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Old 12-03-2012, 03:36   #1
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AIS via WIFI?

We are putting AIS on board for the first time so are new users. Our 2003 Raymarine RL70C Pathfinder Plus chartplotter, is still working perfectly well and is connected to Radar and Tridata, but we understand that it is not compatible with AIS as does not have the correct NMEA code loaded into it.

  • Has anyone found a simple way around this for viewing AIS on electronic charts?

We also have on board an Ipad2, with a Navionics App and inbuilt GPS which we use as backup to the chartplotter. We are thinking of purchasing a Weatherdock Wifi Easy AIS to run with the Ipad2, hopefully overlaid on to charts.

  • Is there anyone out there who is running their AIS this way who can give us some hints and/or advice?
  • Does anyone have experience with Weatherdock Easy AIS WIFI? They have several models and we are a bit confused as to which one will do the job best.
  • Will the Easy AIS overlay on to Navionics or do we need to get INavX charts App?
We are favouring this option because feel we can possibly also switch over to receiving the AIS signal on to our notebook PC providing we can use the multiplexer in the AIS to pick up on the NMEA signals from the Raymarine chartplotter, ie position/course/speed.

Are we on the right track?

  • The one frustrating thing is that nowhere in the manual does Raymarine say what baud the charplotter runs at. Does anyone know the answer to this?
Lots of questions. Thank you for any replies.

Cap Buck and Pippy
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Old 12-03-2012, 05:23   #2
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Cap Buck & Pippy,

I would highly recommend the following unit:

http://www.digitalyacht.co.uk/produc...ducts_id=11657

This permits you to connect to the unit with your iPad/iPhone/iPod. It connects into your NMEA0183 system, outputting the data to WIFI and 'splices' the AIS data from its built in receiver into the stream. It also has a higher-baud NMEA output to carry the AIS data back to your chartplotter (if your chartplotter understands AIS data).

iNavX will be required (you can still use Navionix charts within iNavX: i do) as it's capable of reading and displaying GPS/NMEA data from an outside source. The Navionics app only currently takes its data from the iDevice's integrated GPS, and there's no option to specify a TCP/IP address/port for an alternative source as there is in iNavX.

I was initially sceptical to iNavX but after using it for a while, along with the integrated tides-planner and GRIB reader, I find it a far superior product than Navionic's chart reader software - which, in all fairness, was only ever intended as a simple reader app for their charts which are the main product.

Phil
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Old 12-03-2012, 08:03   #3
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Re: AIS via WIFI?

Hi Phil
Thank you so much for your very informed response. It is far more information than we have been able to glean from anyone as yet.. power to the Cruisers' Forum.
We have the Digital Yacht WIFI AIS unit on our list as well, but it is double the price of the Weatherdock Easy AIS which also has a multiplexer built in. We have yet to have a response from Weatherdock as to what exactly the multiplexer is capable of...we will upload the information when and if we get a reply.

Thanks again.
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Old 12-03-2012, 09:15   #4
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Re: AIS via WIFI?

Phil,
Do you know the power draw on the DigitalYacht ZDIGIAIS unit?
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Old 12-03-2012, 09:36   #5
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Re: AIS via WIFI?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul L View Post
Phil,
Do you know the power draw on the DigitalYacht ZDIGIAIS unit?
Paul,

The unit handles 10-28VDC, and it's rated draw is 2-4W, the peak being when WIFI output, receive chirp and both NMEA outputs are all on together (there's one 4800baud for general multiplexed NMEA and one 33000baud dedicated for AIS to chartplotter only) .. so for a 12VDC system i'd expect around 350mA max, and half of that for a 24VDC. The supplied inline fuse is rated to 1A.

Phil
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Old 12-03-2012, 10:24   #6
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Re: AIS via WIFI?

I'm not familiar with WeatherDock, so I can't comment on the its' use with Navionics and the iPad. However, we do use Navionics on our iPad and also use a couple of internet-based apps to receive AIS data. You can see my review of each here: Sail Far Live Free: Looking for Affordable AIS? Here's a Few Low Cost Options

Neither of the options I give will overlay AIS data on the Navionics charts, and both are not without flaws, but maybe they'll give you another option to consider if WeatherDock doesn't work out for you.
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Old 12-03-2012, 11:23   #7
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Re: AIS via WIFI?

I also have an older Raymarine RL70 radar chartplotter that works fine but does not display AIS targets. I just bought and installed this AIS unit:

B100 AIS Class B Transceiver (Em Trak Marine Electronics) - Network Sensors

It does everything but WIFI but it does have a NMEA 2k output so maybe with that you can get it do wifi. Otherwise I would suggest the Digital Yacht units but they cost more and last I checked the newer ones were still on back order.

I was able this weekend to get everything working with the AIS. I am using OpenCPN navigation software (free BTW and great IMHO) and with a single USB connection the AIS is able to supply GPS info and AIS data so I am able to view targets on my laptop. I also was able to use the NMEA output via a NMEA to Seatalk converter and get the GPS data out to my existing Raymarine RL 70 and Raymarine instruments. The AIS unit functions as a multiplexer so instrument data can be shared with my OpenCPN software on a customizable dashboard. Intallation was easy and the integration ended up being simple once I chose the correct NMEA output.
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Old 12-03-2012, 11:27   #8
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Re: AIS via WIFI?

For N2K networks, I recommend the Chetco Digital SeaSmart WiFi. It connects the N2K backbone and wirelessly sends all the data to iPhone/iPad running iNavX. This includes AIS data. Of course iNavX also works with N-0183 data including AIS. If one does not have an AIS receiver, but does have an internet connection (cell or WiFi) they can use the free SiiTech AIS network in many regions to plot AIS targets on the iNavX chart.
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Old 15-03-2012, 11:36   #9
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Re: AIS via WIFI?

cavalier, do you use your ipad iNavX app with the Navionics charts from the card they sell or something else?
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Old 15-03-2012, 16:00   #10
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Re: AIS via WIFI?

We got our Navionics charts from an App purhased from the Apple Mac on line store.

We are not yet running INavx but will probably do so once we get AIS on board.
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Old 15-03-2012, 16:16   #11
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Re: AIS via WIFI?

Thanks for the info on the Chetco Unit. Is this what some people call a multiplexer? We are getting a bit lost on all the jargon but think it may be. Where can it be sourced from? ie USA or Europe? We are based in Sicily.

We are starting to think it would be better to get a wifi multiplexer to distribute all the information and this will always be useful with whatever hardware we use to display the AIS and charting information we are using, ie pc, Ipad, or chartplotter.
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Old 15-03-2012, 17:22   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bluetriguy
cavalier, do you use your ipad iNavX app with the Navionics charts from the card they sell or something else?
We use the Navionics charts which you can buy "in-app" within iNavX, they're generally less expensive than the Full Navionics app as you're using iNavX as the reader instead.

I used to use just Navionics apps - but then they started routinely re-specifying our normal areas of interest I.e. Norway SW suddenly got renamed Norway and Skagerak - so you were forced to repurchase if you wanted updates as your original product suddenly became unavailable. This happened with almost all of them after the iOS5 update!

You know that you're getting ripped-off in some form or other, but the whole repackaging thing became so blatant that I've stopped downloading the Navionics apps directly and just purchase the charts through iNavX (with the exception of the Plat+ CF card in the actual chartplotter...
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Old 24-06-2012, 12:34   #13
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Re: AIS via WIFI?

Ok thanks to everyone who contributed to this question. This is what we decided to do and it has worked out really well, so for those sailors who still have Raymarine Pathfinder (around 2003) tridata systems on board, here is a solution to how you can run AIS. We have been using it for 2 months now and find it a fantastic addition to our on board systems.

After lots of research we purchased a Digital Yacht AIS100pro which was within our budget. We also purchased an AIS aerial through Digital Yacht UK. This AIS unit comes with a USB lead and is also a multiplexer. We had it wired directly into the junction box of the Raymarine Tridata system so that it could pick up the NMEA information from same and multiplex/feed it to our Samsung Notebook.

On the notebook we have two ways of receiving the AIS and Tridata information. 1) Through the software which came with the AIS from Digital Yacht. We found it worked okay but did not overlay on to our existing charts. so... 2) We are running Open CPN charts and have picked up the AIS and all Tridata information on the Open CPN. This is working out very well for us. We can close the lid of the notebook when not using it to save battery and quickly get it up and running when we need to check AIS info. We can also see our position compared to the course we have plotted.

The Raymarine chartplotter is still an important part of the picture though because it does not get cluttered with AIS information when we are going into a port. We are happy to have the AIS on a separate screen.

Thanks again everyone.
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Old 28-11-2013, 03:45   #14
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Re: AIS via WIFI?

hi friend,i think this product is working good with IPAD/andriod/pc,
it's can allow over 20 clients to connected,and very easy to operate it:
AIS Pilot Plug WiFi Adapter AIS TO WIFI ADAPTER
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Old 24-12-2013, 17:33   #15
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Re: AIS via WIFI?

I recently installed a ShipModul multiplex and wifi adapter at the same time as installing AIS and getting iNavX working on my iPad.

It's truly fantastic. Works with all my raymarine sea talk / NmEA0183 gear perfectly.

Happy to take questions public or private if more info requested.
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