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Thursday, 26 October 2006

Garmin Rino 110 2-way Radio & Personal Navigator

Written by  Nick Atlas
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Over the past several years, we have seen great leaps and strides in miniaturization. This has led to an increase in the so-called “combo” device–including the now ubiquitous camera/phone and the flashlight/radio. Garmin’s Rino 110 is an excellent example of how combination devices can provide increased portability and excellent value. With both a 2-way radio and a basic GPS navigation system, it provides both limited communications and the strong GPS performance that has been Garmin’s hallmark in the past.


Specifications:


Size: 4.5” x 2.3” x 1.6” Weight: 7.6 oz.    Display: 1.4’ x 1.4” square, 160x160 pixels, B&W display.       Internal Memory:1 MB


GPS:                 Receiver: WAAS Enabled, Differential-ready, 12 parallel channel Acquisition Time: 15 sec. – 5 min.               Accuracy: <15 meters

Radio:
Channels 1-14 FRS, 15-22 GMRS    Range: 2 miles FRS. 5 Miles GMRS   Output power: FPS: 0.5 watt. GMRS 1.0 watt                   Power: 3 AA batteries for 14-41 hours of life depending on features used.

What’s in the box?

Rino 110 unit Detachable belt clip Wrist strap             102 page instruction book                    Quick start guide

rinoOver the past several years, we have seen great leaps and strides in miniaturization. This has led to an increase in the so-called “combo” device–including the now ubiquitous camera/phone and the flashlight/radio.

 

Garmin’s Rino 110 is an excellent example of how combination devices can provide increased portability and excellent value. With both a 2-way radio and a basic GPS navigation system, it provides both limited communications and the strong GPS performance that has been Garmin’s hallmark in the past.

 

At first glance, one can tell that the purpose of the Rino 110 is as an outdoor communication and guidance device. Its yellow and black plastic and rubber case is more reminiscent of a power tool than an electronic device. The device is built solidly with no play at all among the parts that fit together. The facts that there are no squeaking bits or wiggling parts makes it feel more durable.  Gaskets protect all the joints and the Rino 110 is designed to be waterproof to 1 meter for up to 30 minutes. While swimming with it is not an option, rain clearly is not a problem.

 

It has the same feeling as a lightweight walkie-talkie; an impression that is reinforced by the large black rubber button on the side marked “Talk” ands the seemingly massive pair of antennas that sprout from the top of the device.

When the device is turned on, it immediately begins searching for satellites, and in practice it generally acquires them in fairly short order. From a cold start, the average time at 51 seconds was only a little more than the 45 seconds advertised by the device’s specifications.

 

Once the satellites have been found, a map of the user’s current location is displayed-including cities that are built into the database and points of interest that can be added into its 1 MB of memory by the user. In bright sunlight, the display is nicely readable, but in overcast or near-dark situations the backlight was required for the screen to appear clearly.

As with all Garmin GPS devices, the Rino 110 is so feature-rich that to review them all in-depth would be a challenge. As with other devices, it easily tracks location, altitude, distance traveled, distance to user-defined waypoints, and so on. It also has a calendar, alarm clock, stopwatch, etc. It even comes with a few little games to play, some of which use the GPS functionality. Among the device’s features, there are a few that really stand out.

The first really nice feature is what Garmin calls “Tracks.” This feature essentially keeps track of the route followed and allows the user to retrace his or her steps back to their starting point. In practice, the system worked very nicely, guiding us back without any trouble. This proved to be an excellent feature, not soley for finding our way back to the point of origin, but for being able to get back to locations we found along the way.

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Last modified on Sunday, 16 December 2012

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