Garmin Zumo 400 Review

Overall Score

Although no longer considered a new product, the Garmin Zumo 400 unit is still current as Garmin has not released a successor to it. I’ve had this unit for around 8 months now and have used it on several occasions. Before we delve into the unit, here are the details…

Specifications :

3.5-inch glove-friendly colour touch screen
Preloaded with UK and Ireland mapping
Superbright sunlight readable, UV-resistant display makes it easy to view your screen
Removable lithium-ion battery; up to four hours of use
Glove-friendly touch screen with left-handed controls makes it easy to operate
Motorcycle console for trip information, including programmable fuel gauge to warn you when its time to fill up
Motorcycle mount with standard 4-hole AMPS pattern so you can mount it almost anywhere
Includes Garmin Lock, an anti-theft feature
Custom caps, available in a variety of colors, to reflect your style
Supports optional FM TMC traffic alerts
Supports optional XM NavTraffic with XM weather, and XM Satellite Radio
Voice announces streets by name
Look up addresses and points of interest
Choose 2D or 3D map perspective
Upload custom POIs, including alerts for speed zones and safety cameras
Built-in MP3 player and JPEG Picture Viewer
Waterproof: IEC 60529 IPX7 standards (submersible in one meter of water for up to 30 min.)

Opening the box :

Unfortunately.. I threw the box away about 5minutes after taking the unit out of it, and did not take any photographs. It’s a pretty standard affair and nothing really flashy. It is rather a large box though for the size of unit. Inside is the included RAM mount pictured below along with bare-ended power leads and the usual manuals and CD’s.

[timg]IMG_9024.jpg[/timg]

The unit :

Overall it’s a pretty good entry-level motorcycle sat nav. You lose out on some of the extras of the higher end zumo units, the main being text-to-speech and bluetooth. Although this is a little annoying, you can still easily get around this for significantly less than the price of the higher end units.

The screen is bright and easy to see even in direct sunlight. Although the touch screen is a little clunky to use while wearing motorcycle gloves, the large rubberised buttons on the left more than make up for this as they do pretty much all the tasks you need while on the move. The top two buttons control zoom and menu functions.The button just below these cycles through different information and the mp3 player. The lowest button enters the volume controls.
Also a nice feature is the ability to save the route you just drove to a SD memory card and upload it to another Zumo unit. You can also create the routes before hand on the unit itself. The accuracy of this unit is actually pretty good even though the technology is a few years old. From the photo of the unit below you can see the signal strength, bearing in mind this was in my house. Out on the road the directions are clear and there was no routes that I would have disagreed with. If you ever do decide you want to take a detour, the unit very quickly recalculates, usually avoiding u-turns where it can.

[timg]IMG_9027.jpg[/timg]

Mounting it on a bike :
The RAM mount gives you two options for mounting the unit. Either it can replace part of the clamp for the clutch lever, or alternatively you can use the included u-bolt to clamp it to your handle bars (or any other bar you have of the right diameter).

I’ll just let the pictures do the talking on the mounting system in use.

[timg]IMG_9018.jpg[/timg]

You’ll notice the bolts are a little too long. That can be easily fixed, however I have not had the time to do so yet myself.

[timg]IMG_9023.jpg[/timg]

[timg]IMG_9022.jpg[/timg]

You will notice it doesnt really stick out that much and is pretty easy to see and use. Also, people may note that I didn’t show the mount on its own.. This is pretty much because I take it off whenever I’m not using the unit. The power cable unplugs easily and quickly. The mounting stub on the clutch lever doesn’t really get in the way. The cradle however does get a little annoying when no GPS is attatched.


Conclusion :

Overall, I really liked this unit. It may be lacking a few extras that other higher end units have, but honestly I feel that a price advantage is a better thing to have at the expense of features that most people would not ever use. If you want a entry-level motorcycle sat nav without all the extra frills, then I would definately reccomend this unit for you.

Discuss this review here.

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