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Old 08-04-2008, 14:50   #1
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Etrex serial data output

I have an Etrex venture, which has a serial RS232 interface. I got a cable with it, but when I plug it into my laptop, fire up SeaClear II, set COM1 to 4800 baud....

nuthin'.

yes, yes, I DID turn on the GPS!

When I look up the serial interface format screen on the etrex, the only option is "Garmin". I take that to mean that this thing is putting out serial data, but it's in some sort of Garmin proprietary format, and not NMEA 0183?

Yes? No?

Insights?

Next up is trying my old Garmin 38 which is supposed to put out NMEA 0183 ver. 1.5. I also just ordered a USB GPS receiver.
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Old 08-04-2008, 15:00   #2
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Alan, a USB GPS will work with nothing NMEA, you need a serial output to make that happen. Or, a laptop with USB port and software that is also happy with the USB port. Not everything is. When it is, USB can be simpler because there is no manual matching up of protocols to do. When it isn't--you're still stopped cold.

Garmin claims the Venture does RS232/NMEA 183 output, but most Garmins default (or worse, reset) to their own output protocol and you usually have to drill down in the menus and manually set them to NMEA output. That may be all you need to do.
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Old 08-04-2008, 16:27   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hellosailor View Post
Alan, a USB GPS will work with nothing NMEA, you need a serial output to make that happen. Or, a laptop with USB port and software that is also happy with the USB port. Not everything is. When it is, USB can be simpler because there is no manual matching up of protocols to do. When it isn't--you're still stopped cold.

Garmin claims the Venture does RS232/NMEA 183 output, but most Garmins default (or worse, reset) to their own output protocol and you usually have to drill down in the menus and manually set them to NMEA output. That may be all you need to do.
You're a genius. Exactly. I just hadn't clicked around enough. In fact, in the serial interface menu, there's an option for "NMEA in/out". I'll plug it in later and see if it puts my position on the chart.
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Old 08-04-2008, 16:39   #4
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"You're a genius."
Nah, I've just had too much fun with old Garmins and custom cables.[g]
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Old 08-04-2008, 18:39   #5
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I just plugged it all in and walked around outside. It took about four minutes to acquire satellites.... heck the laptop took longer than that to boot up. By the time it was up and I started SeaClearII, it was reporting positions on the map. *pop* Put me right exactly where I was, too....since the building I work in is actually on the nautical chart! I walked around a bit and it tracked me very nicely at 2.4 - 2.5 knots.

YAY. And thus opens up the world of electronic navigation to Yours Truly. I've been putting this off for years!

thanks again for the help!
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Old 08-04-2008, 19:15   #6
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You'll find that Seaclear works very well and the prices of the charts are right (free).
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