I'm new to this forum and know very little about GPS, but since I'm interested in making a purchase, I am doing some research and trying to understand (emphasis on *trying* -- jury is still out on the success of that endeavor).
My main question focuses on the location of the unit. A little information here... I am looking to get a middle-of-the-road (so to speak) GPS unit which will give me step by step instructions and does what the Garmin site called "speaks street names" and which I've read elsewhere is called text-to-speech.
On my want list in order of importance:
- ease of use (intuitive, and can be manipulated while driving if need be),
- moderate cost (under $300 if possible),
- bright screen,
- favorites list,
- avoid toll roads,
- re-route if I make a "wrong" turn,
- alternate route if I land in traffic and want something different (I'm in Los Angeles, sometimes the traffic backs up and you just don't care about direct anymore, you want *anything* else),
- ability to receive traffic data from outside source (FM?) (optional),
- audio book player (totally optional).
I'm considering several of the Garmin products (although I haven't ruled out other manufacturers). Seems the Nuvi 300 series or higher units are popular here so I'll need to trundle on down to the local store and take a look see.
Now comes the part about location of the unit (you were wondering when I'd get around to that, I'll bet). I have a very utilitarian business vehicle, the lovely little Toyota Yaris hatchback. Yes, it's butt ugly, but in a cute way. In front of the driver and behind the steering wheel (where most cars have their instrument display) is actually a small compartment like a glove box. (pic here: http://www.toyota.com/images/vehicles/2 ... oto_10.jpg
) I was thinking maybe I can semi-permanently mount the GPS unit in there so I can easily close up that little compartment when I get to where I'm going and there would be no need for a windshield mount thingee (technical term there). So my question here is will the GPS unit still be able to talk to the satellites through the cheap plastic compartment door or will that be too much interference? If I can put the thing in there and it works okay, that would be great. It would be right in line of sight for me while I'm driving, the compartment door doesn't impede my vision, and it just closes like normal and nobody will be the wiser that a GPS hides in there. Yes, I'd have to drill a hole or two for wires and find a way to stabilize it in there (mount it somehow), but that part seems simple enough to a reasonably inventive person.
Based on what you all know of GPS systems, would it work? I can provide more pictures from my own car of what the compartment looks like if that will help. It's small, and quite literally the compartment door forms the top and front of it so there is no other real insulation directly above the compartment.
Thanks for any advice or feedback you can give.