BaseCamp vs MapSource
I just noticed an offer of a download for "Base Camp" from Garmin's web site. I read the information but am still puzzled about what I would use it for beyond what I can do with MapSource.

Does anyone have an opinion?

Mike Flannigan
See Ken's latest post on the subject.


Mapsource is a dead product, you can still download it, but it is no more developed.

Mapsource has following features, that Garmin is unable to remake in BaseCamp:
- clean design, fast start, simple use,
- fast and reliable address search,
- zip search,
- support for marine maps,
- support for old devices with RS232 interface.

BaseCamp has following advantages:
- included management for user data like POI, tracks, routes,
- support for raster maps,
- possibility to display maps directly from device,
- support for new outdoor devices (transfer of data),
- 3D view of maps,
- support for active routing (which IMHO is a doubtful feature itself).

For me the main problem with BaseCamp is that is plagued with pop-ups that make working with BaseCamp really annoying. You have all the time to close some something, that blocks view of the map.
Thanks for that explanation.
Mike Flannigan
The newer model handheld devices (Oregon x50, eTrex 20/30, Montana, GPSMap 62, etc) have switched to a file-based system of storing user data (waypoints, tracks, routes) that Mapsource doesn't understand. On these devices, if you save a couple waypoints today they will be placed in a file named waypoints_07-27-12.gpx. If you save a few tomorrow they will be placed in waypoints_07-28-12.gpx and so forth.

When receiving data from a file-based device, Mapsource only looks at the file named Current.gpx which is where the older models place everything. On the new models, Current.gpx only stores your active track.

However, Mapsource can still send data to the new devices since they will import everything from the .gpx file that it leaves on the unit. You can also send maps to the new devices with Mapsource.

But these devices also support raster imagery (scanned paper maps, satellite imagery, etc) in the form of user-created "custom maps" which are .kmz files that contain individual .jpg tiles. These devices are also compatible with "Birdseye" which is Garmin's subscription based download service for satellite imagery and scanned paper maps. Basecamp is used to download Birdseye imagery, display it on the computer and send it to the GPS. Of course, Mapsource can't do any of this.
I have been using Base Camp Since June. After planning a trip to S Carolina from St Louis I went back to using MapSource.
I feel that Base Camp is much more complicated than MapSource.
I would appreciate any comments agreeing or disagreeing with this.
Mike Flannigan
Ken in Regina
Hey Mike,

I keep trying to love Basecamp but never seem to quite make it. Basecamp has some great new features. But Mapsource does all the things I need to do.

For the things I most commonly do I find Basecamp to be anywhere from mildly annoying to downright impossible. Mapsource just does everything I want to do easier and faster. And does a couple of things that are critical to me that I can't do in Basecamp at all.

Ken: The duplicate files that show up all the time were very annoying. Even when I deleted them they would show up again and others would show up. It got very tiring and I started to feel stupid.

Thanks for your comment. I'm going to use Mapsource exclusively with Streets.

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