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Old 29-06-2014, 17:42   #1
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If I download the navionics do I need a chartplotter?

If I download the Navionics Gold app to my tablet do I really need to spend money on a chartplotter for my sailboat
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Old 29-06-2014, 18:05   #2
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Re: If I download the navionics do I need a chartplotter?

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If I download the Navionics Gold app to my tablet do I really need to spend money on a chartplotter for my sailboat
I have been cruising for the last ten years from Panama to Malaysia using computer based navigation. I got navionics for android a year ago and am very impressed by it. It has more detail and in Palawan was more accurate than cm93. Updating as compared to chartplotter is easy, internet is built in to the tablet. I have seen several chart plotter users have to repurchase their chart library because of format change.
My samsung note 10.1 is used in the cockpit in the sun and I have kept it protected ftom rain. I still use the computer below for redundancy.
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Old 29-06-2014, 18:08   #3
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Re: If I download the navionics do I need a chartplotter?

In a word NO. But depending on where you cruise, you might want something as a backup. It could be a second tablet, a laptop, or maybe a little chart plotter such as a Garmin 440.
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Old 29-06-2014, 18:12   #4
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Re: If I download the navionics do I need a chartplotter?

I cruise the northern Chesapeake. Have extra laptops laying around as a backup I would guess.
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Old 29-06-2014, 18:58   #5
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Re: If I download the navionics do I need a chartplotter?

I use navionics on iPad.

I've tried C-MAP and others and frankly a PC is a PITA for me. Too much maintenance. Then there is the issue of two type of charts to keep up.

I have paper charts for "terminal" areas that I cruise.

Backup for me would be a handheld GPS - yes the screen is small but I can take it in the ditch bag.
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Old 29-06-2014, 19:17   #6
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Re: If I download the navionics do I need a chartplotter?

I was out on a hot day in the sun earlier this summer and my iPad shut down due to overheating. Being in the sun on my cockpit table was too much for it.


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Old 29-06-2014, 19:25   #7
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Re: If I download the navionics do I need a chartplotter?

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I was out on a hot day in the sun earlier this summer and my iPad shut down due to overheating. Being in the sun on my cockpit table was too much for it.


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Yup. That happened in a regatta we were in. Lost the track for about 1 1/2 hours of the race ;-(

After that kept the iPad in a locker. I guess GPS can see through fiberglass cuz it worked fine.

The iPad drawback is it definitely needs to be shaded, and protected from water...
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Old 29-06-2014, 19:30   #8
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Re: If I download the navionics do I need a chartplotter?

If you haven't yet bought Navionics, do seriously consider iSailor instead.

I have both and find iSailor to be a better app (Night mode, map rotates etc etc)
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Old 30-06-2014, 15:00   #9
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Re: If I download the navionics do I need a chartplotter?

isailor is Awesome......


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Old 03-07-2014, 07:45   #10
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Re: If I download the navionics do I need a chartplotter?

Bottom line about GPS vs app on iPad/Tablet- it's up to you. Like everyone has said above, it's good to have at least two sources of GPS (i.e. GPS unit with Navionics chip plus app on tablet) but it's not necessary. I personally have the Navionics app on my iPad, tablet and Android phone.
The map does rotate...not sure what the other comments are about map not rotating.
The new Navionics app now comes with free government charts. Or you can upgrade to Navionics maps or to sonar maps that have even more detail. This displays the difference:



The thing I love about the Navionics app is that I can add things to the map (called "Community Edits") and they're uploaded for everyone to see.

However, if you have a GPS/depthfinder unit you can record sonar logs and submit them to Navionics to be included in maps. Navionics now accepts multiple formats of sonar logs as contributions to SonarCharts™. This includes Humminbird (DAT and GPX on all models, ION and Onix compatible within summer), Lowrance (GPX), Raymarine (SDF, GPX, NMEA), Simrad (GPX), and Garmin (ADM).

All around awesome app and chips.
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Old 03-07-2014, 08:02   #11
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Re: If I download the navionics do I need a chartplotter?

We use inavx, and love it. Some others say they don't like it, but I think they also found tablets hard to use... Inavx has night mode and everything else we've wanted / needed for our weekend sailing and yearly 14 day cruises. It imports weather gribs and tides (not used here but) ect, as I'm sure navionics does too. Free map updates whenever your connected to internet. I'm not sure if Navionics is this way but if you buy the program you can use it across multiple Ipads and Iphones. We have the program and maps downloaded to my and my wifes Iphone both and our ipad. That and we have a handheld gps for backup. I've never once thought we would better be served by a chart plotter.

Use common sense keep it out of the rain or below when the wind and spray kick up, or get a case and mount. In the sun we usually keep it in the shade or put a towel/shirt/hat over it, as I don't need to constantly stare at it while sailing (my wife's better to look at ). I do the same for the tiller pilot as any electronics left in the sun will get too hot to touch and I figure it can't be good for the circuit boards and solder inside.
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Old 05-07-2014, 06:25   #12
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Re: If I download the navionics do I need a chartplotter?

I like redundancy as well but if I was going to only have one other GPS/Plotter onboard it would be a handheld not reliant on boat power or another antenna.
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Old 05-07-2014, 07:18   #13
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Re: If I download the navionics do I need a chartplotter?

I use navionics on a nexus7 as a backup to my plotter. The displayed position appears to be identical to my Garmin plotter. Chart data varies depending on where you are I.e. north or south in the Salish Sea.
I run Android, my wife iPad. Both work as advertised but you can get two Nexus7's for the price of one IPad. Frequently messages are lost when my wife is on the iPad and thinks it works the same as a 4g IPhone....her IPad is WiFi only. There are down sides to attempting to avoid the PITA as exCalif has avered. Imho its better to truly understand what your using and be able to get under the hood and tinker with it. If I had the time I would get a Linux notebook and run Open CPN. But I have too much bright work...hoho!
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Old 05-07-2014, 12:34   #14
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Re: If I download the navionics do I need a chartplotter?

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Yup. That happened in a regatta we were in. Lost the track for about 1 1/2 hours of the race ;-(

After that kept the iPad in a locker. I guess GPS can see through fiberglass cuz it worked fine.

The iPad drawback is it definitely needs to be shaded, and protected from water...
Many users don't know (and Apple doesn't tell us) that iPads use the aluminum back as a heat sink. When we first had an overheating problem, we tried a piece of cardboard to shade it from the sun, then a wet cloth draped over the back to keep it cool. Both were PITA solutions. Then we discovered that all we had to do was keep air flowing over the back. Our iPad is in our pilothouse where there is little air movement, so we bought a cheap 12v fan to create an artificial breeze.

The overheat shutdown feature is to protect the electronics from damage. My Garmin chart plotter sometimes shuts down too for the same reason, and when it does, we just aim the fan at it.

IPads are not waterproof, but if we are using it outside in the rain, we put it in a zip-lock sandwich bag. However, if I ever drop it overboard, I know that it is history.
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Old 05-07-2014, 12:56   #15
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Re: If I download the navionics do I need a chartplotter?

I am not sure what is out there for the I-pad, but for my I-phone, I use an case called an "Otter Box". I have had this case for over a year, dropped my phone in the water a couple of times and it has been air borne a few times and smashed into a bulkhead. It just is tough. my hhone has never suffered any damage. The case was around $40-$45. us
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