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Garmin 296 USB not supported for navigation?


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torbjar
torbjar
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I'd like to use my Garmin GPSmap 296 with SD. The route export and track log import always work as expected with either Auto or USB as device connectivity.

After buying the navigation upgrade, on GPS navigation options I don't get USB in the list of ports as expected. This is the same for Windows XP and 7.

Indeed, the documentation (GPS Navigation Facilities) only mentions the port and baud parameters, so maybe a USB connection is not an option although this is not mentioned.

So is USB supported for import/export but not for navigation, or is there a step I have missed?
Tim Dawson
Tim Dawson
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It seems you are expecting to be able to use a Garmin 296 as GPS input for SkyDemon navigation. I have never heard of anybody doing this, I do not know why you would expect that sort of connectivity to work. If the 296 can present itself as a standard NMEA GPS receiver for PCs, then its GPS input will come through a standard COM port, but that is not a SkyDemon issue.
torbjar
torbjar
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Thanks for your comments, Tim.

I did some further investigation with my GPSmap 196 with a serial interface and found the following. It's connected via a Prolific USB to serial device.

For Retrieve Log from Connected Device and Send Route to Connected Device it works when the GPS is set up with "Serial Data Format: GARMIN Data Transfer" and "Transfer Mode: Host". This works with the GPS with Simulator mode on or off. I assume this is what the USB connection with the 296 corresponds to.

I set up the GPS with "Serial Data Format: NMEA In/NMEA Out" and "Baud: 4800" (only choice) and selected "Start GPS" in SD. The position is correct and SD shows the same track as the GPS. However, this only works with the GPS Símulator mode off. I get a red cross under ALT on the left, although the GPS reports a 3D Differential status and a 85' altitude. The Briefing / Nearby Air Traffic Services in SD says "This facility cannot be used while your position is not known". This was done at my home (no speed) so maybe something changes in a real (moving) situation. Anyway, this is a nice step forward.

I will pick up my soldering iron and connect the 296 in the same way to see if the results are the same and report my findings.

Lastly, I believe that there may be a SkyDemon issue here. When I go to Setup / Device Connectivity Options the list of ports only shows COM1 to COM12 (and Auto and USB) which is not the complete list of ports on my system (COM3, COM5 and COM8 are not existing according to Device Manager). The list under GPS Navigation Options shows all 18 ports that the Device Manager shows (port numbers are not consecutive). This is on Windows 7. My XP system has only three (COM1-3), so no obvious issue there.
torbjar
torbjar
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With the 296 serially connected and with NMEA In/NMEA Out format, things got better. I now get an altitude and the Nearby ATS briefing works. Maybe the 196 NMEA messages are slighty different than the 296's and from what SD expects.

The 296 gives a different response in Simulator mode. I do get an altitude but no yellow airplane. Similarly to the 196 in simulator mode, the green bar saying "Seeking GPS Satellites 8 found (8 out there)" just stays there.

I learned something during this excercise and maybe someone else too. I'm happy so far!
Edited 3/31/2013 10:15:26 PM by torbjar
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