This is my 5th GPS (4 Magellan's and one Garmin, plus the ones in rentals and built-into cars) and I have to say they've gotten close to perfect for what it is. I was going to give up on Magellan after my last long term one (Maestro 4040). I just bought a Magellan RoadMate 1475T and found it an improvement over the 4040 but it took forever to start-up and get a signal; plus a number of idiotic things they've done to make the displays harder to navigate and the fact the traffic feature never told me about a slowdown until I was in it.
I saw the 1700 and thought I'd take a chance because I've always wanted a bigger screen to show surrounding streets. I am so glad I sent the 1475T back, this unit is a huge improvement over the 1475T! The screen is fantastic and supports swipe movements over the map so you can look around, then return to where you actually are, or are going.
I didn't know about the AV video input when I bought it, but what a bonus! I just plug in my 3.5mm AV cable (I got it at the Apple Store) and the display switches to video (the aspect ratio is stretched, but what-the-heck). It's going to be great to use on long trips. I would have bought it for this feature alone.
It doesn't have Bluetooth (I could never get Magellan Bluetooth to work properly with my iPhones, Magellan seems to be Windows centric) or any other GPS add-ons that never seemed to work properly. I don't know if the 1475T or the 1700 came first, but the 1700 has a lot of the 'good' features that older Magellan's had, ones that seem to be back-step improvements on the 1475T. The spoken voice on the 1700 is the good old one and the 1475T had a distorted hard to understand voice that I assume is new. The 1700 has the old, easier to use, screens and the 1475T has additional options like the "Local Info" icon that leads to more confusing options that don't really tell you anything. Also the "Save" on the present location didn't work on the 1475T, but it works great on the 1700. It's a feature I use all the time, if you're someplace you want to quickly remember, just hit a couple of buttons and it's saved and named.
I've used the 1700 for over a week and it really works well, locks on to the GPS signal faster than any GPS I've had, literally within seconds of turning on the unit. With the big screen it's much faster for me to enter info and navigate. Buttons are HUGE (and pretty)! The sound is great and the 3D maps are better than the 1475T (probably because of the larger screen). You can easily add more destinations for multi-stop trips and sort them. It's also much easier to add an address than the older Magellan's and their "Smart Cities" is a much needed improvement that works. The POI's also appear a lot faster than the the older models and are easier to add to the address book. There are also two pages of favorites buttons that are easy to add and easy to use.
Overall I love this unit, I'll probably keep this one for a long time. Before I could hardly wait to upgrade out of frustration.
The downside: it definitely needs a faster processor. Maybe the large screen takes more of the processor, but there can be a lag when entering using the keyboard touch screen. It doesn't affect actual navigation, it's only when using the display to enter things.
It's big! I would follow another reviewer's advice and make a cardboard cutout first and see if you have the space. I just barely do, my window really slopes and it's a close fit. One of the big deficiencies for me is the window mount. It's the worst Magellan mount I've had. In the past they've been really great, the 4040 had a fantastic mount, but the one for the 1700 is really too small, they must and known this in the product trials. Even if you only used it for Motor Homes or Trucks, I don't see how this mount could move it far enough from the window to get it off of its cradle. It uses a ball joint that can't be tightened enough to keep it from jiggling. I'm going to have to buy the optional extended mount, but Magellan should have included the same mount they used for the 4040. The mount is the biggest disappointment of this purchase.
The POI's are as bad as they always are. Since I've never seen any brand that has accurate ones, I think they should give up trying to include them. Only half of my local Post Offices are listed, none of my favorite coffee shops appear (but all the Starbucks are there correctly) and it lists businesses that closed down years ago. If you want POI's, I think you have to buy a smart phone and look them up when you need them and enter addresses. The gas stations and hotels seems to be accurate and on a trip would be useful until they get outdated as well. Even Google Maps doesn't have things correct, so I guess it's not unexpected that a unit that was manufactured months ago isn't right either.
Also, all the Magellan's I've had shows you slightly behind where you actually are. Since it's always been that way, through many models, and they've never changed it, I have to assume they do it on purpose. This can be really frustrating when roads are really close to each other and you're not sure if you're turning down the right one. If you're stopped at an intersection, it shows you yards back. I think they should add an option that would move every reading 10 yards forward on the map. However, the turn chime is correct and it's what I use more than the screen. If it chimes, I know the next turn is it. The close-up feature they've added works well, it zooms in on a turn and puts a huge arrow on the map, this helps.
Overall, this is the best GPS I've ever had and would buy it again in a second. It does have room for improvement, but has all the features I really count on without the optional stuff that never seems to work. And the display is FANTASTIC!
For those that are having problems using the AV input, you have to have the correct cable. Three times Radio Shack tried to sell me the wrong cable, one made for audio. Only the Apple Store had the correct one and knew what I was talking about. Magellan should have one on their accessories online store! You have to plug the cable in after the 1700 is running, if you start the 1700 with the cable attached, it ignores the AV and goes to the GPS. Just plug the AV cable in and the 1700 automatically switches to AV mode. You can access the volume controls by taping on the screen. NONE of this is documented anywhere in the instruction manual or online. It's a great feature that they seem to be ignoring, maybe it's liability or something else.
Please Magellan, use the 1700 as your basis for future models and improve the windshield mount.