Thursday, October 7, 2010
Adventure Pilot iFly 700
Handheld, sectional-chart, moving-map GPS
Like all handheld GPS devices, iFly 700 isn’t FAA-certified. Its primary purpose is to enhance a pilot’s ability to keep a situational “Big Picture” throughout the flight. As with many leading GPS handhelds, it employs the “gold standard,” the same SiRFstarIII GPS chip set that’s a key component of units from Garmin and other makers. It can process the signals of all visible GPS and WAAS satellites simultaneously, is very fast and is a real power miser.
A unique feature of the iFly is its lack of mechanical buttons. This is true touch-screen usability, with the same intuitive chops of an Apple iPhone or iPad.
Features...And More Features
The detailed charts display en route information you can easily zoom into or out of, effortlessly transition from one chart to another, and call up flight information, all with a tap or drag of a finger: fun and so easy.
Additional features include USB and MCX (external antenna) ports, an optional external GPS antenna ($18), a graphic display of TFRs, a “Nearest Airport” feature and a complete A/FD database. The operating voltage can range from 12 to 28 volts, for airplanes with 24-volt electrical systems. And there’s even a remote control. Why? In heavy turbulence, both button-centric and touch-screen input can be challenging. The handheld remote toggles commonly used features and mostly makes input a nonissue in a punchy cockpit.
Sophisticated and intuitive flight planning is input by touch or on-screen QWERTY keyboard.
Boyd and Strahan make software upgrades on a regular basis. The up-date due as of this writing included Terminal Area Charts and north-up/track-up orientation, oft-requested features from customers. “It’s a bit of a shock; I’ve always been a ‘north-up’ guy,” says Boyd.
Text on the sectional maps will be sideways when in track-up mode, but one touch can instantly toggle the system between track-up and north-up for quick reading.
For those who prefer always-up text, iFly has a “Vector” mode screen with basic GPS-common features such as airspaces and airports, major highways and the course line; and the text displays correctly, whatever the orientation.
ADS-B is another big feature on the upgrade horizon. This new technology uses satellite navigation to let aircraft and ground stations all see each other.
Vertical navigation, terrain warning voice prompts, streamlined IFR flight planning, NMEA serial output (for autopilots, fuel-flow computers and more—experimental aircraft only), simulated analog instruments including CDI (course deviation indicator), and road maps also are on the docket for future upgrades. All feature upgrades are software-enabled and included in the subscription.
The unit comes with a case, suction mount, AC and DC power cords and the remote control. How confident is the company in its product? Adventure Pilot offers a 30-day satisfaction guarantee or gives a full refund, including all shipping costs.
To learn more, visit www.iFlyGPS.com. A complete list of features can be found on the company’s website.
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