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Installing the Garmin RV 760LMT GPS Navigation System.

 


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2017 Update. A new version of Garmin's flagship Navigation system is available - the RV 770LMT. Since I changed vehicles to one with an integrated Navigation system, I won't likely be reviewing the 770LMT. I am not sure what the differences are.

 

The Garmin RV 760LMT is one of several Recreational Vehicle oriented GPS Navigation systems available on the market today (the others being the Rand McNally 7720, Magellan RV9165, and the TomTom 1605. The characteristics of these systems are large screens (typically 7in), RV oriented repair facilities, routes, campground destinations (most have a RV Park database), and the capability to plan routes considering the size of the RV. This is a sure way to get the maximum fun out of camping, as you don't have to worry about finding the campground.


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Garmin RV 760LMT and 770LMT

 


Rand McNally RVND 7720

 


Magellan RoadMate RV9165T-LM

 


TomTom VIA 1605M

 

 

Generally all of the units offer lifetime maps, but there is where the similarities end. The most advanced unit in my opinion is the Garmin RV 760LMT as it has several extended functions that increase the unit's capability. Of course, the fact the Garmin is also the highest-priced unit is reflected by this increased functionality. One nice feature - perhaps an essential feature - is the inclusion of a RV campground database. However, like all such products, the database has missing data, such as state parks and other campground locations.

 

Salient Characteristics of the Garmin RV 760LMT:

  • Lifetime Maps.
  • Lifetime traffic subscription.
  • Bluetooth connectivity to smart and cell phones.
  • RV Park database.
  • Optional connectivity to Garmin EcoRoute HD (vehicle OBDC interface).
  • Optional connectivity to Garmin Smart Link (provides weather and other information).
  • Optional connection to video camera (wireless) or video source (wired).

 


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Some thought went into the mounting of the system. Generally, my experience with the window suction cup mounts is that they don't work all that well. So I pretty much knew from day one that I would be upgrading the mounting system to a RAM mount. If you have never seen RAM mounts, they are really heavy duty mounting systems with metal arms and bases (although the GPS shroud is made of plastic). When purchasing such a mount, you have to buy all of the items separately.

For the case cradle itself, you have two options - a full cradle (which includes a sunshade) and a "shorty" cradle, which allows you to remove the GPS from the mount. I went with the full cradle. Note that the shorty cradle allows easy removal of the GPS while leaving the mount on the vehicle, it is also less secure to theft.

 

RAM Cradle Options
  


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RAM-HOL-GA70LU
Fully enclosed RAM Cradle.

RAM-HOL-GA61LU
Fully enclosed RAM Cradle.

RAM-HOL-GA54U
Shorty RAM Cradle

 

RAM components.


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Reference: RAM Mount Part Numbers I used:

  • Cradle: RAM-HOL-GA61LU (or RAM-HOL-GA54U if you want the shorty).
  • Diamond Plate with 1" ball: RAM-B-238U
  • Round Plate with 1" ball: RAM-B-202U
  • Arm: RAM-B-201U-C
  • Locking Knob: RAM-KNOB3LU (optional for additional security).

 

Ancillary functions:

If you have a smartphone, then the Garmin Smart Link is available - for both iOS and Android operating systems that has the ability to rdisplay weather radar, traffic cameras, as well as other functions to the Garmin 760. As well, the EcoRoute HD can either use the Garmin RV 760 (in automobile mode) or an Android device to display OBDC data, inclulding fuel mileage, diagnostic information, and real-time engine parameters - RPM, Temperature, etc.

 


Weather Radar via Smart Link

Traffic Cam via Smart Link

The advanced features do require a one-time charge, but for the most part, the charge is nominal. In the US, both the Advanced Weather and Traffic Cam fees are $4.99, which is not expensive at all. The Traffic feature however, is a more expensive $19.

Garmin says the only difference between the Traffic feature found in the Smart Link application vs. the LMT version built into the Garmin RV 760LMT is the delivery method. The RV 760LMT uses an antenna to retrieve a broadcast signal, while the Smart Link version uses your cell phone's data plan. Therefore, it might become rather expensive to use the Smart Link version as it could use up a lot of your data minutes.

 

 

Also, the Smart Link applications seem to work better on Android devices, and also work with more GPS model displays than the iOS system. If you own an Android Smartphone, I could recommend the Advanced Weather application, and perhaps the Traffic Cam, as they are not expensive. However, the Traffic feature might be expensive to use from your phone, especially since it is also included in the Garmin RV 760LMT, and I would not recommend buying it unless the Garmin RV 760LMT does not provide good reception of the data (note: the data is only typically available in larger metropolitan areas).

You can download Garmin Mechanic (free) for Android devices to display the EcoRoute HD information. Unfortunately, iOS devices are not supported.

 

 

Videos:

The videos below provide a tremendous amount of information about the more significant aspects of the Garmin RV 760LMT.

 


Part 1. Description and mounting options.

 

 


Part 2. Updating the firmware and maps.

 

 


Part 3. Basic Operation.

 

 


Part 4. Ancillary functions and setup.

 

 


Part 5. Entering a route (destination).

 

 


Part 6. EcoRoute HD.

 

 


Part 7. Connecting a Smart Phone and Smart Link to the 760LMT.

 

 


Part 8. Advanced Smart Link features.

 

 


Part 9. Video Camera Functionality.

 

 


Part 10. Using BaseCamp.

 

Resources:

 

 


Last reviewed and/or updated June 15, 2017