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  1. #1
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    Transievers- what are the latest and the greatest

    Barryvox s seems to be a crowd favorite with the tracker 3 also getting good reviews and a bit less expensive. Nicholai uses and arva so that must be good. Right? Decent price.
    Im really curious about the new ortovox zoom+. I used the old f1's for years then picked up a digital ortovox patroller years ago that i have currently based on it being digital at the time and the f1 being the top choice for yrs and yrs in its prime.
    Does anyone have any input on the ortovox zoom+? Great deals on them out there and they describe them as very intuitive with smart antenna selection. Only a couple buttons and quite compact looking. Looks like a good design but chances are im missing something


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  2. #2
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    It appears the Zoom+ is now a discontinued model. Ortovox only shows the Diract and Diract Voice on their site.

  3. #3
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  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by SKIP IN7RO View Post
    It appears the Zoom+ is now a discontinued model. Ortovox only shows the Diract and Diract Voice on their site.
    I dont really hear much on any of their beacons these days. Wonder why they discontinued it? Or just a name change? Looks and is described similar to the diract. Diract voice might be a nice addition though. Controls look like they function pretty much the same between the zoom+ and diract

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  5. #5
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    I am not familiar with all of the latest options, but some input from an avalanche rescue (refresher) course I did recently, where the 7 participants had a variety of beacons:
    -BCA trackers essentially have no useful "marking" feature for multi-burials. I wouldn't buy one.
    -My 10 year old Pieps DSP (pre-recalled version) performed nearly as well as the Barryvoxs. It picked up signals the furthest out, 70+ meters. The old Pieps didn't have quite as low of a minimum readout (0.2-0.3m) and the marking feature struggled with 3+ beacons. But overall I think it showed the technology really hasn't changed that much in the last 10 years. Just get a 3-antenna and practice with whatever you get.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by bfree View Post
    I am not familiar with all of the latest options, but some input from an avalanche rescue (refresher) course I did recently:
    -BCA trackers essentially have no useful "marking" feature for multi-burials. I wouldn't buy one.
    -My 10 year old Pieps DSP (pre-recalled version) performed nearly as well as the Barryvoxs. It picked up signals the furthest out, 70+ meters. The old Pieps didn't have quite as low of a minimum readout (0.2-0.3m) and the marking feature struggled with 3+ beacons. But overall I think it showed the technology really hasn't changed that much in the last 10 years. Just get a 3-antenna and practice with whatever you get.
    Good info. Thanks. The zoom+ smart antenna ,in the case of multiple burials, focuses on the nearest victim so that gives it a one up on the tracker. I figured the tracker would have something so thats good go know. The zoom+ apparengly doesnt have the longest reaching signal but i like the intuitive part. And like you say, as always, practice is key. Our annual training i brought my own beacon and often found most of the burials and all of them a couple years, while all the rest of the plow operators struggled w their assigned trackers. A little practice goes a long way. Still good info from the course as methods change/improve ever so dlightly every year and the guides were engaging and very informative. My current is only 2 attena so i think ill try one of these. The diract is advertised as "award winning" and the features are the sane as the zoom+

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  7. #7
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    Interesting that the Ortovox site only has the diract and the diract voice. Anyway Iíve played with them and the diract is extremely easy and intuitive to use, especially I love the big orange search/switch button.
    Well maybe I'm the faggot America
    I'm not a part of a redneck agenda

  8. #8
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    Missed that. I hadnt considered pieps/bd after their recent recall. Good review on those but no mdntion of the recall. I think ot was after the time of this article? Arva looks like a solid choice too

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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by bfree View Post
    I am not familiar with all of the latest options, but some input from an avalanche rescue (refresher) course I did recently, where the 7 participants had a variety of beacons:
    -BCA trackers essentially have no useful "marking" feature for multi-burials. I wouldn't buy one.
    -My 10 year old Pieps DSP (pre-recalled version) performed nearly as well as the Barryvoxs. It picked up signals the furthest out, 70+ meters. The old Pieps didn't have quite as low of a minimum readout (0.2-0.3m) and the marking feature struggled with 3+ beacons. But overall I think it showed the technology really hasn't changed that much in the last 10 years. Just get a 3-antenna and practice with whatever you get.
    This agrees with my experience. Everyone seems to have figured out the software for 3-antenna beacons 5-10 years ago.

    There was never anything wrong with the Pieps itself, just that overly elaborate on-off-search switch that broke. If they had stuck with the first generation switch, which was fine, they would never have had problems.

    Digital beacons are pretty solid. Even my 20 year old Barryvox still tests correctly, with no frequency drift. Though I wouldn't use it, as it's only two-antenna. It's now the buried guy for beacon drills.

  10. #10
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    I attended an avy class with Cody Townsend and he said most of the guides heís skied with around the world use Mammut


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  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by BlazersTimbers503 View Post
    I attended an avy class with Cody Townsend and he said most of the guides heís skied with around the world use Mammut


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    For the complex timed multiple burial training exercises that guides need to master for their training, certification and preparedness, the Mammut Barryvox is widely acknowledged as the superior product. Guides are buying speed and stress reduction. However most people donít train for this, so donít need this performance, and there are many simpler, cheaper alternatives that meet the average tourerís needs.

  12. #12
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    I am intrigued by the Diract voice. My first thought was gimmick. But a friend tried it out with a sar group and said those using it were noticeably faster. It kind of makes sense- allowing you to look where you are going while in search. Plus the chance you will see some detritus or sign as you move.

    I am just old enough to remember the analog beacons with the little ear piece- so am hesitant.

    Anyone played with the voice?

  13. #13
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    Just had a couple of Diract Voice beacons show up to be added to our rental fleet for guided clients. I like the feel and function. I don't love that you have to use it in the harness but that is just a personal preference. I might take it out and A/B it with my Barryvox and see what all the hype is about.

  14. #14
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    I just bought a Tracker 4. I think the electronics in my Pieps got wet and beacon became unreliable. Was having a hard time locking in on coarse search. Was picking up second signal when only had one beacon to recover. Practiced with my new Tracker, only practiced with two beacons but thought the beacon marked the located beacon adequately and sent me on my way to the next beacon. The reviews seemed to say the tracker worked fast. I have owned many beacons in the last 40 years and when I thought about it the Tracker was probably my favorite. Would of been nice to try a few out side by side to really see what works best, unfortunately did not have the opportunity.
    off your knees Louie

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by LHutz Esq View Post
    I am intrigued by the Diract voice. Anyone played with the voice?
    Not in the field, but I played a lot with it in the store. I love it, itís super intuitive and the voice thing is absolutely not a gimmick. Besides the voice is an addition to the beeps and all the other normal transceiver features.
    Well maybe I'm the faggot America
    I'm not a part of a redneck agenda

  16. #16
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    I’ve had a lot of exposure to a lot of transceivers this season. I’m still a fan of the Barryvox S and had been recommending the Barryvox (plain) to most people but I’ve come to appreciate some of the extra features of the S more.

    All transceivers test out to have about the same range for signal acquisition in the worst-case orientation and consistently Barryvox and PIEPS/BD will pick up a signal at a greater range than a Tracker in the ideal antenna orientation. I put more importance on the worst-case orientation which makes this less important. I have only seen a few Ortovox beacons in the field this year and I think they were older 3+ models. I have seen a few Arvas but still haven’t really put one through the paces. I have seen a few quirks from all of the transceivers when searching but that doesn’t change my favorite.

  17. #17
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    Saw a seasoned patroller wearing an f1 yesterday. Was really surprised.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by bodywhomper View Post
    Saw a seasoned patroller wearing an f1 yesterday. Was really surprised.
    That's either hubris or laziness. I started with an F1 Focus and would never grab it over anything with 3 antennas.

    My thought on the Ortovox Diract Voice is that it would be good for people who don't practice in the same way that an AED with verbal instructions is good for people that don't practice using AEDs regularly. I think if the tech is reliable and consitent then it would be a good thing for casual users.

  19. #19
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    I have a BCA tracker two and was doing an avy course last week where the guide said they would retire the beacon because of the frequency drift. There also seemed to be general questions on the reliability of something once it was more than 8 years old but to me it seemed solid if not less-featured and with shorter range than newer beacons. Based on this info I think Ill upgrade to a barryvox soon.

    I was going to get the Arva Evo5 and liked how small it was but for a couple hundred dollars more getting the additional range from the barryvox seemed worth it if Im going to have the beacon for another 5-10 years.

    Also hard not to justify a few hundred dollars price difference when I own multiple pairs of boots and skis...


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  20. #20
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    I went barryvox element after retiring the F1, my reasoning being it was a stripped down version of the higher end beacon and seemed to be working well at the time, I havent looked into beacons lately but I would probably go barryvox again
    Lee Lau - xxx-er is the laziest Asian canuck I know

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jason4 View Post
    That's either hubris or laziness. I started with an F1 Focus and would never grab it over anything with 3 antennas.

    My thought on the Ortovox Diract Voice is that it would be good for people who don't practice in the same way that an AED with verbal instructions is good for people that don't practice using AEDs regularly. I think if the tech is reliable and consitent then it would be a good thing for casual users.
    My friendís test was with a SAR team that practices constantly.

    Itís a test of one for sure- but still.

    I see the main benefit to being able to move faster because your head is up and scanning. Not focused on a fairly small (did I mention being old as Fuk?) screen with glare etc issues.

    I know Iíve augured in face first more than once in my life while focused on my beacon and trying to move fast through shit snow!

    I agree though reliability and consistency will be the key.

  22. #22
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    My old f1 had easily noticeable signal migration issues in 2010. Is was retired at that time, but became useless for practice. Ortovox used to repair analog beacons. We used to send f1 and f2ís from a rental fleet for repairs back in the late 90ís.

    My hope is that the patroller (didnít work snow safety that day) was using a backup cuz they forgot their own, was working a zone w/o avi exposure, and would be delegated to not searching if called to an incident. ButÖ.

  23. #23
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    skiing with a buddy who had done a SAR recovery the week before said he couldn't find the body with his F1, he said it was just not apparent cuz body landed upside down against a small tree

    " but one thing is apparent i need a new beacon" as he held up a rattling F1

    i think i got a new beacon right after that
    Lee Lau - xxx-er is the laziest Asian canuck I know

  24. #24
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    Anyone in the market for a Barryvox or Barryvox S needs to look at this thread.

    https://www.tetongravity.com/forums/...ox-204-shipped

    As others can confirm, it's a screaming deal. Received mine last week.
    Montani Semper Liberi

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by ktoor View Post
    I have a BCA tracker two and was doing an avy course last week
    I got rid of mine when I was doing Beacon search practice. I tossed it up the hill and my wife couldnít find it, and the reason why is because the battery rattled loosely against the contact. So it turned itself off just by tossing it onto an uphill slope.
    Well maybe I'm the faggot America
    I'm not a part of a redneck agenda

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