I have already taken these toys out of the box, in one week we will do a training to see how it works. For now, I have barely seen the videos and some of their attributes.
Predecessors of the Promark 3.
In this same line, there were previously and there are the last:
- The Mobile Mapper Pro, a nice toy that went for US $ 1,500, and that with post-processing achieved submetric precision. It could be a base and also a rover. It is currently discontinued; It was annoying that the card was deconfigured at startup, perhaps due to a virus, perhaps due to an error after the company's employees' strike.
- The Mobile Mapper CX, this is an upgraded version of the Pro, with an antenna it can be used as a geodetic GPS. He had a relative named CE, who ran on Windows CE, and from what I've heard, this CX doesn't have the headaches of that one.
- The Mobile Mapper 6, This is a new line, I have spoken of this on several occasions. More or less is equivalent to Juno Trimble, although it surpasses it in precision. It cannot be a base, only a rover and in real time it is a fucking navigator with accuracies of 3 to 5 meters.
What's new with the PM3
This brings functionality similar to Pro and CX, unlike the 6 that brings the Mobile Mapping, camera, compass and more pickets. For those of us who try the Pro, it is very simple because the way of operating is the same, simplifying many steps in the menu, which added the keyboard and touch screen makes it more productive. Supports RTK reception and stakeout, I'm not sure if it supports other applications, like ArcPad, that the MM6 can do. Of course, the capabilities of the software that you bring (Fast Survey) do not compare with Mobile Mapping, in terms of configuration, display of points and other headaches.
Like the Pro, it can be base or rover, purchased in pairs, and comes in a practical duffel bag. Each one includes an antenna, in real time it obtains submetric precision (what the pro did with post-processing). Leaving one base can give centimeter precisions, also these base data would make the MM6 reach sub-metrics as shown in the exercise previous.
Among the accessories there is an adapter to place it on a tripod, another to support it on a pole and also a strap to fix it on the hand; a tape measure to take the height of the antenna, an adapter for different forms of USB / Serial connectivity. Among other things, a cable for the antenna, various adapters for power, SD card and individual waterproof bag.
The battery is lithium, with many more hours of duration, surpassing the predecessors that used AA; in the purchase of the pair comes a bar that is useful to place them in similar conditions when working in a "stop and go" way. They bring the Mobile Mapper Office post-processing software, version 3.4 that already supports raster data, interaction with Mapinfo data, shp, dxf and csv; also another desktop application known as GNSS solutions, which includes survey planning capabilities. This last application has an extremely practical interface, with drag-and-drop options, reports and isometric display.
One of the best accessories, the DVD with videos in Spanish, by watching it you can save reading a lot and understand how it works in a practical way; although the manual is very useful too. The video is ideal for training, including a section that explains how satellite constellations work and aspects that affect reception. It also includes the topics:
- Presentation of the team
- Initial setup
- Introduction to the operation of GPS
- How to do static lifting
- Lifting "stop and go" and kinematics
- Field survey software
- Using the Mobile Mapper Office and Other Office Software
- Capturing and managing GIS data
In prices, it depends on the local vendor, so I consulted in my environment, the Mobile Mapper Pro walked for US $ 1,500, the MM6 walks in less than 1,200 and Promark3 near the $ 6,000 pair. Not bad if you consider that centimeter precision can be achieved, other brands do not offer equipment like this for this price.
If I had to compare it with another computer, it could be said that it is almost like Trimble GeoXH, Although they are not exactly equivalent.
Let's do a course this weekend with the guys from the total station and some friends interested in learning for free. We are interested in testing some aspects such as:
- Which precisions are under similar conditions with the available equipment in the municipalities: MMPro and MM6, comparing with the RTK of two Promark3.
- What precision can be achieved in real time and how functional it would be to run the Garmin Legend under similar conditions on properties larger than 3 hectares.
- That loss of accuracy is at distances: 100 meters, one, three and 6 kilometers.
At the same time, once and for all we will try some distance meters that in my opinion could replace Suunto compasses if triangulated enough, in urban areas. Based on the tests we will decide how to optimize the effort in the rural survey that will take us from June to September.
We'll see how it goes.