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Reviewed - Qstarz Nano BT Q1300 with MTK v2 -165dBm
Posté le 26 septembre 2008 à 00:41:48 par gpspassion.

MTK v2 chipset - Up to 200,000 points - USB2.0 - Bluetooth+USB
Sensitivity : Tracking -165dBm/Acquisition -148dBm

Product page on the Qstarz site : >> LINK <<

INTRODUCTION - Ever since the SiRFstarIII chipset set the bar for high sensitivity GPS receivers in early 2005, the competition had only been able to equal its -159dBM sensitivity, but the new MTK vII (MTK 3329) chipset is rated at -165dBm. While 6dBm may not seem a lot, it actually computes to an x4 boost in sensitivity! Hard to imagine what that translates to in the field, but we should soon find out since it powers the new Qstarz Nano GPS receivers.

The Nano BT-Q890 is a standard Bluetooth GPS receiver while the BT-Q1300 adds a 200,000 point datalogger. Ultra sensitive and ultra compact with their 38x62x7mm and 21 grams with a battery life that remains decent at 12 hours in spite of the size constraints. The BT-Q1300 made it to the "GpsPasSion Labs", so read on to see how it performed.

FIELD TESTING : Over several weeks I performed many comparisons in various environments, driving, pedestrian in town, suburban train, to get a good feel for its performance as it has been somewhat variable. The good news is that TTFF (Time to First Fix) is on par with receivers with a larger antenna, likely thanks to the new MTK v2 chipset rated at -148dBm for acquisition vs the usual -143/-145dBm. The "less good news", wouldn't really call it "bad", is that as expected the accuracy is somewhat lower than on the Qstarz 1000P and even more so compared to the SiRFstarIII Globalsat BT-335 when used on foot in dense urban areas. More details below in 2. GPS Performance Compared. If you have questions or comments you can use this topic of the "GPS Dataloggers and Geocoding" forums.


Overall the Q1300 is an excellent device, here are its pros ans cons :
+ Very small and light
+ Good GPS acquisition, on par with models with a larger antenna, thanks to the increased acquisition sensitivity of the MTKv2 at -148dBm vs the usual -143/-145dBm
+ Good battery life : 11 hours in logging mode, 9 hours in Bluetooth mode. Particularly impressive given the tiny 320mAh battery
+ Very fast data transfers, USB2.0 ?
+ Dual Bluetooth and USB connection for use with PDAs and PCs
+ Wake-Up on Bluetooth for extended battery life
+ Compatible with BT747 utility (excellent Google Maps export)

- slightly less accurate than receivers with a larger antenna, more noticeable in difficult environments (dense urban areas on foot, coated windshield)
- keyring strap is not removable, which makes it reliable, but also a bit inconvenient if you don't need it

Conclusion : highly recommended, if you need a tiny bluetooth/USB receiver and a datalogger to have with you at all times the Q1300 has little competition on the market.

Qstarz Q1000P/MTKv1 - Globalsat BT335/SiRF3

Here goes, compared the Q1300 with the Q1000P and the Globalsat BT-335 with SiRFstarIII...and even the iPhone 3G, unfortunately the lack of decent logging software doesn't give it much of a chance to compete at this point. During these tests the receivers were placed side by side in my outside backpack pocket, I checked that there was no measurable interference from either unit (some Holux receivers tend to "jam" nearby receivers).

1. Pedestrian use in dense urban area, downtown Paris on the Champs-Elysees : the BT-335 clearly comes out on top, both the Q1000P and Q1300 fall prey to multipath as can be seen in the second picture, moving to the wrong side of the avenue : (in red the actual path travelled)

2. Travelling on the RER (suburban train) to check the reacquisition after a tunnel. The Q1000P is the first one to reacquire, a few seconds before the BT-335 and Q1300, the larger antenna is certainly a factor her compared to the Q1300. The BT-335 has always been a bit slow to lock and reacquire in spite of its large antenna :

3. Accuracy when acquiring (travelling from right to left) : same train trip a bit earlier, starting from a warm start I was surprised to see the Q1300 lock at the same time as the Q1000P but it takes longer to get an accurate position, probably because it had been able to download ephemeris data for fewer satellites due to its smaller antenna.

4. Pedestrian use in a suburban area with low buildings. Had the iPhone 3G out, but the pathtracker software records data very irregularly so it's hard to say whether the inaccurate track is due to issues with the GPS module of the iPhone 3G or the recording. Even though the environment isn't very difficult, neither of the receivers did particularly well, on average the BT-335 was still the better performer with the Q1300 again showing some multipath problems with some placement on the wrong side of the street :

Pictures by forum member techgps : "This shows my iTrekZ1 compared to the Qstarz Q1300:

If you have questions or comments you can use this topic of the "GPS Dataloggers and Geocoding" forums.

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