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Anybody use C-Map Pc Planner software ?


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I've just splashed out a hundred quid on C-Map PC Planner software (to get the USB C-Card reader).

I originally just wanted the ability to get tracks on to my PC from my C-Map chartplotter, and load waypoints and routes onto it from the PC. I wasn't expecting much from the program itself, but I'm most impressed with it for viewing C-Card cartography on a big screen. You can't use it with a GPS in realtime on a notebook (shame :) ), but nonetheless, it's great for exploring the charts at home.

Here's a screenshot of Yarmouth entrance and Scroby Sands, with "perspective view" switched on, which also works on my plotter.

The chart is Roscoff to Withernsea, which covers both sides of the English Channel and up the North Sea to the Humber Estuary.

The inland coverage of the Broads has the accurate outline of the rivers from the Ordnance Survey OL40 Explorer map, but not as much detail of land alongside.

The single (2009) C-Map cartridge was only £50 secondhand via Ebay, so is much cheaper than the Plan Press full of paper charts that it contains.

post-669-136713790298_thumb.jpg

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Not tried the Cmap Planner as I prefer to plot on paper charts and then just transfer way points to the plotter but one thing I would say,

Be very careful with a 2009 chart anywhere around the Thames estuary, there have been so many changes down there that most have issued new charts.

I think you can update your charts with the planner direct from C-Map but don't know how much it is.

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Hi Strowager

Yes, I have the PC planner too. I found it a lot easier to plot my waypoints on the big screen on my PC than scroll around aimlessly on the little chartplotter. I bought a blank C-Map card for transfering routes and waypoints to and from the plotter. Unfortunately I only just used it a couple of times last year, but will aim to do a lot more this year!

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I do use the Navionics PC planner but never tried the C map one, They are great for transferring routes and waypoints. I would be careful about using 2009 charts anywhere let alone Thames estuary until you have compared them to fully updated paper charts and bunged a few waypoints in where the updates have been made. Also be careful using OS datum charts, if you upload to a plotter it will be expecting WGS84 datum and could put you way off.

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What is Burgh Castle Marina doing off the starboard arm of the Outer Harbour?

Not sure what happened there Perry ! I'm still getting to grips with it.

I would be careful about using 2009 charts anywhere let alone Thames estuary until you have compared them to fully updated paper charts and bunged a few waypoints in where the updates have been made. Also be careful using OS datum charts, if you upload to a plotter it will be expecting WGS84 datum and could put you way off.

Well that shows how outdated I am :) I thought 2009 was nice and "new" !

No worries though, I'm not likely to venture "out" any more. I was pleasantly surprised with the level of detail of the Broads. Not up to OS Landranger detail, but useful to keep track of favourite mooring spots and fishing hotspots.

Here's a couple of perspective views upriver, not at full scale either.

post-669-136713790314_thumb.jpg

post-669-136713790333_thumb.jpg

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Here's the same view as Perry's Navionics map, as near as I can judge.

C-Map is vector based, so the same view as the Navionics shows less detail, but then when you zoom in, (to the area I've shown as a dotted line, a lot more detail then comes up.

I've included Perry's Navionics map again as well on this thread for comparison. (I think Navionics is Raster based, so the detail remains the same when zoomed (as far as I know)).

post-669-136713790351_thumb.jpg

post-669-136713790617_thumb.jpg

post-669-136713790635_thumb.jpg

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Also be careful using OS datum charts, if you upload to a plotter it will be expecting WGS84 datum and could put you way off.

All my charts are WGS84 datum but agree that it is something to be very careful of.

Have found a few inshore routes where the C-Map cartography has been different to the Imray charts I use, it has been the plotter that says the route is a no no but I have still aired on the side of caution and redrawn the route to be safe on both.

Does show very well the difference between Vector and Raster charts though but I guess you have to use the two in anger to find out which you prefer.

Burgh Castle has been just off Yarmouth for a few years now according to C-Map.

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Well that shows how outdated I am :) I thought 2009 was nice and "new" !

2009 is not so old for an electronic chart, trouble is that unlike paper charts they are difficult to update yourself so are unlikely to get done and even exchanging like for like on an annual basis is not cheap. I really is time that you could simply have an annual subscription for a CF card or whatever and download to it every month or so with the updated version. Both my plotters have full UK, Ireland and near Continent coverage so keeping on top of them would be a mammoth task so I just do the local stuff, if I could just download updates it would be a real boon.

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Just reading up and it looks like I am totally wrong and you can't upload revisions to the chart just to the PC planner software. Nicely written piece of advertising though, I know I am not the sharpest knife in the draw but there are a lot blunter, if I read it as on line updates were available then how many others have bought the planner for that purpose.

Surely in this day and age it can't be that difficult to update the charts on line for a subscription, suppose they could be worried about piracy but how many people would put their lives in the hands of a car boot chart cartridge?

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The Imray software does provide monthly updates to their IDC charts. The problem is that the software is very clunky to use, and I'm afraid I just couldn't get on with trying to use a laptop as a plotter onboard.

The thing is, if Imray can do it, why can't C-Map et al?

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I also found a shareware program called "sob" (software on board) that can read c-map cartridges via the c-map USB reader in a PC.

Although the registered and pro versions cost a fair bit, my understanding of the freebie version is that it doesn't expire, and that it is only limited in the number of tracks and waypoints it can store. (I think)

http://www.digiboat-int.com/

There was a slight hitch when it wouldn't read the Roscoff cartridge in my new C-map reader, but then looking on their website it shows a patch update to their software to enable it to work with the newest C-Map reader (which I had bought).

The patch is in, and it now reads it fine, as per the attached screenshot of Harwich entrance.

The plus point over the C-Map software is that it's fully operational, and will plot the position and track if the PC has a connected GPS.

Not as convenient and practical on board my small boat as the chartplotter/fishfinder, but maybe useful sometime, and adds to the usefulness of the c-map cartridge reader. :)

post-669-136713790656_thumb.jpg

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