XB-8000 new transponder AIS WiFi for mobile devices [Update]

xb-8000Vesper Marine, company established in 2007 in Auckland (New Zealand), specializes in the design of devices for AIS data broadcasting. Their latest product, XB-8000, is a Class B AIS transponder certified NMEA2000® compact, low consumption, responding to the yachting market and small business units. It has essentially been designed with a view to WiFi transmission to navigation applications developed on tablets and smartphones.

[Updated] After the acquisition of Vesper Marine by Garmin, this device is discontinued since February 2023. The brand name is also removed.

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MiniPlex-3 new firmware 3.4.0

The MiniPlex-3 multiplexer has known since November 2021 numerous software improvements and changes withfirmwares (Firmware) versions 3.x.x. The latest version 3.4.0 date of 13 January 2022. These firmwares are closely associated with the MPXConfig3 utility whose latest version 3.5.0 is required to proceed with the latest device update. To date, this utility can only be used with PC/Windows, the macOS version probably not being available until late February. Read more …

Simultaneous Wi-Fi and cellular connection [Update]

In coastal navigation, so often within range of a cellular network, we can download GRIB files, weather maps, or simply communicate with friends. But what if our smartphone or tablet is already connected via Wi-Fi to a multiplexer?, or an NMEA gateway, without cutting the data that feeds our favorite navigation application ?

This is the summer trick…

[Update 25/09/2020] The trick in question depends on the iOS version used. Details in the article.

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Integrate tablets with onboard instruments : Wi-Fi gateways

For several years it is possible to integrate iPads and other mobile devices using Wi-Fi to onboard instruments. This enables navigation applications, not only receive all sensor data : log, anemometer, sounder, AIS, etc,, but also to send their own navigation data to instruments, as, in example, to control an autopilot.

This integration involves devices called “gateways” or “routers” which connect to the networks of the instruments., receive the data circulating through these networks, and transceive in Wi-Fi to tablets and smartphones. Some navigation applications are being developed to process this data and transform mobile devices into real navigation centers. Read more …

Miniplex-3Wi-N2K : Major updates

ShipModul manufacturer comes to provide on its web site two major updates to dowload for its multiplexer Miniplex-3 :

  • Firmware Miniplex-3 V.1.17
  • Firmware Wireless V.1.4

Two update files, featured with a procedure (in English), are packaged in a single folder WiFi V1.4.0.0. Download. The implementation can be done with the configuration utility MPX-Config V.2.1.0 minimum, available in PC and Mac versions. Read more …

The Miniplex-3Wi-N2K finally available

Expected for almost two years, hoped more, we despaired… but here it is in my hands. Alleluia ! Multiplexer Wi-Fi NMEA0183, gateway NMEA2000 and translator SeaTalk1 is available in France (¹).

The same size and as light as his little brother, Miniplex-2Wi (²), its plug terminal is significantly neater : no need for screwdriver, the connectors are equipped with spring clamps. The signage is also much more readable in color, up to 4 lights leds allow a look to check the operation : strings scrolling NMEA2000 and/or NMEA0183, connection to a Wi-Fi device, and overflow if applicable.

But the apparent simplicity is misleading and the thing hides a real potential.

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