i-gotU GT-600 USB GPS Travel & Sports Logger

Just before the Olympics started, I was given a new GPS gadget to play with, called the i-gotU GT-600 USB GPS Travel & Sports Logger. Since I was planning on doing a lot of travelling around during the games, this seemed like a perfect way to test it out.

i-gotU USB GPS Travel & Sports Logger

So what is it?
It’s basically a GPS receiver with onboard memory that tracks your current location via GPS and writes out some data to the device. You can then later download this data and do all kinds of cool things with it like plot your travels on a map, geotag any photos you took while on walkabout with the map data and export the geo data to other applications like Google Earth where you can make movies from your travels.

i-gotU USB GPS Travel & Sports Logger

Wandering around Vancouver:
GPS Tracking Day 1

Taking the Alberta Train to Whistler:
Whistler @trip

My flight to Whitehorse:
Whitehorse @trip

I even took it dog sledding with me (the purple line is the trail we took along the river):
Dog Mushing @trip

As you can see, the device is pretty tiny:
i-gotU USB GPS Travel & Sports Logger

I just had it clipped onto my backpack for most of the games. Its onboard battery ran for days without recharging all the while it was downloading my location data.

The main thing I liked about this device over my other GPS photo gadgets is that it was always on, capturing data. My Nikon GP-1 needed a few minutes to acquire its satellite lock once I powered on my camera. It also has a motion detector so it goes into standby mode when you don’t move to conserve battery power.

What I didn’t like is the software support…unfortunately it only supports Windows XP and the 32 bit version of Windows 7 at the moment. No Mac support either. I have the 64 bit version of Windows installed on my MacBook Pro but had to use XP (under VMWare) to access the device and software. The good thing is the manufacturer is updating the software pretty regularly and once you do export the gps data, you can use it on anything. I’ve been playing around with my Whitehorse trip data file in Google Earth on my Mac. I haven’t had a chance to explore other gps apps that can accept the *.GPX data files. Also, while the geotagging option for photos is nice, I shoot RAW so I would have had to convert them down to jpegs then sync them with the software before being able to upload them somewhere like Flickr – a few too many steps for my workflow but I know lots of photogs that like the idea of being able to geotag without an expensive addon like the GP-1 (or they have a non-Nikon camera).

Overall I’m pretty happy with the device. I’ll be taking it with me to Austin later this week to track my SXSW attendance too.

UPDATE: Looks like a software update now allows the device to work with 64-bit Windows 7 and an open source tool called iGotu2gpx for direct access to the *.GPX files on a Mac or Linux machine (thanks Eric in the comments!)

11 Comments

  1. Gregg says:

    Try Geosetter. I use it in Windows 7 x64 with my RoyalTek logger and RAW files. My workflow is to import photos from my memory cards using Lightroom, and should I have used my GPS I import the files into a dedicated GPS subfolder in my Downloads folder using the simple import utility that RoyalTek supplies. Basically it’s just making copies of the files from the logger to the folder I specify but I use the utility because my logger is bluetooth.

    I then fire up Geosetter and use it to tag any pictures. It is full of features, I plan a blog post soon to review it and explain my worflow in greater detail. I then switch back to Lightroom and tell it to read the metadata from the photos so it gets the updates.

    Also look at GPS Babel should you ever need to covert your GPS files into another format.

  2. John says:

    Thanks Gregg! Great info….I wish I had more time to dig into the data side of things with this device…I knew there was a ton of stuff out there so your recommendation makes it all that much faster to get to the good stuff.

  3. Tyler Ingram says:

    I’ve got myself one of those.. and it works fine under Vista 64bit.

    Btw, I heard a rumour you were supposed to be figuring out how to write your name via GeoTracking ;) Still looking to do that? lol

  4. Dave S. says:

    What are the file formats it outputs? If you can get GPX, KML, or TCX files you can plug them into the 3D visualizer tool I built last year:

    http://exnihilo.mezzoblue.com/elevation/

    (And if not, as Gregg suggests you can convert them using GPS Babel)

    Would be curious to see how your 2D maps look in 3D, I’ve only been able to test from a handful of fairly inaccurate devices so far.

  5. Gregg says:

    Dave, what sort of 3D files are you looking for? My RoyalTek is fairly highly accurate (it uses the SiRF III chip). I slapped it up against the plane window during a decent into Phoenix a couple of years ago and got the decent with a turn at the end for landing. Looks pretty neat in Google Earth.

  6. Dave S. says:

    Gregg, Elevation is a tool that converts various GPS file formats into 3D. At present the only file formats it supports are GPX, KML and TCX, but using GPSBabel you should be able to convert whatever format your RoyalTek produces into GPX (preferred file format) and plug it into Elevation.

  7. VancityAllie says:

    WOW the walking around Vancouver map is REALLY cool! It seems like it is pretty accurate.

  8. Eric says:

    Win7 64bit driver is available on their support web site now. So I can also use it on my MBP too.
    And there’s an useful tool from open source called igotu2gpx.
    It can download and export to GPX directly on Mac.

  9. Dan Karran says:

    Hi John. I’ve been doing some remote mapping around the Whistler area over the past few months as part of the OpenStreetMap project, and one thing I noticed is that most of the train line between Vancouver and Whistler isn’t yet on the map. Would you be interested in adding it to the map, or perhaps lending me the GPX file so I can add it? Cheers!

  10. Faye Oosterhoff says:

    I want to add to the comment of Eric. It is not yet possible to clear the memory on a Mac for the I-gotU GT-600. At https://launchpad.net/igotu2gpx/ the open source program can be found.

%d bloggers like this: