Raster vs Vector??? - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 55 Old 10-19-2010 Thread Starter
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Raster vs Vector???

Ok give me your choice and reasons......Raster charts vs Vector charts???

I am currently pondering chartplotting software and chart choices, in an attempt to put together a laptop based navigation system.

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post #2 of 55 Old 10-19-2010
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I have both and there are features that I like with both. Vector are a little more versatile, allowing the user to turn layers of information on and off, but they're another step removed from the real thing. We have a day marker at the north end of a nearby dredged channel. On two different vector charts I've used, it's in the wrong place by a 100 yards or so. On a raster chart I use, it's in the right place.

edit:
the marker at the northend of Swinomish Chl. was a poor example. I double checked yesterday an it was in the wrong place on both the raster and vector charts.

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post #3 of 55 Old 10-19-2010
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I will second Ray's comments.

I also like the fact that raster charts, look like charts, with standard symbols. Like Ray I see many more errors on vector charts, especially mislabeled nav aids.

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Another vote for raster charts. That's all I use. I've seen too many errors on vector charts...errors of omission and of commission. I also want them to look just like the paper charts I also carry and they do, since they're just "photocopies" of the paper charts.

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post #5 of 55 Old 10-20-2010
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I use actual paper charts together with a plotter with vector charts. The vector charts can be easily updated but paper charts cost an arm and a leg to get new (I dont know anyone who actually puts all the corrections in their paper charts beyond a day or two sail from their home base) - Before sailing each day I look at both.
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I'd add a vote for raster charts. Another problem with vector charts is that some of the information isn't clearly visible on the chart, and needs to be looked up, where on the raster charts it is always visible. Buoy descriptions and bridge clearances are among the information that you may not see immediately on a vector chart.

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SD - is there a typo in your posting?

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Quote:
Originally Posted by jackdale View Post
SD - is there a typo in your posting?
Don't know what you're talking about... Thanks Jackdale... you're right...fat fingered it...

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post #9 of 55 Old 10-20-2010
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sck5,

You're right, of course...paper charts are expensive and very tedious to update with the weekly LNTMs. Not many people do it.

However....and another plus for raster charts....in the U.S. at least updated raster charts are available for free download from the NOAA site. When I'm preparing to sail, I download the charts I'll need (usually the whole region) and put them on my laptop, overwriting older versions. That way, the latest "paper chart equivalent" is always on display on the nav table where my laptop sits during passages.

NOAA also makes a valiant effort to keep their raster versions and vector versions consistent. So, while the vector charts (ENCs) may not include some of the shore details found on the raster charts (RNCs), at least the in-water info should be consistent.

Bill

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Hi chal
Yes, me again. No, I don't comment on everything. I got to this forum cause I liked what you said on BFS.
So, here's some thoughts:
I'm sure you know the simple stuff, others may not.
"Raster" charts are digitized scans of paper charts (basically).
Looks exactly like a paper chart. In the US it's possible to download current raster charts for free. They're actually pictures of charts. To update one, you gotta reload the whole thing. These can be used with a bunch of different software on a pc.
"Vector" charts display digitized information. In other words, every depth,
mark, rk, etc. is part of a data base. There are a bunch of different kinds, and ways to display them. They may, or may not, be compatible with different software and machines. Cost more. Easily updated because corrections are small amounts of data.

I know little about recreational, small display, proprietary, non-pc stuff.
From what I've seen - mini chart displays/systems are.... uh, hmmm
not cool! I'll leave it at that.

Nav software is a thing to consider. Most pc based stuff can display both raster/ vector. It's all based on the same data. Really, accuracy is not usually an issue.

Are raster charts available for free down under?
Have you looked at software?

Commercially, I've worked with a bunch of this stuff - since it started. On my sailboat - I run raster. they're free and good enough. It's convenient and fun at times. I always have a paper chart.

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