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 AIO (All in One) Comparisons - Choices
 [TOPIC] Road Testing the Nuvi 1490T & TomTom 540S
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NanaimoRick

Canada
7889 Posts

Posted - 01 déc. 2009 :  00:28:30  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
UPDATED 20100619 : Rick's article is now available on the portal :ROAD TESTING - Garmin Nuvi 1490T and TomTom XXL 540s
ROAD TESTING - Garmin Nuvi 1490T vs TomTom XXL 540S


Nuvi 1490T - 5-inch display, Bluetooth® wireless, FM lifetime traffic, lane assist with junction view, preloaded street maps for North America, speaks street names, Where am I?, photo navigation, ecoRoute™, pedestrian navigation options

TomTom XXL 540-S - 5-inch XXL screen, No Bluetooth, 24/7 IQ Route Technology, Advanced Lane Guidance, preloaded street maps of North America, speaks street names, Help Me!, Tom Tom Map Share Technology, Easy Port Mount




Well here we go again! Hopefully you recall the 8700 mile, month long trip my wife and I took in May 2008 where we compared the, then new, Nuvi 780 and the TomTom 930T. If not, check out the blow by blow >> COMPARISON <<or the >> SUMMARY <<

Starting on December 5th, we are off on another GPSpassion comparison road trip. This time we are not traveling as far, only about 4000 miles, but the road test will run 3 1/2 to 4 months as we spend the winter in the American southwest. We've updated our GPS units for this trip to the Garmin Nuvi 1490T and the TomTom XXL 540S. As our trip, and winter vacation, progresses we would once again like to keep you posted on our findings as we use these 2 units, side by side.

Using this thread, we would also like to answer any questions you folks have concerning these 2 devices and how they compare in 'real world' situations. Like in our last comparison, we will cover things like:

- Ease of Use - Menus choices and layout, Configurability, ease of route creation, etc.
- Quality of Maps - including route calculation accuracy, poi database, etc.
- Screen - ease of viewing, night viewing, information on the screen, etc.
- Sound/Voice Quality - ease of hearing voice instructions, quality of TTS voices, speaker quality, etc.
- Miscellaneous Items - features available on one unit but not the other like Bluetooth and Traffic, are they useful, etc.

What we are looking for now, and as we travel, is input from you on things that you would like us to compare between the Nuvi 1490T and the TomTom XXL 540S. Just post your questions to this thread. We will be checking it daily as we travel and over the winter and will post a reply as quickly as possible.

Rick James - Nuvi Forum Moderator
Nuvi 350 - Nuvi 760 - Nuvi 1695LM - Nuvi 3790LMT (with ecoRoutes HD) - Nuvi 2460LMT - Nuvi 3597LMTHD (with ecoRoutes HD) - DriveLuxe 50LMTHD also TomTom 540S for side by side comparison >> Here <<
2016 Chevrolet Equinox LTZ 6 CYL AWD


Edited by - NanaimoRick on 02 déc. 2009 00:05:56

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gpspassion

94645 Posts

Posted - 01 déc. 2009 :  00:35:23  Show Profile  Visit gpspassion's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Lucky you, this is going to be a marvellous trip (no Big Sur though between San Luis Obispo and Carmel, maybe just as wise in the winter)...and lucky us for the upcoming reports and pictures from the road ! It will be interesting to see whether IQ Routes v2 has improved the ETA and routes. Based on my testing, IQ Routes v1 had brought the TeleAtlas maps up to par with the Navteq maps in that area.

Discounts and Assistance/Réductions et Assistance (Club GpsPasSion) / Où commencer?
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gatorguy

USA
648 Posts

Posted - 01 déc. 2009 :  01:08:59  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Rick, do take the time to stop by the TuTuTun Lodge in Gold Beach Oregon for at least a night, tho two would be better. You'll have no regrets.

Garmin 1695 / 760 / 255 / Navigon for Android / Navigon 8100T / Garmin Dakota 10 / Geomate
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prsmith

Canada
30 Posts

Posted - 01 déc. 2009 :  01:49:31  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Rick,

I assume you are in a car and not in a motorhome so you can not really answer questions about big rig routing.

Hopefully you will be able to show us breadcrumb trails from each of the devices along with comment on their ease of use in this regard.

Another facet that might be interesting is a comparison of how each device handles on-line route planning - that is, the use of Google maps and such

Enjoy your trip - we are about to depart on a 4 1/2 month 10,000 km round trip from Nova Scotia to the Rio Grande Valley in Texas. Our TomTom 930 will guide us and hopefully not lead us astray

Good luck,

P
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NanaimoRick

Canada
7889 Posts

Posted - 01 déc. 2009 :  01:55:16  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Yes, we are in a car. Sold our motorhome a few years back (wish I still owned it most days).

We'll certainly be looking at route planning and track logging. Been a fan of both with my various Nuvi models.

We used the 930 in our comparison in May 2008. It's a pretty good unit that kept us on track most of the time :)

Rick James - Nuvi Forum Moderator
Nuvi 350 - Nuvi 760 - Nuvi 1695LM - Nuvi 3790LMT (with ecoRoutes HD) - Nuvi 2460LMT - Nuvi 3597LMTHD (with ecoRoutes HD) - DriveLuxe 50LMTHD also TomTom 540S for side by side comparison >> Here <<
2016 Chevrolet Equinox LTZ 6 CYL AWD


Edited by - NanaimoRick on 01 déc. 2009 01:57:08
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John R

85 Posts

Posted - 02 déc. 2009 :  05:25:23  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Rick, looking forward to your reports. Back in October, on a trip to New Mexico and Colorado, my 1490 encountered routing freeze-ups almost every time I pulled off the road to refuel or whatever. This was solved by quickly reloading the route, but annoying nevertheless. There were also occasional reboots for no apparent reason, but I have come to expect this with most gps units. Possibly, these issues have been fixed in subsequent software upgrades, but I do not recall any mention of them in the release notes. I will be interested to hear your experiences.

Regards,
John Roper
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NanaimoRick

Canada
7889 Posts

Posted - 02 déc. 2009 :  05:45:40  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Nothing more annoying than freeze ups and reboots. Had lots of them with the TomTom 930 we compared in May 08. You'll certainly here from us if it happens with either of the devices this time.

Rick James - Nuvi Forum Moderator
Nuvi 350 - Nuvi 760 - Nuvi 1695LM - Nuvi 3790LMT (with ecoRoutes HD) - Nuvi 2460LMT - Nuvi 3597LMTHD (with ecoRoutes HD) - DriveLuxe 50LMTHD also TomTom 540S for side by side comparison >> Here <<
2016 Chevrolet Equinox LTZ 6 CYL AWD

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Captcaper

USA
393 Posts

Posted - 03 déc. 2009 :  15:13:01  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
This will be interesting as I wouldn't mind to jump ship from being a devoted Garmin man to TomTom as I'm not happy with any of the Nuvis I've tried. So I'm still using my SP 2720 for now.

Presently owned Dezl 760LMT Montana 600 2460lmt 1490T SP2610 SP2720 GPSMAP 276C GPSMAP 60CS NorthStar 951XD in the boat since 1996.
Previous owned Garmin 48,76cs,210. Nuvi 880,1490T.
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gpspassion

94645 Posts

Posted - 03 déc. 2009 :  21:48:06  Show Profile  Visit gpspassion's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Ah we now have the picture of the second "participant", nice wide screen it seems! If you get a chance before you leave some side by side pictures would be great.

Discounts and Assistance/Réductions et Assistance (Club GpsPasSion) / Où commencer?
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NanaimoRick

Canada
7889 Posts

Posted - 03 déc. 2009 :  22:35:35  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I'll try now that I have them setup in the vehicle. Man, two 5" screens take up a lot of windshield space!

One thing I noticed immediately was how much brighter the TomTom screen appears to be compared to what I remember of the 930 we had last year. Not as bright as the 1490 but pretty darn good. I also noticed that the sound on the Nuvi is much louder than the TomTom. Running them both at 50%, the Nuvi is about right for my ears but I can hardly hear the TomTom. I find we need to run the TomTom over 75% before it's loud enough for us.

Both units have 2Gb storage capacity but there is little spare space on either:



This screen shot was taken after installing the newest release of the TomTom maps and reviewing the storage drive in order to delete anything I didn't need. On the Nuvi we updated the maps from 2010.10 to .20, deleted all help, voice, text, and vehicle files just to get enough space to add Topo maps of Washington and Oregon. I know I could have put the maps on an MicroSD card but the card slot in the 1490 appears to be very dead and I don't have time to get a replacement unit. Even out of the box Windows 7 reported the free space on the Nuvi in RED with only about 136MB available.

Now once I get my head around the fact that a ROUTE on the Nuvi is an ITINERARY on the TomTom things should get better , particularly since there is also a thing called a ROUTE on the TomTom which basically lets you plan a 'start point' and 'destination' in advance, much like the Nuvi's Where To? - select a location - tap green bar on map screen - Show Map, feature.

Rick James - Nuvi Forum Moderator
Nuvi 350 - Nuvi 760 - Nuvi 1695LM - Nuvi 3790LMT (with ecoRoutes HD) - Nuvi 2460LMT - Nuvi 3597LMTHD (with ecoRoutes HD) - DriveLuxe 50LMTHD also TomTom 540S for side by side comparison >> Here <<
2016 Chevrolet Equinox LTZ 6 CYL AWD

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gpspassion

94645 Posts

Posted - 04 déc. 2009 :  02:37:44  Show Profile  Visit gpspassion's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Yes, TomTom has a simple A->B mode to see what a route not starting what your current location will look like, I actually prefer that to Garmin's "turn off GPS, set location on map" routine. For multiple stop planning though, Garmin's interface is much better than TomTom's as you can optimize stops and get a total ETA, on TomTom it's only to the next stop, unless you specify it as a "via". Handy tools for TomTom route planning would include TYRE and itnconvert. On the topic of route planning, TomTom has a great feature that can let you "bend" a route, using the via feature (tap on "alternate route" when you are navigating or in demo mode). It's great because you just enter the name of a town and it will adapt the route so as to, you don't have to specify an address as you have to do on a Garmin. It's harder to explain that to do ! An example : you're driving from San Jose to Monterey and want to use go via Santa Cruz, not down 101, so once you set out, just tap via/santa cruz and you're done.

Someone did comment in the TomTom section of the forums on how much brighter the XXL 530 and 540 screens where, good news, the GO x40 and x50 or the models currently available in Europe (the XXL is limited to some coutries) certainly didn't get any boost in that area, still ok unless you have the sun straight from the back or possibly in a convertible.

Discounts and Assistance/Réductions et Assistance (Club GpsPasSion) / Où commencer?
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alokeprasad

USA
25 Posts

Posted - 04 déc. 2009 :  12:39:41  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
nuMaps Lifetime North America 2010.30 was available Nov 19 2009. You still have time to update your maps on the Nuvi.
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NanaimoRick

Canada
7889 Posts

Posted - 04 déc. 2009 :  15:29:28  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Will be returning the current 1490 at some point because of the MicroSD problem, so I plan to wait until I get the new one before I sign up for Lifetime map updates. Thanks for the reminder though.

Rick James - Nuvi Forum Moderator
Nuvi 350 - Nuvi 760 - Nuvi 1695LM - Nuvi 3790LMT (with ecoRoutes HD) - Nuvi 2460LMT - Nuvi 3597LMTHD (with ecoRoutes HD) - DriveLuxe 50LMTHD also TomTom 540S for side by side comparison >> Here <<
2016 Chevrolet Equinox LTZ 6 CYL AWD

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Captcaper

USA
393 Posts

Posted - 04 déc. 2009 :  17:49:57  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
This Tom 540S I see is selling for $200.00 and the 1490T is selling for up to 450 or so depending if you can hit a sale. Even with the $60 fee for traffic with no ads this seems like a good deal for us from Tom Tom so I hope it performs well.

Presently owned Dezl 760LMT Montana 600 2460lmt 1490T SP2610 SP2720 GPSMAP 276C GPSMAP 60CS NorthStar 951XD in the boat since 1996.
Previous owned Garmin 48,76cs,210. Nuvi 880,1490T.
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NanaimoRick

Canada
7889 Posts

Posted - 04 déc. 2009 :  17:56:52  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Yes, it's priced well, at least in the US. In Canada we are looking at $350 for the 540S. You do have to remember that part of the price difference is that not only do you not get the traffic subscription, but you also don't get the receiver which sells for $99 from the TomTom website. In addition the 540S does not have bluetooth support like the 1490 and there is no SD or MicroSD slot so everything extra, including additional maps, that you want to put on the 540 has to fit on the internal storage. As you see from my post above, that additional storage space is limited.

Rick James - Nuvi Forum Moderator
Nuvi 350 - Nuvi 760 - Nuvi 1695LM - Nuvi 3790LMT (with ecoRoutes HD) - Nuvi 2460LMT - Nuvi 3597LMTHD (with ecoRoutes HD) - DriveLuxe 50LMTHD also TomTom 540S for side by side comparison >> Here <<
2016 Chevrolet Equinox LTZ 6 CYL AWD


Edited by - NanaimoRick on 04 déc. 2009 17:58:58
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Captcaper

USA
393 Posts

Posted - 04 déc. 2009 :  18:28:11  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
My POI files are about 16MB so I should have lot's or room left over.Don't care about Bluetooth. I see the $99 for the receiver doesn't include any subscription at all so it would be still more. No ads though. Still not bad..In US were looking at $360 or receiver and ad free subscription.

Presently owned Dezl 760LMT Montana 600 2460lmt 1490T SP2610 SP2720 GPSMAP 276C GPSMAP 60CS NorthStar 951XD in the boat since 1996.
Previous owned Garmin 48,76cs,210. Nuvi 880,1490T.
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