Free or low cost GPS navigation software? - Page 6 - SailNet Community
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post #51 of 64 Old 03-05-2013
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Re: Free or low cost GPS navigation software?

I purchased electronic Garmin charts for $50 and downloaded on my IPad. works GREAT! Excellent detail/accuracy and the "active captain" feature that has all kinds of information. Of course good to maintain vigilence on depth sounder.

I am not really from Toronto


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post #52 of 64 Old 03-06-2013
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Re: Free or low cost GPS navigation software?

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Originally Posted by eherlihy View Post
Have I mentioned how happy I am with Polar Navy? For <$50 for up to 5 PCs (one license covers 5 installations); it is easy to use, easy to update, and it works!

Maybe I have...

DISCLAIMER: I have NO affiliation with PolarNavy, other than as a satisfied user.
I have Polar Navy too and love it. BUUUUUTTTTTTTTTTTT, I have a problem I can't download and purchase other charts, like the charts for Central America or other places outside U.S. It seems that we need to have two separate registrations from Polar navy and the charting company. Somehow, I got really lost between them. Well... that was a couple months ago, it is still not werking


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post #53 of 64 Old 10-09-2015
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Re: Free or low cost GPS navigation software?

Upgrading your OS (I just jumped from Win7 to Win10) REQUIRES that you use an additional license!

I just ran into this issue with PolarView NS from PolarNavy; it isn't so much "a problem," but it is something that you should be reminded of (it took me by surprise). Your initial purchase likely included 5 licenses, so it should not be a big deal. If you are running those 5 licenses on multiple machines (I am also running on a WinXP machine at my navigation station), be careful that you don't run out of licenses.

(Note to Mods; yes, I am posting this in multiple threads pertaining to PolarView NS)

[EDIT] Polar Navy HAS FIXED this issue in their latest release. You need to have the most recent version of PolarView NS for the Windows 10 upgrades NOT to consume an additional license. And, if Windows does the upgrade and you loose a license (as I did) you can't get it back. Therefore, you need to upgrade PolarView NS, and then make the upgrade to Windows 10.


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Last edited by eherlihy; 03-02-2016 at 10:44 AM.
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post #54 of 64 Old 10-09-2015
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Re: Free or low cost GPS navigation software?

"Upgrading your OS (I just jumped from Win7 to Win10) REQUIRES that you use an additional license!"
How's that? What required the additional license, when MS provides a Win10 upgrade from comparable versions of Win7 at no charge. (An exception being certain highly discounted versions of Win7, like some of the developer licenses and other "not normal retail" licenses.)
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post #55 of 64 Old 10-09-2015
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Re: Free or low cost GPS navigation software?

I think he's talking about the navigation software license. At least, that's how I read it in the Polar Navy thread where the same message was posted.

Donna


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post #56 of 64 Old 11-14-2015
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Re: Free or low cost GPS navigation software?

FREE APP -- FREE CHARTS

We have a Garmin 4210 on Southern Comfort which works well, but I prefer a free software program, OpenCPN 4.0 for navigating. When you are in a narrow, twisting, poorly marked channel, it is comforting to have one person drive as another studies the boat's position and assists. OpenCPN has better resolution than the Garmin, is terrific for trip planning, and has better features.

I have a 7 year old ACER netbook (Windows), a USB GPS puck, and an inexpensive mouse which I use to run OpenCPN. The charts are free from NOAA and updated regularly.


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post #57 of 64 Old 11-14-2015
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Re: Free or low cost GPS navigation software?

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Originally Posted by DRFerron View Post
I think he's talking about the navigation software license. At least, that's how I read it in the Polar Navy thread where the same message was posted.
U R correct, Donna.


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post #58 of 64 Old 03-01-2016
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Re: Free or low cost GPS navigation software?

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Errr if you are planning to navigate using some kind of onscreen electronic chart and rely on the depths displayed there here is a note of caution heard from the owner of a boat in a boatyard waiting for the damage surveyor to arrive.

"Well the chart plotter showed us in 42 feet of water when we went aground on the reef. "

Rely on a working depth sounder and set the alarm!
This is not bad advice, but it really depends on where you are sailing. If you are well off the beaten path, even the paper charts are suspect.

As for cheap nav, we have moved from a fancy chart plotter to in iPad with SEAiq that allows us to use government charts (same as the big ships nav stations on an iPad). Some of the charts are free, others cheap (others costly).

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post #59 of 64 Old 03-01-2016
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Re: Free or low cost GPS navigation software?

I like OpenCPN and have it on my laptop. However, I want something more permanent. I'm thinking of installing a mini PC running OpenCPN that can drive two monitors, one in the cockpit and one on the chart table with the displays set clone mode. Pair that with a Vesper Marine XB-8000 that not only does GPS and AIS, but can also act as a wireless NMEA gateway to feed your other instruments into the PC.

The idea is that even if the PC running OpenCPN fails, the Vesper can supply NMEA data to an iPhone, or other tablet as a backup running another copy of OpenCPN, Navionics, or whatever.

Note that while the software is free, this isn't a free solution. The Vesper runs about $800 and a mini PC with a couple of marine grade monitors is about $3000. I'd probably end up spending about $5000 on this system, but I believe it would be a better setup than an all in one chart plotter solution. However, if you are budget minded, you can do the entire solution on an iPad with a built-in GPS chip (4G model). Just be careful when using it to pilot in a harbor as the built-in GPS units are of undefined accuracy.

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post #60 of 64 Old 03-01-2016
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Re: Free or low cost GPS navigation software?

Quote:
Originally Posted by tomperanteau View Post
OpenCPN and a USB GPS for around $30 is the way to go. Great for planning and real time.
I actually find it easier to plan with paper charts. The screens on chart plotters are just too small to get that 10,000 foot view.

The plotter is best for answering the question "Are we there yet?"

Craig

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