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Old 09-13-2015, 07:40 PM   #1
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Navigation software

Hi all, need all of your recommendations for laptop navigation software. Currently I have an old version of Chartview which still works well. Thinking of updating but to what? Thanks
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Old 09-13-2015, 08:29 PM   #2
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If you use Active Captain, Polar Navy looks to be a good choice for $50. Went through their online user video and decided to give it a try. Ordered it on disc with charts for $70. You can download charts for free, but I decided this might be a faster restore if I had to redo it away from cable internet. Haven't used it yet, but should be playing with it in the next few days. If for some reason I don't like it, there seem to be several other choices.

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Old 09-16-2015, 05:12 AM   #3
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I have been using a ipad with Navionics the last few years, and It works really well, I even have a waterproof mount for it on the fly bridge My Boats Gear

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Old 10-02-2015, 10:52 AM   #4
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Been using navionics on the iPad. Works great. Just used coastal explorer up in BC for 3 weeks. Loved it as well. Lots of added info with active captain. Easy to use for trip planning.
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Old 10-02-2015, 11:07 AM   #5
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For your laptop, try OpenCPN. It's free, has been around for a while and has good support.

OpenCPN | Official OpenCPN Homepage
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Old 10-02-2015, 12:35 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gbinterim View Post
Hi all, need all of your recommendations for laptop navigation software.
After pinging this and two other boating forums, I just purchased and installed Rose Point's Coastal Explorer (CE), and also purchased the CHS mapset for BC, Canada.

I am super impressed with it in every respect. I previously used Garmin's HomePort. HomePort is of course "free" (once you have purchased a Garmin system), and may initially seem easier to use, but the chart handling, route planning and instrumentation options available in CE are impressive and blow HomePort out of the water. Extremely good Windows integration, highly configurable, CE is great example of why it makes sense to actually purchase software. You can download a free, limited-function 10-day trial from the Rose Point website:

Coastal Explorer - Marine Navigation Software

. . . and there is a decent one-hour overview training video as well:

Coastal Explorer - Marine Navigation Software


Good hunting!

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Old 10-02-2015, 01:22 PM   #7
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Coastal Explorer. Fast, stable, outstanding support, highly capable.
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Old 10-02-2015, 02:30 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gbinterim View Post
Hi all, need all of your recommendations for laptop navigation software. Currently I have an old version of Chartview which still works well. Thinking of updating but to what? Thanks

Might be influenced by whether you're trying to integrate that into a network (autopilot, radar, whatever) or not.

For standalone systems, we have MaxSea Time Zero on the laptop, and MX Mariner and Plan2Nav both on two tablets.


All with ActiveCaptain integrated.

Networking would get more complicated by the connections -- wired or wireless, NMEA 0183 or 2000 or both -- etc., but in our case the MX TZ is because our plotter essentially runs the same software engine and uses the same charts. If your network is a different brand-centric (Garmin, Ray, whatever) the selections could change...

-Chris
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Old 10-02-2015, 06:36 PM   #9
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Coastal Explorer, I never leave home without it. But, I also have Garmin Bluecharts and Navionics on IOS. On Coastal Explorer, I have added an NMEA 183 multiplexer to handle AIS and a NMEA2000 gateway to access GPS and sounder data. It is very flexible. If you have Internet access while underway, it will import weather data. With Active Captain and Coastal Pilot only a click away, the amount of information available is enormous. It can also view topo maps and aerial photos but, I haven't completely explored that area. I just wish they would support multiple sessions/windows on the same computer so on one monitor I could do dynamic planning Active Captain searches and have navigation on the other.
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Old 10-03-2015, 11:54 AM   #10
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Navigation software

I have Coastal Explorer on a windows XP machine which is isolated from the internet. I've been very happy with it. I will upgrade when the new CHS charts are out for Haida Gwaii and the Central Coast of BC. This is on a Paxcom computer. I met Peter (Twisted Tree) in Port McNeil this past summer. Despite his handle, he's really not that "Twisted" and provided me with many helpful ideas.


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Old 10-03-2015, 01:48 PM   #11
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Another vote of confidence for Rose Point Navigation's Coastal Explorer (CE). I sent a query to their tech support team asking if they were aware of any issues with running CE under Windows 10 on a Microsoft Surface Pro 3 (a fine multi-touch table/ultrabook IMHO), to include any known driver or compatibility issues with their Portable GPS Sensor and USB-to-NMEA2000 Gateway/Bridge.

I received a detailed reply (no issues at it turned out) within 30 minutes of my sending. I've seen others comment on Rose Point's responsive support team, though only an "N=1" sample, my initial experience with them confirms this, most impressive.

Best Regards,

MikeP
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Old 10-03-2015, 05:25 PM   #12
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We use OpenCPN on an old work-discard laptop. Works well with our AIS and on our old-spec machine. OpenCPN picks up the GPS position from our AIS so no extra GPS interface is reqired. There are many other free plug-ins for integration with other components (Radar, weather, etc) but have not tried those. It is free, so worth a try to see what you think.

We also use Navionics on an iPad for redundancy and mobility around the boat. It is faster than OpenCPN for quick route planning once the $5 addon is purchased.

Both have their Pros and Cons, but back to your original question I suggest giving OpenCPN a whirl. Free and good functionality - and it doesn't often get better that that!
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Old 10-08-2015, 05:20 PM   #13
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Just to agree with others, navionics on the iPad works great!
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Old 10-09-2015, 11:35 PM   #14
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Another vote for Coastal Explorer. We have it on a laptop with a GPS antenna as a backup to our Raymarine chartplotter. Very easy to use.
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Old 10-10-2015, 02:05 AM   #15
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Navionics on the iPad works great, unless your iPad dies. And I'm not talking about running out of battery power. I saw the fabled "blue screen of death" wipe across the screen mere seconds after leaving the VERY narrow entrance to Smuggler Cove Provincial Park in BC - at low tide. Of course we had back up paper charts, etc. But had the iPad died 30 seconds earlier while still in the middle of maneuvering through the rocks, I might have had one of those sphincter-tightening moments you would much rather avoid. Still love Navionics, though (and are very happy we opted for the extended replacement warranty when we bought the iPad almost two years ago at Best Buy - we now have a brand new one).
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Old 10-10-2015, 08:12 AM   #16
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Last spring we compared CE to Trident when getting our new navigation laptop. Lots of coin flips with Trident Nobeltec winning out. During this past cruising season we ran both our older VNS based laptop and the new Trident on double duty. Our take is the new Nobeltec is more user friendly than the old, no doubt CE is too.
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Old 10-10-2015, 08:19 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Moonfish View Post
Navionics on the iPad works great, unless your iPad dies. And I'm not talking about running out of battery power. I saw the fabled "blue screen of death" wipe across the screen mere seconds after leaving the VERY narrow entrance to Smuggler Cove Provincial Park in BC - at low tide. Of course we had back up paper charts, etc. But had the iPad died 30 seconds earlier while still in the middle of maneuvering through the rocks, I might have had one of those sphincter-tightening moments you would much rather avoid. Still love Navionics, though (and are very happy we opted for the extended replacement warranty when we bought the iPad almost two years ago at Best Buy - we now have a brand new one).
Our IPad Navionics set up works great when we are on other's vessels as a "where are we" answer. But for our own boat we like using the IPad's tide and current data leaving more rigorous course (and reliability) work to the plotter and laptop.
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Old 10-10-2015, 12:11 PM   #18
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We are thinking of using an IPad as a backup to our navigation system. We spend our summers in Alaska and wondered if you or anyone else uses the IPad with Navinoics with confidence? Do you know how frequently the IPad processes the gps information? Is there any additional hardware or software to make the system effective?
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Old 10-10-2015, 01:02 PM   #19
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We are thinking of using an IPad as a backup to our navigation system. We spend our summers in Alaska and wondered if you or anyone else uses the IPad with Navinoics with confidence? Do you know how frequently the IPad processes the gps information? Is there any additional hardware or software to make the system effective?
wondered if you or anyone else uses the iPad with Navionics with confidence?

we do.

Do you know how frequently the iPad processes the gps information?

Not sure what you are asking but it is real time. If you want to test it, use your iPad maps and drive down the freeway and you can see yourself move. Keep in mind you must have a cellular iPad to have off true GPS.

Is there any additional hardware or software to make the system effective?

Well, you will need the maps.

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Old 10-10-2015, 03:09 PM   #20
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Great answers

Quote:
Originally Posted by Donsan View Post
wondered if you or anyone else uses the iPad with Navionics with confidence?

we do.

Do you know how frequently the iPad processes the gps information?

Not sure what you are asking but it is real time. If you want to test it, use your iPad maps and drive down the freeway and you can see yourself move. Keep in mind you must have a cellular iPad to have off true GPS.

Is there any additional hardware or software to make the system effective?

Well, you will need the maps.

Great answers !
I have 2 chart plotters aboard - 1 in main salon, 1 on flying bridge upper helm -, I mostly use navionics for iPad, what is good and handy.
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