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"Review" ipad 3G with VMS/Mud Maps app as a GPS

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  • "Review" ipad 3G with VMS/Mud Maps app as a GPS


    As I have been investigating what type of Off Road GPS I was going to use/purchase & liked the user friendly VMS 500s & was able to borrow 1 from my friends at Creightons TJM.. I was a little hesitant as I found the maps to small & was discussing that on here with others, when CeeJay happen to mention VMS were about to release an app for the iPone/iPad so after a few others showed interest & not many reports I contacted VMS & had a long chat with them & can say that they have supplied me with a VMS app for my iphone/iPad which I've had for a few weeks & found great on the iPhone but very small meaning you would be looking for the paper maps as well,
    (Just wish to make a point here that just because the iPad is a lot easier to use due to map size always make sure you carry the paper maps as a back up, I know I will be).
    On delivery of my iPad 3G today,
    (The 3G model also gets the GPS I am not going to be installing a sim card to use the 3G so this will tell us just how good the GPS in the iPad works),
    I loaded the VMS app & was impressed. Just have a look at the iTopo map below:



    As with the iPhone you just spread your fingers or pinch together to zoom in & out, easy as to use that feature, I can say I can't wait to hit some tracks to see how it goes. I have also been in contact with GPSOZ who are the suppliers of Ram mounts in Australia & have a mount coming hopefully in the next week or so.

    By now most will know that Mud Maps & the VMS apps are the same except the VMS app sells through iTunes for $199,
    (on sale $149 or was at time of this post), & pre loaded with Gregory's http://www.mud-maps.com/map-show-S28 & iTopo Maps http://www.mud-maps.com/map-show-S16

    MudMaps is a free app again through iTunes but maps are purchased as you want them,
    (the links to show the maps is exactly as the 2 above), If you wish to go that way look out for specials as was the case over Easter.

    This will be an on going review as I said so as I'm waiting on the Ram mount I'll just be having a little play to get familiar with the iPad for starters & then the VMS app...

    At this Point I'd like to thank Li From :
    ,who said "look glad to help you out & look forward to reading what you think of the app".

    It goes without saying that this will be a real world test & will be stated & supported by pics as I see it.

    Li it was refreshing to hear you say "great that's how we like it"!

    Gus.

    This thread is for the Review only post questions relating to it otherwise this thread is still going:

    advice on iPad for 4wd mapping (VMS app, maps, etc)
    http://www2.pajeroclub.com.au/forum/...ad.php?t=16480

    Jim (
    achjimmy) will be helping out with the review as well, he has been using the iPad for a while with Mud Maps.

    Note: By the way I purchased a refurbished 1st generation iPad 16GB WiFi + 3G for $538 Delivered to the door from the on line Apple Shop.
    It being refurbished gets complete over haul inc new case, battery books & box. Comes with same 1 Year warranty as a new iPad.. They only get limited stock so you may have to wait a while like i did, checking each day.
    VX 200 Series 4.5L Twin Turbo-Diesel V8 Landcruiser HERE
    NM Exceed 3.2 DID Auto Pajero. (SOLD) With a few Mods. HERE

    How to get Forum Decals

  • #2
    Thanks Gus,

    Pics pics pics, I know you have 1 there,but when you get the RAM mount I expect to see more pics

    I know achjimmy has an iPad and has been using it off road as well, I'd still see your review too.

    Cheers
    Anthony.
    Cheers
    Anthony

    Pajero RX 2011 3.2 DiD Auto, Warm White, 265/65/18 BFG AT's, Bushskinz Intercooler - sump - transmission - transfer case & Rear bumper guard & sliders, Neoprene seat covers, Factory Towbar, GME 3540 UHF, Rhino Sportz racks, ARB awning, Safari snorkel, Rhino steel platform, Black Widow drawers, Dual Battery, ARB fridge, ARB rear locker, ARB Deluxe bar, Warn Winch, OME Suspension

    Wants:
    more time off to go 4wd'ing and camping

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by mil098 View Post
      Thanks Gus,

      Pics pics pics, I know you have 1 there,but when you get the RAM mount I expect to see more pics

      I know achjimmy has an iPad and has been using it off road as well, I'd still see your review too.

      Cheers
      Anthony.
      Hi Anthony, I'll have a lot more pics & a link to the Ram mounts soon.
      Jim will be adding to this review as he has gone the Mud Map way & purchasing maps as needed.

      Gus.
      VX 200 Series 4.5L Twin Turbo-Diesel V8 Landcruiser HERE
      NM Exceed 3.2 DID Auto Pajero. (SOLD) With a few Mods. HERE

      How to get Forum Decals

      Comment


      • #4
        I hope to be hitting a few tracks next weekend, but as I have had time to get familiar with using the VMS app on the iPad I thought I'd let you know so far very impressed.

        Gus.
        VX 200 Series 4.5L Twin Turbo-Diesel V8 Landcruiser HERE
        NM Exceed 3.2 DID Auto Pajero. (SOLD) With a few Mods. HERE

        How to get Forum Decals

        Comment


        • #5
          Well sorry to say due to the bad weather We won't be going off road this weekend. Also the mounts are still out of stock...
          VX 200 Series 4.5L Twin Turbo-Diesel V8 Landcruiser HERE
          NM Exceed 3.2 DID Auto Pajero. (SOLD) With a few Mods. HERE

          How to get Forum Decals

          Comment


          • #6
            Thats ok Gus,

            Just play the games on the iPad anyway ;-)
            Cheers
            Anthony

            Pajero RX 2011 3.2 DiD Auto, Warm White, 265/65/18 BFG AT's, Bushskinz Intercooler - sump - transmission - transfer case & Rear bumper guard & sliders, Neoprene seat covers, Factory Towbar, GME 3540 UHF, Rhino Sportz racks, ARB awning, Safari snorkel, Rhino steel platform, Black Widow drawers, Dual Battery, ARB fridge, ARB rear locker, ARB Deluxe bar, Warn Winch, OME Suspension

            Wants:
            more time off to go 4wd'ing and camping

            Comment


            • #7
              For those that are interested in a short video of it in action have a look here
              http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T4vfgpk2vTE

              In an effort to resolve the "postional error" that the Gregories "Snowy Tour Map" has i took some video. You will see me switching between the "snowy tour" and the "itopo" where my finger points on the “snowy tour” is approximately where we are in location. The "iTopo" map is the showing correct location to Map postion.

              I have to say Mud Maps have been very good in response to any issues. I emailed them Easter Sunday and had a reply on the easter Monday agreeing they had also found the fault and had passed it on to Gregories UBD . A follow up email today was replied to within 15 minutes advising that there has been no fix. So at least Mud Maps are on the ball in this regard. In the case of the snowies the MMCS also worked well so the error was of no consquence, futher into the bush may be different.
              Last edited by achjimmy; 17-05-11, 02:08 PM.
              Travel safe

              Jim

              MY13 Landcrusier VX
              MY10 Pajero Platnium with bits now sold to Spiderpig.
              99 Rodeo TD dual cab.

              Comment


              • #8
                Mud Map review

                I thought I will kick this off as I have had this app and maps quite a while and had a chance to have a play on a few occasions. As mentioned Gus will be doing the VMS app which apparently is the same only preloaded with map, more later.

                Note as has been mentioned, only the ipad 3G has a GPS. I have a wifi only iPad as well and it will work Mud Map and allow you to read maps but the location is in effective.


                The mud map app is a free iPhone / iPad app that gives you the conduit to access additional maps. Once installed and you create a sign in account (yes another bloody one, get used to them) it gives you free access to a handful of maps none of any real importance to us here in Australia other than the Gregory?s Australian base map. This map shows major routes and is of little use other than an overview. I might sound blas? I am mindful that at this point nothing has cost a cent! And the Gregory?s base map is as equally useful as a road atlas and less easily lost. So at this point I figure your $30 up (cost of road Atlas)

                Your account gives you access to purchase an array of maps to cover all aspects of Australia down to approximately 1-25k scale. You can either log into your account and view and purchase the maps on a PC where your purchases go into a queue to await you downloading them on to you iPad/iPhone. Or you can access your account through the iPad/iPhone and view and purchase your maps there, and this has been my preferred option. The ipad interface is brilliant and starts by asking permission to use you location and then list maps available that are closest to your current location, or you can choose by region. This really is a neat feature, and handy when out and about if you run a data card in your 3G ipad and have a reliable signal you can then download maps straight into your device. I am pretty sure there is a limit on the size that can be download over 3G but any of your average area maps are fine. This pretty much got me out of the poo down the snowy, as I have mentioned previously the pre purchased ?snowy mountains tour map? from Gregory?s was excellent in detail but there is an issue with its alignment and the map was showing my location some 5-10k south of where I actually was. Fortunately this was discovered whilst driving on the sealed road but did result in us missing the turn to ?hobs hole ravine? So on the second day when we were heading towards Tom Groggin to look at some tracks I logged in to my Mud Map account that morning and in 10 minutes had downloaded the local iTopo 1:250,000 scale map for the area. This immediately confirmed my correct position and allowed us to have a day travelling around safe in the knowledge of where we were. The detail on these maps is great. Another neat feature is the zoom function where providing you have the different scale maps loaded it will seamlessly step down to the highest detail map.


                PC Home page


                iPad home page

                This app is for both the iPhone and IPad, but the resolution quality is very high so its makes great use of the ipads high resolution screen, but unfortunately does not support landscape which is a great aspect to view apps on the iPad. Perhaps this will come? Even though this app looks like a blown up iPhone app it is not. The menu pop up function works differently on each device and it is a pleasure to use on the iphone as well. To be honest I find that I use the iPad Mud Map app more at rest and sharing route discussions with others and when planning and use the iphone more whist driving, I feel the iphone is easier to manage on the dash or windscreen mount and for ?off-road? driving we do not need to watch the map that closely.

                The interface is simple and intuitive, and familiar to iphone users. A quick push on the home button in the lower left will see your current location centered on the screen, another tap brings the map into the ?map up? position, tap again and its ?north up?, tap again and back to ?heading up? .I also found that while using it in the in ?heading up? position trying to zoom or move the map by touching it would cause it to default to back to ?map up? position , I found this annoying.

                On the top left you have your compass needle always showing North then you have the option of displaying your current Lat/long position

                Centre bottom is your zoom option the + or ? being grayed out if there is no option to go further. You can you use the familiar apple ?pinching? to zoom in or out (keeping in mind the annoyance above), but if the maps loaded are at the limit of there zoom you will get no more detail just enlarge what?s there (hope that makes sense?)

                On the lower right is your menu, this is a ?pop up? style. Find a place is a simple search, which has worked very well so far. So in conjunction with your free base Gregory?s map you have an interactive road atlas. Next is Map list which shows all your Maps you have chosen to download (either free or purchased), there publishers and other free maps available (downloading NZ Linz map as I write)
                Third we have track log and way points which I have not really got into yet so I will come back on this later, I am sure Gus will get into this some more as well. The way point entering seems very simple with a choice to enter either by your current position, position on the map or by coordinate. Fifth we have settings which allow you to sign in to your account (and stay signed in), choose between units and Coordinate formats. And lastly the help menu which is very clear and precise on each of the above categories, and steps you through using each.


                iPad pop up menu, same on iPhone just it takes the whole screen where as it is only 1/4 of the iPads screen

                All in all a great free app that if you do no more than download the free maps you will find to be very useful. But I find that I am loading maps in as I plan to go to areas. The maps individually are very cheap, but if you are really into an area it might pay to buy the entire area or state as a group although the size of these maps may be a an issue on your device, recently promoted was the detailed maps of the entire Vic high Country but the size was 14gb! But individually the maps are well priced. The last screen shot is my account page with the maps for Centre Australia. They are $27 for all 6 in a series or $6 each. Generally each map is priced less than its printed equivalent and you can review the map before you purchase.


                PC home page with WA outback maps selected

                Overall and considering the cost to get into this if you have either device you cant go wrong. I know a few of you are getting or got the VMS app that includes the Gregory?s and iTopo maps when you purchase it so providing you are going to use those maps I would think that the VMS app is exceptional value. I am sure Gus?s review will have some great detail and shots as he has a great knack for contributing good reports and reviews.

                Providing you have either device this app is a no brainer. Would I buy a specific device just to be able to run this app, I am not sure. That?s not a reflection on the app or mud maps but more my concern over Apples refusal to address storage issues on its devices. But given that the iPad is such a useful tool for so many other things whilst you are travelling they are easy to justify in my opinion as I don?t travel with a PC.

                As always don?t make this your primary source of mapping, and make sure you have a means of charging it besides your cars battery.

                Below I have listed a few pros and cons, none of which are major issues to me.

                Thanks for reading.

                Jim

                Pro?s

                Friendly user interface
                speedy response to support questions
                Utilizes everyday devices, iphone, ipad
                Free!



                Cons

                App does not allow the device to sleep unless you positively lock it
                Lack of landscape mode on ipad
                Memory required eventually may be an issue for i devices?
                Annoying habit of defaulting to ?map up? when touching the screen.


                Gregory's Snowy tour


                iTopo J5503 Khancobin area
                Last edited by achjimmy; 20-05-11, 05:45 PM. Reason: update pics
                Travel safe

                Jim

                MY13 Landcrusier VX
                MY10 Pajero Platnium with bits now sold to Spiderpig.
                99 Rodeo TD dual cab.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Very well done Jim..
                  You've made it easy for me mate as the VMS app is the same just preloaded.. so rather than double up I'll be adding to the above..
                  (all I've got to do is hit the tracks...)

                  Gus.
                  VX 200 Series 4.5L Twin Turbo-Diesel V8 Landcruiser HERE
                  NM Exceed 3.2 DID Auto Pajero. (SOLD) With a few Mods. HERE

                  How to get Forum Decals

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    simply brilliant Jim.
                    Cheers
                    Anthony

                    Pajero RX 2011 3.2 DiD Auto, Warm White, 265/65/18 BFG AT's, Bushskinz Intercooler - sump - transmission - transfer case & Rear bumper guard & sliders, Neoprene seat covers, Factory Towbar, GME 3540 UHF, Rhino Sportz racks, ARB awning, Safari snorkel, Rhino steel platform, Black Widow drawers, Dual Battery, ARB fridge, ARB rear locker, ARB Deluxe bar, Warn Winch, OME Suspension

                    Wants:
                    more time off to go 4wd'ing and camping

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Good reviews and info guys. I would really hope that VMS look to develop for Android also - for the most part this would address all the cons identified by Jim.
                      SOLD - MY2011 NT DiD Pajero GLX. ARB winch bar, Lightforce XGT HID's, Warn 9000lb winch, Factory rear difflock, ARB roofrack with Supa-Peg awning, Bushskinz, Safari snorkel, Lovells springs, Bilstein shocks, Mickey Thompson ATZ 4 rib 265/70/17.
                      Time for a D4.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by iGBH View Post
                        Good reviews and info guys. I would really hope that VMS look to develop for Android also - for the most part this would address all the cons identified by Jim.
                        I'll be speaking to the guys at VMS in the next few days or so, I'll ask the question...

                        Gus.

                        Edit 20/5 : Sorry to say that Mud Maps / VMS are not contemplating making the Apps for the Andriod phones.. (Straight from the horses mouth)
                        VX 200 Series 4.5L Twin Turbo-Diesel V8 Landcruiser HERE
                        NM Exceed 3.2 DID Auto Pajero. (SOLD) With a few Mods. HERE

                        How to get Forum Decals

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                        • #13
                          Thanks for the kind report guys. Gus it wasnt my intention to get you out of work mate!

                          I had some time and I thought whilst it was fresh and i had been working on the "snowy mountain tour" map error for Mud Map that i would write it. I am also looking at beta testing the next version so thought i should get in now on the current version.

                          I have a few more maps (both Gregory's and iTopo) so will be checking out some more. The Blue mountains tour looks interesting and its in my back yard.

                          Really i put down the cons but they are only small my biggest beef is with Gregory's UBD Snowy map and the postional error within the map. The Mud Map app and its interface is brillant.

                          There was discussion on a Andriod app but not a Win mobile version (think Win mobile is doomed between Apple OS and Andriod)
                          Travel safe

                          Jim

                          MY13 Landcrusier VX
                          MY10 Pajero Platnium with bits now sold to Spiderpig.
                          99 Rodeo TD dual cab.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Just received from VMS...

                            Mud Map
                            semi-located member
                            Join Date: May 2010
                            Posts: 44


                            Mud Map v3 Preview.
                            Hi Guys,

                            We've been working long & hard on version 3.x of the Mud Map outdoor GPS app for iOS devices and I'm excited to announce that it's coming soon!

                            Version 3 has stacks of new features, a 3D vector map engine & redesigned UI. Detailed specs will be available closer to release but here are some screenshots to wet your appetite!


                            3D map view


                            Map view of Birdsville Track


                            Menu


                            Address Search


                            Favorite Maps


                            Map at my location - Raster Preview


                            Maps at my location - Vector Preview


                            Li tells me that:
                            When Mud Map V3.0 is released, the VMS app will also be updated to V3.0. The differences between these apps are that the VMS includes both iTOPO & Gregory?s map bundles.

                            Customers who have already purchased the VMS app v2.x.x will receive a FREE upgrade to VMS v3.0 app via the App Store.

                            Also a new range of maps will be available shortly.. These maps will cover the same geographic area as the Roof Top range of paper maps,
                            (these are the maps which are so popular for using in the Vic High Country), Li says " They are even better than the Roof Top maps"
                            (Purchased through Mud Maps)

                            Gus.
                            VX 200 Series 4.5L Twin Turbo-Diesel V8 Landcruiser HERE
                            NM Exceed 3.2 DID Auto Pajero. (SOLD) With a few Mods. HERE

                            How to get Forum Decals

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Gus;150138 [/B
                              (these are the maps which are so popular for using in the Vic High Country), Li says " They are even better than the Roof Top maps"(Purchased through Mud Maps)

                              Gus.
                              Hmm... Rooftop maps are pretty good. Like to see them better it
                              Dave
                              NX Pampas Cat GLS MY16
                              Member 1228 Pajero Club

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