Need advice on internet/telecom while cycling Australia

All about touring, whether you are a local or visiting from overseas.

Re: Need advice on internet/telecom while cycling Australia

Postby il padrone » Sat Oct 01, 2011 5:53 pm

Aushiker wrote:
il padrone wrote: We used a Telstra broadband modem and had reception for this everywhere we had mobile phone reception.


Was that an Elite modem?

Not exactly the same, as my mate had had it for a year or so, but essentially it functioned the same. A simple USB plug-in device like that one.
Riding bikes in traffic - what seems dangerous is usually safe; what seems safe is often more dangerous.
User avatar
il padrone
 
Posts: 18437
Joined: Mon Apr 07, 2008 11:57 pm
Location: Heading for home.

by BNA » Sat Oct 01, 2011 6:01 pm

BNA
 

Re: Need advice on internet/telecom while cycling Australia

Postby RonK » Sat Oct 01, 2011 6:01 pm

Dragon wrote:However if you (and this is what I had in mind) go on months-long biking trips where you also bring your passport because need to cross international border, and a major fraction of your
time, you find yourself in the middle of no where (like the mountain of mongolia, the rice villages in Asia, or the mountain village people in Vietnam) and you need to update your blog, or some other online social network, email or for some reasons you need all the data (video, pictures.. ) on your laptop. In this situation, the net book is rather limited.

I think you underestimate the capabilities of the humble netbook - mine did all that while on tour. A second battery would have extended its usefulness to around 20hours. Used with care it is surprising how little time it takes to upload and edit a few photos, write up a daily journal entry and upload it, even make a quick call home. Save the big photo and video edits and web surfing for when electricity and internet are available.

In these remote regions you speak of, if there is no electricity then it's unlikely there will be any internet anyway.

My final fallback for keeping my journal is - a pen and notebook.
Cycle touring blog and tour journals: whispering wheels...
User avatar
RonK
 
Posts: 5355
Joined: Mon Aug 24, 2009 2:08 pm
Location: Brisbane, Queensland

Re: Need advice on internet/telecom while cycling Australia

Postby Aushiker » Sat Oct 01, 2011 6:48 pm

KenGS wrote:
Aushiker wrote:
KenGS wrote:I got both. Problem solved. :)


Thanks :) Both as in?

Andrew

Sorry - senior moment :) I've got the Pedalpower+ Universal cable - not the Super-i-cable
And I've got the Garmin Extender.
I normally connect the Garmin Edge to the PP+ and use the Extender to recharge my mini-DVR. After using the Extender I recharge it using the PP+ then swap it back to the Garmin Edge.


Have you used the Extender on solar power? I am just a little worried it will not charge quick enough to keep at least the Edge 800 alive.

Andrew
"Pedal-pounding pounce" - D. Fluellen - West Australian 13/1/14
Image
User avatar
Aushiker
 
Posts: 20153
Joined: Tue Jun 05, 2007 1:55 pm
Location: Fremantle, WA

Re: Need advice on internet/telecom while cycling Australia

Postby Aushiker » Sat Oct 01, 2011 6:51 pm

RonK wrote:That's the one I have - an Elite, and an external antenna was supplied with it. Fallback is to tether my iPhone, but it's never been necessary.


Cool. Seems to work okay for you and Pete so that decision can be ticked off :)

With respect to your Asus eee PC 1005 HA do you recall the specs of yours? SSD or HD? 1 or 2 GB ram?

Andrew
"Pedal-pounding pounce" - D. Fluellen - West Australian 13/1/14
Image
User avatar
Aushiker
 
Posts: 20153
Joined: Tue Jun 05, 2007 1:55 pm
Location: Fremantle, WA

Re: Need advice on internet/telecom while cycling Australia

Postby KenGS » Sat Oct 01, 2011 7:21 pm

Aushiker wrote:Have you used the Extender on solar power? I am just a little worried it will not charge quick enough to keep at least the Edge 800 alive.

Not in any serious way - the solar panel only has 1W output max. The battery has 11Wh capacity so takes at least 11 hours to recharge off solar.
On the other hand, my Garmin 705 draws only about 0.3W.
--Ken
Helmets! Bells! Rego!
User avatar
KenGS
 
Posts: 1455
Joined: Thu Sep 10, 2009 10:31 pm
Location: Rosanna, Victoria

Re: Need advice on internet/telecom while cycling Australia

Postby Wingnut » Sat Oct 01, 2011 7:47 pm

I travelled around Oz for four months earlier this year, not by bike but in my old Rodeo ute with my surfboards etc. I left my notebook at home as I was worried about theft & I ended up using an iPhone 4 for everything (photos, email, calls, Skype, TomTom GPS etc). Obviously I could charge it via the USB in my stereo but what I discovered was I really didn't need to take the Mac along. Next time I tour on my bike I plan to hopefully get a water resistant cover for it & charge through my front dynamo hub...
"It never gets easier, you just go faster..." - Greg Lemond

"Because technology alone is a poor substitute for experience." - Richard Sachs
User avatar
Wingnut
 
Posts: 467
Joined: Sat Sep 05, 2009 11:01 pm
Location: Mornington Peninsula...

Re: Need advice on internet/telecom while cycling Australia

Postby Aushiker » Sat Oct 01, 2011 7:52 pm

KenGS wrote:
Aushiker wrote:Have you used the Extender on solar power? I am just a little worried it will not charge quick enough to keep at least the Edge 800 alive.

Not in any serious way - the solar panel only has 1W output max. The battery has 11Wh capacity so takes at least 11 hours to recharge off solar.
On the other hand, my Garmin 705 draws only about 0.3W.


Okay. I must check the specs of the Edge 800.

Andrew
"Pedal-pounding pounce" - D. Fluellen - West Australian 13/1/14
Image
User avatar
Aushiker
 
Posts: 20153
Joined: Tue Jun 05, 2007 1:55 pm
Location: Fremantle, WA

Re: Need advice on internet/telecom while cycling Australia

Postby Aushiker » Sat Oct 01, 2011 7:58 pm

Hi

Getting back to the netbook ... bit of exploring on the net and I found a couple of cheaper new units at Jb Hi-Fi which puts in context the price to pay for second hand units.

One is a eMachines EM355 (Acer) which looks good at $244 as it has a Atom N570 dual core processor. No SSD of course at this price but 250 GH HD.

The other one is a Asus EEE PC R011PX at $253 but it has an older processor type.

BTW what do you think is a reasonable second hand price, say using the EM355 as benchmark for a new unit?

Andrew
"Pedal-pounding pounce" - D. Fluellen - West Australian 13/1/14
Image
User avatar
Aushiker
 
Posts: 20153
Joined: Tue Jun 05, 2007 1:55 pm
Location: Fremantle, WA

Re: Need advice on internet/telecom while cycling Australia

Postby Baalzamon » Sat Oct 01, 2011 8:00 pm

The E-Werk charges my 705 in about 3 hours.
Masi Speciale CX 2008 - Brooks B17 special saddle, Garmin Edge 810
Image
Baalzamon
 
Posts: 4612
Joined: Mon Mar 12, 2007 1:23 pm
Location: Yangebup

Need advice on internet/telecom while cycling Australia

Postby RonK » Sat Oct 01, 2011 8:15 pm

Aushiker wrote:With respect to your Asus eee PC 1005 HA do you recall the specs of yours? SSD or HD? 1 or 2 GB ram?

It has 2gb RAM and a HDD - 120gb I think.
Cycle touring blog and tour journals: whispering wheels...
User avatar
RonK
 
Posts: 5355
Joined: Mon Aug 24, 2009 2:08 pm
Location: Brisbane, Queensland

Re: Need advice on internet/telecom while cycling Australia

Postby Baalzamon » Sat Oct 01, 2011 8:45 pm

Netbook I carried I installed a SSD.
Masi Speciale CX 2008 - Brooks B17 special saddle, Garmin Edge 810
Image
Baalzamon
 
Posts: 4612
Joined: Mon Mar 12, 2007 1:23 pm
Location: Yangebup

Re: Need advice on internet/telecom while cycling Australia

Postby RonK » Sat Oct 01, 2011 9:10 pm

Wingnut wrote:I ended up using an iPhone 4 for everything (photos, email, calls, Skype, TomTom GPS etc). Obviously I could charge it via the USB in my stereo but what I discovered was I really didn't need to take the Mac along. Next time I tour on my bike I plan to hopefully get a water resistant cover for it & charge through my front dynamo hub...

I'm also intending to use my iPhone 4 for navigation and as my cycle computer, although I will continue to carry a laptop. I suggest you consider the Biologic Reecharge. BioLogic is a Dahon brand of cycling accessories and components designed for urban mobility.

I have the Reecharge and the iPhone case. This should allow me to run the iPhone all day and listen to music while navigating. The Reecharge is supplied with a selection of adaptors for iPhone, Sony Ericsson, Samsung, Nokia (newer models), Motorola (Mini USB), and the charge-in adapter. As you would expect from a Dahon product, the quality is excellent and the design is innovative but well thought out.

The Bike Brain app is one of the sharpest looking bike computers I've seen on the App Store.

And I even bought the speaker set
Last edited by RonK on Sat Oct 01, 2011 9:23 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Cycle touring blog and tour journals: whispering wheels...
User avatar
RonK
 
Posts: 5355
Joined: Mon Aug 24, 2009 2:08 pm
Location: Brisbane, Queensland

Re: Need advice on internet/telecom while cycling Australia

Postby Wingnut » Sat Oct 01, 2011 9:20 pm

Thanks for the great advice RonK.

An iphone on my bike would be awesome, I'm still trying to get my head around spending so much on a Rohloff Speedhub first!
"It never gets easier, you just go faster..." - Greg Lemond

"Because technology alone is a poor substitute for experience." - Richard Sachs
User avatar
Wingnut
 
Posts: 467
Joined: Sat Sep 05, 2009 11:01 pm
Location: Mornington Peninsula...

Re: Need advice on internet/telecom while cycling Australia

Postby Dragon » Sun Oct 02, 2011 7:37 am

OK so from the discusion here I take it the best solution for power is to bring two or three extra batteries. Then, in this case, it will not make any difference whether you will bring laptop or
net book because I have never seen any Solar Pannel that I can trust it will charge a net book and at the same time be small enough to strap on to your bike.

I have seen manny solar products and a few of them claim to charge net book or even laptop, but don't be fooled. You can tell the claim is BS just by the size of the pannel.
For example there is no way the gorilla pannel will charge a net book. Also that product does not say anything about what voltage or wattage it produce. It did not give any
dimension of the pannel so I am extremely skeptical. If the scale in the picture is right, this pannel is not big enough. A 20W pannel has a particular size and there is no way
the Gorilla pannel is 20W. Please do some research and be careful when you pick out a solar product. Manny times it is not plug and play and you may need extra stuff that
you do not anticipate.

So I agree the best solution is to bring a few extra batteries.
Dragon
 
Posts: 13
Joined: Sat Sep 17, 2011 12:15 pm

Re: Need advice on internet/telecom while cycling Australia

Postby il padrone » Sun Oct 02, 2011 9:21 am

Dragon wrote:For example there is no way the gorilla pannel will charge a net book. Also that product does not say anything about what voltage or wattage it produce. It did not give any
dimension of the pannel so I am extremely skeptical.

From their specifications PDF:

Output capacity
500mAh (AT) 20V
500mAh (AT) 5V


So, by my minimal knowledge of electricity, it seems to be about 10W output, with a 500mA limit. Also the dimensions are there too :

• Unit dimensions: 264 x 200 x 19mm


Doesn't state whether this is open or closed, but using proportions I'd say it's when closed, so the panel size must be about 200mm x 500mm.
Riding bikes in traffic - what seems dangerous is usually safe; what seems safe is often more dangerous.
User avatar
il padrone
 
Posts: 18437
Joined: Mon Apr 07, 2008 11:57 pm
Location: Heading for home.

Re: Need advice on internet/telecom while cycling Australia

Postby il padrone » Sun Oct 02, 2011 10:20 am

Aushiker wrote:Hi

Getting back to the netbook ... bit of exploring on the net and I found a couple of cheaper new units at Jb Hi-Fi which puts in context the price to pay for second hand units.

One is a eMachines EM355 (Acer) which looks good at $244 as it has a Atom N570 dual core processor. No SSD of course at this price but 250 GH HD.

The other one is a Asus EEE PC R011PX at $253 but it has an older processor type.

BTW what do you think is a reasonable second hand price, say using the EM355 as benchmark for a new unit?

Beware, that Acer EM355 has only a 3-cell battery, so its battery life will be much shorter. Many netbooks have only a 3-cell battery, giving 4-5 hr charges. My Toshiba has a 6-cell battery to give a 9 hr charge.
Riding bikes in traffic - what seems dangerous is usually safe; what seems safe is often more dangerous.
User avatar
il padrone
 
Posts: 18437
Joined: Mon Apr 07, 2008 11:57 pm
Location: Heading for home.

Re: Need advice on internet/telecom while cycling Australia

Postby Dragon » Sun Oct 02, 2011 12:43 pm

il padrone wrote:
Dragon wrote:For example there is no way the gorilla pannel will charge a net book. Also that product does not say anything about what voltage or wattage it produce. It did not give any
dimension of the pannel so I am extremely skeptical.

From their specifications PDF:

Output capacity
500mAh (AT) 20V
500mAh (AT) 5V


So, by my minimal knowledge of electricity, it seems to be about 10W output, with a 500mA limit. Also the dimensions are there too :

• Unit dimensions: 264 x 200 x 19mm


Doesn't state whether this is open or closed, but using proportions I'd say it's when closed, so the panel size must be about 200mm x 500mm.



il pdrone,

Thanks for posting those numbers. I was looking for them. The amazon site I was using did not list any of these.
From the numbers you listed, it says that when you put this pannel out in the sun, the output voltage will vary
between 5V and 20V depending on Sun condition; And the output will be around 0.5Amps. So the output power
is somewhere from 2.5Watts to 10Watts. From these number, I will say it will definitely Not power up even a net book.

It may not even charge net book directly (even when powered off). The best that you can do with this is to charge a
12V battery with the help of a solar controller and have the battery charge the net book powered off. But it is
more efficient to have the battery charge a net book or laptop battery externaly using an external laptop battery
charger. Note: at 500mAh, the rate of charge is rather slow (16 hours). Also you will reallize that you will need to buy a 12V battery
pack, a solar controller. It's getting to be quite expensive.

There are a lot of reviewers at Amazon, complaing about this product, and rightfully so. I own several solar
arrays so I had gone through the frustration and bad experience that some other people had. Solar products
are nortoriously missleading. They do not have good instruction and they do not tell you what you need to make
it work.

The dimension of this pannel look almost like you can attach it to one side of the bike, but it's still too
big. I was thinking, if you can find a flexible, foldable solar array of similiar size and Voltage and Amps
ratting, you can buy two of those and attach them to both sides of your bike (on second thought it's too big).
By connecting them in parallel, you can charge a laptop battery externally in 8 hours. It is quite an
expensive option. If you consider any expensive solar array product make sure you take a lot of time,
reading all the reviews, sending the reviewers email asking questions, searching youtube for demo of the
product, call the seller and ask how it work; ask if you need charge controller and battery pack. But on
second thought some times these people don't know showtime. It is rather expensive and you don't want to buy it
and had to return it.

The bottom line is I would not buy this charger if I want to charge a net book.
Dragon
 
Posts: 13
Joined: Sat Sep 17, 2011 12:15 pm

Re: Need advice on internet/telecom while cycling Australia

Postby rustguard » Sun Oct 02, 2011 3:03 pm

nasigoreng wrote:the biggest con by apple was to say geeks use macs! last time I looked they were all linux...


yeah good point mac is for people who like to spend money on stuff you can get for free.
Linux rocks!

Aushiker wrote:I would do something along the lines you do, but would run Ubuntu as my OS with OpenOffice and probably just save/upload the photos for further editing on my Mac once I am home.

Decisions decisions :)

Andrew

excellent plan, though plenty of foto editing in linux probably gimp ships with ubuntu. Think ubuntu ships with libreoffice now? could be wrong.
rustguard
 
Posts: 1322
Joined: Thu Jul 10, 2008 2:31 am
Location: Perth, WA

Re: Need advice on internet/telecom while cycling Australia

Postby Aushiker » Sun Oct 02, 2011 6:14 pm

il padrone wrote:Beware, that Acer EM355 has only a 3-cell battery, so its battery life will be much shorter. Many netbooks have only a 3-cell battery, giving 4-5 hr charges. My Toshiba has a 6-cell battery to give a 9 hr charge.


Yes this seems to be a pretty common standard, so need to either factor in the cost of a 6-cell battery or find a netbook that comes with one.

Andrew
"Pedal-pounding pounce" - D. Fluellen - West Australian 13/1/14
Image
User avatar
Aushiker
 
Posts: 20153
Joined: Tue Jun 05, 2007 1:55 pm
Location: Fremantle, WA

Re: Need advice on internet/telecom while cycling Australia

Postby Aushiker » Sun Oct 02, 2011 7:26 pm

Aushiker wrote:
RonK wrote:That's the one I have - an Elite, and an external antenna was supplied with it. Fallback is to tether my iPhone, but it's never been necessary.


Cool. Seems to work okay for you and Pete so that decision can be ticked off :)


Just picked up a brand new sealed in its packet Telstra 3GB Prepaid Modem for $65.10 delivered. Can't complain about that. 33% discount :)

Andrew
"Pedal-pounding pounce" - D. Fluellen - West Australian 13/1/14
Image
User avatar
Aushiker
 
Posts: 20153
Joined: Tue Jun 05, 2007 1:55 pm
Location: Fremantle, WA

Re: Need advice on internet/telecom while cycling Australia

Postby RonK » Sun Oct 02, 2011 10:16 pm

Aushiker wrote:Just picked up a brand new sealed in its packet Telstra 3GB Prepaid Modem for $65.10 delivered. Can't complain about that. 33% discount :)

Yeah, bargain - and prepaid is good, pay only for what you use.

Here is a link to the model comparison chart for Asus eee PC. The 1005 HA is still in the model lineup, and there are a number of other models with long-life 6-cell batteries. Most models are available with GNU Linux, which should ensure you are up and running immediately with all the necessary drivers etc. According to the features page, Open Office is bundled with Linux systems. The 1000 is offered with Linux and 40 gb flash storage which may be a little limiting. Personally I'd have no reservations about getting a HDD model - I've had no hint of a problem with mine.

I carry my eee PC in a Case Logic Netbook case - it's been updated since I got mine, but the changes are superficial. I carry the power pack separately so as not to create a pressure point. The case fits nicely in the inner mesh pocket of an Ortlieb Front Roller.

I note you have been looking for second-hand machines, but new prices are low enough to be justifiable.
Cycle touring blog and tour journals: whispering wheels...
User avatar
RonK
 
Posts: 5355
Joined: Mon Aug 24, 2009 2:08 pm
Location: Brisbane, Queensland

Re: Need advice on internet/telecom while cycling Australia

Postby Aushiker » Mon Oct 03, 2011 12:03 am

Thanks for the link @ronk I am open to new units if at the right price. Some possibilities on eBay it seems.

Andrew

Sent from my Nexus S using Tapatalk
"Pedal-pounding pounce" - D. Fluellen - West Australian 13/1/14
Image
User avatar
Aushiker
 
Posts: 20153
Joined: Tue Jun 05, 2007 1:55 pm
Location: Fremantle, WA

Re: Need advice on internet/telecom while cycling Australia

Postby Aushiker » Thu Oct 13, 2011 6:10 pm

Hi

A little update ... picked up today a brand new Asus R051PX (red) which has a Intel Atom N570 dual core processor, 320 GB hard drive and a 56wh 6 cell battery (claimed 11 hours). I had the ram upgraded to 2 GB and got an extra year of warranty (send in for a replacement unit) (cost $20). The total package is $478.00 but thanks to the joys of salary packaging the cost will be $267.25 which is pretty good for the system. Purchased it from Dick Smith.

Will have to wait a month to get my "hands on it" properly as it is now become a birthday present which reduces the cost heaps more :mrgreen:

Regards
Andrew
"Pedal-pounding pounce" - D. Fluellen - West Australian 13/1/14
Image
User avatar
Aushiker
 
Posts: 20153
Joined: Tue Jun 05, 2007 1:55 pm
Location: Fremantle, WA

Re: Need advice on internet/telecom while cycling Australia

Postby RonK » Thu Oct 13, 2011 10:01 pm

Aushiker wrote:A little update ... picked up today a brand new Asus R051PX (red) which has a Intel Atom N570 dual core processor, 320 GB hard drive and a 56wh 6 cell battery (claimed 11 hours).

Good choice I think. The touchpad looks a bit wider than on my 1005 HA, which was the feature I liked the least. However you may still want to consider a tiny Belkin travel mouse.

A bonus is that the power cord is compatible with my camera battery charger so only one power cord is required, and since the eee has an SD card slot there is no need to carry a camera cable to upload photos.
Cycle touring blog and tour journals: whispering wheels...
User avatar
RonK
 
Posts: 5355
Joined: Mon Aug 24, 2009 2:08 pm
Location: Brisbane, Queensland

Re: Need advice on internet/telecom while cycling Australia

Postby Aushiker » Thu Oct 13, 2011 10:23 pm

RonK wrote:Good choice I think. The touchpad looks a bit wider than on my 1005 HA, which was the feature I liked the least. However you may still want to consider a tiny Belkin travel mouse.

Price was pretty much in line with other N570 models that I say with the exception of the Acer Aspire which was $100 cheaper (not sure about the battery but). I was not impressed with this model as it was made of plastic/plastic if you no what I mean. The Asus seems quite a decent package.

With regards to the mice, I have a little one, actually two of them, so will use one of those. Probably not as small as the Belkin but still fairly small.

Andrew
"Pedal-pounding pounce" - D. Fluellen - West Australian 13/1/14
Image
User avatar
Aushiker
 
Posts: 20153
Joined: Tue Jun 05, 2007 1:55 pm
Location: Fremantle, WA

PreviousNext

Return to Touring Australia

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users



Popular Bike Shops
Torpedo 7 Torpedo7 AU
Ground Effect Ground Effect NZ
Chain Reaction Cycles CRC UK
Wiggle Wiggle UK
Ebay Ebay AU

“Bicycles BNA Twitter
“Bicycles BNA Facebook
“Google+ BNA Google+
“Bicycles BNA Newsletter

> FREE BNA Stickers
> BNA Cycling Kit