Okay, picked up the Mio C310x today AND AM OVERLY IMPRESSED. Will be giving it a test run over the holidays and will report back on this small, inexpensive, yet powerful little gem. Feeling sort of "out of the mainstream" with this unit as I've always been a Garmin fan, but I gotta admit you can't beat the package for the price.
Picked mine up today, the last one in stock at my local Staples, for $199, then got the SD card to go with it, 1gig for $19.99, not sure I could get a better deal!!!
Will report back with tests and give you guys some feedback on this sweet little unit.
I'm starting to feel like a Communist at a Flea Market here, speaking well about a brand other than Garmin. Am I mistaken or is this site leaning heavily towards Garmin? Do they offer a sponsorship, cause if they do I want a piece of that and will switch to their brand...
You must admit, while espousing the Garmin mantra that oh they invented GPS or they were there first or some such nonsense, that if you lay a Garmin unit alongside this sweet Mio unit, you might actually notice your hand straying towards the Mio. Especially when you compare the two side by side.
Let's put some of that down here so you can be the judge. Pros:
* 20 channel SiRFstar III Chipset
* 3.5" anti-glare TFT touchscreen/65k colors/QVGA 320x240 pixels/landscape orientation
* 400 MHz CPU / 2 GB Flash ROM / 64 MB RAM / Win CE .NET 4.2 Core
* 1200 mAh Li-ion (up to 5 hours) (been on mine now 7 hours on it's first charge and battery life shows 70%)
* 6 oz (170 grams)
* One touch "add a cam" feature
* One touch "add a POI" feature
* Track log recording and playback of "cookie crumbs" for multiple tracks (useful for off-roading and hiking)
* Adjustable Over-speed limit warnings
* Zoom, tilt, and Pan on 3d Display
* Fly Over option - allows for preview of route in 3d overflight mode
* Direct coordinate entry - allows for lat/long entry directly into unit or via POI entry
* Audible and visible speed camera warnings
* Variable transportation type - Car, taxi, bus, truck, emergency, ferry, bicycle, pedestrian, etc.
* MP3 player (so what)
* $199 at Staples until 12/24
* Well, it ain't Garmin
* Only alarm function is for approaching cameras (but does allow for four separate camera types)
* No bluetooth capability (so what)
* No such good tech support, but they're still new
* Well, it ain't a Garmin
* Made by the French originally (almost made me puke)
That's all I could think of tonight. I'll post a link to photos of this gem tomorrow so that you can look at it and wonder "why did I buy that Garmin?"...
By the way, subject matter above included much frivolity and irony... you can tell when Robin is posting a joke as he is holding his right hand in the air. During the above posts, Robin had his right hand in the air the entire time. Therefore, the owners and management of POIFactory can not be held responsible for Robin's lack of taste and poor sense of humor, and may be allowed to have him taken out and soaked in a vat of really old syrup...
hand still in the air!
I thought Gore invented GPS...
I work at the source of GPS... nope Garmin does not have the corner by a long shot... just one tiny piece in the puzzle. I just think alotta users on the civil side use Garmins. I have had Lowrance, Magellan, Audiovox, Litton, and for the money, Garmin still puts interesting stuff in theier units for the money...
And it appears they've beta tested their units best.
They do make a good piece of civil equipment. But I think, much like alotta folks have issues with Bill Gates but still use Windoze - they stick with a product often because it's well supported and highly "commmonized".
Oh - when you commute and work in a region that requires hands-free phones, the Bluetooth is a real plus, and company's are smart to court that large market - not that I like using a phone on the road (not much different than 6 radios and a stick tho) - but the job demands it...
My added 2C
Added a picture gallery to show some views of the Mio C310x. Will be adding more showing functional software and mounting kits. Notice that it's almost the same size as my Blackberry, being only a shade thicker, and more square than the blackberry.
Pics posted at:
Click on any individual photo then use Next/Previous keys to navigate. Click on any photo to expand to full size view.
Two guys I work with got mios and I tinkered with one before i got my garmin and i must say the graphics are impressive. I want to try one again after using my nuvi for a week to compare myself. for 199 how can you beat it.
I almost bought two, just to have a spare! Could get two for less than what I paid for my Magellan RoadMate. I've now fully customized mine, adding in redlight cams, creating custom POI's, then modifying the skins and functions of the GPS unit itself.
It's a great little device.
Here's a copy of the loader skin that I created for the MioMap program, check it out and let me know what you think!
Been following your exploits on gpspassion and am happy to find you here too. Thanks for the Mio primer you have in work, it's been helpful so far and I look forward to your updates...
Almost finished with the POI Loader session. Should have that posted in the next day or so..just ran out of gas...lol
Robin, first would like to say, very impressed with your knowledge and time invested in the mio360x! Its because of your response to my question, that i purchased the 360x. This is my first and i love it. Took a little getting used to but got the basics down. Tried to reach their tech help, was that a joke. Never got to speak to anyone and learn everything from their FAQ's. Well thanks for your response and will continue to learn from your interest, thanks...
Cool, have you tried the skins yet? I'm on like my fifth now, and I really like them. They jazz up the function of the mapping part of the Mio.
I am going to do a section on using the Mio Transfer to install the skins, from the SD card. You can store your favorite skins and transfer back and forth, never getting too bored with one. Love the fact that I can fully customize that thing!
I have looked at the Mio several times and only played once. I was impressed by the graphics and fuction. The store I was at was having problems with the contection sourse though, so I never had a chance for a compltete test drive. I have been researching for a couple of weeks now and can't make up my mind. I need to get one for my work truck. How many POI come preloaded in the Mio? I don't feel the need to follow the pack or else I would have already bought the garmin. You user opinions are helpful and I will take a second look tomorrow.
3.5 million POI's, but don't let that number fool you, I find that most of the restaurants, stores, gas stations, etc., where I live are not in the POI's. I don't mind so much as I'm enjoying playing with it and setting up my own custom POI's. Many of the POI's take up memory and do me no good. I'm more interested in very specific POI's such as gas stations on the highway, rest stops, etc. The back road stuff would be nice to know, but if I take a trip that route I usually plan it very carefully, include appropriate rest stops, gas stops, etc. I usually spend several hours on the internet planning a long route, like I have coming up here soon. I'm going to DC, then NJ/NYC, then over to Chicago, down to Indiana, down to Atlanta, then to Orlando, then finally back to the Charlotte area. In that trip I'll probably do a couple of bed and breakfasts, do some touring of the sites, etc. I seldom get in a hurry on long trips like this, and try to make time to "smell the roses" along the way.
The Mio, in my opinion, is a great GPS unit for someone that wants the freedom to customize it, and to save several hundred $$$. It' so cheap I'm thinking of buying an extra for the boat. I would say that it's a bit more to learn than the Garmins and Magellans, and many others, because it's so new and their technical support is very lacking. They do however have a very strong following.
For me, spending around $200 to get all that bang in a pretty little pearly white unit was just the thing...
The second look was worth it. It worked very well once I got used to navigating the menus. The only problem I found was in the routing. I had it route several different locations for me. Five of the seven routes were pretty much the way I would have traveled. The other two seemed very awkward and out of the way. have you encountered this. Is it something I am doing wrong. By the way, I had no problem find the POI I was looking for.
Hi, Robinh, I think I found this great site from a link you posted on another GPS forum.
What is the POI loader? Could you please give me a little bit info about that?
I experienced this too. In my case it likes to take me through subdivisions instead staying on a main road. Maybe without all the 4-way stops it would have been faster.
You may want to change the routing parameters (Shortest, Fastest, Economical)and see what that gives.
If you know the route it gave is incorrect you can report it here http://www.teleatlas.com/MapInsight/index.htm This is the map company that MIO uses. Although it will be a while before you see any changes in the Mio maps.
I am using MIO C310x for almost 2 months and found its always 100 yards off by target. Its never taking me to exact address.
Also, as you specified its always giving us weird route.
I found lately it is taking more than 5 minutes to sync with satelites.
Do you have the same issue?
I got my MIO C310x on BFday for only $125 after using staples coupon ($25 off of $150) and got 1gb sd card only for 3.99 at Circuit City on same day.
But if you compare it with other GPS systems its still good deal.
BTW, Your site is very nice. Just wondering when are you going to add speed camera information?
First, for those of you who have a Mio, I also find the routing to be somewhat suspect. Well, I should say I did, until I loaded a new skin and some updates. I've used DeLorme's Street Atlas for years, and have a new release that I use in the company car with the USB antenna, and compared routing on an upcoming trip that I'm making to the Florida panhandle. The route it gave was different than the route given by the Mio. The Mio's route was almost all major highway and was about 59 miles longer, but the time estimate had it as faster.
When I downloaded all the Mio updates, plus a new skin, I was able to directly correlate both routes, almost to a Tee. There are many Mio updates on the gpspassions forums at the following link:
After doing all the upgrades to my Mio, it now displays a new routing method, Easy. Easy is the best one by far, the fastest and easiest route that it can find. Not sure why Mio didn't provide that in their initial release, so I suggest you go get that update.
I am also building a site, as shown in my signature, that will give a step by step programming guide with photos, basically a Mio for Dummies site. However, I haven't gotten through all of that yet and likely won't for the next several weeks due to travel requirements at work.
As to loading POI's, they are easy if you have all the appropriate software needed. You need to get iGO POI Explorer, you need the Mio Transfer mod thats shown on the gpspassions forums, and you need something to create your POI list with. I personally create it with Google Earth, then dump them into the iGO POI Explorer program.
If you wish, send me an email as I have step by step instructions for loading custom POI's into the Mio, but in my Email only. I haven't completed the POI editor portion of my site yet.
Hope that helps...
I was about to get the Mio cuz they have it on sale at compUSA. but i read reviews that it loses it's connection a lot. i guess it depends on your area
I have the Mio 310X and haven't experienced that (yet?). I'm in the SF bayarea. Have used it when trees block overhead (hiking) and it still functioned. It's a great unit for the price. (Got it during Black Friday for $149).
My initial negs were the accuracy and the routing it would select. Then found out it shows locations just like mapquest, google map and my other gps, Nuvi 350 shows. As for routings, I think Robinh said he loaded the current updates and was able to improve the routing selection. I have done the updates yet.
To me, each gps has it plus and minus. I like the price I paid for the Mio. The Nuvi was quite a bit more expensive. But the price seems to be coming down with the release of their newer product line.
I got this unit during BF 2006. Since then, I have use it to drive from San Jose to Seattle and explorer some place I will never travel too. Love it and I will recommend to friends.
I think that this is a great beginner's GPS. The ability to skin it and use it as a Window CE platform really gives it a new dimension that the other GPS do not offer.
That's the whole reason I bought the Mio and took my $799 Magellan back. With the Mio, I have a Windows CE based device that I now have a video player, mp3 player, sudoku game, another card game, lots of other stuff that Mio never intended, but for a hack like me saying that it's Windows CE was sort of like daring me to hack it. And all that hacking is legal, to the point that Mio-Tech is now sending certain customer questions to my site! Maybe they could pay me?? Well, not holding my breath for that, but it does show some of the value of the research I've put into transforming my $200 entry level GPS unit into a $1500 chart plotter with navigational capabilities, geocaching, plus watching movies on planes is great! I have 15 full length movies on it so far, including last months trip to Seattle where I watched the new James Bond Casion Royale.
Anyway, I wish I could post screen shots here so you all could see what the Mio can do, because I think you'd at least be impressed with it's look and feel. There are shortcomings to a $200 GPS unit, like you won't get audible turn by turn instructions, but I don't need those anyway, telling me to "turn right in 1000 feet", etc., is more than enough for me.
I'll put a few links here to graphics that are screen shots directly from my Mio, so you can peruse at your leisure...
Modified Mio Startup Screens:
Nice retro startup with an Army Air Corps theme -
My custom startup skin -
For you old schoolers who like the old VW bug, this one is hours and hours of playing around -
And for those of you who believe that size does count -
I have literally hundreds of startup skins that I've built to give a wide diversity of interests their "own" when loading the MioMap program. If you've got a Mio and want to know how easy this is, drop me an email.
Now, the Mio in action:
Customized boot up display, from Fred Lynx -
Highly customized GPS status display -
(all the Mio GPS displays show Europe or Africa, so I had to give it up for the US and create a display for that)
The Mio hard at work navigating a route -
this last one, the Mio zooms in using "smart zoom" as you approach a turn, and on this custom "skin" it also gives you a "turn guidance bar" on the left letting you know exactly how close you are to your turn. Very well done, IMHO....
Also, to those of you in this community who have noticed that I've not been around, my apologies, I've been traveling constantly for the past month and it looks like that's going to continue for quite some time. Sorry I can't be more involved right now...
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