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Globalsat BT-338 review
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lbendlin
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 27, 2005 3:46 am    Post subject: Globalsat BT-338 review Reply with quote

Globalsat BT338 receiver with SiRFstarIII chipset

We have already announced this new chipset a while back, and now we start seeing the first devices that are actually using that chipset. www.BuyGPSNow.com were so kind to provide us with a review copy of the Globalsat BT338 receiver that uses the SiRFstar III chipset..

Read the review here.
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SimonCatlin
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 28, 2005 6:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You could have knocked me down with the Holy Hand Granade....

How do I collect my prize?.. Just got back from Las Vegas, which is a pity as I could have used it there! Time to ditch the Pretec CF GPS.

Please let me know how you would also like the review submitted etc.

Thanks
Simon.... (in shock)
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Privateer
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Joined: 30/12/2002 17:36:20
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 29, 2005 11:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Congratulations Simon! Thumbs Up

The BT338 looks a nice companion to an iPAQ hx4700. I hope that it serves you well. Looking forward to the review too! ;)

Regards,
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SimonCatlin
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 29, 2005 12:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Been re-reading the review (and drooling 8O )...

Do we know what comes out of the box? There is no mention of the type of chargers etc you get. It is discussed that some cables may already be usable, but not what you get out of the box. Also what software comes with it (might be regional)?
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lbendlin
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 29, 2005 3:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Let's keep the suspense up a bit, shall we?

The box contains the receiver, a mains power adapter with connectors for Europe, Aerica, and the UK, a cigarette lighter adapter with Y-connector (so you can connect your iPAQ too) and a CD . But that only contains the manuals. No extra software is provided, and none is needed anyhow. You can do all the settings with SiRFdemo.
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SimonCatlin
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 29, 2005 3:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Lutz, Thanks for that.

Just read (all) 22 pages of the GPS Passion site on the BT-338. Seems they, the maufacturer, is listening to the customer as well... They have even delayed delivery to fix problems found by the external testers, which is a unique in this world of customers performing beta testing (ask any microshaft customer). Only complaint from that board and people actually using the unit, seems to be the auto-power off, which GlobalSat will look at for a solution to be user customizeable, but not until Q3 or Q4 this year.

Thanks again for the quick response.
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lbendlin
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 29, 2005 9:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Without wanting to pre-empt your review I think the auto-power off is actually a nifty feature. OK, it's no good for hiking, but then the BT-338 doesn't have a datalogger either, so that's no biggie.
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SimonCatlin
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 29, 2005 10:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

lbendlin wrote:
Without wanting to pre-empt your review I think the auto-power off is actually a nifty feature. OK, it's no good for hiking, but then the BT-338 doesn't have a datalogger either, so that's no biggie.


Review can only occur once I receive the little beauty....

I actually prefer the idea of auto shut off, but lets not pre-empt my own thoughts. It'll be my first BT GPS, so I am looking forward to testing with TTN3, Mapopolis and possibly some other items such as the new GPS multi threading software.
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jayd
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Joined: Mar 26, 2005
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 05, 2005 6:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well I received mine today and I can honestly say im very impressed, the pictures in the review do not do the device justice. It's tiny, but very sturdy. I'm using this with Tomtom mobile and I get a fix and a 4 bar signal on Tomtom in the middle of my room with the GPS on my desk, nowhere near a window. My other device which is a 16 channel BT- 77 required me to place it near the window to get a fix and maybe 1 or 2 bars of signal strength. The first fix took me maybe 30 secs. But even after switching off the device for over an hour, the next time I switched it on it aquired a fix from the middle of my room in less than 5 secs, I couldn't believe it! Maybe I'm just a total noob as I've only been interested in GPS for a couple of weeks but this device has really impressed me and im glad I purchased one. I have another one for sale if anyone is interested just check my post in the for sale forum if you want one of these immediatly. Link to post
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MikeB
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 07, 2005 12:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

lbendlin wrote:
... a cigarette lighter adapter with Y-connector (so you can connect your iPAQ too) ...

When I read that I went back to my box (sent direct from Globalsat) and found just a standard Ciggy Lighter. Sad I was hoping I might have got one of the Y jobbies.
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jayd
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 07, 2005 6:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

MikeB wrote:
lbendlin wrote:
... a cigarette lighter adapter with Y-connector (so you can connect your iPAQ too) ...

When I read that I went back to my box (sent direct from Globalsat) and found just a standard Ciggy Lighter. Sad I was hoping I might have got one of the Y jobbies.


Mine neither, but at least it containd a nifty little leather pouch for the receiver. :D
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robbiex
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 09, 2005 3:38 pm    Post subject: Globalsat BT-338 Reply with quote

Superb review of an absolutely fantastic GPS receiver. The difference in sensitivity compared with previous GPS receivers is most impressive.
Minor suggestions for improvement are:
1. Easier to use, but still secure battary compartment door.
2. At least splash proof waterproofing although this could probably be achieved by putting the unit in a plastic baggy when necessary.
3. Detachable magnetic mount. The unit has two rubberized stips, but these don't really prevent sliding on a dashboard.
4. User upgradeable software.
5. User settable auto off and movement options. It is especially important to be able to disable auto off when the unit is continuously connected to a DC source. Auto off presently engages if the unit is DC connected, but not Bluetooth active for more than 10 minutes.
6. A printed instruction book.
7. WAAS capability.
8. The charge light should not just go out if the unit is connected to a DC supply. There should be an indication of connected to DC, but not charging due to fully charged condition.
9. Availablity of a separate model that has serial connectivity.
10. Data logging option.

Unlike the Earthmate, the Bluetooth implementation on the BT-338 seems to be pretty stable, but Bluetooth generally is still a pretty shaky and unreliable technology. We just did our third upgrade of Toshiba's SD card Bluetooth hardware and software (Bluetooth SD Card3, specification v1.2). Version 1 card was unusable. Version 2 is erratic, but passable. Version 3 seems to be a step backward from Version 2.
Test setup is Toshiba e800 PDA, Windows Mobile 2003 SE OS, Toshiba SD Card3 BT. Mapopolis and Teletype GPS software work fine. GPSTools and GPSDash do not receive GPS data with this hardware/software combination.
Robbie
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SimonCatlin
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 12, 2005 3:42 pm    Post subject: My Won one (if you follow me) Reply with quote

Well,

I've received mine last Thursday. (Thank you Lutz and BuyGPSNow.com) Charged it up and tested it.

Here are my thoughts
WOW!

I'll write a review properly and objectively once I have had it for a month or so, but lets say..

Thursday - In Car
Friday - in Plane and Car in Foreign country
Saturday in Car (foreign)
Sunday in Car and Plane (foreign)
Monday at home Sad
Tuesday in Car.

For the sake of legal argument I am hypothesisiing here, that if your were to ignore the warning about electrical appliances at take off, it maybe capable of tracking (using TomTom GPS) at speeds at over 200 mph.

It sits in my armrest in the car at tracks 8 sats. It starts quicker than any other GPS I have ever seen for lock on (less military - but we won't go there).

It's leather pouch is really annoying as the hole is cut incorrectly, so I inserted the GPS the other way around, which does then grant access to the power "hole" and the power button.

In addition I receive a ciggie lights, Y Cable, UK, US and Aussie Adapters to go with the Continental charger, along with the CD ROM, which is almost usless.

My major problem is TomTom bluetooth stack. I have re-isntalled TT GPS 2.06 and nope, no joy. I have tried using the GPS Gate, but the OCX is different from the one I use forTrafcam, so that is a no as well. So I need to get that fixed before I can really throw it through it's paces. But gut feel. It's dynamite![/u][/b]
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lbendlin
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 12, 2005 4:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'd recommed a complete re-install of TomTom - make sure you completely remove all old GPS drivers, and then install only TTN3.07T and TTGPS 3.07 (you may have to remove it once again) or TTGPS 2.06
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SimonCatlin
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 12, 2005 8:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Lutz, Without sounding smug, I did that about 2 hours ago and Hey Presto.... (3.07T with 3.07 GPS). This is recommended only for those who have a hx4700, as like most I upgraded from 3.03.

GPS Gate now controls ALL my connections via one virtual port....
I have running Mapopolis, TomTom, PocketGPSce, Trafacm (via TomTom), GPS Dash and GPSinfo all at one. Its a nightmare to switch between them, and in realistic terms it is impossible while driving.

Need to test them all looking at the port directly to see if TomTom will allow access, but that's for another free couple of hours....
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