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rikhall 10-27-2011 09:36 PM

iPad, wifi, not G3 GPS with Navionics????
Has anybody used a Bluetooth GPS with an iPad2 wifi so that Tides and Charts Navionics software works?

The iPad wifi only has no built in GPS. I have read what the geeks say and there are lots of Bluetooth GPSs out there that "work" with the iPad. I am looking for first hand experience that it works.



night0wl 10-28-2011 12:11 AM

Yes, there are lots of bluetooth GPS that work. The one I hear about the most is the Bad Elf Bluetooth Receiver.

What I will be doing is a bit different. I've been able to get all my instruments repeating to my helm that is running OpenCPN. I think if I can find a NMEA deamon, I'm going to put the NMEA stream on the network as a TCP connection. Then use iNavx to tap into that stream on the iPad.

So far, all I've found is this to make my helm a nmea daemon

Minnewaska 10-28-2011 07:45 AM

I have the Ipad 2 with 3G and, therefore, built in gps. However, I didn't trust that the gps receiver was going to work well when down below, so I bought a bluetooth receiver as well. I had thought this was the only one that worked with the Ipad, at least at the time.

When I turn it on, it works perfectly. Automatically synchs with no effort whatsoever. It is small, charges with no effort and comes with a suction cup holder to mount somewhere. The downside is that it can't get wet, although could easily be put in a waterproof bag, such as designed for cell phones. It also has a swipe to turn it on and off, like the ipad's confirmation swipe, no actually buttons. It is easily turned on and drained when in a bag. I have a 12v dc plug in the cockpit and usually just leave it plugged in when using it. GNS 5870 MFI GPS Bt Receiver "WAAS" Enabled: GPS & Navigation

As it turns out, the built in receiver actually works just fine when below and I rarely use this.

rikhall 10-28-2011 09:45 AM

For what it's worth - this is an email I got from Navimatics Corporation to my query:
Some of our customers have had success with the Dual XGPS 150. More here:
XGPS150 Universal Bluetooth GPS Receiver

Best regards,

Bill Zissimopoulos
Navimatics Corporation
Nice to get fast replies like that.


JeffreySiegel 10-28-2011 05:28 PM

Rik, you got the info on what I believe is the only Bluetooth GPS that will work with iOS - the Dual XGPS. A normal Bluetooth GPS will not work - it has to be a special one that Apple has approved. I don't know why this is necessary but you just can't use a normal Bluetooth GPS without Jailbreaking your phone/pad and I wouldn't suggest that any longer.

The Bad Elf was mentioned. That is a device that will work with an iPad but unfortunately, it is not Bluetooth. It is a device that plugs into the docking slot. That's not a bad solution for a boat since you'll probably be plugging in the iPad anyway.

davidpm 10-28-2011 05:49 PM


Originally Posted by Minnewaska (Post 791199) GNS 5870 MFI GPS Bt Receiver "WAAS" Enabled: GPS & Navigation

As it turns out, the built in receiver actually works just fine when below and I rarely use this.

Do you want to sell it. I've got the wifi only ipad?

ahab211 10-28-2011 05:51 PM

The downloadable iPhone GPS apps like the Motion X GPS for $2.99 have many functions and quite handy having depth and lake charts built in!

Minnewaska 10-28-2011 11:55 PM


Originally Posted by davidpm (Post 791354)
Do you want to sell it. I've got the wifi only ipad?

No thanks. Its occasionally useful.

mr_f 10-29-2011 12:08 AM

If you are so inclined, jail breaking your iPad will allow you to use any bluetooth GPS once you install BTstackGPS. I had an old TomTom bluetooth GPS around so I didn't want to purchase a new one specifically for my non-3G iPad. It works fine, but annoyingly disconnects every time the iPad goes to sleep. Reconnecting only takes a few clicks, so it isn't the end of the world.

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