The new Varduino GPS is here

The design of the Varduino GPS has been greatly improved and brings the following new features:

  • A new display overlay in plexiglass for better protection
  • Larger buttons
  • A new RGB LED for charge status indication
  • Side reset buttons, accessible from the outside for programmer hobbyist
Pre-orders are therefore opened as the existing stocks has already been sold out!

New case

The pictures above are real photos with the background removed. One can see the new display cover, in plexiglass, offering a better display protection while keeping an amazing visibility outdoor. The buttons now have a larger diameter and new icons. The rest of the case is still 3D printed.

On the side, a new RGB LED indicates the battery charge status and two push buttons were added. One can reset the instrument in case of problem while the other can set the instrument in programming mode.

Opening of pre-orders

I received a lot of messages after my previous post, asking for when the new stock would be available. So before I could reopen the shop, the whole stock was sold out. No need to say that I am very happy with the success of the variometer! A new fabrication batch is already in fabrication and pre-orders are now open for a delivery in January/February.

You'll find in the shop the Varduino GPS as a pre-order, with a reservation price of 9 euros. Buyers will be notified as soon as the variometer is back in stock and orders will be shipped after the total price of 165euros is paid (9 + 156 euros, + shipping).

The price of the variometer therefore goes up from 149euros to 165euros to cover the new case cost and new assembly costs. I would like to remind everyone that this altimeter/variometer remains of great value at this price. In addition to its very sensitive pressure sensor, it still features a GPS chip, a 9 axis inertial measurement unit, a 16Go SD card for countless hours of recording and a Bluetooth module for pairing with your smarthone!

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Some news of the Varduinos

Updates

A firmware update is available for the Varduino GPS, version 0.34. This firmware requires to update Varduino Manager to version 0.6. This update brings the following changes:

  • Automatic shut down: The variometer automatically turns off when no activity has been recorded for 15 minutes. The timeout can be set in Varduino Manager, ainsi que la possibilité de le désactiver.
  • The frequency at which barometric data are sent via Bluetooth can now be increased to up to 10Hz. This is handy when your smartphone requires frequent updates of the vertical speed, such as for the thermal assistant in XCSoar. This parameter can also be set in Varduino Manager.
  • Glide ratio now shows 0 if the horizontal speed is less than 5km/h, in order to avoid exotic values at low speeds.
  • Display layout reorganization
  • Improvement of voice notifications

Variometers available soon

It's been a couple weeks that Varduino variometers are out of stock. I have indeed been working on a new enclosure with a better display protection, which will make it much more shock-proof. I decided to wait to be able to provide this new design to all new users before reopening the shop. I am planning to allow new orders within 2 weeks!

The problem was the same for the QT and QT+ that were delayed as well. Moreover, as they don't have a GPS chip, I took the time to add an RTC module so that they could keep track of time. That wasn't the case in the first hardware version.

Axel

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New website: epaper-vario.com

The new website, in English and French, and without ads, is almost finalized! Welcome!

For people landing here for the first time, the project aims at developing paragliding and sailplane variometers with e-paper displays, which are entirely based on Arduino-compatible components. They are therefore easily programmable for experienced programmers.

For pilots, these flight instruments are built with the best sensors and are just as (or even more) sensitive than commercial devices, with a lower price point.

In the next few months, the goal will be to improve the vario enclosure that is currently 3D printed. Although the current case is good quality and very resistant, there may remain surface imperfections that may bother some people. The 3D printing method is still useful to develop new case designs while waiting to invest in plastic injection in the future.

An ultra-light and sensitive variometer is on its way: the QT (the cutie, so cute!). I just need the confinement to end to be able to fly with it! It is based on the ESP32 that allowed me to save a lot of space on the circuit board and will therefore have Wifi in addition to Bluetooth. The idea is to provide a new development platform for coding enthusiasts, but also a light vario with an e-paper display that is still capable of sending data to smartphones via both Bluetooth and USB.

For people interested in the project history, who didn't follow the beginning of the development, the former website will remain online: https://varduino.wordpress.com.

If you are interested by Varduino variometers with e-paper displays, please don't hesitate to send a message!

Axel

Varduino QT is an ultralight variometer for paragliding with an unprecedented display visibility thanks to the e-paper technology
Varduino GPS is a variometer for paragliding with an unprecedented display visibility thanks to the e-paper technology
Personnalisez facilement le profil sonore de votre variomètre en thermique
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