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Old 11-28-2016, 08:49 PM
DouglasVB DouglasVB is offline
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Default DeLorme discount for anyone interested

As some of you know, I've been running a DeLorme InReach satellite communications device for the last several months. It's been extremely useful in several situations. I have not had to use the emergency functionality on it yet but I have made extensive use of the two-way text messaging functions and the tracking function.

I have a discount code for anyone interested in getting one of these devices. Let me know if you're interested and I'll email you the code. It gets you $50 off the device and a $50 airtime credit. I also will get a $50 credit if someone uses the code.

Since I got mine, my parents have also purchased one. It's easy enough for them to use. It gives me peace of mind to know that they can get help when they're out in the desert. It gives my parents and 's parents peace of mind being able to see where we are when we're out 4x4ing, too.
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Old 11-29-2016, 09:22 AM
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AxleIke AxleIke is offline
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Is it a GPS receiver as well? By that I mean can you connect it to a laptop/tablet etc (adapters needed I'm sure) and have gps on said device to use with DeLorme products (mapping etc...)
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Old 11-29-2016, 09:28 AM
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DaveInDenver DaveInDenver is online now
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InReach is a GPS receiver but not necessarily one you can use in place of a standard GPS puck or handheld. Delorme has an app you can run on a phone or tablet for it, Earthmate, that I think uses the device as a GPS source. I don't know if that will do what you're after.

I use a SPOT because I didn't see that the InReach could really replace an actual GPS device (I have a Garmin GPSMAP handheld) for tracks and routes laid over a map that you load.

The two-way messaging of the InReach was interesting but ultimately I couldn't justify the higher upfront cost and service plan price to get the feature I wanted, which was passive tracking and basic status & SOS.

Cost aside, the InReach has some features that I preferred over the SPOT - true global coverage, less critical orientation and significantly higher power transmitter. OTOH I really did not like that it has a built-in battery that is not removable. It's also quite a bit larger.
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Old 11-29-2016, 09:42 AM
collk22 collk22 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AxleIke View Post
Is it a GPS receiver as well? By that I mean can you connect it to a laptop/tablet etc (adapters needed I'm sure) and have gps on said device to use with DeLorme products (mapping etc...)
Yes - I pair my InReach to my Ipad via bluetooth and run MotionX for navigation. Works really well.

Personally, I find the InReach to be lacking as a standalone handheld device though; I'd use the InReach in addition to a handheld, not in place of.
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Old 11-29-2016, 11:18 AM
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PabloCruise PabloCruise is offline
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So this is not an APRS device?
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Old 11-29-2016, 12:10 PM
collk22 collk22 is offline
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Originally Posted by PabloCruise View Post
So this is not an APRS device?
The InReach uses the Iridium satellite network. I'm not familiar with APRS, but my understanding is that it uses ground based radio repeaters..is that right?
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Old 11-29-2016, 12:20 PM
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APRS is amateur packet radio. It can use digital repeaters (usually store-and-forward on 144.390 MHz on VHF) or simplex. Mostly it's used for GPS position reporting but it's more than that, messaging, data, anything that can be done on AX.25. SPOT, InReach, PLBs have nothing to do with APRS, although the concept for the reporting stuff is similar.
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Old 11-29-2016, 04:50 PM
DouglasVB DouglasVB is offline
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To echo what others are saying, I sync the DeLorme with a tablet via BlueTooth and then use the DeLorme Explorer app. You need to download the mapsets you want ahead of time (all free, all DeLorme) for wherever you're going but the maps are very good.

I looked at the SPOT and decided that I didn't like the satellite network they're using and a few other details (way less coverage for areas that I expect to go in the future, harder to get a signal out of a canyon, lots of friends who have SPOT devices and who are deeply unsatisfied due to them breaking, etc.). What sold me on the DeLorme is the full two-way messaging capabilities. When and I are out and about, we can keep our parents informed about what we're doing and they can contact us in an emergency. My mother and grandmother LOVED getting messages from me and my dad this past summer when we were doing our annual backpacking trip in the California Sierras.

As with either the SPOT or the DeLorme, the emergency feature can be a life-saver. I know several people who have been airlifted out of the backcountry in California after having activated their emergency satellite devices. They would have died had it not been for prompt evacuation. One note on the DeLorme: you can send details to the rescue services beyond just "I need help." For instance, if someone is having a heart attack vs if someone has a compound fracture, you can communicate that. Or if you spot a forest fire, you can communicate that. Then the response is appropriate rather than one-size-fits-all.

My main complaint with the DeLorme is that it doesn't have onboard maps. It has the ability to have track files and do navigation that way but I haven't found a way to load on maps like I can on my Garmin GPS. I believe that DeLorme will come out with a new unit next year that combines both. They were recently acquired by Garmin.

For those who have PMed, I will send you the details shortly.
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1986 Toyota 4runner with all of the desirable features - The Albino Rhino
1988 Toyota 4runner DLX - Goldilocks has gone to a new home!
1989 Honda Pacific Coast PC800 with custom fuel injection system - Had my fun, removed the EFI, back to carb until I electrify the bike
2004 Subaru Forester XT with 5MT and WRX suspension
KD7YBQ
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Old 11-29-2016, 11:21 PM
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AxleIke AxleIke is offline
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This sounds promising. I have an old Garmin Oregon. In addition to no longer being able to upload new maps without significant investment, it has been disappointing with regard to tracks. The unit itself will display a different mileage for the trip and the track when they are one and the same (both reset at the beginning of a hike/hunt).

But, having an iPhone and IPad now, I much prefer the screens/maps/etc on those, but they have no GPS when not on cell networks.

Further, the messaging sounds awesome.

So if you don't mind, please send the details my way as well.
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Old 11-29-2016, 11:55 PM
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Realize there is a subscription to use this Isaac. Delorme scales the fee depending on the number of messages you intend to use and the tracking point interval. For a typical volume user you'd probably pick a point interval of about 10 minutes and 40 text messages, which is $35/month if you don't sign up for an annual contract. It's $25/month, actually $300 for the annual contract at this level. Without the subscription the InReach is pretty limited. It's not going to compete with a decent receiver strictly for GPS duties.

http://www.inreachdelorme.com/produc...tion-plans.php

This was another reason I went for SPOT since I didn't feel the two-way messaging was critical and the subscription was lower. About $150 for 10 minute interval tracking and there are no limits on the number of messages you send. It doesn't do the two-way messaging at all. You get 4 canned messages. One is the SOS that activates the call down list and potentially the GEOS SAR. The other ones are configurable. A check-in, custom message, etc.

The network that Douglas mentions is that the InReach uses the Iridium constellation and the SPOT uses the Globalstar (SPOT is actually a product made by Globalstar). The coverage of Iridium is pole-to-pole because they have a higher inclination. But their constellation sits at a lower altitude. Neither is totally better or worse in this respect, InReach has 66 birds while Globalstar has 24 but the passes are longer for Globalstar and you view more satellites at any moment, at least in North America.

But Inmarsat only has 4 satellites and they get true global coverage. But they're in geosync. So the number of birds in the constellation isn't the whole story, it's their orbit, altitude and inclination that determine coverage. Globalstar also does not attempt to cover oceans so the two systems have similar landmass coverages for our purposes here in the Americas. At any moment you'll also have more Globalstar satellites in view than Iridium.

At this point Globalstar is positioned as a higher reliability with no single point failures in the chain. Iridium has been around a long time and they are incredible but until they start getting gen 2 birds up their system has some weaknesses despite the better coverage. If you're sticking to land the two are interchangeable but for ocean-going travel Iridium (Inmarsat, but that would be a regular EPIRB) is the only option. Also at the extreme poles Iridium provides coverage where Globalstar will not be reliable past the 70th parallel.
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Last edited by DaveInDenver; 11-30-2016 at 12:17 AM.
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