Search Results for: RouteBuddy

Calling Routebuddy Users

Paging anyone who uses Routebuddy on a desktop machine — Windows or Mac OSX.

I am currently producing some video tutorials on using Routebuddy and am keen to test them with some beta test volunteers.

If you would like to help, please send an email just indicating whether you are a Windows or OSX user. Emails to:

rbeta@andyhowell.info

Video Review (Vimeo) Routebuddy Scottish Highlands Coast to Coast Map

Routebuddy Scottish Highlands Coast-to-Coast Video Review from Andy. Howell on Vimeo.

Some people have had trouble viewing this video, for some reason those using Chrome. Here is a version uploaded to Vimeo — video quality not so good but it works!

Video Review: Routebuddy Scottish Highlands Coast to Coast Map

Run time 16 minutes 43 secs

Routebuddy’s new Coast to Coast Challenge Map utilises the company’s unique screen ‘stitching’ technology to reduce a new map and add-ons that will be useful to anyone planning a coast-to-coast walk across the Scottish Highlands.

On this occasion I thought it would be more useful to you if I produced a video review, as you really have to see it in action to appreciate what this system can do.  The review is in html format and should be viewable by all up-to-daye systems including tablets.

The 1:50K base map is available at a reasonable £19.99.

In addition, Routebuddy has created a number of specific 1:25 add-ons which stitch into the base map. These range in price depending on the ground covered. They start at £4.99 for part of the Torridon hills to £25 for the Cairngorms — good value for money.

Any other Routebuddy map can stitch into the base map and this review also displays a Harvey/BMC 1:40 working with the base map.

Not only can you view stitched maps on the same screen but you can print out the stitched maps on the same sheet of paper.

 

Ed: Here is a flash version which some of you might find easier to access.

The Routebuddy Scottish Coast to Coast Map — Interesting Stuff

Interesting product from Routebuddy, a computer map which focuses on the portion of the Highlands used by the TGO Challenge. This is not so newsworthy in itself but what makes this very interesting is that Routebuddy have produced three versions of the map, two of which make use of their technology which stitches together different types of map on the same screen.

The basic C2C map uses OS 1:50 scale and sells for just under £20.

To this you can then add-on portions of either OS 1:25 or Harvey 1:40 which will then be automatically stitched onto your base 1:50.

The higher resolution add-ons cover Mullardoch/Monar/Affric, Torridon, Ben Avon, the Cairngorms and the Fetteresso Forest!

Not all of the Munros are here but the majority of the big hills are included in the add-ons. Just thinking of the needs of Munro baggers I wonder if this approach can be extended with new map insets/add ons in the future?

I’ve featured Routebuddy’s ability to stitch maps together before and the best example I’ve given of the stitching effect is here.

The stitching effect also is very useful when it comes to printing as maps are printed out ‘stitched’ as they are presented to you on the screen. I you are the kind of hiker who hikes with paper printouts then this may be for you.

This might also be interesting for those of you who primarily use web-based systems and have already bought maps for use on a smartphone or tablet. This map might be all you need to plan routes on a desktop machine which can then be exported and imported into something else. I much prefer planning on a desktop than on a tablet or even in a browser window.

I’m a long standing customer of Routebuddy and have bought a lot of maps from them over the years. I’ve approached them to provide a review copy of the maps and if they come through I’ll produce some kind of video-based review.

Interesting stuff.

Web Tutorial: Installing Maps with Routebuddy and Routebuddy Atlas

I’ve had a few run ins with people recently complaining about Routebuddy. I must admit to wondering whether these were simple spoiler posts, however, taking them at face value they seem to be from people who cannot understand how to install maps.

Map installation with Route is very easy and since V.4 exchange of data and maps between the computer and an IOS device has become very simply indeed.

I have put together a web tutorial here which takes you through the map purchase, installation and showing with IOS device process.  I also look at installing maps where you don’t have access to a wifi network.

The video runs for about 11 minutes — but it only takes a couple of minutes to download and install a map!

View the Video Here

Review: Harvey Maps Mountain Maps Knoydart, Kintail and Glen Affric on Routebuddy

Harvey Mountain Map — Knoydart

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Harvey Knoydart Map Running on Routebuddy (Click map for big version)

Regular readers will know that I like maps. For me, the best hillwalking and backpacking maps for the UK are the Harvey Mountain 1:40 series that are produced in conjunction with the British Mountaineering Council.

For hill walking and Munro bagging the 1:40 scale seems about right to me. The design of these maps is stunning. These are exceptionally legible maps which is a good thing when you are out on the hills and looking to find a route in atrocious weather. I find the layout and design of those maps to be clearer and more functional than OS maps and I know I am not alone in thinking that.

When I was preparing for my recent trip to the Knoydart I popped into Cotswold Outdoors in Birmingham and I noticed there was now a map of the Knoydart in this series. I bought it and took it to it the Highlands along with the OS Explorer Map of the area.

I much preferred using the Harvey Map. Harvey is a small specialist company and a company that is owned and operated by hillwalkers. I think this makes a big difference. Not only is Harvey very clear about how to shade and design a map for optimum effectiveness but they also know how to package hillwalking areas into just the right kind of package.

The map that I bought covers not only the Knoydart but also Kintail and Glen Affric. On one map a hillwalker has access to not only the Knoydart and its Munros but also to the Five Sisters and the stunning Affric ridge. Basically, this is a very useful map to any bagger.

The only downside to my use of this map was that I couldn’t have it installed on my iPhone so I had to cross reference my position on my map with an OS map on my phone.

A couple of days ago an email from Routebuddy alerted me to their publishing of the full range of Harvey Mountain Maps for use on Apple, Windows and Apple Mobile platforms. So, I got hold of a copy of the computer version of the Knoydart Map.

It looks as good on a computer screen as it does on paper. As usual Routebuddy has rendered this map in great detail so that it can be magnified to quite a large size without any degrading in quality. It is crisp, clear and uncluttered. I much prefer this to the OS Explorer Map. Comparing the two on Routebuddy is very easy as you can simply switch a map on or off. The ever critical path detail on the high approaches to the tops and summits seems not only cleaner but more comprehensive and up to date.

While I find the OS 1:50 maps more than adequate for much walking in the Highlands IO (and others) often resort to 1:25 maps when navigating through land with a to of walls and fences as they are clearly marked here. The Harvey Maps have the advantage of a more pocketable scale than the OS 1:25 but they also show the positions of walls.

I also have both the paper and Routebuddy versions of the Harvey Snowdonia Mountain Map and this is just as impressive as the Knoydart Map.

It is worth reminding readers that there are two advantages of using maps on the Routebuddy system. The first is portability — one purchased the map can be used on Mac, Windows and IOS systems. Secondly, Routebuddy’s ability to ‘stitch’ together two different maps in the same display window offers all kinds of benefits to route planning. I have the whole of Scotland mapped at 1:50 and can simply sit specific area maps on top — I never have to worry about getting the end of map and reaching the back hole of infinity. The 1:50 map works as a kind of base map on which I can build. Below, I’ve included a screen shot of the Knoydart map stitched with the OS Explorer at or around Glen Affric.

The two maps I have in this Routebuddy series have convinced me that these maps are worth getting to use on your computer as a working companion to your paper versions. The downside I see at the moment is that (currently) Routebuddy does not run on Android mobile systems so to use these maps in the field you will have to be an iPhone user.

Inverie Map

Inverie

 

Affric Stitch

The Harvey Map stitched onto the 1:50 ‘base’ map.

Map Offers and News: Routebuddy and Viewranger

A busy day for Mapping software today.

Routebuddy are supporting National Park Week (what?) by knocking 25% off all of its National Park Maps — offer ends on Sunday 4th August. If you a Routebuddy user check your inbox — the Routebuddy email carries discount codes for both 1/25 and 1/50 maps

Viewranger is announcing an expansion of their ‘sharing’ service through MyViewranger. Viewranger seems to be duplicating many of the Social Hiking features and although I doubt that many Social Hiking users will be switching this might be attractive to more casual ‘sharers’. But you can learn more here.

Bonjour Routebuddy 4.2 & Routebuddy Atlas 2.0

Routebuddy’s upgrade trail continues this week with the release of new versions of both the desktop version of Routebuddy and the IOS Atlas application.

The big step up here — and it is a big step up — is the adoption of Apple’s Bonjour technology which makes the synchronisation of maps, routes and waypoints between computers and IOS devices an absolute breeze.

Simply put, Bonjour creates a simple network between devices using wifi cards  there is no need for the various devices to even be logged on the same wifi network. Using bonjour networking our main computer really does act as a planning hub that can easily shift data around in every direction.

On opening up the new version of Routebuddy I immediately noticed that the devices section of the information window was now listing both my IOS devices — an iPhone and an iPad.

Click on one of these devices and I am presented with a simple synch window. I can synch data in both directions, i.e. from the computer to the device or from the device to the computer. I have two synch options. The first option allows me to sync waypoints, tracks and routes. Once I have selected the direction that I want to travel I am presented with a list of all of my routes and waypoints organised in a list that exactly matches my directory structure in Routebuddy. One click on my directory of choice and the data is on its way.

The second synch option is a biggie as it involves synching maps. A scrollable window lists all of the maps that I have installed on my Routebuddy desktop hub — the list indicates which of these is already loaded onto my IOS device. A simple click to install the map soon sends any maps that need adding to the IOS device on their way. So long as the map is properly installed on your desktop machine (with the license codes installed) then you get a full and clean installation. There is no need to addd in license codes. This technology also works the other way if yo have a map installed on your IOS device but not yet on your desktop computer.

There are other enhancements to Routebuddy that I have not yet explored but the introduction of this bonjour technology is a massive step forward. Life has suddenly become much easier.

Routebuddy Launch a Very Attractive Range of UK National Trail Maps

Routebuddy, who produce computer maps for both MacOSX and Windows OS systems, have launched a useful series of UK National Trail Head maps that I am sure are going to be popular.

The maps cover 15 of the most popular National Trails including the Pennine Way, the South West Coastal Path (2 maps), the Pembrokeshire Coastal path and Hadrian’s Wall. The full list is available here.

In what I think is a new move Routebuddy are offering each map in three modes:

The CL50 version of the map follows the centre line of the trail and gives you between 1 and 2 kilometres of land on each side of the centre line at a 1:50 scale. This will probably be all you need for, say, a coastal path. The price for the CL50 is £4.99.

The TH50 map is again at 1:50 scale but gives you between 5 and 10 kilometres either side of the centre line. This will allow you to take in trail heads and to stroll off the path a while. These might be useful for the Pennine Way, Yorkshire Trails and so on. The TH50 is available at £9.99.

Finally, the TH25 offer the 5-10Km spread either side of the centre line at 1:25/ The TH25 will set you back £19.99 each.

Relative Costs

I haven’t done a scientific price comparison yet but I think these compare very well to, say, tile based purchases of these trails.

I have seen a bit of a discussion of the price of different maps and various systems recently. Direct comparisons are not that easy to make as each company varies charges significantly using their own systems — they also cut their own maps differently.

Routebuddy charges upfront for the software where others offer the program for free, Of course, nobody offers anything for free in the commercial world. When I looked at price comparisons last I found Routebuddy became cheaper the more maps you bought and overall was very cost competitive.

 

I gather there are more innovations on the way as is a significant upgrade to Routebuddy 4. Routebuddy may well charge upfront for the application but they are sticking to their policy of regular updates and developments which I think offers a real good deal for customers. 

Routebuddy National Trail Maps

Routebuddy Quietly Roll Out Harvey Maps

Routebuddy’s quiet development cycle continues with the addition of a first selection of Harvey Maps, basically including the popular UK National Parks.

Harvey Maps have been available on other platforms for a while now but running on Routebuddy they can stitch into and next to OS maps on the same screen — both shown together. This is not only exceptionally cool looking but very practical and useful.

Apparently a new major update of RB is coming soon. I’ll take a look at that when it comes and may get a chance to evaluate the Harvey Maps next week.

But first I’m off to do some walking in Cornwall!