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Geo7x vs TDC 650

  • 1.  Geo7x vs TDC 650

    Posted 09-15-2023 07:14

    I just wanted to get peoples thoughts on the TDC 650.  My general thoughts our that it is less superior than the Geo7x.  I am very disappointed in the accuracy of the 650 in tree cover and the ability to get good reception.  The Geo7x had the floodlight technology, and I am not sure why they wouldn't make the 650 with it.  I thought it worked great under canopy and it stinks that it had to be on a Windows platform and it is getting phased out.  We are seeing major issues with the accuracy of our data and our extremely unhappy with purchasing the units at this point.  The 650 is fine and doing what it is supposed to do, it is just really disappointing that it doesn't work as well or better than the Geo7x under tree canopy....

    Anyone have similar results that has used both regularly?  Also, are there any other units on the market similar to these?


    Wayne Randall

  • 2.  RE: Geo7x vs TDC 650

    Posted 09-17-2023 16:47

    We have 15 Geo 7x handhelds with the external lasers mounted under the receiver and have used Trimble units for 20+ years. We have always loved the accuracy, simplicity and versatility the 7x offers. For a few years now, we keep getting encouraged to jump in and replace what we have. We are concerned with buying the new units that are recommended because of the need of multiple components that need to be taken into the field instead of a single device and now we see the ability to collect accurate points in canopy may be an issue. 

    Our team of data collectors use on a regular bases the range finders to collect locations and store attributes on many features in our line of work. Some are on sidewalks collecting points on features that are hard to access or just not safe to stand over or access. Some data collectors are in boats collecting points on features on land. Some of our collectors even collect data on estimates of how tall a trees are by using the laser. When it comes to collecting consistently accurate points, the 7x is perfect for that even with the tree canopy using the floodlight technology. You cannot beat the ruggedness of the 7x. We do not get them wet. I am not sure how well they will stand up to that but we have had them dropped on asphalt and still work fine.

    We are hoping soon that a company can offer a unit that is a true all in one and comparable with the 7x (including a laser that is integrated or mounted under the receiver) on accuracy and performance level. It is clear to me there is a need still for a unit that can perform and compete with the Geo 7x handheld.

    I wonder if the DA2 has issues collecting as accurate and consistent positions as the 7x under canopy?

    David Hames

  • 3.  RE: Geo7x vs TDC 650

    Posted 09-18-2023 04:30

    Thanks for posting your message regarding the 7x.  The DA2 works great and doesn't have issues like the 650.  The problem with that is you have to connect a battery and connect to a device.  It is not the all in one like the 7x and 650.  

    Wayne Randall

  • 4.  RE: Geo7x vs TDC 650

    Posted 09-18-2023 05:12

    I see what you are saying Wayne. We agree, 100%. I am curious about the DA2 incase they make these 7xs inoperable. We are really hoping someone comes out with a device that is truly competitive with the 7x very soon. If we have to buy a device like a 650, we would rather just bring our cell phones and not buy the 650s because we can still utilize a rangefinder, even though it is mounted to a pole and we are less invested with Trimble. We would be more willing to consider the 650s if they have a laser that is internal or mounted external like the 7x.

    David Hames

  • 5.  RE: Geo7x vs TDC 650

    Posted 09-19-2023 06:08

    Hi David,

    You can integrate an external rangefinder with the TerraFlex software in combination with a DA2 who uses the ProPoint technology from the high end model R12i.

    Kind regards,

    Denis Snauwaert

    Application Engineer AllTerra-BeLux

    Denis Snauwaert

  • 6.  RE: Geo7x vs TDC 650

    Posted 12-17-2023 10:33
    Edited by Joel Cusick 12-17-2023 10:39


    What is your software workflow.   Because the TDC650 is android based, its not compatible with TerraSync.   The Geo7x, based on WM can run TerraFlex or Arcpad, but not Access/or TerraFlex/ESRI mobile software.

    As for yield, precision and accuracy, no comparison between the devices Chipset and burnt in FW (e.g. Floodlight on geo7x), nor the integration factor (rangefinder).  Combine the Geo7x with differential correction (in deprecated PFO) or Positions (ArcMap only), there is no question that user community is on its own. 

    USFS has some limited testing between Catalyst, TDC600 and Geo7x, confirming the errors on the TDC600 being much higher under canopy than the other two.Harder to tease out the Geo7x vs Catalyst though.     USFS has done a wonderful job assisting the user community.  Huge shoutout to the agency with these non biased evaluations. 

    Joel Cusick

  • 7.  RE: Geo7x vs TDC 650

    Posted 01-18-2024 01:58

    I have 650 and DA2 , I was never sure how much battery power was left in the DA2 , I bought a cable that goes from it to the 650, it is now powered by the 560 and I can see battery level on 650  , it lasts most of the day. I had a Geo 6000 which was better in most ways , except for the camera. TDC does not work well in wet weather

    David Donlon

  • 8.  RE: Geo7x vs TDC 650

    Posted 01-12-2024 08:59

    We have been using the Geo 7x for several years with ESRI ArcPad and have had no issues getting the submeter accuracy we needed in heavy canopy.  We purchased a TDC 650 early summer of 2023 and have had continuous issues with both the SBAS accuracy and even when using the post processing, we still cannot get the accuracy down to submeter most of the time.  

    We have had several discussions with our Trimble rep and tried to figure out the best answers.  I just think the built in antenna is not as good as the GEO 7x.  If we rent a unit from our local Trimble dealer, they give us an older Geo 7x.  The problem is that they have to download the data for us because we can't connect it to a 64x windows computer. 

    Michael Bertotti

  • 9.  RE: Geo7x vs TDC 650

    Posted 01-12-2024 11:48

    If you are interested in floodlight tech and tree coverage, check out the new R580. Pole mounted, but does work with any iOS/Android (BYOD). Just food for thought... same long lasting batteries as the R-series. 



    Kara O'Neill

  • 10.  RE: Geo7x vs TDC 650

    Posted 01-12-2024 12:50

    It would make sense that with so many Geo7x handhelds out there which generate SSF Trimble proprietery format that Trimble provides a solution for GIS workflows, which I'm guessing by the poster is using ESRI software.    The reply mentions they cannot use PFO - thats happened all around the world.    What could be a solution to many of us who don't have the money for a R580 and the need to use ACCESS (a surveyor solution plusTBC) or Terra Office (blocked by many in the federal service) is a solution for an add-in with ArcGIS Pro to ingest SSF data at a minimum, and ideally to differentially correct SSF data from within Pro.    

    Another post I have in Mapping and GIS community highlights this issue.

    Joel Cusick
    GIS Specialist
    Region 11 - Alaska Regional Office
    240 W. Fifth Ave. Anchorage, AK 99501-2327
    cell:907 280-9724  wk:907 644-3549 
    Alaska Region GIS Resources:
    Intranet Site: (please note updated link as of 03/22/2023)

  • 11.  RE: Geo7x vs TDC 650

    Posted 01-14-2024 12:52

    Hi Michael

    In case you haven't seen it, there's a Trimble Support Note here (dated August 2020) which describes how to get Windows Mobile Device Center working on Windows 10.  That may allow you to download your own data.

    I last followed the procedure given in this Support Note in May 2022 on a Dell with Windows 11 and a Geo 7x connected without difficulty. 

    At about the same time, even after following the Support Note steps on a Win10 TSC7, WMDC would not connect to the Geo until I turned off "Enable Advanced network functionality".  I think there's always been some randomness about whether advanced functionality should be on or off.

    Norman Smart