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Satnav or Old School Maps?


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It is no secret that the Lexus Navigation units are not the most user friendly.

With the holidays here i was wondering if we use them or not. I always used them with exception of course of routes i knew and, International trips. I used to go north of spain regularly ( pre covid)  and always used the old school map on the lap. It creates more situational awareness you know the area where you drive in.  I know some use their phones as well.

Thoughts?

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19 minutes ago, dutchie01 said:

It is no secret that the Lexus Navigation units are not the most user friendly.

With the holidays here i was wondering if we use them or not. I always used them with exception of course of routes i knew and, International trips. I used to go north of spain regularly ( pre covid)  and always used the old school map on the lap. It creates more situational awareness you know the area where you drive in.  I know some use their phones as well.

Thoughts?

I`ve not experienced any problems with the Sat Nav in my July 2010 GS. Have been throughout the U.K. (except N.I.) and to Fallingbostal near Hannover in Germany (twice)without a hitch.

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Phone just drives circles around sat-nav. I would say Lexus sat-nav is good enough if you just driving 1000 miles from once city to another... they are good enough for general direction and better than maps for sure. However, phone is still better for real time traffic information and especially finding alternative routes quickly in case there is accident or closure. Sometimes when I know I will be driving thousands miles in Europe I set sat-nav to final destination - it is just useful that it reminds you there will be turn in 1 mile on major motorways, in case your phone dies or something like that that is nice back-up option as well. However, I would never use it to accurate door-to-door navigation on small city roads.

As for maps, the only time I have used maps to navigate is in the mountains - to my surprise even google maps don't have up-to date paths in more remote areas, whereas if you get ordnance survey map it will be very accurate. The only issue you always have to have latest one. 

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10 minutes ago, dutchie01 said:

I was not referring to google maos but paper like the michelin guide?

Yes that is what I mean - I only used paper map in the mountains, because google maps didn't have smaller paths there. 

37 minutes ago, Linas.P said:

As for maps, the only time I have used maps to navigate is in the mountains - to my surprise even google maps don't have up-to date paths in more remote areas, whereas if you get ordnance survey map it will be very accurate. The only issue you always have to have latest one. 

 

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11 minutes ago, dutchie01 said:

I was not referring to google maos but paper like the michelin guide?

I still prefer paper maps but use a TOM TOM nearer the destination. Sat Navs give people no sense of direction.

I am working on a road map that covers the garage floor. Basically to teach my 13 year old some UK geography.

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I always use the Lexus nav. Keep a map in the car too. JLR nav isn’t that great either when comparing generations on a like for like basis. Mine has never let me down but then again I go to the same place of work and only that location every day. Well I did pre-Covid anyway. Nowadays I don’t need satnav to get from my bedroom to my home office via the kitchen 😀

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I think some people have sense of direction, some people don't - I don't believe using paper map somehow improves it. That said - knowing how to use maps is beneficial, even if you use digital maps after that it is still useful to know what the map is as many rules applies to nay map anyway.

I guess one of my issues with paper map is that it is not possible to use it whilst driving (or would not be safe anyway). Second reason is that - I don't actually use maps or sat-nav because i don't know where I am going.. sure if it is middle of nowhere and I have never been there before it is useful as well, but most of the time only need it to see traffic condition and to advise me on alternative routes. If it won't be there I would still reach my destination, maybe just not as quick. 

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Lol the main thing is the help get you from a to b pretty well,short comings acknowledged 👍

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9 hours ago, dutchie01 said:

It is no secret that the Lexus Navigation units are not the most user friendly.

As a relatively new Lexus owner, it has been a source of bemusement to me that a car maker with the insight to go to Mark Levinson for their ICE audio system, and Nextbase for their dashcam system, didn’t go to Garmin or Tom Tom for their sat nav.

I can’t imagine the production meeting at which such a decision was made.  Who was it, do you think, when faced with the programming simplicity of my Garmin, say, and its four free annual updates, decided that Lexus owners would much prefer a clunky, tedious to use, alternative that could only be updated with a comparatively out-of-date database at substantial cost by a dealer?

Perhaps it started out as a joke?

As for Bernard’s use of ‘the old school map on the lap’ option, that’s surely more appropriate as a pre-departure orientation system than on-the-move guidance - apart from being potentially illegal and, occasionally, fatal!

I think Lexus rather lost their way with this one.

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Got to admit I have become totally reliant on sat nav when some 30 years ago I would travel throughout the UK and always found my location using traditional maps. Couldn't agree more that sat nav gives you no sense of geographic location, but it is superior when it corrects any navigation mistake you may make. Funny enough, just this week we were obliged to use paper maps to locate certain very out-of-the-way places. It made me realise my temporary navigator, i.e. the wife, will never replace or even begin to compliment my acquired knowledge or that of the sat nav!

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I think car satnav, irrespective of the quality of individual systems, is a truly remarkable item of technology.  I  haven’t used a paper map since I had my first car with satnav upwards of twenty years ago,  and its functionality still occasionally inspires a child-like wonder in me.  I used to hate stopping to safely read a paper map or otherwise asking a passenger to do so - and when the passenger was my wife the result was usually a quarrel. Only very occasionally have I experienced the satnav’s failure to correctly pinpoint a destination, and  have usually solved the problem by rolling down my window and asking somebody the way, just as in the good old days, though I have recently discovered that I also have a phone app that does the same thing if I need to walk. 

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I like both...

Sat Nav and a map - the small A5(?) ones are great. It's always good to have a fair idea in ones head of where I am going, the roads and direction!

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1 hour ago, LenT said:

As a relatively new Lexus owner, it has been a source of bemusement to me that a car maker with the insight to go to Mark Levinson for their ICE audio system, and Nextbase for their dashcam system, didn’t go to Garmin or Tom Tom for their sat nav.

I can’t imagine the production meeting at which such a decision was made.  Who was it, do you think, when faced with the programming simplicity of my Garmin, say, and its four free annual updates, decided that Lexus owners would much prefer a clunky, tedious to use, alternative that could only be updated with a comparatively out-of-date database at substantial cost by a dealer?

Perhaps it started out as a joke?

As for Bernard’s use of ‘the old school map on the lap’ option, that’s surely more appropriate as a pre-departure orientation system than on-the-move guidance - apart from being potentially illegal and, occasionally, fatal!

I think Lexus rather lost their way with this one.

What is wrong with your Lexus system Len ?

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When I started driving for a living I acquired multiple A toZ books. I must have had a good 12 or more. I would change them about every 2 years or so because I would mark off the street where I was delivering to in highlighter pen, pages became hallucinogenic with the different colours I used. There were satnavs available but they were chunky and horrible looking. I got my first satnav when tomtom brought out the One. A slimline model which was pocket friendly. As soon as I got it delivering in Runcorn became so much stress free, stupid road system they have there.

So my answer to the original question of this thread is Satnav. But since the OP has mentioned the nav in his Lexus then my alternate answer is Satnav with the assistance of Google maps on my phone.

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Used maps before.

Becker was the first that actually did function better for me. Not user friendly to start up, but found the way from Denmark to a narrow street in Madrid in one go.

Later Garmin have taken it all. Lexus navigation is not user friendly at all and even latest update does not find the best, easiest or fastest way. Garmin is easy to use and free update for as long as the unit is functioning (have one that is still great after 7 years.

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Many years ago, I was in business with a gentleman who liked to play golf. Finding out as a non-player, that someone likes golf is always traumatic, as you're likely to be subjected to one-sided conversations featuring the words "putt", "wedge", "par", "oooh!", "four ball betterball", "oh good shot Sir" etc, even though the look on your face makes it obvious to the teller that you're not at all interested. Anyway, I digress. This chap had a Rover 75 estate or the MG equivalent as he needed to get his weapons of boredom (his golf bats) into the boot. I took him to a meeting in my IS200 and after that he had to have a Lexus. Of course his choices were "limited" regarding getting the boredom implements into the boot so he ended up having to have an RX300. Many months were then spent asking if my car did this (powered tailgate) or that (air conditioned seats) or the other (moving steering wheel). Of course, it being an IS200, it didn't but this game of oneupmanship never seemed to tire him. Much like his endless anectodes about golf.

It was on a trip to a factory somewhere up north that he really did reach my limit. Even though he had Sat Nav in his RX, he always insisted on taking his bloody Tom Tom everywhere because it was the finest sat nav in its class and nothing could touch its navigating abilities. After the 398th telling of the "Oh the Lexus sat nav is rubbish and always gets the predicted time to destination wrong" story, I lost my cool and asked him if he'd ever bothered to set it up properly. He admitted that he hadn't, and at the next stop, I set all the road speeds and preferences correctly. Oddly enough, the car's sat nav agreed with the Tom Tom after that. The man was, and probably still is, an utter idiot.

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3 hours ago, royoftherovers said:

What is wrong with your Lexus system Len ?

It is just very slow and usually outdated, on top of that touchpad is pretty terrible way of entering address compared to phone keyboard. In comparison there is no such thing as out of date map on the phone - if may changes it instantly gets updated for everyone. 

The only car where I believe sat-nav was somewhat useful was BMW with it's iDrive, the dial somehow was easier to use and system would pre-filter address in country you are at, meaning you only need to enter first letter and suddenly instead of whole alphabet you will get just 5 possible second letter and so on. Basically in 3 clicks you have your address in sat-nav and it was easy enough to use when driving, I would argue easier than tanking phone out of pocket (which one should not do when driving anyway). Obviously, even BMW has same issue with outdated maps in the beginning, but I believe ~2012 if you got their professional system, the maps would update automatically every few months. Still not as new as google maps, but good enough. 

So to summarise - Older Lexus systems just had poor screens with low sensitivity and outdated maps, newer systems have rather tricky to use mouse touchpad and still has outdated maps. not convenient to enter the address and nearly impossible to do it when driving. As well you need to know address precisely, there is no search like on google maps i.e. you can enter approximate name and let the map to suggest you close matches. On top of all that traffic information on google maps is just instant - if it says 3h to drive, it will be 3h... if it says there is closure or congestion, there will be. At most it could be outdated for like 15 minutes.

Finally, having sat-nav in car is rather obsolete nowadays - most modern cars comes with CarPlay or Android Auto, meaning your phone automatically connect to the car infotainment system and you have best of both words - intuitive user interface where you can quickly enter any address and latest maps. For example new MB system is good (arguably one of the best in the market), but nobody uses it, I certainly don't - just connect the phone and use Android Auto.  

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13 hours ago, Spacewagon52 said:

I am working on a road map that covers the garage floor. Basically to teach my 13 year old some UK geography.

aha !  my nephew has just covered his study ceiling with old Ordnance Survey maps of the local areas to his home ..  to teach himself ( and his teen kids )  this concept of map reading too ....  shows rivers, lakes etc too ..  and all at the same time :yes:

But I do have use of my mobile phone for useful and on the move directions, and of course she, ( the phone ) speaks to me too ..........  even in my Ls400 ....  who on earth needs a built-in Sat Nav system these days for heavens sake :wink3:

Malc

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Both. If going on a longer journey, I always like to look at a paper map to see if there's an interesting place to stop for a break. Will then use Waze on my phone to take us there. 

Always keep an atlas in the car. Earlier this year we lost the signal high up in the Lake district, so resorted to the map until the signal returned.

Have never bothered to use a built in sat nav in a car. Always use a phone as it's always up to date.

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9/10 Your phone will vastly out perform your satnav. However satnav in a car with a HUD is a different story. Thats just beautifully smooth. 

 

Haven't used paper maps on years due to the ability of my devices telling me congestion and adaptive routing.

 

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Some find Lexus navigation fine. Some do not:

Negative: update cost a fortune and will only change some roads and not make navigation or input any better.

Positive: it is in the car already.

Navigation from phone:

Positive: update cost nothing but informing Google where you are.

Negative: when Google is in your phone you have little knowledge about what else Google find there.

Garmin:

Negative: not much better than Google finding your way

Positive: Does not know who you are and care about where you are or anything else.

 

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22 minutes ago, Las Palmas said:

Positive: it is in the car already.

unless you drive a vastly superior Mk3 Ls400 :thumbsup: ...  all that cumbersome screen stuff .  who really needs it 

Malc

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This thread has brought back the memory of what for me was one of life’s major annoyances in pre-satnav days, namely my inability to correctly re-fold a single-sheet map after spreading it out.  I’m not sure I ever managed it at the first attempt.   Maps in book form were better, but the need to find the route again after turning a page could also be pretty irritating.  

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