Options - Need input

Gentlemen:

I am trying to select the equipment and options for my soon to be born “baby”.
Specifically, I am trying to decide if the Skywatch is the right choice in light of the emerging new technologies or is it worthwhile to wait until the next generation product family is released with integrated PFD / MFD devices.

The other major issue is ARNAV’s EngineView vs. FADEC which we know is coming. On ARNAV’s site there is a lot of reference to the EngineView product used in conjunction with the SR20/22 but, strangely enough there is not too much info available on it on this forum. Any thoughts?

Thanks for your help,

Laz #143

Laz,
Decisions, decisions… It’s great fun choosing from among these options, isn’t it?
There has actually been quite a bit of discussion on the Forum about the ARNAV engine monitoring system, although not under the name “EngineView.” For one recent discussion thread, click hereclick here.
Cheers,
Roger
PS: Just a gentle reminder regarding the salutation of your message — this forum is frequented by SR20/22 pilots and position holders of both genders. We include ladies as well as gentlemen.

Gentlemen:

The other major issue is ARNAV’s EngineView vs. FADEC which we know is coming. On ARNAV’s site there is a lot of reference to the EngineView product used in conjunction with the SR20/22 but, strangely enough there is not too much info available on it on this forum. Any thoughts?

Thanks for your help,

Laz #143

Laz,

I’ve used SkyWatch in a different a/c and loved it. I would very much like to have it added to my SR22 once the retrofit kit is available. There will always be something superior in the future. What I’d really like is synthetic radar vision so that I didn’t have to depend on other a/c having a working transponder, but that’s not an option at this point :-).

I am happy that I got the Arnav engine monitoring. The EngineView thing is just a Windows program to display the info logged by the engine monitoring package (assuming you’ve selected the version with engine-data recording).

The Arnav documentation is poor and Arnav as a whole seems to lack attention to detail, but their product does work and their support is excellent. And highly respected firms sometime don’t do much better. Garmin has screwed up on software releases for the GPSMAP 295 and has a serious quality-control problem with the 430’s. No one is perfect and in GA there are not may choices.

Gentlemen:

I am trying to select the equipment and options for my soon to be born “baby”.
Specifically, I am trying to decide if the Skywatch is the right choice in light of the emerging new technologies or is it worthwhile to wait until the next generation product family is released with integrated PFD / MFD devices.

The other major issue is ARNAV’s EngineView vs. FADEC which we know is coming. On ARNAV’s site there is a lot of reference to the EngineView product used in conjunction with the SR20/22 but, strangely enough there is not too much info available on it on this forum. Any thoughts?

Thanks for your help,

Laz #143

Laz: I just attended the Garmin presentation focusing on the 430/530 units, which touched on other products as well. In terms of Skywatch, I am still pondering that issue. Here are some thoughts:

  1. There is a new Mode-S Transponder, the Garmin GTX 330. This unit is promised by the end of the year. Physically, it is that same size as the Garmin that Cirrus is using now, except that it is deeper. It is the same depth as the 430. The existing transponder is shallower than the 430. This unit has the following functions in addition to the existing unit: outside air temperature, density altitude calculation, and aural alititude alerter. In addition, it downlinks to ATC position, velocity, altitude and attitude. It receives ATC radar data, and, when implimented, ADS-B data which will display on the 430.

  2. As I understand, ADS-B will plot all participating traffic based on the mode S transmissions as to position and altitude, and transmit that data to the aircraft for display on the 430. It is pretty clear that it is going to be a long time before any significant portion of the traffic out there is transmitting mode S, however.

  3. If you want Skywatch, you really need to get Cirrus to install it. There was a post some while ago about a SR20 owner that tried to get approval for the Ryan TCAD system. His aircraft was in the shop for 6 months while waiting for engineering data on mounting of the antenna in the composite structure of the aircraft.

  4. I believe that the price of the GTX 330 is going to be just under $5,000. Since this is an exchange for the existing transponder, you should only pay the difference (depending on which transponder was figured in your original quote). My thought is that even though some of the data services that the GTX 330 are some time in the future, the benefit of outside air temperature, density altitude and altitude alerting would make it a good purchase. My thought is also that if the transponder picks up the outside air temperature function, the Davtron unit would be more likely be approved from removal by FAA. There is already a voltmeter on the SR22, and there surely has to be a place to put a clock elsewhere. This would leave a 2" hole for a backup AH on the top left of the panel.

  5. There is another Garmin product, the GDL 49. This is a Satellite Data Link Transceiver. It will display NEXRAD weather data, Metars, and temperature/dewpoint spreads on a subscription basis. It will display on the 430. It is due out by the end of the year. It will cost $3,495. It consists of a small box that mounts in the tailcone and an antenna that mounts on the top surface of the aircraft. This is another item that really needs to be a factory install, in view of the antenna mounting and cabeling required.

  6. I have the phone nunmber for the Garmin OEM representative, and plan to speak with him in a few days regarding both the GTX 330 and the GDL 49 as Cirrus factory options. The installation of both of these items would be much more complicated after delivery of the aircraft, particularly the GDL 49 with an additional antenna.

  7. I think in the end I will go with Skywatch. It is a large expense, but it works with all transponder equipped aircraft and has been around for a while now. It won’t see the “no radio” antiques, ultralights, or any other aircraft without a working transponder, but most everything out there has a working transponder, so you will be seeing most of the traffic. It integrates well with the 430, and has both the aural alert and the pop up window for the most severe threat level of target.

Gentlemen:

I am trying to select the equipment and options for my soon to be born “baby”.
Specifically, I am trying to decide if the Skywatch is the right choice in light of the emerging new technologies or is it worthwhile to wait until the next generation product family is released with integrated PFD / MFD devices.

The other major issue is ARNAV’s EngineView vs. FADEC which we know is coming. On ARNAV’s site there is a lot of reference to the EngineView product used in conjunction with the SR20/22 but, strangely enough there is not too much info available on it on this forum. Any thoughts?

Thanks for your help,

Laz #143

“Garmin has screwed up on software releases for the GPSMAP 295 and has a serious quality-control problem with the 430’s. No one is perfect and in GA there are not may choices.”

I just got a Garmin 295 and would like to know what problems exist with the software releases. Can you expand on your comment.

Garmin has screwed up on software releases for the GPSMAP 295 and has a serious quality-control problem with the 430’s. No one is perfect and in GA there are not may choices.

You have !

I just got my Skyforce IIIce (Bendix King) with enhanced topgraphy and i love it.

It has a much bigger and brighter screen (TFT) v 295 wich you can adjust with the power knob just like a volume knob on an audio receiver, set up horizontal or vertical, but its not a real backup GPS (no battery power and less portable)

And a big plus for me, the database AND maps are stored on a Jepp PCMCIA card, so when I fly in the US I can use a different card there and over here in Europe another.

For using the 295 basemap, you would have to buy a pair because the basemap is internal on ROM-chips either US or Europe ! I call that a permanent software failure for me.

Jaap SR20A #683

On the Garmin site, in the download section for the GPSMAP 295, they list the fixes and features associated with each software release. None have been very serious, IMHO. I’ve been using a 295 for about 9 months now and love it.

It has, however, locked up on me three times in that period. This is more of a problem than it may seem, because to unlock it I’ve had to remove it from its mount, disconnect the external power, remove the back cover, take out a battery to completely kill the power, reinstall the battery and cover, remount the GPS, then restart it. Could be a real problem if you were using it as a backup in case of an electrical failure. Fortunately, it doesn’t happen often.

Two other nits.

One is if you turn it off after a night flight with the display dimmed, when you restart it in bright daylight you can’t tell if is actually on or not because you can’t see the dimmed display. So you’ll probably hit the power button a few times to try to turn it on before you realize that it’s just the display. Now you and have to go through the display brightening process by memory, hoping the unit is actually on (after all those power button presses, you can’t be sure) and that you’re doing the steps right.

The other is that, as the unit is currently programmed, when changes are made to the active flight plan, they are also reflected in the stored flight plan.

For example:
You have a flight plan stored in the Route List called BTP-FDK, that you’ve programmed with the “normal” routing, say BTP-HGR-FDK. When you activate it, and then get different routing from ATC, say BTP-THS-FDK, you make the changes on the Active Route page. The next time you call up the BTP-FDK flight plan from the Route List it shows the changed routing instead of the “normal” route you originally programmed.

I’ve suggested to Garmin that they reprogram it so that the active flight plan is a copy of the stored plan, not the stored plan itself, so that en route changes affect only the Active Route page and the Route List flight plan. (BTW, the UPSAT GX series GPSÂ’s use this scheme.)

Joe

“Garmin has screwed up on software releases for the GPSMAP 295 and has a serious quality-control problem with the 430’s. No one is perfect and in GA there are not may choices.”

I just got a Garmin 295 and would like to know what problems exist with the software releases. Can you expand on your comment.

Left out a “not.” Here’s what I meant to say:

I’ve suggested to Garmin that they reprogram it so that the active flight plan is a copy of the stored plan, not the stored plan itself, so that en route changes affect only the Active Route page and NOT the Route List flight plan. (BTW, the UPSAT GX series GPSÂ’s use this scheme.)

I have also had the problem with the 295 locking up. It usually occurs when descending from high to low altitude, say 10,000 to 1,000. I called Garmin to find a very helpful tech guy who immediately knew the source of and the fix for the problem (You will need the unit serial number for a return authorization). I shipped the unit to Garmin and received it back about a week later with the fix and system check up.

The problem is a very small hole in a membrane that is supposed to let the pressure equalize within the unit as you ascend or descend. A short term fix is to loosen the screws in the bottom of the case, however I suggest that you talk to garmin before you do this yourself.

Have a great day.

Bob

Joe:

Those are my observations and suggestions as well. I have had mine lock up several times since I did the 2.xx upgrades (downloaded from their site). Most recent lock up - last night. I was turning the unit off after a night flight and, to address the shortcoming you mentioned, was cycling the power button to go back to full bright before shutting it off, and it just locked up (at full bright) in the brightness setting dialog, beeping its little head off! Yep - you have to go kinda nuts to remove the unit from its bracket and remove a battery.

I’ll send mine back tomorrow. But I never had any problems with the 1.xx firmware, so I’d be surprised if it really was something physical caused by altitude changes.

Gordon

On the Garmin site, in the download section for the GPSMAP 295, they list the fixes and features associated with each software release. None have been very serious, IMHO. I’ve been using a 295 for about 9 months now and love it.

It has, however, locked up on me three times in that period. This is more of a problem than it may seem, because to unlock it I’ve had to remove it from its mount, disconnect the external power, remove the back cover, take out a battery to completely kill the power, reinstall the battery and cover, remount the GPS, then restart it. Could be a real problem if you were using it as a backup in case of an electrical failure. Fortunately, it doesn’t happen often.

Two other nits.

One is if you turn it off after a night flight with the display dimmed, when you restart it in bright daylight you can’t tell if is actually on or not because you can’t see the dimmed display. So you’ll probably hit the power button a few times to try to turn it on before you realize that it’s just the display. Now you and have to go through the display brightening process by memory, hoping the unit is actually on (after all those power button presses, you can’t be sure) and that you’re doing the steps right.

The other is that, as the unit is currently programmed, when changes are made to the active flight plan, they are also reflected in the stored flight plan.

For example:
You have a flight plan stored in the Route List called BTP-FDK, that you’ve programmed with the “normal” routing, say BTP-HGR-FDK. When you activate it, and then get different routing from ATC, say BTP-THS-FDK, you make the changes on the Active Route page. The next time you call up the BTP-FDK flight plan from the Route List it shows the changed routing instead of the “normal” route you originally programmed.

I’ve suggested to Garmin that they reprogram it so that the active flight plan is a copy of the stored plan, not the stored plan itself, so that en route changes affect only the Active Route page and the Route List flight plan. (BTW, the UPSAT GX series GPSÂ’s use this scheme.)

Joe

“Garmin has screwed up on software releases for the GPSMAP 295 and has a serious quality-control problem with the 430’s. No one is perfect and in GA there are not may choices.”

I just got a Garmin 295 and would like to know what problems exist with the software releases. Can you expand on your comment.

I have the 295 but leave it pouched for ‘just in case’. Why does everyone use it…and where is the best place for the mounts…does it show MORE than the 430’s?

On the Garmin site, in the download section for the GPSMAP 295, they list the fixes and features associated with each software release. None have been very serious, IMHO. I’ve been using a 295 for about 9 months now and love it.

It has, however, locked up on me three times in that period. This is more of a problem than it may seem, because to unlock it I’ve had to remove it from its mount, disconnect the external power, remove the back cover, take out a battery to completely kill the power, reinstall the battery and cover, remount the GPS, then restart it. Could be a real problem if you were using it as a backup in case of an electrical failure. Fortunately, it doesn’t happen often.

Two other nits.

One is if you turn it off after a night flight with the display dimmed, when you restart it in bright daylight you can’t tell if is actually on or not because you can’t see the dimmed display. So you’ll probably hit the power button a few times to try to turn it on before you realize that it’s just the display. Now you and have to go through the display brightening process by memory, hoping the unit is actually on (after all those power button presses, you can’t be sure) and that you’re doing the steps right.

The other is that, as the unit is currently programmed, when changes are made to the active flight plan, they are also reflected in the stored flight plan.

For example:
You have a flight plan stored in the Route List called BTP-FDK, that you’ve programmed with the “normal” routing, say BTP-HGR-FDK. When you activate it, and then get different routing from ATC, say BTP-THS-FDK, you make the changes on the Active Route page. The next time you call up the BTP-FDK flight plan from the Route List it shows the changed routing instead of the “normal” route you originally programmed.

I’ve suggested to Garmin that they reprogram it so that the active flight plan is a copy of the stored plan, not the stored plan itself, so that en route changes affect only the Active Route page and the Route List flight plan. (BTW, the UPSAT GX series GPSÂ’s use this scheme.)

Joe

“Garmin has screwed up on software releases for the GPSMAP 295 and has a serious quality-control problem with the 430’s. No one is perfect and in GA there are not may choices.”

I just got a Garmin 295 and would like to know what problems exist with the software releases. Can you expand on your comment.

Here are the changes (latest first).

Joe


Changes Made From Versions 2.20 to 2.21:

  1. Corrected problem editing routes that included an approach to
    an airport.

Changes Made From Versions 2.10 Beta to 2.20:

  1. Added WAAS satellite support.

  2. Corrected “Altitude Buffer” field edit operation on the airspace alarms
    setup page.

  3. Display the number of maps loaded from the datacard on the “Datacard
    Information Page”.

  4. Correct course display on active / plan route page.

  5. Corrected map drawing when a large number of maps are loaded in one area
    and the map detail is set to more or most.

  6. Changed auto range threshold for altitude display when “Meters”
    is the selected units. ( From 1000mt to 10000mt ).

  7. Report usable datacard size to MapSource.


Changes Made From Versions 2.09 to 2.10:

  1. Correct problem displaying nearest cities from the basemap.

  2. Correct problem modifying a routes after the route has been uploaded.


Changes Made From Versions 2.07 to 2.09:

  1. Correct problem displaying user waypoints on map.

  2. Correct problem uploading routes.


Changes Made From Versions 2.06 to 2.07:

  1. Increased max number of supplemental maps read from datacard to 540.

  2. Improved “Aviation In” data mode.

  3. Simplified ETE/ETA calculation in aviation mode.

  4. Update magnetic variation tables based on the new IGRF 2000 model.


Changes Made From Versions 2.05 to 2.06:

  1. Correct reporting of maximum speed and improve track log recording when in

    shaded or weak signal environments.


Changes Made From Versions 2.04 to 2.05:

  1. Corrected map night mode north up arrow and vehicle icon display.

Changes Made From Versions 2.03 to 2.04:

  1. Create/Edit route from map. Show Map - Menu option on the route plan or
    active route page.

  2. Create a user waypoint by projecting the bearing and distance from a

    reference waypoint. Reference Waypoint - Menu option from any waypoint
    tab page.

  3. Aviation tab intersection page, changed field title from “BRG” to “Radial”.

    If “AUTO MAG” heading is selected, apply the magnetic variance from the
    aviation database to the displayed value for “Nearest VOR Radial”.

  4. In OBS mode and if “AUTO MAG” heading is selected, use the magnetic
    variance at the destination waypoint to generate an OBS course line to the

    waypoint.

  5. Display approaching streets and interstate highway exits.
    Show Next Street - Menu option on the map page in land mode only.

  6. Improved external power loss detection.

  7. Added “Vertical Speed” to the configurable fields list on the HSI page,
    MAP page and GPS Position page.

  8. Display lat/lon grids on map - Setup Map menu option. The addition of this
    feature will cause all map setup options to return to default settings.


Changes Made From Versions 2.02 to 2.03:

  1. Increased visibility of the CDI scale on the HSI by reducing the width of
    the pointer and airplane.

  2. ETE times less then 1 hour are displayed with the seconds smaller than the
    minutes to visually differentiate between hours:minutes (HH:MM) and
    minutes:seconds (MM:ss).

  3. While using the map pointer on the MAP page or HSI page the user can press
    the nearest key to find POI’s, EXIT’s and CITY’s nearest to map pointer.

  4. Added bearing and distance to spell-n-find list for POI’s and CITY’s.

  5. Display duplicate aviation ids on the aviation tab page.

  6. Battery change will reset the battery timer.

  7. Added “Aviation In” data mode.

  8. Corrected “TRACK” value on active route page.

  9. Corrected “VNAV PROFILE” field arrow direction on vnav tab page.


Changes Made From Versions 2.01 to 2.02:

  1. Added basemap name and copyright string to database information page.

  2. Corrected problem with “On Route Goto” selection while

    navigating a route.

  3. Corrected problem that caused a shutdown while using the
    map pointer to view some special use airspaces.

  4. Corrected initialization problem with grid position formats

  5. Corrected display format for “BRG” field on nearest ARTCC and FSS page.


Changes Made From Versions 2.00 to 2.01:

  1. Combined “Density” and “Winds” system tab pages into “E6B” system tab page.

  2. Scroll selection lists by page using the left/right cursor keys.

  3. Improved menu option select processing.

  4. Corrected “Route List” page display processing.

Thanks, Bob!

Joe

I have also had the problem with the 295 locking up. It usually occurs when descending from high to low altitude, say 10,000 to 1,000. I called Garmin to find a very helpful tech guy who immediately knew the source of and the fix for the problem (You will need the unit serial number for a return authorization). I shipped the unit to Garmin and received it back about a week later with the fix and system check up.

The problem is a very small hole in a membrane that is supposed to let the pressure equalize within the unit as you ascend or descend. A short term fix is to loosen the screws in the bottom of the case, however I suggest that you talk to garmin before you do this yourself.

Have a great day.

Bob

A few months ago Garmin told me that the lockups were due to the equalization hole being plugged.

Last week they said it was due to the WAAS version of their software getting fixated on the WAAS signal and not doing anything else. Like your experience, this only happened to me after I upgraded to the WAAS-capable version.

So I think you both are right and there are two problems with the 295. For one you have to send it in or loosen screws. For the other, you need to turn off the differential mode (WAAS), according to Garmin tech support.

That they released navagational avionics software which will often lock up the whole unit and require one to remove the batteries shows a significant hole in their quality control process.

Not confidence-inspiring.

Joe:

Those are my observations and suggestions as well. I have had mine lock up several times since I did the 2.xx upgrades (downloaded from their site). Most recent lock up - last night. I was turning the unit off after a night flight and, to address the shortcoming you mentioned, was cycling the power button to go back to full bright before shutting it off, and it just locked up (at full bright) in the brightness setting dialog, beeping its little head off! Yep - you have to go kinda nuts to remove the unit from its bracket and remove a battery.

I’ll send mine back tomorrow. But I never had any problems with the 1.xx firmware, so I’d be surprised if it really was something physical caused by altitude changes.

Gordon

On the Garmin site, in the download section for the GPSMAP 295, they list the fixes and features associated with each software release. None have been very serious, IMHO. I’ve been using a 295 for about 9 months now and love it.

It has, however, locked up on me three times in that period. This is more of a problem than it may seem, because to unlock it I’ve had to remove it from its mount, disconnect the external power, remove the back cover, take out a battery to completely kill the power, reinstall the battery and cover, remount the GPS, then restart it. Could be a real problem if you were using it as a backup in case of an electrical failure. Fortunately, it doesn’t happen often.

Two other nits.

One is if you turn it off after a night flight with the display dimmed, when you restart it in bright daylight you can’t tell if is actually on or not because you can’t see the dimmed display. So you’ll probably hit the power button a few times to try to turn it on before you realize that it’s just the display. Now you and have to go through the display brightening process by memory, hoping the unit is actually on (after all those power button presses, you can’t be sure) and that you’re doing the steps right.

The other is that, as the unit is currently programmed, when changes are made to the active flight plan, they are also reflected in the stored flight plan.

For example:
You have a flight plan stored in the Route List called BTP-FDK, that you’ve programmed with the “normal” routing, say BTP-HGR-FDK. When you activate it, and then get different routing from ATC, say BTP-THS-FDK, you make the changes on the Active Route page. The next time you call up the BTP-FDK flight plan from the Route List it shows the changed routing instead of the “normal” route you originally programmed.

I’ve suggested to Garmin that they reprogram it so that the active flight plan is a copy of the stored plan, not the stored plan itself, so that en route changes affect only the Active Route page and the Route List flight plan. (BTW, the UPSAT GX series GPSÂ’s use this scheme.)

Joe

“Garmin has screwed up on software releases for the GPSMAP 295 and has a serious quality-control problem with the 430’s. No one is perfect and in GA there are not may choices.”

I just got a Garmin 295 and would like to know what problems exist with the software releases. Can you expand on your comment.

Last week they said it was due to the WAAS version of their software getting fixated on the WAAS signal and not doing anything else. Like your experience, this only happened to me after I upgraded to the WAAS-capable version.

This makes sense. I upgraded to the WAAS SW a couple of months ago. Last month the unit locked up on me while I was straight and level. Just as others have described, the only solution was to disconnect the power cord and remove the batteries to kill power. The unit ran fine after rebooting.

Thanks for the info.

George

I have the 295 but leave it pouched for ‘just in case’. Why does everyone use it…and where is the best place for the mounts…does it show MORE than the 430’s.

I use mine because I really like the HSI display. The panel-mount GX55 in my TB20 doesn’t have that feature, or a color map with roads, lakes, etc. either (though the GX55’s moving map is in many ways superior in its simplicity: like the Xterra SUV ads: “everything you need, and nothing you don’t”).

I agree the 295 is overkill in the SR20 with the 430 and Arnav. That said, having it mounted, set up, and ready to go in an emergency makes sense too, though it adds to your workload.

I mount mine with a RAM Suction Cup Mount (http://www.vargaair.com/ram/gps/garmin.htm).

Very convenient when stuck to the left side of the TB20’s wrap-around windshield. (Picture available at http://www.socata.org/gallery/ on page 3, third from the bottom.) Not sure where would be best in a Cirrus.

Joe