Monthly Archives: October 2012

MobileMapper Field 3.0 and MobileMapper Office 4.0

I am really excited about this latest release! It is a big deal and every single issue that I have reported or requested is fully addressed. It is my opinion that MMField 3.0 is the best all-around tool for collecting precision GIS data available. It is easy to train new and inexperienced users, easy to use in the field and produces the most accurate data.
I have already completed a four-video training suite for this updated product! You can link to the videos (on YouTube) from [ here: video link ] In the videos, I cover installation, setting up template jobs, collecting data in the field, exporting (using data) and post-processing. I am quite sure the videos will save you time, if not bore you to death.
Here is a link to the ftp site folder:
  [ folder link ]
Here are direct links to the new User’s Manual:
  [ English: MMF / MMO User Manual ] [ Spanish ] [ French ] [ German ]
it is worth the read!
There are a lot of files (841MB) and if you are not familiar with FTP downloads, you will have difficulty getting the whole file set. I have provided a single ZIPed file:
  [ here: ZIPed File ] << Best link if you are inexperienced with FTP!
MobileMapper Field Changes
If you used MobileMapper Field and MobileMapper Office in the past, here are the new changes in Version 3 (MMO V4):
  1. Large virtual keyboard, click in an entry and use the full screen keyboard. (Small embedded keyboard still works too.)
  2. Single setting for English / Metric.
  3. Magnetic variation is taken into account for improved e-compass accuracy.
  4. Improved units management (single setting now).
  5. Crazy elevations in foot display fixed.
  6. Enhanced voice guidance (reporting distance and turn direction in MobileMapper Field  “go to” mode; reporting one major distance and direction to move in “go to” mode instead of two distances and two directions.) Voice guidance is now available in French, German, and Russian languages besides English.
  7. AXF improvements (supported limits for attribute values, text attributes can now contain quotation characters, performance/refactoring.)
  8. MMO: Office program allows re-projecting results into another export job folder. So data collected in one projection, and optionally post-processed, can be exported to a new folder in another projection.
  9. MMO: Office program now allows exporting to .GPX files. (In addition to .KML and .CSV files.)
  10. MMO: Office program does not crash when post-processing files that crashed previous versions.
  11. MMO: Office program now imports ATOM files directly as reference RAW data.
  12. Improved “go to” mode for close navigation in MobileMapper Field
  13. ECW background map format support.
  14. RTK initialization in MobileMapper Field.
  15. Possibility to re-occupy and update existing point feature coordinates with GPS position in the field. (Points only, not polylines or polygons.)
  16. Records raw data to the job folder (the same folder where the .MAP file is located) in MobileMapper Field.
  17. GPS metadata (STATUS, Number of SV’s, PDOP, HRMS, VRMS) as feature attributes in MobileMapper Field. These values are filled in automatically when new features are stored.
  18. Vertical offset in MobileMapper Field. Allows storing inverts to features from measurement point.
  19. Attribute editing during feature logging in MobileMapper Field. You can now edit feature attributes while averaging is active.
  20. Low memory warning in MobileMapper Field. When you nearly fill up the destination storage location, a warning is shown.
  21. GPS status display during averaging in MobileMapper Field.
  22. Showing GPS status when PDOP filter is being applied.
  23. Stop logging confirmation in MobileMapper Field.
  24. GPX data file recording in MobileMapper Field. Checkbox is found under ‘Options: Recording.’ (When enabled, GPX data is stored to \My Documents\Ashtech\gpx.gpx.) Setting is persistent when MobileMapper Field is restarted.
  25. Possibility to stop averaging early in MobileMapper Field.
  26. Reduced application startup time when using OSM map (loading it in background.) Yeah!
  27. Displaying coordinates of a location that user tap on a map. When you tap on the display screen, the coordinates where you taped are shown.
  28. Position status voice information.
  29. Reference station ID display, when using real time corrections.
  30. Displaying current RAW data file path/name in “Options: Recording” screen. Makes it easier to associate the correct RAW file with collected data.
  31. RAW data file is now automatically placed in the project folder, making it easier to keep raw data files with a project.
  32. International feet support
  33. OK soft key on the logged point screen
  34. L2 SNR display.
  35. …and much, much more!
Again, watch the videos and read the manual, they will save you time.


Filed under MM10, MM100 - PM100 - PM200, MM6

GNSS Solutions Version 3.80.4

The latest version of GNSS Solutions supporting PM120 and PM220 has been released.
Some of the items I am most excited about:
  Correctly imports jobs that earlier version broke into multipe occupations
  RINEX 3.01 support
  Updated Antenna Database (from NGS)
  Updated RGP and IGS Station Lists
  RINEX Convertor 4.2.1  Latest GEOIDS tool 1.1.0
  Fixed: ‘Land Survey Report’ failure under Vista and Win7
  Fixed: Partially imported Stop and Go files
  Fixed: Dynamic jobs errantly made from Static files
  Fixed: Antenna Heights not automatically set from imported files
  Fixed: Errant import of some Hatanaka compressed files
  Fixed: Antenna name not imported correctly on some files
  Fixed: GNSS Solutions won’t work on some Win7 computers
I have to tell you that a few of the fixed items have been making me crazy! This is a welcome release.
Information is available
  [ here ]
The folder containing the latest installation tools is
  [ here]
Because the tool is distributed as multiple files in an FTP folder, and will present problems for many users I have made a single ZIP file installation tool available:
  [ here: ZIPed Installer ] << Best link if you are inexperienced with FTP!


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Filed under GNSS Solutions

Geoid 2012 A for GNSS Solutions, Ashtech GEOIDS Program and MobileMapper Field

I did not see much chance of Spectra Precision / Ashtech releasing the GEOID12A model as a self installer so here is my implementation:

This is a digitally signed, self installing tool that should figure out where the correct place to put GEOIDS is and stick G12A there.

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Filed under Uncategorized

On / Off Switch on MobileMapper 100, ProMark 100, 120, 200, 220

Ok, the On/Off switch on the MobileMapper and ProMark series is hard to use. Hopefully an 8-minute video will straighten us all out. Really!

Check out: on YouTube

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Filed under MM100 - PM100 - PM200

Connecting a Z-Max/Z-Extreme to Network/VRS/DirectIP without a GSM Module

Connecting a Legacy Z-Max to VRS Network

This method works with both ‘SurvCE’ and ‘FAST Survey’.

The easiest way to connect a Z-Max (or Z-Extreme) to a NTRIP or Direct IP is not with the factory GSM module. It is with a data collector, connected to the internet by Wi-Fi through a Mi-Fi device (or Bluetooth to cellphone,) and a serial connection from a COM port on the data collector to the Z-Max.

To use Wi-Fi you will need a data collector that has Wi-Fi and a hardwired serial port (Carlson Surveyor+.) You may alternatively use a BlueTooth connection to a cell phone and a hardwired connection to a serial port (Ashtech MMCX, MM100, PM100, PM200, Carlson Allegro.)

Continue reading


Filed under Carlson, FAST Survey, Uncategorized

Musical Website Chairs

The website now redirects the to the website, which is the old Ashtech website with optical instruments added in. The old Spectra Precision website is now

So, I guess that the old SP website is going away.

I have to say that “Visually it looks like Ashtech took over SP.” Of Course We All Saw That Coming!

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Filed under Uncategorized

GEOID 2012A for Ashtech GNSS Solutions and the GEOID Extract Tool

Update 11 Oct 2012: Checkout the self installer tool [ here ]

GEOID 2012A has been out for a month now.

I complied Ashtech Geoid .GEO files and have made them available for download.

Decompress the ZIP file and then place the Geoid12A.geo file at this location (in Win7 64):

C:\Program Files (x86)\Common Files\Ashtech\Geoids

‘GNSS Solutions’ and the ‘Geoids’ extract tool will find the file the next time they are started.

If you are looking for GEOID12A for Carlson SurvCE, check out:

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Filed under Carlson, FAST Survey, GNSS Solutions, Uncategorized

Trimble vs. Spectra Precision Ashtech

Is it just me, or does the new Trimble GeoExplorer 5 look really similar to the SP Ashtech MobileMapper 100?

Image  Image

Just saying, they look similar, that’s all.

For more information:

GeoExplorer 5:

MobileMapper 100:

There is some interesting “fine print” at the bottom of the Geo5 information page: “Trimble GeoExplorer 5 series handhelds are available in most regions but will not be available initially in North America or China. For further information contact your local Trimble reseller.”

It also looks like the Geo5 won’t have the L2 capability of the MM100. I wonder what the pricing might be?


Filed under MM100 - PM100 - PM200, Uncategorized