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I am curious as to the general feeling about BMW's nav system in their current models (I have an '08 M5). I am disappointed in the system and it's general operation. I am a big fan of the car itself but this toolset is lacking in my mind. I drove an Acura for awhile (2005 MDX) and its system was significantly better. My primary difficulties lie in the lack of an intuitive interface, the difficulty in finding things by name, the general lack of data available, and the interface system. I will admit upfront that I never "talk" to the system although I don't believe that would help me find the nearest "Blockbuster" when I am in a strange town for example.
 

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Came from a Toyota and MB- both easier to use. My other car has an Pioneer AVIC-N1 and thats easy to use to. The idrive is what makes name entry more time consuming than most other touch screens.
 

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I like the idrive, but I hate the Navi. All previous cars I had, Porsche, MB, the Navi was so much better. I hope in the next generation they will change it completely.
 

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Idrive is a fantastic and simple system. It took my girlfriend two minutes to figure it out principles. I drive is no different than operating an Ipod.
 

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I also think that iDrive has some merit, but I fully agree with dnelon's opinion regarding the navigation system. BMW's implementation is a disaster in so many ways, and they could learn a lot from a $250 Garmin Nuvi. As previously stated, there is no way to search for a store or other location by spelling a name (absolutely inexcusable), the iDrive is a pain for typing out addresses, the resolution of the screen / maps is way too low for a $100K car, I could go on and on.
 

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I am happy and its better than the Escalade for what I use it for. Guess I should be pissed offf? :)
 

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I'm starting to get a hang of it but I feel like there is still room of improvements.
Acura is definitely better than BMW, I mean it even has Zagat rated built into the NAVI system.

Sorry for thread hijacking, but anyone knows how to increase to volume of the NAVI instructions?
 

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The nav sucks. Yes, IDrive is easy to use, but in general, it sucks as well. I will repeat, IDrive is easy to use. However, there are too many steps involved to get from one point to another.

Worst navigation system I have ever owned.
 

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...Guess I should be pissed offf? :)
G.Dog:

I'm not pissed. The M' is way too awesome to get mad over something like the navigation system. But one can't argue that there is room for improvement (though I agree it is better than an Escalade's system - ouich). So hopefully some constructive criticism will motivate BMW to fix this poorly implemented feature.

In the meantime, and slightly off topic, the quality of aftermarket GPS solutions is so much better than factory systems thanks to some healthy competition that it is really surprising how superior (vs. factory) these inexpensive products are. But, I don't hate the built-in system enough to bother with a second, dash mounted product. I find that Google Maps on my smartphone helps make the factory system much easier to use, since I can look up a physical address for a business or other location in a few seconds on my phone and then just enter the address using iDrive.

Speaking of iDrive, it is clear that a touchscreen is better than the iDrive controller for a navigation system. I just can't see how one could argue that point. Perhaps a system that features both would work best. But, that solution would require moving the screen closer to the driver, out of the shroud, which I personally would not prefer. It will be interesting to see how BMW addresses this issue in the future.
 

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My wife had a 2005 MDX and now has a 2008 MDX and the Acura Navi is leaps and bounds better than BMW's. It has a much better user interface. I do disagree with Minium's preference for the touch screen. The first MDX had a touch screen and the new one has an iDrive like controller. The touch screen was a pain in the *** to use accurately -- especially when the car is in motion. And the constant fingerprints an smudges on the screen drove me nuts.
 

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This is the first nav system I enjoy using......it does take some getting used to at first, but it gets easier and easier to use once you've screwed with it for a while......

ONE THING I truly like......and bear in mind this is just a comparison to my ex-Touareg, Audi, Porsche and my wife's current Toyota system.......is how when I decide not to take the projected route to somewhere because I know there is a more efficient way, the system INSTANTANEOUSLY recalculates the route when I miss the turn or exit........and I mean instantaneously.......no muss no fuss.......and I don't get that annoying voice telling me, "ROUTE IS BEING CALCULATED".......

Just my 2cents
 

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. . .there is no way to search for a store or other location by spelling a name (absolutely inexcusable), the iDrive is a pain for typing out addresses, the resolution of the screen / maps is way too low for a $100K car, I could go on and on.
It's called Points of Interest. It shows you what nearby when you select the category and how far away it is.

I'll give you the low resolution though, it could look nicer but whatever it works.. most of the time. Besides that I like the system better than every other car i've owned.

+10 for the iDrive and a special trophy :goldcup: to all the magazine editors who are so retarded that they have to explain their own personal difficulty in their articles.

If the iDrive sucks so bad I guess MB wants to be just as sucky with their identical (wait I think the shape is different if that counts) iDrive system!
 

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At least now I know that it isn't just me. The iDrive isn't the main problem it is the lack of usability for the Nav system itself. Like Minium I often find myself using the iPhone to get an address for a business. Not ideal to say the least!
 

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It's called Points of Interest. It shows you what nearby when you select the category and how far away it is.
avlnch:

I am, of course, familar with Points of Interest. The point I was making is that you can not search for a specific Point of Interest by name. On my $400 Garmin (in another vehicle), I can type, for example, "BEST" to find all the Best Buy stores close to where I am. You can't do that with the current BMW system (strangely, I could with the Nav system in my prior '04 745Li). Or, the other day I was going to a wedding with my wife and I needed to find a specific church. Since I could not enter the church name, I had to scroll through all the churches listed in Points of Interest just to discover that the church I needed wasn't included. Not good. I think the lack of a search by name feature is a glaring omission.

Andrew:

You are one of the forum members I hesitate to argue with out of respect for your many, many contributions. I am not familiar with the Acura non-touchscreen based system, though I am not surprised it works well. It seems that the Japanese manufacturers do a nice job with their navigation systems. However, my positive experience with a touchscreen is based on my aftermarket device. I am willing to bet that you could type a name or address quicker on the touchscreen than you could by turning a controller to select letters. And, I hate fingerprints also, but my Garmin unit somehow doesn't show them. Perhaps you should cut back on the chicken wings. ;)
 

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avlnch:

I am, of course, familar with Points of Interest. The point I was making is that you can not search for a specific Point of Interest by name. On my $400 Garmin (in another vehicle), I can type, for example, "BEST" to find all the Best Buy stores close to where I am. You can't do that with the current BMW system (strangely, I could with Nav system in my prior '04 745Li). Or, the other day I was going to a wedding with my wife and I needed to find a specific church. Since I could not enter the church name, I had to scroll through all the churches listed in Points of Interest just to discover that the church I needed wasn't included. Not good. I think the lack of a search by name feature is a glaring omission.
This is available with the nav-version that was introduced in march 2007, I think it´s version 25.
 

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This is available with the nav-version that was introduced in march 2007, I think it´s version 25.
Can you help us find it. I have current software and have not been able to access that feature. It is the biggest of several failings of the BMW nav.
 

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avlnch:

I am, of course, familar with Points of Interest. The point I was making is that you can not search for a specific Point of Interest by name. On my $400 Garmin (in another vehicle), I can type, for example, "BEST" to find all the Best Buy stores close to where I am. You can't do that with the current BMW system (strangely, I could with the Nav system in my prior '04 745Li). Or, the other day I was going to a wedding with my wife and I needed to find a specific church. Since I could not enter the church name, I had to scroll through all the churches listed in Points of Interest just to discover that the church I needed wasn't included. Not good. I think the lack of a search by name feature is a glaring omission.

Andrew:

You are one of the forum members I hesitate to argue with out of respect for your many, many contributions. I am not familiar with the Acura non-touchscreen based system, though I am not surprised it works well. It seems that the Japanese manufacturers do a nice job with their navigation systems. However, my positive experience with a touchscreen is based on my aftermarket device. I am willing to bet that you could type a name or address quicker on the touchscreen than you could by turning a controller to select letters. And, I hate fingerprints also, but my Garmin unit somehow doesn't show them. Perhaps you should cut back on the chicken wings. ;)
Don't mess with my wing quota man!grrrrrrr

I will give you that while standing still the touch screen is probably faster. However, when the car is moving (either as driver or passenger) it is very easy to hit the wrong letter with a small bump and I rarely was able to make an entry without at least one error. It may be due to the placement as the screen was a bit of a reach -- or perhaps my bucket-o-wings was getting in the way. :haha: Overall, I prefer the new controller based input -- but that is simply a matter of preference.

Fingerprints weren't that noticable if the screen was on. But if you don't hit the accept button, the screen would be dark and the prints were very noticable.

The interface and the graphics on the 2008 MDX system are very very good.

And thanks for the compliment -- even if it is undeserved.
 

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Idrive is a fantastic and simple system. It took my girlfriend two minutes to figure it out principles. I drive is no different than operating an Ipod.
I agree....:cheers:
 
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