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Discussion in 'Avionics and Upgrades' started by Challenged, Mar 17, 2018.
Just a comment after visiting an avionics shop on Thursday, still good Aspen sales. Some frustration with Garmin autopilot STC limitations.
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I uploaded them as well now.
Synthetic vision and weather would be nice on the display. Wonder if the display is large enough to do it justice? Looks like that is an advantage for the Aspen product over Garmin’s G5 if you have an Avidyne 540?
I don't get it. What exactly is the change from their regular VFR PFD?
Looks like their VFR PFD dumbed down by removing software features/options to lower the price to match dual G5s.
No TSO. Contrary to Nate’s point it looks like they added a feature or two to their VFR model and deleted the TSO then priced to compete with the G5. The upgrade path to the full featured TSOd version is an interesting option well beyond the G5.
No rumor of the Aspen working with the new Garmin 500 autopilot yet. Rumor that they will certify with the 600.
They rebranded it...yawn!
looks like they have ADC but for HSI u got to upgrade to the Pro version. don't need to retain the backup AI is an interesting one.
Nice to see Aspen responding. Can only be good for us aviation consumers. I'd hate to see Garmin end up with a completely clear runway ahead of them.
The G5 installs I'm seeing being done by the two Garmin shops on my field are mostly going into training fleet legacy 172s with no autopilots. I doubt I'll ever be persuaded to replace the Century IIIc in my Aztec, so that's limiting some options.
I get the impression Garmin is going to limit access to the 500. Short body Baron and 36 series Bonanza owners have already been pushed into the much more expensive GFC 600.
The issue here is that, the way I understand it, the GFC500 doesn't have its own "brain" - It's completely driven by software on the G5. Thus, there will never be anything that isn't from Garmin that is capable of driving the GFC500. As of right now, even Garmin's own glass panels (G500/G600 and TXi) can't drive the GFC500, nor have they announced any plans to enable that. (I sure hope they do.)
I could while away the hours, conferrin' with the flowers
Consultin' with the rain.
And my head I'd be scratchin' while
my thoughts were busy hatchin'
If I only had a brain.
I'd unravel every riddle for any individ'le,
In trouble or in pain.
With the thoughts I'd be thinkin'
I could be another Lincoln
If I only had a brain.
Oh, I could tell you why The ocean's near the shore.
I could think of things I never thunk before.
And then I'd sit, and think some more.
I would not be just a nuffin' my head all full of stuffin'
My heart all full of pain.
I would dance and be merry, life would be a ding-a-derry,
If I only had a brain.
Looks like nothing new here people... except Aspen is explaining product options with better marketing collateral.
Aspen Pro $10,000 w/HSI
Aspen VFR $5,000 w/CDI
2 Garmin G5's $5,200 w/HSI
They charge 50% more then 2 Garmin G5's for the Pro unit. The base E5 VFR unit is about the same price as 2 G5's BUT only has a CDI and not an HSI like Garmin.
I like Aspen's package, pricing is high tho. I never considered installing an Aspen because they are simply out of my price range and there was no way I would buy the VFR only version they cough up more mega bucks for the Pro. Nor would I be willing to pay a dealer to install one for me.
This "new" product is kinda interesting if it comes with the adapter to hook up virtually any legacy analog radio, such as the KX155/165 KN53, TKMs etc.
Like it or not the Aspen is a lot more versitile and plays well with others. Garmin doesn't. Aspen has a huge AML STC with approvals for so many different aircraft and many other countries, its impressive to me. I don't think Aspen ever intended to market toward the lower hanging fruit, like Cessna 150/172/Cherokees etc that really wanted to dump the mechanical gyros.
I've got two G5s on the bench for dad's airplane and I'd like to get at least the HSI for mine.
I agree... However, with the current offerings they're not a real appealing fruit anywhere on the tree. The tree has grown and sprouted new branches. They used to be an upper end retrofit glass panel option. Garmin and the surging Dynon have taken a big chunk of that upper end market away. IMHO Aspen needs to either start catering (pricing) to the lower hanging fruit or innovate.
IMHO Aspen and Avidyne should consolidate.
Avidyne should have followed through with thier autopilot servos and had an entire autopilot appoved.
It will be interesting to see what happens
It's not super-clear yet since it's not on their web site and the data sheet and brochure are somewhat limited, but based on the pictures from both:
Things the "VFR" has that the E5 may or may not have (not shown in any of the E5 pictures available in the brochure/datasheet):
* True airspeed
* V-speeds on the airspeed tape
* Altitude trend vector
* VSI indication
* Winds Aloft
* Turn Rate indicator
Things the E5 has that the "VFR" does not:
* CDI/VDI indications for nav/ILS
Things the E5 may or may not have that the VFR does not:
* DH annunciation
* Minimums field and alert
The E5 is a different product than the "VFR" and says it'll be "Under $5K" for what that's worth.
Yeah, Aspen has been a good option for a long time, but Garmin/Dynon are about to eat their lunch on the high end, and this is their play to get some of those lower-end sales that Garmin is eating up with the G5.
For me, unfortunately, the G5 is worthless unless one of two things happens: Either the GFC500 gets certified for the Mooney, or the G5 gains the ability to provide an attitude feed for the KFC 150. If both of those were the case already, we'd have done dual G5s on our recent upgrade. As it is, our AI is limping along and the KFC150 is working for now but we don't want to put any more money into it (could have already bought a GFC500 for what we have put into it! )
So, what the Aspen E5 provides is an alternative to dual G5, but with the ability to not only drive my autopilot, but provide GPSS as well. The lack of an HSI is annoying since we currently have a (mechanical) King HSI, but if the AI were to kick the bucket today our options would be fairly limited and this represents the best-priced option we would have right now.
The other thing it does is make Aspen relevant again. The Pro PFD is cheaper than Garmin/Dynon, but it also lacks an MFD and the display is much smaller. It seemed Aspen was hanging on by a thread by just offering massively discounted equipment, but it wasn't low enough to consider until now.
The question I have now is whether or not this option will allow to be coupled to my Altimatic IIIc autopilot. With the VFR option from Aspen, they would not STC it with an autopilot with Altitude hold...or so I was told by them. Has this changed? The brochure says compatible with "most" legacy autopilots. Sounds like they are aiming that at the G5. I still am preferring the Dual G5 option, even though I would have to keep my vacuum AI. Interested to see whether or not there will be any deals at Sun N Fun this year on them.
For me... less than $5000 means $4995. The functional difference between the VFR version and E5 version appears negligible. Unless Aspen ships the Pro version for $5200, they are not competitive with a pair of G5's.
Also read the threads around the web of pilots who lost nearly all Aspen functionality when airspeed data became compromised. Their stuff is showing it's age and the pricing is no longer competitive. I hope they succeed as a company, but they act like a company whistling past the grave yard.
The brochure mentions it interfaces with the TruTrak Vizion autopilot. Any idea how tight this integration is? Can you do the altitude pre-select from the Aspen E5? Does this give "Heading" capability to the Vizion autopilot? If so, this could be a very nice solution to compete with the Garmin G5 & 500 autopilot.
Wow, good question. The Achilles heal of the TruTrak and Trio is lack of heading track capability.
Per the product announcement at today’s AEA event, the Aspen E5 will enable Heading track with the TruTrak autopilot.
is it the E5 or the upgraded version?
from avweb: https://www.avweb.com/avwebflash/news/AEA-Aspen-Introduces-Low-Cost-EFI-230507-1.html
Aspen says the new instrument can be upgraded to a version that integrates with TruTrak’s emerging Vizion autopilot for an all-in price of under $10,000.
It's still clear as mud for me; however, based on their product comparison, it DOES look like the standard E5 (with ACU) will drive legacy autopilots now. They don't tell you what those autopilots are, but I would assume that it would be the same the Evo was driving before. I think it will drive the Altimatic IIIc/Century III, so I may have to look at this as an upgrade path.
yah looks that way, the ACU is another 1 AMU.
I like the ADC that comes with Aspen and I wish Garmin G5 included one in G5, but from what it looks like
Aspen E5 + ACU (for GPSS ) = $5,995 and doesn't have HSI
might still be a good option if you want to follow the upgrade path
ACUs used to be $600. Maybe they bumped the price with the E5.
E5 vs G5 comparison from Aspen website.
Nice, without the ACU there is no GPSS, how convenient not to put that in. May be Garmin will put it in. Strangely enough they don’t mention the ADC that I think is a big plus point for Aspen. And others like it can be primary replacement for AI even if it interfaces with a large number of legacy AP.
And how is localizer and GS under the not column in G5??
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There is not a "NOT" column, they are "FEATURE" columns. The NO in the top of the G5 column just refers to the fact it is not upgradeable. It is saying the G5 does have Localizer and GS.
Doesn’t make much sense, seems like they themselves didn’t find something to write and filled it with crap, where in reality, there are differences
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The horizontal and vertical dot per inch are nearly the same. Funny how they say Aspen is "High" resolution. It just slightly has a slightly larger screen area since there is no horizontal mid-screen bezel. What a reach.
Also the AutoPilot for the Garmin is fully enclosed within the G5, and the GFC500 A/P is just a control unit.
I was surprised and turned-off by the arrogance of Aspen people at the Sun N Fun booth last year. Just mention "G5" and they get very defensive.
Forgot to add... Aspen E5 Simple heading indicator, G5 a full HSI.
I imagine between the G5 and the Dynon offerings, Aspen is losing a good bit of market share. As old as the Aspen units are I would think they should have recovered their R&D to the point they could make some deep price cuts to stay competative. If they could or would sell the Evolution Pro with the synthetic vision for $6000, I bet they would regain a huge portion of the market share and probably make more profit due to the quantity of units sold. The main difference between most of the Aspen offerings is software. Right now, the only thing I see keeping them competative is their ability to work with the TruTrak auto pilots. I heard that TruTrak has a 100 unit order backlog and only able to deliver 30 units per month. Aspen working with the TT may keep it hanging on a bit longer.
Well, all this talk seems to me that each brand lover is extremely loyal. That being said, I'm getting 2 g5 and the GFC500. My navomatic 300 isn't worth a crap. No way could I ever trust it with anything driving it. PERIOD. But, to each his own. When I get it done in may , I'll keep those that want to know updated.
I have a Pro PFD and love it, but I don't think I could justify that cost with some of the newer products now available on the market. Aspen has some very interesting upgrade paths (SV, AOA etc), but they are expensive and I'm not sure I want to buy in even further at this point.
Their upgrade-based pricing approach doesn't seem to be changing given the avweb article above mentions that a $5k product can be upgrade to integrated with a $5k autopilot for another $5k!
If this is a rebranding of the current product then great, hopefully it simplifies their marketing message which has been complicated in the past. If this is their next evolution product, it's rather underwhelming.
I spoke to Aspen at Oshkosh and was told that the ACU is only needed to connect to analogue equipment, ie: KX155 and old Legacy Auto Pilots. The newer all digital Auto Pilots (Tru-Trak, Trio) and Nav/Com's (Trig TX57, Garmin GNC 255) will not need the ACU. So the newer digital auto pilots will connect to the E5 and have GPSS. I spent the week at KOSH looking them over and when they offered it at $4100 I purchased the E5 along with a GPS175. I did not the get the ACU because my old Narco MK12D's will be replaced in the future and I will go with the Trig or Garmin Nav/Com and a Tru-Trak (BK) auto pilot. So I will apply that 1K towards the future radio's. In the time-being I will connect the E5 and GPS175, Keep the old Narco MK12D's and the old OBS GS/Loc in the panel.