Uniden TRAX 436 GPS unit
An affordable in-car GPS device with premium functionality
- Text-to-speech, SUNA traffic channel compatibility, Bluetooth, 3D landmarks, fast satellite signal acquisition, affordable
- Camera alerts are unnecessarily annoying, subscription to traffic service is an extra cost, Bluetooth functionality is hidden, Bluetooth quality could be improved
Uniden's top-of-the-line GPS device, the TRAX 436, offers great functionality at a reasonable price. Though some of this functionality can be improved, it is a good buy if you want a good GPS car navigation device without paying through a premium.
Price$ 449.95 (AUD)
The Uniden TRAX 436 in-car GPS navigation unit offers premium GPS functionality for a mid-range price. Although some quirks — that may take time to adapt to — were revealed in our tests, overall the GPS unit provides a good balance between price and quality.
Uniden provides a surprising amount of features on the TRAX 436 GPS car navigation. It provides the latest Australian maps, camera alerts, text-to-speech navigation, 3D landmarks, Bluetooth capability and SUNA Traffic Channel compatibility. There is a slight catch to the initial outlay: the TMC antenna required for the SUNA Traffic Channel is integrated into the TRAX 436's power adapter, but the subscription to the service itself is a $149.95 one-off fee. Nevertheless, even with the subscription's cost factored in, it is hard to find a GPS device at the Uniden TRAX 436's price point with similar functionality.
The GPS car navigation unit is bundled with a mini-USB to USB cable for connection to a PC, an in-car power adaptor and a mount for secure placement within the car. Unfortunately, Uniden doesn't provide an AC power adaptor, which thereby limits the device's use outside of a car.
Aesthetically, compared to current GPS devices like Tom Tom's GO 730 and the Navman S300T, the Uniden TRAX 436 strength is functionality not looks. With its two-tone black and dark grey fascia, the device isn't very attractive but it's a slim device, with all of its connectivity built into the sides — a power connection, mini-USB port, a microphone jack, headphone jack and an SD card slot. An external antenna can be attached through a flip-up panel in the middle of the device.
Like Kogan Technologies’ EziNav GPS, the TRAX 436 relies on Nav N Go's iGO navigation software. Unlike the EziNav GPS though, the Uniden GPS car navigation doesn't provide a root menu outside of the navigation software, and instead it simply boots straight into the iGO software. As a result, it doesn't have any multimedia or non-navigational functionality.
The software provides a fairly comprehensive navigation experience. The main interface provides a simple layout of four large buttons that provide access to the device's Find, Manage, and Route navigation functions, as well as a Settings menu. The touch screen is surprisingly responsive, making smaller buttons on the map interface itself as easy to press as the four larger buttons.
Choosing and navigating to an address on the Uniden TRAX 436 is a five step process that guides you through the selection of country, state, city and street name and number. As is common with current GPS devices, the Uniden TRAX 436's on-screen keyboard eliminates letters which do not correspond to possible addresses, until there are four or five possible addresses to display.
Though the user interface is a pleasure to use, we did find one quirk with the Bluetooth functionality — it isn't accessible through the Nav N Go's root menu. Instead, users need to enter the map and then press a small button in the bottom left corner. The Uniden TRAX 436 can pair with multiple phones and sync phonebook data, but only one phone can be connected at any one time. Unfortunately, even at maximum volume the mobile phone voice audio can easily be lost over the sound of the car or road, while the microphone isn't sensitive enough to pick up your voice while driving.
A NemeriX GPS receiver lies at the core of Uniden's TRAX 436. Cold start signal acquisition times averaged one and a half minutes beyond the 30-second system start-up period, and it managed to retain the signal even when the Uniden TRAX 436 wasn't in a direct sight line with the sky.
Though a popular trend amongst current GPS device is the addition of 3D landmarks on the Uniden TRAX 436, but in our tests we find they tend to disturb — rather than aid — the driver. Pleasingly we found Uniden has a great implementation of 3D terrain with the TRAX 436's display of elevated roads. Using 3D modelling, the TRAX 436 allows you to easily see and differentiate between overlapping roads, which is especially useful when identifying highway and freeway entrance and exit ramps. Thankfully, you can turn off 3D landmarks and roads separately.
One small annoyance is the speed camera alert sound. The alert noise emitted is a loud and almost deafening ring — it is more likely to force users to turn this function off rather than reduce their speed.
Though the Uniden TRAX 436 could use some minor improvements, overall the device is a great buy for those want premium features without paying a premium price.
Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Fetch TV Mighty review: Better than Foxtel
- 2 Fetch TV Mini review: Make your TV a smart TV
- 3 Parrot Mambo Drone review
- 4 Evapolar USB air conditioner review
- 5 Hisense Series 7 ULED 4K UHD TV review
Latest News Articles
- Early iPhone 7 reviews: You'll miss the headphone jack, but the camera and battery life are tops
- Watch out: iOS 10 install is reportedly bricking some iPhones
- Google's Pixel Launcher leak hints at the demise of the Nexus brand
- It's official: iOS 10 launches with huge improvements to iMessage, Apple Music, Siri, and more
- Goodbye GPS? DARPA preparing alternative position-tracking technology
GGG Evaluation Team
First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.
For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.
The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.
The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.
My first impression after unboxing the Q702 is that it is a nice looking unit. Styling is somewhat minimalist but very effective. The tablet part, once detached, has a nice weight, and no buttons or switches are located in awkward or intrusive positions.
- Google Pixel XL full, in-depth smartphone review: The new best Android phone
- TV buying guide: What to look for when buying a TV in 2016
- Best iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus plans: Optus vs Telstra vs Vodafone vs Virgin
- Which flagship TV is best? Sony 4K HDR Bravia 2016 versus LG 4K HDR OLED 2016
- 10 Blu-ray movies / Best looking Blu-ray movies
- CCSAP FIORIACT
- CCData Centre EngineerNSW
- CCTechnical Business Analyst - Wealth/Super backgroundNSW
- CCContract Systems Analyst (IT Security/Admin.) 161014/SA/253Asia
- FTSenior MS Dynamics CRM ConsultantSA
- CCBusiness AnalystNSW
- FTBiomedical Project ManagerSA
- FTSOE ArchitectNSW
- CCSenior Technical SpecialistVIC
- FTFront End DeveloperSA
- CCContract IT Assistant (UNIX/Windows) 161028/ITA/003Asia
- CCQlikview DeveloperNSW
- FTProgram SchedulerNSW
- CCSenior Project ManagerACT
- FTProject ManagerSA
- CCData ScientistVIC
- CCADABAS Database Administrator - NV1 clearedACT
- FTSenior Consultant Commercial PricingVIC
- CCTechnology Training ManagerNSW
- FTUX Design LeadNSW
- FTSoftware Developers | .Net 4.6 | Multiple RolesNSW
- CCProject ManagerACT
- FTOperational Integrity ManagerNSW
- CCProgress DeveloperQLD