Compatibility with new Garmin devices and Unicode Maps

Last week I changed all maps of countries which do not use Latin as main script to Unicode. Before this was not the case for the Europe, Asia and Africa continent map. On the other hand all unicode maps – are now also available the respective main script of the country. This even seems to work quite well for countries like China which has no alphabet at all. All modern devices – should be quite fine displaying them. Mapsource sometimes shows garbled text however – as will very very old GPS devices – which unluckily also don’t support unicode. So I’m sorry – but Garmin devices that are pre ~2006 will only work with maps from countries with Latin script now (e.g. Vista C, or GPS Maps 60C, I’m not certain about Vista Cx or GPS Maps 60Cx – I think they support unicode maps). I don’t think there are many people using them still anyhow. 

I will still put more effort in reworking the naming depending on language in the next couple of weeks. All non Unicode maps are available to download via the Non Unicode tab on the respective download pages. Only a couple of countries (Sri-Lanka, Nepal, Afghanistan, Cambodia) have no proper non unicode script support – and will be therefore either Unicode or a latin – which is not too useful.

You will need to download the Non Unicode Version if you have one of the following devices:

  • Edge 520,820,1000
  • GPS Maps 64 series
  • Etrex 20x / 30x (not “etrex 30”)
  • Etrex Touch series
  • Some recent Nuvi devices – as well as some super old devices that do not support Unicode. (E.g. Garmin Vista C, GPS Maps 60 C)
  • Updated: Basically all devices first sold in 2016 or newer – e.g.
  • Oregon 700/750
  • Epix
  • Many Zumo devices

If you have other modern or semi-modern devices like any Oregon, any Dakota, etrex Vista/Legend HCx or etrex 20, etrex 30, or GPS Maps 62, any edge but edge 1000, then of course you do not need non unicode maps. Stick to the normal Unicode (or for latin countries – latin maps).

This is due to a firmware bug that Garmin introduced as part of their efforts to cut down on people “pirating” their maps. However by doing that they also cut down on Unicode maps produced by mkgmap or even some of their old (legitimate) maps which are not running anymore on these devices. You will know that you need to use the Non Unicode map if on boot your GPS device tells you to “unlock maps”. Why is the Europe Map in Unicode? Well for example in Greece and some Eastern Europe countries the script is Cyrillic not latin – and only Unicode maps can contain both scripts in one map. So the non unicode map will not correctly show labels in such countries. Use the country non unicode map instead. They are always in the predominant script of the country.

Note1: if you install the non Unicode version of a map – you will overwrite the Unicode map. You can only have either or installed.

Note2: The contourlines are identical for openmtbmap/velomap and unicode or non unicode. You only need to download them once. On updates it’s enough to re-download and reinstall the map installer.

Besides I’ve added again quite a few new countries – especially in Asia – so that you do not need to get the continent map for these countries anymore.

19 comments to Compatibility with new Garmin devices and Unicode Maps

  • lupus

    Danke für den Tipp, funktioniert jetzt, habe das völlig übersehen, dass es von der GCC-Karte 4 Versionen gibt von denen für mich allerdings nur eine sinnvoll ist.

  • lupus

    Hallo extremcarver

    ich habe das leidige Unicode Problem (Garminfehlermeldung: Karten sind nicht freigeschalten) auf der aktuellen GCC Karte (englisch ohne contours)

    gibt es dafür eine Lösung?

    • extremecarver

      Da hast du ja doch auch die Unicode Karte heruntergeladen (du sagst aber du hast englische Versionen, gibst dann aber im Text danach die Local Language Version an!) – es gibt jeweils english/Local Language als Unicode oder Non Unicode!

  • koullis

    I would like to know if Edge 1030 is supported.

    • extremecarver

      I’m pretty sure it is (as with other new units – only non unicode maps will work). Unicode maps will only work if you find a way to patch the firmware (not sure if those tools already support the edge 1030)

  • wolfgang.sudau@googlemail.vom

    Hallo , möchte mein Abo kündigen,
    wo / wie kann ich das machen
    oder reicht diese mail ?

    Grüße Wolfgang

  • john224

    Hi extremecarver, thank you for efforts in bringing excellent mapping to all of us, I’ve enjoyed excellent trips thanks to you all. I’m currently using Velomap-greatbritain-24.06.2016 version 1, on a garmin map62s, would it be worth my while to update this map to a later version ? Regards john224

    • extremecarver

      yes – over 1 year is quite old. In OSM improvements come quite quickly – so you will have a more complete map plus in some places roads may have actually changed. If you just follow big cycleroutes I guess not much difference – 95% of all changes will be just more map data (usually not so important stuff such as buildings, or housenumbers, landuse/forest and so on or small pathes).

  • Hans Gerd Bosch

    Garmin 64 s
    Die Europakarte Format Unicode akzeptiert das Gerät nicht, die Karte im Format Non Unicode wird im Gerät nicht angezeigt. Zur Ziet benutzte ich eine Eurokarte aus dem jahr 2014 (hatte ich noch in der Sicherheitskopie). Was ist zu tun?

    hans Gerd

    • extremecarver

      1 – korrekt. Unicode Karte geht nicht.
      2. Du machst jetzt wohl irgendwas anders bei der Non Unicode Europa ODER – du hast die anderen Europakarten nicht entfernt! Also entweder Fehler beim senden gemacht – oder du hast noch alte Versionen der Europakarte am 64S – entferne am besten mal alle anderen Karten vom Gerät zum überprüfen.
      3. Pass auf – du brauchst immer Installer und Kartendaten derselben Version – also nicht Installer der Non Unicode Europakarte und Kartendaten der Unicode Europakarte nehmen.

  • VeloChristian

    Der Liste hier fehlen noch Oregon 700/750, die auf der Seite bereits aufgeführt sind. Bitte ergänzen, das spart dem nächsten einen falschen Download.

  • Klaus Konrad

    Hallo Felix,

    nur zur Klarstellung ich habe dir am 12.01.2017 per Post-Banküberweisung € 28,– für 2 Jahre auf dein Konto AT93——-52 überwiesen, mache dir bitte die Mühe und prüfe es nach. Erbitte deine Bestätigung!!!

    Viele Grüße

    • extremecarver

      hab grad deinen Account geupdated – das mit der Banküberweisung ist halt sehr blöd – weil mir dann oft Daten für die EU VATMOSS Richtlinie fehlen. Daher biete ich die Zahlweise halt auch nicht mehr an. In deinem Fall hab ich zum Glück ausreichende Daten.

  • pken

    32GB micro SDHC card already has velomaps of Germany, Austria and Great Britain installed (by a friend).

    Map install confirms installation complete overtime I try it but does not show on the card.

    • extremecarver

      Try zooming into France – and set all velomaps to “enabled” in the map setup menu on your etrex. Maps sent by Mapinstall are not visible into Basecamp (maybe your friend sent the maps with mgkmap directly).
      Usually Mapinstall just adds maps now to an existing gmapsupp.img (watch the size of SD_Card/garmin/gmapsupp.img if it increases vs before sending when you send some maps).

  • pken

    Downloaded velofrance_macosx, opened with unarchiver, chose/highlighted 14 maps of southern France and sent them to a 32gb card on my etrex 30x. Mapinstal says installation complete but not showing on the card. Did`nt find the maps under non unicode. Please advise what you think I am doing wrong/what I should be doing?

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