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Go Back   SailNet Community > On Board > Gear & Maintenance > Electronics > laptop choice
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Topic Review (Newest First)
07-16-2014 11:04 PM
TakeFive
Re: laptop choice

Quote:
Originally Posted by hellosailor View Post
Recommendations on the converter?
This company's prices seem to have gone up since I bought mine four years ago:

Their inexpensive model:

Bluetooth Serial Adapter RS232

Their industrial grade model. I recommend spending the extra money for this to make sure you've got the strongest possible signal (better antenna):

Serial to WiFi Adapter for connecting RS232 to networks

The model I have has been discontinued, but it's an earlier version of the industrial one shown here.
07-16-2014 09:53 PM
hellosailor
Re: laptop choice

Recommendations on the converter?
07-16-2014 08:24 PM
TakeFive
Re: laptop choice

Quote:
Originally Posted by hellosailor View Post
...Nice when it works, or if you're buying all new equipment and can get BT in it.
After initial setup, it's very reliable.

A good industrial-strength serial-bluetooth converter can be found for about $50, and works great with legacy equipment that transmits NMEA0183. Then any laptop or tablet with SPP drivers can pick it up. That's what I have.
07-16-2014 07:44 PM
hellosailor
Re: laptop choice

I used to think BT would be an alternative to cables and it often is. Except when a BT driver craps out, or some piece of equipment has an older BT driver with issues. Nice when it works, or if you're buying all new equipment and can get BT in it.
07-16-2014 05:40 PM
night0wl
Re: laptop choice

Quote:
Originally Posted by TakeFive View Post
Once you work around the quirky drivers in SPP mode, Bluetooth does have the benefit of eliminating the issue of cable wear. I set up my nav system to transmit Bluetooth because I wanted my tablet free to roam anywhere on the boat, but this issue of cables going bad is one more reason it was worth the cost and effort using Bluetooth.
Uh...my tablet *IS* free to roam. You still need a cable to connect the instruments to the repeater those are what were an issue for me Apparently I got cheap-o PL2303 chipset cables that are prone to odd behavior.
07-16-2014 05:09 PM
TakeFive
Re: laptop choice

Quote:
Originally Posted by hellosailor View Post
"It was the cables."
Funny how some things never change. I've taken to carrying spares on any multi-day trip after two "newish" USB cables died as well. Don't recall that a serial cable ever just up and quit the same way though.
Once you work around the quirky drivers in SPP mode, Bluetooth does have the benefit of eliminating the issue of cable wear. I set up my nav system to transmit Bluetooth because I wanted my tablet free to roam anywhere on the boat, but this issue of cables going bad is one more reason it was worth the cost and effort using Bluetooth.
07-16-2014 05:07 PM
hellosailor
Re: laptop choice

"It was the cables."
Funny how some things never change. I've taken to carrying spares on any multi-day trip after two "newish" USB cables died as well. Don't recall that a serial cable ever just up and quit the same way though.
07-16-2014 04:32 PM
night0wl
Re: laptop choice

Quote:
Originally Posted by SVAuspicious View Post
I have had uniformly good experience with Keyspan converters. You get what you pay for.
It was the cables. Swapped 'em out and my data stream has been rock solid for hours so far.
07-15-2014 01:21 PM
SVAuspicious
Re: laptop choice

Quote:
Originally Posted by night0wl View Post
So...I suspect the Serial/USB cable for now.
I have had uniformly good experience with Keyspan converters. You get what you pay for.
07-15-2014 12:16 PM
night0wl
Re: laptop choice

Quote:
Originally Posted by SVAuspicious View Post
Is your Seatalk/NMEA converter the Raymarine 85001? They can be very flaky.
Yes, indeed it is. I suspect it as well. However when I took a nmea stream dump when my mac was directly connected to the E85001, it seemed to work ok (the trace was clean). So...I suspect the Serial/USB cable for now.

THe problem is that these are now out of production, and the Brookhouse Seatalk/NMEA mux's are ridiculously overpriced.
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