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Old 17-06-2013, 09:36   #16
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Re: Cheap and Cheerful Fixed Mount GPS/Plotter

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Why would I want to mess around with an expensive, exposed, marine grade unit when the tablet or laptop is within arms reach, clear of the weather and shaded?
You can get low cost chart plotters for $280-300, thats expensive!!. it will work in sunlight and readable in teh rain, It will directly connect to NMEA i/fs with no further costs. It can not be used to phone home though.

dave
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Old 17-06-2013, 09:45   #17
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Re: Cheap and Cheerful Fixed Mount GPS/Plotter

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Its going to be mounted at the helm, and will be exposed to a lot of sunlight, with the occasional spit of rain

How is the position accuracy with a tab/puck setup? I know the built in Gps on my phone is fine when I have full service, but it certainly isn't anything i'd put much faith in.

I guess I prefer the idea of something that's a purpose built for the task. My experience with smart phones and computers various is that they'll always pick the worst time to freeze up or need an update. The trusty old furuno GPS where I work, on the other hand, has never once missed a beat.
We've used a laptop with GPS puck for the last 6 yrs and 1 1/2 times around the great loop (8000+ miles). When we go into a slip, it typically shows us in the correct slip if you zoom in.

We recently picked up the tablet and it has a built in GPS (not a simulator using cell tower signals) and so far it seems to show similar accuracy. The nice thing is we don't have to mess around with the cables as it has much longer battery life than the laptop and the GPS is integral.

Again probably not the best choice for an exposed location but if you are worried about freezing up, set it aside as a dedicated relatively cheap backup. Most problems come from virus and malware in my experience. Then again, we have my work laptop, personal laptop, tablet, a automotive GPS, 2 phones with GPS and an old hand held GPS on board, so we aren't too worried about the GPS reciever failing as we have multiple backups.
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Old 17-06-2013, 10:02   #18
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Re: Cheap and Cheerful Fixed Mount GPS/Plotter

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Originally Posted by goboatingnow View Post
You can get low cost chart plotters for $280-300, thats expensive!!. it will work in sunlight and readable in teh rain, It will directly connect to NMEA i/fs with no further costs. It can not be used to phone home though.

dave
Some plotters appear cheap but they get you on the charts. Phone/tablet charts are 1/10th the price..
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Old 18-06-2013, 12:50   #19
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Re: Cheap and Cheerful Fixed Mount GPS/Plotter

really cheap and often cheerful - that's me

Our current setup in our small boat is:
- a used Lowrance Globalnav handheld ($5 )on an arm, sticking out of the companionway, and
- a netbook with a GPS USB fob ($225 + $30) running OpenCpn

well, you said you wanted "cheap"
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Old 19-06-2013, 04:26   #20
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Re: Cheap and Cheerful Fixed Mount GPS/Plotter

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Try reading a Tab or iPad in any significant direct sunlight, compare with Garmin,

Dave
I am using my Galaxy 10.1 in the Philippines, tropical sun and I am loving it. While it is not the primary navigator, I used it to return to a dicey, murkey inlet with lots of glare on the water and followed my trck without incident.
BTW, using Ocpn on a mini itx computer as primary but it is at the chart table,
Joe
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Old 19-06-2013, 04:34   #21
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Re: Cheap and Cheerful Fixed Mount GPS/Plotter

Well as luck would have it, the boat i'm buying IS coming with the GPS. The PO was planning to take it with him, but had a change of heart. It's an ancient Garmin GPS 120, and since the price is right, and I'll have a plenty of things to spend money on, I'll just run that until I need to change it. Thanks for all the input everybody!
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Old 21-06-2013, 21:45   #22
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GoBoatingNow.......I too have had my trusty 276C for some time. Got there last update before their discontinuing it. Most enjoyable and unit of the several I have. Garmin continues to grow and improve.

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Old 21-06-2013, 22:00   #23
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Re: Cheap and Cheerful Fixed Mount GPS/Plotter

New tabs are fully sunlight readable, my Nexus 7 is MUCH easier to read than my Garmin and Delorme GPSs in dirrect sunlight. And the "location" is exactly the same as a million dollar chart plotter. Just to clear up those points.

All other points are true...Tab isn't water or impact proof/resistant without a case. But a plotter has no other use, is more $, and my old one's would cost more to update than brand new software on a tab.
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Old 24-06-2013, 05:57   #24
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Re: Cheap and Cheerful Fixed Mount GPS/Plotter

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Originally Posted by Dave0549jv View Post
I'm looking for something that's a dedicated, check
fixed mount, check
GPS or chart plotter.
Simplicity and user friendliness are top concerns. check

I don't need a fancy color 57" touch screen. check

I don't want anything that's PC Based or that requires any kind of networking, check

as Momma always said 'networking is the devil.' I don't plan on straying too far from the NY state canals or the great lakes, so I don't need the entire Earth's surface in charts. check

I'll probably end up buying something on the used market, but being that there are so many hundreds of millions of choices, I thought I might pick your brains and see if there are any clear winners out there. Ideally, I'd like to spend less than 200 bucks, but that's flexible. check

So CF, any thoughts?
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Old 26-06-2013, 03:13   #25
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Re: Cheap and Cheerful Fixed Mount GPS/Plotter

Haha, my search is complete! thank you!
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Old 26-06-2013, 04:53   #26
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Re: Cheap and Cheerful Fixed Mount GPS/Plotter

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Why would you mount your only chartplotter inside, Thats so a throwback to paper charts usage. Typically you con from outside, hence put the gear there ?

Dave
It depends on how you sail.

If you do real navigation -- as opposed to just pointing to a spot on the chart and pressing "go to cursor" -- then you will really want to have a plotter at the nav table.

You need a plotter at the helm for pilotage. Ideally one really needs both.

I recently did a couple of shortish cruises without a plotter at the helm -- as my new Zeus for the helm position had been held up in Jersey customs.


It was a really interesting throwback to old ways of working. Thoroughly think through your passage and set up waypoints. Program in the waypoints and then navigate to them using the other instruments (steering compass screen on a Triton; old-fashioned GPS screen on a Triton). Much like the way we all used to navigate with paper charts and a plain GPS. It was comfortable and nice, but I did have a (brief) moment of terror entering Poole Harbor on a moonless night when the IPad I was using for harbor pilotage went dead.
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Old 26-06-2013, 06:32   #27
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Re: Cheap and Cheerful Fixed Mount GPS/Plotter

I have never understood why people answer questions about the plotter to buy, by talking about the manufacturer of the plotter.

The first question you need to answer, is what chart system do you plan to use, and what is the coverage.

For example, when I bought my boat it had Raymarine E display. That requires Navionics. I want to visit Easter Island one day, but Navionics charts do not cover that area of the ocean (good old CM93!!!!!!!)

Once you have chosen the chart type, you will be able to look up the list of applicable plotters, and do a comparison.
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Old 07-08-2013, 09:08   #28
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Originally Posted by Talbot
I have never understood why people answer questions about the plotter to buy, by talking about the manufacturer of the plotter.

The first question you need to answer, is what chart system do you plan to use, and what is the coverage.

For example, when I bought my boat it had Raymarine E display. That requires Navionics. I want to visit Easter Island one day, but Navionics charts do not cover that area of the ocean (good old CM93!!!!!!!)

Once you have chosen the chart type, you will be able to look up the list of applicable plotters, and do a comparison.
This is already not always true. Navico plotters now take both CMap and Navionics charts so you have a choice.
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