Support Home > 3a. Configuring Offshore Navigator (or Offshore Nav. Lite) to the GPS - Basic Instructions
Electronics Hookup and Configuration
Connecting a GPS to a PC navigation software product can sometimes be a laborious process. Fortunately, we've included a GPS Setup Wizard with Offshore Navigator (and Offshore Navigator Lite) to streamline this process. However, if difficulties persist, or if a more complex configuration is required, an advanced setup procedure and troubleshooting steps are also available.
Automatic Configuration: The GPS Setup Wizard
The fastest and easiest way to get Offshore Navigator properly configured for your GPS is to use the GPS Setup Wizard. The Wizard will automatically detect your GPS, find out its make and model, and determine what COM port it is connected to on your computer. The Wizard will then make all necessary settings so Offshore Navigator can communicate with your GPS unit, and vice versa. If any connection problems are detected, the Wizard will likely tell you exactly how to fix them. All you have to do is click the Vessel/GPS menu, then, Setup, GPS Setup Wizard and follow the simple instructions on the screen.
When the Wizard is finished, Offshore Navigator will be ready to communicate with your GPS unit. To connect to the GPS, choose Vessel Position from GPS from the Vessel/GPS menu. To activate the moving chart display, click Follow Vessel - found in the lower left-hand corner of the chart display window.
Choose Setup, GPS from the Vessel/GPS menu to open the GPS and Autopilot Setup window. Unless you are attempting to use Offshore Navigator to transfer waypoints and routes to and from a GPS, we recommend choosing NMEA - generic for the GPS manufacturer. This will provide the best connection for real-time positioning. Set the Unit to NMEA 0183 and the COM Port to the port the GPS is connected to.
Related Technical Document: I don't know what COM Port my GPS is connected to. What should I do?
Next, select the Port Settings tab. Unless your GPS has been configured otherwise, set the Baud rate to 4800. Leave Parity at None, Data Bits at 8, and Stop Bits at 1. Check GPS On and press the Test button. If the GPS is properly connected, a test screen will appear. If an error occurs, go back and check the COM Port in the GPS Setup tab and/or the connections between the GPS and the computer.
Once the test is complete and the connection has been verified, Offshore Navigator will be ready to communicate with your GPS unit. To connect to the GPS, choose Vessel Position from GPS from the Vessel/GPS menu. To activate the moving chart display, click Follow Vessel - found in the lower left-hand corner of the chart display window.
Related Technical Documents
I don't know what COM Port my GPS is connected to. What should I do?
Connecting a Serial GPS to a USB Port
Using HyperTerminal to test and verify the GPS connection
Using MTTTY to test and verify the GPS connection
Determining the COM Port of a USB to Serial Adapter