Best Nikon DSLR GPS


It has been a while since I’ve looked at GPS units for my Nikon DSLRs and yes it’s sad that in 2015 we still have to look at external solutions. However, that is the current state of affairs and the good news is that the prices have come down and the units continue to get better. Recently I was debating going with a NEW Nikon D750 vs a D810. When I was leaning strongly towards the D750 I tested my existing GPS unit (the one on my Nikon D600) and realized that since the GPS port was in a higher spot on the body that my Dawn di-GPS Eco model just wouldn’t work.


It’s a shame because I really like the flush to the body design of the di-GPS Eco models. I reached out to Dawn Tech to see if there was one on the horizon for the D750 and they informed me that they were working on something, but it wasn’t ready yet. In the mean time I got the UPDATED Mini3 MTK S5. I had worked with the older model in the past and this newer one now includes the “Last Position Memory” function, which is great for those times when you go inside and keep shooting. More importantly it has an even lower power consumption (19mA, less than 1/3 of the current consumption of Nikon’s own GP-1). While it doesn’t have the flush to the body design that I like so much in the di-GPS Eco, it’s very lightweight and can either sit in the hot shoe or attach to the camera strap.


I ultimately decided on and bought the Nikon D810. So this means that I get to use the Eco ProFessional M model. This one has the same “flush” design that I like and it even has the important pass through terminal port so that I can use my cable release or other accessories.


The Bottom Line

Nikon has had GPS support built-in to their DSLRs for years, but still refuses to build the actual GPS receiver in to their DSLR bodies or battery grips.


I love geotagging my photos as I take them. I use the Maps module in Lightroom quite a bit for my landscape and travel photos. It’s also easier to answer that “where did you take that shot” question as the galleries on my website also take advantage of this data allowing visitors to see exactly where each shot was taken. Sure there are many solutions and even iPhone apps like this one, but the most accurate and convenient way is to have the GPS data logged right into the metadata of each shot as you take them. While I applaud Nikon for having direct GPS support right in the menu of their DSLRs, it’s a shame that in 2015 we still have to buy “EXTERNAL” modules. As I’ve said many times I’d love to see this either built right in or at least built into an “optional” battery grip. Until that happens The GPS units from Dawn are your best bet.

Using the Maps module I can easily see exactly where shots were taken and even copy to GPS data to images that were taken with other cameras that didn’t have GPS.



10 Replies to “Best Nikon DSLR GPS”

  1. As much as I would like to have the Eco Pro M for my D810. I will have to pass. Looking at a new piece of fast glass and that put’s me that much closer.

  2. Great review Terry. I remember when you reviewed this and the Solmeta a year or so ago. Based on your review I bought both of these but I have to admit I love the ECO Pro better because of it’s low profile and cost. In terms of customer service I had the older version of the ECO Pro which did not have the lock nut and I contacted di_GPS asking if they had a migration or upgrade policy of if I could buy a lock nut. They did not sell the lock nut but sold me a brand new device for only 25 dollars. I sent in my old device and they sent me a new one. Great service, great device, and a great review. Thanks.

  3. Spent the past few hours looking for a way to connect a GP-1 and an MB-30 to a Nikon 10-pin. Came across the Solmeta unit but didn’t like the idea of the box hanging off the camera or on a strap. Had just about given up when I decided to read your latest blog posts. You can image how surprised and happy I was to read your post on the ECO Pro. I checked out their web site and see that it is from Hong Kong. Do you know if they have a US distributor? Thank you.

      1. Terry, thanks for the quick reply. One more question, is the price about $152 before shipping?

  4. thanks for the product review of gi-gps eco pro m. took 2 days to get here (tampa) from HK after the additional paid shipping option-great customer service. i feel like i’m in the 21st century. fun stuff to see location in Lightroom. looks a little easy to damage but i will take extra care not to smash or snag , thanks!

  5. Terry, Have you had any problems with a remote shutter cable not working with the GPS? I’m on my second unit and the cable release no longer functions when plugged into the GPS.

  6. You really want a GPS unit that has it’s own internal power like an AA battery. I tried one of those body flush mounted GPS units similar to the ones you describe. While it’s compact and convenient, it causes me a lot of problems. Firstly, if you set the camera to automatically shut down the GPS to save battery, then it takes one to five minutes to re-acquire so if you shoot right away it doesn’t work and either incorrectly geo-tags (sometimes the last position) or no geo-tagging at all. If you set the camera to leave the GPS unit on all the time for instant-on, then it runs down your camera battery (my Nikon D610 with EN-EL15 lasts about 3 hours so that you camera may be low battery or even dead when you want to shoot. Of course if you change the battery it takes another 5 minutes to re-acquire position. Annoying. There are a few GPS units out there with independent AA battery power to keep the GPS running continuously without draining the camera’s battery. I find that a AA Energizer or Duracell lasts for about 12 hours and correctly geo-tags whenever I take a shot. Hope this helps.

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