prism

jackolantern

Super Anarchist
1,631
466
So it's basically on price parity with a Micro and blows them out of the water in terms of visibility? Can't tell you how often I need to lean in to wipe spray off that tiny freaking screen just to see it or brush an errant leech cord out of the way because it's enough to block a whole digit.

Seems like a slick solution to a problem I thought I was just stuck with. 

 

left hook

Super Anarchist
7,473
5
You can get the nautilytics one for $335....  That's the direction i'm steering right now.

http://www.apsltd.com/nautalytics-alloy-digital-compass.html
You totally could, but I'm not sure if I'd feel overcharged or just sore from craning to see it while out hiking. On a per-screen basis the Prisim seems to be a bargain! 

03_600x600.jpg


nautalytics+alloy+compass


 
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F18 Sailor

Super Anarchist
2,675
254
Annapolis, MD
As I get back into the Laser, I've had several thoughts as I have a looot of gear from my campaign. I still have tons of good old spec sails including practice.  But $400 for a digital compass? That doesn't show shifts? I think I'll just stick to my analog that doesn't take batteries and go for the carbon top section and a new sail. Damn.. 
I would make the same call myself, given you probably need the top section + sail to make you competitive.

That being said I wouldn't buy a Tacktick today. I've never used the tactical mode, maybe it's helpful but it's pretty easy to know if you are headed or lifted based directly on the compass numbers.

 

velocitek

sailing electronics
279
37
Can you add an offset to the compass reading... if it's not mounted perfectly for instance? 
Nope. Here's the full user manual:

  1. Press the button to turn it on.
  2. Go sailing.
  3. Press and hold the button to turn it off. 

If you forget step 2, it will turn off automatically after sitting still on dry land for 1 minute.

 
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velocitek

sailing electronics
279
37
frant said:
I have been using the Micro Compass on my laser since Jan.  I find the tactical function to be most useable.  I like the  adjustable resolution in tactical mode and adjustable tacking angle gives an easily memorised picture of what is going on wrt wind direction. Have you considered including these features?(as well as a start timer function) Admittedly I have not used the compass heading only  function other than to check start line. All of my comments are referenced against previous use of a magnetic tactical compass.
The pros and Olympians we interviewed in the early stages of developing the Prism were unanimous in asking for an accurate, tilt compensated, heading readout between 0 and 359 degrees, so that's the direction we went with this product. We found that making decisions based on observations of this single three digit number is a specific skill (almost like muscle memory) that elite dinghy sailors develop through years of practice. They are generally not keen to learn a new system. 

Keeping the feature list as short as possible is also something that we have done with all our products. Our goal is to make the instrument an island sanctuary of simplicity in the sea of chaos that is sailboat racing; we want it to be one thing you can always count on being able to understand and control.

That's not to say that there isn't good value in other approaches. Different strokes for different folks.

 

vox

Member
62
0
The pros and Olympians we interviewed in the early stages of developing the Prism were unanimous in asking for an accurate, tilt compensated, heading readout between 0 and 359 degrees, so that's the direction we went with this product.
Does the Prism do the 9-axis based heading like the Shift does?

 

velocitek

sailing electronics
279
37
Does the Prism do the 9-axis based heading like the Shift does?
It calculates heading in a different way than the Shift (which uses a standard 9-axis sensor fusion algorithm). We're looking into applying for a patent on how the Prism calculates heading, so it's not something I can discuss at the moment but the end result is a tilt-compensated heading in degrees magnetic that gets updated every 250 milliseconds.

 
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Ben G

Member
156
1
Brisbane
Pity it doesn't have a timer like the tacktick, which is very helpful on crewed dinghys as everyone knows the time to start.

Can you comment on the resolution and directional damping compared to the tacktick? I find the tacktick heading hard to rely on for changes below about 10 degrees.

I generally dismiss heading changes five degrees or less as noise.  In fact because of this uncertainty I still rely mostly on intuition regarding wind changes.

Whether because of heel, boat bouncing around, or other small oscillations I wouldn't know. 

Tacktick is still handy to pick up new changes at the beginning of a beat or gybe.

 

velocitek

sailing electronics
279
37
Resolution is 1 degree. Default damping is less than the Tacktick Micro but this can be adjusted if you need something different. The finished product will be a little bit better than this:

https://www.dropbox.com/s/x6jja1etl7eili9/VID_20171212_225704.mp4?dl=0

We left the timer off, to simplify the device and because having a separate timer like the Ronstan Clearstart (which you can still mast mount) allows you to see your heading during the start sequence.

 
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pidry

New member
38
1
Germany
So, essentially, it is the same as the tacktick, PLUS bigger digits (which for me never where a problem with the tacktick) MINUS the "tactic" mode and MINUS the timer. And the answer to the missing timer is "Go buy a seperate timer"? For me, that makes ... plus 1 minus 2 minus "stupid answer" ... I think I will keep the TackTick!

 

FromTheRail

Member
204
8
Perth
So, essentially, it is the same as the tacktick, PLUS bigger digits (which for me never where a problem with the tacktick) MINUS the "tactic" mode and MINUS the timer. And the answer to the missing timer is "Go buy a seperate timer"? For me, that makes ... plus 1 minus 2 minus "stupid answer" ... I think I will keep the TackTick!
I've never used the timer on my TackTick, too fiddly and rather to have it on my wrist, plus my watch vibrates :wub:

 

Mr. Squirrel

Super Anarchist
So, essentially, it is the same as the tacktick, PLUS bigger digits (which for me never where a problem with the tacktick) MINUS the "tactic" mode and MINUS the timer. And the answer to the missing timer is "Go buy a seperate timer"? For me, that makes ... plus 1 minus 2 minus "stupid answer" ... I think I will keep the TackTick!
You forgot the battery.  I have taken apart upwards of 10 tackticks (micros and racemasters) and gotten a total of 2 to come back from the dead.  The fact the Prism has a user replaceable battery is like plus 17 to me.  So make that 18 plus 2 minus.  Enjoy buying a new tacktick in 2 years when the battery dies!

MS

 

velocitek

sailing electronics
279
37
I've never used the timer on my TackTick, too fiddly and rather to have it on my wrist, plus my watch vibrates :wub:
That's pretty much spot on with the input we received from the pros and Olympians we interviewed in developing the Prism.

  1. They wear watches or mount one on the mast or boom
  2. Having to switch from timer to compass and back to timer in prestart to take a wind shot is really inconvenient on a boat with 1-3 crew
 

jackolantern

Super Anarchist
1,631
466
Based on your video it seems like the Prism settles in on a new heading number much quicker than the Tacktick ever manages to. Coming out of a tack it feels like the Micro takes a couple seconds to get reoriented to the new world. 

 

gsasquatch

New member
17
1
Why are these things so spendy?

$10 for the compass, 

https://www.adafruit.com/product/1746

$4 for the display

https://www.mouser.com/Optoelectronics/Displays/LCD-Displays/LCD-Numeric-Display-Modules/_/N-6j739/

$15 for the solar panel

https://www.amazon.com/Aoshike-Sunpower-Polycrystalline-Photovoltaic-Battery/dp/B01N2UXKI1

$4 for the battery

https://www.amazon.com/Rechargeable-Underwater-Crosstour-DROGRACE-ODRVM/dp/B0719DB8Z6/ref=sr_1_20?ie=UTF8&qid=1517322985&sr=8-20&keywords=5v+lithium+ion+battery

$4 for the brains

https://www.amazon.com/4-pack-Atmega328p-pu-Socket-Arduino-Bootloader/dp/B01263IMU8/ref=sr_1_4?ie=UTF8&qid=1517323075&sr=8-4&keywords=arduino+chip

It's less than $40 for the major components at retail  pricing taking 2 minutes to find.     Even if allowing for a $13 case, that's still 1/8 the asking price.   I don't see why these things aren't $100.     You can get a gps watch with a fancy color display, or a phone with a magnetometer and all sorts of radios for $100, and this isn't close to the complexity of those. 

 

vox

Member
62
0
If it’s so cheap and easy then you should build one! You’ll find it’s more challenging to bring a finished product to market than you think. 

 

Texas Strong

Super Anarchist
1,047
3
Why are these things so spendy?

$10 for the compass, 

https://www.adafruit.com/product/1746

$4 for the display

https://www.mouser.com/Optoelectronics/Displays/LCD-Displays/LCD-Numeric-Display-Modules/_/N-6j739/

$15 for the solar panel

https://www.amazon.com/Aoshike-Sunpower-Polycrystalline-Photovoltaic-Battery/dp/B01N2UXKI1

$4 for the battery

https://www.amazon.com/Rechargeable-Underwater-Crosstour-DROGRACE-ODRVM/dp/B0719DB8Z6/ref=sr_1_20?ie=UTF8&qid=1517322985&sr=8-20&keywords=5v+lithium+ion+battery

$4 for the brains

https://www.amazon.com/4-pack-Atmega328p-pu-Socket-Arduino-Bootloader/dp/B01263IMU8/ref=sr_1_4?ie=UTF8&qid=1517323075&sr=8-4&keywords=arduino+chip

It's less than $40 for the major components at retail  pricing taking 2 minutes to find.     Even if allowing for a $13 case, that's still 1/8 the asking price.   I don't see why these things aren't $100.     You can get a gps watch with a fancy color display, or a phone with a magnetometer and all sorts of radios for $100, and this isn't close to the complexity of those. 
Hey! I'm shopping for a new car, could I pay you $8,000 to build me a new F-150 with parts off of Amazon? I feel like those Ford Motor Company bandits in Detroit are building the car for 17 cents and some belly button lint and ripping me off. 

Thanks! XOXO

 
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Ross

Super Anarchist
3,574
14
So, essentially, it is the same as the tacktick, PLUS bigger digits (which for me never where a problem with the tacktick) MINUS the "tactic" mode and MINUS the timer. And the answer to the missing timer is "Go buy a seperate timer"? For me, that makes ... plus 1 minus 2 minus "stupid answer" ... I think I will keep the TackTick!
Like I said, I'll stick with my analog for that price!

 

mgiraldi

Member
112
0
The pros and Olympians we interviewed in the early stages of developing the Prism were unanimous in asking for an accurate, tilt compensated, heading readout between 0 and 359 degrees, so that's the direction we went with this product. We found that making decisions based on observations of this single three digit number is a specific skill (almost like muscle memory) that elite dinghy sailors develop through years of practice. They are generally not keen to learn a new system. 

Keeping the feature list as short as possible is also something that we have done with all our products. Our goal is to make the instrument an island sanctuary of simplicity in the sea of chaos that is sailboat racing; we want it to be one thing you can always count on being able to understand and control.

That's not to say that there isn't good value in other approaches. Different strokes for different folks.
I am looking to replace the microcompass, I am not olympic leve sailorl and for this reason I do enjoy the tactical function of the Tactick. When I used a regular compass it was a tactical compass on a laser, so it unfortunate that the Prism does not offer the option of the tactical function. Pitty real Pitty. 

The Shift is not good either because you need to set up the tacks manually, I cannot immagine doing that on a dinghy. This will require the crew to get off the trapeze come in to set it, far from ideal. Similarly on a single boat you need to stop to do that. I wished you took inspiration from the Tactick Race Master for the Shift.

I do agree with you that the timer is not needed. 

 

pidry

New member
38
1
Germany
You forgot the battery.  I have taken apart upwards of 10 tackticks (micros and racemasters) and gotten a total of 2 to come back from the dead.  The fact the Prism has a user replaceable battery is like plus 17 to me.  So make that 18 plus 2 minus.  Enjoy buying a new tacktick in 2 years when the battery dies!

MS
True enough. Heard that story a lot of times ... altough my TackTick Micro Compass has been running without any problems and is going into its 13th season ... but I have had battery problems on my phone (a lot, but who doesn't), so, yes, a replacable battery is somewhere at +100 ... ;-)

 

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