Which Laptops Has Survived Life Onboard? - Page 8 - SailNet Community
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post #71 of 89 Old 07-20-2009
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I powered a HP Pavilion and an Acer Netbook. The HP drew about 5 amps and my inverter is 2000 watts, plenty enough. I once tried a 75 watt portable inverter and it burned up real fast! I would think a 250 watt portable inverter could handle the load.

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post #72 of 89 Old 07-20-2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cal28 View Post
Vasco ...

If you don't mind ... which one?

I don't currently have a hand held GPS unit ... yet
it IS on my list of things to get but so many more things need attention first ... and I will be doing day sailing in SF Bay at first ... and would like to be learning to plot and navigate ...
It's a little round one with a usb connection. With the software that comes with it it'll give you position only but if you run a program like Fugawi or the Capt. your laptop becomes a chartplotter. You can get them on ebay for about $$40
It's this one: BU-353 USB GPS Receiver SiRF Star III 4 Laptop Notebook

Rick I
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Last edited by Vasco; 07-20-2009 at 09:27 AM.
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post #73 of 89 Old 07-20-2009
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I plan on using a Dell 5100 laptop I have and don't use much I also have Maptech lite with US Coastal charts and a usb GPS receiver.
My laptop draws 20 watts so a 250 inverter would be plenty and this is all I would be using it for

I'm concerned about battery draw and was going to install a 20watt solar panel with a charge controll unit

Do you think 20 watt panel is enough?
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post #74 of 89 Old 07-20-2009
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Quote:
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I'm concerned about battery draw and was going to install a 20watt solar panel with a charge controll unit

Do you think 20 watt panel is enough?

No. At max that panel is putting in under half of what you're using.

Rick I
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post #75 of 89 Old 07-20-2009
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Dryclean, you might want to check the inverter power consumption ratings.
Most inverters are efficient only when running at something like 90% of their rated continous power.

So, if your laptop draw 20W (which I assume means 40W if charging and running at the same time) you might find that connecting it to a 75W or 100W inverter, actually draws significantly less power than connecting it to a 250W inverter. Possibly 1/3 to 14/ less power!

Then take a look at a Kensington or other direct 12-volt adapter for your laptop, and you may find that again, using a single 12-volt "car and place" power adapter draws HALF the power that you use with an inverter plus your regular laptop power supply.

Total difference? Could be 50-75% less power being used if you just use one correct 12-volt power supply for the laptop.
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post #76 of 89 Old 07-20-2009
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I wish I haD READ this thread a few days ago. I had taken my new to me FReedom 33 out for it's second sail, first single handed. I live aboard now for the past month and have had alot to do to make it home. I had been keeping my SONY VAIO PCG GRT-280zg on the nav table. Well, with all the things I had to remember and deal with on my first single handed sail on this new boat. (My old Contest 29 was a very different animal) I had forgotten about the computer sitting on the Nav table. I remembered it after a big gust of wind heeled me well over and I heard this load crash from down below.....now what could that have been?...Oh No, no Oh crap..yea, the laptaap flew across the cabin and hit the sole in front of the galley stove. Luckily, I had a small throw carpet in front of it and believe it or not I think that saved it. With baited breath I tried switching it on.( it had been running before the flop but the crash landing managed to shut it down) Well low and behold...it responded...phew, could believe how fortunate I am. I always thought this VAIO was rather delicate and would not take much to trash it and have pieces of the keyboard fly out all ovwer the place and have huge cracks in the case etc. but not a scratch can be found. The next time I went out I made sure to put it in side the nav table and it was fine but I am looking into strapping it down with velcro or tie doens as suggested by SD and Bosun. It was good to read all this info on computers and yachts as I had not thought much about it and can see that I will need to take more precautions as far as back ups, security etc and also be prepared for replacing mine when the inevitable happens. I will probably look into one of those small acer type units or explore what is currently available as I have not looked into them much since getting my vaio quite a few years ago now..wow how time flies!
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post #77 of 89 Old 07-23-2009
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You definately shoud consider one of these:
Dell rugged sailing-proof computers

Jaak

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post #78 of 89 Old 07-29-2009
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Hmm. I'm thinking my large desktop hackintosh is not going to make it to the liveaboard. So much for the "Ship's Computer". Good think I have a macbook too!

All this talk of redundancy and netbooks is making me think about long-term redundant navigation solutions, such as hackintoshing one, cloning the SSD, and dupeing it on a couple backups. Updates to data could be done automatically using Time Machine, on a drive sealed in plastic containing rice or salts to keep it dry.
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post #79 of 89 Old 07-30-2009
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At the rate advances are being made with flashdrive-based motherboards, I predict "computers" will be five-watt, fanless black boxes sporting various connectors and about the size of a thick paperback.

If you don't insist on having the thing play computer games or play back DVDs, the computing power needed for navigation, e-mail, a front-end for an SSB radio/PACTOR modem, and a clearinghouse for NMEA 2000 inputs is pretty parsimonious. You don't actually need a laptop, and if the thing is buried in cabinetry, you can pull out the flashdrive and bring it ashore or seal it up and stow it in some nook or cranny in order to foil thieves.

Can't sleep? Read my countdown to voyaging blog @
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post #80 of 89 Old 07-30-2009
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There is IP67 and NMEA 6 compatible unit available from stealth computers:

Waterproof passive computer on-board

Atom processor makes it possible, there is no need for active cooling (fans) and computer is passively cooled and sealed.

Jaak

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Last edited by jaakennuste; 07-30-2009 at 01:59 AM.
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