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Old 09-02-2014, 02:49   #1
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Simrad/B&G ZG100

This looks like an absolutely terrific GPS receiver:

ZG100 GPS


Besides GPS, it receives GLONASS and Galileo, and on top of that, it's even cheap (less than $200).

It also has a built-in heading sensor. Now this is interesting to me, because I only have one heading sensor in my network, the extremely precise Airmar H2183, and I have had some trouble with it. I might send it back for service, and it would be good to have some kind of backup.

My only question is this: the maker specifically says:

"Please note this product is not suitable for use with MARPA or autopilot systems, this requires a rate compass such as the Gimballed Rate Compass."

OK, so we know that autopilots work much better with gyro-stabilized heading sensors, but I lived for years with a plain old fluxgate compass and know it at least works. Are they saying it won't work at all, or merely that you would really prefer a gyro-stabilized job? I presume that it outputs the correct N2K sentences, which the autopilot will read? So that for backup use, it would be ok?

Anyone have any ideas about this?
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Old 09-02-2014, 05:18   #2
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Re: Simrad/B&G ZG100

It is only a question of precision. They don't say it will not work. Following an article on Panbo, there was a discussion about that. Here is a quote:

"The word from Navico is that they do not recommend this heading sensor for MARPA or autopilot use. However, I have some screen shots showing excellent GPS accuracy and spot-on radar overlay even when the boat was doing donuts."

See more at: Panbo: The Marine Electronics Hub: Navico: new GPS/Heading sensor & VHF/GPS handheld
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Old 09-02-2014, 09:07   #3
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Re: Simrad/B&G ZG100

Cool! That sounds really great.

And here are the NMEA2000 sentences it speaks:

Compass Related
127250 Compass Heading (Vessel Heading)
127251 Rate of Turn
127257 Attitude


I think that's the same as what any heading sensor gives, so should be ok.


I'm even more excited about the position data after reading some more. GLONASS apparently is NOT received by the built-in Zeus GPS. GLONASS is terrific, because first of all, it means you don't lose position data in case of a, God forbid, GPS outage. But also because you get a much faster fix with double the satellites.


And this unit also does EGNOS, which is the European equivalent of WAAS. How cool is that??
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Old 09-02-2014, 14:35   #4
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Re: Simrad/B&G ZG100

What is the difference between this unit and the slightly more expensive Simrad GS15?

GPS Antenna | SIMRAD GS15 | Marine Electronics - Simrad Marine Electronics
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Old 10-02-2014, 03:39   #5
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Re: Simrad/B&G ZG100

Lots of stuff can use Glonass these days , most new garmins , even your iPhone

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Old 10-02-2014, 04:00   #6
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Re: Simrad/B&G ZG100

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Originally Posted by goboatingnow View Post
. . . even your iPhone
My IPhone?! I don't use ICrap!

Oh, well, I do have an IPlod, but that was inherited, and I swear, I don't like using it . . .
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Old 10-02-2014, 04:03   #7
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Re: Simrad/B&G ZG100

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Originally Posted by DDabs View Post
What is the difference between this unit and the slightly more expensive Simrad GS15?

GPS Antenna | SIMRAD GS15 | Marine Electronics - Simrad Marine Electronics
This unit is the same as the Simrad GS25. The GS15 is an older model which doesn't do heading data, and doesn't receive GLONASS, Galileo, etc.
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Old 10-02-2014, 16:49   #8
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Re: Simrad/B&G ZG100

Good to know. Weird that it's more expensive... Go figure.
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Old 10-02-2014, 23:16   #9
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Good to know. Weird that it's more expensive... Go figure.
I suppose it was more expensive to make. Manufacture of billions of GPS receivers-on-a-chip has made the electronics much cheaper. I have a pretty good GPS/GLONASS receiver in my phone. It cannot have cost more than $10.
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