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-   -   Charts and Chartplotters (https://www.sailnet.com/forums/general-discussion-sailing-related/332134-charts-chartplotters.html)

smurphny 12-14-2019 02:56 PM

Charts and Chartplotters
 
I have two forms of chartplotting navigation. One is a very old, rugged, and reliable Garmin 376C but there are no longer recent charts available and it's not compatible with NOAA Raster or Vector. So, a perfectly good piece of hardware is good for the trash bin because it has been thrown under the bus by the company that made it....what else is new? The other is a Toughbook CF31 and a couple of different programs (Sailcruiser and Open CPN). Along with NOAA charts, both of these programs work very well. I am wondering if there are any systems such as Navionics which might be better alternatives as the backup nav system. I would not buy another Garmin because of the proprietary restrictions and Garmin map only approach. We only do USA sailing now so NOAA charts are really all we need. Would like to have the most accurate system on board whether it be Windows, Android or other. Thoughts?

Minnewaska 12-14-2019 03:14 PM

Re: Charts and Chartplotters
 
The tablet app based systems, such as Navionics, are pretty simple and routinely updated. Generally, you have to pay annually, but it's pretty inexpensive considering.

MarkofSeaLife 12-15-2019 07:14 AM

Re: Charts and Chartplotters
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by smurphny (Post 2051641264)
One is a very old, rugged, and reliable Garmin 376C but there are no longer recent charts available and it's not compatible with NOAA Raster or Vector.

Yep, my Garmin 76cx has died and I wont replace it with a Garmin for the same reasons as you... their proprienty charts BS.

[Your Toughbook CF31 must be decades old? Whats it running Win 3.1? LOL. Time to upgrade that too, eh?]

All charts except NOAA are crazy expensive.

I love my OpenCpn on a laptop because I love the freedom, speed and accuracy of a mouse.

I have a trans Atlantic passage next year and am starting to think about the upgrading of redundancy. Im kinda thinking about a twin laptop, wireless (wifi) system linking everything. (Yes, I would buy a second wifi router for redundency).

Main reasons are that a new small fast laptop is just a few hundred dollars (OK about $300 to $400). Beware the very cheapest new laptops dont have USB connections nor number pads, so you cant use them with a wired mouse.

I find the iPad and smartphone apps too small or too paired down to use useful. but remember, I do lang range cruising and need different things than coastal.

Anyway, buying 2 laptops that are connected, but independent may be the way I go.


Mark

Minnewaska 12-15-2019 07:55 AM

Re: Charts and Chartplotters
 
Not following why the redundant laptop needs to be connected to the other. Fire it up, when and if needed.

I still like the ipad for backup nav. It's multi function capability, far beyond navigation, is immeasurable. Much easier to bring to shore too, for comm, internet, etc, etc.

SanderO 12-15-2019 08:10 AM

Re: Charts and Chartplotters
 
For offshore if you are not using a chart plotter or MFD... what do you use for the GPS signal/antenna with a laptop?

Minnewaska 12-15-2019 08:34 AM

Re: Charts and Chartplotters
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by SanderO (Post 2051641408)
For offshore if you are not using a chart plotter or MFD... what do you use for the GPS signal/antenna with a laptop?

I'm sure there must be laptops that have integrated gps now, but you can plug an inexpensive gps receiver into a usb port. They are no bigger than a memory stick. There are also bluetooth receivers.

SanderO 12-15-2019 08:51 AM

Re: Charts and Chartplotters
 
Which GPS? are thev all equal?

Minnewaska 12-15-2019 08:53 AM

Re: Charts and Chartplotters
 
Not sure what you mean. A receiver is a receiver. They may have different ways of connecting to the laptop or different communication protocols. How your laptop apps connect to the gps may differ.

smurphny 12-15-2019 09:36 AM

Re: Charts and Chartplotters
 
The CF31 is actually a fairly new Toughbook. It's running Win10 with no problems. It also runs my decade old Sailcruiser 3 program which has all the whistles and bells. I originally had a CF29 which ran XP but XP has become too outdated to use for more than a few tasks. Security is non-existent. Sailcruiser will run my old C-Map charts which have all the Caribbean charts as well as NOAA charts. The 31 also has a great sunlight readable display, unlike almost any of the android devices or standard computers. It's also virtually indestructible. I tried a cf52 which quickly succumbed to a wave over the side:-) The two problems with any computer are size and mounting in a good visible location and power consumption. I have only 200w of solar (above the alternator when motoring) which runs refrig, radar, etc. so there's not much power to spare. Keeping computers charged is an issue.

SanderO 12-15-2019 09:52 AM

Re: Charts and Chartplotters
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Minnewaska (Post 2051641434)
Not sure what you mean. A receiver is a receiver. They may have different ways of connecting to the laptop or different communication protocols. How your laptop apps connect to the gps may differ.

You did not understand...

my Laptop has no GPS.... it needs an external one to use as a plotter.

Which external GPS antenna/receiver do people use? What the options? The differences and the costs? Which port do they use?


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