If you are looking for the best or most advanced GPS device on the market, a Magellan device probably won’t come into mind. Yet the company continues to thrive even in a smartphone dominated landscape all because Magellan’s best products are actually pretty affordable. If you look at the current lineup at Magellan’s website, you will see that none of their RoadMate products for cars go past the $230 barrier. In fact, you have 4 different products to pick from if you have exactly $230 to spare. The Magellan RoadMate 9465T-LMB is the largest of the 4 and it is stacked with nice features.
The RoadMate 9465T-LMB has the same hardware and design specifications as the cheaper RoadMate 9400-LM model. The 7-inch display pushes this particular GPS device to tablet territory. The 480 x 800 resolution might seem bad in terms of pixel density but this device will only be used for navigation and the maps simply look great and vibrant on this display. Direct sunlight doesn’t affect the visibility and the contrast is adequate during night time viewing since the special Night View triggers automatically.
One of the main incentives of stepping up to this high-end Magellan 7-inch GPS device is built-in Bluetooth and it functions exactly the way you would expect. You just pair the Magellan RoadMate 9465T-LMB with virtually any smartphone or mobile handset with built-in Bluetooth and the GPS device instantly becomes a hands-free speaker phone.
With the same internal hardware as other Magellan 7-inch models, you can expect the same performance and same bland interface. It is still highly usable for beginners though since it purely relies on icons that respond to simple touches. The 3D map view is pretty self-explanatory although there is one particular element that continues to be favorite among Magellan owners and that is the OneTouch Favorites Menu. You just access it from the upper right corner and you’ll find a list of places you are most likely to visit. Of course, customizing this menu by adding your preferred POIs is what really makes this menu so useful. Planning a route is quite simple too because the onscreen keyword is powered by QuickSpell which highlights letters as you type to help you spell a destination you are most likely going to head to. SmartCity Search also brings up a list of suggested cities to help minimize your typing.
Owning a RoadMate 9465T-LMB entitles you to free lifetime map updates so you should be able to update to the most recent map database right after purchase. More than 7 million points of interest are already included so you can expect an even higher count once the update completes. Magellan will roll out 4 map updates every year to ensure all the POIs across the US, Canada and Puerto Rico areas are updated.
Having this huge database in the Magellan RoadMate 9465T-LMB is great if you want to plan multiple stops using multi-destination routing. It should do a fairly decent job in coming up with a good route but if you need to reach your destination as soon as possible, you can have the RoadMate 9465T-LMB take distance or time into account, or come up with a route that doesn’t involve freeways. Built-in lifetime traffic alerts is another nice feature that the RoadMate 9400-LM lacks so you may get detour suggestions if traffic jams are detected. No matter which route you pick, traffic will be taken into account when estimating the travel time.
Driving with the Magellan RoadMate 9465T-LMB is a pleasant navigation experience as it not only speaks out street names but also uses landmarks as reference points, if present, so you can easily find out when to make that turn. Of course, it is rare to find landmarks on the freeway but you still have the classic Junction View to assist you which renders important freeway signs in a realistic fashion and points you to the right lane which will then lead you to the correct exit. Once you reach that exit, you can use the Highway Exit POIs feature to locate rest spots and gas stations in the area.
In addition to free lifetime traffic information, you also get a free year of PhantomALERT service which provides alerts for speed cameras. This works well with the other standard feature that shows speed limit information. Because the locations of speed cameras are provided by other users, you can add to the database as well if you see a speed camera that wasn’t detected by the RoadMate 9465T-LMB.
Because of the large screen, the Magellan RoadMate 9465T-LMB is helpful for cars and trucks but it doesn’t have any of the truck and RV-focused software improvements so you should check out the Magellan RoadMate RV models first. But for automobiles without built-in Bluetooth, spending $229.99 on the RoadMate 9465T-LMB is a smart idea especially if you find a 5-inch GPS device to be too small.