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Magellan eXplorist 310 review

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Awards

  • Recommended by TR

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Magellan eXplorist 310
  • Magellan eXplorist 310
  • Magellan eXplorist 310
  • Magellan eXplorist 310

Summary

Our Score:

9

Pros

  • Waterproof and rugged
  • All the main hiking GPS functions
  • Very competitively priced

Cons

  • Only 512MB memory
  • No Micro SD slot
  • Small screen

Key Features

  • Waterproof to IPX-7 standard
  • Maps of major world roads
  • Detailed European and North American maps
  • Points of Interest and Geocaches
  • 512MB free memory
  • Manufacturer: Magellan
  • Review Price: £145.00

A pundit of digital technology recently argued that it is now no longer possible to make a movie like the Blair Witch Project, because GPS-enabled smartphones have rendered it nearly impossible to get lost, even in a deep forest. But, in reality, if you are exploring the wilderness, a smartphone is not your ideal companion, not least because it won't take it kindly if you drop it on a rock. A dedicated hiking GPS makes much more sense, but these have remained costly, for example Magellan's flagship eXplorist 710 comes in at just shy of £400. With the eXplorist 310, however, Magellan hopes to bring the base level down, whilst not compromising too much on features.

At first glance, the eXplorist 310 doesn't seem to be particularly cut down. It's ruggedly constructed, and meets the criteria of the IPX-7 standard. This means it can withstand up to 30 minutes submerged in up to a metre of water, so being dropped in a shallow river or a rainstorm won't be a problem at all. It achieves this feat with a rear cover that's held in place by a screw-locking key, and a rubber cover over the USB port. The latter requires a bit of a knack to replace securely, but didn't cause any problems in our water testing.

However, although the unit comes with a decent world map covering Western European and North American roads in detail, and major routes for the rest of the globe, if you want to add a more detailed upgrade then you will be disappointed to discover that no Micro SD slot is available for simply slotting in a map set. Instead, you will need to load these onto internal memory over the USB link, and there's a fairly modest 512MB available for this. It's also worth noting that extra maps, such as Magellan's own Summit Series range, can be pretty pricey, although this is mostly due to the cost of licensing terrain data from the likes of Ordnance Survey. For example, the OS Landranger map for Great Britain at 50k resolution costs the same as the eXplorist 310 itself.

robjohn

December 6, 2011, 8:02 pm

If you're put off by the high cost of OS type maps, then I see the Magellan UK website has an limited offer of a free GB regional OS or national park map - if you buy the 310 in a named Cotswold outlet on a particular day. Cumbersome deal but could save 𧴺. The regional maps seem to cover more than half of GB at 1:50000 mapping level.

Jack Ellis

November 22, 2016, 7:47 am

READ THIS FIRST IF YOU PLAN TO USE THIS FOR BUSHWALKING/HIKING -

I bought this unit from JB HiFi to use on a multi-day bushwalk my wife and I had planned for our wedding anniversary. The box clearly provided as follows: "Bonus State Based Topographic Map and Vehicle Kit when you purchase a Magellan eXplorist 310" - see photo.

I registered as directed and received an email to say that my topo maps would be provided within 45 DAYS after my purchase had been verified. I contacted Magellan about this. I explained that I had bought the unit for a specific walk nine days after the purchase. I received a response to say that this time frame was 'standard'.

I have corresponded with them now four times over the past week, providing all my details and a copy of my receipt. Although it only requires them to email me a download link, the maps have still not arrived.

DO NOT BUY THIS UNIT IF YOU HOPE TO USE THE INCLUDED TOPO MAPS WITHIN SEVEN WEEKS OF YOUR PURCHASE!

Based on my experience I will not be buying another Magellan product and I will be advising my friends to avoid Magellan (which seems to be distributed by Navman in Australia).

#magellan #navman #hiking #ripoffs #bushwalking #camping #geocaching #gps

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