Best Handheld Gps For Marine Use (2024 Update)

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If you’re looking for the best handheld GPS for marine use, you have plenty of choices. But with so many options available in the market, finding the right one can seem a bit overwhelming. Before you start your search, it's important to think about what factors are most important to you.

When it comes to finding the best handheld GPS for marine use, there are a few things to consider. Firstly, you’ll want to make sure it has a good battery life so that it will last as long as you need it to. Second, it should be waterproof and able to withstand the harsh conditions of the ocean. Additionally, it should have a user-friendly interface to easily navigate the waters.

Do you enjoy boating or fishing? Are you a seasoned sailor or a new mariner? Do you like to explore new vistas or stick to familiar waters? Have you ever got lost on the ocean? If you answered yes to any of these questions, then a handheld GPS could be what you need to ensure your safety and guide you to your destination. Many handheld GPS devices come with features such as preloaded maps, real-time navigation, and tracking capabilities to make your boating or fishing experience more enjoyable and worry-free. Whether you're navigating through fog, tides or currents, the best handheld GPS is an essential tool for any marine adventure.

10 Best Handheld Gps For Marine Use

# Product Image Product Name Product Notes Check Price
1
Ideal for outdoor enthusiasts who require GPS navigation and satellite communication capabilities in remote areas.
2
The product is ideal for marine navigation and tracking, with a rugged and water-resistant design.
3
The product is ideal for navigating coastal waters and surviving harsh marine environments.
4
This product is ideal for marine navigation, with the ability to store 200 routes and 10,000 waypoints on a color display.
5
Ideal for outdoor enthusiasts, hikers, and hunters who need a durable and accurate GPS navigator.
6
It is ideal for outdoor activities such as hiking, hunting, and backpacking as it provides portable waterproof GPS navigation.
7
The product is ideal for outdoor enthusiasts who need a durable and reliable handheld GPS navigator.
8
Ideal for boating and outdoor activities, as a compact satellite communicator that allows communication in remote areas.
9
The product is ideal for outdoor enthusiasts who need a rugged GPS device with satellite communication technology.
10
The product is ideal for outdoor enthusiasts who require a reliable satellite GPS messenger for global coverage and emergency situations.
Ideal for outdoor enthusiasts who require GPS navigation and satellite communication capabilities in remote areas.
The product is ideal for marine navigation and tracking, with a rugged and water-resistant design.
The product is ideal for navigating coastal waters and surviving harsh marine environments.
This product is ideal for marine navigation, with the ability to store 200 routes and 10,000 waypoints on a color display.
Ideal for outdoor enthusiasts, hikers, and hunters who need a durable and accurate GPS navigator.
It is ideal for outdoor activities such as hiking, hunting, and backpacking as it provides portable waterproof GPS navigation.
The product is ideal for outdoor enthusiasts who need a durable and reliable handheld GPS navigator.
Ideal for boating and outdoor activities, as a compact satellite communicator that allows communication in remote areas.
The product is ideal for outdoor enthusiasts who need a rugged GPS device with satellite communication technology.
The product is ideal for outdoor enthusiasts who require a reliable satellite GPS messenger for global coverage and emergency situations.

1. Top-Notch Gps And Communication Combo

The new Garmin GPSMAP 66i is a high-performance GPS device that is perfect for exploring the great outdoors. With a large 3” sunlight-readable color display, it provides easy viewing in all lighting conditions. The device also features a trigger for an interactive SOS to the GEOS 24/7 search and rescue monitoring center, ensuring that you are always safe while on your adventures. Additionally, the two-way messaging via the 100% Global Iridium satellite network (satellite subscription required) allows you to stay connected with your family and friends, no matter where you are in the world.

One of the standout features of the Garmin GPSMAP 66i is its preloaded Garmin TOPO mapping with direct-to-device Birdseye satellite imagery downloads (no annual subscription). The device also includes multiple global navigation satellite systems (GNSS) support and navigation sensors, ensuring that you always have the most accurate location information available.

With cellular connectivity, the Garmin GPSMAP 66i lets you access active weather forecasts and geocaching live, providing you with the most up-to-date information on weather conditions and the best places to explore. The device is also compatible with the Garmin Explore website and app, which helps you manage waypoints, routes, activities and collections, use tracks and review trip data from the field.

The internal, rechargeable lithium battery of the Garmin GPSMAP 66i provides up to 35 hours of battery life in 10-minute tracking mode and 1-minute tracking mode (display off). In Expedition mode with 30-minute tracking, the device can last up to 200 hours. This ensures that you have ample battery life for even the longest outdoor adventures.

It is important to note that some jurisdictions regulate or prohibit the use of satellite communications devices. It is the responsibility of the user to know and follow all applicable laws in the jurisdictions where the device is intended to be used.

2. Garmin Gpsmap 79s, Marine Gps Handheld With Worldwide Basemap, Rugged Design And Floats In Water

This handheld GPS is a rugged and reliable device that can be used in a variety of outdoor settings. It comes with a high-resolution color display that is scratch-resistant and fogproof, ensuring that users can easily read the screen in all types of weather conditions. The device is also water-resistant, meeting IPX6 standards at the unit level.

The GPS has an increased memory capacity, allowing users to save and track up to 10,000 waypoints, 250 routes, and 300 fit activities. This makes it ideal for longer trips where users may need to keep track of multiple routes and activities.

The GPS supports multiple satellite constellations, including GPS, GLONASS, Beidou, Galileo, QZSS, and SBAS, ensuring reliable tracking around the world. The device also comes with a worldwide basemap, making it easy to navigate in new and unfamiliar areas.

The built-in 3-axis tilt-compensated electronic compass is a useful feature that shows heading even while standing still. The barometric altimeter is another great feature that tracks changes in pressure to pinpoint your precise altitude, making it easier to navigate in mountainous areas.

Battery life is important in any GPS device, and this one boasts up to 20 hours in GPS mode, ensuring that users can rely on it for extended periods of time. Overall, this handheld GPS is a reliable and durable device that is perfect for outdoor enthusiasts who need accurate navigation in a variety of settings.

3. Floats, Charts, And Navigates With Garmin.

The handheld GPS is a reliable and durable device that is designed to withstand the toughest outdoor environments. It is rugged, water-resistant (IPX6), and features a scratch-resistant, fogproof glass that ensures it can handle any adventure. The device is built to float, making it ideal for use on boats or during water activities.

One of the key features of this handheld GPS is its ability to accurately track your location. It supports multiple satellite constellations (GPS, GLONASS, Beidou, Galileo, QZSS, and SBAS), ensuring reliable tracking around the world. With increased memory, you can save and track up to 10,000 waypoints, 250 routes, and 300 fit activities.

The device also includes preloaded BlueChart g3 coastal charts, which provide detailed mapping information for coastal waters. The built-in 3-axis tilt-compensated electronic compass shows your heading while standing still, and the barometric altimeter tracks changes in pressure to pinpoint your precise altitude.

With a high-resolution color display, you can easily view your location and mapping information. The battery life lasts up to 20 hours in GPS mode, ensuring that you can track your adventures for extended periods without worrying about running out of power.

4. Boat Gps Navigator Xf-607: Superior Marine Navigation.

This product boasts a 7-inch color display that has a wide angle of view and high brightness, making it easy to use in various lighting conditions. Its display resolution of 800 x 480 ensures that chart data is displayed accurately and with great detail, providing a more convenient user experience.

In addition to its impressive display, this product offers a range of useful functions. It features intelligent voice capabilities, distance measurement, tide and yaw alarms, MOB (man overboard) alerts, position tracking, stepless backlight brightness adjustment, compass interface, and analog navigation. These features make it an incredibly versatile tool for navigating on the water.

Installation of this navigation system is made simpler by the included mounting accessories. Users will appreciate the ease with which they can set up and start using this product.

With the ability to store up to 200 routes and 10,000 waypoints, this navigation system provides users with a wealth of options for their sea-faring adventures. Overall, this product is an excellent choice for those looking for a reliable and feature-packed navigation system.

5. Garmin Etrex 32x, Rugged Handheld Gps Navigator (Renewed)

Introducing the reliable handheld GPS that lets you explore confidently, without worrying about getting lost. With its 2.2-inch sunlight-readable color display and 240 x 320 display pixels, this GPS provides improved readability even in bright sunlight.

This device comes preloaded with Topo Active maps that include routable roads and trails for cycling and hiking, allowing you to plan your routes ahead of time and navigate with ease. The maps cover a wide range of areas, so you can confidently explore new territories, knowing that you have access to accurate and up-to-date information.

The GPS supports both GPS and GLONASS satellite systems, which allows for tracking in more challenging environments than GPS alone. This feature ensures that you can navigate through dense forests, deep canyons, and rugged terrain without losing your way.

With 8 GB of internal memory, you can download a variety of maps and still have enough space for other important files. Additionally, the device also has a micro SD card slot that allows you to expand your storage capacity and store even more maps for your outdoor adventures.

6. Bushnell Backtrack Mini Gps Navigation, Portable Waterproof Gps For Hiking Hunting And Backpacking

The Bushnell BackTrack Mini GPS is the perfect tool for hikers, backpackers, and hunters who want to ensure they don't lose their way when cell coverage or battery life is limited. This compact device uses advanced GPS technology to capture your trip or waypoint so you can easily guide yourself back to your starting position. The device boasts an impressive battery life of up to 35 hours, making it a reliable tool for extended outdoor adventures.

Designed to withstand the toughest outdoor conditions, the Bushnell BackTrack Mini GPS is both rugged and waterproof. Whether you're hiking through rough terrain or encountering unexpected weather, you can trust that the device will remain intact and functional.

In addition to its impressive GPS capabilities, the BackTrack Mini GPS also comes equipped with Bluetooth technology. This allows you to easily store and share your trip or waypoints with the Bushnell Connect app on your smartphone. With the app, you can view and sync trips and waypoints, providing a convenient way to keep track of your adventures.

The BackTrack Mini GPS features an easy-to-read display and large glove-friendly buttons, making it a breeze to use while out on the trail. It also provides valuable information such as elevation gain and decline, barometric pressure, and the day's sunrise and sunset times, as well as moonrise and moonset times.

One of the best things about the BackTrack Mini GPS is that it doesn't require expensive batteries. Instead, you can simply charge the device using any Micro USB port, and it's ready to go.

7. Garmin Etrex 22x, Rugged Handheld Gps Navigator (Renewed)

The handheld GPS is an essential tool for any adventurer who wants to explore confidently and safely. With its reliable and accurate tracking, you can navigate even in the most challenging environments.

Equipped with a 2.2-inch sunlight-readable color display, this GPS device offers improved readability and clarity, allowing you to easily view maps and routes no matter the lighting conditions. The display has a resolution of 240 x 320 pixels, which ensures that details are crisp and clear.

The device comes preloaded with Topo Active maps that include routable roads and trails for cycling and hiking. This feature is particularly useful for outdoor enthusiasts who like to explore new areas and discover new trails.

Furthermore, the GPS supports both GPS and GLONASS satellite systems, which means that you can track your location in even the most remote and challenging environments. This feature is particularly useful for hikers, campers, and outdoor enthusiasts who like to explore off-the-beaten-path locations.

The GPS device also includes 8GB of internal memory for map downloads, which is more than enough for most users. However, if you need additional storage space, there is a micro SD card slot that you can use to expand the memory.

8. Garmin Inreach® Mini 2 Marine Bundle, Compact Satellite Communicator, Portable Boating Handheld

Introducing the compact and lightweight satellite communicator, perfect for those who love to explore the great outdoors. This device allows for two-way messaging and interactive SOS globally (active satellite subscription required), providing peace of mind for any adventure. It is important to note that some jurisdictions may regulate or prohibit the use of satellite communication devices, so it is the responsibility of the user to know and follow all applicable laws in the jurisdictions where the device is intended to be used.

With the inclusion of a screw down mount and power cable, mounting the device at your helm is a breeze, allowing for easy access at a moment’s notice. The TracBack routing feature allows for easy navigation back to where you started. Share your location with loved ones back home anytime by using your MapShare page or with your coordinates embedded in your messages (active satellite subscription required).

The digital compass provides accurate heading information, even when you’re not moving. The Garmin Explore app and website can be synced with your compatible smartphone for trip planning and topographical mapping. Create waypoints, courses, activities and collections that can be synced to your device, allowing for seamless planning and execution.

Pair the device with your Garmin wearables and handhelds to send and receive messages and trigger an SOS (active satellite subscription required). Additionally, the device can be wirelessly paired with a compatible chartplotter to send and receive inReach messages directly from your helm.

The device boasts a battery life of up to 14 days in 10-minute tracking mode, ensuring that it will last for the duration of your adventure. Overall, this device is a must-have for any adventurer looking for a reliable and efficient way to communicate and navigate while exploring the great outdoors.

9. Montana 700i: Rugged Gps With Inreach Technology

The new model of this device boasts a rugged military-grade construction, making it a reliable and sturdy tool for outdoor activities. The 5” touchscreen display is now 50% larger than the previous model, allowing for easy viewability and navigation. The device also offers versatile mounting solutions, making it easy to use in any situation.

One of the most notable features of this device is its routable Topo maps, which come preloaded and offer detailed information on terrain and elevation. The device also supports multiple GNSS networks, including GPS and Galileo, and includes ABC sensors for accurate navigation.

In addition, the device allows for inReach satellite communication, which enables the user to trigger an interactive SOS to the GEOS 24/7 monitoring center in case of an emergency. Two-way messaging via the 100% global Iridium satellite network is also available, although an active satellite subscription is required and some jurisdictions regulate or prohibit the use of satellite communication devices.

The device is pro-connected with ANT+ technology, Wi-Fi connectivity, and BLUETOOTH wireless networking, which allows for direct-to-device access to BirdsEye Satellite Imagery downloads, location sharing, Connect IQ app support, and more. It is also compatible with the Garmin Explore website and app, which helps the user manage waypoints, routes, activities, and collections, use tracks, and review trip data from the field.

10. Global Gps Messenger For Outdoor Adventures

The Spot Gen4 is a reliable and essential communication tool designed for adventurers who frequently travel beyond the reach of cell towers. With its life-saving features, it provides peace of mind to both the user and their loved ones.

One of its standout features is the ability to send critical messages via satellite, enabling you to let family and friends know that you're safe or to send an SOS signal to emergency responders in case of danger. This feature proves especially useful in remote areas where cell phone coverage is not available.

Additionally, the Spot Gen4's Tracking feature can transmit your location updates, allowing your loved ones to track your movements in real-time. It's also an excellent tool for parents as they can keep one in their child's backpack to monitor their location on the way home from school.

With its Globalstar Satellite and GPS technology, Spot Gen4 can pinpoint your exact location and transmit the coordinates to friends and family or emergency rescue teams. This functionality ensures that help can reach you promptly in case of emergency.

The package comes with the Spot Gen4 device, a Strap and Carabiner, USB Cable, Batteries, and quick start guide. To access the features of this device, a subscription is required, and two service plans are available.

Purchasing and activating the Spot Gen4 is a straightforward process. Once you buy the device, you can activate it by selecting your preferred service plan. Then, you can embark on your adventure with the assurance that you have a reliable communication tool that can save your life in an emergency.

Best Handheld Gps For Marine Use FAQs

Are there any additional features that make a handheld GPS device better for marine use, such as fishfinder capabilities or emergency distress signals?

Yes, there are additional features that make a handheld GPS device better for marine use. Some handheld GPS devices come equipped with fishfinder capabilities, allowing you to locate fish in the water and determine their depth. Other features that may be useful for marine use include navigational aids such as buoys, markers, and hazard warnings. Additionally, some handheld GPS devices come with emergency distress signals such as an SOS button or a man overboard feature. These features can be crucial in case of an emergency and can help you quickly alert nearby boats or the Coast Guard. It's important to note that not all handheld GPS devices come with these additional features, so it's important to research and select a device that meets your specific needs and intended use.

How do handheld GPS devices compare to fixed mount marine GPS units?

Handheld GPS devices and fixed mount marine GPS units have some similarities and differences. Handheld GPS devices are portable and can be easily carried around. They are smaller, lighter and less expensive than fixed mount marine GPS units. These devices are great for personal use and can be used for hiking, camping, and other outdoor activities. They have a limited range and are not as accurate as fixed mount marine GPS units.

On the other hand, fixed mount marine GPS units are larger and more expensive. They are designed to withstand harsh weather conditions and are more accurate than handheld GPS devices. They have a longer range and are better suited for larger boats. They also offer more advanced features such as chart plotting, radar integration, and automatic identification system (AIS) integration.

In summary, handheld GPS devices are suitable for personal use and small boats, while fixed mount marine GPS units are better suited for larger boats and commercial use. The choice between the two depends on your specific needs and intended use.

How does the handheld GPS device handle water resistance and dust protection?

Handheld GPS devices are designed to be rugged and durable, which means they can withstand a range of environmental conditions, including water and dust. Most GPS devices come with an IP rating, which stands for Ingress Protection. This rating measures how well a device is protected against water and dust.

Typically, handheld GPS devices have an IPX7 rating, which means they can withstand being submerged in water for up to 30 minutes at a depth of 1 meter. Some devices have a higher rating, such as IPX8, which means they can be submerged in water at greater depths.

To protect against dust, most GPS devices have a sealed design. This means that the device's buttons and ports are covered to prevent dust from entering. Some GPS devices also have a rubberized coating that provides additional protection against dust and water.

In summary, handheld GPS devices are designed to be rugged and durable, with water and dust protection features that make them suitable for use in a range of environments.

How easy is it to use and navigate the menu of the best handheld GPS device for marine use?

The ease of use and navigation of the menu on handheld GPS devices for marine use can vary depending on the brand and model. However, the best handheld GPS devices for marine use are designed with user-friendliness in mind. They typically feature intuitive menus with easy-to-read icons and organized functions that allow users to quickly access important information and settings.

Moreover, most of these devices come with large, bright screens that are easy to read even in direct sunlight. They also feature user-friendly interfaces that simplify the process of entering and editing data, such as waypoints and routes.

Some of the best handheld GPS devices for marine use also come with preloaded maps, charts, and other navigational aids, making it easy for users to plan and navigate their trips on the water.

Overall, while the user interface of handheld GPS devices for marine use may vary, the best ones are designed to be intuitive and user-friendly, making navigation and operation easy and efficient.

Is it necessary to have a GPS device with preloaded marine charts or is it possible to download them separately?

While it is possible to download marine charts separately, having a GPS device with preloaded marine charts can be extremely beneficial and even necessary in some situations. Preloaded marine charts are specifically designed for use on water, and they provide important information such as water depths, navigational aids, and potential hazards. These charts are usually more accurate and reliable than charts that are downloaded from the internet, as they are created by reputable organizations and are regularly updated.

Downloading charts separately can also be a good option, especially if you need charts for a specific area that is not included in the preloaded charts. However, it is important to ensure that the charts you download are from a trustworthy source and are up-to-date. It is also important to note that downloading charts can be time-consuming and may require a strong internet connection.

In summary, while it is possible to download marine charts separately, having a GPS device with preloaded marine charts can provide more accurate and reliable information, and is often the preferred choice for marine navigation.

What are the best handheld GPS devices for marine navigation in terms of accuracy and reliability?

When it comes to handheld GPS devices for marine navigation, there are several options available in the market. However, the top two brands that come to mind are Garmin and Lowrance. Both offer a range of handheld GPS devices that are accurate and reliable.

Garmin's GPSMAP 78sc and GPSMAP 66i are excellent choices for marine navigation. They come with preloaded charts, and the GPSMAP 66i also has inReach satellite communication capabilities, making it a great option for offshore boating or fishing. Garmin devices are known for their accuracy and reliability, and they have a user-friendly interface that is easy to navigate.

Lowrance's HOOK2 5 and HOOK2 7 are also popular handheld GPS devices for marine navigation. They have high-resolution displays and come preloaded with US inland mapping, making them ideal for freshwater fishing and boating. They also have built-in GPS and sonar capabilities, which provide accurate and reliable navigation and fish-finding capabilities.

Ultimately, the best handheld GPS device for marine navigation depends on your specific needs and budget. However, Garmin and Lowrance are both reputable brands that offer a range of accurate and reliable GPS devices.

What are the key features to look for in a handheld GPS device for marine use?

If you are looking for a handheld GPS device for marine use, there are several key features to consider. Firstly, you should look for a device that is waterproof and buoyant, as it will be exposed to water and may fall overboard. You should also look for a device with a high-resolution screen that is easy to read in bright sunlight. Additionally, a device with a long battery life is essential for extended trips on the water.

Another important feature to consider is the accuracy and reliability of the GPS signal. Look for a device with a high-sensitivity receiver that can quickly and accurately lock onto GPS satellites. Some devices also offer additional features such as pre-loaded marine charts, tide and current data, and the ability to connect to other devices such as a VHF radio or sonar.

Finally, consider the size and weight of the device, as well as its ease of use. A bulky or complicated device may be difficult to carry and operate in a marine environment. By considering these key features, you can find a handheld GPS device that will meet your needs and help you navigate safely on the water.

What is the battery life of the best handheld GPS device for marine use?

The battery life of a handheld GPS device for marine use can vary depending on the specific model and usage. However, the best handheld GPS devices for marine use are designed with long battery life in mind, typically lasting between 16 and 20 hours on a single charge. This is especially important for marine use, where extended trips out on the water are common. Some devices also offer features like battery-saving mode or replaceable batteries to extend the life of the device. It is important to consider the battery life when choosing a handheld GPS for marine use, as well as other important features like water resistance, ease of use, and accuracy. Ultimately, the best option will depend on individual needs and preferences.

What is the price range for the best handheld GPS device for marine use?

The price range for the best handheld GPS device for marine use can vary based on the features and specifications offered by each device. Typically, a basic handheld GPS device for marine use can cost around $100 to $200, while more advanced models with additional features such as chartplotting, sonar, and wireless connectivity can cost upwards of $500 to $1000 or more. It's important to consider your specific needs and usage requirements when selecting a handheld GPS device for marine use, as this can help you determine the appropriate price range for your purchase. Additionally, it's recommended to compare prices and read reviews from other users before making a final decision to ensure you are getting the best value for your investment.

What is the screen size and resolution of the best handheld GPS device for marine use?

The screen size and resolution of the best handheld GPS device for marine use largely depends on personal preference and specific needs. However, most high-quality marine GPS devices come with a screen size ranging from 2.6 inches to 4 inches, and a resolution of 240 x 320 pixels to 480 x 800 pixels.

It’s important to note that a larger screen size may be beneficial for those who require a more detailed view of the map and navigational data, while a smaller screen size may be more practical for those looking for a more compact and portable device. Additionally, a higher resolution may provide sharper and clearer images, making it easier to read charts and maps.

Ultimately, it’s essential to consider the specific features and requirements needed for marine navigation when choosing the best handheld GPS device. Some important features to consider include waterproofing, battery life, and the ability to connect to other devices such as fish finders or radar systems.

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