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Thread: Garmin 296 or Ipad for GPS

  1. #1

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    Garmin 296 or Ipad for GPS

    Just got back into flying and need to buy a gps. I can get a used 296 on ebay for between $300-450

    Or should I get a Ipad with Foreflight and cool apps. This would cost more but seem like you can do much more with an Ipad, just wondering the reliability of Ipads. Garmins are bullet proof.

    Would be great to here some opinons of the guys using the Ipad for Navagation.

    My flying will be Alaskan remote VFR .

    Thanks,
    Israel

  2. #2

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    I have both in my plane. I use the Ipad to stay current on the charts and supplements and the Garmin 495 to keep me on track. If I could come up with a nice mount for the Ipad I would use it more but it just covers up to much of the panel therefore it stays in the seat back pocket 90% of the time.

  3. #3

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    I have the Garmin 295 and 296. They are simple and easy to interpret. One of my students has the iPad with external GPS, Foreflight, traffic alerting, and probably more. He also has an AV8OR. He has family in Santa Monica, so we get to do some pretty complex navigation. I swear I cannot rapidly interpret the iPad - I have to have the local chart open. The "track" numbr is a teeny wenie black number buried in a meaningless string of numbers. I can never find it. I cannot even find the little black airplane that shows our location without staring at it.

    On the other hand, I programmed the 296 for four numbers on the right side. Track, Distance, Speed, Bearing. The left side has a relatively simple map, and I can see the edges of the class B, as well as the multiple class D. I still need the local chart, since ATC doesn't have a clue about class B floor and will run us to Burbank to avoid stuff we are actually below.

    Just so you know, I am trying to show him that a compass and a watch will do the job, but in complex airspace, it is nice to have a backup that I can interpret.

  4. #4

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    I have a experimental pa-14 and the whole right half of the panel is empty, plenty of room for an Ipad. I know that finding the space for them is hard in most planes.

  5. #5

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    buy the iPad, i have been using it since Jan--i used it for my instrument rating....took it to the brooks range in august--it has worked awesome--it was great for fuel management on the ground for the two planes getting exact distances--coming home the clouds pushed us to the ground near summit--i looked at ipad while flying tree top level and noticed two towers on one side of road--so we flew the other side--ended up having to land at the igloo to wait out wx but I highly doubt I would have unfolded a chart while flying in the wx and maybe those towers would have gotten up and close??.... I only take it in the cub for the longer flights and flights that I'm not as familiar with...the ipad mini might be an option too-maybe just the right size

    But, it might be worth buying a cheaper older model if you don't want to take it every flight..my iPad won't fit on the panel and I don't want to fly with it every time on my knee so having a hard wired GPS makes it nice as I only take the iPad with me on about 5% of my flights....i do find the GPS more useful for viewing/storing waypoints, automatically tracking my flight time (i have an aera GPS-which I really can't stand vs my old 196-but it was a gift so it's in the plane)

    if i had the room i'm not sure I would only opt for the iPad--but i would ensure I had a place and power for it--

  6. #6
    Laz's Avatar
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    Hi Israel
    I had a similar quandary ie: experimental 14, flying in Alaska, iPad or GPS ?

    I went with the iPad, because of the future possibilities. (iPad 2, with internal gps only)

    What I've found:
    it's a little big on a knee pad (the mini might be the cats meow?). I use it with a cheap moving map display app( no subscription cause I'm basically cheap.) I think fore flight would be great and may upgrade in the future. Also free E6B app. Free airport directory.

    I generally use it for:
    What drainage am I in?
    How fast am I moving , actually?
    How far is my next destination?
    Which way?
    How much stuff (and where) can I put it in the airplane, and still control it?

    I usually put it on the seat next to me and refer to it once and awhile.

    I put a glove box in the right inst. panel for maps etc. not wide enough for the iPad (wish I had thought of that!) but the mini would fit. You could put a ram mount there?

    It's hard to see in sunlight ( but usable), although that hasn't been a problem this past year?

    All I all I'm pretty happy with it.

    Laz

  7. #7
    dplunkt's Avatar
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    Buy the ipad mini. I have been using the ipad and I find that it is great with the moving map and other information. It also will continue to be updated and other aps will become available. I pulled an old Lowrance out of my panel, used a ram mount and mounted the ipad. When the mini comes out it will fit perfectly without obstructing my view of the instruments. I think the most important consideration is future capabilities; with available ADS-B, AHRS and weather add ons the ipad can become really useful.
    Click image for larger version. 

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  8. #8
    cubdriver2's Avatar
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    If your in the boonies most of the time something you can stick AA batteries into might be handy.

    Glenn

  9. #9
    akpj's Avatar
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    Laz what moving map program are you using?

  10. #10
    cubdriver2's Avatar
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  11. #11

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    iPad, love it. My expensive 296 won't turn on anymore after the Garmin help desk had finished "helping" me fix it. My 296 would re start every hour or so even after all the up dates, also the maps are factory set to be wrong, they often show that you are flying out to sea when you are following the beach. Yes you can fix this if you spend more money and purchase the extra maps.
    ipad works great, and iPad mini I hope will be the answer to the size issue. But even so the size is ok to use in my cub, I can reach it when it's in the back or get my passenger to hold it and help navigate.
    Garmin bullet proof? Yeah right. Go the iPad.

  12. #12

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    I bought the Garminn Aera 500 last year. Wasn't sure about the touch screen but I really like it. I do like it better than the 296-496. Terrain seems to be dead on. Easy to use. Does have automotive mode but I have tried it on a couple of road trips and don't really like it. Aircraft mode is great though. Every once in a while I do wish I had approach plates and airport diagrams though.

  13. #13
    Laz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by akpj View Post
    Laz what moving map program are you using?
    I'm using zephyr charts.
    It has a few little issues , such as not being able to zoom down to a fine resolution, and having to zoom back out to scroll the map, but so far it does what I need. You can try it in a free version,and I think it was only a few bucks for the full version.
    It works without having the iPad "tethered" to anything while flying.

    Most of the other apps don't include Alaska. There may be something better out there, but I mostly enjoy looking out the window and following the landforms.
    It can help when I get a little "confused" though!

  14. #14

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    This iPad Mini looks like just the ticket for the cockpit of a -12 or -18, but I must admit that I'm not savy enough to know which model to buy. Questions:

    1) Is a GPS receiver standard in the mini? External antenna or built-in?
    2) There's quite a difference in price depending on the amount of memory. Is the extra memory worth the bucks if the Mini was only used for navigation?
    3) How much does a good moving-map program cost? Can you advise some options in that regard?
    4) I presume that RAM mounts are/will be available for the mini (?).
    5) Is there any way to run the Mini from on-board 12-volts?

    I'm obviously "challenged" in this department!

  15. #15
    WanaBNACub's Avatar
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    My Mini should be arriving today and I will be able to better tell you how much memory all my flight apps use. I went for the 32gb in my case though because I will be using it for a few other things besides just flying. I went for the wifi model with no gps and will be using an external gps. That is generally recommended by all the pilots I have talked to. The moving map programs I have looked into are the Garmin Pilot and ForeFlight. Garmin is $49 a year subscription and ForeFlight is $79 a year currently. As for the ram mounts, there are some out right now that were designed for other 7" tablets that will work with Ipad Mini. And finally they make lots of 12v charging cords so there should be a way to hard wire a usb port in or at the worse case wire in an accessory cig lighter type plug. Hope that helps!

  16. #16

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    Thanks. That's exactly the info I needed.

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