Garmin's Swiss Army Knife GPS

Say bonjour, guten tag and ciao to the Garmin Nuvi, a sat-nav with a bewildering array of features - including Bablefish-style translation. The Nuvi 3

Say bonjour, guten tag and ciao to the Garmin Nuvi, a sat-nav with a bewildering array of features - including Bablefish-style translation.

The Nuvi 300s and 350s are, without a doubt, the most multi-skilled portable navigation systems to land at Stuff towers. In addition to their day job of giving turn-by-turn motoring directions, the pair are capable of playing MP3s and Audible audio books, translating languages, displaying travel book info, photos and a world clock, and - take a breath - converting currencies.

The key difference between the double act is that the pricier 350 can also charge via the mains, convert text into speech to help you pronounce 'le gare' and fit the whole of Europe in its map memory. The 300 can only hold one of eight regional areas - such as the UK - at a time.

All the cool, non-GPS features are provided by the joy of SD card. The translation and travel guide, for instance, both come as optional extras on SD cards. Oxford University Press provides the translation into nine languages including French, German and Spanish, while Marco Polo - a Lonely Planet-alike - serves up the restaurant reviews and sightseeing info.

Pricing's yet to be announced on the two.

The entertainment side - music, photos and audio books - works by hooking a Nuvi up to a PC to drag and drop files over. The units support MP3s, Audible's DRM-ed audio books and bog-standard jpegs.

If Garmin's pedigree's anything to judge by, the Nuvis should also be good as sat-navs: the fact that they come with 3.5in touchscreens certainly bodes well for the ease of the interface.

This versatile duo go on sale before Christmas, with the Nuvi 300 at £380 and the 350 at £635.

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