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Author Topic: Stand alone GPS tracker/tagger for photos  (Read 23824 times)
Tom Frerichs
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« Reply #20 on: June 15, 2012, 04:12:48 PM »
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It generates standard nmea log files,

I am pretty sure that Lightroom 4 only reads *.gpx files, but there are a number of freely available...and free...routines to convert nmea logs to gpx logs.  Not a biggie, but one more step to take into account.

Tom Frerichs
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solardarkroom.com
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« Reply #21 on: June 15, 2012, 04:52:46 PM »
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I've been using a Garmin Etrex Legend for a few years now and it's been perfect in all terrain. I bought a little strap that attaches it to my backpack; turn it on at the trailhead, mark my car's position (in case I get lost!) and forget about it. Later I just connect via USB, download the tracklog, import to Lightroom 4 and the rest takes seconds. The only other thing I do is sync my camera clock to the Mac with EOS Utility before each trip to keep the log coordinates accurate -- My Canon 5DmkII loses about 4 seconds/wk. The Garmin cost about $125.
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fike
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« Reply #22 on: June 16, 2012, 09:26:49 AM »
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We are making this much harder than it needs to be. 

ANY TRACKING GPS will work.  Almost all will output .gpx files.  Yes, you can convert between formats.

The tricky part of geotagging is getting your gpx file onto the computer and then having a utility to synchronize the tracklog times with the timestamps in the exif data.  Nikon has an accessory that does this in-camera.  Most other SLRs don't have a similar acccessory.  I think Canon just announced one but neither the canon nor the nikon one is reasonably priced.  LR4 or 5 will geotag.  Breeze systems Downloader Pro will also.  Nice thing about downloader pro is that if you forget to sync times between GPS and camera, you can set a time zone offset or a seconds offset.  Very useful when traveling.  Finally, Robogeo is a nice utility for tagging images after you are done processing them. 

Another note: RAW files cannot be tagged by third party utilities (LR, downloader, robogeo, etc...)  These get tagged in an xmp sidecar file.  Jpegs on the other hand can have geotagging info added to exif without problems or lossy recompression. 

Get a gps and start messing aronud. 
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Fike, Trailpixie, or Marc Shaffer
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I carry an M43 ILC, a couple of good lenses, and a tripod.
johnha
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« Reply #23 on: June 17, 2012, 09:56:38 PM »
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I've been using gps4cam on iPhone (also available for android) with great success:

http://thejohnha.blogspot.com/2012/05/gps4cam-iphone-and-android-app.html
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jljonathan
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« Reply #24 on: June 18, 2012, 12:25:43 PM »
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Are you using a Mac? This seems to be somewhat of a problem as to getting the files onto the computer with many of these units. Also, if shooting RAW,  you are saying that a sidecar file must be generated in LR, and just how does one get the data into the sidecar file?
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nemophoto
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« Reply #25 on: June 19, 2012, 08:59:20 PM »
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iPhone and Geotag Photo Pro for me.

Ditto for me.
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snoleoprd
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« Reply #26 on: June 21, 2012, 11:09:21 AM »
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Lightroom 4 will read the GPX file that all the GPS unit generate and apply the data to the sidecar files, you will see them show in Lightoom. It will also show the track on a map on the map screen and indicate where your photos were taken. Just synch you camera to the current accurate time and the software will figure it out from there. Before Lightroom 4 I used to use Breezebrowser or a free utility called GeoTag.

Alan
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Alan Smallbone
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« Reply #27 on: June 22, 2012, 01:10:29 PM »
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How do you get the gpx file into lightroom on a Mac? As I mentioned, some were saying the getting the data onto a Mac was their biggest problem.
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fike
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« Reply #28 on: June 22, 2012, 01:23:36 PM »
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How do you get the gpx file into lightroom on a Mac? As I mentioned, some were saying the getting the data onto a Mac was their biggest problem.

I am not a mac person, so I can't comment directly, but most of the GPSs have a USB mode that mounts them as a FAT32 drive. Some have internal micro SD cards that could be removed and read in a card reader.   I think Mac can handle those scenarios.  I think where the confusion comes is if you want to setup your device's software to interface it's GPS signal through a serial port to do active map tracking on the computer.  THIS isn't supported by Mac.

Furthermore, if you use a GPS with an iPhone or Android device, you can email or dropbox the GPX file to you machine. 
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Fike, Trailpixie, or Marc Shaffer
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johnha
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« Reply #29 on: June 22, 2012, 01:37:30 PM »
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I haven't tried importing a gpx file directly into Lightroom, but the gps4cam solution embeds the gps data into the raw files directly, which I like. Cleaner than having a bunch of sidecar files for this.
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fike
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« Reply #30 on: June 22, 2012, 02:01:58 PM »
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I haven't tried importing a gpx file directly into Lightroom, but the gps4cam solution embeds the gps data into the raw files directly, which I like. Cleaner than having a bunch of sidecar files for this.

Are you sure about this? I didn't think that was possible given the proprietary nature of raw formats.  I was under the impression that all metadata that was part of an adobe product (LR, Bridge, etc...) (aside from shot data recorded by the camera) was in either the LR catalog or in XMP sidecar files. 

JPG, on the other hand, has a standards-based metadata field that can be written by any app.
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Fike, Trailpixie, or Marc Shaffer
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johnha
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« Reply #31 on: June 22, 2012, 02:59:24 PM »
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Are you sure about this? I didn't think that was possible given the proprietary nature of raw formats.  I was under the impression that all metadata that was part of an adobe product (LR, Bridge, etc...) (aside from shot data recorded by the camera) was in either the LR catalog or in XMP sidecar files. 

JPG, on the other hand, has a standards-based metadata field that can be written by any app.

I'm pretty sure. The software has two components, a mobile app and a desktop app. The mobile app creates a QR code that you photograph with your camera. Then the desktop app processes all of the raw files. I import these raw files into Lightroom and the gps data is there. I could be missing something, but it appears that it changes the raw files directly.
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john beardsworth
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« Reply #32 on: June 23, 2012, 03:49:41 AM »
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Are you sure about this? I didn't think that was possible given the proprietary nature of raw formats. 
It's perfectly possible. Adobe (and others) just don't think it's a good idea.
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jaapb
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« Reply #33 on: June 24, 2012, 02:11:56 AM »
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Hi,

I myself use an i-blue 747 pro S with a MTK II chipset (more or less identical to the Qstarz bt-Q1000). It has no Mac support.
To use this device with my mac I use BT747, a java crossplatform program.
The problem with these devices on mac is, if I understand correctly, the interfacing of the chipset. A serial interface is expected, which has to be emulated over usb or bluetooth.
You have to download a special driver to do this.

The program is very feature-rich but you need to delve into some intricacies of GPS positioning, AGPS, precision, frequency etc. Very interesting to learn though.
BT747 can address more features than the manufacturer claims the device has. Also like gpsbabel, it outputs many file types like .gpx needed for Lr.
Even altitude shows up in Lr (I thought GPS coordinates in Lr were only horizontal, but I could be wrong). In the Netherlands we have many places with negative altitude (below sea level), but have to test it as my lowest recorded value yet is 5 metres.

Jaap

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Rhossydd
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« Reply #34 on: June 24, 2012, 04:41:10 AM »
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Another vote for the 747 from here.
If you can get software that will generate gpx files from it for your Mac, it's a great logger. Fast to lock on, very accurate, small and cheap too.

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Peter S
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« Reply #35 on: July 10, 2012, 02:14:46 PM »
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How do you get the gpx file into lightroom on a Mac? As I mentioned, some were saying the getting the data onto a Mac was their biggest problem.

I can get the gpx file from a very old Garmin etrex vista into my Mac but cannot get LR to read the file.  It throws up an "error loading track log" message.  These track logs work perfectly with the Anquet mapping on the Mac so I do not understand why LR will not read them.

My Garmin has a serial output so I need a converter.
This is how I go about the process:
Record a tracklog on the Garmin.
Use a Triplite (Keyspan) USA-19HS adaptor which enables me to connect the serial port to the Mac with a USB connection to the Mac.
Use GPSBabel to translate the Garmin output into a GPX file.  See attached screen shot.   It can be downloaded free from http://www.gpsbabel.org/  donations are appreciated.

So I get a GPX file on the Mac but the snag is LR refuses to read it.  You may have better luck.

Can anyone explain why these GPX files may not work?



Peter

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bobtowery
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« Reply #36 on: July 10, 2012, 06:43:48 PM »
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[Note, what I have done doesn't appear to help the OP as a mac user, but I'm throwing it out for others....]

When LR4 arrived with the Map module I was very stoked about adding this capability. I currently have three bodies and none of them natively support GPS.

I ended up selecting this one:

http://www.amazon.com/i-gotU-USB-Travel-Sports-Logger/dp/B0035VESMC/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1341963235&sr=8-3&keywords=i-got+gps

Mainly because it is so small (1.25x1.25x.5 in), and also because it only uses battery when you are moving. The battery has lasted me 4 days at one point.

I use the software that comes with it to create a GPX file which then loads easily into LR. It's magic! Just love this mapping capability.

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francois
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« Reply #37 on: July 11, 2012, 06:05:50 AM »
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I can get the gpx file from a very old Garmin etrex vista into my Mac but cannot get LR to read the file.  It throws up an "error loading track log" message.  These track logs work perfectly with the Anquet mapping on the Mac so I do not understand why LR will not read them.

My Garmin has a serial output so I need a converter.
This is how I go about the process:
Record a tracklog on the Garmin.
Use a Triplite (Keyspan) USA-19HS adaptor which enables me to connect the serial port to the Mac with a USB connection to the Mac.
Use GPSBabel to translate the Garmin output into a GPX file.  See attached screen shot.   It can be downloaded free from http://www.gpsbabel.org/  donations are appreciated.

So I get a GPX file on the Mac but the snag is LR refuses to read it.  You may have better luck.

Can anyone explain why these GPX files may not work?



Peter



You could try to open a .gpx file that works fine with Lightroom and the one that won't load with a text editor (TextEdit, TextWrangler or any other) and see what's different.
I've attached a screen copy of a working .gpx file.
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Francois
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« Reply #38 on: July 11, 2012, 07:50:08 AM »
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Take a look here.You can upload your gpx (XML) to see if it passes a validity check.

Furthermore there is gpx 1.0 and 1.1. I am not sure if Lr supports gpx 1.1, it does support 1.0 so make sure your file is written in gpx 1.0 if your software allows you to choose. AFAIK 1.1 is not necessarily better.
Hope this helps.

Jaap
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Peter S
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« Reply #39 on: July 11, 2012, 02:51:55 PM »
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Hi,

as I carry a iPhone with me all the time, I installed a great app called GeoTagg photo pro / www.tappytaps.com.

This app allows me to very simply synchronise the date and time wit the camera. After the recording of the location, it will create a gpx-file which can simply be installed ionto Lr for tagging all images. I used it for several tours now and can it it works great and without any flaws.

Robert

This works for me too.  I downloaded it last night and tested it on a walk today.
It is worth looking at the user guide  http://www.geotagphotos.net/docs/geotagphotos-userguide-2011-01.pdf
I used iTunes to transfer the gpx file to my Mac as is described on page12 (I think!) under GPX Export of Trips.
Loaded this into LR and it worked perfectly.
Good solution for Mac users.

Take a look here.You can upload your gpx (XML) to see if it passes a validity check.

Furthermore there is gpx 1.0 and 1.1. I am not sure if Lr supports gpx 1.1, it does support 1.0 so make sure your file is written in gpx 1.0 if your software allows you to choose. AFAIK 1.1 is not necessarily better.
Hope this helps.

Jaap

I looked at my file from the Babel translation using the Garmin and it is indeed in the 1.1 format.  I will see if I can find a way of changing this to 1.0.
The Geotag PhotoPro file is 1.0.
Geotag allows the user to select the frequency at which new points are plotted and I found at 5 minute intervals my iPhone battery drain was quite low.  Far lower than it is using my previous Tracklogs with Anquet mapping.

Peter
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