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ACR PLB Vs. SPOT

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Re: ACR PLB Vs. SPOT

Postby Klinger1986 » Tue Oct 01, 2013 3:37 pm

Sorry, I guess I did not do a very good job stating my question. I understand that they will not know that I have fallen, at that moment. I'm just wondering if I can be found after SAR is alerted to my disappearance.
“Don't cry because it's over, smile because it happened.” -Dr. Seuss

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Re: ACR PLB Vs. SPOT

Postby Rock-a-Fella » Tue Oct 01, 2013 3:41 pm

406 /121.5 Units require YOU to push activate. No tracking feature with no subscription.

You fall or get hit with rock and unconscious you have nothing to alert of your situation.

406 /121.5 units promote "Better tracking" and locator features using the 121.5 signal. This is aviation technology for downed aircraft.
GPS which even many PLB's have now eliminate the need for this signal.

More importantly "search" 121.5 signal receivers. They are big heavy and rarely carried into the BC.

Assuming you are able to "push the button" I am not of the opinion that 406 /121.5 improves or expedites your being located by SAR. It is similar at best if your 406 unit has a GPS feature. No GPS feature as much as 10 times slower

my $.02

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Re: ACR PLB Vs. SPOT

Postby Rock-a-Fella » Tue Oct 01, 2013 4:02 pm

This article is more for aviators but shows that the 121.5 feature that PLB companies promote is no not what it use to be

http://www.aea.net/AvionicsNews/ANArchives/Dec08TheEndIsNearFor1215MHz.pdf

Not a hater, just sayin'

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Re: ACR PLB Vs. SPOT

Postby mts4602 » Tue Oct 01, 2013 6:51 pm

REI has what look to be the same model ACRs listed at completely difference prices. I can't tell what is different. For instance they list one ACR SARlink at $400 and one SARlink at $500.

http://www.rei.com/category/40006527?version=V7
Matt

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Re: ACR PLB Vs. SPOT

Postby dave_navy_VA » Wed Oct 02, 2013 2:33 pm

mts4602 wrote:REI has what look to be the same model ACRs listed at completely difference prices. I can't tell what is different. For instance they list one ACR SARlink at $400 and one SARlink at $500.

http://www.rei.com/category/40006527?version=V7



I have the SARLINK #2885 "view." The main difference is that it has a tiny panel or display that tells you what's happening once you activate and gives you prompts to get the antenna up, etc. It also puts out the details when you do a self test. Other than that they are basically identical. The 2 links below are the user manuals for the 2885 view and the less-expensive 2883. Starting at p.20 of the 2885 manual you can see what the display provides and decide if that's worth the extra $100 or not.

ACR could do a better job of pointing out the differences w/o having to burrow into the manuals, but their stuff is really top-drawer.

http://www.acrartex.com/media/products/1467/133201355040730/Y1-03-0244H.pdf

http://www.acrartex.com/media/products/1466/133201354344153/Y1-03-0241-2F.pdf

The 2885 data sheet should have more details on the display features, but it has the basics.
http://www.acrartex.com/media/products/1467/1242011154210839/2885.pdf

Not easy to find, but they have promotions. Looks like this year (as it was last fall when I bought mine) that you can get some free stuff including the Firefly strobe.

http://www.acrartex.com/landing/2013springpromo/

edit: sorry for all the links but ACR basics are not all in 1 place: They do have some annual subscription plans that notify 1 or 5 recipients that you are OK when you do a self-test. The plan for 5 notifications lets you do a customized message and sends the coords to those 5, by text or email. I have the basic plan.
http://406link.com/plans.aspx
Last edited by dave_navy_VA on Wed Oct 02, 2013 3:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: ACR PLB Vs. SPOT

Postby jrs1965 » Wed Oct 02, 2013 2:54 pm

oldschoolczar wrote:If you are subscribing to 406link you get more "messages" with the SARLink. The "messages" are really just a test of transmission functionality but they can be used to communicate "I'm OK". I haven't pulled the trigger on buying one of these yet but I will soon. 406link seems like a good way to have some limited transmission of I'm ok messages and still having the best chance of rescue if the shite hits the an!


I did the research and ended up buying the ResQLink 406 PLB. I was impressed with the redundancy of the dual SAR satellite constellations and the lightweight of the device. This gave me a lot of confidence in my purchase vs. systems that use what I had read to be as unreliable commercial satellites.

However, I looked into message subscription service and decided not to subscribe. One drawback of the small size and weight is limited battery life. The device is factory sealed and would probably not last long with multiple "I'm OK" messages going out.

Regardless, love having it and hope I never have to push the button...

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Re: ACR PLB Vs. SPOT

Postby sheller » Wed Oct 09, 2013 8:50 am

I'm doing some research and looking to purchase an emergency device also. I definitely see the value of the PLB over the SPOT device. Is there a middle of the road option? I do need communication capability in a true emergency, but it is also very important to send messages to my wife who is always at home worrying. What about something like this-
http://www.amazon.com/DeLorme-AG-009871-201-inReach-Satellite-Communicator/dp/B00BX7TJ2O/ref=pd_sim_e_2

Any comments would be appreciated.

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Re: ACR PLB Vs. SPOT

Postby Duffus Kentucky Climber » Wed Oct 09, 2013 9:13 am

sheller wrote:I'm doing some research and looking to purchase an emergency device also. I definitely see the value of the PLB over the SPOT device. Is there a middle of the road option? I do need communication capability in a true emergency, but it is also very important to send messages to my wife who is always at home worrying. What about something like this-
http://www.amazon.com/DeLorme-AG-009871-201-inReach-Satellite-Communicator/dp/B00BX7TJ2O/ref=pd_sim_e_2

Any comments would be appreciated.


I may have missed it, but how much are the annual service plan fees?
It looks like the ridge is just right up there!

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Re: ACR PLB Vs. SPOT

Postby Rock-a-Fella » Wed Oct 09, 2013 9:15 am

InReach is billed monthly not annually like Spot. As low as $9.95 for basic

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Re: ACR PLB Vs. SPOT

Postby sheller » Wed Oct 09, 2013 9:22 am

That's correct. There are also some seasonal options if you want to opt into the more expensive plans (more messages, more track points, etc) for just 4 or 5 months. My main concern is satellite coverage. Does the Delorme have better satellite coverage than the SPOT???

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Re: ACR PLB Vs. SPOT

Postby CO Native » Wed Oct 09, 2013 9:24 am

Yes, the inreach uses a more advanced satellite system with better coverage providing more reliable messaging.

The InReach operates on the Iridium network. which is global, whereas Globalstar (which supports SPOT), is not. I was not able to find reliable reports on the coverage of Iridium vs Globalstar for the areas in which they overlap, but satellite phone retailers and reviewers almost unanimously favor Iridium.
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Re: ACR PLB Vs. SPOT

Postby Rock-a-Fella » Wed Oct 09, 2013 9:33 am

CO Native wrote:Yes, the inreach uses a more advanced satellite system with better coverage providing more reliable messaging.

The InReach operates on the Iridium network. which is global, whereas Globalstar (which supports SPOT), is not. I was not able to find reliable reports on the coverage of Iridium vs Globalstar for the areas in which they overlap, but satellite phone retailers and reviewers almost unanimously favor Iridium.


Here is a study comparing the two networks http://www.inreachdelorme.com/assets/pdf/Satellite-Telephone-Quality.pdf

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