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Old 27-09-2015, 21:24   #1
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maretron usb100

I have a NMEA2000 network with a Furuno NN3D display. I would like to have my laptop running opencpn at the nav station. I would like to have the USB100 connect to my laptop so I can display the nmea data displayed on the opencpn application. I have seen that some people have done this but I have been unable to make it work. Does anyone have detailed information on what drivers you used and how the com port that the USB100 is connected to is configured.

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Old 28-09-2015, 06:14   #2
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Re: maretron usb100

That should be very straight forward. One cable connects to your n2k network and the other cable to your computer usb port. Choose the active comm port in the charting program and set it at 9600 baud.

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Old 28-09-2015, 06:25   #3
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Re: maretron usb100

OpenCPN only understands NMEA0183 (I've just been through this).

So you can use the Actisense NGW-USB device, which is cheaper than the Maretron USB100. This comes with its own simple virtual COM port driver, which OpenCPN sees. It's very easy to set up.

Another way to do this is to connect your NMEA0183 output from your plotter through an RS422 to USB adapter. These cost $20 or $25 and so are much cheaper still, and work well. Disadvantage is that your plotter might not translate all the N2K PGNs you need -- mine does not do AIS, for example.

Also, this is not two way, in case you need that for any reason.
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Old 28-09-2015, 08:42   #4
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Re: maretron usb100

The Maretron is a N2K to 0183 converter. MicroC n2k on one end, USB 0183 on the other.

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Old 28-09-2015, 15:12   #5
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Re: maretron usb100

I am currently using the usb100 to keep my maretron devices updated, runing the analyzer, and using the DSM250 simulator which all work great. I saw a thread the mentioned the USB100 connecting to OPENCPN. I tried just plugging it into the usb port and selecting the com port in opencpn and setting the speed to 9600. When I did this I also turned on the debugger and saw that data was being received. I could not get any thing to display on the dash board. i.e. GPS status, depth, heading, wind direction, etc. What am I missing?

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Old 28-09-2015, 15:21   #6
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Re: maretron usb100

I don't know - you have done everything correctly and it works that way for us. Maybe one of the OCPN gurus will have a suggestion, because it does sound like the data are there.

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Old 28-09-2015, 15:57   #7
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Re: maretron usb100

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Originally Posted by colemj View Post
The Maretron is a N2K to 0183 converter. MicroC n2k on one end, USB 0183 on the other.

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Indeed. I considered it when I was building my network, which is mostly Maretron. The Actisense is half the cost (or less), translates more PGNs, is two-way, and is more compact. Seemed like a better choice, although in the event Is went with the RS422-USB converter.

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Old 28-09-2015, 20:55   #8
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Re: maretron usb100

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Originally Posted by Dockhead View Post
Indeed. I considered it when I was building my network, which is mostly Maretron. The Actisense is half the cost (or less), translates more PGNs, is two-way, and is more compact. Seemed like a better choice, although in the event Is went with the RS422-USB converter.
Yes, we have both the Maretron and Actisense (and RS422-USB converters), but the OP already has the Maretron, so other options are going to cost him.

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Old 29-09-2015, 06:05   #9
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Re: maretron usb100

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Originally Posted by colemj View Post
Yes, we have both the Maretron and Actisense (and RS422-USB converters), but the OP already has the Maretron, so other options are going to cost him.

Mark
I think he said "I would like to have", and not that he already has it. But in any case, of course, all of these devices will work.

I haven't used one of the Maretron ones, but you can see from the manual (available here: http://www.maretron.com/support/manu...B100UM_1.6.pdf) that it creates a virtual COM port like all these other devices. OpenCPN, like other navigation software which reads 0183, has a "Connections" menu which will display a list of open COM ports. You just choose the Maretron one and Bob's your uncle.

The driver is installed as part of the initial software installation.


One thing to keep in mind is that COM ports are point to point, so you can only have one program using a given port at one time. This is a bummer for me because I have an excellent utility program which came with my AIS transponder which I like to use, but it cannot be connected to the COM port carrying network data at the same time as OpenCPN is connected.

I bet there's a way to create two virtual COM ports both fed with the same data, but I haven't figured that out yet.

Another mild PITA with these connections can be that when you reboot your computer, a different port number might be chosen by the driver. So you have to create another connection, and eventually you end up with a long list of obsolete COM port numbers.
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Old 29-09-2015, 07:15   #10
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Re: maretron usb100

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Originally Posted by Dockhead View Post
One thing to keep in mind is that COM ports are point to point, so you can only have one program using a given port at one time. This is a bummer for me because I have an excellent utility program which came with my AIS transponder which I like to use, but it cannot be connected to the COM port carrying network data at the same time as OpenCPN is connected.

I bet there's a way to create two virtual COM ports both fed with the same data, but I haven't figured that out yet.

Another mild PITA with these connections can be that when you reboot your computer, a different port number might be chosen by the driver. So you have to create another connection, and eventually you end up with a long list of obsolete COM port numbers.
No problem with this. We have an Actisense, the Maretron and two RS422-USB converters all feeding into the computer through a single USB port. Just connect the incoming device USB cables to a $5 USB hub connected to the computer. Each device shows up as a separate COM port on the computer.

You can lock the port number to a device. Actually, our computers (or the specific software used) remember the port number for each device by themselves, so this has never been necessary for us.

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Old 29-09-2015, 07:27   #11
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Re: maretron usb100

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I bet there's a way to create two virtual COM ports both fed with the same data, but I haven't figured that out yet.
Yea - use this GPSGate Splitter

I use this to provide several virtual com ports to several pieces of software; OpenCPN, Dr Depth, position to Airmail and ViewFax etc., it sends a UDP stream to my wireless network for the IPad (not that I ever use it but I can ). I also use it to log NMEA data to file for later analysis and to replay logged data. Very very useful bit prog and free!

No association with GPSGate just very happy with it. It runs at boot on my nav computer and just sits there logging everything and feeding to the various clients.

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Old 30-09-2015, 11:03   #12
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Re: maretron usb100

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Originally Posted by Littlechay View Post
Yea - use this GPSGate Splitter

I use this to provide several virtual com ports to several pieces of software; OpenCPN, Dr Depth, position to Airmail and ViewFax etc., it sends a UDP stream to my wireless network for the IPad (not that I ever use it but I can ). I also use it to log NMEA data to file for later analysis and to replay logged data. Very very useful bit prog and free!

No association with GPSGate just very happy with it. It runs at boot on my nav computer and just sits there logging everything and feeding to the various clients.

Chris
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