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Knight44
3rd December 2005, 08:50 AM
Morning all,

I've finally gotten around to taking a couple of photos of the laptop/GPS I've got in the Prado.

The GPS is a Garmin 76 with an external antenna and the laptop is a NEC T400 tablet with power for this coming via a Targus unit. I chose the tablet primarily because it was on special ($900) at the local Domayne store - it was a display unit they had been trying to sell for months and had progressively marked down from $2500. Couldn't resist it at $900.

The big advantages of the tablet are its compact size and the touch screen - the biggest disadvantage is the lack of an inbuilt CD/DVD drive.

As you can see from the photos, the tablet sits on the central console. A length of wide elastic (looped under the lid of the console) with velcro on the ends holds it in place when it isn't required for actual navigating. It's quick and easy to move to the navigator's lap when required or when going over rough roads. The laptop is on top of a cooling base I bought from **** Smiths and the two are held together by wide elastic bands - one is on the screen in the photo. The GPS is mounted on a RAM mount down low as I don't really need to look at it when travelling. The external antenna is on the vent immediately in front of the windscreen and held in place by two cable ties looped through the vent. The cabling to the tablet runs through a length of split plastic conduit to keep things neat.

I had some problems on our last trip away. If I turned the GPS on before the computer, then the latter would not recognise the GPS for what it was and do a big dummy spit needing rebooting. The Targus power supply was not giving the correct voltage at the tip due to user ignorance but once home I contacted Targus and they supplied the correct tip. The low voltage caused slow battery recharge and also caused a major problem when trying to restart the computer after hibernation if the battery was low - the battery would go flat and there was not enough "oomph" coming from the Targus to kick the computer into action.

Cheers

Richard

UncySpam
4th December 2005, 11:36 AM
very interesting mate! im still tossing up to go the tablet route or not... im still undecided!

arthurking83
4th December 2005, 11:49 AM
.......I had some problems on our last trip away. If I turned the GPS on before the computer, then the latter would not recognise the GPS for what it was and do a big dummy spit needing rebooting....Richard

How is the GPSr connected to the Tablet?
USB or Serial?

I had trouble with my GPSr-PC at some stage too, I think it's sorted.......

Knight44
4th December 2005, 02:30 PM
The GPS is connected to the computer via a USB to serial adapter. I haven't had any problems with this once I learnt to leave the adapter attached to the computer and only remove the GPS (if required). Otherwise, as others have reported, when the adapter is re-connected, the computer assigns it another COM port and Ozi can't find the GPS.

Richard


[How is the GPSr connected to the Tablet?
USB or Serial?

I had trouble with my GPSr-PC at some stage too, I think it's sorted.......]

Knight44
4th December 2005, 02:41 PM
very interesting mate! im still tossing up to go the tablet route or not... im still undecided!

Yeah, it took me a long time too to decide on the tablet rather than a laptop. I liked the smaller size (10 inch screen) and that the keyboard is completely detachable and so it's much more compact overall when being used in the car.

Richard

arthurking83
4th December 2005, 02:59 PM
The GPS is connected to the computer via a USB to serial adapter......

Yeah the same problems as I had!
Although I had the luxury of connecting via Serial!

But I found a tip somewhere on the net, that I assume fixed my problem when using the USB-Serial adapter??

You have to edit boot.ini found in the root folder (C:\ ??) and make the last line look something like this.....


/fastdetect/NoSerialMouse /NoExecute=OptIn

I just added the "NoSerialMouse" option in mine!
(your boot.ini may look different!!)

But as long as you've got it working........maybe better to leave it!
(ps. I can't just leave things ;) )

cheers.

Gwalia
10th April 2007, 11:46 PM
Nice!!! :mighty

Just the one question- suppose heavy breaking or similar, how does the velcro handle holding everything in place?