Avionics Report

September 2009 Issue

Solid FX ePlate Reader: Simple, Effective ... Big

Finally, Jeppesen users have an option for a sort-of lightweight plate reader. The software is well designed and easy to use. The hardware is far from ideal.

Options for digital plates abound, so long as you want government charts. Jepp users have been stuck with Jeppesenís own JeppView system, which works on heavy and often cumbersome laptop computers and some EFBs. In our view (and in the opinion of several line pilots we know), JeppView has some user interface issues that make it less than ideal. It also does more than simply display charts, which is more than some folks want. Once you have the FXview running, selecting and organizing charts is about as self-explanatory as possible. There are seven tabs across the top of the screen. Each tab can hold the charts for one airport, except the right-most tab, which is a clipboard. More on that in a moment. To load an airport, you tap a large "Find Airport" icon. You can tap in the ICAO identifier or any part of the airport name or town name. The FX10 narrows down the list as you type. The display is slow to update, but you donít have to wait after tapping each letter. Tap out the whole string at full speed and wait about two seconds, and the FX10 will catch up and show the results. Once youíve loaded an airport, you can check its name to make it a favorite. The list of favorites also appears on the search page for faster access.

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