Which M/bike GPS Maps for SE Asia

Discussion in 'GPS Use, Tracks & Maps Discussion' started by Johnsy, Oct 7, 2012.

  1. Johnsy

    Johnsy Active Member

    I am coming to Thailand in about 3 weeks, will hopefully pick up a Kawasaki Versys or similar and tour Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, Vietnam, Burma, China, Tibet for however long it takes. After trawling through GPS stats and details I have decided on a Strike Genius BT GPS but it seems their map supplier doesn't do maps for Cambodia, Laos, Vietnam, Burma, China!! What do you local guys use over there, how good are the maps, how much are the GPS's and map upgrades/purchases and how reliable are they? Appreciate any help to stop my brain from melting.
    PS any riding buddies would be good too.
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  3. TonyBKK

    TonyBKK Ol'Timer

    Seems to me that Garmin is the top choice in SE Asia with plenty of commercial and free maps available.
  4. brian_bkk

    brian_bkk Moderator Staff Member

    Agree with Tony.. Garmin seems to be king here in Sth East Asia..
    Make sure you buy your GPS before you arrive.. As the taxes are higher here and you will get quite a shock compared to your home country prices.

    I am using the Zumo 660.. It is great.. There are smaller models if that is a bit to pricey or too big..
    Everyone has an opinion on which is best or suits better.. It is up to your own feeling at the end of the day.

    Below link to the GPS forum should help get you started


    As you will be mainly on paved roads.. You can probably get away with using OSM save buying GPS maps for all the countries..

  5. Johnsy

    Johnsy Active Member

    Thanks Brian and Tony. I've always been a 2D paper map kind a person and have avoided most of this high tech stuff so it was intellectually challenging to get past a lot of the hype on GPS's and get down to the tin tacks of what each one can or can't do in reality. Anyway I've gone with the Garmin Montana 650 it seems that its going to be the most versatile GPS of them all. Using the OSM maps you pointed out Brian plus all of the other Garmin resources available out there I should have a pretty good system. Thanks again for your advice.
  6. Ginjaninja

    Ginjaninja New Member

    Hi Brian,
    I have recently purchased a Zumo 660 LM from the U.K. and it appears (looking at the Garmin website) that a Thai/S.E.A. original map is not available for purchase.
    I have contacted Garmin but still waiting for a reply.
    Are the free maps as detailed as a genuine map?
    Thanks and regards,
    (Hua Hin)
  7. beddhist

    beddhist Ol'Timer

    I have both the OSM and a recent ESRI (Garmin) map on my PC. ESRI has more roads, but I have found them very incorrect outside cities. When navigating it tends to send you down some dodgy dirt tracks, rather than proper roads.

    Most OSM roads have been mapped by hand either from GPS tracks or from aerial images. However, there are still significant holes in the road network.
  8. TonyBKK

    TonyBKK Ol'Timer

    Forgive newb question, but is it possible on modern GPS to have two maps running at the same time? OSM plus ESRI for example? I reckon if you were able to combine them you'd end up with a much more accurate map?

    I still haven't taken the GPS plunge but thinking of getting a Montana when I'm back in the US this summer.
  9. beddhist

    beddhist Ol'Timer

    Yes, as long as you don't try to use routing with more than one routing map covering the area you are in. It is quite common to have, say, a routable road map and a topo map loaded at the same time.

    If you load two road maps you may be seeing double, as roads could appear twice...

    Specifically, the OSM maps I use are routable, as is the ESRI map. You can load both, but you must take care to have only one enabled at any time.
  10. brian_bkk

    brian_bkk Moderator Staff Member

    No expert here.. but will make some assumptions on the quality / standard of the device that is doing the logging.
    Example Iphone / GPS logger will not be as accurate as a proper GPS like my Zumo 650 for example.

    When posting my tracks on OSM.. I can see some really big differences.. So usually update OSM with my Zumo track..
    To be really honest.. While not super accurate, more than good enough when on the trails as it is unusual to be in a rats nest of single trail, if you are, just correct and move back on to the path...

    Not exactly sure.. but some GPS devices can load more than one img file.. not all though.. Bit of a pain renaming the file.


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