Sunday, March 18, 2012

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Garmin nuvi 350 review

Garmin_nuvi_350

UPDATE: Though still available and supported, Garmin has discontinued the nuvi 350. For newer models, check out my Garmin nuvi comparison chart.

The Garmin nuvi 350 has proven to be an incredibly popular touch-screen GPS navigator. Garmin bills the nuvi as a “a Personal Travel Assistant™ that combines a GPS navigator, language translator and travel guide capability, an MP3 player, an audio book player, a currency and measurement converter, a world clock, and a digital photo organizer.” The nuvi has the newest generation of GPS chipsets, the SiRFSTAR III, resulting in fast satellite lock and improved reception. It also speaks street names, so you’ll get “turn left on Highway 128” instead of “turn left in 200 feet.”

Stepping up to the nuvi 360 adds Bluetooth for hands free cell phone use.

Compare prices on the Garmin nuvi 350

To see how the nuvi 350 compares to other models, check out my Garmin nuvi comparison chart.

More Garmin nuvi 350 reviews

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About Rich Owings

Rich is the owner, editor and chief bottle-washer for GPS Tracklog. Connect with him on Twitter, Facebook or Google Plus.

Comments

  1. aaron morton says:

    I really like the 350 model but cannot find out about 2 features i’d like. First is creating track logs (so i can geo tags photos) and the second is feeding live gps data into my mac book via usb or blue tooth. Do you know if any of these features are available?

  2. Aaron,
    No, you cannot create / export track files, and I don’t believe you can stream NMEA data. The limited feature set has been a complaint about the nuvi in some quarters. See http://gpstracklog.com/2006/08/does_the_nuvi_h.html

  3. Carol Gorove says:

    I am very frustrated at trying to get information from the online manual. Can I buy one for my nuvi 350 rather than having to refer to an online manual? I cannot refer to my PC when I’m driving somewhere and have a question.
    I set a route and now am having trouble “getting rid of it”. Every time I open the GPS, it goes that old route (which didn’t work for me anyway).

  4. Carol,
    I don’t know if Garmin made a hard copy manual for the 350. It’s not listed for sale on their site. I’d call and ask for one.
    In terms of the routing issue, you should be able to push “stop” or set a new destination. Barring that, try a full reset. You’ll lose all favorites, recent locations and your home location though. To do this, hold your finger on the upper right corner of the screen while powering on. Press “Yes” when prompted.

  5. Simon Barnard says:

    Hi Rich, it was great to see you and Lisa this weekend. Congrats on your new baby boy! I like your site, very awesome with lots of info. Keep in touch and let us know when you go to NM.
    Take care,
    Simon and Emily

  6. Hey, it was good to see you and Emily too. I’ll keep you posted on the move. Let me know if you have any questions about which nuvi to get.

  7. Emmanuel Etgar says:

    The reception indication on my nuvi 370 is Zero, not even one stick, unless I open the antenna. When I open the antenna however, the reception is great, but it’s so cumbersome! I thought this unit comes with the highly sensitive SIRF chipset. Any body encountered this situation? And is this normal for this unit?

  8. Emmanuel,
    Yes, this is normal. The 200 series has an internal antennae, so you could perhaps exchange it for a nuvi 270, but you would lose a lot of features. I expect that Garmin will ultimately upgrade the 300 series to include an internal antennae — the 300 i-series perhaps!

  9. Musallam Khalifa says:

    Hi!
    I’m looking for the navigation software for middle-east map ( Saudi arabia etc) of Garmin’s nuvi-350 GPS unit.
    Please guide me how to get it through internet.
    Thanking You
    Regards
    Musallam

  10. Hi. I bought Garmin c330 streetpilot a year ago with an antenna and my dad also bought same model a year before me. The thing is that both of the Garmin c330 often give us “lost signal” signs and it happens alot to the extend that I do not think I can depend on this device. I was wondering if Garmin nuvi350 has a lot of better reception than c330. I am not really interested in options like bule-tooth or mp3 but I want a GPS device that can direct me to the place I want to go without too much of “lost signal” sign. I would greatly appreciate any advice. Thank you.

  11. James,
    Yes, all the nuvis have a high sensitivity chipset, which will give you greatly improved reception under canopy, in urban canyons, etc.

  12. Thank you for the quick reply. For the nuvi series, do they also sell antenna separately? And also, do all the nuvi series have same reception quality and if there are differences among them which one has the best reception quality. This time I really want to buy a portable GPS device with strong reception even if I need to pay more. Thank you.

  13. James,
    The GPS antenna is integrated into the design of the nuvi. There are reports that the internal (non-flip up type) antenna found on the nuvi 200 and 700 series is a little slower to lock satellites, but these reports are in dispute. To be safe, go with a 300 or 600 series unit.

  14. I was checking out Walmart website and the description they have on the web is that 350 is external antenna and 360 has Built-in antenna. Does it mean 350 still have an internal antenna like all NUVI series? Because I believe the one that has a built-in antenna should have more quality reception signal. Thank you very much.

  15. James,
    Their description is misleading. Both have the same, built-in, flip up antenna. I can see why some people might call it an external, but it is part of the unit, as can be seen in the images here…
    https://buy.garmin.com/shop/shop.do?cID=134
    Notice the difference between the 200s, 700s and the other modes.

  16. Hi, thank you for clearing my confusion. By the way, while I was on the Garmin’s website, I also downloaded the manual of nuvi 350 and 360 and what I noticed is that on the manual it says 360 has 12 channel SiRFSTAR III while 350 has just WAAS enabled. From these manual, I am assuming that 350 doesn’t have SiRFSTAR III and 360 has SiRFSTAR III. Is my assumption correct? Thank you very much.

  17. James,
    Looks like Garmin should be clearer on their site too. Both the 350 and 360 have the SiRFstar III chipset AND are WAAS enabled.

  18. Is there a navigation software for INDIA & BANGLADESH for a 350?

  19. Les Johnson says:

    I am about to venture into my first GPS purchase. I need one that gives me excellent regional coverage (with voice instructions) and will, on occasion, need it for North American travel. I deliver cars throughout the St louis metro area.
    Any suggestions?
    Thank you.

  20. Les,
    You said North America. If you’re going into Canada, check out the Garmin nuvi 250. The 260 will call out street names too, while the new 260W will add a wider screen. I definitely recommend a nuvi. You can see the details in this post…
    http://gpstracklog.com/2007/03/garmin_nuvi_com.html

  21. Hi
    I b recently bought a NUVI 350.
    As we have planned to go to Italy in august, I wouldlike to buy a map for that country or even for Europe. Is it possible? If so at what price and where can I buy it?
    Thank you for your answer.

  22. Jack,
    I’d recommend City Navigator Europe NT (http://www8.garmin.com/cartography/mapSource/citynavntEurope.jsp). You can get it from Amazon for $200-$300, depending on format, etc.

  23. nellie gibbins says:

    How can I program my gps nuvi 350 for my Utah streets? We have numbers for street names like (Harmon’s Grocery Store, 1189E 700S. The gps will not accept it. Help!!!

  24. Nellie,
    Hang on; I’m looking into it.

  25. Nellie,
    Here’s the answer from Garmin support:
    To find addresses listed in this manner, enter only the numbers (do not enter N, E, S, or W).
    1) Select: Where to?> Address
    2) State (Utah)
    3) City (Search All)
    4) Enter House Number (1189)
    5) Enter Street (700), select “700 (E, N, S, St…)”
    6) Scroll down to Salt Lake City
    7) The address “1189 E 700 S, Salt Lake City, UT 84102” should be a search result.
    Of course you could go ahead and select the city in step 3.

  26. nellie gibbins says:

    Thanks Rich for your quick reply. Haven’t tried it yet but will this afternoon. It’s so good to find really smart people that will help you with your problem.

  27. lost in Europe says:

    I recently left the US for an extended work assignment in Western Europe. Before leaving the US, I paid the $300 that Garmin gouges people for the European maps and installed them in my Nuvi 350. I have never been more disappointed with anything I have purchased in my entire life. So far we’ve used this unit to travel the Netherlands from west to east, north to south and parts of Germany also. It has repeatedly and reliably lost itself on the route it chose. By that, I mean that you are travelling the route it chose(a main highway in some cases) and all of the sudden it shows that you are traveling off road and begins recalculating. I have several colleagues who purchased TomToms in Europe for less than I paid for the Garmin European mapset alone and their units work flawlessly. Very disappointed in the performance of the nuvi350 in Europe so far.

  28. Thanks for sharing that.

  29. The 2009 North America update on maps will be released in April, according to the Garmin website. Will all new Garmins include the 2009 maps or what will be the cost to get the newer maps? We are in the market for one and this is a good time to find out this information. Thanks.

  30. Faith,
    New devices should have the 2009 maps, but occasionally some will slip through without them. In the past, Garmin has offered a free upgrade to anyone buying a device with older maps after the update’s official release date. If someone at Garmin support won’t do this, call back and talk to someone else. Other than that, I would buy from some place with a good return policy.

  31. James Shawhan says:

    I am considering the Nuvi 350 and would like to know if…….
    A. By using a second SD card it will increase the memory available for additional mp3 music files.
    B Also will the unit play WAVE files created by a voice recorder and stored on my computer.
    C. How is the speaker sound quality?
    Thanks.

  32. James,
    A. Sure, you just swap out cards
    B. No, it won’t play .wav files
    C. It sucks. The best thing is to use the headphone / audio out jack and run it to an auxiliary input if your car stereo has one.

  33. We purchased a Garmin Nuvi 350 last year in US, but we live in New Zealand. We are travelling to Western Europe Holland, France,Portugal and Switzerland soon and wondered if we can download off internet maps for these countries. Please guide us through

  34. Neil,
    Yes, you can. This should get you what you need…
    http://gpstracklog.com/2007/12/free-maps-for-y.html

  35. I am purchasing a GPS for my husband. What is the best most up-to-date device at this point on the market?

  36. Patti,
    That’s a broad question, but…
    Wait until the middle of the month for the Garmin nuvi 880 (tentative availability date 6/16). It should have the best voice recognition system of any unit in the marketplace. I’ll put up a post as soon as it’s available.
    Or, if he is a commuter dealing with significant traffic problems, I’d get him the Dash Express. Here’s my review…
    http://gpstracklog.com/2008/05/dash-express-re.html
    Hope that helps.

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  39. I want a GPS where I can enter the roads ahead of time then follow the entered route. What Garmin version(s) will allow this?

  40. Troy, You can’t pick specific roads with a Garmin, but with a 700 or 800 series nuvi, you can construct a route with all your destinations. If I want to go a certain way, I just insert an extra destination (via point) on that street.

  41. I am purchasing a GPS for my mum. And I prefer this garmin nuvi 350 so much because It’s very easy to use.
    I recommend this series.

  42. Jennifer Ray says:

    I have a nuvi 760, and have uploaded 2009 maps to it, but I can’t get it to find addresses. It will give me the correct locations of stores, restaurants, etc., but when I search for an address (even after acquiring sattelites), I always get a “no match found” answer. Any thoughts on how to fix this? Thanks for any help you can give.

  43. Jennifer Ray says:

    FYI, I figured out how to fix my problem. I had some audio files loaded onto the nuvi (NOT on a separate card). I took them off and everything works fine now.

  44. Jennifer,
    Do you have any idea why this happened? Was the memory full or were they unsupported file types?

  45. Galen Lapka says:

    I recently purchased a Nuvi 350 from BuyDig – works great. Someone told me the 350 and 360 have been discontinued and replaced with the 250 and 260 (seems strange they’d go to a lower number) I’ve looked on the Garmin website and the 350 doesn’t seem to be available anymore from them, but the 250 appears to have much fewer features. Is this true?
    Thnx

  46. Yes, the 350 and 360 have been discontinued. They haven’t really been replaced by the 250 and 260 though. Newer models do have some new features however. Also, Garmin will continue to support the 350 and 360.

  47. Do the Nuvi 350 or Nuvi 270 have pedestrian mode of operation?
    What car navigation gps would you recommend for walking throug unknown citis?
    Thank you

  48. Yes, all the nuvis have a pedestrian mode. You may want to consider the nuvi 500 or 550, which have a compass screen (to point you towards your destination), something missing from many auto navigation devices.

  49. I have a nuvi 360, it had been doing pretty well but lately the voice prompts are “cracking” and few days ago the voice totally disappeared. How can i fix this?
    Thank you.

  50. First, I would try a firmware update if one is available.
    If that doesn’t work, back up your favorites and then do a full reset.
    If that doesn’t work, it’s probably a hardware problem.

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