We're now taking pre-orders for the new Tracker4, due to start shipping at the end of May.
The Tracker4 is the successor to the OpenTracker and Tracker2 / Tracker3 series, and it represents a near-total software rewrite and a huge increase in memory and processor power.
Like its predecessors, the T4 is an APRS tracker, digipeater, and KISS TNC, and keeps all of the Tracker3's software features. Major new features include:
- WiFi networking - supports 802.11b/g/n
- Browser-based configuration, no special configuration software required
- Telnet server for remote network access
- Internal GPS receiver
- Complete BASIC interpreter for easy scripting
- RS-485 port with Modbus RTU support for interfacing with sensors, relays, and other devices
- DTMF decoding and encoding, usable with macros and scripts
- WAV file recording and playback capability
An external magnetic mount GPS antenna and WiFi antenna are included.
Some planned features, beyond those listed above, may not be complete when trackers start shipping. Those updates will be released as they're completed, and software updates can be downloaded and installed with a single click.
The connector layout on the production tracker will differ from what's shown here. The new revision replaces the 14-pin terminal block with a 10-pin terminal block and has the extra RS-232 port on a DE9 connector.
The Tracker4 is being developed in parallel with the new ADS-SR2 repeater controller and shares much of the same software. The tracker is in fact currently usable as a simplex voice repeater and includes many of the features of the existing ADS-SR1 repeater. The repeater functions may not stay in the final release of the tracker software, or those functions may become optional add-ons, but pre-order customers will keep at least those repeater functions that are already included.
Radio cables are sold separately. We stock cables to connect the Tracker4 to many common radio types. See the Tracker to Radio Cables
category for a listing.
Cable compatibility guide
20 MB of internal flash storage is available on the device for storing GPS tracks, telemetry readings, BASIC scripts, WAV files, and the like.
The Tracker4 has a mini USB type B connector and shows up as both a serial device and mass storage device. No special drivers are required for use with OS X, Linux, and Windows 10. Windows versions prior to 10 will need an INF file installed.
The Tracker4's WiFi module can function in access point, WiFi Direct, or client mode. Client mode is typically used to connect to an existing network, while AP and Direct modes can be used to connect with PCs and mobile devices away from fixed infrastructure.
The Modbus RTU protocol has been widely used in industry for decades and is supported by thousands of devices, including everything from simple relay boards for under $10 to high-end telemetry equipment. The RS-485 bus is capable of very long cable runs and has excellent immunity to electrical noise.
Improved scripting support makes the Tracker4 extremely flexible and adaptable. The tiny scripting system in the T2/T3 series was useful for simple tasks, but tedious to use for more complicated tasks. The Tracker4 includes a BASIC interpreter based on an enhanced version of uBASIC with added string and floating point support, as well as additional commands for easy manipulation of APRS data and telemetry.
Modbus RTU and Dallas 1-Wire devices can both be accessed by the scripting system, allowing simple, easy-to-write scripts to perform a wide variety of automation and data transformation tasks.