Garmin Technical Information         By Dale DePriest

This table contains a comparison of the various products in the Garmin handheld GPS line. Instead of building a table entry for each product they have been grouped by family. The older multiplex units are represented by the G-38/G-40/G-45XL and the 12 channel parallel units are represented by the G-12/G-12XL/G48. The original mapping products are shown in the table entry for G-III/GIII+. There are special columns for the emap, etrex lines and 76 family. The etrex has two columns due to the split in the family coverage based on the click stick hardware. There is also some support for an electronic compass and an altimeter with vertical profiling. These are unique features in a few Garmin units. There is no specific coverage in the table for the G-II, the G-II+, the G-III Pilot, the G-12CX, the 12MAP, or the GPS-72. Instead these units are represented as note entries at the bottom of the table. The specifications for other Garmin units may be able to be implied from the table but no guarantee can be made for their applicability. The Rino products have the same gps specifications and features as the Venture and Legend.

General Notes for table.

Feature 38,
40,
45XL
12,
12XL,
48
III,
III+
V Emap Etrex, Camo = Europe, Summit Venture, Legend, Vista 76, Map76, Map76S Notes
Waypoints 250 500 500 500 500 500 500 Venture, 1000 500 76, 1000 Note 1
Waypoint names 6 6 6 15 10 6 10 10 characters
Waypoint comments 16 16 16 50 N N N 16 characters
Waypoint Altitude N N N Y Y Y Y Y AKA Elevation
Waypoint icons N 16 74 78 75 29 77 75  
Nearest Waypoint 9 < 160 km 9 < 160 km 9 < 320 km 10 15 < 130 km 9 < 320 km 15 < 130 km 10 Note 12
Project Waypoint Y Y Y Y N Y Y Y  
Favorite Waypoints N N N N N N Y N  
Previous Points N N N Y N N N N list of recently used points
MOB Y Y Y ? N N N Y Man Over Board
Routes 20 20 20 20 50 1, 20 on summit 20 50 Reversible
waypoints/route 30 30 30 50 50 50 50, 125 Legend, Vista 50, 125 on Map76(S)  
Route numbers Y Y N N N N N N  
Route names 16 16 16 > 32 13 13 13 21 characters
Trip Planner N N Y ? N N N Y  
Auto Routing N N N Y N N N N  
Popup Directions N N N Y N N N N  
2D mode Y Y Y Y Y Y (not summit) Y (not vista) Y Only if 3D is unavailable
Overdetermined
Solution
N Y Y Y Y Y Y Y can improve accuracy
Horizontal Accuracy 15 15 15 15 15 15 15 15 meters.
DGPS ready Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y  
Remote Control of beacon receiver Y Y Y Y A Y Y Y Y A means that automatic mode is available
DGPS Accuracy 5-10 1-5 1-5 3-5 1-5 1-5 1-5 3-5 meters
WAAS N N N Y N N Y Y accuracy < 3 Meters
Speed Accuracy 0.1 0.1 0.1 0.1 0.1 0.1 0.1 0.1 knots
Warm Start 20 sec 15 sec 15 sec 15 sec 15 sec 15 sec 15 sec 15 sec  
Cold Start 120 sec 45 sec 45 sec 45 sec 45 sec 45 sec 45 sec 45 sec  
EZ-Init via state or country via state or country via maps via maps via maps N city on venture, maps otherwise city on 76, maps otherwise aids in rapid lock if you have moved
Autolocate 15 min 5 min 5 min 2 min 5 min 5 min 5 min 5 min  
Tracked Satellites 8 12 12 12 12 12 12 12 upto
Waterproof Y nitrogen sealed Y (one m. for 30 min.) G-48 slightly less Y (one m. for 30 min.) Y (one m. for 30 min.) N (splash resistant) Y (one m. for 30 min.) Y (one m. for 30 min.) Y (one m. for 30 min. floats) generally battery compartment is not waterproof
Dynamics 3G 6G 6G 6G 6G 6G 6G 6G  
Units NSM NSM NSM NSM NSM NSM NSMY NSM N=Nautical, S=Statute, M=Metric, Y=Yards
City Database N 12XL 48 12CX Y Y Y N Y Y worldwide  
Nearest Cities N N 50 Y 50 N 50 50  
Navaid Database N 48 III+, 12Map with upload maps with upload maps with upload maps N Y Venture others with upload maps Y  
POI Database N N N Y (see note) Y (see note) N Y Y using optional maps
Weight 9.5 oz 9.5 oz 9.0 oz 9.0 oz 6.7 oz 5.3 oz 5.3 oz 7.5 oz with batteries
Case Ultrasonic welded Ultrasonic welded Gasketed Gasketed Ultrasonic welded Gasketed Gasketed Gasketed  
Temp Operating
Range
5F to 158F 5F to 158F 5F to 158F 5F to 158F 5F to 158F 5F to 158F 5F to 158F 5F to 158F Note 1
Screens 5 or 6 from 7 choices 5 or 6 from 7 choices 6 or 7 4 from 5 choices 4 4 from 5 choices +1 on summit 5 from 7 choices +1 on vista 5 +1 on Map76S Note 10,11, 13
Screen Size 2.2x1.5 2.2x1.5 2.2x1.5 2.2x1.5 2.2x1.65 2.2x1.2 2.2x1.2 2.2x1.6 inches
Screen Resolution 64x100 64x100 100x160 160x256 120x160 64x128 160x288 180x240 .
Screen Density 1,939 1,939 4,848 12,412 5,289 3,103 17,454 12,273 dots/sq. inch
Grey Scale N N Y Y Y Y Y Y Note 1,4
Battery Life 17 w/battery save 24 (more w/battery save) 36 w/battery save 25 w/battery save 14 w/battery save 22 w/battery save, 16 on summit if compass is on 20 venture, 18 legend, 12 vista w/ compass 16 hours, 12 Map76S w/ compass Note 1, normal mode is approx. 2/3 battery save
Batteries 4 4 4 4 2 2 2 2 AA cells
Backup battery Y Y Y N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A 3 months - rechargable lithium with a ten year life.
External power
(low voltage)
38 40 (5-8V) 12 (5-8V) N N 3-3.3 V 3-3.3 V 3-3.3 V N All need an external voltage regulator
External power
10-32V
45XL II 12XL 48 12CX II+ 12MAP Y Y N N N 8-35V All use Garmin Round connector
Dimensions 14.6 x 5.1 x 3.4 14.6 x 5.1 x 3.4 12.7 x 5.9 x 4.1 12.7 x 5.9 x 4.1 14 x 6 x 2 11.2 x 5.1 x 3.0 11.2 x 5.1 x 3.0 15.7 x 6.9 x 3.4 cm
Number of keys 10 10 12 12 12 5 10 12 Note 1, rocker = 4 keys
Sun/Moon positions N N N N Y N Y Y North finder
Map Screen
orientation
North Up, Track Up North Up, track up, course up North Up, track up, course up North Up, track up North Up, track up North Up, Track Up North Up, Track up North up, Track up, Course up  
Main Tracklog 768 1024 1900 3000 2048 1536, 3000 on summit 2048, 10000 Legend, Vista 2048, 10000 on Map76(S) Length of log is setable on units with 10000
Saved Tracklogs N N 10 10 10 10 10 10 Note 2
Length of saved log N/A N/A 250 250 250 125, 500 on summit 250, 750 on Legend, Vista 250, 750 on Map76(S)  
Discontinuous
Tracklogs
Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Saved logs are continuous
Tracklog collection Automatic or time Automatic or time Automatic, time, distance Automatic, time, distance Automatic Automatic Automatic, time, distance Automatic, Time, Distance  
Tracklog modes Off, Wrap Off, Wrap, Fill (with alarm) Off, Wrap, Fill (with alarm) Off, Wrap Wrap Wrap Off, Wrap, Fill (with alarm) Off, Wrap, Fill (with alarm) .
Altitude in tracklog N N N Y Y Y Y Y, depth .
Area calculation from track log N Y N Y N N Y Y Some will also work from routes.
Backtrack tracklog via route via route via route saved tracklog saved tracklog saved tracklog saved tracklog saved tracklog .
Dead Reckoning 30 secs. 30 secs. 30 secs. 30 secs. 30 secs. 30 secs. 30 secs. 30 secs. .
Project Track N N N N N N N N  
Pan & Zoom Map screen Both (you can zoom while panned) Both (you can zoom while panned) Both - dedicated zoom keys Both - dedicated zoom keys Both - dedicated zoom keys Zoom only Both - dedicated zoom keys Both - dedicated zoom keys Note 1,4
Fish/Hunt calculator N N N Y N Camo Y Y When to fish/hunt, Note 14
Sunrise/sunset Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y .
Moonrise, moonset, phase N N N Y Y Camo Y Y Note 14
Calculator N N N Y N N Y N standard and scientific
Position averaging N Y Y Y Y N N Y horizontal only except emap, 76
Daylight Savings Time Manually Manually Manually Automatic Automatic Automatic Automatic Automatic on Manual units you must change time zone, automatic can be disabled
Quadrifilar Antenna 45XL 48 Y Y N N N Y Note 5,6, removeable except 76 series
Patch Antenna 38 40 12 12XL 12MAP N N Y Y Y N  
Optional External Antenna 40 45XL 12XL 48 Y 2.5 V on 12Map Y 2.5 V Y 2.5 V N N Y 2.5 V 5 V power except as noted. also Note 1,4,5,6
Backlit lamp levels 1 3 3 2 1 1 1 1  
Trip Odometer Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y .
A Second Odometer N N Y Y Y N Y Y .
Max Speed N Y Y Y Y Y Y Y .
Speed Limit 99 999 999 999 999 999 999 999 Knots
Average Speed (moving) N Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Note 3
Average Speed (overall) N N Y Y Y Y Y Y Note 3
Tunable Speed Filtering N G-48 N N N N N Y .
Trip Time N Y Y Y Y Y Y Y .
Elasped Time N Y Y Y (trip) Y (trip) N Y (trip) Y (trip) .
Direction (Compass) Settings Magnetic, True, Grid North
degrees
Magnetic, True, Grid North, User defined
degrees / mils
Magnetic, True
degrees
Magnetic, True
degrees
Magnetic, True, Grid
degrees
Magnetic, True, Grid North
degrees
Magnetic, True, Grid North, User
degrees
Magentic, True, Grid North, User
degrees
.
Built in Electronic Compass N N N N N Summit Vista Map76S Can also be simulated by GPS when moving
Electronic Compass Accuracy N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A +/- 5 degrees +/- 5 degrees N/A 1 degree resolution
Built in Barometric Altimeter N N N N N Summit Vista Map76S Can also be calculated by GPS
Barometric Altimeter Accuracy N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A 10 feet 10 feet N/A 1 foot resolution
Upload / download routes Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y .
Upload / download Waypoints Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y .
Upload / download tracklog Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y .
Audible Alarms 45XL 12XL 48 12CX 12MAP N Y Y N N Y All have visual alarms
Anchor Alarm N 48 N Y N N N Y  
Proximity Alarms 9 45XL 9 N 10 N N N 10  
Arrival Alarms Automatic 1 min warning or distance Automatic 1 min warning or distance Automatic 1 min warning or distance Automatic 15 sec and up scaled to speed Automatic 15 sec and up scaled to speed Automatic 15 sec Automatic 15 sec Automatic 15 sec and up scaled to speed or distance or time Automatic rollover to next route leg even if alarm criteria isn't met.
Simulation Mode Every function can be done Every function can be done All function can be done except setting location All Every function can be done Most functions can be done but route speed is fixed. Most functions can be done but route speed is fixed Every function can be done Garmin saves battery power in this mode
Language Support 1 9 1 6 5 1, 12 summit, 13 camo 1 7 note 14, 15
Maps N N Y, III+ and 12Map have uploadable maps Y Y, needs optional cartridge for uploadable maps N Legend, Vista 76Map, Map76S .
Data Memory None Unknown 1.4 Meg 19 Meg Optional None 1M Venture, 8M Legend, 24M Vista 1M 76, 8M 76Map, 24M Map76S emap optional cartridges 8, 16, 32, 64, 128 Meg
Tide Data N N N N N N N Y Americas only
Display Customization Almost none Some Extensive Extensive None None - pointer sceen holds last entry Good Extensive Note 6
Display Orientation Vertical Vertical Vertical / Horizontal Vertical / Horizontal Vertical Vertical Vertical Vertical Note 4,5,6
Interface outputs Garmin, NMEA Garmin, NMEA Garmin, NMEA, Text (see note) Garmin, NMEA, Text Garmin, NMEA, Text Garmin, NMEA, Text Garmin, NMEA, Text Garmin, NMEA Text output III+, 12map
Interface inputs Garmin, NMEA, RTCM Garmin, NMEA, RTCM Garmin, NMEA, RTCM Garmin, NMEA, RTCM Garmin, NMEA, RTCM Garmin, RTCM Garmin, NMEA, RTCM Garmin, NMEA, RTCM  
Datums 104 + user defined 107 + user defined 105 + user defined > 100 + user defined 107 + user defined > 100 + user defined > 100 + user defined > 100 + user defined  

Notes:
1. 12CX is a 12XL except it has 2048 tracklog, 3 color display, 1000 waypoints, waypoint maintenance improvements, 35 hour battery life w/battery save, dedicated zoom keys, temperature 5 - 131 F
2. III Pilot is like a III except - no saved logs, no MOB, has Jeppeson database support, HSI compass display, vertical navigation support
3. III and III+ has configurable average speed.
4. 12MAP - A 12CX hardware and case design with audible alarms. Software features and display are the same as a III+ except no display rotation.
5. II is the same specs as other multiplex units except it in a III case design with rotatable display
6. II+ is like a III except no maps and has lower resolution display and much less customization.
7. keypad if used counts as 4 keys but may be used for 8 positions on units without separate keys.
8. Information for final destination available on G12 family and G45 family only on active route screen. Not on a navigation screen. etrex and emap report this on backtrack routes. emap reports this on route page.
9. Etrex, emap reports on the active route screen but, active bactraks show ETE and Dist on main screen. Note that emap, etrex calculates this differently from other units.
10. Etrex summit, vista, 76S contains another screen for vertical profiling. Can be customized to display barometric profiling.
11. Etrex and Emap display some live data on menu screens. Both will display active route data and the emap has a trip screen that displays average speed, max speed, and odometer read outs. The setup screen is the only place on the emap to display time in seconds.
12. Emap and new etrex's computes nearest from cursor position - the others from present position.
13. GPS V - satellite screen, map, compass (position), trip guidance.
14. The European basic etrex is like the USA Camo except for color.
15. Based on the US version, you can buy some units in other languages.
16. The GPS 72 is like the 76 except there is no provision for an external antenna and the screen resolution is 120x160.
17. The Rino products have the same gps specifications and features as the Legend and Venture. Of course physical sizes are different. In addition the Rino product supports waypoint comments of up to 30 characters with a default of the date and time.

All support English/Metric/Nautical units for speed, distance, altitude.
Feature 38, 40, 45XL 12, 12XL, 48 III, III+ V Emap Etrex, Camo, Summit Venture, Legend, Vista Notes
Grids
DDD.ddddd Y Y Y Y Y Y Y .
DDD/MM.mmm Y Y Y Y Y Y Y .
DDD/MM/SS.s Y Y Y Y Y Y Y .
TD N Y Y Y N N Y Loran
UTM/UPS Y Y Y Y Y Y Y .
MGRS N Y Y Y Y Y Y Military
OSGB Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Great Britain
Irish Y Y Y Y Y Y Y .
Swiss Y Y Y Y Y Y Y .
Swedish Y Y Y Y Y Y Y .
German Y Y Y Y Y Y Y .
French N N N N N N N .
Indo So LCO Y Y Y N N N N .
India N Y Y Y N N N O, IA, IB, IIA, IIB, IIIA, IIIB, IVA, IVB
Maidenhead N Y III+ Y Y Y Y .
New Zealand N Y N Y Y Y Y .
Taiwan Y Y Y Y Y Y Y .
W. Malayan RSO N Y N Y Y Y Y .
Dutch Grid N N N Y Y Y Y .
Qatar Grid N N N Y Y Y Y .
Finish KKJ27 grid N N N Y Y Y Y .
User Grid N Y Y Y Y Y Y .
Navigation Data
Location Y Y Y Y Y Y Y lat/lon or grid
Dual Location grids N N N N N Y N Lat/Lon must be one
Altitude Y Y Y Y Y Y Y  
Speed YYYY YYY  
Track YYYY NYY aka Course
Bearing YYYY YYY  
ETE YYYY YYY time to go
ETA YYYY YNY  
XTE YYYY NNY Course error
CTS YYYY NNY To Course
VMG YYYY NNY  
TRN YYYN NNY  
ETAD N N Y Y Y N Y Note 8,9 ETA at Destination
ETED N N N Y N N Y ETE at Destination
Dist to Next Y Y Y Y Y Y Y .
Dist to Destination N N Y Y Y N Y Note 8,9
VS NNNY NSummitVista Vertical Speed

To "Working with Garmin" TOC

Dale DePriest

revison
99/9/8 initial release
99/12/23 minor fixes
99/12/27 changed maidenhead reference.
00/1/7 added more data
00/1/11 added etrex and many more fields to compare this product
00/1/13 fixed some etrex specs.
00/2/1 added 2.04 III+ changes.
00/3/7 add new 4.57 G-12 changes and 2.04 etrex changes
00/5/29 added emap
00/6/10 updated nearsest info - emap ete
00/7/6 added etrex summit
00/7/29 updated some emap data.
00/10/8 updated emap and etrex for new release
00/12/15 corrected some numbers.
01/1/11 added new etrex models
01/2/12 added compass and altimeter information
01/4/1 added 76 and more data on new etrex models.
01/4/9 updated 76 data.
01/9/24 added GPS V. revised some entries 01/10/7
02/4/22 updated 76S data and comments on European etrex.
02/6/14 added some data on the GPS V.
02/8/9 added gps 72.
03/3/5 added note on Rino