Private Flying LAA/BMAA/BGA/BPA The sheer pleasure of flight.


Old 18th Jun 2015, 07:35
  #21 (permalink)  
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: England
Posts: 1,249
We are looking at the Sky Demon option probably with a mini ipad. Not being of the computer genseration we are concerned about buying the wrong ipad and finding it not compatible or with insufficient capacity. A basic question but if anybody could point us towards a correctly spec'd ipad so we can buy the right thing first time we would be grateful.

Thanks Chris
ericferret is offline  
Old 18th Jun 2015, 08:12
  #22 (permalink)  
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Home
Posts: 923
My aircraft Group have found the I Pad mini II 16GB without phone card, just fine for aircraft use. (SkyDemon)
If you are going to use it for home use etc you may want more capacity for photos movies etc.
We use an external GPS receiver in the windscreen and have never had any signal problems. For longer flights a USB plug in the cigarette lighter socket takes care of in flight charging, but flights of 2/3 hours ok with fully charged device.
I would not dream of flying around our local area, SE around the London control area, without it for accurate navigation and situational awareness, dispite what the CAA map and stopwatch brigade might say!
cessnapete is offline  
Old 18th Jun 2015, 08:13
  #23 (permalink)  
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: UK
Posts: 946
Assuming you don't want to use it for much else, a basic mini-ipad should be fine, but I'd go for the middle one (small middle and large is basically 16 32 or 64 gigabyte storage). The only other decision is whether you go for internal GPS or connecting to an external device via blue tooth. If you go for self contained then you can add a SIM card should wish to and use 4G, when away from Wi-Fi, for internet connection.

I have a middle size with SIM card and it's very convenient both on the ground and in the air.
Johnm is offline  
Old 18th Jun 2015, 08:59
  #24 (permalink)  
Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: Radlett
Posts: 115
We are looking at the Sky Demon option probably with a mini ipad. Not being of the computer genseration we are concerned about buying the wrong ipad and finding it not compatible or with insufficient capacity. A basic question but if anybody could point us towards a correctly spec'd ipad so we can buy the right thing first time we would be grateful.

Thanks Chris
Of course everyone advocating an iPad is forgetting there are plenty of alternatives. For example, I bought a 2nd hand Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 (with 8" screen) for about 80. (It was on eBay at 90, I offered 75, we settled at 80.)

The benefit of the Samsung is twofold:

Firstly they ALL have built in GPS so there's no messing around with external devices or SIMs. Secondly they all have micro SD slots so that you can expand the memory to your heart's content. You don't have to buy one with a bigger memory than you'll ever need "just in case".

Last edited by londonblue; 18th Jun 2015 at 12:55.
londonblue is offline  
Old 18th Jun 2015, 09:00
  #25 (permalink)  
Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: Netherlands
Posts: 162
I love skydemon, it's a great navigational aid in the cockpit. My tablet is 8.4" and is (to me) an ideal size: not too big for a small cockpit, and big enough so you can read the map.

Still, I always carry backups: my 5" phone (also with skydemon), some built in gps device, printed charts and plog from skydemon, and an old (2 years) DFS chart. That's 4 backups.... should be enough
Pirke is offline  
Old 18th Jun 2015, 11:54
  #26 (permalink)  
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: England
Posts: 1,249
Sydemon: Ipad versus Samsung

When I made enquiries about running Sydemon on a cheaper tablet, i.e. not Ipad, I was told performance is not always consistent, and deteriorates over time, and there is more crashing and lagging compared to the iPad. Any views on this?
ericferret is offline  
Old 18th Jun 2015, 12:28
  #27 (permalink)  
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: France
Posts: 935
I've never had any problems on my Samsung galaxy tablet, or my xperia phone. The paper map is accessible in flight, but I have never used it when running sky demon.
Piper.Classique is offline  
Old 18th Jun 2015, 14:57
  #28 (permalink)  
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Kent
Age: 54
Posts: 48
Couple of things to be aware with IPAD

1. if you dont have the cellular IPAD you dont get GPS (you can buy one to plug in or you can share your Iphones GPS but its a little bit of a faff): Apple - iPad*mini*2 - Technical Specifications

IPAD Standard WIFI
  • Wi‑Fi
  • Digital compass
  • iBeacon microlocation
IPAD Cellular
  • Wi‑Fi
  • Digital compass
  • Assisted GPS and GLONASS
  • Cellular
  • iBeacon microlocation
2. Beware of glare on the IPAD. The sceen is shiney and so prone to reflections even with the brightness turned up. You might want to borrow one before buying or ask someone at the club to ensure you can read it well in bright light.

3. Personally (and I'm sure others have different opinions) I found having a map/ipad and noteboard on my lap was one thing too much and opted for a Samsung phone (which has a GPS) stuck on a window mount (You can get yolk mounts and kneeboard straps but again didnt find them working that well).

Hope that helps!
Rabbs is offline  
Old 18th Jun 2015, 15:30
  #29 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: Belgium
Posts: 488
I have Skydemon on a Nexus7 with built-in GPS. It works but an external GNS2000 provides much more reliable GPS signal. The 7" tablet is ideal cockpit size.

I also have a Lenovo Yoga2 tablet in 10" size, you can get it in 8" as well; It has an outstanding battery capacity, I see 40 hours+ after a charge. It is very reliable and can be had for less than 200. Try a big online seller and look for 'refurbished items'. The internal GPS is more performant than the Nexus7 one. It has excellent front audio speakers as well.

It used to be that the Android version of Skydemon was lagging in features compared to the iOS version, but this is no longer relevant.
dirkdj is offline  
Old 18th Jun 2015, 16:26
  #30 (permalink)  
Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: The World
Posts: 1,225
@KidInk: My best guess is you will definitely be sucked into the magenta line trap, no matter what you do. Yes, SkyDemon is a nice cockpit addition, but I would advice to use it for planning only at first place and collect some hours flying after PPL without that brain extension. So, just in case you get into trouble you have a firm memory of what to do without an iPad! If you passed this, then apps like SkyDemon will be a great tool in cockpit, as long as you use it the right way.
ChickenHouse is offline  
Old 18th Jun 2015, 17:11
  #31 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: Belgium
Posts: 488
There is nothing to prevent you from using the SD for planning, and then throwing it on the back seat (while running in navigation mode) so you have a trace of what you did right and wrong while doing WW2 style navigation. I would rather have you looking for a few seconds at the magenta line, establish a good heading with proper wind correction, and then spend the rest of the time (say 95+%) looking for traffic.
SD must be seen as an additional layer of protection against airspace bust, CFIT etc, but it should not interfere with your primary duty of traffic avoidance.
dirkdj is offline  
Old 18th Jun 2015, 20:06
  #32 (permalink)  
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Down at the sharp pointy end, where all the weather is made.
Age: 70
Posts: 1,471
When I made enquiries about running Sydemon on a cheaper tablet, i.e. not Ipad, I was told performance is not always consistent, and deteriorates over time, and there is more crashing and lagging compared to the iPad. Any views on this?
Yes. Must have been an Apple salesperson. I run SD on a 2-year old Samsung Tab 3, doesn't miss a beat, no glare, bright enough in a Cessna 172, no issues so far.

TheOddOne is online now  
Old 19th Jun 2015, 07:16
  #33 (permalink)  
Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: The World
Posts: 1,225
SkyDemon is quite well programmed and there is a reason they ported it to different platforms, be it Android or iOS, because they all have a certain level of reliability today. But, there are quality differences and you can gather your relevant information from SkyDemons discussion forum. One thing you will notice is the difference in complaints for different platforms, i.e. there is a tendency that while iOS user appear to keep their operating system quite updated Androids tend to not update their tablet frequently. Many Apple questions are related to new versions of the OS, while Android questions tend to be upon incompatibilities with old system software after SD updates. But, all these discussions are now quite down in numbers compared to the large number of installations.
ChickenHouse is offline  
Old 19th Jun 2015, 16:42
  #34 (permalink)  
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Sherborne, UK
Posts: 69
Rob from SkyDemon here,

I have personally made comments about the deterioration of android devices over time (so it may be me that ericferret is remembering), specifically when the Nexus7 first came out and we were seeing some shocking variations in performance between ostensibly identical devices. This problem is much less of an issue nowadays since non-iPad tablet makers have had to step up their game in order to compete with Apple.

This, coupled with the fact that we have been relentlessly working on android stability within the app, has started to make some android set-ups quite compelling. In fact, we were astonished at the performance we were able to get out of a Tesco Hudl when we got our hands on one recently; while it isn't as smooth/stable a ride as an iPad, the low hardware cost (<100) makes it a serious consideration - plus, there's not as much remorse when upgrading to the newer model in following years...
Bobby Hart is offline  
Old 20th Jun 2015, 15:24
  #35 (permalink)  
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: London
Posts: 326
I flew over to Cambridge last week Tuesday and was carrying my "first passenger". I planned the flight manually using the CRP-5, Wind Corrected and noted it all down on a Pooleys VFR PLOG.

As a precaution I also took out a sub to SkyDemon to run on my Android Phone - only to find that you are able to "plan and print the PLOG" also and use this for your flying. The only time I needed to use SkyDemon was to confirm I was actually overhead Chedburg turning en route to Cambridge.

Having it on my lap gave me the piece of mind that should I not know where I am I can always look at the Sky Demon.

I had my half mil chart with track over the Ground with half way points and drift lines marked.. One thing I noticed when comparing both SD PLOG and my Manual PLOG was that in my Manual planning - I didn't "interpolate" the Wind at 2000ft for each leg according to Lat/Long - and used the 2000ft wind at my home airfield for the whole journey.

I found that the headings from SkyDemon/Wind was different to my "Manual Calculations".. only by +/- 1 to +/- 3 degrees. I still got to Cambridge flying my manual PLOG and then experienced "flying only GPS" for the journey back to base. Again I noticed how my much mental capacity was released to fly the plane - when doing things by GPS only.

However, I would always like to know where I am visually also - by reference to towns/rivers/railways etc.

How "accurate" is the PLOG on SD and if using such navigational tools, should one also do everything manually or just print off the PLOG from SkyDemon?

I am just thinking time wise - I could have saved myself the planning time but of course I am trying to do everything the way I was taught manually. Though the arguments by some instructors are also - we teach you to fly manually but wouldn't blame you if you were to fly via using a GPS later due to controlled airspace restrictions.

Also - can I review my route that I actually flew using SkyDemon if flying manually (some kind of trace)?

I am still getting to grips with making sure SkyDemon has the correct config for my aircraft because it seems to default to 3000ft when I was at 2100ft which I couldn't change..

Also I don't understand what the "Virtual Radar" is - better read the manual I suppose.


Scoobster is offline  
Old 20th Jun 2015, 21:00
  #36 (permalink)  
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: 23, Railway Cuttings, East Cheam
Age: 63
Posts: 3,121
I know there are those who cling to the old North up, paper chart type set-up. I just don't know why.
Different brains? I can't for the life of me follow track up, either on a map or on Skydemon, it has to be north up otherwise I may as well just switch it off. Don't know how people do it, you must be wired up differently to me. Having said that my flying buddy can't do it north up, it totally throws him. Mind you he's a bit weird.

Re carrying a paper map etc. I always carry a marked up map and paper plog. I find that marking the map up gets the route and any problem areas into my head, plus there's always the chance that the Iphone or whatever will go tits up as happened to me a few weeks ago. I was flying an Aerobat with a mate to go for a pub lunch somewhere. I had the iphone suckered to the side window. I had just taken off and at 995' precisely (I read it on the flight log later) the side window blew open and the iphone was sucked out of the a/c.

'Bugger' and other stronger expletives issued forth. Luckily I could see I was over open ground and the chances of it knobbling someone were pretty slim. So I grabbed the map and flew to where we were going and back the old fashioned way which was quite novel actually. Kind of put the dampers on the pub lunch though.

On returning to my home airfield I was talking about what happened when one of the guys asked me if I had 'find my iphone' switched on. I had, and in short order using the club computer I found the location in a field a few miles away, it was still transmitting. I took a screen shot of the sat location and printed it out, then worked out how close I could get in the car. I walked across a few fields and almost walked straight to it. There wasn't a scratch on it although the screen was blank. I had a new screen put on for 50 and it works perfectly. It had logged the flight and where you can see the virtual radar there's a vertical line where it dropped out of the a/c and max altitude, 995'!

I have since invested in a yoke mount for it. It's not going fly away again.
thing is offline  

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