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Garmin nüvi® 56

Portable navigator with 5" screen

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  • Garmin nüvi® 56

    Lane guidance in action.

  • Garmin nüvi® 56

    Be informed of your next maneuver.

  • Garmin nüvi® 56

    Garmin's advanced search screen lets you find destinations quickly.

  • Garmin nüvi® 56

    Lane guidance in action.

  • Garmin nüvi® 56

    Lane guidance in action.

  • Garmin nüvi® 56

  • Garmin nüvi® 56

  • Garmin nüvi® 56

    The mount keeps the nuvi firmly secured to your windshield, with maximum freedom to make adjustments.

  • Garmin nüvi® 56

    The Up Ahead display (at right) lets you know what's nearby.

  • Garmin nüvi® 56

    You can personalize the search options on the nuvi's menu screen.

 

Our take on the Garmin nüvi® 56

by Dominic Devito
Garmin

Who needs a portable navigator?

Portable GPS puts you in touch with the world when you're on the road. Tap the restaurant icon, and it asks you what kind of food you're looking for. Type in "Mexican," and you're eating a burrito before you know it. A portable navigator not only gets you to your destination, it can also find museums, theaters, and other spots along the way. Many navigators receive traffic reports, so you can avoid jams. Other cool features range from hands-free calling to 3D graphics and lane guidance. Best of all, you can move a portable easily from car to car, a big plus for multi-car families.

Take to the streets anywhere in the U.S. and Canada

Garmin's nüvi 56 portable navigator — part of their Essential Series — gives you the flexibility to extend your road trips to nearly any point within the U.S. and Canada, with maps of all 50 states, our neighbors to the north, and some of the larger Caribbean islands. You'll also enjoy a sweet 5" color touchscreen display that works in horizontal and vertical orientations for convenient access to detailed maps. Millions of preloaded points of interest help you quickly locate stops along the way.

A road-ready 5" warrior

The nüvi 56's 5" screen lets you take in every detail clearly from the driver's seat. And you can manually adjust the screen orientation by 90 degrees, if you prefer a lengthwise view that's more in line with your smartphone display. The nüvi's slim profile ensures it won't take up too much real estate, and the advanced rear mount will keep it firmly in place on your windshield.

Accurate navigation

This Garmin announces actual street names at turns, so you'll hear "turn right on Gladstone Avenue" instead of "take the next right." Colored arrows pop up as you approach complicated interchanges and junctions, showing you the the proper lane for the next maneuver. To keep you oriented, you'll always have a text reminder of which street you're on.

Garmin's improved search function finds the right destination through addresses and points of interest quickly and accurately. Speed limit displays with visual warnings on major roads help keep you in check, and you'll even be notified of school zones with audible and visual cues. And with one tap of the screen, Garmin's Up Ahead display will pull up details for services that lie ahead, including restaurants, gas stations, and more — all without leaving the map screen.

Garmin nuvi 56 portable navigator

You'll always be aware of upcoming services with the Up Ahead display, located on the right of the screen.

Read more

Added benefits

The "Where Am I?" emergency locator provides your exact location instantly, displaying nearby emergency services if you need aid. Garmin's trip computer lets you plan trips and record mileage, maximum speed, total time, and more. The Garmin Express software suite found at Garmin's website allows you to update maps and software, transfer favorites to and from devices, and customize your vehicle icon and spoken voices. The nüvi 56 also lets you assign custom points of interest so you can find favorite stops that are a little off the beaten path.

Highlights:

  • portable GPS navigator
  • suction-cup windshield mount
  • car power adapter, micro-USB cable, and built-in rechargeable battery with up to 2 hours of life
Navigation features:
  • 5" (480 x 272 pixels) dual-orientation display with touchscreen control
  • 10 million points of interest (allows custom points of interest)
  • preloaded with maps for the United States, Canada, and Puerto Rico, plus U.S. Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Jamaica, and Bahamas
  • text-to-speech voice prompts announce actual road names at turns
  • Up Ahead feature informs of nearby services
  • lane assistance and junction view
  • current street display
  • speed limit and school zone indicators
  • trip computer
  • multi-destination routing: allows 1,000 waypoints
  • transport modes: auto
Expandability:
  • microSD™ card slot
Other features and specs:

Hands-on research from the Crutchfield Labs (what are the Labs?)

Features and Specs
Features
Maps Updates optional
Map Coverage US (50), CA, USVI, PR, Jamaica
Points of Interest 10,000,000
Multiple Destination Routing Yes
Screen Size 5"
Widescreen Yes
Bluetooth Capable No
Photo Viewer No
Digital Audio Playback No
Text To Speech Yes
Voice Control No
Dynamic Content Services None
Removable Memory Type microSD card
Battery Life 2 hours
Warranty
Parts Warranty 1 Year
Labor Warranty 1 Year
Product Research
What's in the box?

Download owner's manual

  • Portable GPS navigation device (w/ 5.0" LCD)
  • Suction-cup mount
  • Universal bracket mount
  • Cigarette lighter/power adapter (w/ attached 68" cable)
  • Quick Start Guide
  • Important Safety/Product Information

Our Product Research Team

At Crutchfield, you'll get detailed, accurate information that's hard to find elsewhere. That's because we have our own in-house Product Research team — they open the box, verify contents, check the owner's manual, and record dimensions, features and specs. We stay on top of new products and technologies to help people make informed choices.

General Features
Navigation Features

General Features

Overview: The Garmin nüvi 56, part of the Essential Series, is a portable GPS navigation device that provides automatic routing and turn-by-turn voice directions. The unit receives data from overhead global positioning satellites, not cellular signals, for reliable navigation directions.

5" Touchscreen LCD: The nüvi 56 features a 5", dual-orientation, color TFT touchscreen LCD with a resolution of 480 x 272 pixels. The screen can be viewed in either landscape or portrait orientation, and can be switched in the Settings Menu.

Preloaded Maps: The nüvi 56 contains NAVTEQ's City Navigator North America NT 2014 US & Canada maps with detailed road maps of the United States (including Alaska and Hawaii), Canada, Puerto Rico, U.S. Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, The Bahamas, French Guiana, Guadeloupe, Martinique, Saint Barthélemy, and Jamaica. The maps include more than 10-million points of interest (POIs) to help you find the destination you desire.

Note: Maps of Mexico are not included. Optional maps are available for this device via microSD card, download, or DVD directly from Garmin.com.

nüMaps Guarantee: If you register your device on Garmin's website within 90 days of acquiring satellites while driving, you can check to see if a free map update is available. You must be able to connect your device via a high-speed internet connection in order to check the loaded map version and download the map update.

Garmin Express: You can connect the unit to your computer with a mini-B USB cable (not included) for downloading map updates, custom POIs, voices, and vehicles. You will need to download the Garmin Express software to update your maps and register the unit. Garmin Express requires Windows Vista or newer or Mac OS X 10.7 or higher, running in 64-bit.

microSD Card Slot: The nüvi 56 has a microSD card slot so you can store and use optional maps (available from Garmin), or download custom voices and vehicles from the Garmin Garage.

Universal Mount: The nüvi 56 features a new universal mount that holds the unit securely in place, but can be easily removed. The circular Universal Bracket mount clips into the socket on the back of the unit, and fits the ball mount found on Garmin windshield and dash mounts.

Power Requirements: The Garmin nüvi 56 is powered by a built-in Lithium-Ion battery, which will provide up to 2 hours of use when fully charged. The unit comes with a 12-volt cigarette lighter power adapter for powering and charging the unit while you travel. An optional AC adapter allows you to operate the unit on ordinary household current. The unit can be powered by your computer when it is connected via a mini-B USB cable.

Navigation Features

Points of Interest: The built-in maps include over 10-million Points of Interest (POIs) such as hotels, restaurants, gas stations, attractions, and ATMs. In addition, you can download additional points of interest and add them to the unit's memory (Custom POIs). The free POI Loader software can be downloaded from the Garmin website to assist you in creating Custom POIs.

Map View Options: You can choose from a 3D map view or two 2D map views (Track Up or North Up) as you navigate to your destination.

Speed Limits: As you travel along a major road or street, the speed limit is displayed on the screen alongside of the vehicle's speed display. If you are exceeding the speed limit, the color of the vehicle speed indication changes to red. If the highway's posted speed limit has changed since the last map update, you can change the speed limit display on the unit.

Where Am I?: The "Where Am I?" feature gives you instant access to important information in case of an emergency. When you touch the vehicle icon on the map screen, the "Where Am I?" feature provides the coordinates (including elevation) of your current position, plus the nearest address and intersections. There are also buttons to help you locate the nearest hospitals, police stations, gas stations, and roadside assistance. You can also save the location for future reference.

Up Ahead: As you travel along your route, the Up Ahead feature constantly indicates the location of nearby businesses, including gas, food, lodging, restrooms, parking, and banks and ATMs. The locations are shown as icons, some with brand logos, and when the icons are touched on the screen, details of the services are displayed, and you are given the opportunity to navigate to that address.

Garmin Locate: To assist you in finding your parked vehicle, the Garmin Locate feature saves your location to memory when you remove the device from the windshield mounting cradle while the device is on. You can search for your vehicle's location using the Last Spot button in the menu.

Destination Search: When the Where To? button is pressed, you can use the search tools to find your destination and plan your route. The search tools allow you to search for cities, addresses, intersections, or coordinates. The new Search Bar lets you directly enter a category, brand name, address, or city name. The unit's memory stores the last 50 locations you have found so you can quickly find a previous destination.

Garmin Garage: The unit offers your choice of eight standard icons to represent your vehicle. The online Garmin Garage offers dozens more vehicle icons that you can download for free. In addition, you can purchase icon and voice bundles with Star Wars (Yoda, Darth Vader), Sesame Street (Oscar, Cookie Monster, Ernie & Bert), and The Simpsons (Homer and Marge) themes, among others.

Trip Planner: You can create and save a trip with multiple destinations using the Trip Planner. Once you have entered your destinations, you can manually set them in the order of your preference, or allow the device to calculate the most efficient route. Trip itineraries can be saved in memory for future use.

Trip Computer: The trip information page displays your current speed and direction, and provides helpful statistics about your trip. Dual trip odometers keep up with your total mileage. The page also indicates the distance and driving time to your next maneuver, as well as the distance and driving time to your destination. Your maximum speed and moving average speed are also displayed. The information can be reset in advance of your next trip.

Where I've Been/Trip Log: The Where I've Been application allows you to view your previous routes and places you have stopped on the map. In addition, the device keeps a Trip Log, which is a record of the path you have traveled. The Travel History setting must be enabled in order for the Where I've Been and Trip Log features to function.

myTrends: The myTrends feature takes into account your personal driving habits and anticipates your route when calculating your ETA to your frequent destinations. This feature does not work out of the box at first, but is most effective after 2-3 weeks of regular usage.

GPS Simulator: When indoors, you can activate the built-in GPS simulator and practice using the unit. This turns off the GPS receiver so it's not searching for satellites, saving battery power.

ecoRoute: The optional ecoRoute feature calculates the fuel economy and the fuel price of navigating to a destination, and offers tools for improving fuel efficiency. The ecoRoute application can be purchased from the Garmin Online Store.

 
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Add accessories for the Garmin nüvi® 56

Garmin Air Vent Mount Mount your nüvi® portable navigator on your air vent
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MAXSA 12-volt Power Adapter Three-outlet adapter with on/off switch (Model 20093)
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For a more in-depth review and enhanced detailed information on the Garmin nüvi® 56, please visit the Crutchfield website product page (/ISEO-rccbcspd/p_15056/Garmin-n-vi-56.html ).

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