In our life often there is a situation when it is necessary to reach quickly from one place in another. But thus often it appears that the shortest way on which it is possible to reach without annoying traffic jams, you also do not know! Or other situation in which, likely, there was each of us: it seems, also we know where and how to go, but here definitely we do not know where we are! What to do? In such situations the device called the GPS navigator will come to the rescue (further simply "navigator").
What is GPS? GPS, Global Positioning System – that is Global System of Positioning is the American analog of our GLONASS, i.e. was initially planned as system for definition of exact location of object in the military purposes (Navstar, 1978). This system consists of several tens artificial satellites of Earth covering with the signals practically all surface of the planet, and unlimited number of GPS receivers. The idea is rather simple (at the level of school geometry): each satellite covers the site of the planet, the GPS receiver accepts a signal at least from three of them and on the basis of temporary delays of passing of a signal from the satellite to the receiver determines own coordinates. Existence of the special program of transformation of geographical coordinates in the receiver gives the chance to the user to look at the location on a district map. Accuracy of definition of location is defined by this program – i.e. how precisely it will transfer geographical coordinates to the site plan put in her memory. The first GPS navigators showed only geographical coordinates, now they are combined with site plan.
Personally it was necessary for the author of the article GPS only because he should drive much the car, and the hero town of Moscow he knows, to put it mildly, not very well. And the accuracy of determination of location on a PDA left much to be desired, especially as the screen at a PDA communicator rather small. Besides it is more convenient to use the specialized GPS navigator – and the route will prompt, and will show where to turn, and the location will define. Besides many navigators are able to remember routes that relieves of need anew to lay them.
Choice of the GPS navigator
GPS devices usually divide into such categories:
- the compact. It the devices close on a format to a PDA are also intended for mobile use, that is, you can transfer them. For example, among Garmin navigators to rank all line of eTrex as this category;
- the wearable. In comparison with the first have a little big sizes, thus the display diagonal is also more. Besides such navigators have possibility of work with the portable antenna. Bright representatives of this category iFinder from Lowrance;
- the stationary. Most often such navigators are used in the car. For them rather big display is characteristic (from 3,5 to 7 inches). Besides, the majority of them also work with the portable antenna. They usually accommodate on the car dashboard. Such devices often work with the portable antenna and they with the big screen. As an example it is possible to look at Garmin GPS navigators the Nuvi series;
- professional (kartplotter). These devices suit those who is going to equip with the navigation system of court, planes, etc. more. Choice very big. It is INTERPHASE, Magellan, Garmin and a great number of others.
Someone can notice that on GPS PDA already is. Also will be right – the GPS module is, but at them a lot of things depend on the GPS program. Free programs define location crookedly and slantwise.
For Muscovites: one such free program showed that I am about the Tretyakov gallery while I was on the Red Square at Spasskaya Tower. Yes, the distance rather small but to get confused in the center of the built-up city – will be enough. Generally, understand what the program had a fate …
I apologize, distracted from the main subject. Defined location well that a PDA it is more or less acceptable, it is necessary to pay for the program of work with GPS so many that it is simpler to add slightly – and to buy the navigator from the good producer with good support of the product. Especially as support is, as a rule, free, or costs cheaper than support of the program – and quality is better.
And what else there are GPS? You already got acquainted with two types is and navigators. But still there are separate GPS modules which do not have the screen, but having sockets, radio channels (Bluetooth, Wi-Fi) by means of which they can be connected to the laptop or the desktop personal computer. Or besides PDA. The essential lack of such modules – should be put on a personal computer/laptop/PDA ON for work with them and to adjust it.
At a choice of the GPS navigator it is necessary to define at first how you will use it: always to carry with itself like the mobile phone or it will move in the car (the plane, the bus, the tram …, etc.). Why it is important? Because convenience of use of the navigator in many respects depends on the size of its screen. The screen is more – the simpler to work with it.
In too time, the navigator with the big screen can be a little inconvenient at continuous carrying in a pocket. And it will be inconvenient in width and in height, on thickness navigators with the small screen generally same, as well as with the big.
Also it is necessary to think, the device will be subject to extreme loadings: to blows, falling, various overloads, height differences (for example, at occupations by hand gliding or parachute jumps) – in this case it is necessary to get the device with the strong case. So-called "special" navigators are issued – they are in the shock-resistant water-proof case, and it is necessary to try very much to put it out of commission. If you use the GPS navigator in the car, special fastening is necessary.
And if are going to go to voyage – then it is already necessary to choose not the navigator, but the navigation system. Also it will be better to entrust it to experts.
There is one more moment in a choice of the GPS navigator. So-called time of "cold", "warm" and "hot" start. We will not go deep into technical questions of this parameter. It is important to know, from the moment of inclusion to possibility of work with the GPS navigator has to pass certain time. "Cold" start happens if the navigator was in the switched-off state long enough and thus you far left from a point in which last time used the device. This start borrows most of all time, as a rule of 45 seconds and more. On "warm" (if the navigator was not used more than 6 hours) and "hot" (less than 6 hours) start will leave no more than 15 seconds.
Many models of GPS navigators existing for today are capable not only to specify the direction of the movement to in advance set point, but to lay a route (or as it is accepted to speak – a track), and also to remember it in case of need. It is very convenient when on the same way it is necessary to pass quite often. On average GPS navigators are capable to store 10-15 routes that is quite enough for the majority, but in some models it is possible to meet possibility of storage in memory up to 50 routes.
Has to be not less essential criterion of a choice also quantity of traveling points (POI) in a route. Let's explain that this such. The traveling point is no other than point coordinates on the district. Coordinates can be entered manually (if you have such data), many carry out input of coordinates in the semi-automatic mode (being in this place, fixes coordinates of this point in the GPS navigator). Coordinates of the places interesting you for installation in quality of traveling points can also be looked and downloaded on the Internet. Traveling points can be united in a route subsequently, and the more it is allowed to include such points in a track, the more long there can be your route.
The Track-Back function allows to come back along the made route, having changed the direction the movement in a track to the opposite.
InfoAdvisor.net already said that some models of GPS navigators are capable to lay a route automatically. The good thing, especially for motorists if there is a good card and regularly updated database on city traffic jams – at you is chance to pass without traffic jams. But keep in mind – legislatively in Russia function of a detour of traffic jams is at the moment not allowed.
Memory, district maps
Decide on the area of your movements! After all cards take a place in memory of the device! If you regularly make flights, say, from Moscow to the Crimea, you will need the device with bigger memory, than, say, for the person to whom the navigator is necessary only for Moscow and Moscow area. Naturally, the device with large volume of memory will be more expensive.
At the same time, if GPS is only necessary to you in order that gathering mushrooms, to leave again to that point where you came into the wood – that for this purpose models and without memory will be suitable for district maps.
If are fond of fishing and the navigator is necessary only to come back to the gulf, but not in next where there is a station of a rybnadzor – that besides will be suitable you the device without memory for cards, but moisture-proof. Also turn in this case – some models happen to the sonic depth finder, perhaps, it is useful to you.
It is possible to tell surely that many aim to get about the GPS navigator with opportunity visually to observe the location and to trace a route of the movement therefore not to do without district maps. And, therefore, for their storage is required. It is natural to have as much as possible built-in memory better: cards from the built-in memory also podgruzhatsya quicker, and energy for work with internal memory is spent less. But nevertheless the slot for memory cards superfluous will not be, here it is only important to learn, what maximum volume of memory cards is supported.
In certain cases, in particular, for those who travels much, restriction by number of the installed cards can become a stumbling block at a choice. This parameter seldom when is specified, but InfoAdvisor.net once again will repeat – the criterion has only private character, hardly each of users of GPS navigators needs to have on the device at the same time more than 225 cards.
Usually navigators work at two or four AA batteries. Such option is convenient for compact and wearable GPS navigators is provides some independence of power supplies, after all in case of need it is always possible to take with itself spare batteries. In some models also Li-Ion batteries meet, in that case you have to be sure that will be able always to recharge it.
InfoAdvisor.net pays attention that in marching conditions not less important will be not only type of power supplies, but also operating time from one charge. For example, GPSMAP 60C (2 AAA batteries) according to demands of the producer is capable to work till 30 o'clock. Though completely you should not rely completely on this indicator, nevertheless in the real mode of use this GPS navigator is capable to give out about 20-25 hours of effective work on the mountain. It is quite good indicator, considering that analogs provide smaller operating time for 2-5 hours.
Automobile (stationary) GPS navigators are, as a rule, equipped with Li-Ion accumulators which support operation of the device within 5 hours (it is an average value for such models). Though, in view of that the most part of time the navigator can be connected to the automobile lighter, such criterion as operating time is leveled. For this reason some models intended for the car are made without power supplies at all. If one may say so, at such approach it is given another to parameters more important in this situation. For example, Pocket Navigator PN 7000 Exclusive has no own power supply, but thus possesses rather big with the 7-inch display with comfortable for such diagonal with a resolution of 800х480.
Price categories of devices
As a rule, the high price, more precisely GPS navigators determine by that your location and the more than all frills. But it must be kept in mind that the price also depends on type of the case of the device and on its estimated scope. "Special" navigators are often much dearer "civil" at the same (or having slightly less) options. If you need the specialized navigator, it should be taken in specialized shop, but not at electronic fairs.
Let's consider the main price categories. Hereinafter InfoAdvisor.net will mean GPS navigators from the proved producers: Garmin, Lowrance, Hollux, Pioneer, Mitac, Magellan.To $150.
GPS modules. It simply receivers of signals from the satellite, are capable to work only together with a PDA, the personal computer or the laptop. Without pair device it simply a piece of iron and plastic. Besides at them often is absent own ON with cards (or it low-quality) and it is necessary to be ruined on purchase of the special program + license renewal on it. Connect to the pair device usually on radio channels (to Bluetooth, WIFI) or by means of USB. Some call such devices "nedopriborami" or "pseudo-navigators".$150-250.
The most unpretentious navigators, differ from each other generally in design of the case and the sizes. Technical parameters and functional "frills" are similar. Will suit those who loves easy devices to whom it is not necessary anything superfluous or simply to fans of miniaturization – in this price category many tiny devices. Many navigators from this category are not afraid of water, and GARMIN GPS 72 cannot be drowned – floats on a surface. Besides it has a big screen (and the corresponding sizes). Standard complete set of devices the usually poor.$250-300.
"Transitional class". As a rule, simply more "tasty" modification of navigators of the previous price category, with sharpening under any special functions. It is an ideal choice for people who precisely know that want: you can buy the model which is ideally suited personally for you, having all necessary functions and anything superfluous for moderate money. Selection of devices with the external antenna is possible.$300-540.
The most widespread category. There is a wide choice of devices, all devices for this money have already memory for loading of local cards and the general (basic) world map. If the navigator is intended for use in the concrete country – for example, in Russia, often there already there is a local map of regions of the country. And you can always download cards for the region. Wide choice of additional functions. One of bright representatives of this category – the Legend navigator from Garmin. Navigators in this category usually possess the best receivers in comparison with cheaper navigators. Are ideally suited for most of users.$540 and more.
The highest price category for "civil" navigators. Include everything that is possible also all frills. Here the specialized equipment for work in superextreme conditions is not taken into consideration.
Keep in mind that price classification is relative, it serves only as a reference point. Upon purchase of the navigator are not lazy to do several some shopping, sometimes happens that the dispersion of the prices is considerable at different sellers.
At a choice of the navigator it is necessary to find out, whether the producer carries out lifelong free support of the device and if is not present – that how much is support and for what term. Why it is necessary? Let's reject aside that the navigator as almost any modern device, consists of two parts – hardware and program as programs from time to time are buggy – all know. An essence in other. As it was already mentioned above on InfoAdvisor.net, the GPS receiver determines only geographical coordinates which then are imposed subsequently on a district map. And the card has unpleasant property to change. Therefore they periodically should be updated. And, of course, it is better to do it free of charge especially as many producers put the programs for work with the GPS receiver.
In the market now there are Russian navigators, they can work both with GPS, and with GLONASS. Unfortunately, import navigators are focused only on GPS.
Use of the GPS system – free. Any monthly fees for it it is not raised. At most, for what you can periodically pay is for license renewal on use ON. And this issue is resolved not with the seller, and with the producer given ON. All officially delivered devices are localized.
And at a choice trust your personal feelings! The GPS navigator – the device which has to be the most comfortable for the owner. Of course, the person gets used to everything. But there are cases when it is very important that the device was with the owner "whole". Therefore if this model something is not pleasant to you – be not too lazy, look still: the choice of devices is huge, for certain will find model which to you completely will come to liking.
Successful to you purchases and uses of the navigator!