Mathews Inc.
onXmap or GAIA
Equipment
Contributors to this thread:
jdee 12-Mar-18
Muddyboots 12-Mar-18
Overland 12-Mar-18
Jaquomo 12-Mar-18
WV Mountaineer 12-Mar-18
Jaquomo 12-Mar-18
yooper89 12-Mar-18
onX Hunt 12-Mar-18
Kurt 12-Mar-18
HDE 12-Mar-18
Deertick 12-Mar-18
Charlie Rehor 12-Mar-18
LUNG$HOT 12-Mar-18
IdyllwildArcher 12-Mar-18
standswittaknife 12-Mar-18
Jaquomo 12-Mar-18
onX Hunt 12-Mar-18
Ambush 12-Mar-18
Jaquomo 12-Mar-18
onX Hunt 12-Mar-18
Jaquomo 12-Mar-18
Deertick 12-Mar-18
WapitiBob 12-Mar-18
jdee 12-Mar-18
Jaquomo 12-Mar-18
WV Mountaineer 12-Mar-18
md5252 12-Mar-18
Brijake 13-Mar-18
WapitiBob 13-Mar-18
Dino 13-Mar-18
elkstabber 13-Mar-18
onX Hunt 13-Mar-18
Bowfreak 13-Mar-18
HDE 13-Mar-18
WapitiBob 13-Mar-18
Bowfreak 13-Mar-18
Peter Denzin 13-Mar-18
Michael 13-Mar-18
Dotman 14-Mar-18
WapitiBob 14-Mar-18
Mr_steve 14-Mar-18
Kurt 14-Mar-18
HDE 14-Mar-18
WapitiBob 14-Mar-18
onX Hunt 14-Mar-18
onX Hunt 14-Mar-18
planebow 14-Mar-18
elkmtngear 14-Mar-18
Scar Finga 14-Mar-18
onX Hunt 15-Mar-18
WapitiBob 15-Mar-18
From: jdee
12-Mar-18
I lost my gps Oregon 450 T it had an onXmap chip in it for New Mexico. I am going to buy a new gps and NM chip but was thinking about GAIA on my iPhone . I hunted in NM last year with a guy who was using GAIA on his phone and he was doing ok but I really didn’t ask much about it or pay much attention to his setup. I have been hearing good things about GAIA . I have the iPhone and a iPad. What would be better , a new gps and chip or buy the GAIA app ? Is one better than the other ? ....... I will probably buy one or the other then find my old 450T.

From: Muddyboots
12-Mar-18
I've never had the onXmap chip. I've have a few GPS's with topo chips. About 8 months ago I added GAIA to my android phone, and now it is what I use 90% of the time. Reason is the screen is so nice, large and clear, and I usually have my phone with me anyway. The negative for GAIA as I see it is loading the background topo requires you be in cell phone range, or preload (which I don't know how to do). I don't worry to much about private property boundarys where I go, which would favor onX maps. For $20, one time only, I would keep the GAIA regardless of whether I ever bought a better GPS and added onXMap, since it is so handy and clear. I'll keep my gps as is for backcountry trips where loading the background topo would be a problem. Lastly, I haven't played with GAIA that much- not sure you can do much with waypoints.

From: Overland
12-Mar-18
Gaia Premium

From: Jaquomo
12-Mar-18
I use GAIA way more than my GPS with chip. I pre-download aerial maps with topo overlay (or just USSGS Topo and satellite view separately to minimize clutter) and use them to navigate whenever I don't have cell service. I can toggle back and forth from satellite to topo. Waypoints and tracks are simple to manage. When you synch your device to the cloud it saves your waypoints and tracks. Or if you place them ahead of time on your home computer, it synchs them to your handheld. GAIA Pro offers a whole bunch more layers, including land status (BLM, USFS, etc..) and private property boundaries. I use a small tablet to get the bigger screen, and can zoom in on aerial maps, which is great when I'm adventuring in unknown territory.

The one real value in a GPS chip is the actual names of landowners if you need that. I use the DIY Hunting chip since I've never found major errors with it like I did with OnX.

12-Mar-18
I use GAIA. My business partner uses onX for work. I favorably prefer GAIA. As stated above, you can’t download maps off grid though. So, I plan accordingly. I don’t pay the property boundary much attention though as all they are is truly tax maps put to scale. In most areas I work, that’s good enough. But, in all cases that is not true.

With all that, for hunting, i prefer a gps with chip. A phone is fragile and subject to outside variables. More so then any gps. A phone is fine on airplane mode at conserving batteries until you use it to navigate with gps continually running. That forces you to carry a way to charge it versus two AA batteries. External battery sources are heavy and also prone to the elements. If my gps gets weak, 30 seconds to change 2 ounces of batteries and I’m good for another 4 days of continuous navigation. That’s why I hunt with a gps and chip versus my phone. Just something to think about. Good luck and God Bless.

From: Jaquomo
12-Mar-18
WV pointed out many reasons why I also use a GPS with chip. I can recharge my tablet with a small generator at base camp. But with two lithium AA batteries I can run my GPS the whole hunt with no worries.

From: yooper89
12-Mar-18
Jaq - what kind of errors did you find with OnX chip? I've had mine for a couple years. Never ran into any issues but have seen people complain about it in the past. Have been thinking about spending the $30 on a year subscription for the phone app since it seems like it's pretty straight forward and easy to navigate. Haven't pulled the trigger on anything yet though.

From: onX Hunt
12-Mar-18
Jaquomo - I would be happy to look into any errors and answer any questions regarding the onX system.

jdee - If you do decide to go the GPS route again, feel free to contact us and if you registered your Hunt chip, we can work with you on getting another one. A bonus of our system as well is you can update a Hunt Chip and have access on the phone, tablet, and computer with the Premium membership. There is a ton of data incorporated into our system such as wildfires, timber cuts, roadless areas, and much more that you won't find anywhere else.

From: Kurt
12-Mar-18
I use a the original cheap $20 GAIA app. It has worked on all our phones and iPad just fine. Saving a map/aerial photo is so simple, just do it at home on WIFI for faster downloading versus over cellular data. If you forget, you can still use the phone as a basic GPS, just without hi-resolution background photos or maps. Good luck with it!

From: HDE
12-Mar-18
onXHunt worked great while off range oryx hunting this past weekend.

From: Deertick
12-Mar-18
Another vote for Gaia here ... I use it as my primary navigator after trying it out last fall. Very user friendly and better for me than the GPS/Chip combination for a number of reasons. The charging issue is the primary draw-back. You will need to make sure you have a way to work with that -- but other than that, it's much better.

12-Mar-18
I like the Onx $29 dollar individual State option for my iPhone. Easily toggles back next forth with my laptop, preload areas in case of no service but most important for me is the land owners. If needed I carry a phone charger with me that gives me 8 full charges.

From: LUNG$HOT
12-Mar-18
I’ve been using GAIA the last 2 years and it’s great for what I do! I usually don’t hunt near property boundaries and know my GoTo unit in Colorado well so it’s just used as a basic waypoint device for me. I’m sure OnX has some advantages but I just don’t need all the extra.

12-Mar-18
I've used both and like GAIA much more. Scrolling around waiting for the maps to load ala OnX, makes it unusable in the field.

12-Mar-18
Big fan of Gaia..

From: Jaquomo
12-Mar-18
"Team Hunt", I found two sections of Roosevelt National Forest in northern CO that were incorrectly labeled as Rocky Mountain National Park. If I hadn't grown up there and live right next to those two sections I might have thought I was breaking the law by hunting there. Those secions are miles from the nearest RMNP boundary.

When I called your support team to report it the gentleman I talked with didn't seem too concerned, said they would check on it and maybe correct it when they did an update in a year or two. Didn't seem like a big deal, which made me wonder how many other errors are on there as well. I couldn't trust it after that.

For landowner info I go with DIY Hunting chip, which is way less expensive than a similar OnX chip, and shows all the closed and decommissioned USFS roads and trails that your chip doesn't show. That is extremely valuable information for backcountry hunting.

From: onX Hunt
12-Mar-18
When did you report these errors? I'd be happy to pass the info to our mapping team to look into them again if you have coordinates, pictures, and any other information. We update on a yearly basis so it would not take up to 2 years for it to get corrected so I apologize for any confusion on that end.

From: Ambush
12-Mar-18
I bought Gaia maps on Kurt's recommendation. While in Arizona this past January, I up graded to Premium (and got my original purchase re-funded) because I was hunting close by private land, lease and public. All the landowners and phone numbers were shown as well as boundaries. Very good topo, as well. I will always carry a GPS on remote hunts as well for the reasons mentioned already.

I used Gaia on my Wyoming antelope hunt to. I put all my landmarks, campsite, waterholes and access points on my phone before I left BC. Very easy.

Gaia definitely has better features in the US than Canada.

From: Jaquomo
12-Mar-18
It's been several years. I don't remember because I didn't keep track of the date and gave the chip away with a warning not to trust the land status. The guy I spoke with said they had just updated the CO chip so it would be a "year or two". But his general attitude seemed like I was bothering him with something trivial and he wasn't too concerned. I'm not sure he even wrote down the T, R, and section numbers I reported. Just seemed like he didn't really care, like "We'll probably my catch it next time".

From: onX Hunt
12-Mar-18
I apologize for that experience. I can assure you that we have tightened things up here and I would encourage you to check out our 7 day free trial membership for your phone, tablet, and computer to take a look at the area again. The information that you find on the computer and the app would be the same information that has been uploaded to the Hunt Chip. Being that it was a couple of years ago, we have expanded our team in that area as well so we are able to keep things updated consistently.

From: Jaquomo
12-Mar-18
Thanks for the reply and glad to hear things are going better at OnX. If I were interested in your service I'd take the time to look at the area with the free trial, but I've moved on to platforms which I believe have better features for my needs (off-grid backcountry navigation). But thanks anyway and good luck!

From: Deertick
12-Mar-18
That there exchange between Lou an On-X outlines why it's tough to own a business. One employee with a (perceived) attitude problem can suddenly "grow" into a much larger problem. I have sympathy for both sides! I enjoy Gaia's interface, and I have very little experience with On-X other than a trial I downloaded once and didn't give a fair chance to. I think the thing to realize from this thread is that the phone apps work well, and you should consider them. BTW, Gaia's premium service does have landowner information (names). I know, because I checked out my place!

From: WapitiBob
12-Mar-18
I used the Onx Iphone app almost exclusively last season but they're years behind GAIA in development.

From: jdee
12-Mar-18
Thank you onXHunt, give me some time to see if my lost gps shows up and I will get in touch with you. I think I did register the chip but I’m not sure I bought a Wyoming chip too but I have that one. I bought them online from onX.

From: Jaquomo
12-Mar-18
Deertick, you're correct about GAIA Premium does have landowner info, and I phrased that wrong. Since most of what I do is offline, I download the GAIA maps ahead of time on my mobile device. I almost exclusively use the satellite and USGS topo views, so I would need to download a third saved map with the land ownership overlay. For the rare times when I need to know who owns a specific property I can click on the DIY chip on the little Garmin eTrex, which is always in my pack as a backup.

Only twice have I needed to do that, both times unplanned and a long way from cell service to download that layer.

Unless I'm missing something with the GAIA downloaded map capability, which is entirely possible given that I'm old and my faculties aren't what they once were....

I will say that GAIA's remote email support has been very good, highly responsive and prompt whenever I had a problem or a question.

12-Mar-18
If topo's and navigation are what you need on your phone, GAIA is hard to beat fellas. Very affordable as well. God Bless men

From: md5252
12-Mar-18
I tried the OnX trial and it worked for a day. When I went back on I had trouble with it and with the map layers. They have nice map layers but it gets a little busy on the screen if you overlay them. I have GAIA Premium too and it’s really good. I especially like the compass/direction arrow feature and tracks display.

From: Brijake
13-Mar-18
How many states do you get with Gaia Premium?

From: WapitiBob
13-Mar-18
All of em

From: Dino
13-Mar-18
My On X maps app has been excellent. Customer service is also exceptional.

From: elkstabber
13-Mar-18
I think I'll be going GAIA. I've tried Onx for the last three years with ups and downs. This past weekend I decided to scout some public land in VA and I tried to use Onx. After four unsuccessful attempts I finally got a map to load. My phone confirmed that the map was saved and was 269MB in size. Then, at the trailhead I turn the phone to airplane mode and open the maps. It's gone! The file appears to exist but has a file size of 0kb. What a complete failure. Keep in mind that I've used Onx successfully in the past. I'm done with it.

I'm going GAIA. GAIA maps, that is :)

From: onX Hunt
13-Mar-18
elkstabber - Please ensure you have the most updated version of the app and that your phone software is up to date as well. Being that it's showing 0kb, it sounds like something interrupted the download process, which could occur when something interrupts the wifi signal temporarily. I'd be happy to answer any questions or information along to our team. Feel free to send me a private message as well

From: Bowfreak
13-Mar-18
Do either of these platforms show public roads? I know one antelope unit(in one of the WY counties) I am looking at doesn't have their public roads online in GIS form. I found a paper map but it says this map may or may not be accurate. Lol

From: HDE
13-Mar-18
Never even heard of GAIA...

From: WapitiBob
13-Mar-18
The only source for current county road info is the county.

From: Bowfreak
13-Mar-18
That's the problem Bob. I have called the road and bridge department with no luck.

From: Peter Denzin
13-Mar-18
Used OnX extensively last season on an iphone 6 in multiple states and i have had the old GAIA a few years before that. GAIA is much more responsive and hasnt changed vs OnX. OnX has become super sloooooooow. After some other trouble shooting suggestions OnX says my 400 or so waypoints is the issue and suggested I export all of them and only upload what areas I need when I need them as the solution. If there was only a way to easily do that. I will be upgrading to GAIA prem before this fall.

From: Michael
13-Mar-18
When I had OnX it froze up on me all the time. Last year I went with GAIA. Absolutely no complaints here. The premium subscription is definetly worth it.

Like Lou said just download maps before your hunt and there are zero worries while on the mountain with no cell signal.

From: Dotman
14-Mar-18
I’ve used both and prefer Gaia.

From: WapitiBob
14-Mar-18
I'd like GAIA to drop the 10K tile per map limit.

From: Mr_steve
14-Mar-18
The fact that OnX is responding on this is one point for them. I like the layers they provide. And their chips are great for a handheld GPS. I generally use it for scouting with the layers.

From: Kurt
14-Mar-18
Doubt the old GAIA program is 10k per map download? Seems I can download a huge area that takes quite awhile over fast WIFI? I have many Mb of saved maps on the phone...not done 10k at a time.

Is Wapiti Bob referencing a free trial sample or has GAIA dumbed down the main program?

From: HDE
14-Mar-18
Still, I always take topos layed out in a UTM grid where signal of any kind is nonexistant. Land ownership is noted on them as well and I can get the boundaries saved in a GPS I occasionally turn on as a reference.

From: WapitiBob
14-Mar-18
GAIA has a 10K TILE download limit, per map, for ESRI world imagery. About 200 megs. OnX uses a 5 sq mile limit, about 330 megs. Both are a pain in the rear.

From: onX Hunt
14-Mar-18
WapitiBob - there is also the 10 mile and 150 mile option as well. Each size will affect the detail level you get, 5 mile being the most detail - 150 mile being the least, and you can save multiple maps to cover a larger area. We are looking at additional options for saving maps for offline use as well

From: onX Hunt
14-Mar-18
WapitiBob - there is also the 10 mile and 150 mile option as well. Each size will affect the detail level you get, 5 mile being the most detail - 150 mile being the least, and you can save multiple maps to cover a larger area. We are looking at additional options for saving maps for offline use as well

From: planebow
14-Mar-18
The only thing I don't like about my onX is you cant download the maps to my sd card instead of the phones memory

From: elkmtngear
14-Mar-18
I'm going to have the Onyx Wyoming chip in my GPS, and Gaia Premium on my phone this Season.

We'll see which one gets used the most, but having used both on my Android in the past, Gaia has a commanding lead so far.

From: Scar Finga
14-Mar-18
I have had both and honestly I don't care for either on my phone, and I refuse to pay the "premium" fees they ask for. I had the AZ one for my GPS, but it died on me and wouldn't work in my new one. I do carry a GPS, but I usually go buy a really good TOPO map that will last me years and years. I can custom order one, water proof and to whatever scale I want for the most part. It doesn't need batteries, it'll work in extreme weather conditions. I have used the ONX while hunting and it wasn't very accurate for me. it showed the road I was on as being about a mile away. The GAIA I just downloaded a couple weeks ago, and so far, I am not really impressed. Could be that I am pretty old school, I still carry a compass. it also never has dead batteries or tells me I'm a mile away from the road I am on:/

From: onX Hunt
15-Mar-18
planebow - Being able to save to an SD card is a functionality we are looking into! I'll reiterate that to our team!

From: WapitiBob
15-Mar-18
The 10 mile/150 mile detail levels are effectively unusable for sat imagery. I understand you need to try to limit server bandwidth but while 5 miles/300 megs might work for a food plot back east, It's nothing out west.

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