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Full menu, usability and verdict

By James Morris

Reviewed:

Summary

Our Score:

9

From the map screen, the back button takes you to an iconographic menu, whch gives you access to the eXplorist 310's full range of features. Although you can use the Search Nearby function to access these, here you can browse your stored waypoints and tracks. There are also built-in Points of Interest (POI) and Geocache databases. The POIs only include things like parks, water features and town centres, not the restaurants and amenities found with in-car sat-navs, although there is a listing of public transportation hubs. The Geocache listing includes a popular selection, allowing you to get started with this increasingly popular hobby, but you can download more from the Geocaching.com website and install these over the eXplorist 310's USB link.

Buried amongst the tools is a handy listing of optimal hunting and fishing times, depending on the current date, although you can check these for any date you like, and plan your trip accordingly.

Magellan eXplorist 310

In use, the eXplorist 310 acquits itself well. It has a SiRFstarIII GPS receiver, a recent chipset, so locks pretty quickly (usually in under a minute during our testing). The device also copes reasonably well with intermittent line-of-sight, sometimes getting a lock when indoors near a window or through a thin roof. The quoted battery life of 18 hours with a pair of lithium AA cells is also pretty decent. There's a track on the back for securing the eXplorist 310 to a mounting system or lanyard, although a large plastic loop at the top of the device is also available for attaching the device to your backpack or clothing with a cord, reducing your chance of losing it.

Verdict

Magellan's eXplorist 310 includes the core features to get you started with GPS-powered hiking. The lack of Micro SD will be a hindrance to installing extra maps. But, otherwise, only premium features have been left out. Coming in at under £150, it undercuts equivalent devices from other manufacturers, such as Garmin's Dakota 20 or Dakota 10. So it may not be your dream hiking companion, but if the price has always prohibited your outdoor pursuits entering the digital age, the eXplorist 310 could be the device which finally makes this affordable.

Overall Score

9

Scores In Detail

  • Battery Life 9
  • Design 9
  • Features 8
  • Performance 9
  • Usability 8
  • Value 10

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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