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Navman S30 3D review


Review Date: 13 Feb 2009

Price when reviewed: £75


Reviewed By: James Morris

Our Rating 4 stars out of 5

User Rating 4 stars out of 5

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The S30 3D's headline feature is its ability to display landmarks in three dimensions. This didn't impress us very much, as the model database is small and doesn't even include Wembley Stadium. Fortunately, this isn't the S30's only trick.

Despite being the cheapest satnav here by some margin, all the basics are present. The 3½in screen has a 4:3 aspect ratio, so feels a little cramped. Navman's interface makes the most of the space, though, with a road sign-like block in the top right showing journey information, such as the estimated time of arrival (ETA). Another road sign-like block illustrates the next turning; the roundabout illustration is particularly helpful.

The POI database has sections for fuel, parking and SOS so you can find the nearest examples in each category to your current location. Another nice interface touch is the ability to navigate round a blocked route by simply clicking the affected road onscreen. You can then select Avoid Area and instructions will be recalculated accordingly.

Being a budget model, the S30 3D comes with UK and Ireland maps, although you can buy other areas. The maps are provided on disc; you just need to buy an unlock code. A speed camera database is preloaded, but it's a trial version. You get to use it for a year, after which updates will cost £35 per year; this seems rather a lot, when you consider that TomTom provides this for £20. It's possible to add traffic updates for £50.

There's no Bluetooth built in, so while you have access to the Navman Connect extended POI database using the desktop software, you can't get it live on the move via a mobile, unlike some of Navman's higher-end devices. In reality, this is a device best used for its core function of route navigation.

Navman's S30 3D is not a dream satnav, but if you just want a device to get you from A to B and you have a limited amount to spend, this is a deserved Budget Buy.

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