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Old 11-12-2014, 07:57 AM   #21
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Originally Posted by Drake View Post
You should also try Garmin's Blue Chart on your iPad. They have a free version that works fine at a basic level, and a paid version that has lots of info on marinas, anchorages, etc. I think it will interface with ActiveCaptain, but I haven't figured out how to do that yet.
Within the app...

Settings/ActiveCaptain/Log in

You'll need to enter your ActiveCaptain email/password. Then it'll synchronize with the server and have all of ActiveCaptain offline even if there isn't an Internet connection later. That first sync should be over WiFi because it's larger but not ridiculous.

Whenever you then have connectivity, it'll keep the ActiveCaptain data updated so you have the very latest info and comments especially about the 600 hazards currently documented along the ICW's. There are about 50 new hazard comments made every day, and usually more along the Atlantic ICW this time of the year.
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Old 11-12-2014, 09:27 AM   #22
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We used the BlueChart/Active Captain combo on the iPad as a backup to the chart plotter during our run up the ICW. Invaluable!
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Old 11-12-2014, 02:33 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by AussieCraig View Post
Greetings, I have a 49 foot custom trawler and the GPS just died...she also has an older model furuno radar and a separate older sounder. All are installed on the main station in the helm, no separate stations.

I will mainly be in the GOM with trips further afield as my experience and confidence increases. Now to my question - would I be better off with a laptop based nav system with a separate fish finder/depth sounder deal or better off with a dedicated all in one unit ?
The answer to this question is all about what kind of person you are.

Do you want to just install one box, supply it power, and it all works? Then an all-in-one is your best bet.
Do you not mind running different types of cables, interfaces, software upgrades, etc? Then DIY/PC

Or

Do you want to have all the features available after one upgrade? All in one.
Do you want to install in stages. Maybe a GPS chartplotter today... radar next year... fishfinder next season... Then a DIY approach is better. Unless you commit to one manufacturer's family of devices.

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Originally Posted by AussieCraig View Post
Any recommendations regarding brands/models that you have found successful ? Is radar worth the added money until I am heading on longer voyages ?
I have found any cheap, generic laptop to be just fine. I prefer standalone devices, and have fallen in love with the new low-powered single board computers like the Raspberry Pi or CubieTruck (my personal favorite, and recommendation) running OpenCPN.

I love radar, and would not recommend cruising without it. I can't tell you how many times I've seen a small dinghy-sized fishing boat on radar before seeing it visually. I've also spotted porpoises and orca on the radar too.

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Originally Posted by AussieCraig View Post
Lastly, is there any websites, books etc that cover all the basics of nav electronics etc ?
If I may self-promote, and if you are interested in the Raspberry Pi/Cubie truck approach, I have been blogging my project for over a year. This site is an excellent reference too, just browse the archives. And the OpenCPN.org site has a very good users manual to get an idea of what you'd be getting into.
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Old 11-12-2014, 07:00 PM   #24
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Wonderful info and I thankyou all, I will let you know what I decide after it bounces round my brainbox for a while...and I will definitely take a look at the raspberry website too, havent heard of any of that before...
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