Our review of the Garmin Nuvi 680 finds it to be a highly capable, but quite costly, GPS device. Still, it's worth a look.

In addition to the features you'd expect from a GPS device - clear onscreen and voiced navigation directions (including the mostly accurate pronunciation of street names), high-quality 3D maps, and a points-of-interest database - the Garmin Nuvi 680 offers a basic media player for viewing image and video files and for playing audio, including books downloaded from Audible.com.

The Garmin Nuvi 680's Travel Kit also contains a language guide that pronounces words and phrases in French, German, Italian, Portuguese, and Spanish, translated to and from English (you can download other languages and guides for an additional fee).

You also get one free year of the MSN Direct service, which provides traffic and weather information, petrol prices, and movie times via a receiver built into the Garmin Nuvi 680's 12V power adaptor. After the first year you have to pay for this, however. The traffic information is available in limited areas, and even in those regions you may not be covered.

The initial download can take several hours, according to both Garmin and MSN, but we began receiving reports on traffic conditions along our route after only about an hour. When you encounter traffic the Garmin Nuvi 680 offers to route you around it, but we wouldn't have saved much time with the alternates it suggested. Still, this feature could come in handy.

Another nice extra is the Garmin Nuvi 680's Garmin Lock security feature, which lets you designate a four-digit PIN as well as a security location (such as your home). You must either enter the code or be at the security location to unlock the device.

On several occasions the Garmin Nuvi 680 delivered directions too late for us to follow them.

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Verdict


It's neither cheap now without flaws, but the Garmin Nuvi 680 is worth a look for those seeking a full-featured GPS satnav device and media player.

Our review of the Garmin Nuvi 680 finds it to be a highly capable, but quite costly, GPS device. Still, it's worth a look.

Feature list

  • Battery: rechargeable lithium-ion
  • Claimed battery life: up to 7 hour
  • Waterproofing: no
  • High-sensitivity receiver: yes
  • RoHS version available: yes
  • Basemap: yes
  • Preloaded maps: yes
  • Ability to add maps: yes
  • Built-in memory: internal solid state
  • Accepts data cards: SD card (not included)
  • Waypoints: 500
  • Routes: 0
  • Voice prompts (e.g. "Turn right in 500ft"): yes (internal speaker)
  • Speaks street names (e.g. "Turn right ON GRAY'S INN ROAD in 500ft"): yes
  • 3D map view: yes
  • Auto sort multiple destinations (provides most direct route): no
  • Auto re-route (fast off-route and detour recalculation): yes
  • Choice of route setup (faster time, shorter distance, off road): yes
  • Route avoidance (avoid highways, tolls etc): yes
  • Custom POIs (ability to add additional points of interest): yes
  • Hands-free calling with Bluetooth wireless technology: yes
  • FM traffic compatible: yes
  • MP3 player: yes
  • Audio book player: yes
  • Picture viewer: yes
  • Configurable vehicle icons (select car-shaped icons for map navigation): yes
  • World travel clock, currency & measurement converter, calculator: yes
  • Touchscreen: yes
  • Remote control: no
  • FM transmitter: yes
  • Headphone jack/audio line-out: yes
  • Dead reckoning: no
  • Garmin Lock (anti-theft feature): yes
  • Motorcycle-friendly: no

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Garmin Nuvi 680: Specs

  • 124x74x23mm
  • 190g
  • internal antenna
  • 4.3im, 480x272 pixels
  • WQVGA TFT landscape display, with white backlight and touchscreen
  • SD
  • 124x74x23mm
  • 190g
  • internal antenna
  • 4.3im, 480x272 pixels
  • WQVGA TFT landscape display, with white backlight and touchscreen
  • SD

OUR VERDICT

It's neither cheap now without flaws, but the Garmin Nuvi 680 is worth a look for those seeking a full-featured GPS satnav device and media player.

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