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Which laptop program can show the location of the Amtrak train I'm riding?
pvcarlson
I travel a lot on Amtrak.
Is there program I can load on my laptop that shows the location of the train I'm riding?

Thanks for info
GoneNomad
Not unless your laptop has a GPS receiver and something close to a line-of-sight 'view' of three GPS satellites.
Ken in Regina
Further to what GoneNomad said, you can buy GPS receivers that will connect via USB or Bluetooth. If you can position the GPS receiver close to the window there's a good chance you'll get a good enough signal for a fairly accurate location. If you decide it's worth doing that, then we can discuss the map program options, including the Maps app that comes free with Windows 10.

...ken...
pvcarlson
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ken in Regina
Further to what GoneNomad said, you can buy GPS receivers that will connect via USB or Bluetooth. If you can position the GPS receiver close to the window there's a good chance you'll get a good enough signal for a fairly accurate location. If you decide it's worth doing that, then we can discuss the map program options, including the Maps app that comes free with Windows 10.

...ken...
Thanks Ken.
What would be a good mapping options? Laptop with Windows 7..and I'll be next to a window. What do you think the better GPS to plug into laptops USB? Sorry for the delay....trip is coming up in March.
Ken in Regina
Quote:
Originally Posted by pvcarlson
Thanks Ken.
What would be a good mapping options? Laptop with Windows 7..and I'll be next to a window. What do you think the better GPS to plug into laptops USB? Sorry for the delay....trip is coming up in March.
The Globalsat BU-353 is pretty much the gold standard for USB GPS receivers. There's a discussion here.

http://www.laptopgpsworld.com/2599-globalsat-bu-353-s4-usb-gps-receiver

I have one and it's my go-to USB receiver. I've had some cheaper ones but have given them away or tossed them. You can usually find a decent deal somewhere.

...ken...
Boyd
If you think you might want to use the receiver with a phone or tablet in the future, you could consider a bluetooth receiver as an alternative. More expensive but more versatile and you won't have any wires to mess around with. it couid just be clipped to your shirt pocket or sleeve and you won't get strange looks from people when you put some suction cup thing with a wire on the train window.

Still happy with my Garmin GLO and I have used it with Windows, Macintosh, Android and iOS devices. http://www.laptopgpsworld.com/4860-garmin-glo-bluetooth-glonass-receiver
pvcarlson
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ken in Regina
The Globalsat BU-353 is pretty much the gold standard for USB GPS receivers. There's a discussion here.

http://www.laptopgpsworld.com/2599-globalsat-bu-353-s4-usb-gps-receiver

I have one and it's my go-to USB receiver. I've had some cheaper ones but have given them away or tossed them. You can usually find a decent deal somewhere.

...ken...
Thank you, I have some surfing to do.
GoneNomad
FYI:
GPS / GLONASS ChipSet Comparison Table
http://www.canadagps.com/KB_04.html

BTW, "Sensitivity Rating (Negative lower is better)" means that the MTK chipset's -165dBm is the best rated sensitivity on that chart, while the ST's sensitivity of -155dBm is the worst.

...
Ken in Regina
Quote:
Originally Posted by GoneNomad
FYI:
GPS / GLONASS ChipSet Comparison Table
http://www.canadagps.com/KB_04.html

BTW, "Sensitivity Rating (Negative lower is better)" means that the MTK chipset's -165dBm is the best rated sensitivity on that chart, while the ST's sensitivity of -155dBm is the worst.

...
For those who aren't sure, the Globalsat BU-353 has the Sirfstar IV chipset which rates second in sensitivity, lowest in power consumption, and otherwise rates well. .

...ken...
GoneNomad
^ ...not only excellent performance, but at a lower price than the others too, which makes it one of the best values (This is the 1Hz version; the BU-353-S4 5hz version is a lot more expensive). Another great value is the Columbus V-800+ which offers 5Hz update rate & a built-in backup battery to reserve system data for rapid satellite acquisition.

Quote:
Originally Posted by pvcarlson
Thank you, I have some surfing to do.
Maybe this will save you some time:

If you're sure you'll always be using the GPS receiver with a Windows tablet/laptop that has a spare full-size USB port available, and don't mind having a wired connection (for aesthetics or practicality), then buy a BU-353-S4 on Amazon or ebay for about $25 or less.

But as Boyd said:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Boyd
If you think you might want to use the receiver with a phone or tablet in the future, you could consider a bluetooth receiver as an alternative. More expensive but more versatile and you won't have any wires to mess around with...
Very true. But USB GPS receivers can be connected to *most* tablets or phones using a USB-to-go adapter. Just won't be able to charge at the same time.

Another option: what may be the only hand-holdable tablet that has a full-size USB-A host port: LG GPad x 8.0 (available in AT&T/TMo LTE version for about $150 or less).


PS: I just noticed that at least one of the receivers listed in bottom section of that chart is a data logger only (Columbus V-990), with no real-time GPS receiver function for vehicle navigation.

...
pvcarlson
Quote:
Originally Posted by GoneNomad
^ ...not only excellent performance, but at a lower price than the others too, which makes it one of the best values (This is the 1Hz version; the BU-353-S4 5hz version is a lot more expensive). Another great value is the Columbus V-800+ which offers 5Hz update rate & a built-in backup battery to reserve system data for rapid satellite acquisition.


Maybe this will save you some time:

If you're sure you'll always be using the GPS receiver with a Windows tablet/laptop that has a spare full-size USB port available, and don't mind having a wired connection (for aesthetics or practicality), then buy a BU-353-S4 on Amazon or ebay for about $25 or less.

But as Boyd said:

Very true. But USB GPS receivers can be connected to *most* tablets or phones using a USB-to-go adapter. Just won't be able to charge at the same time.

Another option: what may be the only hand-holdable tablet that has a full-size USB-A host port: LG GPad x 8.0 (available in AT&T/TMo LTE version for about $150 or less).


PS: I just noticed that at least one of the receivers listed in bottom section of that chart is a data logger only (Columbus V-990), with no real-time GPS receiver function for vehicle navigation.

...
Thank you
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