Mittwoch, 25. Juni 2014

FIND IT!!! - Loc8tor vs Marco Polo - Tracking Device Review

After my "Auronzo Debacle" (where I totally lost my biggest and most expensive Quad (Black Snapper) of course I did some research which tracking solution could prevent total losses in the future.
Friends of mine use GPS Trackers where you have to install a prepaid cellphone SIM Card and in case of a crash you SMS your GPS tracker and he sends his coordinates back. This sounds really well thought out BUT: if you fly in areas where you have no cellphone coverage - you won't hear from your device!

So a tracking device based on wireless signals is better. Here I found two promising devices:
Marco Polo Pet Tracker    and      Loc8tor

Marco Polo:
+ 2 miles range! (in my tests easily 840m)
+ RC stripped down versions of tags relativly small and lightweight (12 or 24gr)
+ rechargeable batteries (1 month standby in larger tag!)
- bigger (both tag and handheld device)
- a bit more expensive (around 200$)

+ cheap (100$)
+ easy to use
+ small tags (5gr, 1,5cm)
+ small handheld
+/- tags "always on"   (waste energy, 2-5month livetime, but can't forget to turn on)
- batteries not chargeable (buy replacements and set a reminder!)
- range (157m max distance)

So it's hard to tell you which device is better. If you really do a lot longrange the Marco Polo will be better - because in case of a crash you will have to search a larger area. Loc8tor would be lost here if you have no downlink video and can´t estimate the crash location.
Loc8tor on the other hand is optimal let's say for the mini quads in the park. Even crashing a mini in higher grass can mean really long searches! - Loc8tor pays off here quick.

I keep both and will also use both and we'll see which one is better (altough I hope I would never activly have to use them - just as an insurance).

Important Update in Marco Polo:
You have to hold the locating device "like a can of water" (so that the LCD screen is facing the sky). This way the antennas have optimal reception and you get a solid pointer.
Also my tests here with the % value weren't conclusive. Up on the hill I had clear LOS, down on the half distance I was near to the ground, a tree blocked LOS so the value was the same altough the distance was much shorter...


Clemens Pelz hat gesagt…

Thank you for this detailed review. I enjoyed reading and watching it :)



JammerX19 hat gesagt…

Excellent review. I think the Loc8tor is in my future.

Menzinsky hat gesagt…

Thank you,Mario!
If I hadn't been a subscriber to your youtube channel I wouldn't have bought the Loc8tor and then I wouldn't have found my miniquad in a big field of barley! Because of you, today didn't turn out to be a nightmare!
Thank you!
Have a couple of cold ones on me..!
Björn Menzinsky