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Old 08-03-2015, 15:10   #1
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Which radar

Which of the radars available with OpenCPN integration should currently be the preferred pick?
Which is most actively developed?
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Old 09-03-2015, 16:24   #2
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Re: Which radar

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Originally Posted by rabbi View Post
Which of the radars available with OpenCPN integration should currently be the preferred pick?
Which is most actively developed?
There are three supported:

Garmin GMR18HD & Navico 4G (Simrad, Lawrence, B&G all the same scanner) are both working with many users.

The GarminXHD RADAR has just been completed, but not well tested yet.

I have the 4G, and it works fine in testing from my attic so far, can't wait for the water to thaw so I can give it a good test on the boat.

Cheers,
JM.
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Old 10-03-2015, 01:41   #3
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Re: Which radar

Does any of the radar plugins have guard zones and timed transmit?

Do any of these show radar AIS targets as mentioned in the Opencpn guide? or does this only work with external MFDs sending out radar targets on NMEA?
Thx
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Old 10-03-2015, 03:41   #4
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Re: Which radar

Rabbi...
First you may study: Radar Overlay Plugins | Official OpenCPN Homepage to see what the different plugins are able to offer.
The Garmin and Navico radars are two different types. Garmin use, what I know, the "old fashion" radar technique but Navico is the "new" broadband type. The latter has better performance on very close distance and use less current. (But can't see active radar responder objects, like buoys)

Guard zones are, as you can see in the wiki, included in both plugins.

Timed transmit for the Navico type is not really relevant, see discussions here: OpenCPN SIMRAD/LOWRANCE Radar Overlay PlugIn

The AIS function is not Radar dependent but needs a AIS receiver NMEA-signal coming in to OCPN. Once present AIS targets will overlay on the same chart as the radar picture.

Håkan (Running BR24Radar_pi using a Navico BR24)
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Old 10-03-2015, 06:11   #5
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Re: Which radar

Sorry I made a mistake in my previous post, there are two other older versions of the Navico RADAR supported by the same plugin as the 4G: 3G and BR24; All support guard zones but none of these Navico RADARS support timed transmit, it's not available from the manufacturer either.

The Garmin RADARS both support timed transmit and guard zones.

Cheers,
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Old 10-03-2015, 12:05   #6
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Re: Which radar

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Rabbi...
First you may study: Radar Overlay Plugins | Official OpenCPN Homepage to see what the different plugins are able to offer.
Thanks Hakan,

as for normal AIS processing, this is clear to me. I had OpenCPN for about two years with AIS in my previous boat. This is one of the functions that is soo much better than in my Raymarine Chartplotter.

I am however new to the radar & opencpn thing. I read through the Plugin descriptions and this is the last section of the GRadar plugin:
Quote:
NMEA ARPA Radar Targets
Certain radars transmits targets in NMEA sentences. OpenCPN can display these targets in a similar fashion as normal AIS targets. Read more: Radar Targets
Is this a good thing combined with GRadar or does it just clutter the display......??
Do you know what the status of this is? My experience with radar is that the user has to manually select a target for ARPA processing. Since the WIKIs don't indicate that this is possible I would think no AIS-like target processing. But maybe I'm wrong?
OTOH I don't really need it. My last radar was a fairly new Raymarine C90W with a HD digital antenna and I can honestly say it's MARPA target computation was too often completely wrong to be useful.

WRT timed transmits I guess one could argue if going from 17w to 3w is worth the hassle. On longer passages (that is for me three days or more) I tend to say yes, simply because I like to run the radar from dusk till dawn. Which would mean a reduction of roughly 12-13 Ah per day.
Sailing shorthanded means you need to use technology as good as you can to keep the crew happy. So I'd be happy to see timed transmit.

But I'm not complaining. OpenCPN is cool, and if radar works as I hope it does it will be even cooler.
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Old 10-03-2015, 12:07   #7
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Re: Which radar

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Sorry I made a mistake in my previous post, there are two other older versions of the Navico RADAR supported by the same plugin as the 4G: 3G and BR24; All support guard zones but none of these Navico RADARS support timed transmit, it's not available from the manufacturer either.

The Garmin RADARS both support timed transmit and guard zones.

Cheers,
JM.
Thanks JM.
I will look into the Navico thing. Power consumption of the Garmin radar is too much for me to keep it running all niht without timed transmits.

Cheers
Rabbi
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Old 10-03-2015, 12:21   #8
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Re: Which radar

rabbi...
In case you have a radar producing NMEA stream with (M)ARPA targets, they will be shown in a way similar to AIS targets. It is not done by the radome but the MFD. Neither of the radar plugins implements any target tracking logic.

Pavel
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Old 10-03-2015, 14:04   #9
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Re: Which radar

Rabbi...
Timing and Navico: The method to make it sleep and use 3W is a mouse click on the plugin icon in OCPN tools bar. To wake it up is another mouse click on the same icon and the response is instantaneous or say a couple of seconds. I'm mostly short or single handed as well and when the egg clock alarms I use to click the icon before I step up for the horizon look around. But I do see your point to have the plugin make this intervals automatically every 15 minutes or so. Wouldn't be to hard to achieve. But electronics are still as they are, I won't trust them to be more then a helping hand and I've at least two clocks.

To completely switch the radar scanner off you need to use the power switch. Response time after power on is also rather direct, no warming up time for this radar type. It's the IP connection that can take some time to establish, say 5 to 15 seconds.

Cheers
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Old 10-03-2015, 15:04   #10
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Re: Which radar

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Originally Posted by nohal View Post
rabbi...
In case you have a radar producing NMEA stream with (M)ARPA targets, they will be shown in a way similar to AIS targets. It is not done by the radome but the MFD. Neither of the radar plugins implements any target tracking logic.

Pavel
Thanks Pavel.
It was just that last section o the guide that confused me a bit.
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Old 10-03-2015, 15:21   #11
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Re: Which radar

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But electronics are still as they are, I won't trust them to be more then a helping hand and I've at least two clocks.
Ok, you are closer to paranoia than i am. I am still using just one clock :-) but i have a wife with a light sleep
But we take naps only in the middle of nowhere, near shore we have a constant watch.

A timed transmission may help in case that single clock fails. Or when its really dark while in waters with unlit boats, like off Morocco.

Thanks for considering that feature request.

Rabbi
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Old 10-03-2015, 16:22   #12
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Re: Which radar

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Originally Posted by rabbi View Post
Thanks JM.
I will look into the Navico thing. Power consumption of the Garmin radar is too much for me to keep it running all niht without timed transmits.

Cheers
Rabbi
We just installed Navico 3G radar and use it in OpenCPN. We have only had one sail with it, but so far we're very happy with it.

Just remember, that you also need to have GPS fix and heading in OpenCPN or it won't work at all.

You can read about our installation in our blog S/Y Iiris.

-Johanna-
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Old 10-03-2015, 23:56   #13
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Re: Which radar

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Ok, you are closer to .............
Thanks for considering that feature request.

Rabbi
Rabbi...
Well, I'm not at all a coder here. More of a tester and user. But I have enough of understanding to say that programming a timing function is not the most complicated work. Next step is to convince our excellent coder of BR24Radar_pi. (See my link to the topic above)
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Old 11-03-2015, 08:00   #14
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Re: Which radar

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Rabbi...
Well, I'm not at all a coder here. More of a tester and user.

Ah, OK.

It should not be a big deal (I am a coder myself but completely different technology). I do understand the point of running the device outside the spec (starting and stopping every few minutes) however this is just for longer passages so the wear should not be an issue.
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Old 11-03-2015, 08:06   #15
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Re: Which radar

Rabbi..
I agree that it wouldn't make any harm to sometimes start and stop the scanner.
And actually I've started to look into the code to see if I can make a test. Let's see where that ends up.
Håkan
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