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Old 29-11-2012, 03:34   #31
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Re: Electronics -- System Architecture

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No ideas, but I am enjoying the process you are going through. Learning a lot about the latest and greatest electronic devices out there.
Thanks. I'm also enjoying, although it's a lot of work! Installing it all is going to be even more work!
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Old 29-11-2012, 08:06   #32
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Re: Electronics -- System Architecture

DH,

Here is how I run my PC navigation in parallel to a chart plotter.

First of all I have an old Raymarine network with an RL70+ at the helm that is the master for the radar and another RL70+ at the nav table. I have a stand alone AIS transceiver (Watchmate 850). AIS and GPS data go to my laptop by USB and I connect to my Pactor modem by Bluetooth. I also have a Garmin GPSMAP 78 hard wired to boat power. I use the laptop as my route planning tool and can transfer the route to the handheld GPS, but not to the seatalk network. I have to manually enter way points and routes on one of the chartplotters.

When passage making, I update my GRIB files once or twice a day and usually get a WxFAX run in daily. I compare my progress to my plan a couple of times a day. Other than that my laptop is off.

In a coastal environment, I tend to leave my laptop on and monitor it and the chartplotter. As you said this allows me to have full screen radar while monitoring an electronic chart. It also allows me to overlay AIS data on the laptop chart while I keep my small screen RL70+ uncluttered. When not actively using my laptop I keep the screen closed to reduce the wear and tear on the hinge.

If the opportunity to re-design my network I would definitely do things differently. I would make a 12v PC an integral part of the navigation system instead of running a laptop in parallel. Hard wire the computer and mount the monitor. I would also consider having a wireless keyboard and trackball to cut down on the number wires. I would also have a wifi option to be able to use a laptop or a tablet. The PC could replace the second chartplotter at the nav station if it is integrated into the network and has full functionality. This will let one leave the laptop safely stowed in rough conditions.

I have felt the need to constantly monitor instruments when I am up and about the cabin. Instead of a large screen HDTV style monitor, I would consider a MFD beside my berth so that I can quickly assess a situation if needed.
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Old 29-11-2012, 08:33   #33
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Re: Electronics -- System Architecture

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Originally Posted by LJH View Post


I have felt the need to constantly monitor instruments when I am up and about the cabin. Instead of a large screen HDTV style monitor, I would consider a MFD beside my berth so that I can quickly assess a situation if needed.
These two things are not mutually exclusive, but I hear you about the MFD at my berth. I have often wanted that badly, and this is the beauty of the GoFree system - you have your main plotter with all of its functions on your IPad, connected wirelessly. So that means I can not only watch wind direction and force from my bunk (incredibly useful when anchored overnight in bad weather), just as one example, but I can watch the radar and AIS from the cockpit while someone else is on the helm, and even operate the pilot.

To my mind, this is the dog's b*ll*cks.
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Old 29-11-2012, 08:49   #34
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Re: Electronics -- System Architecture

I really like MacENC and am super happy with My Macbook Air.
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Old 02-12-2012, 03:42   #35
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Re: Electronics -- System Architecture

Ekh, in the process of studying all the manuals, I now understand that the 12" Zeus will never fit in my instrument panel. Damn.

So now I have three choices:

1. Go to the Zeus 8" display. Smaller than the 10.3" Ray RL80CRC+ it will be replacing, but higher resolution at 800x600 versus 640x480. I can mirror the display on a larger monitor for better readability. I can also use an IPad to view AND control the display, and I think through this method I don't have the resolution limit I would have from mirroring.

2. Mount the Zeus 12.1" display freestanding. It will be much more readable than the 8", and has 1024 x 768 res.

3. The most radical (and expensive) solution, mount twoT8's where the old RL80 was. I have been on a big Swan which had dual MFDs, one of which was used for radar display, the other for plotter, and it was really nice. Problem of course is cost, although two T8's is not actually all that much more expensive than the one non-touchscreen Z12 I had originally planned.

Hmm.

I know some of you are thinking I'm making too big a deal out of the nav station, but I spend a lot of time there, and when I have adequate crew, I really like to run the boat from there.
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Old 02-12-2012, 05:35   #36
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Re: Electronics -- System Architecture

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So now I have three choices:
3. The most radical (and expensive) solution, mount twoT8's where the old RL80 was

I know some of you are thinking I'm making too big a deal out of the nav station, but I spend a lot of time there, and when I have adequate crew, I really like to run the boat from there.
Or four:
One T8's where the old RL80 was and one T8's at the nav station.

Remember: with one only MFD when it packs up so will the wifi.
An instrument repeater over the bunk or anywhere else require far less power than an MFD and an autopilot control head used as a repeater also allow you to control the autopilot.
Glad you give up on NMEA 0183 much to slow and cumbersome. Stay clear from Raymarine c /e New series MFDs, the software is not up to the task. I bought one, not at all happy.
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Old 02-12-2012, 06:01   #37
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Re: Electronics -- System Architecture

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Or four:
One T8's where the old RL80 was and one T8's at the nav station.

Remember: with one only MFD when it packs up so will the wifi.
An instrument repeater over the bunk or anywhere else require far less power than an MFD and an autopilot control head used as a repeater also allow you to control the autopilot.
Glad you give up on NMEA 0183 much to slow and cumbersome. Stay clear from Raymarine c /e New series MFDs, the software is not up to the task. I bought one, not at all happy.
Oh, in any case, there will be a Z8 at the helm . That goes without saying!

Do MFD's "pack up"? Never heard of that. My RL80 and RL70 have been totally bulletproof, and will probably give another 10 years of reliable service to the guy who buys them off me through Fleabay. Superb, military-grade hardware. I appreciate that the newer Ray stuff might not be as good.

After more thought, I'm realizing that I never used more than half of my RL80 screen anyway, because opening a window with data boxes was the only data repeaters I had below. That won't be my problem now - I'll have the Maretron RD250 mounted in the panel, too. So I'm thinking the T8 should be ok. For only $1000 (there are rebates going on now) I can add an NSS7 (6.4" screen) to have a separate radar or plotter screen, to avoid breaking up the T8 screen with windows. An economical option, and I'm thinking should be quite satisfactory, in some ways better than a single T12.
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Old 02-12-2012, 06:09   #38
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Re: Electronics -- System Architecture

Dockhead:

I'm late to this discussion but -

1) Did you decide on a Rudder Feedback Unit? For the AC42, you can direct wire the traditional RF300 or an RF25 onto the N2K backbone.

2) Maretron now has a smaller version of the DSM250, the DSM150:



3) What's your energy budget? Have you modeled your system in N2K Builder?

4) How are you planning to handle termination at the masthead?
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Old 02-12-2012, 06:42   #39
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Re: Electronics -- System Architecture

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Originally Posted by arisatx View Post
Dockhead:

I'm late to this discussion but -

1) Did you decide on a Rudder Feedback Unit? For the AC42, you can direct wire the traditional RF300 or an RF25 onto the N2K backbone.

2) Maretron now has a smaller version of the DSM250, the DSM150:



3) What's your energy budget? Have you modeled your system in N2K Builder?

4) How are you planning to handle termination at the masthead?
Yes, I'll use the regular Simrad NMEA rudder feedback unit.

Yes, I've seen that - cool! Might be good at the helm.

Yes, I've modeled with the Maretron software. Looks like the whole thing will use less energy than my old system.

At the masthead, a termination socket with connector to the WSO-100.
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Old 02-12-2012, 07:06   #40
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Re: Electronics -- System Architecture

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Yes, I'll use the regular Simrad NMEA rudder feedback unit.

Yes, I've seen that - cool! Might be good at the helm.

Yes, I've modeled with the Maretron software. Looks like the whole thing will use less energy than my old system.

At the masthead, a termination socket with connector to the WSO-100.
In other words, you'll extend the N2K backbone up the mast and use an "in line" terminator to connect to the WSO... sorry about the niggling details, but I had to redo my mast run because of this particular issue, which was no small feat so want to save you the aggravation.

Have you figured out how you will do the physical mount? There was a good blog entry by Dan Corcoran on PANBO a while back on this topic.

Panbo: The Marine Electronics Weblog: Sailing with an Airmar PB200 - Part II
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Old 02-12-2012, 08:47   #41
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Re: Electronics -- System Architecture

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Originally Posted by Dockhead View Post
Oh, in any case, there will be a Z8 at the helm . That goes without saying!

Do MFD's "pack up"? Never heard of that. My RL80 and RL70 have been totally bulletproof, and will probably give another 10 years of reliable service to the guy who buys them off me through Fleabay. Superb, military-grade hardware. I appreciate that the newer Ray stuff might not be as good.

FYI--I was at the WM San Diego store the other day. Two Navy guys were buying a spare cable for a Simrad radar. I asked them what they use and it is an off the shelf Simrad broadband for a Los Angeles Class attack sub.

I am following your post as I am looking at the Zeus as well to replace my two RL70 units.
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Old 02-12-2012, 08:55   #42
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Re: Electronics -- System Architecture

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FYI--I was at the WM San Diego store the other day. Two Navy guys were buying a spare cable for a Simrad radar. I asked them what they use and it is an off the shelf Simrad broadband for a Los Angeles Class attack sub.
No sh*t! That's funny. Doesn't surprise me. Yachting Monthly did a pretty technical test of yacht radars last summer, and the Simrad 4g was heads and shoulders better than everything else, at least, out to the 12 miles practical range. Much more detail and resolution.
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Old 02-12-2012, 11:11   #43
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Re: Electronics -- System Architecture

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Do MFD's "pack up"? Never heard of that.
Raymarine C90W, You Have a Problem

In fact it is so common that Raymarine in their QA and newer manuals instruct how to effectuate a Factory Reset. By experience this is no remedy and the unit may start rebooting continuously sooner or later.
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Old 03-12-2012, 01:31   #44
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Re: Electronics -- System Architecture

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Raymarine C90W, You Have a Problem

In fact it is so common that Raymarine in their QA and newer manuals instruct how to effectuate a Factory Reset. By experience this is no remedy and the unit may start rebooting continuously sooner or later.
That's remarkable, and sad. My RL80CRC+ and RL70RC+ have been totally bulletproof -- they look and feel like military-grade hardware. I have no doubt that whoever buys them off me through Fleabay will get another 10 years of good service out of them. Great kit, just obsolete now (no wide charts, no AIS, no modern radar).

I sure hope the Simrad/B&G stuff will be better than the newer Ray stuff, if your reports are accurate.
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Old 03-12-2012, 01:36   #45
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Re: Electronics -- System Architecture

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That's remarkable, and sad. My RL80CRC+ and RL70RC+ have been totally bulletproof -- they look and feel like military-grade hardware. I have no doubt that whoever buys them off me through Fleabay will get another 10 years of good service out of them. Great kit, just obsolete now (no wide charts, no AIS, no modern radar).

I sure hope the Simrad/B&G stuff will be better than the newer Ray stuff, if your reports are accurate.
It would sure be nice if you could take one of these new super wide screens and orient the damned things UP. Course up with the position bottom third would be the way to go.
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