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Garmin Buys Active Captain

Discussion in 'General Yachting Discussion' started by JWY, May 12, 2017.

  1. JWY

    JWY Senior Member

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    Jeff and Karen Siegel combined their boating experience with their IT skills and filled a void in the marine world. They didn't just create the program, they educated and entertained along the way. Good for them! Hope they buy a bigger boat, but my guess is they are just fine with the refit on the recently purchased one.

    Kudos to the Siegels - job well done!

    Judy
  2. captainwjm

    captainwjm Member

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    Ditto, although this news is easier to take since I have Garmin products. If I had invested in another brand that now accepts AC, I might be a little worried about the future of AC under a for-profit regime.
  3. Pascal

    Pascal Senior Member

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    I agree... been using and contributing since almost day 1... back in 09 I think. Fantastic service and now well integrated with hardware.

    That said, I don't use on Garmin hardwart but only on my iPad and iPhone thru the Garmin blue chart app. I doubt they re going to cut access from other hardware...

    Does it mean that we ll soon be able to use the words active captain here without them being obfuscated? :)
  4. Norseman

    Norseman Senior Member

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    Hate to display my ignorance, but what is active Captain and what does it do.
    (I am Googled out)
  5. JWY

    JWY Senior Member

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    I too have been a "member" from the beginning. It's a boating site where cruisers provide input. From their website: "Marina data, reviews, local knowledge, anchorages, and hazards are being added and updated a thousand times a day."
  6. Norseman

    Norseman Senior Member

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    Cool, thx.
    Heard about it for years but never checked it out.
    My boating is local stuff in Florida and the Bahamas and doing the same stuff over and over again so I know my way around: Sail to the Bahamas, put the anchor down and drink beer, easy:)
  7. JWY

    JWY Senior Member

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    As an fyi, there are posts on local hazards, missing markers, shoaling, and things that might make your routine more puckerable than necessary.
  8. Norseman

    Norseman Senior Member

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    True enough, I will check it out and use it, although I reported missing markers in the past to the folks making the electronic charts. Back then it was Jeppesen I believe. Sailboats are easy, you touch the bottom with the keel and no damage. ( Unless you get stuck overnight and start heeling over when the tide goes down, then the wife gets ticked off to say the least. Been there, done that:))
  9. olderboater

    olderboater Senior Member

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    Active Captain distinguishes itself by the sheer volume of items identified. In cruising many areas, I've found it's shown marinas to be of tremendous value. There is nothing else comparable. It's also linked into many computer and tablet used charting applications. It's not currently included with any actual chartplotter navigation software. This would seem very likely to change.

    Marinas and anchorages are reviewed by members and the information found is often helpful.

    To Pascal. I hope that's the case of being able to use the words. I suspect that sometime in the past, Jeffrey earned the censoring of them.
  10. Norseman

    Norseman Senior Member

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    Nice.
    I will check it out as needed.
    Since I never go to marinas I did not have the need for updated information
    on marinas, anchorages in the Bahamas has been covered well on the Explorer Charts, as well as printed cruising guides. (Garmin are now using the Explorer Charts for their electronic Charts)
    Now that I have a small power boat with limited cabin space, I need to check out marinas with hotel rooms. The boat can take 5-6 people from marina to marina but the guests, as in friends, need a place to sleep. Especially with women onboard, they are not up to sleeping on deck and in the cockpit on roll-out foam "mattresses". Guys don't mind after unlimited rum and cokes however.
    Got my boat for sale, need a bigger boat with more cabins. The Glacier Bay 2770 has been fun and it created some charter income, but I can see a Diesel boat with more bunks and a proper galley in my future.
    Perhaps a Tiara 30 something.
    Or a sailboat, who knows. Any suggestions for a used Bahamas Cruiser, single or twin Diesel. Budget up to $150k cash.
    Or back to the Albin 28TE that Captain J recommended in 2015.
  11. Pascal

    Pascal Senior Member

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    Active captain has basically put traditional cruising guides out of business. It's not just marinas but anchorages, inlets and cuts, shoaling and other dangers like missing markers or sudden obstruction

    What is really nice is that it is now integrated with a number of phone/tablet apps and even chart plotters.

    Like every crowd sourced data you have some static. For instance I am always amazed at how many users seem to be so focus on public bathrooms and showers :) or all the Canadian sailors bitching about paying more than a dime a foot for dockage without free water :)
  12. Norseman

    Norseman Senior Member

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    So you download all the info before departure? Wifi at some anchorage in the Bahamas is spotty to say the least.
    How do you connect to the Chart plotter?
    I got a Garmin 1040 XS and updated it to version 6.60 yesterday using a chip card. Would a subscription to Active Captain have put more info to the update?
  13. Pascal

    Pascal Senior Member

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    I have never used AC on a plotter so can't help you there.

    But using an app or some of the PC nav software like polar Navy, yes. You download the AC data and after that no longer need an internet connection to use it, only to update.

    Forget wifi in the Bahamas, use cellular. Get a BTC sim and a cheap phone and use that as an access point. BTC now has unlimited data ($50 for 30 days). You can pre order a sim from mrsim.com or buy one at a BTC office over there.
  14. olderboater

    olderboater Senior Member

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    Today you cannot yet connect it to any installed chart plotter. Only to computer based charts.

    You can download before starting your trip.
  15. Capt J

    Capt J Senior Member

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    AT+T has a special of $10 per day for unlimited text, phone and internet for most international locations including the bahamas.
  16. Pascal

    Pascal Senior Member

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    Yeah but $10 a day = $300 a month...

    I ve been using the $100 a month ATT passport plan with discounted voice and 800MB for awhile as a back up to BTC. It s fine if you watch your data usage
  17. Norseman

    Norseman Senior Member

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    Last time I used AT+T in the Bahamas it was $2.99 per minute.
    That was Years ago and I almost ended up in the poor-house as wifey had to chat with her mother and her sister every day.
    Installed a cell phone booster and dedicated antenna for the next trip, then bought Bahamain SIM cards on eBay which knocked the price down to $0.55 per minute.
    The cell phone booster doubled the range of our phones from 8NM to 16NM from shore.
    Back in 1999 before we used cell phones in the islands, I had a digital SSB radio (a SEA 235R) and contracted with some radio station in Alabama for phone patches so wife could chat with mother and sister.
    Also expensive...
    Lately, while anchored in the Bahamas we just use SMS roaming on the Batelco network and also tried some local wifi at North Cat connecting to Skype.
    Should try to disconnect completely while over there, but too hooked on the internet to let go:(
  18. Pascal

    Pascal Senior Member

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    $2 a minute is th basic roaming ATT charges without a passport plan. The passport rates are pretty much the same as BTC and this way you only need to carry one phone and people can reach you on your number

    For internet though we use BTC sims in our iPads. I ve just installed a cradlepoint cell modem connected to our main router which works with an ATT sim here and should work with BTC sim over there. Nice unit
  19. Capt J

    Capt J Senior Member

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    Yeah but it's unlimited PHONE, text, and internet for $10 a day. So if you need to use your phone a lot and internet a lot it's worth it. Also if you're only in the bahamas for 5 days......so for some people it works out better.

    I unfortunately have Verizon and only get phone reception in Paradise Island but not Nassau, Harbor Island, and Bimini. (Haven't checked in the Abacos).
  20. Pascal

    Pascal Senior Member

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    Yes, for short trips it's a good deal.

    You should have service with Verizon pretty much everywhere, my GF has Verizon and it works everywhere in the Bahamas but she s had to call Vz before to get it to work there. And sometimes her iPhone acts up and resets.

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