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Lowrance GPS software


azbigben

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I just got a Lowrance Ifinder expedition C and found to my dismay that it only comes with basic software installed. After reading may of the input here and on other sites decided there must be a better software available out-there. So after looking aournd on the Internet I found a software package called ExpertGPS by Topgrafix. Anyone out there had any experiance with this software or any other.

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I just got a Lowrance Ifinder expedition C and found to my dismay that it only comes with basic software installed. After reading may of the input here and on other sites decided there must be a better software available out-there. So after looking aournd on the Internet I found a software package called ExpertGPS by Topgrafix. Anyone out there had any experiance with this software or any other.

I think when you say software you mean maps. The iFinders come with a base map for the world. If you want street level maps for the USA you need MapCreate which is the same as Mapsource is for the Garmins. As another poster said, download the free EasyGPS for handling waypoints.

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Yes I'm talking about map software that creates the maps for the GPS unit. What I'm saying when I say better all the posts that I have read about mapcreate speak of the the problems with the card reader/writer the 5 card limit on registering and the basic problems of getting the data from the software on the computer to the GPS unit. :D

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Hi azbigben

 

I don't read all the posts here so I'm not sure exactly what the nature of the gripes are but I have used Lowrance GPSRs for several years along with the Mapcreate software and I have not experienced any problems.

 

5 card limit - Unless you create a very wide array of maps and store each one on a separate card you are not likely to find this limit all that much of a problem. There is also at least one post on this forum that provides a work around for the limit.

 

Getting your custom maps to your GPS is simply a matter of putting the SD card in the Lowrance reader, saving your map and then putting the card in your GPS. The process is very straight forward and simple. Lowrance provides a fairly decent user manual with the software so I'm not sure what the problem could be.

 

Lowrance also has great customer support.

 

Perhaps you could provide some additional detail on what the issues are with the software then other readers here could reply with more complete advice.

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I agree it would be nice to have a second source of software to easily "CREATE" maps for the Ifinder from other Non Lowrance data and not just cookie cut them from the MapCreate cd's. That being said I don't find the MapCreate data all that bad. I use the 6.3 Topo and for my uses it serves me well. The problems with the 5 card limit and the CD in the drive to start the program are minor and if you look hard enuff there are workarounds for both. I have one card registered that has never had a map loaded on it and a dozen unregistered cards I use in the GPSr containing coast to coast maps. I have my original software put away and start the program without the need to have a cd in the drive. I have had no issues with my cardreader in the 2 and a half years I have used the software. The only issue with the software I have is the data is getting old and the new roads and POI's are a little out of date. I'm patiently waiting for the MC 7.0 Can Topo to come out. The only other software I frequently use are GPS Trackmaker to manipulate track data , cut and merge tracks and another GPSU (GPS Utility) to transfer waypoints tracks and routes to my other 3 non Lowrance GPSr's and print maps from scanned media. The Ifinder is a great unit and MapCreate easy to use. Don't let a couple of minor annoyances turn you sour on it.

 

Mike

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I just got a Lowrance Ifinder expedition C and found to my dismay that it only comes with basic software installed. After reading may of the input here and on other sites decided there must be a better software available out-there. So after looking aournd on the Internet I found a software package called ExpertGPS by Topgrafix. Anyone out there had any experiance with this software or any other.

 

Like several other posters here, I haven't had any problems with Mapcreate, either. The five card "limit" is really a misnomer. I've had the program for over a year now, and traveled all over the US, but have registered only one card. Maps can be deleted and new maps added -- the only limit is the longevity of the SD card itself.

 

Personally, I think $100 for detailed maps of the entire US is a pretty good deal, and there's no mapping program out there that will render every geographical detail in every single square mile perfectly. Mapcreate gets pretty close, though.

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You can use any card reader to put .usr files (the waypoint files) onto the card. You only need the LEI card reader to do maps.

 

Actually, you do not need the LEI card reader at all. At least for the iFinder Expedition C you don't. Just insert a memory card in the GPS and select Menu -> Menu -> Browse MMC Files -> MMC Card Info (button at bottom of screen) -> Create ID File. The card needs to be registered with Mapcreate, but you will never need the LEI reader.

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I just got a Lowrance Ifinder expedition C and found to my dismay that it only comes with basic software installed. After reading may of the input here and on other sites decided there must be a better software available out-there. So after looking aournd on the Internet I found a software package called ExpertGPS by Topgrafix. Anyone out there had any experiance with this software or any other.

azbigben,

Check out this thread. It talks about how to get around the 5 card limit in Mapcreate among other things.

http://forums.Groundspeak.com/GC/index.php...115044&st=0

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Is there any way to get a street level map of Japan on a Lowrance or does Mapcreate only cover the US?

 

Here's an option that might work for you. There is a website where people post custom-made maps for Garmin units. These are easy to convert to Lowrance .lcm files and I've done it in the past using the lcmMapEdit program that you can find at the Yahoo user group here. While the custom map website has three city maps listed for Japan, it isn't comprehensive of the country. Nonetheless, it's probably more than you've found so far.

 

You just have to download and install lcmMapEdit, download the desired Garmin map, load the map into lcmMapEdit, change the map properties from Garmin to Lowrance, export the map to .lcm, and load it on the SD card. The iFinder should automatically load and display the map when you start it up.

 

There are probably also several additional sites where you could find detail maps that could be converted, but I haven't gotten past the one cited above. There are also ways to make your own custom maps from free, publicly-available data, but this is a complicated process. There's lots of posts here related to gathering and compiling this data for Garmin units. I'm confident you could use the same process and just use the lcmMapEdit program instead of the MapEdit program that Garmin users have.

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