operating system (OS) and what I prefer about the Magellan OS. You can see a clear evolution of the 2 operating systems from their earlier models such as the Garmin 350 and the Magellan 2200T. Both models retain nearly all of the traits of their respective predecessors and not really changing much to the core operations. Let's start!

THE "DING DING" - Magellan gives a "ding" or a "chime" when you need to make a turn. Garmin does not.

Garmin has no "bell" or "ding" when instructions are given. As Magellan users know, when instructions are given on the Magellan there is a "ding ding" when it is the final move of the instruction. So when you need to turn at a certain point, the instruction will be given, followed by a DING DING. Seems insignificant right? But you might miss this feature more than you think. I found myself looking at the Garmin after a turn because I was never sure if that was the "turn" I was supposed to make. Garmin only gives you a final verbal queue to turn by saying "TURN LEFT (street name)".

"ROUTE CHOICES" - Magellan gives 4 different route choices; "fastest time, shortest distance, most use and least use of freeways". Garmin has 2 choices (thanks roegs for the info) fastest time and shortest distance with no freeway exclusion offerings.

Garmin has 2 route choices of fastest time, and shortest distance but does not have "most use of freeways and least use of freeways". Magellan has had these from the beginning dating back to the Magellan 700. Garmin has a setting that avoids things like HIGHWAYS, TOLL ROADS and such; however, these are settings NOT pre-route choices. I don't always want to avoid highways, but there are times that I do. Why should I have this as a permanent setting? My parents or my wife who prefer to avoid highways if possible, always use the route choice of LEAST USE OF FREEWAYS. In this case you can have the Garmin setting to avoid highways permanently, but my parents won't be able to remember how to get to it on the settings menu or change it if they need to. Neither will my wife.

"WHEN POSSIBLE MAKE A (IL)LEGAL U TURN" - Magellan wants you to go back to the original route. Garmin recalculates the entire route after missed turns.

Garmin and Magellan approach to routing differs in respect to recalculating routes and U turns. I don't know if this is true 100% of the time, but this is what I have been able to observe in the 30days I had the Garmin. If I miss a maneuver on the Garmin, it will recalculate the entire route depending what direction you are heading AFTER your miss turn. If I get back on the route it initially wanted me to take, it may NOT recalculate to the originally planned route, even though I corrected myself. Magellan's tendency, on the other hand will, for a short time, want you to follow its initial route. This is why, I believe, some experience the incessant "when possible make a legal U-TURN" command. When I use my GPS, I never second guess the route. I always follow it no matter if it's out of the way or not. This is because I probably am in a city or a part of town I am unfamiliar with. If I miss a turn, exit, or what have you, I PREFER to go back to my original route. Garmin's tendency is to guide you on a different route without making you turn back. For example, Garmin calculated a perfect route for me back from Summerlin to the Aria hotel in Vegas. (I read the route before driving). I missed the entrance to CR-215 (no lane assist popped up). It recalculated quickly, BUT I turned around to get on CR-215 hoping it would take that same route back. Guess what. After it recalculated, it did NOT take me that same way back. Instead it took me down crowded Las Vegas Blvd (LVB). The other route DID NOT have me go down LVB, how do I get that route back? I asked. Why can't I exclude LVB from my route? Did the Garmin get me back accurately, sure it did. But why did it have to change my entire route because I missed one turn. Magellan would have either told you to make a legal U turn OR keep as much of the initial route unchanged as possible eventually guiding you back to the original intended route. This may have been an exception to Garmin's overall navigational logic, but, I didn't prefer it. This happened to me on more than a few instances where it would recalculate new routes for me over and over again, causing me to do U-turns anyways. Others may have different experiences with this, but again, this is what I noticed and I don't prefer it over Magellan's routing logic.

"ROUTE EXCLUSIONS" - Dont want to go a particular street or highway? Remove it from your route. Garmin? No such function.

Magellan always had the ability to give you a route and letting the user easily remove a certain street on the maneuvers list. If I didn't want to take a left on MAIN Street, for example, I can touch that maneuver, and it will ask me if I want to remove it. Afterwards it will recalculate a new route completely removing that particular street or use that street as little as possible. Again Magellan has always had this feature, and Garmin has never had it. To my knowledge it still doesn't. Is this useful? You bet. I would rather take the back way around Las Vegas than go down Las Vegas BLVD itself.

**UPDATE**: There is one software glitch I discovered. To enable route exclusions, U-Turns must be enabled, otherwise the software (version 3.11, basemap v41) can no longer calculate routes effectively. The unit will not lock up per se, but it will keep saying "ROUTE ERROR: Can not calculate route. destination is in a restricted area or select another another route method" or something to that effect. To get it back, enable U-turns, and turn your unit off and turn it back on. It will work normally again. The only reason I found out is I was experimenting with the options, otherwise I would have never known. Hopefully Magellan puts out a patch for this. And NO, I am not returning my 5045.
Incidently, I also have the Magellan 5120LMTX, sold exlusively at a local warehouse club. It is the exact same as the 5045 unit with BaseMap v41 (Tele-Atlas) and software version 4.53 works flawlessly with U-turns disabled. No weird routing issues either.

"REPETITIVE VOICE INSTRUCTIONS" - Instructions given at 2 mile, 1 mile, 1/2 mile, approaching, then ding ding.

Magellan reminds you of upcoming maneuvers over and over. It will usually remind you of upcoming maneuvers at 2miles, 1mile, 0.5miles, Approaching, and then DING DING. Garmin usually will tell you at 1mile or less, and then say in "500ft make a left", then turn left for example, with no ding as mentioned before. This is good for some, but for me, it made me check the screen too often for my liking. I like being constantly reminded of upcoming maneuvers verbally. This is irritating and unnecessary for some, but for me this is how I like driving especially on vacation and in unfamiliar areas. Yes, I'm the guy in the right lane ready to exit 2 miles away behind a slow truck because I don't want to cut over 4 lanes within a mile of the exit.

"PLEASE DRIVE TO THE HIGHLIGHTED ROUTE" - Magellan will start the routing process as soon as you are on any street. Garmin, not so much.

While waiting for the valet to get my car, I would turn on the Garmin and have it calculate a route before I drive off. I noticed that if I do not "drive to the highlighted route" it would not recalculate based on where I am. I would have to be on the "highlighted" route first then it would start routing. Now I can't say for sure that this is always the case, but it happened to me a number of times enough for me to notice. The Magellan, on the other hand, will start routing you the moment you get on a street, regardless of what the initial route is. So if the route started on left and I turn right, the Magellan would start recalculating based on that. The Garmin would not. I know for a fact this happened with the Garmin on a few occasions. There are just some streets coming out of parking lots you CAN NOT make a right or left on forcing you to turn opposite of the initial route the Garmin may pick for you. To make matters worse, I didn't know how to manually force a recalculation on the Garmin without cancelling the trip and restarting it. On the Magellan, you can do this by bringing up the maneuvers list then hit options on the bottom and pick your new route by pressing your choice Fastest route, Shortest distance, etc. etc. Simple!

**Update**- I am now convinced Garmin will not route unless your are on the initial path it tells you. I tried this with a Garmin 1390T. Driving out of a parking garage I ended up on another street different from it's intended route, Garmin would not start routing. To make matters worse, it would not let me recalculate the route because the car was moving.

"ZIPCODE and PREVIOUS CITY" - Magellan can use zip codes, and previous cities you have entered. Garmin makes you re-enter the city every time.

Garmin doesn't use zip codes for address entry, nor will it let you pick the previous city you entered before. In fact, on the Garmin you will have to type in the city EVERY TIME you enter a new address. Magellan is still capable of both options for city entry.

"LANE ASSIST" - Magellan lane assist pops up frequently, takes only a portion of the screen, and stays up longer.

In my experience, the Garmin lane assist window hardly pops up. The Magellan pops up more often. On I-90/I-294 in Chicago, the Garmin lane assist popped up maybe twice, while on the same trip the Magellan popped up about 4 times. Very useful feature in both, I just thought it would come up more often in the Garmin. It never popped up on the Garmin at all in Vegas as far as I can remember. Another noteworthy difference is that Magellans lane assist signs/renderings will pop up on the screen while you can still see your regular navigation as it continues. Garmin will show the lane assist rendering (a graphical depiction of the highway and highway sign and arrow) and your regular navigation screen will be hidden from view. This is probably why the Garmin lane assist doesnt remain on the screen quite as long as Magellans or pop up nearly as often.

"ROUTE SIMULATION" - Garmin has it, Magellan does not.

Garmin has a nice feature called Route simulation; it previews the route before you go on it as if you were actually driving it. However, it's in real time. You cannot speed this up at all. If you want to preview a particular turn you have to watch and wait until it comes up on the simulation. What if the turn is 200miles away, at 65miles/hour simulated, do the math. The Magellan has no simulation; instead, you can preview that section of the maneuvers list by simply touching it. It will show you how it looks on the map. This is a relatively new feature in the Magellan as far as I know.

"Map Updates Please" - Garmin has it more often, Magellan maybe once a year or less.

Garmin has Magellan beat on this. They seem to come out with map updates more often and are supposedly more accurate. They are more up-to-date, for sure. They have streets newly built already on their map, while Magellan lags behind. But I have experienced routing inaccuracies on Garmin despite this. So it's not 100% perfect either even with better maps. As far as the Tele-Atlas vs. Navteq issue, I can't say for sure right now. I have Base MAP 41 (Tele-Atlas) haven't noticed any "crazy" routing issues yet. I'm not quick to blame any GPS for not picking an optimal route either whether it's Garmin or Magellan. If I know a better route, why am I using my GPS?

"Whats New?"

There are some newly added features that the Magellan 5045LM has, like One-Touch, however, these new added features I can actually do without. In fact, I turn off a lot of the extra features. I do not use the auto zoom in/out view, the 3d view (prefer 2d like the old 760), night mode, and traffic updates.

5 inch high resolution touch screen: The new 5 inch screen looks very nice, high resolution, and pretty responsive. Not as responsive as the Garmin. The are times you must press twice or harder to get it to register. It also lacks swiping ability, like the Garmin has. But I think the overall colors and graphics are better on the Magellan.

Quick Reroute Calculation: This is the quickest re-route in any of my previous Magellan models. It also just recalculates the route without saying "recalculating route", it just recalculates it automatically after you miss the turn,or exit etc. I will actually say the recalculation is faster than Garmin's. It seems many times recalculation happens almost instantly, while Garmin's will give you a percent until complete.

One-Touch: Assignable bookmarks for your favorite destination. Assign it, hit it once, and it starts the route to FASTEST TIME.

More complete POI - I wouldnt expect it to have up to date information. Garmin's POI is more up to date, but still has some errors. Google addresses on your smart phone is a more reliable choice. This is a GPS not a phonebook.

Lane Assist - The signs that are shown in lane assist are a little small as far as the words go. I can barely see them without my glasses because the unit is farther away from me on the dash of the SUV. Of course if you have better near sighted vision or my sunglasses were prescription they would be more than adequate. Despite that, they are helpful and pop up more often than Garmin's lane assist. It will even show exits. Plus they do not cover up your normal navigation.

Auto-Zoom View: Can't comment, I dont use it.

3d View: I dont use the 3d view, but it's not as good as Garmins 3d view. The 2D view is better on Magellans, in my opinion. This is the view I use.

Other than that there's really nothing dramatically new. What is missing in the newer Magellan's is that the street you are currently on is no longer present. In the old versions, the name of the street you are currently on shows at the top of the screen while the next street to turn on is on the bottom. I miss this feature. Also the voice is a bit more tinny and robotic sounding now more so than its previous versions, and there is no way to change the voice either.

"In Conclusion"

Ultimately the features that I mentioned above that differ between the two GPSs are the reasons I went back to Magellan. I know Magellan has its problems, but it's been like that for a while. Heck, my Magellan 5045LM even had the sticky adhesive issue that a couple people have mentioned, (cleaned off with GOO-GONE in 5 minutes, worked great). Again, the Garmin 1450LMT is a great GPS, and most people like it. They have awesome customer service, the website works nice, and the software update is easy. Understandably it seems like the majority of people like the Garmin, but the Garmin just wasn't for me. I'm so used to Magellan's software nuances, verbal commands and UI so much so I find it hard to adjust to Garmin, and I won't even try TOMTOM. In addition that I've had good luck with the hardware, so I see no reason why I should switch. I think if you are in the market for your first GPS or had Garmin in the past, I would definitely stick with Garmin. But if you've had Magellan for a while, I definitely think about it before making the switch.

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556 of 589 people found the following review helpful
on October 27, 2010
I had really high hopes for this GPS. I shopped for quite awhile and owned a Garmin that was due to be updated but decided to replace the unit rather than pay to upgrade. After reading a lot of reviews of the Garmins with quality control issues I opted to give Magellan a try. I have owned the unit around 2 months. I took a trip from Indianapolis to Santa Fe, NM and used the unit the entire time. Last weekend I drove from Indy to Chicago and back again. I guess I have used it about 3000 miles and here is my impression.

First the bad points:
1. The unit will power down occasionally. It has happened to me 4 times so far.

2. The spoken directions ie.."Turn right" are crystal clear. The problem is when it says the street names. The street names are muffled. Usually I can understand what it says but other times I have to look at the screen to figure out what street it is talking about.

3. I put in a route to take me home from a casino near Chicago. It said there were roads that were closed in my route. A road closed icon even came up on the screen. I thought OK it will just route me around the closed road. Well I got up to where I could see the barricades and it told me to turn on the road it knew was closed. I went on past the closed road of course and it recalculated a different route it took a lot longer to go that way. It would have been quicker to go back the way I came in which would have been back tracking a little bit but the unit was not smart enough to realize this.

4. I was almost home the other night and knew what exit I needed to take on I-65. It was telling me to go 1.3 miles further then take that exit. I didn't even think there was an exit 1.3 miles further on the interstate so I took the exit that I knew was right and I checked when I got home and there wasn't another exit for around 10 miles. This makes me wonder how often it sends me on a wild goose chase in areas that I am not familiar with. Ignorance is bliss I guess.

5. Sometimes the auto zoom will zoom out so far it looks like a satellite view. And to top it off this happens when you are in a really congested areas where you really need a lot of detail. It happened to me once in Oklahoma City and Chicago.

6. When typing on the keyboard the unit pauses and hangs up causing you to have to press the same key a several times before it registers. This makes entering an address frustrating and time consuming.

7. Adds show up on the screen while you are driving. I understand that the Garmin adds only show up when you are stopped. I didn't find the traffic alerts helpful. It has an icon on the screen that turns red when there is trouble ahead. Instead of just automatically rerouting you it requires you to click on the icon and then it will give you alternate routes. You select the one you want and then it will take you on your new route. You have to do this while barreling down the interstate at 75mph. Kind of defeats the purpose if I kill myself in the process. I just wished it knew which route was the least congested and route you to that one automatically.

The only good point for me is the screen is big and easy to read.

I am going on another trip next week. I am going to take it to Las Vegas and drive to Tucson, AZ then to San Diego and then up to LA then back to Vegas. If it performs any better I will update my review.

All of the other reviews were so positive but I am really disappointed in it's performance. Perhaps the others just haven't used it as extensively as I have. I am probably going to replace it with a Garmin. Even my old Garmin is light years ahead of this unit.

Update 11-16-10
Just got back from another long trip. I had my mother along and she is around 70 years old and not very tech savvy. By the end of the trip she was making fun of the GPS unit wondering how bad it was going to screw up every time I turned it on. This unit is not able to do basic routing about half of the time. I don't understand all of the positive reviews. The phrase I hear in my sleep at night is "When possible make a legal U turn." because that is what it says more often than anything else. I wish I could return to Amazon but its been too long. Save your money and buy something else. You have been warned.
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405 of 432 people found the following review helpful
on July 13, 2010
I previously had a Magellan Maestro from 2006 but it recently was stolen. I loved the unit and wanted to replace it. When I found this RoadMate for under $200, I thought I would give it a try. I have several observations:
1. 2010 maps provide a lot better navigation experience than the old ones from 2006.
2. RoadMate has a comparatively huge display that is very appealing
3. RoadMate does not support voice command, while Maestro did/does. However, I was never able to train the voice command system to consistently accept my voice commands. Not only do I not miss this feature, I somewhat prefer not having voice command, obviating any temptation to use it.
4. RoadMate traffic alerts work well, especially since unlimited usage is included at no charge, ever. A small triangle display shows a red border when an incident exists en route or near. There is no audible announcement. One must tap the icon to see a summary. Often but far from always, at least one alternative route will be offered. Simply tap the appropriate "detour" icon to change to that alternative route. One must tap the "Report" button from the summary screen to see a map indicating all incidents. That is slightly tedious, but I cannot think of a more efficient way to do it. The major downside is that sometimes I have run into traffic jams that were not reported. I don't think I can legitimately blame the unit for that. Overall I find the traffic feature useful and intuitive.
5. This unit gives audio directions along with the visual. The audio is much less verbose than the Maestro, and therefore I find it greatly improved. It also is a lot smarter about calculating routes. Older maps often routed me circuitously. This unit almost always chooses sensible routes.
6. Use the auto-expand feature to better select the proper lanes through an intersection, turn, or other situation, such as a freeway split. This is a big improvement over the older models.
7. Overall, navigation is greatly improved. The timing of audio cues is much more appropriate. For example, the chimes indicating a turn come only after passing the last possible wrong turn. Still, they keep up. For example, I have made three quick freeway ramp changes, one after another, and the lane directions were still in time to be followed.
8. Magellan and AAA data bases for "points of Interest" are separate and often must be queried separately to find all "hits". This is only a slight inconvenience, noticeable mostly when using "Search by Name". The "one touch" feature is nice, but actually I have little use of it. If you have many many addresses, it could be very useful. I also like the address book having a lot of new features where a lot of information can be entered. All good stuff.

Overall, I rate this an excellent unit at the price point of under $200. I would purchase it again preferentially over the $350 Maestro. Then again, I don't use voice command.
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207 of 219 people found the following review helpful
on November 10, 2010
Initially, I was pleased with my 5045 LM. Little quirks here and there that differed from my Garmins and from the GPS on my Android phone. Biggest thing at first was its unreliability in displaying traffic notices.

This is my 6th GPS, in three different vehicles, and I have been using GPS's on the road and on the trail for about 6 years. I am well versed in their operation. But this last weekend my happiness with this Magellan was changed. Major POIs (Point of interests) like three different state parks in South Carolina are not even listed in its POI database. It also sent me down the wrong direction on a long mountain road that had no exit.

Today, the last straw. It froze. The voice still worked and the addresses in memory were still there, but it would not fixate a position and the cursor stayed in position even though I was traveling 65 mph. The MPH on the display also remained at zero and the direction heading showed West when I was traveling due East. I tried every button on the utilities menu to reset. I reset to defaults 5-6 times without success. I came home and hooked it up to my computer and Magellan content manager, (what a piece of crud software) but nothing would work. When I unplugged from the car it did not give option to switch to battery , it just stayed on.

Finally, after changing and manually entering a new GPS location three different times, it finally seems to start working again. I can't imagine this happening while on a road trip like I was 3 days ago. What would one do on an unfamiliar highway at 2 am on a long road trip especially if you were relying on the GPS to safely get you and your family where you wanted to go? I can no longer trust it to perform correctly or consistently. I will always bring a backup.

Now I read the fine print.. If I send it in for warranty, at Magellan's digression, they can replace it with a reconditioned unit. When I went to buy this, a new GPS was a bit more expensive than a reconditioned unit. I did not want to get a reconditioned unit and spent more money for a new one. Thus I buy a new one, it breaks and it appears I will end up with a reconditioned unit. If I wanted a reconditioned unit, I would have bought a reconditioned unit. They only offer 90 day warranty on reconditioned units and a year on new units. If the company cannot stand behind a reconditioned unit, why should you accept less if you purchased a new unit? I consider this an expensive life lesson.

I rarely express my advice against a product because everyone has different expectations and a product that does not work for me may be great for you. But when it comes to a GPS we all want the same results: reliability, accuracy and trust as no one wants to get stuck in a far away town or highway, with family in the car, and not know which way to go or where to turn.

I advise that you turn away from Magellan and buy from a company that offers good support and products. I cannot, in good conscience, recommend this unit to anyone who wants to put their family's well being and lives in jeopardy just to save a few bucks. Buy a different unit from a different company.
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38 of 38 people found the following review helpful
on October 8, 2010
I've used garmin for the past 6-7 years and when i lost mine, I replaced it with this. To be honest, i was attracted about the fact that this magellan decvice is bigger (5 inch screen) and supported/ endorsed by AAA services.

let me start with cons:

1. very small "GO" button after entering where you want to go. and you have to press it 2x: first time you press it it shows bigger go button (but still about inch diameter) considering the screen size is 5 inches diagonally, these Go buttons are really puny looking. It is not easy to press the Go button while driving. but who uses the GPS while driving nowadays ;)
2. after pressing the "go" button, garmin would show percentage of the map loading which tells me it is working. but this one, after pressing the Go button, it seems to just lag, just because it
does not show the percentage go up like the garmin. I get impatient and sometime press it multiple times, even wondering if the touchscreen is being sluggish or not working at all.
3. i don't want to say this is a con but the menu system is a little different from garmin and would take some time to get used to.
4. lifetime traffic report and suggestions on alternate routes are great but... i really think sometimes the alternate routes are not reasonable and sometimes even takes longer for you to get to the destination than your original route. If i know the road well, I would usually go with my initial directions instead of suggested route to avoid traffic. This system is somewhat useful but i think the technology isn't really perfected yet.

1. the lines and the map seem easier to look at than the garmin. it is simplified. I like the arrow instead of the 3d ugly toy car look that dangles in the middle.
2. turn by turn speech seems more accurate (than garmin) and it does seem to tell me whether to stay on specific lane accurately before changing to different highway.
3. bigger than usual screen
4. using usb plug for power - i can sometimes charge my phone too. I suppose many gps's nowadays come like this
5. the included suction cup and holder seems to stay better than the garmin - garmin used to fall off from the windshield quite easily.

Update 1 - after 1 month of usage

all pros and cons still remain the same for the most part
some extra information :

1. when there's upcoming splitting highways, the screen will show big 2 squares, or 3 depending on the number of the highways shown, the rectangular boxes get in the way and i cannot see the map behind them. check one of the product photos and you'll see what I mean. This sometimes makes it hard for me to see exactly how the road ahead will be (so that I can prepare to make lane changes if necessary)

2. the speech volume is loud and clear and has better sounding mechanism than the garmin. I'm not sure what the other reviewer is talking about but this one sounds well enunciated and very clear.

3. i like the street address entering system where it helps you to get the correct spelling of the city/ street names by making only the correctly spelled words appear.

4. i leave the sounds off but when you have to make turns, it does make "ding" sound at fairly right timing so that you won't miss the turn or 2nd guess yourself. (garmin seemed always too late. by the time garmin told me to go, i'd pass the road already)

will update more as I find more stuff about it

5. the garmin i had showed all the information at once by switching to a different screen (trip details: avg speed, stopped time, moving time, time to destination, distance left etc)

on this unit, you get to choose what you want to look at on the lower left corner. you click it once and it has drop up menu where you can select the item you want to see. but not all at the same time - you only get to see 1 thing at a time. I find this a con. I'd rather see everything really quickly and press back to the map. having to click more than once to see what I want to see is annoying, while driving especially... in my opinion.

I'd recommend this to other people with decent price. 150 seems ok. but not cheap.

UPdate January 2011

- magellan's update made the device definitely better. There was a new road near where I live going towards the freeway but the road still does not show on the "latest updated map" maybe I'm expecting too much? I would re-post once they actually show this newly built road.
- i still think the stupid go button is too small and not very responsive (or it doesn't respond as fast as I would like it to)
- after checking detailed report on traffic, there's no 1 step to go back to the main map screen. This is epic fail because u'd have to press the back button 2-3 times to get to the main screen again. I know that i'm not supposed to use the device while driving but this does get annoying while driving.

Update January 2012

this device failed on me 2x (screen frozen up at random locations and would not change even if you reset)
after a software update from their website (done early January 2012) everything seemed to be normal.
The traffic calculation seems to be faster but will have to check on that.

If you bought this device, please software update. things seem smooth and not lock up anymore. Will update this review if it does crash/lock up again.
Overall decent experience so far.
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54 of 57 people found the following review helpful
on July 21, 2010
I purchased this item because I wanted the live traffic and also the step by step directions. The step by step directions is handy in that you can review the turns and directions in order that you can determine howthe GPS is navigating you.

I have been very happy with this product in that it seems to be right on with traffic delays and arrival time. However, there is one major annoying feature that I absolute dislike. The GPS has advertisement that shows up that you cannot get rid of. I guess that's how Magellen pays for the free traffic by selling advertisement. After a while you become use to it, but I rather not have it and I wish there was a way to turn it off.

Another issue that I have experienced is that in areas of tall buildings once in a while, like downtown LA, the GPS seems to get lost due to lost signal.

But in all, I have been very happy with it and it seems very accurate.
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60 of 64 people found the following review helpful
on October 29, 2010
The GPS sent us in circles. I called Magellan and they told me some models had a software glitch. They tod me not to reorder this model until they worked out the problem. Amazon refunded all my money. These GPS cause too many problems. I'll go to map quest when need and print out diretions. Map quest has only gotten me lost 1 time in about 10 years.
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30 of 30 people found the following review helpful
VINE VOICEon October 30, 2010
Edition: Lifetime MapsVine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
So this is a midrange gps navigator that has a large (thankfully non-reflective) display, it has a good response time, and is encased in a somewhat cheap case.

The Good

It tells you which side of the road your destination is (unlike TomTom which shows you a tiny arrow if you have a magnifying glass).

The voice and the bell right before a turn are amazing, not annoying and the bell grabs your attention at the exact right time. Perfect.

Turns on instantly.

One Touch menu is just brilliant. One screen that has all your favorites etc.

Has unique hidden features like if you slow down too much on a freeway, it assumes you are stuck in traffic and calculates alternate routes.

The Bad

It wants to route me through the streets with the most stop signs for some reason? It's extremely stubborn about the routes it pics and will nag you to take u-turns or anything to get you back where it wants to route you initially regardless if it's the quickest path or not. It's as good as how well it routes. That is its primary purpose and it does a mediocre job.

It always overestimates the arrival time.

Doesn't display speed limits (if it's based on navteq maps so it should have that data).

When you don't have a destination in, it tells you what road you are on. Well, I know what road I'm on I would like to see what the next road I'm crossing is (Garmin does this).

When you look for gas stations along the way, it doesn't tell you which direction they are, just the distance. Great, there is a gas station 4 miles away but I have no way to tell if that is behind me...

Can't update maps with a Mac. Normally I don't have a problem with this as I would just avoid it, but nowhere on the Amazon page does it mention this. Another reviewer mentions this and it seems like fans of this navigator are attacking him... Now according to Apple, ~20% of new computers in the US are Macs, why would Magellan ignore that market share. I have Macs, many variants of Linux and other OSs but not a single Windows machine and I'm not going to get one just for this navigator. Both TomTom and Garmin support Macs. (my star rating does not take Mac compatibility into account)

If your region has no traffic data you get a constant red x in the display. And if you are in an area that has traffic, you have to manually intervene to reroute making it more dangerous.

Possibly a bug: if you go to map options and then click on map view, you will permanently go to different 2D modes and the only way to get back to 3D mode is to restore default settings.


The ultimate test: Would I replace it with the same model if it gets lost?

No. For this price range (while not that expensive), I expect a more polished product (actually for any price).

EDIT (Feb 2011): I contacted Amazon and told them about the Microsoft Windows requirement and they have since changed the description to include this.
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35 of 37 people found the following review helpful
on November 21, 2010
I purchase 2 new Magellan Roadmate within last 4 months prior to this model Roadmate 5045LM,satisfy with the cheaper Roadmate 1424 4.3 inch screen basic,however reliable. Was happy with Magellan,so i sold it and move up to better and larger model Roadmate 3045LM with Lifetime map 4.7 inch didn't really have chance to use it on long trip,but little time i have it has no problems. Then i saw Roadmate 5045LM Lifetime map with yet larger 5 inch screen,now that's what i really wanted so i sold my 3045LM. To my disappointment the 5045LM was inaccurate and not reliable mainly when routing so therefore i could no longer rely on it with confidence to take me on the most efficient route,fortunately my wife just purchase a new Garmin Nuvi 1450 which we use side by side on this trip. The Garmin have no problems other than lose signal one time doing the 4,000 miles trip. We were in Florida heading north from Miami decided to take the toll road turn pike home,the Garmin told us to turn right but the Magellan told us to go straight approx. 224 miles before we will reach the turn pike entry,obviously the Magellan was wrong,because when we follow the Nuvi 1450 shortly after we turn right approx. 10 to 15 miles we tap into turn pike entry and this is just one incident i remember. I just read that some user said that Magellan has switch over to TeleAtlas map in Oct 2010 and that perhaps the factor contributing to this nonsense routing,i didn't check the software map version whether it was 3.9 NavTeq map or 4.1 the TeleAtlas map version before i return it back to Amazon. The other problem i notice is that screen fades out under direct sunlight where the nuvi 1450 was readable. I am happy that Amazon gave me back full refund and i will buy from them again. I may buy Magellan down the future if they ever fix that problem,other than that i will stay with Garmin for now which i have 4 of them one for each member of the family. Hope this information help you.

Update 11/24/2010 Warning!!!
Just got off phone with Magellan tech. support asking him what happen to people who bought the early production Roadmate 5045LM with the Navteq map and will they still continue to get Lifetime map update? The answer is yes,however it will be converted to TeleAtlas map next time you updated to 2011 map. I was considering finding an early made 5045LM or other sister model Roadmate with Navteq map,now i'm not so sure i want to do that now,unless i decide to buy a non-Lifetime map unit with Navteq map and have no plans ever to update, then it would be ok.
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23 of 23 people found the following review helpful
Edition: Lifetime MapsVine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )

UPDATED March 2013
I was using this new Magellan every day for four weeks back in 2010 when I first got it and then sporadically for several years because I needed it less frequently EXCEPT to get around heavy traffic. I frequently used it with another Garvin for comparison. I use it on familiar roads and new. I have no serious complaints, but have noticed trade-offs, especially at this price point. I gave it four stars instead of five only because I measure against an IDEAL feature set. The performance is just fine. Remember that these units, especially as the feature set grows richer, are sensitive to environmental conditions. The better the signal, the more you get. When the system changes or corrects a route it appears to completely reload the maps and directionals which takes a few seconds longer. This delay may make you miss your optimal turn but it resets all traffic parameters to your advantage. People may blame the unit for the wrong reasons.

If you are a Mac user, know that the pre-paid (never imagine free really is) Lifetime Updates must be downloaded for the first time to your Mac. The support magellangps website under support provides step by step first time instructions for downloading the current zip map file to your mac transferring it to the micro card and then moving the microcard to the gps for setup and update. This inexpensive 2GB Sandisk MicroSD Memory Card might be suitable if needed. After the first Micro SD card update, future updates use the unit's USB. I figure at least one update per year on Magellan RoadMate is a good advantage, although first use is unnecessarily cumbersome. Note too that the Magellan website lists AN0203SWXXX Magellan AN0203SWXXX eXplorist USB Cable and AN0210SWXXX Accessory Power DC Charger for Magellan RoadMate 3030LM , 5045-LM and More GPS Devices as the proper accessories for this Navigator (I hate losing cables and embed the (cheapest) replacement links here.

- This model, the 5045, has North American maps. The 2013 website appears to suggest that the unit now supports European maps so long as you up load from the states. You may want to check it out further before purchase. The website lists an 800 number for technical support. My take is that Magellan appears to have made significant upgrades since my original review.

- No speed limit vs. actual speed display as on the Garmin.
-The screen's recommended travel lanes are harder to read and follow than the Garmin so at several junctures I have or have nearly missed my turnoff. It does however, speedily readjust the route.
- The windshield mount handles the power cord in a clumsy fashion. A good jolt can send it out of its cradle.

That is all that bothered me. There is controversy over their move to the Tele Atlas system. There is a notable difference. It may be a deal breaker for you especially if you have spent the last decade using the old one. You may not care. I cared less after four weeks. By the way, it took three outings before my Magellan was correctly oriented. We were also having some heavy weather. I did call customer service. They stood behind the unit stating that if it did not work properly the next outing, they would exchange for a new one.

_ LIFETIME MAPS (or for as long as Magellan continues to supports the product)
- As we got acquainted on the roads, I really like the bigger screen, about a third larger than the previous standard. Bigger has limits. But this is a nice size.
- The AVOID TRAFFIC feature worked well. In the Dallas/Ft Worth, Phoenix AZ and LA areas where traffic congestion comes quickly and lasts for long periods. The AVOID TRAFFIC is a really nice time saving feature in high congestion areas and I imagine, calming for those who experience road rage. The preference settings for road choice and others also work well.
- AAA I use AAA and the live link is useful when I want it to be.
- Compared to my Garmin, it sometimes made superior routing choices when it did not agree. Inferior choices were not memorable.

As this market matures, the range of choices makes selection difficult for those who really depend on their GPS. If you are, read everything and try to sort out the really subjective noise. Whether you are a frequent or casual user, I think you will be pleased with the 5045, especially at this price point.
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