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Steel City Seekers

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Everything posted by Steel City Seekers

  1. No, Brian is technically correct. Any of the consumer grade GPS receivers are accurate at 8-10 feet 95 percent of the time with WAAS corrections and receiving adequate satellite data. Reception, however, is an entirely different matter and determines whether or not the GPS is receiving adequate satellite data. Without a doubt, there is a difference in reception among receivers given various factors such as heavy foliage and "urban canyons," but they all should be relatively equal with accuracy. It might be fair that the reception was not equal, but the accuracy most likely was. Brian didn't mention reception.
  2. And will also run the 6.3 topo software in addition to the turn-by-turn software if I'm not mistaken. The 100M seems like a pretty good recommendation to me. You might also consider an H20 that can be had for less than $150 (b/w screen, no electronic compass). If you want to go cheaper, you could probably pick up an iFinder Pro for a steal. It is comparable to the other Lowrances, but is not waterproofed to IPX7 like the Hunt. Speaking of the topo, do you know that Lowrance has just released MapCreate 7.0 topo? It's too early for me to have ascertained all of the updates, but I do know that it has added topo details for Alaska and has enhanced lake depth and other details for the USA. I'd be surprised if it hit the Plus packages yet though. Welcome Back!
  3. Well, obviously, the Pocket PC thinks you've installed a modem, which the system probably does by default. You have to "tell it" that you've installed a different device. Since I've never used any of the software or hardware you've cited, I'm of little help, but have some suggestions. Most of the mapping software packages have a function to select the GPS input device. I'd try to insert the CF, cancel out of any setup options that might appear, and open Pocket Streets. Here's where I'm of little help because I don't use Pocket Streets, but try to find GPS setup menus in the software. You're looking for some sort of option where you can select the Port and maybe the Baud for the GPS input. If you know the port and baud (it's almost always 4800), then input them and try to find an option to connect to the GPS if it doesn't happen automatically. Some software packages will have an option to automatically detect the Port that is transmitting data. If you don't know these things and there is no option to automatically detect, then you'll have to rely on trial-and-error. Try Port COM1, baud 4800, connect. If nothing, then Port COM2, baud 4800, connect. Etc. The good news is that your Pocket PC probably doesn't have more than 10 COM ports. If none of these menu items are available, or if my advice doesn't work, I'd suggest posting your question on a more Pocket PC centered forum. Aximsite.com is great, and they're more than willing to help non-Axim owners. Pocketpcthoughts.com is another, and there is an IPAQ-specific forum out there, but I forget what it is called.
  4. Actually, GPXSonar (a Cachemate-like program for the Pocket PC) has an option to export to Lowrance, Magellan Explorist, and Magellan Meridian waypoints. Since my Pocket PC and Lowrance both use an SD card, I should be able to transfer files using the card and thus skipping the whole need for a USB or PDA specific cord, but I've never tried it. I'm curious, though, so I might try it tonight. I'd expect, however, that I couldn't customize the data like I do in GSAK. For example, I have GSAK set to output the name of the cache rather than the GC waypoint and would think I couldn't change this in the GPXSonar transfer.
  5. You don't NEED more than the included map for simple navigating, etc. However, the built-in map only has major U.S. routes and interstates. MapCreate adds minor roads, exceptional water detail including small streams, topographical lines, public lands and hunting areas, and some other features. I can't say for sure, but I'd think you would want to get the software eventually and it would cost more if you buy it afterwards. Plus, it makes less sense, I think, to have the color screen without the mapping detail. There is a way to create your own maps using freely-available Govt mapping data and some software designed to create them, but the process is not for the faint of heart and I've not spent much time trying it. These maps have better information, or at least more topographical lines, than MapCreate.
  6. In my opinion, the Expedition would be a perfect match for these activities, especially with the MapCreate software. Expedition = ultra-sensitive receiver (for reception in dense cover), color screen, lots of memory with SD card expandability. Hunt = a little less sensitive (but still good) receiver, b/w screen, lots of memory. Explorist 210 = still less sensitive that the Lowrances, b/w screen, limited onboard memory. Maybe a pro that it is smaller in overall size than the Lowrances; maybe a con that it has a smaller resolution screen; that's up to you. Explorist 200 = same receiver chip as the 210, no expandable memory for additional maps. iWay = not an option for your cited purposes, I don't think, especially since they are all off-road activities and the iWay is for on-the-road. Mapping software for the Expedition (or Hunt or Explorist 210) is much cheaper if you buy it as a package with the receiver.
  7. Whoa, whoa. What happens on the Go when you press the Ent button from the map screen? It should come up with a menu to create a new waypoint from a variety of options, including an "Entered Position." This allows you to add the coordinates directly to create a waypoint rather than zooming and scrolling until you have the cursor in the correct coordinate spot. Much less laborious if you already know the coordinates.
  8. After my earlier post, I found a review from a user at Cabela's that said he used his Hunt with a speaker to play his pre-recorded game calls in the woods. Kinda cool, I think, but I'd think if it could output game calls to a speaker in the woods, then it would probably be pretty decent with a pair of headphones. For clarification, Briansnat reviewed the H2O. Although he published a very good review, the H2O does not have the mp3 player capability.
  9. It sounds like your receiver has a thing called "static navigation" disabled. I admittedly have a limited understanding of static navigation, but I think it goes something like this. When static navigation is enabled and you are below a certain speed, the receiver freezes, discontinues using new GPS data, and shows you in one spot. It only accurately updates itself when it is above a certain speed threshhold. When you're using a receiver that does not have static navigation enabled and you're standing still, the receiver somehow (this is where it's a bit fuzzy for me) gets an increased number of inaccurate positions. This makes your reported position jump all around. I think they do this because they were primarily designed for use in a car rather than walking around. I know how you feel, though. I have a BT receiver with a Sirf II chip that apparently did not have static navigation enabled. I tried to find a cache with it and it was like hitting my head on a wall. It had me going sometimes a quarter mile in different directions. I have no clue where that cache was! I also have a BT receiver with a SirfIII chip that has static navigation enabled. It is much more reliable. The only catch is that you have to move over the minimum speed, which isn't too much of a problem given that is about a normal walking pace. With regard to the Wintec, it uses a chip I've never heard of: the u-Nav + iTrax, 3rd generation. It seems to me that the static navigation is not enabled on this receiver based on the discussion (see the con in particular) in this review: http://www.mobilitysite.com/articles/link.php?id=352 For some more discussion about static navigation and some software and procedures you might be able to use to enable static navigation on your receiver, spend some time reading this article paying particular attention to the fourth section on static navigation: http://www.gpspassion.com/forumsen/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=25575 The potential problem is that the programs and fixes in the article are, I think, specifically for SirfIII receivers. If I were you, I'd try some of the suggestions in the gpspassion article before scrapping the receiver and investing in a new one. If you end up going for a new receiver, I'd suggest one of the SirfIII models. There are a zillion of them out there, they seem to be customizeable using the above link, and I think most of them come with static navigation already enabled. Good Luck. Edit: In re-reading the gpspassion article, I got it totally backwards. You want static navigation to be off for pedestrian use. Sorry -- reverse everything I said above. Also, please note that the software is for a PC, but there is a post after the article that references a Pocket PC application you can use to change settings. Again, it might be specifically for a SirfIII chip, but it might work or maybe you can google for something similar for the Wintec's chip.
  10. I don't initialize often so I'm not used to looking at that option, but it almost sounds like you have the menu open with the initialize option highlighted. Have you taken it outside with a clear view of the sky and left it for a while? With regard to the altimeter, it needs to be calibrated. Press the "pages" button until you get to the GPS Data page (the one that shows you barometer readings at the top and blocks with elevation, etc. data underneath). Press Menu and select Calibrate Altimeter (or Barometer -- I forget what its called). You will then have an option to automatically calibrate using map or GPS data or input your own height. It sounds like you want to manually enter the elevation. However, if you don't already have an initialized fix, then you don't know what the GPS elevation is reporting for comparison. Your 200 foot difference might just be dummy data it is displaying until it gets a fix. While you're at it, head over to the compass page, select menu and select Calibrate Compass and prepare to do a modified Chicken Dance per the instructions you'll receive.
  11. I've seen your question asked in two of those forums. I just don't think that any of the five* of us have tried them. It probably works fine and the only thing I'd be concerned about would be the waterproofiness** of the receiver in the wild. In looking at it on REI, it looks like you can plug any set of headphones into the adapter (I don't know this for sure -- it just looks that way), so I'd guess you wouldn't have to pony up for the $18 REI headphones. My only suggestion is to eat the cost of an adapter and try it out. *Not all Lowrances have music playing capability. I think there are six people that own those. **Use simple terms because some of the Garmin guys might be reading.
  12. Boy, you have quite a lot going on there. My initial reaction was to pick up a Bluetooth receiver from buygpsnow.com or semsons.com. I’m pretty sure that all of them work with the Pocket PC, and you’d just have to verify compatibility with the Palm OS. Then pick up a Bluetooth PC card for the laptop and you’re good to go. Then I got to thinking about it a bit. You’d also have to have mapping on each of the devices. Goggle earth on the laptop. OK, but are you going to want voiced driving directions? If so, the laptop will need software for this. But then, you’d get into separate software packages for the Palm and Dell since they both run different operating systems. I can’t speak for the Palm because I don’t use one, but software for the Pocket PC that would direct you to a cache would include something as cheap as Cachemate (<$10) or Beeline; a cheap, but competent topo mapping program like Backcountry Navigator ($30); or a whole-hog navigation package like iGuidance, TomTom, and a host of others ($90+). That’s still an option if you want to go through all that, and here’s another option: Pick up yet another device – you can never have too many – a stand-alone rugged mapping receiver from Lowrance, Garmin, or Magellan that is capable of NMEA data output. Then, forget about using the Palm or the Dell outside of the car and use the mapping receiver instead. Get a cable to connect the receiver to the laptop -- http://pc-mobile.net/gps.htm is one source -- and use your Google Earth or pick up Streets and Trips or similar if you want detailed navigation. Or, just for the heck of it, how about a third option: Forget about everything you already own and pick up a Garmin or Magellan for which you can purchase separate topo and/or street mapping software and use this for all your GPS activities. I’m sure there are more options and I could probably think of at least some of them with some more time, but my inclination would be the second option. It seems to me it provides the best of everything. A rugged receiver to use outside the car (you can still carry your Palm with you in a protective case) that you don’t have to be concerned about in the rain or cold temperatures or dropping in the drink, etc.; and highly-capable routing software with voiced navigation and advanced routing options to use in the car. (Actually, you could use it with the laptop or the Pocket PC, depending on the cable and software you bought). FWIW, my setup is a stand-alone receiver with topo mapping and a Pocket PC with a bluetooth receiver and Mapopolis mapping. The Pocket PC is full-time in the car and the stand-alone is full-time in the woods. I never carry a laptop with me anywhere anymore.
  13. Yep, this is correct. After draining a good number of Sierra Nevada Pale Ales tonight (none of the dodgone distributors here carry their Pilsner), I wouldn't disagree with anything he says.
  14. "C" (color) models are SirfIII (H20 C, Expedition C, Hunt C). The black and white models are SirfII, although I *think* the Go models might also be SirfIII. Maybe someone can confirm that last part. Additionally, there are a multitude of bluetooth, mouse, and flash card 'dummy' (i.e., they transmit NMEA data only -- no screens) receivers that are SirfIII enabled. You can hook 'em up to your laptop or PDA. The chipset for these are usually clearly identified in the detailed specifications.
  15. In Mapopolis, if you zoom in the entire way, then the coordinates should be correct. Even so, being off by only one is less than 10 feet, which shouldn't be a problem for geocaching. Finally, while the coordinates might be off by one, the actual maplet should be in the correct place. Mapopolis can provide some trail information with its breadcrumb feature. This is how you do it. Tools -> Settings -> GPS Options -> Select the "Log Data" tab (Do this before you set out on your hike/drive. It records your position at some interval. I think it's every second). Then do: Tools -> Settings -> Map Features -> Select the "GPS Trail" box. This should display a series of dots, making up your trail, as you walk along. The "GPS Trail" option displays it on the map. There is also a feature if you'd like to sit on your couch at home and replay the trip on the Pocket PC. Try this: Tools -> GPS -> View (at the bottom) -> Show Log -> Tap on one of your saved trips -> Select Log Playback at the bottom -> Tap OK and watch it replay your trip on the map. I never found a good use for this, but it is a cool feature, I think. Now, from the GPS Log screen, you can select Save/Restore from the bottom and save your file as a text document. You end up with a text document that shows relevant data such as the coordinates, the time you were at those coordinates, elevation, and some other things. This is a way to save your trail. I don't know how to convert it into anything useful because I never tried. Maybe GPSBabel can convert it to another format. I'd also think that you could import some other trail from another source if you could get it into a .gpx file, then use gpxtomaplet to convert it over to a series of maplets that would display in Mapopolis. I've also never tried this. I'm not trying to talk you into Mapopolis or tell you that there are other options that might better suit your needs (I don't know of any), but I want to offer some clarifications on Mapopolis' capabilities. You should also know that Mapopolis is apprarently going out of the Pocket PC business. There's a thread here probably pushed back a few pages on the subject. Or, you could surf over to gpspassion.com and look in the Mapopolis forums for more details. This means no more program updates (which is okay because the program is pretty competent already), but it also means no more map updates, so you're stuck with the version of maps you buy. It's too bad because, absent evaluations of other programs by myself, it appears that Mapopolis was much better for geocaching and off-road activities than other navigation programs.
  16. This is correct. In addition to the compass and pressure sensor, the Expedition has a few other features such as Scout Mode that allows you to walk a perimeter and then calculate the area. You can compare the features side-by-side at Lowrance's website as there may be more, but I can't recall all of them. With regard to routing, I wonder if you can get a deal from your source on a Lowrance in-car model. If your deal is good enough, then a separate ifinder and in-car might price out cheaper than a Garmin with all of the software you'd need. And, you wouldn't have to cause an accident trying to look at a tiny screen that doesn't offer voice-guided direction.
  17. Okay, I rescind my earlier advice. While ordering, delivery, and obtaining a return number went well, I have been waiting seven days for them to credit my account. That is, UPS indicated they delivered it to their front door seven days ago and I'm still waiting. That's ridiculous and the soon to be a third statement above is no longer accurate as I'm planning to go with a different company. Sorry for what turned out to be not so great advice, but I'm glad the OP went with someone else.
  18. I'd say to figure out whether you want the electronic goodies (compass, altimeter) that the Expedition C offers. If not, then go for the H2O C. With the exception of more icons, I haven't figured out what the Hunt C offers over the Expedition. And, as Brian says, be sure to pick up one of the Plus packages as the software is much cheaper this way. Lowrance has announced its newest version of mapping software (MapCreate 7), and it appears it offers many more lakes and depth data for those lakes as well as topo details for Alaska. However, it doesn't appear to be for sale quite yet. If lake and Alaska details would make a difference to you, maybe hold off for just a bit more time.
  19. One option is to connect your etrex and PDA directly to use the etrex as the external GPS. Look here for two references: http://www.pc-mobile.net/gedc.htm http://www.thesupplynet.com/searchResults....;ProdMadeBy=289 Another option is, as you say, to buy a separate GPS for your PDA. Some good sources for cabled or bluetooth or flash card add-ons can be found at: http://www.buygpsnow.com/ http://www.semsons.com/ Either way, you might want to consider external power (like the cigarette lighter in a golf cart, if you use a golf cart) because the battery in a PDA is unlikely to last an 18-hole round. Don't know anything about programs that might be available for the GPS only.
  20. I've had good luck with these guys with two GPS receivers (soon to be a third) and a PDA: http://www.thenerds.net/index.php?page=pro...ge&pn=11238 Any time I look up Pricegrabber or similar, they come out among the very cheapest and my experience is that they have it in stock if they say they do. In fact, it appears they remove it from their website if it isn't in stock because they had an H2O C there a month ago, and removed the item for a while, then put the item back up with a stock of a dozen not too long ago. I recently returned an Explorer Plus to them. I tried to get an RMA from their website, but it said they don't accept Lowrance returns. After less than five minutes on the phone with Customer Service, they issued an RMA with no argument. Edit: No, now that I think about it, the Customer Service call was more like 20 or 25 minutes including wait time, but only a few minutes with the rep to obtain the return ticket.
  21. To be more specific, there is a Windows Mobile 5 Pocket PC edition and a Windows Mobile 5 Smartphone edition. I've never paid attention enough to say that I got the names exactly right above, but it is something close. The Pocket PC edition includes those phones that have touchscreens like the XV6700 on Verizon or Sprint or the Treo 700w(x) also on Verizon or Sprint. They run just about any software developed for the Pocket PC, as comphelp indicates. The Smartphone edition includes those phones without touchscreens like the new Motorola Q on Verizon or Sprint (sorry for the iteration -- I'm a CDMA guy). These phones are not yet so robust with available software. Cachemate or GPXSonar or others should have no problem with the Pocket PC edition. I see that GPXSonar has a "proof of concept" prototype you might want to try if you have the Smartphone edition. Find the proof of concept here: http://gpxsonar.homeip.net/cs/files/12/default.aspx It says it's developed for an Audiovox, but I'll bet it would work on another manufacturer's phone because Microsoft keeps the operating system pretty standard among hardware manufacturers for these devices.
  22. I hope you're right, however, it sounds to me after reading the same thread that Mapopolis will become part of a hardware solution. I'm not interested in purchasing a separate GPS strictly for routing and would much prefer to stick to a PPC program. I agree that they had a great reputation, but I think their problem was a lack of frequent map updates. That is the only place where they made their money. Somebody pointed out that it had been a year-and-a-half since the last update.
  23. Even if they went out of business, I expect I'd continue to use my current version of Mapopolis until the maps became so outdated that I had to change. The only other one I know of that accepts customized POIs, including caches, is TomTom. I'm pretty sure it does not have the compass rose, though. You'd have to go with another non-nav software for this I would expect. I think others like Destinator, OnCourse Navigator, and iGuidance have probably caught up in item 3, I'd expect, but don't know for sure. And, all of the above have always done item 1.
  24. All Pocket PCs have sync and multi media capability, and all the ones from at least the past couple years have sd card expandability. You probably should make sure it has at least the Pocket PC 2003 operating system or newer to ensure that a full range of software will work. You might want to consider bluetooth if you are going to connect a GPS because the vast majority of receivers communicate via bluetooth. I'd steer away from a 200 mhz processor if I could, and go for at least 300 -- 400 is better, especially if you're using multimedia and other processor-intensive tasks. I'd say you can't go wrong with an ipaq or a dell. Typically, the Dells offer more features for a cheaper price, but I haven't eBayed for one of these things in a long time. Some considerations for caching. Pocket PCs are very fragile and vulnerable when dropped or used in inclimate weather. You can get an otterbox or similar, but they cost a decent bit. The battery life on a Pocket PC is only a few hours, and you can't use standard alkaline batteries. You could buy a second battery or a battery converter that does use alkalines, but they cost money, too. Also, a Pocket PC + GPS is quite a bit to carry around. Not trying to talk you out of it because there are some great mapping solutions and the such that are available, but just offering a penny or two.
  25. A brand-new, never opened Explorer Plus. Find details for the receiver here: http://www.lowrance.com/Outdoor/Products/iFINDERExplorer.asp Find details for the MapCreate software here: http://www.lowrance.com/Mapping/MapCreate63/default_topo.asp This includes the updated and latest MapCreate 6.3 topo six CD set, not the older 6.0 two CD set found frequently on eBay. It comes with the receiver, the software, a 64 MB SD card, the LEI card reader, a car power adapter, and the associated manuals. The cheapest I've been able to find this package online is $230. I'm asking $220 and I'll pony up for shipping to the U.S. I'm selling because I received it as a Christmas present and already have the software, card reader, etc., so I'm looking to replace it with a new receiver only. If not sold (very) soon, it's gonna be making an appearance on eBay.
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