Abby's Guide to Global Positioning Systems
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Magellan RoadMate 700

If you are looking for a high quality system, this IVNS is accurate, user-friendly with a touch screen, and offers clear voice instructions as well as text directions. The Roadmate 700 is small, weighing in at 13 ounces with a 2.25 by 3 inch screen that adjusts to the available light, making sunny day or dark of night viewing just as easy.

The RoadMate 700 has all the mapping information right on its 20 GB hard drive for ease in set up, and offers yearly updates that you can download to a compact flash card, and place it in the RoadMate for more current maps. It offers an option of three users with different destinations, making it a good option for a family with more than one car and driver. Other perks include onscreen data such as signal strength, your compass direction, the distance to your next turn and time and distance measurements for a more accurate response to "Are we there yet?" There are POI, or points of interest, included so you can check out the closest gas station or campground. Perhaps more importantly, there is a position finding function, so if you need help, the RoadMate will supply you with your exact location to give to the police or tow truck.

You can mount the Roadmate via a suction cup onto the windshield and plug the 12 volt adapter into your cigarette lighter for instant power. You are able to hear the directions as well as see them on the display in text form or in 3-D and if you somehow miss them, there is a replay button.

RoadMate 300 is Magellan's budget answer to consumers ready to take the GPS plunge, costing almost half of its pricier sibling. It is a slimmer version that relies more on menus (including a volume option rather than the simple and easier manual volume control). There is a headphone jack however that keeps you from disturbing the passengers.

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