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Old 11-11-2010, 10:09   #76
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polarizing - i believe the monitor is so bright that polarization doesn't make a difference - if it's polarized at all. i've never noticed any polarization effect, and i've used these for 3 years with my big frame polarized glasses. i know what you mean - my old GPS units used to make me twist my head around to view. but with the panasonic i don't even have that "one eye different from the other" feeling that polarized glasses so often bring.

Hey, Dave et al, I tried out the Panasonic VDL02 I bought onboard last weekend. It does have some polarization effects when wearing sunglasses. The previous VDL01 didn't have much at all. I'm going to try to figure that out - the VDL02 is a larger screen of course, and maybe they put some newer technology into it that reacts more. Anyway, it's visible, but the eye gets used to it pretty quick and I cruised all weekend using it.

Also, the VDL02, like the VDL01, seems to run fine on straight 12V boat power. No power adapter needed.
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Old 11-11-2010, 10:36   #77
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An alternative place to look for these kinds of monitors is not Dell or Samsung etc, but the businesses that sell monitors to industry and the military. They have monitors with all kinds of characteristics such as flush mounted, 12VDC, waterproof, sunlight readable, ruggedized monitors, VESA-rack-panel mounts, etc.

Examples...
Military Grade Rugged VESA mount LCD Displays, Wall Mount LCD Monitors and Mil-Spec Compliant Display Systems

http://www.i-techcompany.com/

They also sell all kinds of mounts.

I bought a couple flush mounted 12v DC monitors for the boat I run. None of the usual monitor companies sold what I needed.
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Old 15-11-2010, 03:09   #78
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M350 Universal enclosure mini-ITX BLACK case
Why this case?
Nothing particular here any case would have worked but this one is not to expensive is easy to mount, small, and has great air flow for cooling.
You wouldn't have come across an IPX7 waterproof case for mini ITX in your researches, would you ?

Thanks,

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Old 15-11-2010, 03:39   #79
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You wouldn't have come across an IPX7 waterproof case for mini ITX in your researches, would you
I have one, its a modifed standard aluminium version,( Versatainer, not specific Mini-itx) with sealed end plates and waterproof connectors. The main issue is cooling the case and ive experimented with water/liquid cooling systems using pieces from standard water cooled PC systems. However I think I can get away with a passive heat pipe in the next version.

The next version is going to be different in that I am going to use standard connectors inside the case and then take the cables out through "deck glands" in the rear plate. I am going over to SSD storage which should reduce the heat buildup.

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Old 15-11-2010, 18:57   #80
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a case???

with my nav computers (2) i don't use any cases at all. just embed them in the nav console. never experienced any probs - they say "shielding" and all that rot, but i don't think a case is necessary as long as the MOB (that's motherboard in geek-speak not man over board in sailor-speak) is out of the weather.
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Old 16-11-2010, 12:12   #81
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Bluegill:

Your home-brew marine computer recipe looks REALLY cool. What I like the most, of course, is that it is very economical. But hopeless tightwad that I am, I'm sort of comparing it to the cheapest of used notebooks I can buy on Craigslist.

What advantages does your system have over a notebook or laptop? Does it use a lot less power? Does it run faster or more reliably? Is it mainly neater and cooler because it's built in to the boat?

And I can't tell from the weblink you offered above: do these motherboards come with Wifi capabilities built in?

Thanks for your really spiffy ideas.
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Old 16-11-2010, 18:48   #82
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the biggest advantage to me is the daylight/sunlight viewability. i tried several laptops, with sun screens, filters, hoods over the top of them... just a big pain without real "on the bridge" ability to see it.

of course that comes at a price - 40 to 60W of power consumption.

the cool factor is i built it myself into the boat, no bridge clutter, etc.

the mobo's don't come with wifi, but the newer ones have a header you can plug a mini-PCI card into. simplest, tho, is to use a wifi wireless adapter - $12.

mobo's are barebones. you add on everything and anything you need or want. but still - what a deal.

glad to help further if you decide to try it!
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Old 16-11-2010, 19:22   #83
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Thanks. That kind of answers my question. I have a 30' monohull. The current arrangement is a laptop Velcro'ed to the nav desk. You can easily see the screen from the cockpit. Sunlight readability is almost never an issue. So it sounds like that is, perhaps, the most efficient and effective answer for me right now.

Darn! Yours sounds so much cooler!
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Old 16-11-2010, 23:57   #84
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pirate My Setup

This may help a few of you out there not wanting to build your own computer and What I did to avoid it.....

I went with a LG 23" LED backlit Monitor flush mounted into the nav station. it has a nice ridge around the outside that allows for flush mounting and only sticks out about 1/16th of an inch. the whole monitor is not much more than an inch thick Runs on Straight 12 volts.... No issues yet. Draws 2 amps off the battery. (bought at Sams Club) same screen a previous poster referenced here Red Sky at Night Low Power Computing Update

true USB MARINE GPS Antenna Amazon.com: Rose Point Fixed-Mount Marine USB GPS Sensor with WAAS: Sports & Outdoors but any would work, just need the signal!

The computer is a Asus EEE PC. There are several models. I went with the most powerful for about $400. They run on 19vdc. (they now have a more powerful one for about $550) also WIFI is buit in. i got internet on the boat. I also tether my droid phone in for internet on the go and coastal cruising
Newegg.com - ASUS Eee Box EB1501-B0167 Intel Atom N330(1.60GHz) Dual Core 2GB DDR2 250GB NVIDIA ION graphics Windows 7 Home Premium

The easy voltage conversion was to buy the following.

BYTECC 100 Watt Converter, NOT INVERTER.
This little guy is $29 and takes your 12vdc to 19vdc or any other low voltage for the computer it has selector switches on it for different voltage outputs. Probably close to 100% efficient.
Newegg.com - BYTECC PW-100W 100W 2 in 1 AC/DC Universal Laptop/Monitor Power Adaptor
The other cool thing about it is it is AUTO SWITCHING, so I hard wired the 12 volt side to the dc panel and it also has AC voltage that I also hardwired in. If I am plugged into shore power, the whole system runs on AC AUTOMATICALLY, no need to think about the batteries, and for $29 you can't go wrong.

Note the above setup is for inside the boat at the nav station, the Cockpit view is provided buy a USB powered monitor that is 9". the monitor runs totally on USB, for power and video, It's great. I have it mounted to the inside of the boat with a hole cutout to the cockpit with glass covering it, (out of the elements but viewable.
Newegg.com - DoubleSight DS-90U Black 8.9" 1024 x 600 30ms Height,Pivot & Tilt Adjustable USB LCD Monitor w/USB 2.0 - 200 cd/m2 300:1

I know alot of you are running OPENCPN. It is nice but for my setup with multiple monitors I am running PolarView, its $40 for a license and well worth it for me. The layouts and speed are incredible with this PC. I also run their free Polar Com. It alows you to setup gadge screens with nema data. A great app for setting up my wind / depth / SOG / any other available NMEA stuff on either screen for viewing. try it here for 30 days (no affiliation) Polar Navy - Marine Navigation Software

The NMEA data was a little tricky for me since I have some older Raytheon wind / depth ST60 gauges on Sea Talk. I had to buy a Multiplexor from here NMEA Multiplexer with optional Seatalk-NMEA bridge + USB. to make it all work easily and output all this data to my autopilot to steer by wind and heading all from PolarView. Overall I am VERY HAPPY, and would not change a thing. With all the hardware running it draws about 4amps, Sorry for the lenghty post, but I have reaserched all this stuff for years and finally did it!
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Old 17-11-2010, 05:53   #85
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Instatllation issue solved

Installing the 23-inch monitor on my boat was a problem I thought about for a long time. I finally came up with a solution. It is posted, with pictures, on the Red Skye at Night blog.
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Old 17-11-2010, 15:10   #86
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USB monitor

How's the sunlight viewability of the cockpit USB monitor? I checked the specs and it's only 200 nits and no backlight. any issues there? have it shaded?

the low power consumption is sure a plus!
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Old 18-11-2010, 22:03   #87
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How's the sunlight viewability of the cockpit USB monitor? I checked the specs and it's only 200 nits and no backlight. any issues there? have it shaded?

the low power consumption is sure a plus!
So far so good. The color combos on polarview make it easy to read. It is shaded under the Bimini but not in a box. It it still newly installed. I keep gages on the screen for sog wind and depth. The polar com interface makes it great for a cool display. You can add multiple ones also. It stripped the unit down and it made it easy to integrate. One USB cable and the driver and your ready to go.
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Old 18-11-2010, 23:05   #88
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Monitor

I too use the 7" USB touchscreen monitor at the helm. It is positioned under the bimini. The screen is quite reflective so I have positioned the monitor horizontal so the the reflection is the dark underside of the bimini. Horizontal may seem strange but in use its fine and feels like reading a map. I too use polarview and polarcom. I also use a virtual keyboard on screen when I need data entry. I have also been using a bluetooth mouse and a bluetooth gps receiver. All this is used on conjunction with a Samsung NC 10 powered via a 12 v to 19 volt converter. I now need to mount the monitor so that it is waterproof or at least splashproof. Any ideas that don't look too mickey mouse.

I have been using the above setup in the Aegean for the past 3 months. 100% reliable.

I have been conducting test with touchscreens with SeaClear, OpenCPN, Polaview, and Google Earth. I am just wating for a VDL02 to arrive here in Turkey so I can include it in the test. The net book was converted to touchscreen using a kit from Ebay. When the test is complete i will publish a link here.

regards

Richard Fairman JP BA Author Seaclear Unleashed
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Old 18-11-2010, 23:43   #89
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rrayfield and subtandard,

Very helpful! Thank you for providing exact parts and making this easy. Either of those systems would work well for me.

Big question... Is there any way to connect a 10 year old Furuno FRS 1000a radar to this setup and get everything on one screen? The Furuno CPU eats up valuable space, provides only primitive chart plotting capability, and probably is a power hog as well. I'd be thrilled to heave it over.

Eric
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Old 30-11-2010, 17:16   #90
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I don't think so, but I have not been doing this to long. The radar part must bee built into the plotter program to be able to read the data. I looked at this the other evening. Radar manufactures are not keen on releasing thier info. the Simrad System would allow someone to develop software to use it's hardware but there are heavy licensing fees involved, i think it was meant for mostly commercial markets, not rec. Software Development Kit (SDK) I SIMRAD BR24PC I Broadband radar you could however use Rose Point software, they have radar integration but you must buy one of their arrays, I have not used or seen it work, so don't know anything about it. It looks nice, and has lots of features, only $400 also.

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rrayfield and subtandard,

Very helpful! Thank you for providing exact parts and making this easy. Either of those systems would work well for me.

Big question... Is there any way to connect a 10 year old Furuno FRS 1000a radar to this setup and get everything on one screen? The Furuno CPU eats up valuable space, provides only primitive chart plotting capability, and probably is a power hog as well. I'd be thrilled to heave it over.

Eric
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