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Garmin Chirp- Geocaching Beacon

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How useful do you think this thing's gonna be? I saw one of these for the first time today at REI. It's only $20, which ain't bad I guess. One of the websites likes the idea of putting it in a locked box, and have the beacon transmit the code to the lock. That's pretty cool I guess. Obviously only useful to Garmin Oregon, Dakota, and 62 users.

 

So, good idea? Bad idea? Any other creative uses ideas for me when I pick one up?

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Giving it some thought, I don't see a use for a normal cache, but I could imagine some puzzle caches where it could be fun (puzzle allows for somewhat imprecise coordinates). The 1 year battery life is certainly a plus.

 

Only problem is, as you noted, not all Garmin devices incorporate the ANT technology, so would appeal to only a limited number of users. Kind of the same issues as with Wherigo from that standpoint.

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I don't see this on the Garmin website.....

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I don't see this on the Garmin website.....

 

I know. Weird, isn't it? I was REALLY surprised to find them (a LOT of them) at an REI, with NO info on the Garmin website. I had to get my info from some review in Kenya.

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Even more strange that they haven't released any GPS software that works with the chirp. I'm guessing we'll seem something tomorrow from Garmin and REI just got ahead of themselves a little.

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I see tons of potential for these

heading to REI tomorrow and will keep checking Garmin site as well

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Even more strange that they haven't released any GPS software that works with the chirp. I'm guessing we'll seem something tomorrow from Garmin and REI just got ahead of themselves a little.

 

I'm not sure I understand what you mean. It works with Garmin GPSrs that have the ANT technology. I don't think any other software is necessary. At least, that's how I interpreted what I read on these Chirps.

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My first impression was: completely useless? What are the advantages of this product? But I thought from a geocacher finder view, not a geocache creator. I think it is a nice little gadget for creative cache creators and event-organisators with a high range of applications for geocaching.

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Not available to ship to Canada :blink:

Edited by Zor
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Not available to ship to Canada :mad:

Nor to Europe... :mad:

 

I am currrently preparing a wifi-cache. My router can do unencrypted wifi (I know, they all can do it :mad:), but on top of that, it can be configured to allow only access to one single domain. So I wanted to do a mystery/multi, where cachers had to solve some questions, finding coordinates in front of our apartment building, and had to enter the found webpage through my router. PHP would give the final coordinates only to people coming through my IP.

 

But, with this 'Chirp', this could be done much easier. For non-Garmin users, an automated reply on a certain email-address would be nice... :blink:

 

But I think I'll have to wait half a year before the Chirp will be available in Europe. :mad:

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Not so sure about the availability. Seems to show up on the Garmin Canada and UK sites, and GarminUK tweeted about it this a.m.

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Too limited an audience. I'd not want to limit finders to those who own a compatible GPS.

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I'm not sure I understand what you mean. It works with Garmin GPSrs that have the ANT technology. I don't think any other software is necessary. At least, that's how I interpreted what I read on these Chirps.

Need to look much closer at the specs, but unless it's sending a *.gpx style record, the Garmin handhelds won't know what to do with the data. Just because the Chirp sends over the ANT system, it doesn't mean a Garmin handheld knows how to interpret what's coming across. Otherwise, your Oregon would be responding to anything using that technology.
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Too limited an audience. I'd not want to limit finders to those who own a compatible GPS.

 

I thought about that. I also kayak and hide caches, but I don't feel bad about the ones who don't kayak finding my caches. :blink: It's a big old playground out there. And there is something for everyone. I might find something interesting to do with it maybe not caching related. Then again......

 

I can't pass up the chance to play with one of these. I'm am a big ole Geek! :mad:

Edited by Freekacher
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Man - this little unit is wicked. Folks are gonna have Garmin envy. P

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So if this unit broadcast using the ANT transmitter, wouldn't it be possible to create software on other devices to receive the info? I know the iphone uses the ANT protocol to communicate with the Nike+ unit for running, so in theory at least its possible. I think the bigger the audience for this device the better the response.

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*subscribed

 

Gizmodo Article: http://gizmodo.com/5664904/play-hide+and+s...a-years-battery

 

It seems like a cool enough idea. There are already caches for members only, and in remote locations like Freekacher was talking about. I for one, welcome our new Garmin overlords. Too bad I own a Venture HC.

Edited by ILdylan
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The latest update for the Oregon 550 has added the chirp searching/programming options.

132.jpg

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Man - this little unit is wicked. Folks are gonna have Garmin envy. P

Nah. The range is ~10 feet. I'm happy with my PN-60/Spot combo.

Edited by TotemLake
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Nah. The range is ~10 feet. I'm happy with my PN-60/Spot combo.

Garmin claims 3X that (10 meters).
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Interesting idea but still a little expensive to use on a several stage multi.

 

And they need to develop a battery that lasts longer than a year.

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I can see us getting one (next time I am in the US) and building a Chirpy Cache

 

Appeals to the geeks in us all

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One of the websites likes the idea of putting it in a locked box, and have the beacon transmit the code to the lock. That's pretty cool I guess.

The specs say not to put it in a metal box so you'd have to use a wooden or plastic one (no ammo cans).

 

Obviously only useful to Garmin Oregon, Dakota, and 62 users.

I'm still angry that they've dropped support for my Colorado.

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I got the blog posts in my RSS feed this morning from gpsfix and Garmin on this. It looks really cool, and I think I'm going to have to conceive myself a cache to use this in.

 

I don't think it will work in the cache I'm scouting a location for tomorrow, though. It's going to be a high difficulty/terrain cache in an area prone to extensive flooding in the springtime, and local regulations prohibit the cache from being submerged. I have a hard time envisioning a practical use for this device unless I turn this thing into a multi and put the chirp as a stage some distance away.

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I like this idea. While I hope not every cache will have chirp, I certainly welcome something new.

 

How about a puzzle cache, that simply says, 'walk such-and-such path and wait for a chirp signal.' Just another variant of figuring out the final location while in the field. It would also be cool as a multi with instructions to, 'walk 300 paces due east, for the next chirp' for example.

 

Good work Garmin.

 

Someone write an iphone chirp app already (don't actually know if this is possible or not with the iphone hardware).

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I just saw it on the gpscity.ca website on the frontpage. It's listed at $22.95 Pre-Order

 

Not available to ship to Canada :blink:

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Someone write an iphone chirp app already (don't actually know if this is possible or not with the iphone hardware).

 

It's a Garmin product, so that's probably unlikely. However, if anyone is going to release an iphone app that supports it, I would expect the official Geocaching app to offer support in an update.

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One of the websites likes the idea of putting it in a locked box, and have the beacon transmit the code to the lock. That's pretty cool I guess.

The specs say not to put it in a metal box so you'd have to use a wooden or plastic one (no ammo cans).

 

Around here we have a thief or thieves who are stealing all the ammo boxes anyway so people tend not to use them as much as they used to.

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no cellphone supports ANT wireless, so you will not see an iphone or android app that will use chirp

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Man - this little unit is wicked. Folks are gonna have Garmin envy. P

Nah. The range is ~10 feet. I'm happy with my PN-60/Spot combo.

 

First, the range is closer to 40 ft. Second, you're comparing apples to oranges. The two do not do even close to the same thing.

 

I bought one today. It's going in a cache next week, but how is what I'm not sure of just yet. It will be cool though. At least for anyone with a GPS with ANT...

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Man - this little unit is wicked. Folks are gonna have Garmin envy. P

Nah. The range is ~10 feet. I'm happy with my PN-60/Spot combo.

 

First, the range is closer to 40 ft. Second, you're comparing apples to oranges. The two do not do even close to the same thing.

 

I bought one today. It's going in a cache next week, but how is what I'm not sure of just yet. It will be cool though. At least for anyone with a GPS with ANT...

Well the range was based on the review I read.

 

Second, I was responding to the garmin envy and the reason I wasn't going to be envious. Don't get pissy about it.

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I just ordered two of them. I really need to figure out a placement. I have some containers sitting around waiting for something.

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...no cellphone supports ANT wireless, ....
Not entirely accurate. http://www.thisisant.com/news/stories/ant-...phonetrade-apps and http://www.apple.com/ipod/nike/ are two examples. Although you could say ANT support isn't native. You need the vendors' ANT dongle connected to the iPhone's dock connector.

 

...so you will not see an iphone or android app that will use chirp
Conjecture. Best you could say is "not at the moment" -- and after that it would be up to Garmin and other partners. Edited by lee_rimar
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...The range is ~10 feet ... based on the review I read. ...
That could be useful to know. I would expect range to vary with placement and conditions, and the one real review (not marketing blurb) I've read so far confirms that. GPSFIX.net http://www.gpsfix.net/garmin-chirp-review/ gives numbers well on either side of 10' ...
...When I placed the chirp on one side of a tree trunk I would consistently connect within about 20′-30′ if I was facing the chirp. However, approaching with the tree between me and chirp required be within 5′ to be receive the chirp alert.
Edited by lee_rimar
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Don't get pissy about it.

 

It wasn't meant to be a pissy comment. Just a statement.

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The latest update for the Oregon 550 has added the chirp searching/programming options.

132.jpg

 

Is that 374?

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I know that the CO is now a discontinued model, but here is hoping that they show some love for all the units out there, and add this in a CO firmware update as well.

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The latest update for the Oregon 550 has added the chirp searching/programming options.

 

Is that 374?

 

You need 4.10 for the x00 Oregon and 4.00 for the x50 Oregon to pick up chirp support. Run webupdater to install it.

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Seems like these things will probably have an innate ability to grow legs and hop out of the cache when you aren't looking.....

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Seems like these things will probably have an innate ability to grow legs and hop out of the cache when you aren't looking.....

 

Unless someone figures out how to hack them they aren't of much value to anyone else other than the person who owns the GPS that programmed the chirp. After you program the chirp it becomes locked to that GPS.

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Seems like these things will probably have an innate ability to grow legs and hop out of the cache when you aren't looking.....

 

Unless someone figures out how to hack them they aren't of much value to anyone else other than the person who owns the GPS that programmed the chirp. After you program the chirp it becomes locked to that GPS.

 

Sounds pretty cool. Maybe you could put it behind a gate or out of view so only users would know it was there. No one needs physical access to it.

 

Just ran the Oregon 300/400 update to 4.1 Looks like they changed the Geocaches logo too.

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The specs say not to put it in a metal box so you'd have to use a wooden or plastic one (no ammo cans).

 

You don't need to necessarily put it in the cache. Hanging it in a nearby tree would still do the trick.

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In the danish geocaching-forum one of the rewievers made this post yesterday:

 

Garmin Chirp has been discussed in the Rewiever Forum, Groundspeak has made a clear statement:

 

If a cache requires this device, it is commercial and therefore not publishable.

 

If there is an alternative to the Garmin Chirp (like a label with the same info) it is ok to use the Chirp transmitter.

 

(the quote is the original - the rest is translated from danish).

 

NeverWalkAlone

Edited by NeverWalkAlone
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I'm afraid the new Chirp device is something very exclusive to Garmin, which brings it into conflict with our commercial guidelines. To be publishable, the cache needs to be findable with any type of GPS device, and the Chirp method must be optional. Please come up with an alternative option to do this cache which does not require a Chirp compatible device. After you have done this, please enable your cache and I will look at it again.

Thank you for your understanding,

XXXX XXXXXX

Geocaching.com Volunteer Reviewer

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Well what about Wherigo Caches - I cant´t find them with my Garmin Dakota. Must there be an alternative method to find those caches...?

Edited by Justus_Jonas
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Well what about Wherigo Caches - I cant´t find them with my Garmin Dakota. Must there be an alternative method to find those caches...?

 

Good point. And what's the difference with the new UV Light Required attribute ?

Edited by towtrkdug
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