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Reviewed : Mio C520 HD
Posté le 30 avril 2007 à 22:43:13 par gpspassion.

REVIEWED - MIO 2007 AIOs : C320/C320T/C520/C520T
4.3 HD Screen - MioMap v3.3 - "Slim" Form Factor - Split Screen

C320T : TMC
C520 : MP3, Pictures, Hands Free, Stereo Bluetooth
C520T : C520 + TMC

The new family of Mio AIOs was first shown at the CES show in January 2007, see this thread, then announced officially at CeBIT in March. Come mid-April and the first models are available in Europe, the C320 and C520t. They have yet to appear on the Mio USA website, but so is the C220 already available in stores and discussed here so hopefully it will soon be the case. I received a C520t test unit this week and will share a detailed picture review with a "pros" and "cons" analysis.


As always with Mio, the packaging is elaborate and the accessories plentiful

"Slim" is in !

The new car holder is very convenient provided you can leave it in place at all times
as it has the power and RDS TMC connectors.

The C520T reminder me of the Thomson Intuiva 420 but it's even thinner

Compared to the Mio C710 (same casing as Mio C310x)
Note that the brightness on the C520T was set to 50% in this picture

Ending the hardware part with the casing.

[size=3]2. THE SOFTWARE[/size=3]

iGO in its first "wide" version (other than the Mappy ITI in France)


Free navigation comes with a superb speed dial (with a red dot for the speed limit) or a navigation information pane
MioMap has been updated to v3.3 and the maps are TeleAtlas 2007.01


With a trip planned, you can put the map in full screen mode, but you lose the navigation data

The four navigation tabs :
1. Navigation info
2. Nearby POIs
3. TMC Traffic events
4. The route list


MioMap v3.3 is close to MioMap v3.2, and has mostly been updated to take advantage of the "wide" HD screen format. This has been done cleverly, with more information being displayed and improved ergonomics. In comparison TomTom did not change the interface when they switched from the SD to the HD format and Garmin only marginally.

An "intelligent" keyboard that shows only the possible letters when you enter an address

You can now avoid a road or segment when you tap on the route list

More TMC details, see below

Not in MioMap, but the main interface now has "File Explorer" to manage media files


The TMC traffic information is visible directly from the main navigation screen.

1. Clicking on the GPS/TMC icons pulls up the usual list
2. The RDS tuner has the same excellent sensitivity as on the C710 model
3. The usual settings

1/2. Events are numbered on the map
3. route optimization comes up with good decisions...
4. ...but can't be turned off, a bug ?


    1. THE PROS "+"

  1. Superb design : the C520T is the smartest AIO to date in my opinion and follows in the steps of the Europe only Thomson Intuiva 420, with its sophisticated design. The C520t is light in an extra-slim format, making it easy to carry it around. The flip side is the lack of buttons that made it easy to set the volume on the C310x/C710, now you have to hunt through several menus.

  2. Convenient and Amplified Car holder : if you can leave the car holder mounted at all times, you'll enjoy "drop-in" navigation as it has power and TMC connectors, like the Nuvi 660T mount. Unique to the C520t's mount is the built-in loudspeaker that helps the on-board loudspeaker of the unit.

  3. Smart "HD" update of MioMap : as can be seen above, the added screen real estate has been put to good use, either to show more navigation information or to improve the ergonomics of the interface. In comparison, neither TomTom not Garmin have leveraged the extra space other than to show a wider map. The "free navigation" mode with the realistic speedometer that indicates the speed limit (when available) with a red dot is impressive. I do miss the lack of navigation information when the map is switched to full screen for better "immersion" in the immediate environment.

  4. GPS Performance : in spite of the reduced overall size, GPS performance remains good. Some detailed testing will be done later, but no "cold fix" problems when driving out in the morning.

  5. Bluetooth stereo : only seen on the TomTom GO910 previously, you can listen to music on a bluetooth stereo headset (I used the Globalsat BH-820) in the best quality I've seen so far from a mobile device (PDAPhones, GO910) with no "hiss". The sound did cut out occasionally, so this will have to be revisited

    2. THE CONS "-"

  1. Choppy voice prompts : possibly an "early version" bug, but the voice prompts tend to stutter and jump into each other.

  2. Interface Freezes : a bit like what had been noted on the GO910, it seems the 70% extra screen resolution (480x272 vs 320x240) is taking its toll on the CPU with some "freezes" when you navigate from one menu to the other. This affects the main interface mostly (MP3, Settings, etc...), not MioMap, so GPS navigation should not be affected.

  3. Limited TMC controls : while the new interface makes it easier to visualize the traffic events and provides more details, the controls are still basic compared to what is offered on the Garmin or TomTom units where you can get delay estimates, avoid specific events on your route. The Mio insists on optimizing trips automatically which can be a problem when faced with traffic information that has expired.

  4. Proprietary Car and AC chargers: the C520t and the car holder both sport a standard miniUSB connector but if you use a standard charger, the C520t will switch to a "PC Connection" mode, very much like Garmin units, so make sure you don't lose the cables that come with the unit and since the C320 does not come with an AC charger you'll need to buy the Mio model.

  5. TMC only works if the car holder is powered and if you were using the C520t outside of its cradle, you'll need to relaunch MioMap to have it recognized

If you have questions or comments, you can use this thread of the forums.

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