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Taking Oregon on a Cruise....


edcuc
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We're going on a cruise in a few weeks and I'm planning on ordering the Oregon 400t. There are a couple of things that I would really like to do and am wondering about the feasibility of doing them.

 

1) I would like to leave the unit run for the entire cruise and save the track log.

 

2) I would like to carry it with me to geotag photos.

 

The Endura is a mighty fine looking unit and I'm having a hard time deciding between the Oregon and the potential of the Endura, however I would like to bring a unit along on the cruise.

 

Also, I found Caribbean maps and need to figure out how to get them onto a MicroSD, does anyone have any pointers on how to install third party maps onto the MicroSD?

 

Thanks

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You can do both items below but 1) might be a bit of pain given the battery life of the Oregon (12-15hrs with good NiMH batteries) and the fact that you'll probably need to leave the unit someplace out in the open unless your cabin has good outside view toward the sky (most cabins I've seen don't have a good upward view). If you are lucky and have an outlet near a window I guess you could leave the unit running on AC power if you have a USB power adapter to cut down on battery use, otherwise bring 3-4 sets of AA NiMH batteries and a good charger.

 

The unit will work fine for geotagging, you just need to synchronize the camera and the GPS at the beginning of the vacation and any time you move to a new timezone because the unit will change timezones automatically but the camera probably won't.

 

I'm assuming you found Richard Smith's Caribbean maps. The new version (2.1) is very good, I just used it on a trip to Nevis and St. Kitts and found it helpful (and accurate) during several hikes and the road data was pretty good too.

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The Oregon preforms much better indoors than my older explorist.

 

But it was the explorist I had on my last cruise.

For when I was on board the ship I improvised a cradle to keep it by the porthole and that worked quit well.

 

I used the ac charger.

 

Also, I'd checked ahead and created a custom POI to use on the cruise. The caibbean probably has a few you can add.

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The Oregon preforms much better indoors than my older explorist.

 

But it was the explorist I had on my last cruise.

For when I was on board the ship I improvised a cradle to keep it by the porthole and that worked quit well.

 

I used the ac charger.

 

Also, I'd checked ahead and created a custom POI to use on the cruise. The caibbean probably has a few you can add.

 

Thanks for the answers. I assume the unit can be powered via the mini usb connection. Will it charge batteries through the mini USB connection as well? I do have a room with a porthole so I'll try to to get the unit close to it for reception. I forgot all about different time zones, thanks for reminding me.

 

I do have the Caribbean Map from the link above I guess I need to wait till I get the Oregon in hand before I try figure out how to load custom maps onto it.

 

I purchased the unit from Amazon 2 days ago and it's scheduled to be delivered today, now I have to decide whether or not it's worth it to return and repurchase it for the $50 rebate. I've never returned anything to Amazon so I need to figure out restocking information for an unopened package.

 

Did you get a good track log from your cruise? I've been on a couple of cruises in the past and always wanted to get a track log for some reason.

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Yes the unit will run powered off the USB port whether it is plugged into a computer or an AC adapter. You will need to make sure that the Interface setting is set to "Garmin Spanner", details in the Oregon wiki linked below.

 

In order to use the maps below you'll need to install Garmin Mapsource if you don't already have it. Once you have Mapsource installed it is simply a matter of installing the Caribbean maps which will allow you to see the maps in Mapsource and install them to the Oregon.

 

I've actually never taken a cruise so I really can't give much first hand experience, just what I've seen from others and read about.

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Yes the unit will run powered off the USB port whether it is plugged into a computer or an AC adapter. You will need to make sure that the Interface setting is set to "Garmin Spanner", details in the Oregon wiki linked below.

 

In order to use the maps below you'll need to install Garmin Mapsource if you don't already have it. Once you have Mapsource installed it is simply a matter of installing the Caribbean maps which will allow you to see the maps in Mapsource and install them to the Oregon.

 

I've actually never taken a cruise so I really can't give much first hand experience, just what I've seen from others and read about.

 

Thanks for all of your help, I'm sooo looking forward to playing with this.

 

Also, a big kudos to Amazon. I called them up and told them about the rebate and that I haven't even received the unit yet. They sent me a pre-paid shipping label and told me to return this unit and repurchase so I could get the rebate.

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If you have a balcony cabin it will make a perfect track as long as it can 'see' outside in a broad as possible view. Remember the difference in temp between in and outside and humidity at night while sailing does not allway make your gps very happy.

 

Tell you cabin attendant NOT TO TOUCH the gps, they tend to clean up everything, check what happens with the electricy once you leave the cabin.

 

While waiting you can download and install mapsource, so you can fiddle with the map.

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edcuc,

 

If you are going to bring a laptop to power the new unit for track recording you could also Ebay a good used Delorme LT-20. I've seen these and the Street Atlas software that comes with them go for like $30 shipped. The LT-20 is just a little antenna with a USB cord on the other end. You could tape it to the porthole and record the track on the SA software.

 

Save the new Garmin for when you land at ports. I'm quite sure there is a way to convert this Delorme format track back to whatever file type your Garmin software uses once you get back home.

 

The version of SA2007 I have has detail road info for the US and major road info for the rest of the planet. Just a suggestion.

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That's a good idea.

Although I don't get a big enough bagage allowance from the OH for our trips to add a laptop :D

 

Apparantly an Ipod dock + ipod, D-SLR, GPSr, shaver, + their power adaptors is quite enough without adding a laptop B)

Edited by kevenh
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Prior to returning to Amazon to get the rebate, you may want to check the price. I have been tracking the price of the Oregon on Amazon and the price has increased nearly $100 which would outweigh the benefit of the rebate.

 

Not sure where you are seeing that but compared to earlier this week (before the rebate came out) the 200 has actually dropped $20 and the 300 another $10 after the rebate. The 200 can be had for about $175 now on Amazon with the rebate.

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edcuc,

 

If you are going to bring a laptop to power the new unit for track recording you could also Ebay a good used Delorme LT-20. I've seen these and the Street Atlas software that comes with them go for like $30 shipped. The LT-20 is just a little antenna with a USB cord on the other end. You could tape it to the porthole and record the track on the SA software.

 

Save the new Garmin for when you land at ports. I'm quite sure there is a way to convert this Delorme format track back to whatever file type your Garmin software uses once you get back home.

 

The version of SA2007 I have has detail road info for the US and major road info for the rest of the planet. Just a suggestion.

 

You tend to forget, the Caraibean is not Us, street atlas shows only Us territory besides that , the FREE map mentiond above is almost perfect for a cruise and I don't think there's a good altenative to garmin, dispite the problems many user have with the soft-hardware and service on the moment.

Edited by splashy
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That's a good idea.

Although I don't get a big enough bagage allowance from the OH for our trips to add a laptop B)

 

Apparantly an Ipod dock + ipod, D-SLR, GPSr, shaver, + their power adaptors is quite enough without adding a laptop :D

 

You should see my "half" of the closet. :D

 

Besides luggage allowances are now pretty pathetic so we only carrying essentials.

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You may be disappointed in the reception you get with only a porthole stateroom. When we did our Alaska cruise, we had an oceanview stateroom (port hole), and I literally couldn't get reception AT ALL with a Garmin 60CSx.

 

I have much better luck with balcony staterooms, but even then I have had periods of time where it'll lose the signal with both the 60CSx and my Colorado. The only time you get a really, really decent signal is up on the top deck.

 

When we have balcony rooms, I leave the GPS outside all the time to keep a track log of the trip -- it is a fun keepsake! I bring a battery charger along, and I switch the batteries out a couple times a day.

 

A previous poster had mentioned telling your stateroom attendant to leave the GPS alone... they're right on the money on that advice! Our attendant (a very sweet lady) brought mine in the one night during our Christmas cruise this year, and I nearly had a heart attack, thinking it was missing!

 

I am also into geotagging photos... if you have the right camera (I have a Nikon D300), you can hook the GPS right up to the camera and automatically record the lat/long into the EXIF of the image. I found a relatively inexpensive (<$150) GPS attachment that does a really nice job for this purpose.

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edcuc,

 

If you are going to bring a laptop to power the new unit for track recording you could also Ebay a good used Delorme LT-20. I've seen these and the Street Atlas software that comes with them go for like $30 shipped. The LT-20 is just a little antenna with a USB cord on the other end. You could tape it to the porthole and record the track on the SA software.

 

Save the new Garmin for when you land at ports. I'm quite sure there is a way to convert this Delorme format track back to whatever file type your Garmin software uses once you get back home.

 

The version of SA2007 I have has detail road info for the US and major road info for the rest of the planet. Just a suggestion.

 

You tend to forget, the Caraibean is not Us, street atlas shows only Us territory besides that , the FREE map mentiond above is almost perfect for a cruise and I don't think there's a good altenative to garmin, dispite the problems many user have with the soft-hardware and service on the moment.

 

Never been on a cruise myself. Just assumed that a laptop would be along for the trip to power the new Garmin. A bud of mine uses uses one of those LT-20's for business travel with his laptop. He routes with it and records travel mileage. He likes it a lot.

 

I've seen these selling for cheap and just figured it could record ship travel while leaving the handheld free for port excursions.

 

As far as using these out of the US....it still records where you are regardless of your location in the world. It does have a world basemap. The recorded track log could be either stored in the laptop on the SA software or converted later to something the Garmin mapping software could use.

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You may be disappointed in the reception you get with only a porthole stateroom. When we did our Alaska cruise, we had an oceanview stateroom (port hole), and I literally couldn't get reception AT ALL with a Garmin 60CSx.

 

I have much better luck with balcony staterooms, but even then I have had periods of time where it'll lose the signal with both the 60CSx and my Colorado. The only time you get a really, really decent signal is up on the top deck.

 

When we have balcony rooms, I leave the GPS outside all the time to keep a track log of the trip -- it is a fun keepsake! I bring a battery charger along, and I switch the batteries out a couple times a day.

 

A previous poster had mentioned telling your stateroom attendant to leave the GPS alone... they're right on the money on that advice! Our attendant (a very sweet lady) brought mine in the one night during our Christmas cruise this year, and I nearly had a heart attack, thinking it was missing!

 

I am also into geotagging photos... if you have the right camera (I have a Nikon D300), you can hook the GPS right up to the camera and automatically record the lat/long into the EXIF of the image. I found a relatively inexpensive (<$150) GPS attachment that does a really nice job for this purpose.

 

I too have a D300. Are you saying you can connect the Garmin up to the camera or a different aftermarket one? I saw the aftermarket one that connects to the hot shoe, I don't think the wife will tolerate another GPS purchase just yet.

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I too have a D300. Are you saying you can connect the Garmin up to the camera or a different aftermarket one? I saw the aftermarket one that connects to the hot shoe, I don't think the wife will tolerate another GPS purchase just yet.

 

Cool... with the D300 you can go a couple different directions. Initially, I bought a Nikon cable (it's an MC-35) that I could use to directly connect my Garmin to the D300. That worked very well, although I found the combination to be a bit bulky. It's ok, but there's a lot of cable and it's kinda awkward.

 

A few months ago I found the "Macsense Geomet'r" receiver, which plugs directly into the D300, and can be mounted right onto the hotshoe. It connects through the 10-pin adapter (like the MC-35 cord does). I velcro my Geomet'r to the camera strap, and it's not cumbersome at all. I like this combination a lot, and use it for vacations, etc.

 

As an example, I posted a bunch of our Christmas cruise photos on Picasa, which can automatically create maps based on the EXIF data: http://picasaweb.google.com/alansfreed/ChristmasCruise#

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I too have a D300. Are you saying you can connect the Garmin up to the camera or a different aftermarket one? I saw the aftermarket one that connects to the hot shoe, I don't think the wife will tolerate another GPS purchase just yet.

 

Cool... with the D300 you can go a couple different directions. Initially, I bought a Nikon cable (it's an MC-35) that I could use to directly connect my Garmin to the D300. That worked very well, although I found the combination to be a bit bulky. It's ok, but there's a lot of cable and it's kinda awkward.

 

A few months ago I found the "Macsense Geomet'r" receiver, which plugs directly into the D300, and can be mounted right onto the hotshoe. It connects through the 10-pin adapter (like the MC-35 cord does). I velcro my Geomet'r to the camera strap, and it's not cumbersome at all. I like this combination a lot, and use it for vacations, etc.

 

As an example, I posted a bunch of our Christmas cruise photos on Picasa, which can automatically create maps based on the EXIF data: http://picasaweb.google.com/alansfreed/ChristmasCruise#

 

I looked through your pictures and had to chuckle. I'm from Pittsburgh and am sailing on the Independence too. Was on Freedom a couple of years ago, but am still a fan of Serenade. The wife and kids like the mega ships better so all's good. I would really like to get the Macsense Geomet'r but will wait a few months before I try to sneak the buy past the wife. Did you have any problem with condensation forming on your lenses? I had a 20D that was very problematic in the Caribbean, condensation would form on the backside of the lens. I know the D300 is supposed to be weather sealed so I'm hoping internal condensation will be minimized. Also, what lenses do you use? I just dumped Canon and moved to Nikon so I'm rather new to the Nikon scene.

 

Thanks for the information!

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Geez, are you sure we're not related?!? :D

 

I've never had any trouble with condensation at all, with any camera I've taken on cruises. The only exception was my video camera many years ago, which had a "dew warning" indicator that came on during one cruise. I doubt you'd have an issue unless you went from a steamy hot balcony into a really strongly air conditioned room, or something like that.

 

The best lens I've had for vacationing is the Nikon 18-200 VR. On this most recent cruise, I very rarely took it off the camera. It's a great lens since it has such a wide range. I used my Sigma 10-20 a couple times for some super wide angle shots, but otherwise I left the 18-200 on it all the time.

 

I looked through your pictures and had to chuckle. I'm from Pittsburgh and am sailing on the Independence too. Was on Freedom a couple of years ago, but am still a fan of Serenade. The wife and kids like the mega ships better so all's good. I would really like to get the Macsense Geomet'r but will wait a few months before I try to sneak the buy past the wife. Did you have any problem with condensation forming on your lenses? I had a 20D that was very problematic in the Caribbean, condensation would form on the backside of the lens. I know the D300 is supposed to be weather sealed so I'm hoping internal condensation will be minimized. Also, what lenses do you use? I just dumped Canon and moved to Nikon so I'm rather new to the Nikon scene.

 

Thanks for the information!

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Not sure where you are seeing that but compared to earlier this week (before the rebate came out) the 200 has actually dropped $20 and the 300 another $10 after the rebate. The 200 can be had for about $175 now on Amazon with the rebate.

 

$321.49 today for the 200.

$389.84 for the 300.

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