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Waas Up With The New Garmin 2.60 Sw Update


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I installed the new 2.60 SW Update on my Garmin 60Csx and for the first time in the Minneapolis / MN area am getting WAAS error correction (D's in the satellite bars). I now can see satellites 48 and 51.

 

Interestingly enough my accuracy seems worse. I was regularly seeing 10 to 12 feet, now I am seeing 18 - 22 feet. I understand in concept what WAAS is doing (I have been to several web sites with detailed descriptions). Given my rudimentary understanding of the technology, I would assume the GPS accuracy would improve. It is an interesting phenom. I will test further turning off WAAS.

 

Also, I am interested in what the 2.60 update did. Why wasn't I seeing the WAAS satellites before? Why was a SW upgrade needed to enable this feature in the Minneapolis area?

 

It's great that Garmin is constantly improving the product through these updates.

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I installed the new 2.60 SW Update on my Garmin 60Csx and for the first time in the Minneapolis / MN area am getting WAAS error correction (D's in the satellite bars). I now can see satellites 48 and 51.

 

Interestingly enough my accuracy seems worse. I was regularly seeing 10 to 12 feet, now I am seeing 18 - 22 feet. I understand in concept what WAAS is doing (I have been to several web sites with detailed descriptions). Given my rudimentary understanding of the technology, I would assume the GPS accuracy would improve. It is an interesting phenom. I will test further turning off WAAS.

 

Also, I am interested in what the 2.60 update did. Why wasn't I seeing the WAAS satellites before? Why was a SW upgrade needed to enable this feature in the Minneapolis area?

 

It's great that Garmin is constantly improving the product through these updates.

 

The update (2.60) gave the SiRF chip a new 'WAAS ALMANAC' so it knew how to access the WAAS correction. Before it was just "looking everywhere blindly" so to say. I don't know whats wrong with your accuracy, perhaps you are in a more dense tree cover or in a car where you weren't before when testing? I know I get much better accuracy than I used to.

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48 and 51 are new satellites (launched late last year). They are still in a testing phase. I suspect that the Sirf firmware was set up to ignore WAAS satellites that were sending test signals. In addition, "35" was moved. What I think was happening is that the unit assumed you were not in the correct location to see the satellite so not try to use it, even though you were in range. The firmware fixed this problem.

 

It takes a good 5 minutes with the WAAS lock for the corrections to work. Anyway, from my experience with my 60Cx, the normal displayed EPE with WAAS is better than without but not as much as other Garmin models. With the 60Cx the displayed EPE drops to around 75% of pre-WAAS. With other Garmin units it is around 50%.

 

A good way to test. Set up the unit in ONE location (don't move). Allow it to sit for ten minutes to stabilize (WAAS off). Mark a waypoint and start averaging. You get a better EPE display while averaging. Let it do a set number of points (say 100) and note down the "Estimated Accuracy" displayed in the averaging window when you finish. Then turn WAAS on and again give it 10 minutes to stabilize, maybe even 15 minutes. Repeat the waypoint averaging and see what you get.

Edited by Red90
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I installed the new 2.60 SW Update on my Garmin 60Csx and for the first time in the Minneapolis / MN area am getting WAAS error correction (D's in the satellite bars). I now can see satellites 48 and 51.

 

Interestingly enough my accuracy seems worse. I was regularly seeing 10 to 12 feet, now I am seeing 18 - 22 feet. I understand in concept what WAAS is doing (I have been to several web sites with detailed descriptions). Given my rudimentary understanding of the technology, I would assume the GPS accuracy would improve. It is an interesting phenom. I will test further turning off WAAS.

 

The update (2.60) gave the SiRF chip a new 'WAAS ALMANAC' so it knew how to access the WAAS correction. Before it was just "looking everywhere blindly" so to say. I don't know whats wrong with your accuracy, perhaps you are in a more dense tree cover or in a car where you weren't before when testing? I know I get much better accuracy than I used to.

 

Actually I have also noticed (in the same areas) that after updating to the 2.60 SW I don't pick up the satellites as fast or hold them as well. I'm not saying that I've had any drops, but most of the time the strength bars aren't as high, and I've had satellites near the horizon with hollow bars with the satellite blinking, something I didn't have with 2.50, or whatever the previous version was.

 

Rick

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I did some more testing at lunch. My accuracy was 9 - 12 feet with WAAS (sometimes 48, sometimes 51). I am not sure what the problem was this morning. I will do some testing as recommended that hopefully shows greater accuracy with WAAS on. Looks like the latest SW updated has fixed WAAS in my area.

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are you seeing 48 and 51 at the same time?

 

birddog14: here the the DFW area, i see 35 for a time (three or four minutes? i need to time this), then 48 for a time, then 51 for a time... on rotation.

 

The SiRF chips only use a single channel for WAAS, so only one will be seen at a time. I do wonder why the rotation is taking place, though.

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Since updating my 60CSX w/2.60, I now can lock onto #35, #48 and #51 here in Indianapolis. All three display a solid signal bar. #51 is most commony seen, followed by #48, then #35. Yesterday, I was sitting in my car (2005 Saab 9-3 SS) in a parking lot and I was locked onto #51 w/11 other satellites showing stong signal bars and "d's" and the EPE was 8-9 ft. for about 1 hour. During this time, my 60CSX was mounted on a vent mount with the 60CSx antenna located about 2 in. below the top of the dash. Darn good performance, if you ask me and without an external antenna :anicute:

Edited by indygpser
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are you seeing 48 and 51 at the same time?

 

No, not at the same time. If I lose one (because of a building or whatever) it may lock on the other, so I have seen 51 and 48 within a couple of minutes of each other.

 

I never got WAAS locks before the 2.60 update. Its the norm now. Pretty cool.

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