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Today for review Geeks has sent me over another of their GPS Devices, this one though is bit special in that it’s a themed type with Dale Jr as its theme. Yes, it’s a Nascar themed GPS unit that comes with pictures and movies featuring Dale Jr and the GPS uses Dale’s voice to guide you along the way. If you don’t want his voice you can of course change it to one of the other selections. The unit itself is really a portable media player with GPS functionality, it can do movies, music, pictures and even e-books. As a GPS unit it works well really, except for having Dale’s voice guide you, that can be annoying…

Author: Kristofer Brozio

Vendor: Geeks.com

Price: $73.99

Overall Rating: 4/5

RightWay Spotter Dale Jr. Edition 4.3″ Touchscreen Portable GPS Navigation System w/USA Maps, MP3 Player & Photo Viewer

This RightWay Spotter RW-500JR Dale Jr. Edition GPS is the ideal navigation system to help you get where you want quickly and easily. No more paper maps or getting out asking for directions! Simply enter an address on the 4.3-inch anti-glare touchscreen LCD display and the voice of Dale Jr. will guide you straight to your selected destination!

This RW-500JR comes with a 2 GB SD card preloaded with Dale Jr. photos and special behind-the-scenes videos, including maps of the United States. Easily find hotels, restaurants or gas stations with over 1.7 million Points of Interest (POI), including Dale Jr. & NASCAR POIs, such as Dale Jr.’s favorite pizza places, NASCAR Home Tracks, NASCAR Speed Parks and NASCAR Sprint Cup Series tracks & team garages!

With Text to Speech, the Spotter tells you the name of the street, when to turn and in what direction. In addition to superior GPS navigation, the RW-500JR allows you to listen to music, watch movies, read e-books and view photos for on the road entertainment!

General Features:
– Silver and black color
– Portable GPS Navigation System
– Dale Jr. Edition
– Dale Jr. himself provides turn by turn voice guidance
– 2 GB SD card preloaded with Dale Jr. photos, special behind-the-scenes videos, NASCAR and Dale Jr. POIs, Race Shop Tour route and maps of the United States
– 4.3-inch Anti-glare touchscreen LCD display
– Includes stylus
– Predictive data text entry
– Turn by turn voice prompts
– Text to Speech capabilities
– Over 1.7 million Points of Interest (POI)
– 3D/2D map view
– Safety map view
– Itinerary view
– Choice of route set-up
– Automatic re-route
– Route avoidance options
– Route optimization
– Gas calculator
– Built-in speaker
– Internal rechargeable 1000 mAh Lithium-ion battery
– Battery Life: 3 hrs working (avg.), 180 hrs sleeping (avg.)

Specifications:
– GPS Module: SiRF Atlas III
– Processor: Centrality AT642 372 MHz
– Operating System: Windows CE .Net 5.0
– Memory: 64 MB
– Screen: Anti-glare, 480 x 272 pixel
– Map Data: Navteq

Multimedia Features:
– Music Player: MP3, WMA
– Movie Player: AVI, WMV, ASF, DAT, MPEG, MPG, MOV
– E-Book Reader: TXT
– Photo Viewer: JPEG, BMP

Unit Dimensions:
– 3.4 x 5 x 0.75-inches (H x W x D, approximate)
– Weight: 8 oz.

Stop over at Geeks for all of your need including mobile related things and computer parts.

 

What’s in the Box?

We’ll start off with the video unboxing:

Then some still product pictures. It comes in a Dale Jr themed box:

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Inside you’ll find a user manual and quick start guide along with mounting hardware and car power adapter.

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The GPS unit itself feels well made, it’s actually rather heavy for its size. It’s primarily black with a silver border around the screen with logos for RightWay, Dale JR, his number and Nascar. There are two LEDs at the top left corner.

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There’s not much on the back except identification along with the speakers.

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On the top you’ll find the power button, sleep and menu buttons. Off to the side is the stylus which is a bit hidden, it just slides on and out. I like the fact that this GPS has a power switch and not a button, this way you know it’s powered off for sure.

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On the right side you’ll find the SD card slot, USB port, audio connection and the power connection.

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Impressions / Review:

The first thing you’ll need to do is put together the mounting hardware which consists of the back plate, GPS and mount itself.

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I used the Dale Jr GPS for a week traveling around. I did have pictures of it installed in my car but I have no clue where they are, so you won’t be seeing those…

When you first turn it on you’re greeted with the main menu with six choices for GPS, Video, Music, Picture, E-Book and System Set.

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I like the fact that it can play videos, not many can really. The added functionality of videos, music and E-Books really make this a portable media player with GPS functionality.

Since this is the Dale Jr edition you’ll find things related to him like Video and pictures.

There are three videos included:

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Videos are actually decent, sure they’re not HD, but they’re comparable to a cell phone, it has 480×272 resolution. For watching videos on the go it works fine. IT can play several file types like AVI, WMV, ASF, DAT, MPEG,MPG and MOV.

There’s several pictures as well:

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For pictures you can view JPEG or BMP.

There’s no music included, but you can add your own if you want.

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The E-Book reader and just read TXT files.

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The last choice is System Set with just a few very basic options including a File Browser.

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When you start up the GPS you’re greeted by Dale Jr himself.

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You can see tips at startup or you can disable them if you don’t want to.

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The Dale Jr GPS uses CoPilot for quick navigation, you don’t have to use it though, it’s basically just a direct shortcut to getting started.

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Pressing the menu button brings you to the first of three screens of option, then you just press the arrow to advance to the next one.

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Under Settings you’ll find three more screens for GPS options like setting the cursor, Routing, Map, Map Styles, POIs, Volume etc:

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Here’s a few of those expanded:

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Like any good GPS you can select map style like for day or night driving.

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Under GPS Pointers you can make the pointer look like a car or just an arrow.

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Under POIs you can select what you want to be shown from several options.

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Using the actual GPS is like most others. On the right side you’ll see the distance and ETA along with the next turn. There’s also battery status and satellite status at the top.

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You can also change the view to 2D if you prefer:

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… and you can view the actual route in text:

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This GPS is Dale Jr themed and Dale will guide you on your way in his voice. He doesn’t speak street names though, but you can change the voice if you want with John or Lisa.

He says things like “In three tenths of a mile, hang a left” or “you drive, I’ll ride shotgun” in his southern, good ol’ boy accent. It’s fun for the first couple miles, but I’ll take a regular voice that actually tells me street names.

The display is sensitive but it’s not exactly finger friendly. For most things you can use your finger but for things like selecting files you’ll need to use the stylus or your fingernail to make accurate selections.

The battery life is abysmally short at just about 3 hours, but if you’re using it in the car you can use the adapter.

The actual GPS works great really, it works on clear days or with light cloud cover or even rain really. I really had no problems getting a signal and keeping it. It’s accurate and updates quickly while you’re on the move. Satellite acquisition is fast, in matter of seconds I was locked on and it had my position.

The view is similar to other GPS units out there, you can see everything and change the views as need be.

Conclusion:

The RightWay Spotter Dale Jr GPS is a decent one really, it’s got a nice large screen and multi-media capabilities. It works great as a GPS device, it’s accurate and quick to find a satellite.

In my opinion the Dale Jr voice needs to go, but those who are fan of Nascar might like it, I’m not a fan personally so I don’t care for it too much. If you like Dale Jr then the inclusion of the bonus material is a nice touch.

The 2gig memory card is a bit small in my opinion, I’d upgrade it to a larger one if you wanted to take media with you.

I don’t know why they didn’t include a standard USB cable or an AC adapter so you can charge in the house.

Pros:
+Easy to use
+Nice large screen
+Accurate GPS
+Quick satellite acquisition
+Dale Jr themed (if you’re into car racing)
+Plays videos, music and pictures

Cons:
-No USB Cable included
-Small capacity memory card
-Short battery life
-Not quite finger friendly
-No AC Adapter included

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