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Old 31-05-2010, 16:05   #1
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Converting from Nobeltec to Coastal Explorer

I am just wondering about converting from Nobeltec VNS to Coastal Explorer.

If one makes the switch:
1. Will the routes from Nobeltec be useable in
Coastal Explorer?
2. Will
Coastal Explorer run the Nobeltec Passport Charts or the Nobeltec Max Pro charts?

Also, I tur
ned bold on in the first line above, and I can't get it to turn off. Any help available on this subject too? Selecting the text and clicking the bold button does not do it as in other applications.
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Old 31-05-2010, 16:16   #2
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Make the switch - best thing I ever did. The routes will be useable if you export them from Nobeltec in a portable format. No luck with the charts - they are tied to Nobeltec and one of the ways that company keeps you in their clutches. However, unlike Nobeltec, Coastal Explorer will let you use the FREE raster and vector charts for the entire US and US territories. So if you are in the US, Puerto Rico, USVI or Guam there are no problems with charts.

I am so happy to be free from Nobeltec and their business practices...

Can't help you with the bold type problem.

Mark
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Old 31-05-2010, 16:58   #3
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I imported the routes, marks, waypoints with no problem, using the export first then import colemj described. I was particularly concerned about that in the beginning-my computer crashed in La Paz, and I had to buy a new one with Vista, which VNS didn't support (yet) along with CE, have it all shipped home and picked up and carried back to La Paz so support the Baja Bash. But I had a backup computer still working (sort of) with VNS that allowed me to do the export, which worked fine as an import to CE.
The US vector and raster chart management by CE is particularly easy to use. You just select the regions you want, and CE downloads and maintains the latest editions on demand. Also salvaged the Mexico Softcharts and a few odd Maptech charts I was using with VNS with no problems. Unfortunately, my Passport charts were history in CE-Even the VNS upgrade that eliminated the US vector charts would have required a (paid) upgrade to keep them working-the old Folio 6 was not included in the free one. Thus VNS 9.2.2218 is an heirloom.
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Old 01-06-2010, 03:09   #4
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Excuse me for being nosy here but why do you want to move from Nobeltec VNS to Coastal Explorer? By which I mean I am sure you have good reason – just wondering what it is.
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Old 01-06-2010, 06:52   #5
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Some reasons I have switched:
1) Early (free) compatibility with Vista, then Windows 7, expected for W8
2) Users group, beta testing, forum for issue resolution
3) Compatibility with free US vector charts
4) Free upgrades
5) Automatic updates for free US charts, both vector and raster
6) Online free maintenance of guidebooks, Active Captain, other cruising support
7) Supports importing of the VNS database
8) All the usual navigation features supported
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Old 01-06-2010, 07:17   #6
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Broomfondle,

I am not sure that I do want switch. I have read some very positive Coastal Explorer reports here, and I basically am quite satisfied with VNS except for certain aspects of the transition to VNS 10.

Nobeltec has me currently unable to see raster charts that I have used with VNS 9 and earlier. At the same time over the past two years Nobeltec has delivered VNS 10 vector charts with some quite serious flaws in them. Issues like areas with soundings missing altogether, and land shown in positions that are actually water that are nearly a mile off. These errors are not in unexplored areas. They are in highly populated and well-travelled US northwest and Canadian SE waters.

To their credit Nobeltec has provided a means of reporting such errors via their web site, but at least one such error which I have reported is still in the update (#23) that I installed a year later.

It would be less bothersome if I could still click on the raster button to look at my Passport raster charts when encountering such an issue.to verify what is true. For US waters I have achieved this by installing the NOAA raster charts. But that does not work in Canada. I think I can buy more Canadian raster charts form Nobeltec, but I have already paid them for the Passport charts. Besides I suspect that the new raster charts could have the same errors that are in their new vector charts.

Nobeltec have been through several major ownership/management/policy changes recently. It is not totally clear to me if they are going to be the best option, or if their management/plocies will cause problems for me. After about 1.5 decades with them, I am taking a look at the other options in case they go the route of cutting me off from access to stuff that I have purchased from them as a means of generating more frequent purchasing of new things. Especially when the new stuff has errors that cause me to lose confidence in it, and makes me expend a lot of energy to correct the errors. I think that they clearly have the ability to continue to be the best option if they choose to supply what works best for their customers.
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Old 01-06-2010, 07:36   #7
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Nobeltec, from what I can see on the internet, supports Explorer Chartbook data (I am interested in the Bahamas). Can Coastal Explorer do the same? What about other software, such as Fugawi?
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Old 01-06-2010, 07:50   #8
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I'd be concerned that if you go further offshore will Coastal Cruiser support offshore charts? It took me a long time to learn MaxSea/Nobeltec Admiral/Transis and a couple other, now extinct, nav programs. I'm fairly sure MaxSea supports S57 charts (although you've got to buy the "converted" disk from MaxSea).

If you're sure you're going to stay within the S57 region of charts then Coastal Cruiser may be a good choice. However, I think that choosing a nav program because a few charts are free is not something I consider a plus.

I don't want to learn another. What I want is a nav program that'll work with almost any chart vendor so that I can choose the database that fits my requirements, not lock me into a vendor specific scheme. That's why I'm pleased to see other programs being developed that do just that.
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Old 01-06-2010, 07:58   #9
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CE Guidebook Support

Current guides supported by CE are shown in the attachment. You can ask about the specific ones you are interested in at their website forum, Forum - .
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Old 01-06-2010, 08:05   #10
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CE says about chart support
"Electronic Chart Manufacturers

Coastal Explorer can use charts and maps from these agencies and manufacturers: ChartWorld ChartWorld offers both official S-57 ENC from hydrographic agencies around the world and Navionics S-57 which gives Coastal Explorer users access to the world's largest private collection of nautical charts.
NOAA ENCŪ These vector charts are available for free and cover much of the US coast.
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Inland ENC These vector charts are available for free and cover major U.S. rivers.
Canadian Hydrographic Service CHS creates the official nautical charts for Canada. Both raster and vector charts are available and both formats work great with Coastal Explorer.
U.S. Geological Survey The USGS produces "DRG" topographic maps as well as "DOQ" photo charts the the GeoTIFF format which may be used
with Coastal Explorer."
They also support S63 charts. And my NOS/GEO Softcharts of Mexico.
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Old 01-06-2010, 18:06   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by capt_douglas View Post
I don't want to learn another. What I want is a nav program that'll work with almost any chart vendor so that I can choose the database that fits my requirements, not lock me into a vendor specific scheme. That's why I'm pleased to see other programs being developed that do just that.
It's a great idea - however I have a feeling as time goes one there will be less interoperability between chart vendors and products, not more. Good example is current MaxSea which went with their own chart format. This provides them a good platform for a lot of very cool optimizations, but it is very doubtful they would be interested in sharing their chart data with anyone else.

Same goes for Navionics (they don't seem to want to interoperate with new products, though existing products are clearly still supported).

This was always the case for CMap - their agreement is such that if you build a product that uses CMap data, you can't use any other chart sources (free or commercial) in the same product.
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Old 01-06-2010, 18:36   #12
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Good points brak; that's why I'm still on MaxSea 12.5. It doesn't have all the bells and whistles of the latest version or the rewrite speed; but it does read about anything I can think of. Sometimes newer isn't better - or cheaper
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Old 08-06-2010, 04:02   #13
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Official chart data really only comes from the national hydrographic offices. This is the source for most proprietary formats. Where the official vector data uses an encryption scheme then the standard is S63. Permits issued under this scheme allow the mariner to decode the charts they have paid for however the permit generation scheme includes a manufacturer code. This artificially creates vendor lock-in. If you buy some S63 chart permits that work with a particular navigation system then you will not be able to use the same permits to view the same charts with the navigation system from another manufacturer.
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