An outstanding product designed with a pilot in mind. Garmin did it again!
13 July 2014
Summary: I started with the 196 then to the 496 then to the 696. I always used the Garmin handheld a a backup to either a GNS 430 or 530. The 696 was an easy transition with outstanding capabilities. I have since transitioned to a G-1000 which I feel the 696 made the transition easier. I have always said that Garmin never misses the mark and the transition from one product to the other is seamless.
Summary: The GPSMAP 696 is a great accessory for the cockpit and I would highly recomend it for any VFR pilot. It has been invaluable in helping to navigate in, under, and around complex airspace topology of class B and C airports. With the terrain database loaded, you'll also know exactly where radio towers and other obstructions are and will receive onscreen warnings as you approach them.
Summary: I have been a Garmin fan for years and learned to fly IFR in a 430 equipped C 172. I sold my Garmin 396 when I started with the airlines. I thought the technology would go with the tablets so I kept watching all my friends with Fore-flight and it seems anybody that's anybody has that set up. Problem is that when you exit the large aircraft and climb in the smaller ones you have nothing for weather.