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  #1  
Old 04-18-2014
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Entry level AIS?

Even though I'm a bit of a minimalist with the electronics, I really like the idea of AIS. I definitely want one before I go offshore, but I may want to purchase one in the immediate term. It seems like a handy thing to have if I end up purchasing a boat in the SFO bay area and delivering it up to the PNW.

I haven't kept up with what is out there, but what I would be after is a unit that is easy to drop in, can function as a stand alone unit, and has the ability to output its information to a computer, ipad, or chartplotter to integrate if desired.

Does such a thing exist?

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Old 04-18-2014
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Re: Entry level AIS?

None have bluetooth yet. And the bluetooth attachment is expensive from what I understand.

Westmarine has a transponder for $500 but I dint think it has a direct USB PLUG OUT.

My raymarine 650 does, but its $850. Expensive, but it means it plugs straight into the laptop or other computer type boxes.

The are not cheap, but its far, far better to bite the $ bullet than to just get a receiver.

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Old 04-18-2014
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Re: Entry level AIS?

You could start out with mAIS and the MarineTraffic apps on a phone. It's not true AIS because it doesn't transmit your position on VHF frequencies, but it does allow you to see the big ships as long as you have a cell signal.

Another entry level receive only option is a VHF radio with AIS built in. Google it up and you will see some options. I don't think they have any output to another device.
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Old 04-18-2014
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Re: Entry level AIS?

The Standard GX2150 VHF with AIS does output both DSC and AIS in NMEA0183. Icom also has a VHF/AIS combo which outputs AIS.


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Old 04-18-2014
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Re: Entry level AIS?

If you want absolute cheap, entry level AIS, and have a computer, check this out.
Amazon.com: RTL-SDR, FM+DAB, DVB-T USB Stick Set with RTL2832U & R820T. Great SDR for SDR#, HDSDR, and Other Popular SDR Software Packages!: Electronics Amazon.com: RTL-SDR, FM+DAB, DVB-T USB Stick Set with RTL2832U & R820T. Great SDR for SDR#, HDSDR, and Other Popular SDR Software Packages!: Electronics


It's a software defined radio that can be configured with free software to decode AIS.

All you need is the dongle, VHF antenna, & free software. Lots of other uses listed too. Enjoy. I think the links are working now.

Last edited by El Rubio; 04-18-2014 at 10:39 PM. Reason: fixed links
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Old 04-19-2014
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Re: Entry level AIS?

I have used a AIS receiver to a serial port with a serial to USB adapter to a laptop running OpenCPN.

No problem.

Sorry I do not know which AIS receiver (sailing school boat)
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Old 04-19-2014
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Re: Entry level AIS?

The Si-tex has a USB cable and NMEA 2000. Works great!
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Re: Entry level AIS?

Quote:
Originally Posted by jackdale View Post
I have used a AIS receiver to a serial port with a serial to USB adapter to a laptop running OpenCPN.

No problem.

Sorry I do not know which AIS receiver (sailing school boat)
Do you need a GPS input plus the AIS input or does the AIS input include the location data?

Which USB adapter do you use?
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Old 04-19-2014
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Re: Entry level AIS?

I thnk you need gps input. mine is connected to the ais.
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Old 04-19-2014
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Re: Entry level AIS?

Quote:
Originally Posted by SteveInMD View Post
Do you need a GPS input plus the AIS input or does the AIS input include the location data?

Which USB adapter do you use?

StarTech USB to RS-232 Serial DB9 Adapter at Memory Express

You need a gps input for an AIS transceiver. This boat had a receiver only.
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