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How much does the Nav really gets used?

3198 Views 23 Replies 18 Participants Last post by  Spaniard
I've never owned a vehicle with Nav before. I ordered it on my new rig mainly because I liked the big display and the Nav seems like a neat toy. Unless I change careers and start delivering pizzas, at this point it doesn't seem that "practical". I'm looking forward to getting it, but I wonder. Is it a novelty that wears off after a few months, or is it more appreciated with time? I realize everyone's situation is different, but am curious if people really use there nav like they thought they would six months or year down the road.
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cca said:
I've never owned a vehicle with Nav before. I ordered it on my new rig mainly because I liked the big display and the Nav seems like a neat toy..
:) You said it just like I would say it. :) well.. in the beginning. I have not put it to a big trip but I had it on rental car before. Personally I would say you will like it once you realize its potential and features.

The truth is like the Hertz's commercial "Hertz Never Lost!" with a navigation. In the beginning, I think it is kind of fun.. afterward, it is a feature you can have. And you will feel safe by having it. I had the need to go somewhere with an address at dark night. Well.. I could be calling people on the phone and try to see the hard to read street signs, even worse the address numbers off the neighborhood hourses. Your navi will get you there at the exact locatoin.

I also start to use it like a phone book, believe it or not. You can find store phone numbers off the system once you become more comfortable with it.

Since you have it... try not to say something like " I can do it with a $5 map." YOu will need a trunk load of maps in your car. I have friends who say they don't see the need for power windows in the car. To me, I am glad I got the navi!
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I'm glad I got the nav.
At first I would try to force it to use the routes I normally take but then realized there is no need for it if I already know where I'm going.

It comes in really handy when you are not too familiar with the area.

Today, while returning from lunch I took a bunch of back streets to avoid the road construction. The Nav was useful in showing me where I was and what streets I was approaching at least until I found a street I recognized.

This weekend, I was able to specify a restaurant I wanted to go to without knowing the address. Despite the fact that I got off track by trying to take "short-cuts" (and getting lost), the Nav recalculated the course and directed me to the restaurant
You just have to trust the Nav and listen to her directions.

Note that I usually use Microsoft Streets & Trips to create maps but I have found that the routing software chooses different routes compared to the Nav. However, the Nav knows where I am better than MS so I put more trust in the Nav.

Another neat feature is that I discovered that my driveway is 22 feet above sea level.

I plan on getting navigation for my next car.
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Thanks Bef, you indirectly answered another question I was curious about... Weather it was a mascaulin or feminien voice giving directions. I thought my salesman would think I'm a wierdo if I asked him. Now hopefully she doesn't sound like she comes form the Bronx, or say "Ay" after her voice commands, like they do in her home town. Otherwise I'm afraid the Nav really would ber a novelty.:D
(No offense to all my friends in Canada and NYC)
Navigation system/GPS

The cost is what made me not to elect the Touring NAVI-
I went with the touring instead...BUT...I went and purchase a Garmin StreetPilot III GPS system for 65 percent LESS and WORKS a LOT better. the software is CD-ROM based instead of DVD.

The StreetPilot III monitor and colors LOOKS a LOT better. AND...I can put it in the MDX or my Honda or my boat when am out and about in the lake. REALLY COOL gadget!
I have been using Navi for about 2 months now and I absolutely love this thing. I traveled on Thanksgiving weekend and used the navi a lot. Every time that there was break lights ahead of me in the middle of the freeway, I used the detour function in the navi to avoid all the freeway congestions. That probably saved me about 30 minutes out of 5 hours of driving. I also like the fact that I could look ahead using the map display and expect what kind of turns are coming. This was useful in the night driving or in poor visibility condition. Besides from these I play around with it almost everyday when I'm stuck in the traffic lights.

I'm not sure how accurate the altitude reading is in the navi. It seems to fluctuate a lot. Anyone know how accurate this thing is?
I'm not sure whose voice it really is patterned after but it definitely sounds like a she.

Note that Honda and Alpine both have offices in Torrance, CA and the examples in the Nav manual show local streets/businesses.

I guess someone with the Nav can go over to Good Guys (or some other local Alpine dealer) and determine if the same voice is used.

Since Nav isn't offered in Canada, the sentences don't end in "eh". :D

By simultaneously holding down the Zoom and Menu buttons you can turn on the "California" mode. This enables phrases such as:
"Right turn ahead, Dude"
"Whoa Dude, you just passed your turn!"
"Start looking for a parking spot"
"Off-ramp in 1/2 mile. Close windows and lock doors."

The altitude readings seems to take a while. Not sure how accurate they are although one time I did see a reading that said I was about 3 feet above sea level.
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One of the neat features of the Navi is it's ETA capability. I really like it even for short (ie less than 30 min) trips.

I used it recently on a 9 hr trip where during the entire trip I was jumping back and forth going over a deadline of a store closing etc. Turns out I got there with 10 minutes to spare. The navi kept me up to date minute by minute.

Re: Navigation system/GPS

Fireblade6 said:
The cost is what made me not to elect the Touring NAVI-
I went with the touring instead...BUT...I went and purchase a Garmin StreetPilot III GPS system for 65 percent ...
Sounds like a deal on prices. I am curious how integrated the action of the portable GPS when you are driving the car. With MDX''s Navigation system I particularly enjoy the driving instruction given by the car's navi voice when you are on the busy street and hard to turn area. The instruction from the Navi to the driver is right on the money. I like GPS being portable (never own one) but I imagine it is still not quite the same as the built-in navigation system.
Funnest Thing on the X

I have found the Navi to be an invaluable time-saver and frustration-preventer on every trip I have taken. It frees you up to explore unknown locations at will because you know you will always be able to find your way back quickly and easily. It also allows you to pick a motel or restaurant down the road when you feel like you'd like to drive a couple more hours but you want to be sure of having a place then. You look ahead, get the phone number and call for reservations and you are set.
Since the local Charleston area has been detail mapped in the 2.05 upgrade, I find I also get a surprising amount of use here at home when going to a location that I do not know.
It's a personal call, but for me, the Navi is one of the best very features on my X.

Meep Meep
Detour & Altitude

When I first picked up my MDX I had to drive through downtown LA on the 110 to get back home and the traffic, as usual, was slow bumper to bumper. After a while, it seemed like the Nav noticed that I wasn't moving and suggested that I get off the freeway and re-join past some intersection (maybe the 10). Sounds good in theory but that wasn't the best neighborhood to be driving around in at night and I wasn't too familar with the area and I was driving a new MDX.

Has anyone noticed that the altitude meter doesn't go below 0 feet? :confused:

There are areas where I am driving up and down little hills and the altitude always reads 0. At some point, when I am above sea level, I start getting single digit readings and higher.
My MDX is currently parked about 71 feet above sea level.
Navigation System Altitudes

The Navi never will indicate a negative altitude so it will read zero, even in Death Valley. Also, it is a limitation of GPS technology that it is not as accurate in reading z axis (altitude) as it is reading x-y (location). The reading can be off as much as 600 ft. Still the error seems relatively constant at least over a limited time scan so it is useful, for example, finding the highest elevation on the Continental Divide even though the absolute elevation may be somewhat off.

Meep Meep
Hey RedMdxMemphis

I am originally from Memphis and my folks still live there. In fact we will be home for Christmas. I'll keep a look out for your wheels.
Re: Hey RedMdxMemphis

msu79gt82 said:
I am originally from Memphis and my folks still live there. In fact we will be home for Christmas. I'll keep a look out for your wheels.
:) I have seen the local dealer's order list when I was waiting.. you could count the Red Rock here with one hand so you may see me on the Red...

My wife is beginning to drive *my* MDX so she may be on the wheels..
We sell more 188's in our area than any other model, I'm sure that varies in different parts of the country because of mapping or other reasons. I will say, if someone had nav in their previous vehicle they usually always want it in the new one. In the past I probably would not have opted for it, but after using it for the past couple of years I'm pretty much hooked on it now.
nav system

So far my nav system has got me out of some tight spots in areas that were unclear or almost illegible on printed maps. I realized I was becoming dependent when only the car knew where I was going one day.:cool:
Everyone I know who has a navigation system in their car loves it. Some are repeat users, meaning they had it in their previous car and cannot (will not) buy another one without it.

Some said that they thought that Navi was just an expensive toy/option and is not really that crucial. After test driving the system and buying the option, they cannot (and will not) buy another car without it. The latest of these converts is my wife who currently uses it in her 02 MDX.
Pics please...

I went and purchase a Garmin StreetPilot III GPS system for 65 percent LESS and WORKS a LOT better. the software is CD-ROM based instead of DVD.
Was wondering if you posted any pics of this system and if it is still a better option than the factory navi?
I don't think I could EVER.......... another car without a Navigation system (and a good DVD one to boot). After my first experience with the DVD unit in my 2000 Acura 3.2TL I just cannot imagine life without a Navi.......and I've used these devices for almost 2 years now, and I consider myself to be a very PRACTICAL person, so I would definitely know if it's just a TOY or GIMMICK........ The fact that I've spent almost 4K installing an Alpine DVD unit (NVE-851A) on my 4-Runner and will spend another 4K installing a Kenwood DV2100 DVD unit on my commuter Corolla will in itself tell you how useful this device has been!! (unfortunately, the first Nav - factory Acura Unit - was also THE BEST ON THE PLANET - spoiled me :( .......I guess otherwise I would've never known the difference........ - The Alpine aftermarket unit is not anywhere near as good as the Alpine-made ACURA factory OEM unit :( )

Even the Lexus Navi which is the second best doesn't really match up to the Acura system OVERALL :( :( , even though it is better in some ways (graphics, speed of calculation) - And Lexus does not provide the level of support for it's factory NAV that Acura does - regular DVD updates at a reasonable cost etc.

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Navi accuracy/usefulness

I've taken my MDX from the Bay Area to Tahoe twice now, climbing about 7200 ft. (over the Donner Pass) in the process. Caltrans posts signs indicating elevation every 1000 ft. Every time I passed one of those signs the Navi system was almost dead-on with its reading: e.g. when the sign said I was at 5000 ft. so did the Nav system. So, two possibilities...either both are exactly right, or Caltrans is using the same inaccurate system as Acura!

OTOH, I have noticed that the Nav system doesn't distinguish among types of freeways. Out here in California we have lots of numbered roads that appear on a map as a highway yet in reality are little more than local streets with lots of lights and stop-and-go traffic. Since the Nav system (who we've named "Suvy") doesn't distinguish between the two, many times she has put us on local roads when a freeway, which would be slightly longer distance-wise but much less time-consuming, would have been a better choice. Oh well, it comes down to what an earlier writer said -- if you know where you're going don't use the Nav system, but if you're lost it's wonderful.
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