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Old 18-11-2012, 14:10   #1
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Navionics vs C-Map

My Northstar plotter died for the second time, after the first had been replaced under warranty. Despite it being out of warranty, Navico offered me an upgrade to a Simrad NSS 12 plotter at a very good price. I'm impressed with their service.

The downside (IMO) is that the Simrad takes Navionics charts, whereas the Northstar used C-Map.

The Navionics Gold chart for Australia is similarly priced to the C-Map max wide chart for Australia, but has far less information on it.

Really, all it has is the charts, and tidal information.

The C-Map chart had that, but also displayed "real time" currents, had hundreds of ariel photo's, included overlays that showed where the marine parks (no fishing zones) are, comprehensive information on marinas, including ariel photo's, even phone numbers, and more.

To get this info on Navionics I'd need to buy the Platinum charts, which for all of Aus would cost over $1200!

I'm dissapointed that upgrading my plotter has effectively meant downgrading my electronic charts.
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Old 18-11-2012, 15:22   #2
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Re: Navionics vs C-Map

This may not be the perfect answer, but we use both. We have a Raymarine system that uses Navionics and for many parts of the world seem to be better than C-Map. As our backup navigation we now have an iPad with both Navionics and C-Map on it (for some unknown reason the charts are cheap for the iPad and seem to be the same as the card ones.) We just sailed through Chesterfield Reefs on our way to Australia and Navionics charts were way off, but C-Map was spot on.
Last year we sailed around the south island of New Zealand and Navionics were more accurate. So, with both we are happy.
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Old 18-11-2012, 16:33   #3
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Re: Navionics vs C-Map

We essentially have three chartplotters on board: One Garmin, one Standard Horizon (uses C-Map) and a couple of iPads with Navionics applications. By far, the Garmin and the Navionics are the most accurate while the C-Map often has us sailing over reefs, anchoring a half-mile inland, etc.

When you consider the cost of an iPad (US$539.00- 899.00) and the Navionics app that gives all the charts for Australia and Asia for US$79.00, it's hard to beat. We continue to buy the Garmin charts though they're outrageously expensive.

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Old 19-11-2012, 13:26   #4
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Re: Navionics vs C-Map

Can't see why Navionics would be more accurate, given electronic charts are basically just copies of the paper ones.

But for a similar price, Navionics Gold charts have far less information than C-Map.

The NSS comes with Navionics Silver pre-installed, which kind of puzzles me. The silver charts are inadequate for navigation purposes, but make the Gold look like poor value because there really isn't much more info on them. Just more soundings, plus the tide info, but nothing else.

The Platinum look good, but prices are over the top.
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Old 20-11-2012, 00:32   #5
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Re: Navionics vs C-Map

I found that all that extra information on the C-Map chip is somewhat of a hassle.

The main problem is that it tends to obscure what I really want to see and I can't turn it off.

I particularly hate those "whirlpool" warnings. I haven't a clue what they mean.
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Old 20-11-2012, 02:14   #6
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Re: Navionics vs C-Map

Quote:
Originally Posted by Boracay View Post

I particularly hate those "whirlpool" warnings. I haven't a clue what they mean.
Whirlpool, overfalls, races...
Well, don't leave your sailing playground

I got caught at night on the Ram race (not far from Belfast, N. Ireland), having failed to notice the wavy symbols. Wind againt tide. Waist-deep in the (fortunately self-bailing) cockpit, I soon was... I won't forget...
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Old 20-11-2012, 13:43   #7
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Re: Navionics vs C-Map

Quote:
Originally Posted by Boracay View Post
I found that all that extra information on the C-Map chip is somewhat of a hassle.

The main problem is that it tends to obscure what I really want to see and I can't turn it off.

I particularly hate those "whirlpool" warnings. I haven't a clue what they mean.
More of a problem with the plotter than with the charts though. There should be an option to be able to turn some features off.

On most plotters, if you move the cursor to a symbol, it will be able to tell you what it means. Some of them can be important!
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Old 25-11-2012, 13:35   #8
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Re: Navionics vs C-Map

Another annoying discovery..

My C-Map charts had local compass deviations dotted around the charts. Navionics Gold doesn't.

Pretty dissapointed with the Navionics. If you're plotter shopping, I'd recommend looking at C-Map plotters for sure.
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Old 25-11-2012, 20:07   #9
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Re: Navionics vs C-Map

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Originally Posted by 44'cruisingcat View Post
Another annoying discovery..

My C-Map charts had local compass deviations dotted around the charts. Navionics Gold doesn't.

Pretty dissapointed with the Navionics. If you're plotter shopping, I'd recommend looking at C-Map plotters for sure.
Just out of curiousity...

How does the Electronic Chart know what you compass deviation is?
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Old 26-11-2012, 13:24   #10
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Re: Navionics vs C-Map

Local magnetic variation then. The point is, paper charts, and C-Map charts have this. Navionics gold charts do not.
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Old 26-11-2012, 13:59   #11
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Re: Navionics vs C-Map

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Local magnetic variation then. The point is, paper charts, and C-Map charts have this. Navionics gold charts do not.
Ok o another dumb question... Why is that important?

IMHO - Magnetic Variation displays on electronic charts are not necessary since the Chart Plotter does the calculations automatically. Unless of course you wanted to plot your course on paper charts and then it would be on the indicated there.

My guess is the people at Navionics realised this and excluded the variation displays as redundant, C-Map appearently feels it is important.
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Old 26-11-2012, 14:12   #12
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Re: Navionics vs C-Map

If you use your autopilot in "Nav" mode, it will work better if the local magnetic variation is input into the A/P compass. Especially when switching from Auto to Nav mode - if there's a big difference between the heading and the COG, the pilot will change course and take a while to get back on course.
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Old 20-04-2013, 15:04   #13
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Re: Navionics vs C-Map

Simrad and CMap just announced that the NSS/NSE plotters will support CMap charts. They didn't quite say when.
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