The Garmin RV 785 VS 890 has been an ongoing debate on many RV forums and communities. Both of these devices help you navigate through new destinations and find the next interesting campground. However, there are a few differences that set them apart.
The Garmin RV 785 has a dash cam, while the 890 model doesn’t. The Garmin RV 890, however, has a higher microSD card slot storage capacity, more navigation features, and a slightly larger screen with better resolution.
The choice boils down to your preference. Let’s dive into the comparisons of the Garmin RV 890 vs 785 below.
Table of Contents
Comparisons Of Features
The Garmin RV 785 and 890 share a lot of the same features and have a few differences. Let’s get to know them one by one.
1. Map Coverage
Both the Garmin 785 and 890 have almost the same maps built into the navigation devices. Both of these units include detailed coverage of Mexico, Canada, Puerto Rico, the US Virgin Islands, the Bahamas, the Cayman Islands, and the US.
Millions of points of interest are part of the maps, including public campgrounds and a directory of RV parks. You can search for places with different amenities, including gas stations and electric hookups.
These units can also automatically classify multiple destinations into a systematic route for errands and even specify undesirable areas to avoid.
Both of these models provide free lifetime updates on the maps, so you always get the latest navigation information. These updates can be downloaded many times per year without any fees.
2. Screen Size
Both of these units can display a widescreen mode. However, the Garmin 785 has a screen size that’s slightly smaller than the 890. While the Garmin RV 890 has an 8-inch screen size, the 785 model has a screen size of seven inches.
The 785 model offers a resolution of 1024 x 600 pixels with a real glass panel and multi-touch technology for zooming in and out of the map. Meanwhile, the 890 model provides a slightly higher resolution at 1280 x 800 pixels. The maps can also be viewed in different orientations – landscape or portrait.
The latest map updates and software can be downloaded by connecting the units to a WiFi network. An icon on the screen will be shown when new updates are available.
If you can’t connect to a wireless network, you can use a USB cable to link the device to your computer and get the updates through Garmin Express.
Both of these Garmin models can work with Bluetooth-enabled phones. You can receive or make phone calls within the 33 feet range.
4. Navigation Features
The Garmin RV 785 AND 890 share a lot of navigation features, like voice command, live traffic updates, and driving directions. They also offer GPS simulators, 3D/2D map view options, and speed limits.
Both have Trip Data for determining the average speed and total driving time. However, the 890 model provides extra features. It includes TracBack to get back to a past location and Fusion-Link to control the stereo’s volume.
5. Dash Cam
The Garmin RV 785 is built with a dash camera for capturing the road view ahead, while the 890 doesn’t have this feature. The captured videos and photos can be shown on the unit or any connected computer.
The built-in dash camera of Garmin RV 785 provides many great features, like the Advanced Driver Assistance System (ADAS), to warn against any possible dangers while driving.
6. Storage And Battery Life
The Garmin RV 890 has a higher storage capacity than the 785 unit. While the 890 model offers up to 256 GB of memory, the 785 model only allows up to 64 GB.
More specifically, the RV 785 includes an 8-GB microSD card for capturing dash cam videos and another slot for optional map updates. The Garmin RV 890, on the other hand, provides only a memory microSD card slot for optional map updates since it’s not built with a dash camera.
The battery life, however, is the same with these two units, approximately up to two hours.
The Garmin RV 785 only includes a Garmin Suction Cup and Magnetic Mount to mount the unit on the dashboard or windshield. On the other hand, the 890 model includes the same windshield mount plus a more fixed screw-down mount and a 1-inch ball mount adapter to mount with third-party device mounts.
The Garmin RV 785 and 890 have different accessories. The Garmin RV 785 works with the Garmin Vehicle 12-volt Power Cable and Garmin BC 35 wireless backup camera. Meanwhile, the Garmin RV 890 accessories include the Garmin PowerSwitch for controlling 12-volt accessories via smartphones and the FMI cable with FM antenna.
Garmin RV 785 Review
The Garmin RV 785 is a portable navigator with a dash cam for extra security. You can watch the recorded footage on the high-resolution 7-inch screen and connect the device with Bluetooth or WiFi networks.
Road restrictions info allows the unit to search for the safest route for your RV. It can avoid hazardous roads and high winds, definitely beating some website routings. When looking for a campground, the unit will show the same campgrounds listed with reviews from reliable sources like TripAdvisor.
The unit is huge but seems pretty durable. The magnet also mounts on the windshield very securely. The GPS and unlimited updates are a big bonus.
However, we had difficulty launching the software for the smartphone. We discovered that the font size needed to be reduced to make it work.
Garmin RV 890 Review
The Garmin RV 890 offers a bigger and better resolution than the 785 model. You can even view the maps in landscape or portrait mode, depending on your preference.
This particular device offers more navigation features than the 785 unit, making it more convenient to bring for RVing. It can connect to a compatible Fusion stereo, and the user can control the volume through Bluetooth. Know the different stats of your trip with the Trip Data shortcut and retrace your current route through the TracBack feature.
One thing that we like about this unit is its multiple mounting options. Besides the windshield, you can mount the navigator device with many third-party mounting options and screw the unit for a more permanent fix. This model also provides a higher storage capacity as the microSD slot can take as much as 256 GB.
The only drawback we see is its lack of a dash camera.
In this Garmin RV 785 vs 890 debate, the better navigator unit depends on your preference. If you want a basic dash cam for your motorhome, the Garmin RV 785 might be a popular choice. However, if you want more convenience, use Garmin RV 890 with its more navigation features, higher storage capacity, and better screen resolution.
Let us know which side you’re taking in the comments below. If you like this article, please share it with your friends.
Welcome to a new journey! I am Rober Clark, also a full-time RV-er and currently exploring the US with Dane. I have four years of working as a contractor, so building a home inside the RV is an extremely rewarding task for me. I find new challenges and new limits to break every day.