Let me preface this review by being up front and let you know that I am biased towards Garmin. I have used many different manufactures GPS units in airplanes and on the road and I have found no brand that I prefer over Garmin.
The Zumo 550 is an awesome unit and Garmin has made it so simple to use even with gloves on. With the large buttons, large text and bright screen it is so easy to make changes while driving down the road. The box has most everything you will need to mount the unit and more. This unit can be found for a street price of around $750.
The above photo is the contents of the box. From left to right top to bottom here is what they are.
- - Automobile windshield suction mount with cigarette lighter adapter
- Motorcycle mount power cord
- Motorcycle mount
- USB cord for transferring data to and from you GPS with a computer
- AC power cord
- Motorcycle mounting hardware (for mounting on my scooter I needed 2 extra parts)
- Dashboard sticky disk so that you can use the suction cup mount on a dashboard instead of a windshield
- ZUMO 550 GPS with rechargeable battery
- Security screwdriver to lock the GPS into the motorcycle mount
- Black top and bottom replacement caps for the GPS. You can also buy other colors.
- Screws to mount ram mount to the back of the motorcycle mount
- 2" ram mount arm
- Ram mount plate to be attached to motorcycle mount
Mounting the GPS to my Vespa GTS and Suzuki Burgman 650
On the Vespa GTS250 I had to also get a RAM-B-231ZU and a RAP-319 to mount it to my mirror. These can be bought at GPSCITY for less than $20 delivered. http://www.gpscity.com/item-ram-mount-zinc-coated-rail-u-bolt-base-with-1''-ball/ramb231zinc.htm This would be the same mounting for a Vespa LX or GT200 as well.
On the Burgman 650 I used a SUZUKI RESERVOIR COVER with a Single Ram Mount Ball from Motorcycle Larry http://www.motorcyclelarry.com/SUZRC.aspx
On both scooters I ran the power cable down to a switched battery source so that the GPS automatically turns off and on when I turn on and off the scooter. To make life simpler, I did buy a second motorcycle mounting plate & motorcycle power cable from Garmin so that it is easy to move from one scooter to the other.
The features that I really like:
The Motorcycle Mount is awesome, it allows easy install and removal of the GPS without having to plug and unplug wires. They do provide you with a special screwdriver to lock the GPS into the mount but that is a waste as a thief could just as easily undo the ram mount thumb screw with only 5 seconds extra work.
The Bright Screen - this is the easiest screen to read in sunlight that I have ever seen on any GPS.
Text to Voice - the voice prompts are very clear and the street name pronunciation is the best of any GPS I have heard.
Large buttons - I don't have to remove my gloves to operate the GPS
Built in Data - Only if I go to Europe do I need to add maps to this GPS as North America is built in.
Bluetooth - I don't have to have a loud blaring speaker giving me my voice prompts, I just attach a Scala Rider to my current helmet and I hear the voice prompts inside the helmet. Bluetooth also works for my cell phone and yes, I have tried it at highway speeds and it works just fine but phone use isn't a high requirement or need on my want list. The way the phone works is the phone talks to the GPS and the GPS talks to the headset. By doing this, I answer and make calls with the GPS; the complete contact list in my phone is displayed on the GPS allowing me to search my contact list with the GPS. The connectivity between the Phone and GPS has a lot more bells and whistles that I have yet to explore.
XM Radio - with the addition of an XM Antenna (picture bellow) you can have XM Radio inside your helmet (cable required between GPS and helmet) or with the car mount. I have played with the XM Radio using the car mount but I'm waiting for either a new device for my current helmet or to buy a Nolan helmet to be able to listen to the music on the scooter. The XM antenna is an option that will cost around $200 plus monthly fees.
The features I found lacking:
Info on the screen - In other Garmin's that I have used you can change the data fields that are displayed on the screen. With this unit there is no customization available. I personally like to know my elevation and distance to destination of which neither is available to me. You are given Estimated Time of Arrival but not distance to travel. You are also given the distance to the next turn. The data that is available is shown in the following 2 images.
Bluetooth Issue - My phone keeps loosing sinc with the GPS about ever 10 minutes and then it resincs in a matter of seconds.[img][/img][img][/img]
Last edited by cfargo on Mon Dec 25, 2006 7:11 pm; edited 2 times in total