Summary: I had the opportunity to try this unit out on a 1200-mile trip around the Mid-West recently. I also had my 5" Garmin 1490 LMT running concurrently to see any variations in directions, ect. First, I might add, I updated both with the most current downloads available. Performance-wise it was basically a tie, with the 1490 actually giving me much better Traffic info due to a different type traffic software method being used in the 3597.
The best stand alone GPS out there.....IF you need it.
15 September 2013
Summary: This is the best stand alone GPS out there right now. Would've given it 5 stars except for one glaring issue which I will outline below. Who I am: Road warrior for my job. Am on the road for 2 weeks a month traveling the Southwest and have owned Nuvi GPS devices for the better part of a decade although I have used TomTom in the past. I don't find them on par with Nuvi.
Summary: The unit is decent and has good features but Garmin took out other features which I found useful like the pedestrian mode. Also, I feel the volume is not loud enough especially when the window is down and the traffic noise is loud. The uni comes with decent accessories. Recommended.
Summary: Sure they are expensive but also look and feel expensive and still half the price of getting inbuilt navis. Another reason we got two the same is because we swap cars in the family quite often and having the same one means we do not have to relearn. The magnetic attachment feature is a godsend. If I could improve the interface it would be that it should allow me enter a postcode before I select a street if I want to do that.
Summary: Everything I expected. Only gripe is the voice command feature. "Find address" function just doesn't comprehend my commands 1/2 the time. You might as well pull over and enter it manually. Other than this annoyance I'm glad I ordered this. Shipped quickly too!
Serving us well in an area where a lot has changed recently
Black Belt Systems "fyngyrz", Amazon
10 August 2013
Summary: This is a fast GPS; the display doesn't jerk or flicker, it just scrolls smoothly as you travel. It has good, high speed routing features, and the 3D display is usable. It is slim and pretty, easy to mount and unmount (clever magnetic attachment), and can run on its own batteries after charging a bit in the mount. The car icons... waste of time and programming. Too big and clunky. Speech recognition?
Summary: The features are not totally intuitive but, in time, they can be learned. The voice prompts are clear and often funny with politeness. Most address are accurate as this has not been the case in other GPS's. The routing is not always the most direct but this is due to the limited choices in route types. Overall this is the best GPS we have used or owned.
Summary: This is like those kitchen/washing appliances where you can get a perfectly good version for $300 but they add a digital display and keypad and charge $1200 for the fancy model. No one needs the 3597; cheaper models get the job done. The added features do not justify the high price. However, this one certainly looks good. Even though it isn't thin (why not? they make thin phones now) they have designed it to appear thin.
Summary: This was my first GPS experience. Worth every penny. Took 5 day trip from FL to MD with multiple stops en-route. Brought along maps as backup just in case but never looked at them. There is a moderately steep learning curve but a week was plenty of time to try most of the features and try them in the local area. The system is not absolutely fool proof so you do have to use some common sense at the end game particularly when multiple turns are coming very close together.