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Frequently Asked Questions About Satellite Navigation Devices Sent to This Site.

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Questions and answers that have been sent to this site by it's visitors, you may find them helpful! There's a newer pager of more Sat Nav Questions Too!

Q. Do you have any idea why none of the vehicle-specific OEM satnavs fitted to the likes of Saab, Jaguar, Audi, Mercedes et al don't have speed camera databases (and worse, don't provide any way of adding them as downloaded POIs)?  Surely the manufacturers are missing a trick on database subscriptions?

A. It's a question of connectivity - until cars get internet connections, everything has to be done by disc, which is impractical for speed camera files, which need to be updated regularly. I guess.


A. I can't find any references to dedicated Smart to Go Devices, just as software for phones and pda's. You'll have to consult the dealer you bought it off.


Q. I am on holiday and using a Garmin nuvi, which has worked well since leaving London. A couple of days ago I received a mesage "Lost satellite". Since then I cannot get the unit to work and the only message which I see is "Acquiring Satellites" - this meaage anver goes away - how can I get this working again?

A. You need to reset the unit, the button may be on the bottom or back (under the aerial if its got one). Then it should be ok. If not, do a system reset - do a Google Search for the model of unit and system reset.


Q. First of all thanks for a great site!
I purchased my nuvi 250w from Amazon UK in April and it came preloaded with UK Ireland and Europe.
I am in Thailand at the moment and purchased the City Navigator Thailand Data Card. This was done through Garmin's agents here ERSI (Thailand).Ltd
The unlocking and installing of the card was done by them.                                        Everything worked fine and I could still use the device to refer to UK.
However I now keep getting the following message when I first switch on the device, “Can't unlock maps" and have to press OK to continue and everything is OK for Thailand' but the unit does not seem to have any reference to the UK/Europe mapping even with the SD card removed. Have I lost the UK info?
Can you help? All the best Graham.

A. It's a problem with a corrupt map unlock file - but you need to contact Garmin fro some expert advice on how to solve it.


Q. Hi have just bought a nuvi 760 after researching sat navs.I am a complete technophobe and am having trouble using the route planner. can any one give me a complete step by step guide how to do it pleaseeeeeeeeeee.

A. Here it is: (from the Nuvi 760 Instruction manual)

Q. Hi Can someone please tell me why my tomtom makes random bonging noises?

A. Your problem probably is that your TomTom is set up to warn you about Points of Interest (POI) like petrol stations or Cash Points, when it should only be warning you about Speed Cameras. The next time you're using it (or set up a demo route) check to see which POI it is "bonging" about, then go into the settings, select that POI and disable the warning. Check your user manual for exactly how to do this.


Q. I'm looking for a satnav that offers UK and Europe maps, speed camera database, and Traffic updates, and preferably without having to pay extra subscriptions. I don't need non-navigational extras like camera (Navman), Mp3 player or picture viewer (various!) or Bluetooth. I'm doubtful about TomTom because of the extra subs costs. I've looked at spec for Navman F20/30 +T1 module, and Nuvi 250 (but can that do multi-stage journeys?). But what do you think of the ViaMichelin X-970T, which at present is my front-runner? Brian S.

A. I haven't had a go with the Michelin, so can't offer an opinion, but you can check out these Amazon reviews. The Nuvi 250 doesn't offer Traffic information, but remember that you can get free Traffic information if you go for one of the new TomTom One Traffic packages (they come with subscription free TMC aerials) The TomTom ONE Europe Traffic Edition or The TomTom ONE XL Europe Traffic. Both have speed-cameras, don't bother with unecessary features, and are excellent navigation devices. Don't bother with the Navman.


Q. Is there a sat nav with an option to plan a route towing a caravan?

A. Great question. At the moment there isn't, as far as I know, a Sat Nav that can plan routes while taking into account things like low bridges, but on TomToms and Garmins you can specify "avoidances" eg avoid unpaved roads, u-turns, ferrys, etc. TomTom have the best route planning previews and also allow to you to block certain parts of your route in advance, and the new Go Range have even more advanced route planning options. I would suggest taking a look at this caravaning forum, and in particular this thread, and maybe posting your question there.


Q. I am on holiday in New Zealand for a month early next year. What is the best Sat. Nav. to buy to use over there and be good in UK on my return. Do i have to buy separate maps and if so how much? Sandy.

A. This is a tricky one!. If you buy a Garmin in the UK, you could also buy their city navigator maps for New Zealand - but they're very expensive - over £250 - more than the price of buying a seperate Sat Nav in New Zealand!
TomTom currently have no New Zealand maps.
The best option seems to be Navman, who originated in New Zealand anyway! You could buy a F20, from Amazon.co.uk, or many High St Electronic Shops for about £150, then buy the New Zealand maps SD card from the Navman shop (£50, but they are out of stock!).
If you get one of the Navman N-Series, like the Navman N60i, from Amazon from about £220, you get can get the New Zealand maps, again from the Navman shop, on disc, for £99.99.
If you have friends / relatives in New Zealand it may be interesting to get them to price a Sat Nav there, to see if its actually cheaper to buy two seperate units. This is because you can get a very nice TomTom One or Garmin 200 for £150 for use in the UK, then maybe a similair unit for a similair price in New Zealand.
Another option may be if you're hiring a car while in New Zealand, get one with a built-in Sat Nav.
Navman Shop: here
Hope this helps! Rob.


Q. Could you please send me a simple step by step use of the Medion PNA205 as I am having difficulties in using my newly purchased one. Roz.

A. Hi Roz! I'm not familiar with that Sat Nav, but I've atatched the user guide here if that helps! Rob.


Q My tom tom one keeps flashing the battery low sign and then going off.i have left it on charge but it still keeps happening.have you any idea why. Chris.

A Hi Chris! Is your charging lead ok, ie is the light on the plug? Does your One work fine when plugged in? If it does work ok when plugged in, but turns off when disconnected, could be that the internal battery is faulty. Take it back to where you bought it, most TomTom's are covered by a 2 year guarantee. The shop should send it back to Tom Tom who will repair it. Hope this helps, Rob.


Q Hi Can I buy or copy user guide and where can i go for Product code Card for tom tom 710  any information please, John.

A Hi John! The user guide is here: (requires adobe reader): http://www.tomtom.com/lib/doc/go910_710_510/refman/TomTom_GO_EN.pdf
Not sure where you could get a product code card, but check out this link: http://www.tomtom.com/support/index.php?Language=1&query=product+code+card&FID=1662 Hope this helps! Rob.


Q. Hi Firstly, what a great set of reviews - congratulations, I will re-visit. I have sat nav in my car but want a unit that I can carry and use in borrowed cars, abroad etc. I am drawn to the Nuvi 250 but want Speed camera warnings (that I will use in my already satnav equipped car as it does not have the facility) and wonder how the Nuvi compares with the Tom Tom One? My wife has a One so I am familiar with its operation, is the 250 similar? Does it have bongs (that aren't annoying, I had a Road Angel - I used to like  Tiff Needell!)  and speed limit display etc? Would really appreciate help ASAP as I need to buy one in the next couple of days. Hope you can help. Kind regards Andrew

A. Hi Andy! Thanks for your comments - its great to recieve feedback on the site. Firstly, the Garmin Nuvi 250 (which has European and UK maps) is a really good compact GPS that comes pre-installed with the Cyclops speed camera database. As you approach a camera the warning icon appears on the map, and the info bar at the top of the screen tells you what speed the Nuvi thinks the camera is, accompanied by a couple of "bongs". If you're going over the speed limit for that camera the unit keeps "bonging" at you until you slow down. I've found the method works well with my Nuvi 200, and now even take it with me on routes I know well to remind me of the speed cameras. I have come across a couple of ommisions, so I would recommend that if you do go for one of the Nuvis that you subscribe to the speed camera database at www.pocketgpsworld.com . My Dad (who does a lot of driving) has their speed cameras on his Nuvi 200 and he is always raving about how good it is.

The TomTom One (in its GB or European version) is also a very capable compact Sat Nav. Its speed camera warning system is very similair to the Garmins, so there is little to choose between the two in terms of avoiding a speeding ticket. You must remember that these are passive devices, so although they know (and will warn you about) the locations of many common mobile speed camera traps, they cannot detect a newly set-up laser or gatso until it is added to the database. The choice between the TomTom or the Garmin Nuvi is very subjective. Go down to your nearest Halfords and ask for a demo of both. Take a list of addresses / Postcodes you might be using and enter them into both devices, so you can assess the map accuracy, and how each operating system suits you.

In my opinion the Garmin has better maps out of the box - but TomTom are introducing Mapshare to the ver. 3 One, and are promising to have it as a free upgrade to all existing TomToms. Mapshare will allow you to adjust the maps on your unit and download, for free, imporvements that other people have made, a vey exciting feature. The One has the better route planning options - you can choose to avoid certains roads for example, but the Nuvis are more stable. The One can also connect to a Bluetooth phone to download live traffic information to take you around queues on major routes. Which one would I choose? Wel, I've already got a Nuvi 200, and it has given me stirling service over the last few months. I love how small it is, the screen is clear and bright, the voice instructions loud, and it is very easy to use, but the TomTom is a good unit too. At the end of the day the best advice is for you to have a go, and do the address tests detailed above, and make a decision based on what you think suits your needs the most. Tell me how you get on, Regards, Rob.


Q. Hi! I Am looking for a new sat nav with European street level mapping, I do not really have the need for bluetooth, mp3, etc. My short list so far includes the Garmin nuvi 250 = £161.35,  Tom Tom One XL Europe = £198.00 and the Navman N40i £179.08.  Do any of the chosen models stand out as being better than than the others ? or maybe you have an alternative for me to consider, would appreciate any help. Many thanks Trevor.

A. Hi Trevor! Good question, you've picked 3 great units to choose from, but for me the answer is simple, because I recently recommended my Dad to buy a Nuvi 200 (the GB version of the 250), which he did, and after a month of use he loves it.
I was so impressed that I bought one too! The Nuvi 200 / 250 has the most accurate maps around (much better than TomTom) is easy to use, small enough to pop in your suit pocket, has a bright touch-screen, and is a bargain. Spend the difference on a nice Garmin slip-case, usb charger, and a subscription to the pocketgpsworld.com speed camera database. I've also just added a more in-depth review of the Nuvi 200 / 250, which also includes some video footage, on the following link: Garmin Nuvi 200 / 250 Review. Tell me how you get on, and thanks for visiting my site, Rob.


Q. Dear Sir or Madame,
Im very sorry to disturb you but I am looking to buy my partner a sat nav for Christmas and there is so many of them on the market Im not sure which one to buy!!!

Please would you be able to tell me which one you would recommend overall - He would only use it in the uk but is it worth the money to buy a Europe version for if he ever needed it?
I would be very very grateful for your help.

A. Hello! Which Sat-Nav to buy depends on your budget, but I recommend you spend at least £200.
It works out cheaper in the long run to buy the European maps with the new unit, but if you're not going to be going to Europe in the next couple of years I wouldn't bother.
For £199.99 you can't beat the new TomTom One GB.
For £279.99 you could get the TomTom One Europe, which has also European maps.
Spend a bit more and it's worth getting a TomTom 710, which has European maps, and speed cameras (very useful) and the handy feature of a Bluetooth hands-free kit for compatible mobile phones.
Your partner will be more than happy with any of the above options - I know I would be!
Hope that helped, Rob, Webmaster at sciuridae.co.uk.


Q. Could you advise as to which Sat Nav you would recommend between a TomTom 710 and a Navman n60i, thank you.

A. Hi! First, thanks for visiting our site. You may find this article helpful:
A quick look at a few sites show you can get a 710 for a real bargain price at the moment, and it is a great Sat Nav.
The choice between the Tomtom or the Navman boils down to whether you think the Bluetooth Mobile Phone hands-free capabilities of the 710 are more useful than the camera on the n60i. Personally I'd either go for the 710 or pay a bit more and get the Garmin 660, which includes a TMC (traffic avoidance) aerial.
Thanks, Rob.


Q. (Reply to above.) My new tomtom 710 does not have safety cameras in the list of POIs,can you tell me how i can download on to tomtom 710.Thanks

A. Good Choice!
Normally the 710 comes pre-installed with Safety Cameras - so try this link, it should help you out:

Thanks, Rob.


Q. Subject: Medion MDPPC250.
Hi, Any idea where I can buy a docking station for the subject unit?
Cheers Brian

A. Hi Brian! Looked in all the common places, including ebay Germany, but noone seems to do spare docking stations for the mdppc250. Maybe a visit to PC World or your local computer strore to see if any of the cables they sell for other Pocket PC's will fit. Rob.

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