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post #7 of (permalink) Old 8th March 2006
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Nick, noooooooooooooooooo! Not the iCN320. It is the Renault Modus of the Sat-nav world

A friend of mine bought one of these, and it's a horrible little unit. The screen's not much bigger than the end of a matchbox, and over half of that is taken up by the status bars. The remaining map is just a tiny squiggle - just about readable if you're not on the move, but I doubt it's remotely usable while driving. The software on the unit is barely configurable, and the postcode search is a joke (unless we hadn't worked it out properly, it only appears to search on the primary part of the postcode, making it useless for finding actual addresses.)

Newbies buying their first sat-nav might well be happy with it - they probably don't know what to expect and are just pleased that it gets them from A to B. If you don't mind relying entirely on voice instructions, then the screen size probably isn't an issue, but if you're used to a decent display (it's often very handy when there's some ambiguity in the voice instructions) then the iCN320 is next to useless. The i3 display may be tiny too, but at least (as far as I can tell) the software is prepared to fill the screen completely with a 3D map.)

I initially thought that 3D mapping would just be a gimmick, but the perspective that it gives is really useful. You get enough detail of the stretch of road you're about to negotiate, but you can still see a reasonable way into the distance too (with less detail.) I wouldn't want to go back to 2D mapping now.

Please people, don't buy an iCN320. There are much better units on the market for a little more, and the i3 (while it still has a tiny screen) is available for around the same price. If you want something with a bigger display on a 200 quid budget then this looks rather interesting:
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