Nothing will motivate a man to move forward faster than knowing what's behind Him.

Archive for the ‘electronics’ Category

The Solar Energy Equation

power needed x 2 = inverter power

if you needed 250 watts

250 X 2 = 500

500 would be your inverter power

inverter power / 500 = batteries @ 100ah

500 / 500 = 1 battery @ 100am

if your inverter power was 750-1000 watts you would want 2 batteries @ 100ah

if your inverter power was 2000 watts you would want 4 100ah batteries.

solar panels =  90 watts x 100ah batteries

if you had 1 100ah battery you would want 90 watts of solar panels to be useful  

keep in mind that 15 watts = approx. 1 amp.   an ideal charging rate is 10 amps which is about 150 watts.  

if you had 2 100ah batteries you would want 180 watts of solar panels.

Don’t get me wrong, you can have a 45 watt solar panel system but don’t let your battery go flat 11.9 volts you will be days on end to top off your 100ah battery


The ideal beginner solar system would be 500 watt inverter, 1 100ah battery and 90 watts of solar panels.   


My Solar Transfer Switch

This is my Solar Transfer Switch, I made it to switch from house current to my solar panels during peak rates.

TomTom VIA 1505 GPS

I purchased this device hoping for a simple way to find those out of the way places.  I purchased the lifetime maps edition.   I already have two GPSs, just thought I’d see what else is out there since they would be out dated soon.  One of the most peculiar things about this device is…..some genius thought is was a good idea to put a screen saver on it.  A screen saver is the dumbest thing to be put on a gps.  Oh, when you are driving down the road, the first thing you want is some advertising to come up on the device that’s showing you how to get where you want to go. 

I know, I know, there is probably a way to disable it.  but it is a waste of memory, a waste of time and a waste of money.   The view map mode seems to be an after thought.  It’s not like you have all the displays that you do when you have a programmed destination.   I programmed in my home location and on my way home It gave a few directions and then went to a screen saver.   Yes the voice continued to give instructions but where is my display of speed, direction and other features I chose in the set up.   There are laws that prohibit fiddling with phones, gps and other electronics while driving and what to tomtom do….they cause you to have to touch the screen to get back to your map and status.  

That same genius was probably the same one that thought it necessary to put a notice on the screen to let the driver know that “NO ROUTE PLANNED”.  

I went on the website and noticed problems that others were having and I realized that I didn’t have the patients for this.   I’ll stick to my garmin nuvi 1300 and the NEXTAR.   screen saver TomTom, REALLY!!!, why?  

Acer Iconia A500: getting a quick fix on satellites

I have a tom Tom wireless Bluetooth GPS MkII.  This is only a GPS receiver. I also  downloaded Bluetooth GPS driver for android.  It only takes a few minutes to find several satellites and get a fix.  once a fix is obtained, you are set.   A little scary, I was setting in my living room when I went into google maps and the little blue dot was on the roof of my house.  As I picked up the receiver and my Iconia a500 and walked outside…. so did the little blue dot.  In the status mode it indicated 10 satellites in view, 6 in use and an accuracy of 14.7m.  all with without a network connection.  When I use GPSFix after installing the tom tom, it only takes a few seconds to get a fix.  

This does not remedy the problem with Google’s refusal to allow downloads of it’s maps.  You will still need to be connected to the internet to find address’s and navigation.   However, I did down load Sygic: GPS navigation and it works to that end.  But I deleted it because it was to cumbersome.   I have a Portable GPS that has Sygic Maps, think it is a Sylvania.  It has a better interface and I like the lane assist. Over all it is a good mapping system, all though the quality of the unit itself leaves a lot to be desired.  The power connection worked loose, the battery ran hot and started to blow fuses and the off/on switch finally pushed through.   I thought it was just a fluke but I bought another one and sure enough the power connection was loose from the start.  

I now have Nextar and my wife have a Garmin, as portables they work fine.  the Nextar that I have immediately went unsupported and now have old maps.   The old Nextar was the reason I bought the Sylvania.   By now you must realize that these two Nextar and Sylvania are worthless junk.  I took the second Sylvania back for a refund.  

I wish Sygic would adapt the mapping program thats on the Sylvania SGPD432 for the Acer Iconia A500.   I’d buy that application. I think they would give google maps a run for their money.   I think I paid over $70.00 for that unit.

Acer Iconia A500

I thought after the A100 that Acer would have produced a more perfect machine.  Well there are a few quirks that should have been addressed.  for instance, the memory chip and it’s housing.  The door is flimsy and it would have been more convenient to have a SDHC instead of of the micro SD.

Question Acer…..On your fancy keyboard that pops up when you touch on a text input box, where are the cursor keys?  You know the ones with the arrows up, down, left and right.   I don’t think I have ever seen a keyboard in modern techno history without cursor keys, even the XT’s had them, remember those.

It comes with a HDMI proprietary connection, but no cord.  Guess I’m expected to buy one from  Acer.   There was a demo set up in Wal-Mart but they didn’t carry the cords.

DO NOT depend on the navigation.  It seems at though Acer was trying to play catch up and stuffed a lot of applications  and didn’t pay attention to the details.  When you finally get the navigation to work, don’t touch the screen, it will go back to the desktop and you will have to do it all over again.  Oh yeah, in case you are moving, your co-pilot will not be able to get it to work.  You will have to pull over.  It does a good job keeping up with where you are…as far as telling you how to get where you are going…not so much.  It’s more like a tracking app to work with those android apps from tv stations and news paper websites that is so conveniently offered FREE!!  I have just spent $400.00 for a gadget so that other people can keep track of my every move.   Apparently this thing can not recalibrate while you are moving.   It loses satelite connection every time you enter a new destination.    Bottom line is, the navigation system is worthless, unless you have time on your hands and you want to set out in an open area and play around with it.   It is not going to replace my portable GPS.

Oh yeah, there is the good, but I wouldn’t pay $400.00 for the good it offers.    The music and video player are great, I wish I could have gotten my 500 gig HD to work on it.   I have to go through my laptop to transfer the audio and movie files.   A USB mouse and keyboard works great with it, especially a keyboard with CURSOR keys.  Acer should have one up-ed the competition by providing a carrying case.   The directory app leaves a lot to be desired, drag and drop,  create, rename, go figure.   To do all my drive maintenance, I have to hook it up to my WINDOWs laptop.

It’s great for text messaging, although high traffic on this venue will send up a red flag and you may find yourself having to verify your E-Mail account.   Email I pretty good.  You can manage several accounts and although you may have and individual on one account their e-mail address will pop up on any other of you accounts when you start typing their name.


The 10.1 screen does well for watching movies, would have been nice to be able to hook it up to my external hard drive to watch movies, instead I’d have to use my laptop to transfer the movie, but then I end up watching it on my laptop with bigger screen and better sound.
I’m not so inclined to by the extra gadgets that’s available for The Iconia A500 such as the docking station/keyboard/remote.   Looking at the base unit and all it’s short coming, I don’t see how the extras would fair any better.

To be continued…..

Tag Cloud