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View Poll Results: Which digital navigation package do you use?
MaxSea 44 13.66%
Map Tech 31 9.63%
Captn. Jack 1 0.31%
Chersoft 1 0.31%
The Capn 33 10.25%
NaviGator 3 0.93%
Nobeltec 34 10.56%
EasyNav 0 0%
Visual Nav 2 0.62%
Chart View 4 1.24%
Offshore Navigator 19 5.90%
Visual Mariner 1 0.31%
RayTech 15 4.66%
Oziexplorer 7 2.17%
SevenC's 1 0.31%
NavPak Pro 7 2.17%
Raymarine 33 10.25%
SeaPro 3 0.93%
Waterworld 0 0%
I don't use any digital package, just paper charts and sextant or GPS 62 19.25%
C-map 59 18.32%
Fugawi Marine 29 9.01%
Multiple Choice Poll. Voters: 322. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 26-10-2009, 15:47   #136
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I use the Capn and find it a reasonably good software but expensive for Chesapeake cruising.

However, the company changed owners and lost my customer information (presumably many others) so I cannot upgrade. Nor can I expect to get a backup copy should (when) my laptop dies. Somewhere I have the CD but cannot find it. I am concerned that the company will simply go out of business.

Should they go out of business - or I find a need to install new software on a new laptop, I would likely give the MaxSea a close look based on the posts here.

I'm also considering a small repeater monitor mounted on my "dashboard" above the companionway. After looking at a lot of solutions and screen providers, I've concluded that I am better served buying a separate GPS navigation unit. That way, I will have a duplicate navigation system. The systems are getting cheaper all the time and offer 4-7 inch units at attractive prices.

Great thread - thanks to everyone for their contributions.
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Old 26-10-2009, 16:27   #137
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Quote:
I've concluded that I am better served buying a separate GPS navigation unit. That way, I will have a duplicate navigation system.
I came to that conclusion and that is what I'm doing. You can get a cheap GPS unit that can load routes from a PC and provide redundant GPS data. I've run into issues more than once where the main GPS / chart plotter died and my hand held GPS was it. It's not unreasonable to have a primary and two backups. If you use a PC based software application (I do). You can plan out the routes and information ahead of time (like you are supposed to do) then load up multiple routes including alternates to a GPS and shut down the PC. You can always turn it back on and reload new data but if something goes really bad. Preloaded backup GPS saves the trip and you go as expected OR you lose the chart plotter and use the hand held with your paper charts. If the PC is still working it's just an upside.

I just completed a 12 day trip 670 miles. Chart plotter died 2nd day. Could have been worse - it could have been on my boat. Paper charts and GPS with binoculars did the rest no problem. It probably would have been OK to have lost the GPS but it was handy in places where it was just a lot of water. The GPS does a great job properly redundant it's reliable (unless am EM pulse wipes it out - been there too).

With at least some redundancy the trip goes without much hassle. Losing it all - priceless. The paper charts and a compass and binoculars will do the job - no question. You keep a DR and you can always be close. Spending part of the whole budget on some redundant stuff is wise. There can be a middle ground between perfect and priceless that still remains fun or at least well located.
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Old 26-10-2009, 16:54   #138
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I inherited a Yeoman Chart Plotter with my boat, as a back up GPS plotter I'm very impressed.. Yeoman Plotters and Navigation Aids for marine and overland,

All the usual disclaimers

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Old 26-10-2009, 18:18   #139
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I inherited a Yeoman Chart Plotter with my boat, as a back up GPS plotter I'm very impressed
Basically, a calibrated digitizer. I used those some 20 years ago but I was doing map making back then. Not a bad approach to a digital / paper chart interface. It would probably do as well as the pencil would. Probably fail as easy as a chart plotter except you would keep it warm and cozy below decks. It does however do what a good trained navigator could do with a paper chart probably faster.

Alternative solutions are a great thing as part of a comprehensive plan.
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Old 27-10-2009, 03:57   #140
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I'm using two GPS systems, all mounted below deck.
The first one is a 12 year old Simrad chart plotter, with c-map cartridges. It gives me course and speed over ground information on the "repeater" mounted over the compagnionway. As it consumes little electricity I use it also as anchorwatch. Very reliable, slow, screen way too small.
The second system is pc based, getting the gps signal from a mouse installed below the (wooden) deck. Much easier to plan on a 15" screen than on a 5" one. Presently I use OpenCPN with CM93 maps, before I used Nobeltec, MaxSea and WinGPS. For navigation on rivers and canals, and to figure out which moutains and villages I see ashore, I use Ozi.
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Old 16-11-2009, 12:07   #141
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hmsindy View Post
I use the Capn and find it a reasonably good software but expensive for Chesapeake cruising.

However, the company changed owners and lost my customer information (presumably many others) so I cannot upgrade. Nor can I expect to get a backup copy should (when) my laptop dies. Somewhere I have the CD but cannot find it. I am concerned that the company will simply go out of business.

Should they go out of business - or I find a need to install new software on a new laptop, I would likely give the MaxSea a close look based on the posts here.

I'm also considering a small repeater monitor mounted on my "dashboard" above the companionway. After looking at a lot of solutions and screen providers, I've concluded that I am better served buying a separate GPS navigation unit. That way, I will have a duplicate navigation system. The systems are getting cheaper all the time and offer 4-7 inch units at attractive prices.

Great thread - thanks to everyone for their contributions.
And there's the primary problem with expensive proprietary software....lose your registration information and/or computer the software is installed on, and you're right back to shelling out even more money for something that you already purchased (or a replacement).
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Old 17-11-2009, 17:27   #142
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Rosepoint Coastal Explorer is missing from this list.
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Old 17-11-2009, 17:41   #143
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OpenCPN is missing Perhaps it's time for a new poll..

Edit: I've created a new one, mod please close.
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Old 17-11-2009, 17:51   #144
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Rosepoint Coastal Explorer is missing from this list.
Do you use this nav. program? We're considering it. Would appreciate any feedback, pro or con. Thanks!
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Old 17-11-2009, 20:12   #145
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For Mac Users...

MacENC and GPSNavX are missing. Both excellent for Macintosh people.

macenc.com

GPSNavX™ - Marine Navigation & Charting Application for OS X

I use MacENC loaded with both ENC and BSB Raster charts downloaded free from NOAA.
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Old 17-11-2009, 20:16   #146
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The Rosepoint Coastal Explorer has a free download/trial version. I have a friend with a PC that uses it. I played around with it and it seems to be quite nice.
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Old 08-12-2009, 07:36   #147
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Tsunamis '99 is missing - dated but still in common use.
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Old 08-12-2009, 16:36   #148
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pblais View Post

There can be a middle ground between perfect and priceless that still remains fun or at least well located.
I'm still puzzling on it but the more I study it the more I like that sentence.
Well said, Paul.
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Old 08-12-2009, 17:50   #149
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I also use sth called SeaClear for bmps - aerial pics and Google dumps.

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