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Old 01-02-2011, 07:11   #1
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Charts for Laptop

Good morning all
I am wondering what programs or software you are using on your laptop to view charts and use as a chart plotter. I have a HOLUX GR-213 puck type GPS receiver. The receiver will give me the Lat and Long but I can't seem to get it to find itself on a chart. Thanks in advance. Pat

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Old 01-02-2011, 07:26   #2
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Laptop Charting Program

Hi Pat,
There are a few options available, but I have used SeaClear II with good success for the last 2 years. You can download the NOAA charts for free and setup SeaClear to read them for both planning and chartplotting. I too have the puck and was able to use it with SeaClear without issue. From what I have seen, SeaClear might not have all the bells and whistles that other systems have, but for a free program, it worked well for my needs. Let me know if you have any questions.

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Old 01-02-2011, 08:15   #3
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OpenCPN which has its support on this board is very good. You can use either raster (good) or ENC vector charts (not so good because depth markers clutter it up on some resolutions- probably a OpenCPN implementation thing).

OpenCPN has some issues with hockey puck GPS and the ubiquitous BU353 didn't work for me. I bought an equally cheap Transystem GPS that works great.

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Old 01-02-2011, 08:24   #4
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Preconfigured to accept nearly all but the oddest GPS....which you don't have.

The chart program is OpenCPN which is good and becoming more delightful everyday.

There are heaps of other goodies too...
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Old 01-02-2011, 08:39   #5
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I use an old version of Map Tech Offshore navigator with a BU-353. It works well.

I have to start the GPS Info program, get a fix, and shut it down before I start OSN. A little quirky, but it does work.

OSN will read my Canadian raster charts.
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Old 01-02-2011, 09:06   #6
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You didn't mention your OS...Windoze?Linux?or if it's a usb conected.(some of these are not)
Assuming Usb,in Windoze,you must discover the "Port"your gps is using.Device manager should have it listed.The port will be different when you plug into a different usb jack.
I agree: OpenCPN -my new favourite! SeaClear is good too but like getting into a Russian tank for Windows slackers like me.
Have a look for XPORT too.What it does is help find the gps and pass along the info to the charting Program.Leave the gps on awhile if you are using it to FIND the port for you...XPORT even allows Multiple charting programs at same time and helps if you want to put the computer into "standby" because Windows alone tends to forget the gps on wakeup....
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Old 01-02-2011, 09:27   #7
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"Seaclear as a Russian tank"...yeah, I can see that. I have both, and OpenCPN is looking a little better on my netbook, but I'm still in the testing phase...making two knots walking squares in a parking lot...
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Old 01-02-2011, 18:52   #8
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OpenCPN works. I downloaded and then used the maps from Sea Clear II. It sees the gps puck and everything.
Now, where do I get charts for the Bahamas and points south. Thanks again...Pat

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