Garmin GPSMAP 76

I’ve read a number of posts here on gps use. I’m considering buying a used 2 year old Garmin gps76. It would not come with any marine type maps. I would have to purchase those separately for paddling in northern ontario.

Is it worth the $100 or would i be better off purchasing a newer unit? If i buy software for this unit can it be used on a newer color garmin for example?

I know i will not get as many features with this unit but until i become familiar with gps use perhaps it would serve the purpose? especially if the mapping is usable with newer units later?


76 or 76Cx?
I would try to find a GPSMAP 76Cx or 76Csx. These newer units have better reception, accuracy, faster limit, and battery life. Maps are stored on user swappable mini-chips: up to 1 GB of memory or more. You can put a lots of maps on these, like detailed maps for a whole state.

The older GPSMAP 76 has only 8 MB of memory and is built-in. Doesn’t hold much in the way of maps, maybe a few counties.



Grab it quick!
both my wife and I have the “Map-76”.

If you are a hard core explorer, it is the best one out there, except for the fact that it doesn’t have a color screen.

When they came out with the CS, my wife got one and a week later returned it and stayed with the plain old 76.

If you are using a bunch of waypoints the newer color one is useless, in the fact that you cannot change the way point icon globally, and if you have a lot of them on your screen, you will have to sit there and change each one individually. Do that with thirty or forty way points, and it gets old real quick.

If you don’t change them to small, they will completely clog up the screen.

She even called Garmin about it, and they confirmed that there was no way to change them globally.

Also finding the tides is much easier on the old MAP-76

And yes, we sit the night before a new trip and using a computer, create our trip, and then download the route with waypoints to the GPS.

That Price puts it almost in the same price range as the little Etrex, and it is ten times better, including the much larger screen and the fact you can have six different read outs on one screen if you so desire.

Jack L

If you buy a used one you could be locked out of buying any Marine blue charts for it.

Garmin is pretty anal about any map or chart purchases . I believe city navigator would be another example.

You will have know way of knowing if it is registered to another owner. (unless it is someone you know)

I would call garmin 1st to see if there is any problem buying a used one, they have a pretty myopic view on how their units can be used.

Like the 76Map
You can find brand new in box GPS76Map units on ebay for less than $150, possibly closer to $100 depending on who is bidding.

The 76Map is a workhorse…easy to use with front mounted buttons, large screen, waterproof, and it floats. Not bad features for a boat.

I use 76 in my fishing boat and have all my brushpiles and river channels marked. The 76S stand for “sensor”, ie compass. The compass feature is nice. The older ones don’t tell you the direction unless you are moving. So if you want to head towards a particular waypoint, then you might start moving in one diretion and then find yourself reversing course to continue on. the electronic compass helps avoids this.

I wouldn’t worry too much about the maps on the unit, I never use them. My GPS gets me to the fishing spots, on on my canoe they tell me how fast i’m averaging and how far I’ve gone.

all I need



– Last Updated: Jun-09-10 10:07 PM EST –

The great GPSMAP® 60CSx can now be purchased new for $199.

excellent info
Thanks everyone for your excellent info.

It sounds like i cant go too far wrong with either the 76 or the 60. I’m starting to think that i might be inclined to use the gps to establish my location and carry a good map to cross reference to. I know i’d be foolish to rely on the gps inplace of a compass, so i’d want to learn those skills as well.

Thanks jps for the website link, it sums up all the differences between the 2 units at a glance.

I like most of the new features available on the map60, electronic compass, paddling speed, etc and the lack of flotation i could deal with. On the other hand jackl’s mention of the waypoint issue could be a drawback.

I’m in ontario canada but im going to REI at Troy michigan this weekend, me thinks i’ll have a look round before going for the older used unit. I also emailed garmin to ask if i can purchase blue charts for a used gps. I wonder if the map60 is still available for $200 ?



My reference on the way point icon
was in reference to the Map 76 color one.

I don’t know anything about the 60.

One other thing to consider on buying a used one.

They do die eventually and have to be replaced, so if the used one you were looking at was used a lot, keep that in mind.

Jack L

mapping updates
I thought i’d post this response i got from garmin about updates for used gps units. I thought it was nice they let me know that i wouldnt be able to “update” bluecharts for the map76 beyond the 2008 version.

This might not be a deal killer, but i thought i’d pass this along for anyone who might have been looking at buying a used MAP76 gps.

“Thank you for contacting Garmin International.

I would be glad to help you with this. Yes you can purchase the BlueChart Americas software for the GPSMAP 76. It does not matter if you were the original owner or not.

One thing I would like to point out is that the BlueChart Americas mapping that is compatible with the GPSMAP 76 has been discontinued in July of 2008 and will no longer be updated. You will not be able to get a newer version than the July of 2008 mapping on the GPSMAP 76 as we have moved to the newer BlueChart g2 mapping that is not compatible with this device. Please let me know if you have any additional questions.

Product Support Specialist

2nd Shift Marine Team

Garmin International”

cheers all