Author Topic: GPS alternative?  (Read 1462 times)

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OfflineBrick

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    GPS alternative?
    « on: 2013-01-08 11:24:00 »
    I've been looking at several options for GPS on my "new" 2011 GT. I've just about written off the Nav IV as the cost here in Australia is out right silly. Feedback on the Zumo 660 would suggest that some iPhone Apps work better for route planning etc.

    Tonight when I walked in the door, I looked at my sons new iPad Mjni and wondered, " would it fit?" I recall reading somewhere recently someone mounting an iPhone into the dash hole. My GT won't be here until the end of the month so I can't try it up for size, but can anyone think why a iPad Mini in a water proof case wouldn't fit? No idea of the size of the opening, but would it integrate with the on board computer? I don't know about overseas, but thus would be a cheaper option in Oz, bar the stuffing about to make it fit.

    OfflineFP-NLD

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      Re: GPS alternative?
      « Reply #1 on: 2013-01-08 19:39:08 »
      The only items that fit the GPS compartment are the BMW Nav IV and the Garmin Zumo660/665. Both are the same, only the Nav IV has BMW own software/firmware. All other items won't fit unless you do a heavy reconstruction of the GPS slot.
      The only item that integrates with the board computer is the Nav IV, because of the special BMW software.
      I have the Zumo660. It fits the slot perfectly, but does not integrate with the board computer whatsoever (even thought the bike recognises that there is a nav present).
      Cbdane has made his own board computer (not a nav) that fits the connector, but he is real wizz (see www.k1600forum.com).
      I switched the BMW mount for the original Garmin mount in order to hard wire it to my Autocom.
      If you are looking for something cheaper then the best way is to take a nav of your choice, mount it to the handlebar on it's own mount and use bluetooth to connect to your helmet.
      Frank (NLD),             BMW K1600 GT Red (2011); top case w/brakelight, comfort package, safety package, F2P, black Wunderlich bars, PDM60, Autocom SPA  |  Other bike: Moto Guzzi V7 850 California (1975)

      OfflineBrick

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        GPS alternative?
        « Reply #2 on: 2013-01-09 01:42:51 »
        I'm guessing you may have missed my point. I never thought installing a Mini iPad would be straight forward. I never expected it to drop into the hole as an exact fit. I'm just wondering if it could be made to fit and if it could, could the interaction via the iPod connection be used to interact with the bike.

        There are various apps that work easier with better functionality than currently bring offered by dedicated GPS units at much cheaper prices. The use of an iPad mini would also allow something that no GPS unit offers, the ability to connect to the net and interact with the internet.

        I have not completely discounted the idea of installing a Nav IV or 660, but is not looking at alternatives because they aren't a straight plug and play a good idea? Your only getting what someone else says you can have. Kind of goes against the whole philosophy of motorcycling in general, we're all searching for freedom after all.

        OfflineFP-NLD

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          Re: GPS alternative?
          « Reply #3 on: 2013-01-09 20:23:21 »
          I'm guessing you may have missed my point. I never thought installing a Mini iPad would be straight forward. I never expected it to drop into the hole as an exact fit. I'm just wondering if it could be made to fit and if it could, could the interaction via the iPod connection be used to interact with the bike.
          Sorry to have missed your point. I guess anything can be made to fit and maybe even integrated with the bike as long as you have the right knowledge, skills, tools, time and money. That's why I included the link to the K1600 forum as an example what Cbdane has done.  To me, and many others, what he has done is incredible, but apparently he has the necessary qualifications.
          I'm not a technician, but I think that for the integration part you would need the source code of the software on the bike and from what I've heard BMW is not the kind of company that's willing to give that away.
          But feel free to try. I'm sure a lot a people will be very interested in your findings. I now I would be. Although I'm not a technician, I am interested in technique, electronics and mechanics.
          Frank (NLD),             BMW K1600 GT Red (2011); top case w/brakelight, comfort package, safety package, F2P, black Wunderlich bars, PDM60, Autocom SPA  |  Other bike: Moto Guzzi V7 850 California (1975)

          OfflineRTman10

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            Re: GPS alternative?
            « Reply #4 on: 2013-01-10 09:19:45 »
            I'm guessing you may have missed my point. I never thought installing a Mini iPad would be straight forward. I never expected it to drop into the hole as an exact fit. I'm just wondering if it could be made to fit and if it could, could the interaction via the iPod connection be used to interact with the bike.

            There are various apps that work easier with better functionality than currently bring offered by dedicated GPS units at much cheaper prices. The use of an iPad mini would also allow something that no GPS unit offers, the ability to connect to the net and interact with the internet.

            I have not completely discounted the idea of installing a Nav IV or 660, but is not looking at alternatives because they aren't a straight plug and play a good idea? Your only getting what someone else says you can have. Kind of goes against the whole philosophy of motorcycling in general, we're all searching for freedom after all.
            [/quote


            Whats worth thinking about is what you loose by not using what the bike is designed to work with.  I know of no other manufacturer who builds a bike that will interacts with a GPS like a 1600.  If your bike has the audio unit you have complete control over the voice prompt volume.  In addition you can change the display, zoom the map or just have voice prompts. When you park up you dont need to remove the unit ever time.  It also keeps the time correct when you change time zones.  All little things but things you are paying for when you buy the bike. Not sure about the loss of being unable to connect to the web while sat on a 160bhp bike though.




             
            « Last Edit: 2013-01-10 12:00:39 by RTman10 »

            Offlinebandersson

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              Re: GPS alternative?
              « Reply #5 on: 2013-01-10 16:43:46 »
              I temporarily mounted a Garmin Nuvi and found almost complete sun washout no matter travel direction or time of day. Purchased a very expensive Garmin BMW Motorrad Navigator IV thinking problem solved... not so. Only resolution is to mount in a deep "tunnel". Goldwing GPS large screen has proven this with excellent screen visibility 95% of time. GTL solution is ride at night or get used to voice nav commands.  BTW the GTL multifunction display panel suffers same sun washout and reflection issues. Be happy ride only at night and both issues resolved.
              BruceA

              OfflineBrick

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                GPS alternative?
                « Reply #6 on: 2013-01-11 01:56:33 »
                It's this kind of feedback that I read here and else where on the net, that suggests bring blinkered to a particular product just because the Mothership says so, is ridiculous. We pay big coin for a brand of motorcycle, and continue to pay big coin for compromised accessories. The Australian made Strike Genius GPS unit locally is 1/4 the cost of the Nav IV has most of the same functions and doesn't wash out in the sun. Sure the Nav IV works from the handlebars, but if you can't see the screen to operate it, what use is the external controls?

                OfflineAndyC

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                  Re: GPS alternative?
                  « Reply #7 on: 2013-01-13 17:28:21 »
                  It's easy to find satnavs at a fraction of the price of the Nav4 but then its easier to find bikes a fraction of the price of the GTL but its not comparing Apples with Apples. I have used a 660 for some years which is also an expensive satnav but it is also a very good piece of kit. I have used mine all over Europe and it has never let me down. When I bought the GTL I was going to use the 660 but then phoned the dealer and asked them to stick a Nav4 on it, mainly to save the effort of moving the 660 between my GS and the GTL. I am not made of money but having ordered a £20,000 bike an extra £600 for the satnav was hardly a major purchase.


                  When comparing the Nav4 and 660 everyone comments on the lack of bar control with the 660. I have never found the bar control useful but there are other differences which are more useful. If you have RDS radio which transmits traffic info the Nav4 picks it up and shows on screen any problems ahead or en route, even if the radio is not being used. The low fuel option on the 660 which enables you to set a range and warn when fuel is low is automatic on the Nav4, i.e. it reads the bike tank so does not need a range setting. One option on the 660 is lost and that is the MP3 player. In practice it is not needed though as using an iPod or memory stick in the bike's socket is a better option anyway. Also the 660s brightness setting is disabled on the Nav 4 with it being set by the bike. This is a mixed blessing though as it is one reason cited by many for the difficulty in seeing the screen.

                  It would, of course, be possible to use other satnavs but other than the Garmin motorbike specific satnavs, Tomtom Rider (been there, hated it) it means using a non-waterproof car type or multi-purpose system like Garmin Montana. Mounting is not a major problem. There are mounts that screw on the hydraulic reservoirs but the best I have found is a RAM ball modification from a British outfit called Telefizer. Lift out the BMW emblem on the bars and there is a screw thread underneath. The Telefizer mount screws into that thread and results in a standard RAM ball that looks like an original part of the bike. It is a very smart solution which I use for an iPhone mount and have also used my Garmin Montana there for extra trip data. If the GTL dashboard position is really a problem the Telefizer mount is a perfect option. Easy to reach, easy to see and does not detract from the bike at all. Of course any solution not using built in mount means finding a power source and, if not using a bike satnav, keeping the weather out.

                  I have used CoPilot on my iPhone, iPad and Galaxy Tab 7 and as far as I am concerned it is a pretty useless gimmick on a bike. Don't get me wrong, the CoPilot software is very good, probably better than Garmin, but there are too many problems with using it on a bike.


                  1) the iPhone screen is too small.
                  2) the touch screens are capacitive so can't be used with bike gloves.
                  3) pop ups on iPhone and iPad obscure screen and can't be dismissed while riding without taking gloves off.
                  4) Not waterproof (I have used Galaxy and iPad in tank bag map pocket. it works, its water resistant but still a poor solution)
                  5) Additional charging problems due to USB charger needed. These things have a battery life measured in minutes on own power.



                  Although I have used iPhone/iPad on my GS a couple of time, for me, the 660/Nav4 is hard to beat. My Nav 4 has been used for a couple of European trips and I initially thought the reflections were a major problem. In practice they have never really bothered me. There are odd times with the sun directly behind when it is hard to see the screen but a slight head move has solved the problem. For anyone who cannot live with the GTL's satnav fitting I think the best solution is a 660 on a Telefizer mount. Not cheap still but why is anyone who has just bought a £20,00 bike looking for cheap.

                  Andy C - GTL & 650GS Past bikes include 1200GSA and 1200GS, VFR, VT500, FJ1200, XT250, Gold Flash, Ariel Arrow.

                  Offlineblokeonthemove

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                    Re: GPS alternative?
                    « Reply #8 on: 2013-02-05 14:25:16 »
                    I have to agree with AndyC, after years of penny pinching with previous bikes and cars, On my old Gold Pan European I went for a cheapo Givi top box rather than buy the overpriced Honda  colour matched item, always regretted it. I decided with the 1600 to have all the bells and whistles. I have been impressed with the RDS traffic alerts on the Nav4, on a snowy day in Switzerland it said the road ahead was impassable, good advice, but not heeded, we made it but only just. I like google navigation but on the bike the simplified mapping graphics of the Garmin conveys the information at a glance. One thing I miss though, on my old TomTom rider when paired with an old Nokia phone, had the ability to display and read text messages. None of the newer stuff seems to do that. The days are getting longer here so the bike will be out more soon.

                    OfflineAndyC

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                      Re: GPS alternative?
                      « Reply #9 on: 2013-02-05 18:30:35 »
                      Quote
                      One thing I miss though, on my old TomTom rider when paired with an old Nokia phone, had the ability to display and read text messages


                      Odd how on some things we go backwards. I could read text on my old Garmin 2720 with whatever phone I had then. Now I have an all signing and dancing iPhone 5 and a Nav4 I can't
                      Andy C - GTL & 650GS Past bikes include 1200GSA and 1200GS, VFR, VT500, FJ1200, XT250, Gold Flash, Ariel Arrow.

                       

                      anything