"By far the worst GPS I have ever owned"1.5 starson by nmclay
Pros: Screen is bright and clear, awesome looking case, interface is clear and concise, easy to use
Cons: Very undependable maps, bizarre routing that makes NO sense, pathetic POI database, Customer Service is non-existant
Summary: In opening, I have owned 3 Garmin models, a Lowrance, and a MIO. I know what works and what doesn't and I know what to expect, in general.
When the box arrived I was impressed with the nice case that comes with it, the overall appearance of the unit, the inclusion of an AC and a DC charger, computer interface cable and the great graphics of the unit. It was easy to set up, program in my addresses, and personalize. I was so impressed I made the mistake of ordering a mount for my car from ProClipUSA for $60 BEFORE I knew what a thundering piece of crap this GPS turned out to be.
For brevity, I will bullet point the numerous problems.
- In northern IN is a major hwy running east and west. To go almost anywhere from Chicago to Fort Wayne to South Bend will include this hwy. The GPS did everything it could to get me to get off that hwy; u-turns, county roads that are gravel, etc. It wanted me off that road when it is the only way that makes any sense at all. I called Pioneer twice and e-mailed them three times trying to get an answer. Long story short, they were not interested.
- I was driving back from Columbus OH to Fort Wayne, IN and the GPS directed me to take a hwy west that I did not even know existed. It had four lanes and was practically empty so I took it. Part way down that hwy the AVIC-S1 directed me to get off that hwy onto a 2 lane rural hwy still heading west. I did. I was disturbed to see this 2 lane road running visually perpendicular to the 4 lane hwy I just got off. It ran this way for 12 MILES! The GPS then warned me that it was time to turn off this 2 lane hwy. I did as I was told. GUESS where I turned to? You got it! back on the 4 lane hwy I got off 12 MILES AGO! I was furious.
- I was in South Bend IN and needed to find a hotel for the night. I looked into the POI database. According to this piece of junk there are NO hotels in the city of South Bend. I happen to know there is a Holiday Inn select in downtown so I went back into the POI and clicked on MOTELS instead of HOTELS. There was the HI Select at $150 a night listed as a MOTEL!
- I called Pioneer again to ask about a map update. "No, it is STILL not available but it should be ANY DAY." BTW, it will cost you $150!
The straw that broke the Camel's back was a trip to Cincinnati. I drove all sorts of back roads at the direction of the AVIC-S1 to get to my customer. When I took my customer out for lunch I told him that his facility is not easy to get to. He asked me what route I took. When I told him he said "get rid of that junk on your dash. It took you MILES out of the way. All you had to do was stay on the interstate practically to our front door!"
I purchased this because I am a long time Pioneer Elite audio fan. Needless to say, this company has done a fantastic job of destroying any hope of me doing business with them again. Not only because of a bad product but due to terrible customer service and dismissive attitude.