What makes EMLID devices better than other uBlox implementations

The marked of ZED-F9P/T based devices is getting crowded lately. There have been different NEO M8T boards before, but now there are now much more companies offering ZED-F9P boards now. Since one simply can connect them to an Android device with a mapping app its probably a good idea to think about what makes Emlid the better product.
I don’t want to make a hipe thread like the product announcement thread put a serious collection of arguments that will convince customers to choose an Emlid device. Ideas that would make it an even better product are also welcome.

Its a proven ecosystem which works flawlessly together

I have 3 Reach RTK devices which I use as base station, as rover to place gcps and on my drone to reference my images. Those 3 devices work well together and I can even use my instutes Reach M+ as a second rover when I’m working with students.

Since all the data is on the device there is no hassle with data and projects beeing spread over different mobil devices. And the data can be automatically downloaded using ftp.

Even if some users report missed pictures time mark with mostly wrong configured devices, I have never lost one single image/time mark in more than 30.000 images, eventhough I use a DIY build hot shoe cable.

The devices have a very beautiful interface and manage all configuration and data logging one would have otherwise implement on its own.

The price of my devices was very reasonable and competitive when I bought them. I did pay 587 $ for the kit including the antennas.


The actively participating staff!



What ZED-F9P/T based devices have you seen? Do you mean the hacker/maker boards like SparkFun’s GPS-RTK2 board (which is really great) or the simpleRTK2B, or that Drotec board? Or the ESPrtk project? These are far from being a “consumer product.”

I haven’t seen any “consumer grade products” yet. Sure, you could hack together a SparkFUN GPS-RTK2 board with their Bluetooth interface, and configure it to read the corrections via LeFebure and send the position data to Mobile Topographer for under $300. But good luck making a robust system that’s working well when you need it in the field. The RS2 is “turnkey” and ready for professional work. The well integrated system with long battery life, fast charging, weather resistant package, and frequent software updates are worth “gold” to people who want to use it all day long. We know the professional surveyors have been paying for Topcon, Leica, or Trimble systems.

I welcome the competition, but Emlid has a great head start. I suspect in six months, there’ll be a wide range of cheap and expensive options.

Yes, you are right, I think we should add that to the list.

  • It’s a robust system that’s working well when you need it in the field
  • It’s a “turnkey” and ready for professional work.
  • It’s a well integrated system with long battery life, fast charging, weather resistant package,
  • It gets frequent software updates

I’m always thinking from beeing interested inbuilding a mapping drone perspective. But also here I think even the complete package offered by the original Reach RTK is superior to the new boards, e.g. offered by Drotek.

But I also had several problems getting my Reach RTKs running in the field (probably mainly because my smartphone was incompatible). I also think that many updates did add functions which are already present at the big name receivers and that there are still updates which need to come to have a comparable package on the software side.
I also think (based on the entries in the forum and talking to people working with big names devices) that they don’t want and are not able to do additional calculations to get usable 3d positions from their gnss measurements. They are just happy that the receiver produces e.g. ETRS89/UTM data with DHHN2016 heights. So as longs as this is not the case I don’t see those people going for another solution.
Beside the boards with needs some integration work, I expect more turnkey solutions in the next months. Even Trimble started to offer a ridiculously cheap hardware/expensive subscription bundle with an Anker usb battery and a 3d printed holder :grin:.

I think it is a very interesting time because so many applications can now be realized with those receivers. I’m very interested what Emlid will offer for diy integration.


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