: 2005 STS Navigation is horrible, or maybe its me?



Joe V
09-30-10, 09:20 PM
Okay, I admit I have only had my STS for a very short period of time and I absolutely love the ride, power (I have the 3.6 but it is more than adequate and I got over 30 MPG on the highway the other day according to the computer). The techno gadgetry is great except when it does not work!! Voice commands??? Forget it! Nav??? My $50 GPS is smarter! I was two blocks from my house and all I needed to do is make a quick left and a right -then two houses from the corner, and it wants to send me a mile up the road to turn around! No, the street was not a new one and it has been there for years! Such a shame. Having nav built into the dash is very cool especially if it worked! My $50 gps has text to speech and this does not!!

My question is, I am told there is a software update for this system (not the map update).

- Is there an update and does it make the NAV usable or at least almost work?
- Does anyone here know where I can get a copy of the firmware/software update disk? The dealer wants over $250 to pop the disk in and hit some buttons. They are supposedly the only ones that have the disk!
- Has anyone done the update themselves? Is it difficult?


Thanks, maybe one of you can give me hope that I will have a nav system that will do something other than tell you what road you are on and actually give accurate directions!

Thanks in advance.

RippyPartsDept
09-30-10, 09:43 PM
gotta get a dealer to install the software update (i think)
call up a few dealers and ask and see what kind of responses you get and how much they want to charge
you might be able to do it yourself ( http://gmnavdisc.com will show a software update disc for your car if there is on available - at least it does for me, but i'm logged in as a dealer so...)

Joe V
09-30-10, 11:18 PM
Thanks for your reply. I did call GMNAVDISC and they said that all they have is the map update discs and not the software/firmware discs which I have to get installed by the dealer. It seems there are people who actually have the update disc. My question is ...was your experience with the NAV system as bad as mine? Was it better after the update?

RippyPartsDept
10-01-10, 12:01 AM
i don't have a nav (99 deville)
i was just speaking from experience, but i do loathe factory nav systems from all manufacturers ... if i ever had one i'd never use it for directions, just the map

ddgm
10-01-10, 10:42 AM
The software update doesn't make the NAV any easier to use, it is mostly for voice recognition, blue tooth and a few other personalization functions.
Do you have the seperate NAV manual? It does work, you just have to learn the procedures but it is not what you would call user friendly. It doesn't have text to speech,
just "turn right in 100 meters" not "turn right on Main Street in 100 meters". I too have a Garmin which I find is nothing short of amazing, but the large screen of the NAV is
great. Obviously the newer the Map DVD is, the more chance of having newer information regarding roads and POIs. Someone posted a "Cheat Sheat" for this NAV, do a search and
if you can't find it, I have it somewhere in the bowels of my computer, I think! $250 seems high, like another said, look around at other dealers, some dealers don't even know
what you're talking about regarding this.
Doug

Joe V
10-01-10, 11:53 AM
Hey Doug,

My concern is not so much that the NAV would be easier to use (I have a degree in Electrical Engineering so I can hopefully figure out the cryptic icons) it is that it should make reasonable route choices rather than send you 2 miles out of your way when you are 2 blocks from the destination! I do understand that the map update would help, but the street it should have chosen was depicted on the map/screen and has been there 50 years! I know portable GPS are usually better than factory but this one is ridiculous! Bluetooth does not always link up so that would be helpful and it would be great to have voice commands that work! Do you know the part number of the update disk? I am hoping to find someone that I can buy/rent/borrow it from. Yes, I realize I bought a cadillac, but I bought it for under $15K! So I would like to avoid the Cadillac dealer which charges you as if you could afford a $50K car! $280 to pop a disc in is a little excessive. IS a regular GM dealer able to do it?

Thanks Again!

Joe V
10-01-10, 11:55 AM
Chris, I am told they only have Map updates, would you be able to check on a price for the update disk and let me know?

Thanks

ddavis75007
10-01-10, 11:56 AM
gotta get a dealer to install the software update (i think)
call up a few dealers and ask and see what kind of responses you get and how much they want to charge
you might be able to do it yourself ( http://gmnavdisc.com will show a software update disc for your car if there is on available - at least it does for me, but i'm logged in as a dealer so...)

To see if there is a Firmware update, you do have to be logged in as a dealer. Would it be possible for you to see what the latest Firmware release is for a 2009 STS RWD N*? My dealer is computer illiterate.

Thanks,
Doug Davis

Theislander
10-01-10, 12:34 PM
Hi Guys,

I bought a 2005 sts 3.6 two days ago and I've been looking around for the updated Nav disk.Would like to know if there has to be a firmware update.
Thanks

RippyPartsDept
10-01-10, 02:11 PM
No [firmware/software] disc update for 2005 STS nav, but there is one for the 2009 STS - there still might be a dealer programming update though for the 2005... check w/ your local dealerships

ddgm
10-01-10, 04:14 PM
There is a 2010 NAV map update for the 2005 - 2010 STS, It is part number 20861474 and is available from www.gmnavdisc.com for $199.00
I have a 2005 STS with the 2009 disc, part number 25976806 which is also still available for $199.00, these are both 2 disc sets for East & West US and Canada. I think the maps are the same , only the POIs are different. Sometimes they are on eBay cheaper, make sure of the part numbers.

Doug

mywifekids1
10-01-10, 05:14 PM
There is a firmware update for 05 sts you just have to find a dealer that has the firmware update disk their have been treads posted a few months back on this do a firmware update search, this will update voice recognition and bluetooth your other option is to get a updated nav disk as stated in the above tread.My 05 works pretty good with some research and persistance it got the firmware update and I have the 09 nav disk.

RippyPartsDept
10-01-10, 05:32 PM
i'm sorry ... i'll edit the above post, i was referring to software update discs

Joe V
10-01-10, 10:30 PM
Here is my dilemma, I would not mind investing a little time and money into the nav if I thought it would actually yield a something useful!! Get this one. I am at the CORNER of an intersection at a light . I am looking right at the front door of my house which is three houses from the corner. I told the NAV I wanted to go home. IT WANTED ME TO TURN RIGHT (MY HOUSE WAS LEFT) AND DRIVE A HUGE 3 MILE LOOP TO GET TO MY HOUSE WHICH WAS 100 FT AWAY!!! It had my house properly marked on the screen. Oh my God it cannot be this bad! Maybe I have a defective unit? Seriously, there is no way the nav is this pathetic. Is there? If there is some hope, I will keep trying. Otherwise I will buy a $50 portable and stick it on the window ...SIGH. Has anyone had a good experience with 2005 NAV?

caddyfat2
10-01-10, 11:39 PM
I have a 2005 and when I first got my STS I felt the same way but after playing with it and constantly using it I now find it much easier to manipulate.Play with the different routes......just play with it everyday and before you know it you will come to like it....really! :yup:

how all I need is a lockpick

Joe V
10-02-10, 12:24 AM
Thanks, do you have any tips for me? Perhaps there is a setting I can change?
I was so excited because I searched for a chinese restaurant name and it found it!! I told it to route and it sent me in the opposite direction! Oh well.

If I could get this thing working I would by a lockpick but for now it would be a huge waste!

Loren
10-02-10, 12:48 PM
I'm not trying to hijack this thread but I have a question. Does the Nav in the STS talk to you? I bought an 08 STS without the Nav and then bought a TOM TOM GPS, an XL 325 SE at Walmart on black Friday for $89 and I wonder how I ever traveled without one. This thing talks to me and tells me how far the next turn is, which lane to get in/stay in, and a whole lot more. I just got back Thursday afternoon from a 5,124 mile trip back East and Mandy (the voice I chose) really helped. She found hotels, motels, restaurants, gas stations and the shortest routes, with the exception of Paducah KY, poor thing took me to the hotel of my choice in an industrial area down by the railroad tracks and there was nothing there, she was totally lost. I finally turned it off as nothing seemed to work right around there until the next morning.
So, does the Cadillac Nav talk? Just curious.

turnne
10-02-10, 05:41 PM
Every navigation system I have ever seen...factory or hand held....speaks to some sort of degree depending on which system it is

That being said the Nav system in the STS is not very good...ie..user friendly
There are $99 handhelds that work better and are more user friendly...and there are other manufacturers that have much better factory Nav systems

I won't even go into the voice recognition...LOL
It doesn't work without a lot of baby sitting and repeated phrases....again another function that other manufacturers have excelled at

That being said...the Nav does not...just difficult to program...and it looks a whole lit better...to me.....with the factory Nav unit in the dash than the Non Nav set up


Warren

EChas3
10-02-10, 10:39 PM
I don't have any trouble like Joe's; occasionally, I find a minor shortcomings with the Nav but I consider it satisfactory in both my 2006 and my wife's 2007. Both have the firmware upgrade and the Version 5 (2008) Disks. Virtually all the aftermarket units are better than OEM; just like A/V systems. They have to compete; the auto manufacturers don't. Does anyone choose a car based on the Nav or A/V system?

It sounds to me like there's something wrong with Joe's Nav unit. I'd be interested if another STS with Navigation has the same trouble at that location. That would confirm/refute my suspicion.

If he has no warranty, I recommend watching ebay &/or seeking a used parts dealer for a replacement. The firmware upgrade should take less than an hour and if a dealer has the disk, so it should be well under $100. (But it can be hard to find a dealer & tech writer that knows anything about it.)

AllWheelEric
10-03-10, 11:59 AM
You have to remember that these cars hit the market in 2004 and the electronics are essentially unchanged since. That means major design decisions were made around 2001, so it's no surprise you've seen better by now. Even for 2001, they certainly could have made better design decisions. However, if you've got the factory navigation, it pays to read the manual, and learn to use the system. Experiment with it even when you know where you're going. It's not bad when you know how to use it. Some features do work better than my TomTom (like exit info), and you can't beat the large screen.

AllWheelEric
10-03-10, 12:02 PM
Joe V: Are you in (or on the edge of) a very rural area? The map DVDs will not route you along or through certain rural areas. It should warn you when you enter such an area, but maybe only if you're under route guidance.

turnne
10-03-10, 12:18 PM
I don't have any trouble like Joe's; occasionally, I find a minor shortcomings with the Nav but I consider it satisfactory in both my 2006 and my wife's 2007. Both have the firmware upgrade and the Version 5 (2008) Disks. Virtually all the aftermarket units are better than OEM; just like A/V systems. They have to compete; the auto manufacturers don't. Does anyone choose a car based on the Nav or A/V system?
)

I find quite the opposite....a factory Nav unit is comparable to a handheld IF they were from the same generation
IE...if the car was new to the market that year the best factory automotive Nav systems are on equal footing with the hand helds of the same time
That technology changes drastically every 2 years..so after that time its archaic...however I have seen factory systems...Lexus LS for example..that was on the same user friendly and quality level as my old Tom Tom from a couple of years ago

For a car to really compete in a particular class you expect it to be up to the level of the competition..or at the very least very close
The STS was not close to a few of its competitors in this regard

Its great that you are happy with yours...depending on your tolerance for its idiosyncrasies..You CAN make it work for you
I think we have already touched on the voice activation system of the car

But I also realize it's the cheapest( on the used car market) of the cars that were in its class
Like my dad used to always tell me.."you get what you pay for"

Would I have paid an extra $5K for a better Nav and voice activation system

No


Warren

KRSTS
10-03-10, 12:47 PM
You have to remember that these cars hit the market in 2004 and the electronics are essentially unchanged since. That means major design decisions were made around 2001, so it's no surprise you've seen better by now. Even for 2001, they certainly could have made better design decisions. However, if you've got the factory navigation, it pays to read the manual, and learn to use the system. Experiment with it even when you know where you're going. It's not bad when you know how to use it. Some features do work better than my TomTom (like exit info), and you can't beat the large screen.

I believe th electronics were substantially upgraded in the 2008 models.

Caddyloversincebirth
10-04-10, 10:41 AM
Here is my dilemma, I would not mind investing a little time and money into the nav if I thought it would actually yield a something useful!! Get this one. I am at the CORNER of an intersection at a light . I am looking right at the front door of my house which is three houses from the corner. I told the NAV I wanted to go home. IT WANTED ME TO TURN RIGHT (MY HOUSE WAS LEFT) AND DRIVE A HUGE 3 MILE LOOP TO GET TO MY HOUSE WHICH WAS 100 FT AWAY!!! It had my house properly marked on the screen. Oh my God it cannot be this bad! Maybe I have a defective unit? Seriously, there is no way the nav is this pathetic. Is there? If there is some hope, I will keep trying. Otherwise I will buy a $50 portable and stick it on the window ...SIGH. Has anyone had a good experience with 2005 NAV?


I have 06 STS N* w/Nav and i think it works fine. you may want to check your route type settings. it has choices for shortest route, quickest route etc... and that will change adjust which way it takes you...i have played with it and it sometimes shows drastic changes in the route it take based on which option you are set up for...it's definately not "user friendly" to just get in and start using though...that i agree.

Greg00coupe
10-04-10, 12:57 PM
I'm thinking there is a setting that needs changed as the post above mine indicates.

I've never had a problem with the directions it gave me just the user friendliness or lack there of. I have a maybe 8 y/o garmian that sold at best buy for $1,300 at one time and it's a lot better.

When I bought the STS 3 years ago (05) model I ASSumed all gps where the same. Never thought about test driving a GPS. Sure learned my lesson there!!! If they are charging a premium for the GPS it should be worth the extra money.

Joe V
10-05-10, 12:25 AM
Okay, I may have found out whay I was having so many problems. There was a way point active. However, I deleted them all last week! Somehow there was still one there. Anyway, I deleted them again, and told the NAV to take me home and it actually agreed with my Magellan portable all the way home! It is too early to tell, but I at least have some hope. Now I am waiting to get my rim back as I somehow bent it but I don't remember hitting a pot hole!

Now that there is some hope for NAV, I would like to buy the second to the latest version of MAP disk. Is that the 08 version? What is the part number? I am hoping to get it for maybe $75? Also, I may want to try and update my system firmware. Does anyone know where I can get the update disk so I don't have to pay a dealer over $250!!!

dkozloski
10-05-10, 12:44 AM
The STS navigation system will send you on all kinds of strange detours unless you select the proper preference for road types. It's the same old story; RTFM. You may have inadvertantly directed the system to keep you off of major roads or maybe freeways. I realize that reading the manual is admitting defeat but sometimes there is no other way to get from point A to point B.

ddgm
10-05-10, 08:30 AM
There is a Cadillac technicion on here who is up on this topic, he goes by ewill3rd and I think he monitors this group. I stand to be corrected but I think you need a Tech II to install the firmware update. Anyways he will know for sure, I think there is also a way you can check if you have the update already. There is a diagnostic mode that you can get into, do a search in this forum for that. Best bet is ewill3rd, according to his profile he is in Alexandria, VA

Doug

malatu
10-05-10, 10:57 AM
The STS navigation system will send you on all kinds of strange detours unless you select the proper preference for road types. It's the same old story; RTFM. You may have inadvertantly directed the system to keep you off of major roads or maybe freeways. I realize that reading the manual is admitting defeat but sometimes there is no other way to get from point A to point B.

I concur with with bear. I adjusted settings on my nav and accidentally programmed it to keep me off major highways. What a pain in the but. This happened on a long trip out of state. What a pain in the butt. Over all, I am satisfied with my the nav in my 2006 sts.

stevenriz
10-05-10, 11:11 AM
Maybe you were so close to the corner that it thought you were already going right and that was the only way to go. If you were a few yards before the light it may have calculated you go left. It does have its quirks but it isn't that bad. I think I've read in the past that GPS accuracy is dependent on many factors and can be accurate from .01 meters to as much as 15 meters or something like that. So if the satelite thought you were already driving right on that street instead of left where your house is, the safest route is a couple miles out of the way assuming there is no uturn along that route. A 3 point turn in someone's driveway is not considered a safe u-turn. just my $0.02 :)

ddavis75007
10-05-10, 12:18 PM
No [firmware/software] disc update for 2005 STS nav, but there is one for the 2009 STS - there still might be a dealer programming update though for the 2005... check w/ your local dealerships
Hi,

Could you tell me the version numbers for the update for the 2009 STS? I just had the NAV unit replaced, bad map DVD reader. I noticed that the firmware on the replacement unit was later than the original NAV unit. Maybe they updated the firmware when they did the replacement. They didn't say. If I knew the updated version numbers, I could check and see if there is any need to start a firmware update battle with my dealership.

Thanks,
Doug Davis

RippyPartsDept
10-05-10, 04:17 PM
firmware was probably upgraded at the Electronic Service Center where your radio was sent to the dealer from... either that or by the manufacturer themselves (Denso i believe)

Denso units are not remanufactured in the US - they are sent back to Denso in japan (and if you have any discs locked in your unit, or forgotten in the unit they will not be returned - discs left in other radios will be returned ... eventually)

ewill3rd
10-08-10, 08:51 AM
For '05 there were 2 versions of the firmware update.
It is a 2 disc set and it requires the use of a Tech 2 to install the software.
It was to address bluetooth and some other issues, it won't improve the system's operation.

loman
10-08-10, 12:58 PM
Ha Ha , i thought it was just me too . I rarely used the nav and the voice commands were interesting to say the least. I recently sold my 2006 beacause of engine issues , but i got to tell you , my new car nav and voice activation is incredible. I never have to take my hands off the wheel for nav , phone or radio . I havent even opened the manual either, everything is so intuitive. I still miss my caddy as you can see , i still lurk on these boards. But i am impressed with the new Maxima , no regrets. Hope you get settled with your new ride and enjoy it. It has the prestige factor going for it big time.

Brianjetski
10-12-10, 04:01 PM
Didn't GM offer 2 free upgrades to the DVD map to new purchasers? I swear I saw that somewhere. Is it possible to find a poi, say a restaurant without knowing the name or address of the restaurant? My $150 garmin will find a restaurant that is close to my location, I just can't figure out how to get the $2000 factory nav to do it...

Thanks in advance

ewill3rd
10-12-10, 08:42 PM
GM did have a program that offered free updates to new car purchasers but it only lasted for 2 years. I can't remember the years in question but I do know that program is long gone.

EChas3
10-12-10, 09:56 PM
Maps have nothing to do with Firmware levels. You can sometimes talk GM Nav Disk out of a disk set for a 2006 or 2007 STS if you have a good VIN. At this point, they might send you an obsolete set. Even the newest is still obsolete.

How do the Vette guys take it? (They're the same Denso disks.)

They aren't anywhere long enough to care!

RippyPartsDept
10-12-10, 10:42 PM
i think it was for 2006 and 2007 model years... 2 free disc updates travel with the vehicle (like the warranty) - but the time to redeem them is way past
there's a thread around here where people were reporting being able to get their last update disc even after the two years was past so if you have a 2006 or 2007 with NAV it couldn't hurt to call the nav disc center with your VIN and ask nicely for a free update

ewill3rd
10-13-10, 08:16 AM
As stated, to avoid confusion, the firmware update is not in any way shape or form related to the DVD that the system uses to function.

Brianjetski
10-13-10, 02:47 PM
Did they even have 2 upgrades during the warranty period?

Is it possible to find a poi, say a restaurant without knowing the name or address of the restaurant? My $150 garmin will find a restaurant that is close to my location, I just can't figure out how to get the $2000 factory nav to do it...

ewill3rd
10-13-10, 08:37 PM
The database is probably more up to date in the Garmin, that would be why you would want to purchase an updated nav disc.

EChas3
10-13-10, 08:43 PM
The separate Nav manual foir 2006 directs the owner to the dealer for map updates. That's wrong. I think my wife's 2007 Nav manual has it right; 2 free map updates from GMNAVDISK.

The sticker & GM Info sheet state 2 free upgrades. They actually honored it as recently as last Spring on a 2007. You did have to be persistent.

RippyPartsDept
10-13-10, 09:55 PM
around 2006-2007 was when GM switched to the Global NavDisc Center - dealers pay the same price as the public to buy discs.

Firmware discs are available to dealers for free usually (the first one only since they can be used multiple times).

http://gmnavdisc.com or 877-NAV-DISC to contact the NavDisc center - if you mess up the voice prompts when calling as I have many times (their voice recognition is very touch to background noise) you will get GM cust. svc. - they can then put you back straight to the NavDisc center.

ddavis75007
10-14-10, 10:41 AM
Did they even have 2 upgrades during the warranty period?

Is it possible to find a poi, say a restaurant without knowing the name or address of the restaurant? My $150 garmin will find a restaurant that is close to my location, I just can't figure out how to get the $2000 factory nav to do it...

You can touch the map and select POI to have have all kinds of poi catagories displayed on the map.

Brianjetski
10-14-10, 03:08 PM
You can touch the map and select POI to have have all kinds of poi catagories displayed on the map.

I guess I knew that, but what I like about the portable units, is you can actually search generically for restaurants,shopping, etc and it will list them.

ddavis75007
10-14-10, 03:32 PM
I guess I knew that, but what I like about the portable units, is you can actually search generically for restaurants,shopping, etc and it will list them.

I did a little checking earlier. After you select a catagory to display on the map, press the map again, press POI and then press "Local POIs'. It will display a list of all of the whatever falls in the catagories you've selected by distance.