Thursday, July 20, 2006

Garmin GPSmap 496 Updates and Downloads

GPSmap 496 Updates & Downloads

Update Unit Software with WebUpdater
Use WebUpdater to automatically keep your operating software current.

Additional Software
FlightBook Ver. 2.4 as of Jan 24, 2005 Download
USB Drivers Ver. 2.1 as of Aug 26, 2004 Download
xImage Ver. 2.3 as of Mar 23, 2005 Download

Unit Software
GPSMAP 496 Ver. 2.40 as of Jul 20, 2006 Download

(For new owners, check back often to this free download link as a new product has many unit software upgrades in the beginning!) gpsmap 496 blog guy

GPSmap 496 ($2795) vs. GPSmap 396 ($2195)

As we have been asked the obvious....what does the GPSMAP 496 do that would make me want one over the GPSMAP 396....If you strictly are purchasing the unit for weather in the cockpit, then the GPSMAP 396 may be the way to go, but if you want some unbelievable features - check out this:

The $600 difference alone can be covered by the 1st feature of the built-in StreetPilot GPS (all the detailed street level maps are preloaded - no messing with software) with turn-by-turn voice navigation for anywhere in US and Canada. A stand-along Garmin StreetPilot 2720 has a street price of about $800.

But take a look at the other upgrades!

These upgrades include:

Built-In Automotive Streetpilot GPS - Preloaded City Navigator NT automotive street mapping, with turn-by-turn voice prompts, for North America (US and Canada)

Go from the skyways to the highways with no map software loading required. Land the aircraft at your destination, grab your GPSMAP 496 and get driving directions to your meeting, hotel, etc.!

Garmin SafeTaxi data provides detailed taxiway diagrams and position information for over 650 U.S. Airports. Consider this for low visibility taxing!

AOPA Airport Directory offers detailed information on over 7,400 U.S. Airports, along with airports of entry for Canada, Mexico, and the Caribbean. Includes names and phone numbers of FBOs and fuel/services facilities, plus ground transportation, local attractions and more.
Very cool - don't have to carry that huge book with you in the aircraft.

Fast 5 Hz GPS updating of map data and "Panel" display gives a smoother, near "real-time" presentation of turn coordinator and HSI for added realism and safety. Have an electrical failure and this feature can assist you on getting the aircraft down.

Enhanced terrain and aviation databases will supply even more visual reference to the pilot. The addition of private airports and heliports to the database provides more navigation and emergency "nearest" options.

garmin gpsmap 496 blog guy

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

GPSmap 496 Basic Specifications

GPSmap 496 Features:

  • WAAS-enabled, 12 parallel channel GPS receiver
  • Display Size: 3.75” Diagonal, 480 x 320 pixels
  • Display: 256-color, sunlight readable TFT with adjustable backlight
  • Unit Dimensions: 5.7” W x 3.2” H x 1.9” D
  • Preloaded SafeTaxi airport diagrams
  • Built-in AOPA airport directory data
  • Smart Airspace™ feature makes it easier than ever to identify what airspace lies ahead
  • Built-in Jeppesen database with terrain and obstacle databases
  • Terrain/obstacle display with pop-up warnings
  • 5 Hz update rate on maps and "Panel" instruments
  • Supports optional XM Weather and XM Satellite Radio
  • Supports optional TIS traffic alerts
  • Preloaded with detailed City Navigator NT street maps and POI database
  • Upload custom POIs, including alerts for speed zones, safety cameras, and more
  • Provides voice-prompt road guidance when the power/speaker cable is connected
  • Accepts standard Garmin data cards and pre-programmed data cards
  • Rechargeable lithium-ion battery offers 5 to 15 hours of use depending on backlight settings
  • Water resistant, IEC 60529 IPX7 standards (submersible to 1 meter for 30 minutes)

gpsmap 496 blog guy

Great Screen Shots of the GPSmap 496

Click on the link below to access some great pictures of the GPSMAP 496

Screen Shots of the new GPSMAP 496

July 19, 2006 - Garmin GPSmap 496 Introduced

Garmin’s® Portable GPSMAP® 496 Gives More Power and Features

OLATHE, Kan./July 19, 2006/PR Newswire — Garmin International Inc., a unit of Garmin Ltd. (Nasdaq: GRMN), today introduced the GPSMAP 496, a full-color, portable aviation device that expands on the GPSMAP 396’s features by incorporating Garmin’s SafeTaxi™ airport diagrams, Garmin’s Smart Airspace™, AOPA’s Airport Directory data, enhanced high-resolution terrain database, aviation database with private airports and heliports, accelerated GPS update rate, and pre-loaded automotive maps of North America or Europe. These features are in addition to the real-time XM WX Satellite Weather™ that puts powerful weather information at the pilot’s fingertips.

“With more power and information than any other portable handheld on today’s market, the GPSMAP 496 is an essential piece of equipment for any pilot,” said Gary Kelley, Garmin’s vice president of marketing. “The information on this mini-MFD helps increase safety and situational awareness during all phases of flight – from taxiing to navigating around terrain and weather. And thanks to the pre-loaded street maps, it also gives pilots the ability to navigate unfamiliar roadways with the same ease that they navigate the airways.”

The Garmin SafeTaxi airport diagrams help pilots navigate unfamiliar airports with confidence. Over 650 U.S. airport diagrams come pre-loaded on the unit. The charts identify runways, taxiways, and hangars, as well as the aircraft’s exact location on the field. Garmin anticipates offering SafeTaxi updates regularly. International airport diagrams will also be available in the future.

When in the air, Garmin’s new Smart Airspace feature makes it easier than ever to identify what airspace lies ahead. Smart Airspace automatically highlights airspace close to the pilot’s current altitude and de-emphasizes airspace away from the current altitude, which gives pilots increased situational awareness.

The Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA) Airport Directory data are also available in electronic format on the GPSMAP 496. Recognized throughout the industry as one of the most comprehensive sources of airport information, the AOPA’s Airport Directory includes information for over 5,300 public-use airports and more than 7,000 FBOs, such as pilot services, ground transportation, lodging, restaurants, and local attractions. In addition, Garmin’s version of the AOPA’s Airport Directory highlights airports where pilots can save on fuel by using self-service fueling locations.

In addition, the GPSMAP 496 has an enhanced, higher resolution terrain database that has over ten times as much data as the GPSMAP 396’s terrain database. The new database lets pilots see vivid depictions of proximity hazards that require their attention. Pilots can customize their own minimum clearance limits to receive terrain cautions, which pop up as digital thumbnail images.
Pilots will also appreciate the unit’s increased GPS update rate, which is five times faster than any other handheld on today’s market. This impressive new attribute results in near-real-time updates of the aircraft’s analog indicators, such as the HSI and turn rate indicator. Viewing the GPSMAP 496’s display in any light is easy, thanks to the device’s 256-color, high-resolution (480x320-pixels) TFT display. The unit also features a USB interface and rechargeable lithium-ion battery pack.

As with the GPSMAP 396, the GPSMAP 496 will continue to offer optional XM WX Satellite Weather™ (U.S. only) that features Next Generation Radar (NEXRAD), Aviation Routine Weather Reports (METARs), Terminal Aerodrome Forecasts (TAFs), Temporary Flight Restrictions (TFRs), Lightning and Winds Aloft, and several other important weather products to help pilots make informed navigational decisions. The weather data may be laid directly over the unit’s Jeppesen® and topographic map databases. Weather information is delivered to the unit through Garmin’s new GXM™ 30A smart antenna, which is included with the GPSMAP 496.

On the road, the 496 serves as a premium in-car navigation system with automatic route calculation to any destination and turn-by-turn voice-prompted directions along the way. The GPSMAP 496 is Garmin’s first aviation handheld to include pre-loaded City Navigator® NT maps of North America or Europe. These detailed street maps include a huge points of interest database — including hotels, restaurants, gas stations, ATMs, and attractions. Map data are provided by NAVTEQ™ – a world leader in premium-quality mapping.

When traveling by water, the GPSMAP 496 is compatible with Garmin’s new BlueChart® g2 technology. These optional data cards turn the GPSMAP 496 into a color chartplotter that displays integrated marine maps with shaded depth contours, port plans, inter-tidal zones, spot soundings, wrecks, navaids, restricted areas, cable areas, and anchorages.

XM WX Satellite Weather data and audio are provided by XM Satellite Radio. Please see for pricing and other details.