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20

Mar

2011

Magellan eXplorist 710 Handheld GPS review
Written by Jason Elliot   
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Magellan  eXplorist 710Magellan rebooted their eXplorist handheld GPS line. Magellan announced the updated line in July of 2010, and the new models were released for the 2010 holiday shopping season.

The line is a refreshing change from the company’s Triton line. The Triton line received praise but was panned in reviews for its lack of integration with Geocaching.com and old-school PC and Mac connectivity.

The top of the new line is the eXplorist 710. Magellan has enhanced the traditional GPS used as a survival tool to a multi-tool for highlighting backcountry adventures through audio and video media.

The Magellan eXplorist 710 is IPX-7 that makes it waterproof if dropped in a shallow stream. Or if it’s accidentally dropped in the beer cooler. Magellan built a 3 inch touch screen in the design the hub of the GPS.

The home screen of the eXplorist 710 is the map screen. Tap it and four navigational choices appear anchored in the corners of the screen. Magellan has allotted the upper right menu – OneTouch - option for users to build shortcuts for commonly accessed waypoints, routes and tools.

Magellan stepped up with their maps with enhanced topos and better road maps. It's  capable of basic driving navigation. Angled 3-D maps enhance the trail experience. Allowing the eXplorist 710 to mimic a POV perspective of where you stand. It can be useful for quirky geocache finds.

The GPS’ three-axis compass was accurate under the testing conditions. The naked late winter trees isn’t the prime testing conditions, but the GPS was accurate for geocaching. Magellan included a barometer to warn of shifting air pressure allowing you to layer-up for coming cold fronts. The built-in altimeter displays the changes in altitude during your treks.

The integration of audio and video will makes the most tech-infused backcountry explorer satisfied. A 3.2 megapixel digital and video camera, microphone and speaker setup allows you to capture and narrate your trips whether on foot, bike, or boat.

Each video, snapshot and voice recording is geo-referenced. Upload your trips to your computer and share your trips with a multimedia zing. The Magellan eXplorist 710 has 3GB of internal memory and a micro SD card slot for expanded memory.

Magellan corrected the downfalls from the Triton line with a USB cable to communicate with your PC or Mac. Compatibility with Geocaching.com made cache finding with the eXplorist 710 effortless.

What is Geocaching

Geocaching.com says...

Geocaching is a high-tech treasure hunting game played throughout the world by adventure seekers equipped with GPS devices. The basic idea is to locate hidden containers, called geocaches, outdoors and then share your experiences online.

The eXplorist 710 has a few negatives. The GPS is powered by two AA batteries. Magellan touts 16 hours of battery life, but testing proved differently – 8 hours typically. Several menus have sliders to access all their choices. The functionality of the sliding menus was inconsistent and frustrating at times. The driving navigation does provide verbal cues, but functionality of the driving navication is not comparable to a car GPS system.

Magellan Logoimages/MagellanThe negative are few and the positives are plenty for the Magellan eXplorist 710. It’s a handheld GPS that embraces video and audio to make your outdoor activities a social event to be shared with others. (MSRP $549.99)


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Jason Elliot

JElliotJason Elliot is the Editor and Publisher of OutdoorInformer.com. Elliot has established a respected following with the top industry professionals and gearheads for his nonbiased reviews of outdoor gear and apparel. Elliot is a regular contributor to Examiner.com, Trails.com and other publications on top of his editorial and writing role with OutdoorInformer.com.

Elliot left a successful fifteen-plus year management career that he worked at Fortune 500 and S&P 500 companies to pursue his passion for writing about the outdoors. He holds a bachelor’s degree from Clarion University of Pennsylvania and a master’s degree from La Roche College.

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