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Old 23-11-2020, 13:59   #1
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Best basic chart plotter

We need to replace our old, basic, mounted GPS.
It makes sense to replace it with a basic chart plotter.
Don’t need the sonar/fish finder capabilities they all seem to promote.

Also, low power usage would be great.

Main area required is east coast Australia.

Any thoughts?
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Old 23-11-2020, 14:16   #2
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Re: Best basic chart plotter

How about a pc/tablet loaded up w/opencpn? Add a GPS dongle, it doesn't get any more basic then that.
Could always do a smart phone w/an app/.
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Old 23-11-2020, 14:19   #3
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Re: Best basic chart plotter

Go with a new basic mounted GPS, watertight and rugged.
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Old 23-11-2020, 14:46   #4
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Re: Best basic chart plotter

Expanding on what was posted above, any computer you have now will work for a chart plotter.

The laptop I am on now shows my boat (my apartment) on the OpenCPN Chart of this area when my GPS USB Hockey puck is hooked up. (and connected to OpenCPN)

The USB GPS Puck cost $17.00

Open CPN is free.

On the boat, I use a $75.00 Raspberry Pi Computer loaded with OpenCPN . GPS and AIS data come in from my VHF SH GX2200 and backup GPS from the Puck.
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Old 23-11-2020, 15:29   #5
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Re: Best basic chart plotter

Unfortunately the OpenCPN route won’t work as the yacht is used by lots of different people and everything has to be simple to use.

Also, it’s a wet boat and a computer wouldn’t last long.

One option as mentioned is to just replace the old GPS with a new one. At the moment, passage planning is via charts and Navionics on an iPhone. My concern with the iPhone is the usual: battery failing, dropping it overboard, not being able to use the screen in the rain, etc.

A basic chart plotter sounds like the solution - anyone have specific recommendations?
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Old 23-11-2020, 16:21   #6
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Re: Best basic chart plotter

How basic do you want? I've got a Garmin 152H I no longer need (I used it below as a backup, anchor alarm and GPS feed for the VHF). It's a chartplotter, but not one that uses maps. I've also got the home made cable to allow uploading of routes from OpenCPN via a serial port on a PC



Other than that, check out some of the basic 5" screen chartplotters used on small trailer boats. For some crazy reason, chartplotter price goes through the stratosphere as screen size increases. I've found CH Smith in Melbourne can have some pretty good deals.
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Old 23-11-2020, 16:39   #7
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Re: Best basic chart plotter

Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisJHC View Post
We need to replace our old, basic, mounted GPS.
It makes sense to replace it with a basic chart plotter.
Don’t need the sonar/fish finder capabilities they all seem to promote.

Also, low power usage would be great.

Main area required is east coast Australia.

Any thoughts?

Go with a basic Garmin, not too many hidden features for different users to screw up, i know as we had multiple users on my government boat and some folks are complusive fiddlers and you had to reset the plotter each time you used it.
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Old 23-11-2020, 21:38   #8
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Re: Best basic chart plotter

ipad with navionics and a waterproof case. Use phones and paper charts for backup.
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Old 23-11-2020, 23:49   #9
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Re: Best basic chart plotter

There is nothing simpler, cheaper or easier to use than OpenCPN on a low cost tablet. I have two MFDs but do all my route planning on a tablet with built in GPS and Opencpn.

I also drop a waypoint at vessel after anchoring and turn the anchor watch on and place it beside my bunk so that I can check I'm not dragging during the night without leaving the bunk.

If I take it to the helm position for any reason I put the tablet in a ziplok bag in case I put it down and forget It's outside.

Easy peasy.
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Old 24-11-2020, 01:17   #10
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Re: Best basic chart plotter

Check out the Onwa KP-7, about AUD300 on Ebay at the moment - built in GPS.
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Old 24-11-2020, 02:51   #11
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Re: Best basic chart plotter

A Samsung Tablet with Navionics can be operated by any schoolkid and also retirees. Add the watertight case if needed.
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Old 24-11-2020, 03:25   #12
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Re: Best basic chart plotter

Not sure that a tablet would meet the CAT 1 requirement of “GPS permanently installed, with MOB function”

We’ll probably go for a small Garmin chart plotter.

Thanks, everyone, for your comments.
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Old 24-11-2020, 03:29   #13
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Re: Best basic chart plotter

Quote:
Originally Posted by markcouz View Post
Check out the Onwa KP-7, about AUD300 on Ebay at the moment - built in GPS.
I have the ONWA KP-8 It has all the Australian charts built in,
It also takes a Micro card for other charts to be put in it as well,
I bought it off Ebay from Hong Kong,
Its exactly the same as my 4 inch Garmin it replaced,
It was also cheaper than buying new maps for my Garmin which are unobtainable,
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Old 24-11-2020, 03:33   #14
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Re: Best basic chart plotter

Samsung Model S.M. T 515 tablet (download navionics) or Garmin chartplotter/sounder combos 65cv (keypad) or 752xs (touchscreen) both come preloaded with maps, Garmin owns navionics. Stand alone chartplotters pretty rare these days. Sounders are a must up North (kimberleys) big tide country
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Old 24-11-2020, 05:55   #15
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Re: Best basic chart plotter

Although Garmin has me mad enough to spit over their Garmin Blue Chart program they sold me for my iPad that they just decided to stop supporting to the point of not even letting me download my purchase again, and what they did to Active Captain, they do make pretty reliable chart plotters.

I have a 20 year old Garmin 168 green screen chart plotter on my center console, that has sat in the weather for the entire time, and still works like it just came out of the box. I haven't bothered to try and upgrade it in years, so I don't even know if I still could!
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