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bu-353 upside down, does it matter?

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  • bu-353 upside down, does it matter?

    I bought a globalsat bu-353 and was going to mount it on the dash, but decided it would look cleaner and have a better reception if I mounted it in the corner of the top passenger windshield.

    I'm getting slow response from the gps directions. Sometimes it will refresh every four or five minutes. Could it be because I have the receiver mounted upside down? I looks like a hockey puck with one rounded side and one flat side. I mounted it with the flat side against the windshield, so I'm wondering if it matters which way you mount it.

  • #2
    As long as there isnt metal in its "view", it will be fine.

    Do you have a metallically tinted windshield? In my Honda, the windows all have metallic tint on them (4 sides and front back) so signals inside are crap. A good way to test it is to slap it out the outside of your car (its magnetic so it wont be hard or damaging) and see if reception improves.

    But the 4-5 minutes you talk about is after it is warmed up right? How many satellites are you seeing and are they at a good strength?
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    • #3
      satellites

      I tested it at my home location and I'm seeing 7 out of 10 satellites. It just seems like the response is too slow. By the time I reach the destination the gps is still trying to catch up to me.

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      • #4
        open up a program like XPort. Lock into that COM port and see the data it displays in the bottom. Do this without any of your other programs running.

        If it displays constantly changing data, the gps is working and the backlog is your system.

        What hardware are you running?
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        • #5
          Hmm... I'll have to try this with my BU-353. I've got to take a 6 hour trip back home tomorrow, so I'll see if mine exhibits the same behavior. I'm kinda with 2k1 on this one tho... maybe it's the system itself. Does it correctly update when normally sitting or stuck on the outside of the car? These have magnetic bases, I wonder if there is any type of plate or something inside of it to block magnetic interference that could also be blocking good gps reception, or if the magnet is too weak to cause problems anyway...
          Tidder

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          • #6
            I think the orientation of your BU-353 matters. The antenna is on the round side of the unit. The round side should face the sky for better reception of the satellite signals. However, since the BU-353 (w/its SiRFstarIII chipset) is quite sensitive to weak satellite signals, I doubt you will see substantial improvement of the issue you have described. Your car's metallic tint, as 2k1Toaster said, may be preventing RF signal from getting into your GPS receiver, or there may be some interference, or other problem.

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            • #7
              Thats what i was thinking too, the antenna patch is on the top side. Just got one of these too as well.

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              • #8
                I sure hope so because that is the way mine is being mounted.
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                • #9
                  hmm... so I had mine upside-down on the 6 hr trip home, I didn't experience any difference. Signal strengths dropped a tad, but not much...
                  Tidder

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                  • #10
                    Mine is mounted nearly vertical, facing back behind the car rather than upward. It works as well that way as facing up. I never tried upside down though.
                    ~Jimmy

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                    • #11
                      It's the same thing as an XM or Sirius antenna, they are meant to be mounted in one direction.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Tidder View Post
                        hmm... so I had mine upside-down on the 6 hr trip home, I didn't experience any difference. Signal strengths dropped a tad, but not much...

                        LOL, that reminds me once I was using a Bluetooth connected SiRFstarIII based GPS receiver with my PC, and I didn't even realize the unit was in my pocket while I was driving. It worked flawlessly during the whole trip .

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                        • #13
                          Upside down it's probably working like a badly beat up satellite dish. It's catching the signals bouncing off all the metal parts in the car. It's really designed to be facing up.

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                          • #14
                            OK, I know this thread is kind of old, but my Hiacom BT407 GPS is driving me crazy. I cant use it with BT because the bluetooth stack CF uses cant use GPS and Phone (or at least I dont know how too). I see alot of people have the BU-353 and it is fairly low priced and wont break the bank. Although I have a USB to Serial cable for the BT407, it doesnt work because when I come out of hibernation it will act like its not coinnected. I tried Hibernation Trigger, and that doesnt work, so I figure just replace the darn thing.

                            Do any of you have this issue with the BU-353, with it not showing up after hibernation? Is this unit 100% USB, or is it were it installs as a Serial to USB device. If not I think I will buy it then.
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                            • #15
                              I never have trouble with the BU-353

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