Garmin Rino
Product Review


Garmin Rino 110Garmin Rino 120Garmin Rino 530

If you've ever been lost in the woods, than add the Garmin Rino to your wish list! I've been using the Rino 110 for over 7 years now on hunting, camping, and military expeditions. It's one of the coolest gadgets that I own. And truth be told, my parents got it for me because of my propensity for getting lost in the woods?!

The device combines all the benefits of a medium range FMS / GMRS radio and a full map-equipped GPS. From the time I started using it, I'm continually amazed by its accuracy and capability. When in the woods, I use the radio to stay in contact with family and friends. The Garmin Rino will send and receive position information from other Rino devices and record their contact location information. For example, I'll radio my Dad in the woods to see if he wants to head back to camp for lunch, and when he responds I'll see his location on the map in relation to where I am! A quick click on the menu and “Go to:”... “Contact:”... “Dad”..and the Rino directs me where to go and the closing speed and remaining distance...very cool. This is my favorite function and one that I have not found duplicated in other GPS devices.

Like all high-tech gadgets, the Rino 110 has a ton of features...I find myself using just a portion of its many features. For example, I primarily use the radio, odometer, and navigation features (screen shots below). The navigation screen can direct you to contacts with its arrow and rotating digital bezel. This has been a lot of fun to use geocaching and GPS treasure hunting, as it guides you within feet of your hidden treasure. It's also a handy feature to use in the dark when trying to find a campsite , tree stand, or some stowed gear in the woods. The accuracy of Garmin GPS units is amazing.

Garmin Rino Features:

Garmin Rino 110 – Radio ScreenshotGarmin Rino 120 – Navigation ScreenshotGarmin Rino 530 – Odometer Screenshot

One downside of the Garmin Rino 110 is the battery life. The 3 AA batteries will get you through a full day in the woods. You can save battery life by turning the GPS function off when not in use, but it will go through some batteries for a week long camping or hunting trip. The higher end Rino 530HCx has a longer battery life and rechargeable options along with more memory and robust mapping features. I keep pondering the upgrade from the 110, but it's hard to justify when it still runs like a champ after all these years.

Below is a side-by-side comparison summary table of key Garmin Rino features:

Garmin 530HCx Garmin 120 Garmin 110
Radio FRS / GMRS FRS / GMRS FRS / GMRS
Channels 22 22 22
Power 5.0 watts 1.0 watts 1.0 watts
Range up to
14 miles
up to
5 miles
up to
5 miles
Battery Lithium Ion 3 AA 3 AA
Battery Life 14 hours 15 hours 15 hours
Rechargeable? Yes No No
Location Reporting? Yes Yes Yes
Internal Memory 56 MB 8 MB 1 MB
Weight 10.3 oz 7.6 oz 7.6 oz
Waterproof? Yes Yes Yes
Interface USB Serial Serial
Base Map? Yes Yes No
Tracks log <10,000 points 2,048 points 2,048 points
Add Maps? Yes Yes No
Display 256-color Grayscale LCD Grayscale LCD
Other Features NOAA Weather
Auto Routing
Compass
Thermometer
Barometric Altimeter
Hunt/Fish Calendar
Sun & Moon Info
Area Calculation
Hunt/Fish Calendar
Sun & Moon Info
Area Calculation
Hunt/Fish Calendar
Sun & Moon Info
Area Calculation
Retail Price $499 $267 $194

In summary, I'd highly recommend this cool gadget to anyone that's looking for a reliable communication and navigation tool. It's well worth a side-pocket space in your pack whether you're on an outing with the scouts or an extended adventure in the wilderness. It's also worth noting that the Rino 530 won a Field & Stream Magazine Best of the Best Award for 2006. The Garmin product lines are about as reliable as they come..and the Rino is one of their finest. The woods are far less intimidating and much more enjoyable when you have a tool like this. Happy camping!

Leave Garmin Rino & Return to Gifts for Campers

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