Page 2 of 2

Re: Garmin 296 latest map updates.

PostPosted:Tue Jun 08, 2021 8:55 pm
by Pete O Static
I recently acquired a GPSMap 296 from a friend of mine and wanted to update the Nav Database. My search on how to do this brought me here. I wanted to say thank you as this thread helped me immensely and provide an update on the process as of 2021 in case someone else has one of these treasures and would like to update it.

Full disclosure, I am not a real fan of anything Garmin, however the GPSMap 296/396/496 seem to be the most stable, reliable and simple aviation portable. My primary flight Display is my windshield and I am not a fan of all of these high tech gizmos that seem to keep eyes inside the cockpit and pilots preoccupied, all under the premise of improving safety. This is why I believe it is worthwhile updating these older legacy models.

I recently updated the Jeppesen Nav Database of the 296 from the Garmin website. In true Garmin fashion, it is not intuitive. Patience is a virtue. It is there. Once you have found the database update, add it to the cart and checkout. You can also purchase an update for Obstacles and another for Terrain, in the event some mountains have moved since the last update.

Garmin tries to get you to use their Fly Garmin App to update the 296. Don't bother, it doesn't work. Nor does Garmin Express or Garmin Maploader or any other Garmin map updating derivative they offer. On the update page, you must look for and select their "legacy" option with a "Windows PC only". It doesn't really stand out but once again, patience. It is there. What it does not tell you however is that your Windows PC must be of the "Boat Anchor" variety with USB ports of version 2.0 or older. If your PC has USB 3.0 then you will need an adapter. The Garmin Update will not not work with anything faster than 2.0 and will generate an auto error message as soon as you try to push the update. You may also need to download Garmin Drivers.

So, assuming you have an appropriately older model PC, download the file and remember where it has been stored. I am a big supporter of the K.I.S.S. philosophy, so I just chose to save it to my desktop. Once you open it, your PC will likely activate sirens and call the local constabulary unless you tell it that Garmin didn't sell you a virus.

Once all the sirens have stopped and the Cat comes down off the ceiling, the update is straightforward and prompts are provided for the unlock code ( comes via email after purchase ) the Unit ID is generally self populated but if not, that can be obtained from the "Main Menu- Setup- System Information" page. It will then ask you to put the GPS into simulation mode and voila. Once done, turn the GPS off then back on and check for the new database date before pressing the agree prompt.

I hope this helps someone as much as this thread helped me.

Cheers.

Re: Garmin 296 latest map updates.

PostPosted:Wed Jun 09, 2021 12:54 am
by PeteSpencer
Very useful:
But I got stuck at the update saved on desktop stage:

After all the microsoft warnings:Nada, no prompts, no passcode by email, nada and £45 wasted ,

Oh and its a USB 2

Any ideas?

Re: Garmin 296 latest map updates.

PostPosted:Wed Jun 09, 2021 11:05 am
by MikeE
I had the same problem last year updating the map on our 296. I phoned Garmin UK customer support who were brilliant. I was transferred to someone who specialised in portable units who spent a long time on the phone trying different methods of downloading the map. None of them worked, so he suggested using a pc with Windows 7 (the map data doesn't like Windows 10 apparently) and USB 2 rather than 3 (as suggested above).

He gave me his details and said if none of that worked then send the unit to him and he would do it for me. This I did and the unit came back with the updated map within a couple of days.

I have tried to find his details to pass on but without success (all I remember is his name was Henry). I would suggest you ring Garmin support as they really were very helpful.

Good luck

Mike

Re: Garmin 296 latest map updates.

PostPosted:Wed Jun 09, 2021 11:11 am
by PeteSpencer
Thanks @MikeE

I might end up doing that.

Were Garmin customer support in UK/Did you send unit to a UK address?

My 296 software (6.something even though2013 is up to date) I'd just like a one off map update especially as I've just paid £45 for it!!

Peter

Re: Garmin 296 latest map updates.

PostPosted:Wed Jun 09, 2021 11:37 am
by zarpilot
To my shame I never replied back here that I managed to got my unit updated. Procedures were pretty much as Pete O Static described. It's an old unit so old PC hardware (USB 2.0 is what the Garmin support told me too) is the way to go. Firewalls blocking software downloads etc. isn't a fault with the unit/Garmin.

Once I was able to communicate with the unit via USB (old hub I had lying around) the update itself was simple.

I've sold it in the meantime as the share I bought into has a 496 in the panel. (which also needs an update. ) The only drawback I find with these old units is that the radio frequencies are not updated to 8.33. So you cannot look up frequencies on them like you used to. So - for me - that relegates them to pure navigational backup. But even then if you need it to look up a freq. for a unplanned divert,...

Re: Garmin 296 latest map updates.

PostPosted:Wed Jun 09, 2021 12:09 pm
by Paul_Sengupta
Pete O Static wrote:I am not a fan of all of these high tech gizmos that seem to keep eyes inside the cockpit and pilots preoccupied


If you've never tried tablet navigation, I would urge you to give it a go, you'll probably find it's a revelation. It's *much* easier to read than a Garmin GPS, requiring *far* less time with eyes inside.

Re: Garmin 296 latest map updates.

PostPosted:Wed Jun 09, 2021 12:58 pm
by Pete L
I don't think anything surpassed the 296 as a means of getting very few buttons to control the device so well - old-school Nokia quality of user interface.

Re: Garmin 296 latest map updates.

PostPosted:Wed Jun 09, 2021 1:31 pm
by MikeE
PeteSpencer wrote:Thanks @MikeE

I might end up doing that.

Were Garmin customer support in UK/Did you send unit to a UK address?

My 296 software (6.something even though2013 is up to date) I'd just like a one off map update especially as I've just paid £45 for it!!

Peter


@PeteSpencer Yes, they were in the UK and the address I sent it to was, IIRC in Southampton.

Ah! Found it. The address I sent it to was -

Aviation Support, Garmin Europe, Liberty House, Hounsdown Business Park, Southampton SO40 9LR

And the email address of helpful Henry is henry <hyphen> hudson <at> garmin <dot> com

I suggest you email him directly and if no reply is forthcoming then contact through Garmin UK support

Hope that helps

Best wishes

Mike

Re: Garmin 296 latest map updates.

PostPosted:Wed Jun 09, 2021 6:48 pm
by The Kissimmee Bum
Loved my 296. Especially the thumb button interface. So easy to use in flight.