My path to a GPS Solution

Discussion in 'Communication & Navigation' started by Romer, May 29, 2017.

  1. Romer

    Romer fatherofdaughterofromer Moderator

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    I have changed gears on GPS. I was using a laptop and then an 8” tablet with memory map and topo USA with a blue tooth GPS receiver. Never was very happy with it. Tracks and the map showing the trail both were lacking on a trail Cdan and I were discovering in Moab earlier this month.

    My setup was shown in this thread

    There are some nice dedicated units out there


    Garmin brought back the 276C (276Cx)and missed by not putting a powerful enough processor in it.

    https://buy.garmin.com/en-US/US/p/539722

    Here is a very long thread. First filled with excitement and then user reports start coming in describing its poor performance

    Garmin announces the new GPSMAP 276Cx | Adventure Rider

    Then there was the Garmin Monterra. Nice Android based unit that showed a lot of promise. I might actually have gone this way, but Garmin won’t be updating it so it is a dead end product

    Monterra | Garmin

    Then there is the Garmin Montana. Nice unit. If I was going dedicated, Ilikely would have ended up here. Lot of money for small screen and dedicated GPS you still have to spend $100 to get the maps for 4 states and more $$ if you want others. You could use free maps I read

    Montana 680t | Garmin | Handheld GPS

    Then there is the Magellan eXplorist TRX7. Nice unit with lots of potential. Reviews were spotty and very few. Not enough to stake $650 on. Good idea they used an Android basis BUT removed the play store so you cant add other Android apps?? WTFF. They also have an app that looks the same you can download onto an Any Android tablet for $20, so what is the extra $630 for? An Android that is dust resistant and waterproof

    Magellan eXplorist TRX7 Off-road GPS-Navigation

    here is a review on it http://www.androidguys.com/2016/04/12/navigate-off-road-with-the-magellan-explorist-trx7/

    We shouldn’t forget the Lowrance line up. Seem nice, but I believe they are designed for water and loaded with topo

    https://ruggedroutes.com/


    Everywhere I read people were using either Ipad or Android. I originally had an iPAD with MotionX and it was much better than the windows setup I had. The iPAD is a closed system and so I choose an Android. Androids have the GPS built in even on wifi units. Many Samsungs also have Glonass and will work all over the world


    I got a Samsung Tab S2. It was $399 at BestBuy, $339 at Costco and $299 at Microcenter. It has more memory and the better screen. I am confident on the Android solution based on all the users here on Expo using it with great reviews

    I downloaded BackCountry Navigator Pro and Gaia. I loaded Poison Spider Mesa Tracks and I really like the way it looks. Much better than Memory Map or Topo. And I can make it larger or smaller with my fingers. Memory map on my windows tablet went crazy when I tried that and I had the latest version

    That was my journey finding a GPS solution, thought I would share what I found

    IMG_0105.JPG
     
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  2. 4Beast

    4Beast

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    I have been pretty pleased with my 8" Lenovo Tab mounted to my dash via a Scoshe (sp?) magnet mount. I like Gaia better than Avenza, but I keep that one around to look at static maps for possible points of interest. For about $100, I feel pretty confident going far afield into uncharted areas, and right now don't see a reason to upgrade. Guess I could change my tune at some point.
     
  3. Romer

    Romer fatherofdaughterofromer Moderator

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    It fits in the same 8" Ram Mount the Windows tablet did

    GPS.JPG
     
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  4. george_tlc

    george_tlc SILVER Star

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    I've been using a 7" tablet for quite a few years now (oziexplorer). Recently purchased an 8" asus (about $150) and added a 128gig microsd. With backcountry navigator I've downloaded quite a large chunk of my typical bush locations in oz (many hundreds x hundreds of miles) of Bing aerial data. Downloaded about 44gig at the 16 zoom/resolution which is enough detail to see small old tracks and vehicle size objects. Also have some of the oz topo stuff loaded as well. I have many of the same maps also on my pixel phone for use when away from the vehicle. This all downloaded for offline use.

    Backcountry navigator is a pretty decent software package, haven't found anything that I really dislike or is missing for bush navigation. I like that you can set it up with trip based database of waypoint/tracklogs etc, easy to keep things organised. I also purchased the mapc2mapc software package to run on my laptop/pc to convert various other map formats into the BCN format. I found the sqlite structure works best to keep 100's of thousands of tiles in a 'single' file. Android tends to puke if you load all those tiles into the standard cache/directory of BCN since it creates 100's of thousands of files which is bad news (for Android) - slow and keeps the stupid directory indexing background tasks running for hours and hours causing large battery drain.

    cheers,
    george.
     
  5. Jason hansen

    Jason hansen

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    Thanks for the info I was looking to buy a gps tablet. I still use an old etrex with a 2 " screen.
     
  6. bloc

    bloc SILVER Star

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    Which map database have you found the most useful in BCNavPro?

    I used the same app in my nexus10 and even with the 2.1amp charger plugged in the battery will drain slowly while mapping/tracking. I think this may be specific to the N10 as I know another guy with the same issue. Just for info of other people.
     
  7. Romer

    Romer fatherofdaughterofromer Moderator

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    I havent really gotten that far. I downloaded the map area on Gaia and then loaded my tracks over it
     
  8. cartercd

    cartercd SILVER Star

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    X2 on Android-based 8" tablet. I use Gaia GPS as my primary offroad navigation app, but also dowload Google Maps as a backup.

    tabket20170703_220050.jpg
     
  9. Elbert

    Elbert SILVER Star

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    I too think a larger tablet is the best all around choice.
     
  10. Ramathorn15

    Ramathorn15 Supporting Vendor

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    Tablet is by far the best.

    Especially an Android tablet which can be set to stay illuminated when charging but time out when not charging. Also, having expandable memory is huge!

    I have the Samsung S2 tab and it's fantastic. It's mounted using ram hadware in collaboration with my owl Expedition media mount for the 03+ 100 series.

    Also, Gaia GPS is fantastic! Used to use back country but its very inferior. I love making maps on my computer then easily pushing them to the tablet.

    IMG_20170708_203456.jpg

    IMG_20170708_203948.jpg
     
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  11. RFB

    RFB 97 FZJ80 LIFTED SC DUAL BATTERIES,37s GOLD Star

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    Im going to post up reviews on the magelon TRX7 on my 30-40 day overland jaunt
     
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  12. Patineto

    Patineto "Clueless" fourwheel rabbit

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    Please Delete
     
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2017
  13. Patineto

    Patineto "Clueless" fourwheel rabbit

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    Suscribe..

    I used to race Rally bikes with tiny and not SO tiny screens (but for sure obsolete to today standards) so is a pleasure and a luxury to actually see where you are going with out hitting a donkey of falling on a cliff..;-


    I purchasing tip, I found out that many tables with SIM cards are for a certain carrier (most of them you can unlock) and when people change services they usually sell the tablet for really cheap (got four galaxy 4 for around $40 complete with chargers and even nice cases)
     
  14. LandCruiserPhil

    LandCruiserPhil Peter Pan Syndrome Supporting Vendor

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    iPad and Gaia as a base for off road. Other software for street/roads map. After trying several tablets iPad has the best and brightest screen making visible with your sunglasses on. A huge need IMO. I do like the Gaia android software better than the OS version but no where worth the compromise in screen quality.
     
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  15. Patineto

    Patineto "Clueless" fourwheel rabbit

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    I have a galaxy Note PRO (12.2) and a IPad pro and sincerely I can not tell the difference in screen quality (the sansung tablet is really high end)

    I'm glad since I can run Torque on the android tables but not on the Ipad..
     
  16. LandCruiserPhil

    LandCruiserPhil Peter Pan Syndrome Supporting Vendor

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    The screen quality is there from a spec point. Im thinking its the way my prescription sun glasses are polarized, regardless I need to see the screen with sunglasses. I have access to ever tablet made as my wife is a media specialist. Like I said before I like the Gaia android app better. If you can see the screen great with android I would go that direction the ability to use multiple SD cards alone is huge IMO.

    A BIG plug for Gaia - I have run and purchased both OS and android Gaia versions and became pissed off (mostly because Im a baby) and posted my dislike publicly about Gaia and some of MY problem I was having. One of the co-founders reach out to me privately and addressed each my concern. That sealed me using Gaia for the unforeseen future. Customer service at that level is something you dont see these days and deserves my business.
     
  17. Patineto

    Patineto "Clueless" fourwheel rabbit

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    Thanks Phil, I like the way you think..


    So do they fix the issues just For YOU, or update the whole system for everybody..??


    I'm just glad I don't need to wear sun glasses, since the note pro is way sturdier and cheaper Than the iPad..
     
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2017
  18. LandCruiserPhil

    LandCruiserPhil Peter Pan Syndrome Supporting Vendor

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    With SD cards & Gaia you can capture the world and never need to DL a map again.
     
  19. Patineto

    Patineto "Clueless" fourwheel rabbit

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    I don't really do much with the truck but used to plan some really fun motorcycle rides usually with out touching pavement for days on end..

    I really appreciate the newer technologies..
     
  20. REZARF

    REZARF

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    I've been looking for a tablet based GPS for a bit now, but I want to be able to move it between our vehicles. I have a few old iPad 2s laying around but don't want to fight them if they are going to be more trouble than they are worth. I also have the RAM mount for the ipad as well.

    Is it worth it in your opinion to jump into a new tablet like the S2 for a dedicated GPS for trail work? I've been doing a lot more exploring and off the beaten path stuff in Wyoming, Colorado and Montana... My DeLormes atlas' are leaving a lot to be desired.

    Thanks in advance
     
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