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4.3
38 reviews
Other GPS Devices:
  • Average: 4.2
  • High: 5.0
Type:
Portable Car GPS
Brand:
Garmin
Model:
010-00455-00
Garmin nuvi 350 Portable GPS Navigator

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Garmin nuvi 350 Portable GPS Navigator
 
4.3

(based on 38 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (19)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (13)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (5)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (1)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (0)

95%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

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Cons

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Best Uses

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Most Liked Positive Review

 

I Once Was Lost, But Now Am Found. My GPS, How Sweet!

Back in the good ole' days out of college - no mortgage, no family.  When 100% of my post-bar-tab take-home pay was disposable, I would have gladly plunked down the...Read complete review

Back in the good ole' days out of college - no mortgage, no family.  When 100% of my post-bar-tab take-home pay was disposable, I would have gladly plunked down the dough for a GPS. But one day I realized how much money I'd been wasting on these unnecessary electronics purchases. I considered whether the thing I wanted actually helped me in some way, or if it was just another thing to show off to friends. At the time, had I lost my job and my landlord not taken old digital cameras or used PDA's for rent, I'd have been in big trouble. So somehow or another, I saw the error of my ways and I came to my senses. I held off on rabid consumer electronics purchases, and I turned over a new leaf....... oh yeah, I also got married. Goodbye cool gadgets, hello *another* shoe rack in the closet.So basically, I had been putting off buying a portable GPS system. I mean, it's not that I needed one; I'm a guy - guys don't get lost. But just in case I ever were lost, hypothetically speaking, I thought a GPS might be a nice thing to have... for the wife's peace of mind.So with my ‘leaf turning' experience and other buying ‘restrictions', I waited. I was looking for JUST the right combination of price, features, function, and need (permission). Everything I looked at was too expensive, unintuitive, or bulky. The good ones were outrageously overpriced. The bad ones were made only for professional land surveyors, because unless you could see map coordinates in your head, they weren't exactly user friendly.**Impetus**Then something changed; we moved to beautiful Northern the Virginia/Washington DC area. If you've never been to the Virginia/DC area, you should visit. It's very scenic and very historic. But if you weren't born there and tried to drive a vehicle there without a local tour guide, chances are you wouldn't be reading this because you would still be lost or stuck in traffic.To describe the roads there, on most weekends we would go out for the day on Saturday, and we'd be lucky to make it back in time for work on Monday. We kept extra clothes and a tent in the trunk. (Ok I exaggerated the tent - we have ‘rewards' at a few hotel chains). So we resorted to printing maps to and from every destination beyond a two square mile radius from home. I kid you not. We printed point-to-point directions, both ways, for every trip. Tedious, but better than nothing.Soon we found that being reliant on printed directions in certain parts of the DC metro is like parachuting with no reserve. Streets have three or four names each. State, county, city, number, common name, local slang etc... Google may know what it's called 5 miles away, but where you ARE, the signs say nothing similar. Then, with all the one-way streets, highways and byways, once you're off the map, you are **off** the map. And if you miss an exit... you'll be home next Thursday.**Miracle of Miracles**Then one day friends from Florida came to visit. They introduced us to what I can only refer to now as a 'gift from God'. The God of Garmin. And this great Garmin God had bestowed upon our friends a gift of amazing knowledge and wisdom. A gift of geography, restaurants, and shopping! It was the Nuvi 350, and Garmin saw that it was good.After 2 days of riding with our friends as they easily navigated **our** area (reminder: DC) with their Nuvi 350, we were sold. And I mean *sold*. My wife actually asked me when we were going to get one. Yay! (When the wife suggests that you buy an electronic gadget, knowing full well it isn't cheap...that my friends, is truly divine intervention!) **A Little Research** I set to work immediately re-researching GPS's. To aid my search, by coincidence, the following week I was out of state in a rental car for business. The car had a GPS in it from Alpine. I can't remember the model; probably the low end, but simply put, it was a stinker. It lost signal, confused streets, and was hard to understand (we turned off the voice prompts for sanity, then we gave up and turned it off).So Alpine was out. Then I saw a television add for the cutesy one, the Tomtom, but it just seemed too... cutesy. I couldn't get my mind off the Nuvi. It did everything we needed, and we got to see it in action. The reviews were good and it was highly rated by a major rating organization. So it was decided, the Nuvi 350 it would be. It wasn't exactly the newest device on the market, but the price was finally, almost, reasonable and when I found one that hit my range, I bought it!**The Form** The dimensions of the Nuvi 350 by Garmin:*3.87" wide *2.91" high *0.87" deep (or 98.3 x 73.9 x 22.1 cm) Following the ‘simplicity is best' model, the unit is clean with nothing protruding when the antenna is tucked away. On the side of the unit, it has a slot for a Secure Digital card, as well as a plug for the USB/charger, and a headphone jack. On top it has an inset power button. Behind, are a speaker, and a clever antenna design. The antenna folds back when the GPS function isn't needed, but it swivels up at various lock points to 180 degrees. This allows it to be facing directly skywards when in use either mounted on the windshield or held horizontally when walking. **In Use: Navigating** The primary function of the Nuvi 350, the one for which I bought it: getting from point A to point B, is exactly what I was hoping it would be. It does this quickly, accurately, and without a lot of fuss, and it even allows detours if desired.

The learning curve for the Nuvi is small. In normal operation there are only 3 main menu options which are easily visible allowing you to keep attention on the road. The options are: ‘Where to?', ‘View Map', and ‘Travel Kit'. There are also two small icons for ‘Settings' and ‘Adjust' on the side, purposely off of center. To go somewhere, you simply turn it on, open the antenna so it can get your position, and hit the ‘Where to?' option. It then gives you 6 colorful, large, labeled icons representing places you might want to go, and even more options on the next screen. You select the item you want, hit ‘Go', and you're off! The menu turns into a 3D map with a car in the middle (you can download other vehicle icons from garmin.com). The default point of view is from that of a camera following you from behind. As you drive, the map moves with you. You can zoom in and out to get a better picture of the surrounding area. You can get a birds eye view as well, or a constant north view where the car moves and the map is static. Regardless of the display preference, your route is clearly highlighted. If you tap the screen while en-route, it switches to a condensed mode, showing the entire route from start to finish if zoomed out. If you tap the top area of the screen, it gives you a list of all your next upcoming turns.On the lower left of the screen is a current speed reading. If you tap on the speed indicator, the screen turns into a little cartoon dashboard. The dashboard contains a visual speedometer, a compass, and more trip counters than you could possibly need. There's a counter for: -Overall Average speed -Moving average speed -Max speed -Total time -Moving time -Stopped time While driving the Nuvi 350 gives you voice prompts that clearly alert you about turns that are coming up. The voice is realistic and easily understood (depending on which voice you select). Not only does it alert you about a turn when you arrive, it gives you ample warning that the turn is approaching up to two or three times before you get to the turn. Once you've made the turn, it tells you what the next thing you'll be looking for is, even if it's still far off. Then the consecutive warnings will alert you again once you're closer. It's almost as if the Garmin people listened in to my wife directing me from our Google maps. It mimics precisely how she gives me directions when I ask for them. Also if we're on a long stretch of road, I may ask my wife about how far it is until the next turn. With the Nuvi, always present is a note about your next turn. It shows how far the turn is, and which direction. If you need more detail, you press that area on the lower right, and it switches to a detailed map view of the next turn such as an intersection or exit ramp, and it tells you what the instructions will be. **Accuracy** There is a small bar graph signal strength indicator in the top left portion of the display like a cell phone signal indicator. It tells you the overall signal strength from the satellites. If you press it, a reference map of the sky appears. In it, each GPS satellite is shown. The satellite is green if the device has locked onto the signal, and grey if it hasn't. On the right side, it shows a list of those satellites and the signal strength of each one. Also in this view, on the top of the screen, it gives you the current accuracy level in feet (more satellites locked = more accurate). This view also gives your current altitude from sea level. When you first open the antenna to activate the receiver, it takes about a minute for it to lock-on to enough signals to have high accuracy. In the satellite view, as each one comes online, you can watch the accuracy increase as the feet decrease. In the open, without a lot of surrounding obstructions, the best accuracy I've seen so far has been about 10 feet. This apparently is about as good as it gets for civilian GPS systems with WAAS enabled which is built in (more on WAAS http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wide_Area_Augmentation_System). **Location, Location** Forget the technology wizardry of the GPS system, forget the voice prompts, the maps, etc... the Nuvi 350 is also a portable phone book. It contains many, many, points of interest pre-loaded for your area. There seems to be no business or establishment that this little device doesn't have. The points are interest are categorized by type of establishment. There are many types. Here's the built in categories: *Food*, *Lodging*, *Fuel*, *Attractions*, *Shopping*, *Parking*, *Entertainment*, *Intersections*, *Recreation*, *Transit*, *Community*, *Cities*, *Hospitals* and *Auto Services*. Then there are categories you can search on: *Address*, *Name*, or *Coordinates*. Plus you have a quick link to your favorites under ‘My locations'. Under these, you can set your ‘Home' location which is nice. To get back, you just go to Favorites, Home, and you're on your way. **Additional Features** As if there weren't enough, many other features are available. One being the **Garmin Lock**. This is a security function where you type in a secret code and set a location. The device can only be unlocked with that code. If you forget that code, you can unlock the device by taking it to your secret location. Useless if you're out of town, but better than having to send it back to them if you forget your code (their recommended solution). Under the ‘Travel Kit' option there are: **Language Guide**: (Sample included) Translates from English to many other languages. Choose the phrase, it will say it, and say the translation. **Travel Guide**: (Sample included) Gives interesting points of reference with detail for specific cities. But instead of just location and direction, it gives a description as well as Fodors reviews for each item. **Saver Guide**: (not included). Not sure what this does. Coupons or something possibly. It's not included, and I haven't been motivated to buy it yet. There's a reference to (http://www.garmin.com/products/nuvi click on Accessories) **MP3 Player**: Fully functioning MP3 player with nice sound quality. Can hold many songs internally, or on a SD card you can insert. **Audible Book Player**: You can buy books from Audible.com and have the read to you. Has a book marking feature. **Picture viewer**: Can view digital pictures on the screen. The quality isn't too bad, but it's not the best quality I've seen in an LCD. The screen serves it's purpose very well for maps and navigation, but it's nice to use to show people your pictures. **World Clock**: View of world current times. Tokyo, Sydney, Moscow, and Cairo. I can't see an option for other cities, but it also gives you the current time where you are, and the option to switch time format and zones. There's also a world map which is interesting to look at. It shows which parts of the world are in day or night with a red dot on your location. **Currency Converter**: Convert many currencies to many currencies. You can manually update the current exchange rate. It tells you when the last time the rate was updated. **Measurement Converter**: Convert units of type: Area, Distance, Speed, Temperature, Volume, or Weight to another unit of the same type. **Calculator**: Basic calculator functions. **Traffic Reciever**: (Not included). Apparently you can purchase a receiver that listens to local traffic signals if they are available in your area. It can use these signals to route you around traffic hotspots.**Drawbacks** Last but not least, these are the items I wish were improved or which I have a gripe about. Obviously these were not at the top of the review, so you probably have my general impression of how I feel overall. -The non-navigation menu options are not entirely intuitive. Basically, all non-navigational options are under ‘Travel Kit', so if you're not thinking ‘Travel' and you just want to listen to your MP3's, you have to look there. -Finding how to set the home location. You may find yourself fumbling around trying to find how to set your home location. You have to remember to go to where to, my locations, when initially I was trying to go under settings. -It takes a little while to lock on to satellites initially. You need up to 3 satellites to get a position, and it may take more than a minute sometimes. -The processor/CPU isn't quite as fast as it could be because it takes a little while to calculate your route. It also takes a while for pictures in the viewer to come up, and for translations, or detours, or anything else it has to ‘think' about. It's not that it's slow, but it's not as quick as it should be. -Battery life isn't amazing, but it's sufficient. We only let it discharge all the way one time, but it lasted about 4 hours. When it's down to that last battery bar, you really only have about 10 minutes left. -Garmin does not let you update maps continuously for free. Supposedly you're allowed 1 map update after your purchase if one is available, but I haven't tried yet. The rest you have to buy. -Garmin does allow you to update your device software for free as new versions are available. The downloadable update wizard is very quick and easy to use.**Additional Accessories in the box** -Leather case, car charger, a/c charger, windshield mount with heavy duty suction pad (The mount works VERY well. Very good design, simple use, solid mounting), detailed instructions, a registration card containing your web number on it, and some related material for the services featured.

****

Copyright (C) 2008 Customeright

VS

Most Liked Negative Review

 

Good entry level GPS

I've been using my Garmin Nuvi 350 GPS for over a year now (until it broke recently) and have been generally pleased with it. First off, the device is very easy to...Read complete review

I've been using my Garmin Nuvi 350 GPS for over a year now (until it broke recently) and have been generally pleased with it. First off, the device is very easy to use, with easy to navigate menus and generally (about 85% of the time) can find the exact location you are going to. However, I have been on a few wild goose chases with this thing when it tried to send me on a golf cart path across a golf course in Fort Lauderdale.

Now, all kidding aside, this GPS has performed very well and I like the fact that it is very light and the suction device that holds it to the windshield works well. I rarely have it fall off like I did with older, heavier GPS receivers.

My only complaint is that the receiver takes a while to start up and search for a signal. This can be an inconvenience when you are at an airport and need to get somewhere right away and have to wait for this thing to turn on.

Lastly, after a year and a half I believe the antennae gave out and now it can't find a signal. Unfortuantely it is out of the one year warranty so I now have a lovely door stop!

Reviewed by 38 customers

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5.0

Good little GPS

By 

from Chesapeake, VA

Comments about Garmin nuvi 350 Portable GPS Navigator:

This is the first one I have ever owned. Still works great! It did not come with lifetime map updates (which are expensive), so we got another Garmin nuvi that does have that feature. But this one is still a nice model and reliable 90% of the time, so we use it as our backup when needed.

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3.0

Good but pricey

By 

from New Portland, ME

Comments about Garmin nuvi 350 Portable GPS Navigator:

I used this product as a friend had it and found it easy to use, navigate and find the information I was looking for. The colors are vibrant and the options allow you to customize directions. It is portable which is a great feature, light weight. Garmin is an especially good brand for gps systems but be mindful that for this price you are not limited to this brand. Many options are available!

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5.0

Smart Choice

By 

from Central Square, NY

Comments about Garmin nuvi 350 Portable GPS Navigator:

I find my Garmin to provide me with reliable directions. It announces street names rather than distance, giving you added security that you will be going where you need to be. The view is simple to understand and calculate. The MP3 player is a nice addition when traveling through areas with no reception. Very compact and easy to carry with you. Definitely a smart choice in GPS systems.

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5.0

One of the nicest gifts I've ever received.

By 

from Tacoma, WA

Comments about Garmin nuvi 350 Portable GPS Navigator:

My brother is addicted to finding the newest talking maps around. This was one of the first he bought, and six months later-- when he upgraded-- it was regifted out by order of "how often do my family members get lost?"

Outstanding. It's simple enough to operate that you can program it for basic things at a stoplight, it has a decent selection of voices, you can add locations and get points of interest from people online (being a service family, we're often looking for this or that military base, especially on vacation; the free lists that people put out are incredibly useful!) for just about everything. This is even useful around your own home area-- I had no idea there were so many tour gardens so close! You can even slip it in your purse and go exploring if you're in a new area.

There are a decent number of voices, but the new ones from the Garmin site don't work with this system. Traffic is an optional update. You can upload your own images and sounds, although the speakers aren't any good for music. New maps cost you, the business listing isn't exaustive, and their maps are only as good as what the locations themselves report. (We found two or three roads that are there on the ground, but not in the machine, and two on the map, but not physically there; in the case of one of those roads, even the city's map has a road running right through the buildings and three foot stone cliff. If you have trouble keeping the machine up on the windshield, try locating it on the dark/shaded strip that's even or above the mirror. Since doing that, it hasn't fallen off a single time. Or you could not be lazy like me, and set up the lovely little plastic mount on the dash itself. Be sure to clean the dash very well!

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4.0

Garmin gets you there

By 

from Minneapolis, MN

Comments about Garmin nuvi 350 Portable GPS Navigator:

I have had the Garmin for around 2 years now. It does its job and gets you to the location. Sometimes I question the routes it takes though but it eventually gets you there. Sometimes getting reception takes forever and you have to drive a bit in the direction you should be going and hope that you get reception soon. Once you have reception the device does do a good job calculating the route. It does not take too long for the calculation and the recalculating is pretty fast too if you miss a turn. I like how this GPS tells you the road in its verbal directions. It is pretty small and compact and you can take it anywhere with you. Sometimes I take it when I am walking becuase it can still be helpful as a nagivation tool with its maps. It is pretty easy to use and its touch screen feature is nice. You can maximize and minimize your map and there are other features that you can use too. The database gets old fast and it is not as reliable as it gets older, as with any other GPS without downloading new data.

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5.0

Garmin Nuvi 350 best GPS unit of all time

By 

from East Elmhurst, NY

Comments about Garmin nuvi 350 Portable GPS Navigator:

Bought the Garmin Nuvi 350 GPS quite awhile ago and after using quite a few other models here and there I can hands down tell you that this is the best one out there ever. Because of its perfect size, not widescreen, its perfect for portability. The widescreen models I find are a little to big to fit in a pocket while this one is able to easily. This is of course necessary and important because we don't want to be leaving them inside the vehicle. The features on this particular Garmin Nuvi GPS model are terrific such as the speech of street names instead of telling you to turn at a certain amount of feet, whoever knows how far exactly that is?! This unit is usually quick to calculate addresses except when you take it with you in flight to another city. At those times it can take quite awhile for the satellite to catch up to your location but still this unit is great for when you travel and renting a vehicle. So overall, this is an oldie but a goodie!

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5.0

A Good Travel Companion

By 

from Fredericksburg, VA

Comments about Garmin nuvi 350 Portable GPS Navigator:

I have owned the Garmin Nuvi 350 for almost four years now and it has never let me down. It attaches well to the windshield and usually stays put. Once in a while when the weather is changing and temperatures are fluctuating it will fall down, but it's generally not a problem. It's very easy to input an address or search for a place and the navigation is excellent. The voice works very well and I can always understand what it's telling me. The only issues I ever have are are user error. The only navigation issues it's ever have been with were times when a store was in a big shopping center and all of the stores share the same address. The GPS can be connected to a computer to download coordinates for things like geocaching and even though this is a driving GPS I have successfully found hundreds of geocaches with it. Even in the woods it is very accurate and it takes lot of interference to kill the signal. Once in a while I have to restart the device before it will find enough signal, but that's usually not a problem.

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3.0

Good entry level GPS

By 

from Chicago, IL

Comments about Garmin nuvi 350 Portable GPS Navigator:

I've been using my Garmin Nuvi 350 GPS for over a year now (until it broke recently) and have been generally pleased with it. First off, the device is very easy to use, with easy to navigate menus and generally (about 85% of the time) can find the exact location you are going to. However, I have been on a few wild goose chases with this thing when it tried to send me on a golf cart path across a golf course in Fort Lauderdale.

Now, all kidding aside, this GPS has performed very well and I like the fact that it is very light and the suction device that holds it to the windshield works well. I rarely have it fall off like I did with older, heavier GPS receivers.

My only complaint is that the receiver takes a while to start up and search for a signal. This can be an inconvenience when you are at an airport and need to get somewhere right away and have to wait for this thing to turn on.

Lastly, after a year and a half I believe the antennae gave out and now it can't find a signal. Unfortuantely it is out of the one year warranty so I now have a lovely door stop!

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(1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

 
4.0

The Garmin Nuv!350 is a good basic GPS system.

By 

from Anderson, SC

Comments about Garmin nuvi 350 Portable GPS Navigator:

I have found the Garmin Nuv!350 GPS system to be an overall reliable product.  It is a nice compact unit.

There have been a few instances where it did not indicate far enough ahead to make a turn.  This was rather disconcerting traveling in another state when I was relying on the system to direct me.  I also was not pleased to have to purchase the data sync cable for updates.  One would think that would come with the unit.  The manufacturers should have included more detailed instructions.

 

 

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4.0

Good GPS which leads you to your destination with little hiccups

By 

from Rockville, MD

Comments about Garmin nuvi 350 Portable GPS Navigator:

I bought this Garmin GPS a year ago and it is still going strong. With all the new garmin purchases you have a option of getting a one-time map upload free. So I got one of the latest map update available. So far so good!!

 

This GPS does its function as it supposed to be!! It has a couple of options such as shortest distance, shortest time etc.. and it always gives good directions. I have never lost after getting this but sometimes it confuses you due to its over detailing. For example when you are in a freeway, sometimes it may ask you to keep left and when you got left most lane immediately it will ask to take right or take an exit on the right side. During that times it will be very difficult. Instead of instructing you to be on left it can tell to stay on the freeway but it won't!!  The other con is sometimes it won't tell the right turn unless you are few feets near the turn. This may be uneasy when you are in unknown locations. Otherwise it is a good GPS which does its work well!!

 

 

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