Goldwing Navigation System - to update or NOT to update...


Information and questions on GL1800 Goldwings (2001-Present)
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CruiseControl
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Motorcycle: 2007 GL1800

Goldwing Navigation System - to update or NOT to update...

Postby CruiseControl » Mon Aug 04, 2014 7:47 am



... that is the question!

I wish someone had written and I had read this post before I wasted my time. I'm sharing to save you the struggles.

I've finally made a decision about updating my 2007 Goldwing from the City Navigator North America V7, May 2005 map to the latest City Navigator North America NT 2013.10 available at http://garmin.com/goldwing.

The current price of the 2013.10 map is $95 + S&H. I figure that's about $15/year or if you consider that I bought my Wing used in 2009 that's $20.60/year. But what if there's an update next year, will I want that one? Of course that assumes there will be one… I couldn't get one when I first bought the bike.

I spent hours and hours weeding through various forums (Goldwing and GPS), including worthless posts arguing about whether or not a firmware update is copyrighted/free, then searching for the 4.70 version of the gupdate.gcd file and trying to figure out how to get an updated gmapsupp.img file which I found through the Open Street Map project (supported by various download sites) and finally testing it all.

If you find the "gupdate(4.7).gcd" file, it is easy to install. There doesn't appear to be any particular improvement to the UI; no new features or menu options. That was the main thing I hoped for. I'm told it fixes some redundant messages regarding recalculating and unverified routes; a problem I never had with v4.31 partly because I have Navi muted most of the time. From what I've read, I gather that the firmware update is necessary to access the new "NT" map format in the IMG file. When I realized the firmware didn't "fix" what I really wanted fixed, I should have given up. But more about that later.

The Open Street Map maps didn't work well on the bike. I couldn't use the option to Find an address. For some reason I was prompted for a Country and the letters on the input screen for that were disabled. They were also disabled for entering a City or State. I was able to use previously saved locations. So obviously the data is there. But the map didn't look as good as the City Navigator map. I'm sure there's some documentation about fixing those problems somewhere. But that's just more hours of research.

I read on one post that indicated City Navigator can create the IMG file. But even though I can get City Navigator at a discount because an agreement between Garmin and my employer, I cannot download it because the Garmin web site requires a connected device to confirm compatibility. Besides, I have concerns about getting one of the other versions (SD or DVD). Mainly, I wonder if I can get more map updates in later years. As far as I can tell at this point it seems like this isn't software but just the IMG file. If that's what it is I don't see any reason not to spend the extra few bucks to get the map designed and tested for my Wing by Garmin. The post also didn't mention whether the IMG file would fit on the 2GB Compact Flash that I'm now using. I have wondered whether the Wing hardware would support a 4GB CF. But then buying on of those just adds to the cost. The whole IMG update just got too complicated.

It wasn't until I was thinking of sharing my efforts that I realized that I should have started with two simple questions: 1) What are my minimum requirements for a GPS? 2) Can the GPS on the Wing meet those requirements? If only I had asked those questions when I realized the firmware update didn't meet my needs. Three requirements I have that Navi will never allow me to do: download a route from a PC, easily set up an ad hoc route while on a ride and show current altitude. I also want features like a warning when I'm out of range of a gas station on my planned route and maybe a TPMS. Why not a curvy route planner while I'm at it? How about an interface to a VIRB camera? Obviously I'm checking out the zūmo 390LM. I just wonder if I can make it fit over the on bike GPS.

It looks like I'll be investing $600+ on a GPS instead of $95 + S&H on a map update. With my discounts through work I can get a lot for $600+, plus I can get a version with lifetime map updates!

One thing that I'll miss about Navi is after a good night's sleep when I line up my bike on a long stretch of highway and she says things like "drive 278 miles then turn right". That gives me a chuckle every time. You know you're headed out on the open road when those are your instructions.

On last thing to consider. You laid out the extra money to buy a Wing with a GPS built in. If you like the way it works but need updated maps, you gotta ask yourself if you have turned too cheap to update them. I appreciate that the maps will still not have some roads or addresses. But that's the way it'll be with any navigation system.

At the beginning of this post I said I wish I had read something like it before I started trying to update Navi. But I have to admit, if you're like me you're thinking "screw you! It can't be that difficult. I'm going to try anyway." If so, please bookmark this post. After you have invested all the time managing a manual update and balanced the cost of a new chip from Garmin, please come back and reply to this post.

Shiny side up!



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tfdeputydawg
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Re: Goldwing Navigation System - to update or NOT to update.

Postby tfdeputydawg » Mon Aug 04, 2014 8:52 am

I bought one update some time ago, from another source(not Garmin)at a considerble cheaper price! Not much changed! With the difficultly of use of my 06 Nav. I desided not to update again!
Still "works" to get to where I want to go, when I take the time to input the route I want to take!

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themainviking
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Re: Goldwing Navigation System - to update or NOT to update.

Postby themainviking » Mon Aug 04, 2014 1:34 pm

The only thing I like about Honda's NAVI on the GL1800 is that I do not have to remove it and take it with me when I leave the bike, as it would be exceedingly difficult to remove and steal. Because of this, I update the maps. I am up to 2015.10, which is still probably two years old the day it was published. No, the CF carded NAVI will not accept a 4GB flash card, so one must learn how to make smaller maps in order to get the newer ones onto a 2GB card. This means building a map which does not include Mexico, the Canadian Arctic, Labrador, or any of the south sea islands, in order to keep it just below the 2GB target size, or building two maps and carrying both CF cards, using one for say Canada and Alaska, and the other for all the rest. I am running firmware 4.60, but if I was to find 4.70, I would probably use it. Other than that, my NAVI works for me in its limited way, which is good enough. A Zumo 590LM would probably be the cats meow, but I don't want another GPS to add to the confusion.

Thank you CruiseControl, for your insight.
It ain't about the destination - it's all about the journey

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93aspy
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Re: Goldwing Navigation System - to update or NOT to update.

Postby 93aspy » Sun Aug 10, 2014 11:54 pm

Personally, I think Honda REALLY stepped on their **** with the Navi in this bike, especially the earlier versions (pre 2012)... For that reason, I have a Garmin Zumo 665 on the handle bars of my 2009 in addition to the built in Navi... On mine (2009) I can't load in custom routes made from my computer and I don't like the fact that you can't make a route from the track log which I can do from my Zumo... And of course the most irritating of all is you can't make any changes while moving... Oh, and no Bluetooth either - really Honda???

That said, I just did a map update for another non-OEM source at a much, much, reduced cost and have been very happy with the new map set... I still use the bike Navi for displaying the map but my 665 Zumo with Lifetime Maps is the main GPS on my bike... I would not buy another bike with Honda Navi unless there were HUGE improvements over the existing models...

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JerriEric
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Re: Goldwing Navigation System - to update or NOT to update.

Postby JerriEric » Mon Aug 11, 2014 8:45 am

You can get current NT maps unlocked for free from Expressfiles. Only issue with non OEM maps is the POI's do not work. Wonder if the non OEM mapset bought from previous post has the POI's working? I only use the GPS if I get lost. It is a PITA to input a route. And my unit cannot take long routes. I get insufficient memory errors. Example route from Windham Maine to Sturgis SD. I had to break the route in half to get it to calculate. Garmin was no help. I did buy the latest 2011 mapset and updated firmware but still had the problem. I like it because it is built in. Now if I used a GPS allot of the time I would most likely hate it!

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theback80
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Re: Goldwing Navigation System - to update or NOT to update.

Postby theback80 » Wed Aug 13, 2014 12:51 pm

Before I got my 2012, all I ever used were paper maps (remember those?). The only reason I got the VAVI was it was a year old demo bike. I couldn't pass up the savings. Having the NAVI does make for a safer ride. And no more missed turns. Actually I still miss a lot of turns, but now I'm told about it right away instead of noticing miles later. :D
Outside of that, I don't really see the benefit. Some of my best trips have been when I've been lost. I guess I'm getting too old for all this technology stuff.

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themainviking
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Re: Goldwing Navigation System - to update or NOT to update.

Postby themainviking » Wed Aug 13, 2014 1:43 pm

theback80 wrote: I guess I'm getting too old for all this technology stuff.


I have heard it said "if you think you are old or if you think you are not old - you are correct"
It ain't about the destination - it's all about the journey

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JerriEric
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Re: Goldwing Navigation System - to update or NOT to update.

Postby JerriEric » Wed Aug 13, 2014 3:00 pm

Gps is good for long slab trips but the wife and I still prefer maps. There are not many trips that are planned without deveating from the proposed path. And the screen does not show what a map shows (overall view of the state/area). At least the OEM nav does not.

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jinx
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Re: Goldwing Navigation System - to update or NOT to update.

Postby jinx » Fri Sep 05, 2014 12:12 pm

themainviking

Have you found V4.70. If not I can get it to you u=in a couple of weeks. Sorry on the road and wont have access to it or internet until I get back home.
Did you try 4gb cf card. Another poster said his with V4.70 read and loaded 4gb CF but could not see the details ?

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JerriEric
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Re: Goldwing Navigation System - to update or NOT to update.

Postby JerriEric » Fri Sep 05, 2014 1:33 pm

If by details you mean the POI's and if the maps are not directly from Garmin that makes sense. You can load NT maps that are not bought from Garmin but the POI's will not work. Believe me, I have fooled with is stuff for a long time. I do nave the 4.7 firmware but went back to my 2011 maps I bought from Garmin to get the POI's to function. You can get current maps from Express files site. I was running the 2014.1 maps from a download from that site. They worked fine but POI's did not work.

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themainviking
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Re: Goldwing Navigation System - to update or NOT to update.

Postby themainviking » Sun Sep 07, 2014 3:43 pm

jinx wrote:themainviking

Have you found V4.70. If not I can get it to you u=in a couple of weeks. Sorry on the road and wont have access to it or internet until I get back home.
Did you try 4gb cf card. Another poster said his with V4.70 read and loaded 4gb CF but could not see the details ?


No jinx, I have not found 4.7 yet. I believe if the poster said he loaded a 4Gb CF card but could not see the details, then the map did not in fact load. I still think a 2Gb is the max these units will accept, so I have started making my maps differently as I had mentioned somewhere - maybe here, maybe not. I make maps with no outlying territories like the islands, Mexico, the Canadian territories or Labrador. I probably will not drive there anyway. This gets them down to 1.9 again. Another method might be to load two cards with maps. One for Canada and Alaska and one for everything south of the Canadian border, thereby having access to both by carrying both cards. Cross the border, first stop, switch cards.
It ain't about the destination - it's all about the journey

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JerriEric
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Re: Goldwing Navigation System - to update or NOT to update.

Postby JerriEric » Sun Sep 07, 2014 6:16 pm

Not sure what maps you are using but I downloaded 2014.1 maps a year ago and they worked in my '06 with firmware 4.7. As I stated before, if you do not buy the update from garmin and use other maps, the POI's will not work. But I never used POI's anyway. I running the maps on a 2gb cf card.

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themainviking
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Re: Goldwing Navigation System - to update or NOT to update.

Postby themainviking » Mon Sep 08, 2014 7:23 am

2014.40 and 2015.10 both originally made maps too large for the card. After trimming out some places and remaking them I managed to get them on a 2Gb CF card. I, however, still do not have Version 4.7 of the firmware. I still have not found that a 4Gb card can be recognized. When only maps show up with no detail, it usually means that the firmware is providing the outline, and the actual maps are not loaded.
It ain't about the destination - it's all about the journey

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Auggie
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Re: Goldwing Navigation System - to update or NOT to update.

Postby Auggie » Mon Sep 08, 2014 11:55 am

We have always used maps and a Garmin portable GPS. We find on the 2013 the GPS is difficult to use and would not purchase a bike with it again. About the only thing I like is the compass. I think Honda could have done a much better job with this option. For me no updates.

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JerriEric
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Re: Goldwing Navigation System - to update or NOT to update.

Postby JerriEric » Mon Sep 08, 2014 6:08 pm

Problem is you cannot get ABS without the GPS unless Honda changed that since '06.

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themainviking
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Re: Goldwing Navigation System - to update or NOT to update.

Postby themainviking » Sat Sep 13, 2014 12:51 pm

Nope, no change to that system. Everything comes in packages. Comfort package, Sound package and Safety package. Thanks for the 4.7 update JerriEric.


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