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  #1  
Old 05-20-2002
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Advice/Opinions Nav. Software

We just bought a boat,a Kelly-Peterson 44 and need spme advice. I am very confused about the Navigation Software that is out there. It all sounds good to read about but I need advice from people who have experience with the stuff. What really works in a simple dependable manner. I am not a computer geek so just want something easy to understand that will get me where I want to go. I haven''t purchased the onboard computer yet. I thought it might be wise to pick the software I would prefer first. Any advise will be greatly appreciated.

M.M
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Old 05-21-2002
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Advice/Opinions Nav. Software


For a 44, please check with Raymarine (used to be Raytheon, I''m lucky I remembered the ''new''name). Raymarine is very reliable and, tho costly up front, will cover you wherever you want to sail. I have a friend who started out with a Magellan handheld unit on his boat here in Knoxville, TN. He headed down to the Gulf, switched midway to the Garmin units, then found that Ray offered the best bang for the buck. He came into the store where I work here in Knoxville last week, and he tells me that while on the Gulf he sold his 36 and bought a 52 and that he decided to go with all Raymarine.

This is if you want an all onboard unit. There are many software (NavTech for one) companies that will work with a laptop and a GPS unit. But, if you want dependability, in my opinion, go with Raymarine. At least see what they have available.

Best Wishes,
MaryBeth
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Old 05-21-2002
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Advice/Opinions Nav. Software

Hi MM,

As you said, there is a lot of Nav Soft out there. Almost all software works in the same interface with the user. The biggest differences from the tech standpoint is their ability to interface with other instruments onboard. And that is always a lot of money.

Indeed that you may have a very easy to operate soft working with raster charts for as little as US$75, (www.oziexplorer.com) or get a Raytech complete system (www.raymarine.com) interfacing whatever you think except the HBS Radar for something around 2/3K

On the other hand you may also find interesting built in chartplotters, which I believe is the best option. Particularly if you "want something easy to understand that will get me where I want to go". Such as Garmins , Lowrance, etc.

They probably are the simplest, can be interfaced with any autopilot, and indeed work fine for me.

If you plan to navigate in northwestern hemisphere, any of those map systems are reliable. Less reliable for Europe, and not reliable at all in southern hemisphere.

We carry a simple Lowrance 1600/3000 at the helm, for the simple reason that you can tailor your own charts with a Mapcreate software included. Garmin have propietary charts wich demonstrated in this hemisphere to be misleading.

In the navigation table we do carry a Furuno plotter together with a small Garmin as backup. The latter one is interface with the onborad computer, with a standard Ozi navigation soft. (Actually the onboard computer has been expropiated by my 5 sons, and fully loaded with games and mp3 music. If you do have such kind of pets onboard, forget the computer !)

If this does not help, we should claim Jeff for an oppinion.

Best regards

Fernando
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Old 05-22-2002
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Advice/Opinions Nav. Software

I have been using Nobeltec software for a year now and find it to be an incredible navigation tool. It is easy and intuitive to use right out of the box. If you have basic knowlege of Windows programs you will be able to operate it without instructions. The charts are extremely clear and precise. They zoom and pan almost instantly. You will quickly loose patience with your stand alone plotter after using your laptop. If you have a Garmin GPS you can do all your navigation at home on your laptop and upload routes and waypoints directly to your GPS and chart plotter. Chartplotters are great at the helm but it is far easier to navigate and plan on a laptop. The Nobeltec software will interface with GPS, autopilot and any other instruments that output NMEA 0183 data.
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Old 05-24-2002
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Sail,
Thanks for that input. I will send people to check into Nobeltec software. Sounds easy and affordable for people wanting to use their laptops. Now just have to go to Nobeltec web site...

Thanks,
MaryBeth
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Old 05-25-2002
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How about the CAPN''T Voyager? Very user friendly and can be as simple or as sophisticated as one wants. Used by the Coast Guard as well as the Naval Academy.
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Old 05-27-2002
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Does Capn Voyager download waypoints to Magellan GPS ???

Mike
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Old 05-29-2002
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Advice/Opinions Nav. Software

There is even a new pc card from Raymarine to allow you to access HSB instruments on your laptop.

Cool toy, but I wonder of its usefulness since most nav stations already have the radar and/or chartplotter right there on the desk.

Graham
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Old 05-29-2002
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Very un-useful in actual experience, but from tales told from 2 friends who have now gotten the Raymarine systems - they would not part with it, as far as economical and detail as to where they want to go (up and down the rivers to here in E. TN, etc, to the Gulf of Mexico and beyond in coastal detail and even around to the Bahamas). So, seems Raymarine has the best all-around system for the least moneys in certain waters. Albeit, these people have already paid mucho for other systems and are just now getting to Raymarine.

Anyway, perhaps would be best to stick with Raymarine.

MaryBeth
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Old 05-30-2002
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Advice/Opinions Nav. Software

I hear MaxSea 9x is out. I think you can read about it at www.setsail.com.

Snap
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