Question about Magellan eXplorist 500 GPS Receiver
My unit has been working fine ever since purchased, today when I turned it on a mesage came out UNIT CURRENTLY CONTAINS NO MAP! and also INITIATING MAP UPLOAD. I conected the unit to PC and then it allows me to get into the MENU. I reset to factory default but the problem remains. Any idea on what may be the problem and how to solve it?
You can download the US basemap for the 500 at
Rename it BASEMAP.MGI
Then copy it in the directory "background maps" in the SD card of your 500, by using a SD card reader/writer.
Insert the SD card in your 500 and connect it to your PC; then turn it on;it will turn on regularly, because the basemap in the card will be detected; turn it to USB file transfer mode, and copy the basemap from the SD card to the directory "background maps" of the 500.
Posted on Feb 17, 2008
I had the very same problem, partly self inflicted as you may read below. In the state my Explorist was in, Magellan's Conversion Manager software did not recognise it so the SD card was the only way to get into it, as suggested by Pippokid, 2008 Feb 17. I had to buy a universal card reader/writer to do it but it worked fine and I again have a working GPS. Thanks Pippokid.
I didn't download the basemap from the site suggested however, I had taken the precaustion of backing up the basemap (in this case an Australian one) on my computer before the troubles began. Not that everything is sweet with this Explorist (see below) but at least it knows where it is now and will transfer POI and track files etc to the computer.
Now about the original problem, which I still have and while I'll post separately so don't jump to conclusions. Although the file transfer mode works fine, NMEA input to the computer for OziExplorer moving map operation did not and still doesn't work. In the course of extended head scratching I resorted to the Explorist's "secret" menu (menu-right-left-right, item 40) to check that the baud rate was indeed 4800. It was. In further desparation I set out to explore what all the other codes were for. Don't try this at home kids, that's when the GPS spat the dummy and I was almost resigned to an expensive return-for-repair or worse. Read all about it under the new problem "No NMEA communication".
By the way, since getting the unit to work again (thanks again Pippokid) I thought I'd try to refresh the firmware previously updated to Rev 5.2.57. The zipped Explorist_500_600_2_57.exe installer that I downloaded from the Magellan site now won't reload the firmware and no longer recognises the presence of my Explorist. This is depite it appearing as "Explorist" in Windows device manager and "Removeable Disk" under explorer where it transfers files satisfactorily. There may be some common fault between the firmware update and the NMEA communication modes.
Posted on Jun 06, 2008
For those who may reach this post (looking for a solution to the "UNIT CURRENTLY CONTAINS NO MAP! INITIATING MAP UPLOAD." error on your Magellan Explorist 500) and find the above links not working, you may head over to http://sethandlisa.com/downloads/basemap.mgi . I just got that message and when I called Magellan's completely unhelpful tech support, I was told that my GPS toast and that I was going to have to send it in and pay for a new one.
Well, unfortunately for Magellan, one of our fellow geocachers came to the rescue with this basemap image.
To make this work, just connect your GPS to your computer --- with a usb cable that works.... :) -- and then drop this file in your Background Maps folder (on the internal memory -- make sure that you don't have an SD card installed)... Then after it copies it in there (it may tell you that you have a file there currently and you may not be able to see it -- that is because it is a hidden file so that you don't accidentally delete it -- and make sure that you overwrite that file). After the copying finishes, turn your GPS unit off.
Power on and voila! It should be good to go!
Magellan makes some really nice GPS's however, their tech support is aweful! Don't even waste your time calling -- they don't know what you are saying and I guarantee you won't understand them! I have had 2 separate issues with my explorist 500 and both times they have said to send it in, and both times I have gotten it fixed.... they are the ones who actually manufactured it and are supposedly staffing this "tech support" right??? How come we have to post all the answers here???
Hope this post makes someone's day!
Posted on May 16, 2008
I have magellan exporist xl gps. GPS suddenly show on screen : "explorist XL" after that machine stuck.
Posted on May 29, 2009
A 6ya expert can help you resolve that issue over the phone in a minute or two.
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Posted on Jan 02, 2017
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