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Old 21-06-2017, 07:59   #1
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Touch screens on chart plotters

I read on incident that when it rains, the touch screen on a raymarine chart plotter was useless so the hybrid is the way to go. It has controls. Has anyone else seen this?
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Old 21-06-2017, 08:14   #2
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Re: Touch screens on chart plotters

We have been using touch screen for 8 years with no issues.
Its just like using your cell phone.
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Old 21-06-2017, 09:04   #3
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Re: Touch screens on chart plotters

Thanks, that is how my AIS system is and no issue.
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Old 21-06-2017, 09:20   #4
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Re: Touch screens on chart plotters

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Originally Posted by Cotemar View Post
We have been using touch screen for 8 years with no issues.
Its just like using your cell phone.
That maybe so but my mobile phone gets a mind of its own with a wet screen and has been known to actually make a bloody call, when closed, in my pocket because of a wet screen.

The other issue I think with touch screens on chart plotters is grubby fingerprints. Trying to view things on my phone or tablet after a short while is hard work because of fingerprints. I don't want to be cleaning a chart plotter all day just to see where I am going (probably especially true if like mine it is located outside).

On the other hand touch screens do make it a lot easier to do many tasks, especially if you have the multi finger actions so there is a plus point.

If/when I upgrade from our old C90W unit I will probably go for a hybrid system or see if there is a Bluetooth option for a keyboard and trackpad. Mind you by the time I see the need to upgrade it will all be "wave in the general direction" and touchscreen will be "so last century"

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Old 21-06-2017, 10:43   #5
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Re: Touch screens on chart plotters

Not really your scenario but my new chartplotter is a touchscreen display (Garmin 721). It lives inside at the chart table though, so no rain issues. The touch screen is fine in those conditions, although Iím not sure itís a major improvement over nobs and buttons.

I do mirror the Garmin onto my iPad in the cockpit via wifi. The iPad is in a waterproof case which does make the touchscreen a bit harder to use properly, but so far has been quite usable.
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Old 22-06-2017, 10:13   #6
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Re: Touch screens on chart plotters

I am happy with my new B&G Vulcan 7, but I do notice my large fingers and its vertical scroll bar do not play well together. I got it for in the pilothouse use, however, so we'll see if I move it outside if the rain affects it. Generally, I'm happy, however, and I used to be pro-knurled knob!
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Old 22-06-2017, 10:23   #7
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Re: Touch screens on chart plotters

One thing that might aid touchscreen use on chart plotters would be those electric pens or stylii you can get for tablets. Not sure if any of the plotter manufacturers had thought about these but would help avoid fingerprints and wet screen issues. Also makes it a lot easier to accurately use a touchscreen with gloves.

Just need to solve the problem of where/how to stow the stylus when not in use

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Old 22-06-2017, 10:43   #8
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Re: Touch screens on chart plotters

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Originally Posted by landonshaw View Post
I read on incident that when it rains, the touch screen on a raymarine chart plotter was useless so the hybrid is the way to go. It has controls. Has anyone else seen this?
Yes I heard the same thing from a Leopard delivery Captain. He said it was a big problem in foul weather.
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Old 22-06-2017, 10:47   #9
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Re: Touch screens on chart plotters

I thought touch screen was a neat idea two years ago when I purchased my Garmin. If I had it to do over, I'd definitely go for knobs and buttons. Fingerprints aside, the touch screen has been a bitch to use in bouncy offshore situations... seem that I always touch it on a spot other than where I had intended. Frustrating. On the other hand, works great on the ICW.
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Old 22-06-2017, 10:50   #10
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Re: Touch screens on chart plotters

We had a touch screen plotter that came with the boat ( a 36 foot sailboat) and found it was difficult to operate when in any type of a seaway beyond calm. My finger was pointing all over the screen as we bounced along and need it the most. Rain on the screen was also a minor problem. As the screen became wet, the plotter would see the rain drops as commands.
We replaced with an older style 'Hi bred - push button' type of the same size (10") and like it's operation much better.
YMMV
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Old 22-06-2017, 10:53   #11
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Re: Touch screens on chart plotters

My friend just purchased the new Garmin plotter system that allows you to turn off the touchscreen function and use standard select knobs and buttons. Nice fix
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Old 22-06-2017, 11:11   #12
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Re: Touch screens on chart plotters

My Raymarine e7 has problems most notable out in the hot sun in tropical lats
when any fine spray touches the screens it goes haywire and requires rebooting.
And, when in very cold and wet like in PNW, the touchscreen function doesn't work and requires using the manual button mode.
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Old 22-06-2017, 11:42   #13
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Re: Touch screens on chart plotters

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Originally Posted by Seighlor View Post
I thought touch screen was a neat idea two years ago when I purchased my Garmin. If I had it to do over, I'd definitely go for knobs and buttons. Fingerprints aside, the touch screen has been a bitch to use in bouncy offshore situations... seem that I always touch it on a spot other than where I had intended. Frustrating. On the other hand, works great on the ICW.
+1
They work great in the showroom where all is dry and not moving and no gloves.
One false move and you are in some next layer command screen with no way to know how your fat wet fingers got you there. Most annoying when all you wanted was to move the cursor and now you are looking at a local moonrise chart.
Fortunately, most newer plotters that have any buttons have a disable touch option, if you can find it.
As a delivery captain, I always cringe slightly inside when I see one.
I definitely prefer hard buttons and knobs.
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Old 22-06-2017, 12:02   #14
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Re: Touch screens on chart plotters

Well that settles it.

Boy's need more NOBS
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Old 22-06-2017, 12:28   #15
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Re: Touch screens on chart plotters

I'm not afraid to go against the grain here - I love our Sinmrad chart plotter and have not experienced any issues with rain or drops of spray. Sure, we have pretty good protection from the dodger, bimini, and weather cloths, but the chart plotter does take spray and raindrops. No false signals or inadvertent "clicks" on the screen from these.

If the weather is really rough I would submit that any little knobs and switches will be just as hard to manipulate as the touchscreen. There are some functions that a touchscreen excels at, such as selecting a vessel on AIS to determine CPA. To me, it is easier to touch the target rather than trying to manipulate crosshairs.

My opinion only. I'm sure there are other folks without touchscreen that are just as happy with their choice.

Cheers!

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