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RuffChaser

Dogtra Pathfinder

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madduckdog

headed to the north woods saturday.... hopefully I can see that point alarm go off... enuf to see if it wares out 

 

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NC Quailhunter

I have a Pathfinder and the few times I have been out with it have been really good. the phone is with me anyway so why not use it for something. The Bluetooth connector that connects the collar to the phone goes in a pocket in my vest and I have not had any issues with the connectivity. I don't have anywhere to get the nine miles that it advertises but out to half a mile in the pine woods around here it has been good. Phone battery is not bad. I go through about half a charge in three hours. I usually get back to the truck and recharge as I go to the next cover. I am hunting in the south east so on the prairies I don't know how it will do. that is my little review, not well written but ask me about it if you like and I am a fan so far..

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JTS

Thanks for the reply. When using it are you putting your phone in air plane mode to save on the battery?

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NC Quailhunter

I haven't put it in airplane mode. I just use it as normal. Next training run this weekend I will try it to see what happens. I am not sure it will function but I will let you know.

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Locher

dumb question, but it appears from pictures I've seen, that the ecollar function is also controlled from the smart phone app.  Does the smart phone not go to sleep mode with a dark screen when this app is active?  If it does go to sleep, how do you make a timely correction?  I'm just thinking, you've been hunting for 20 minutes and haven't looked at it - you need to make a correction - do you have to put your security code into the phone before making the correction?

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NC Quailhunter

I have not had my phone go to sleep on me while using the app.

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Locher

Thanks. I know some apps keep the phone out of sleep mode. It make sense to not let it sleep. But I can’t imagine my battery lasting very long. 

 

What kind of phone do you have? 

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NC Quailhunter

I have a Kyacera. I can not remember the model but it is the ruggedized outdoor one. I picked it because it was ruggedized and waterproof. I am not worried about it getting beat up.

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madduckdog

Well I am back from the north woods. Here is the review I promised

I have also decided to return the dogtra pathfinder. Here is my report on its performance.

 

First let me say my cell phone could have  caused some of these issues but who can tell for sure I have a older phone a Samsung S5.. it has replaceable batteries… I planned on keeping it when I got a new phone as the pathfinder’s cell phone,... I own extra batteries so when power goes out I can just put in another battery.

The good

The unit is very easy to use and if you have cell coverage or know where you are going the google maps are free and have great detail satellite imagery is hard to beat.

 

The bad.

1.       I am guessing that the unit relied on my phones compass because most of the time it worked but many times it was pointing indicator was pointing to the wrong way … the north south east west seemed right but the arrow was pointing the wrong way. Asking garmin users and some say that if the compass is not calibrated the garmin sometimes does the same. So this was not the strike that made a big difference.

2.       Sometimes it took a long time for the collars to appear online I am also told this can happen with the garmin but I was in to the hunt still waiting for the unit to start reporting if I had a big running dog I would forsure wait till it was on line before sending the dog out.

3.       The app sometimes just quit working this is a BIG issue.. if you mark your truck once you restart the app the truck Is gone also the data starts all over.

4.       You can Only choose alarms for one dog. If you are hunting 2 dogs and the dog you did not choose to put the alarm on points you will never get a notice… just the dogs icon changes.

5.       I did experience some bad data.. I could see my dog only a little in front of me but the pathfinder app said it was 7.3 miles !!!!! infact it was stuck on 7.3 miles when I went to the next spot and put out another dog with a different collar his collar said 7.3 miles too. I had to turn off everything and restart it to clean out he 7.3mile issue. This only happened once… could this have been my cell phone YES but who knows.

 

In the end I was debating on keeping it,… I believe that the app and product will get better as it gets further developed. I ask my wife what I should do she said … you use that tracking collar to keep up with your dog…. If you cannot depend on it what good is it.

 

If you just could not afford the alpha the pathfinder would work 85% to 90% of the time I would hunt it with a beeper collar in point only mode so you do not depend on the compass on your phone. And you will know when another dog is pointing.

Also leaving the screen on,… my cell phone ran the batteries down fast .. but with the screen saver on battery was not a issue. So If you plan on stairing at the screen all day you will need a cell phone with great battery.

Also it does not work with leather gloves as a phone’s touch screen does not.

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NC Quailhunter

Thanks for the updates on your experience with the Pathfinder. I will keep my out for those and see if it happens to me and maybe it is something that is I the system or something that is specific to your collar and App.

 

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DonT

Thanks for the review, too bad it's not working out. 

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madduckdog

Funny thing I just sent the pathfinder back and get a notice that the app is updated. .added alarms for multiple dogs and bug fixes 

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JTS

Madduckdog thank you for your review!

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Fur and Feathers
10 hours ago, madduckdog said:

Funny thing I just sent the pathfinder back and get a notice that the app is updated. .added alarms for multiple dogs and bug fixes 

Do you believe that these bug fixes might have fixed the problems you were experiencing? Thanks for the review.

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madduckdog

no way to know for sure but "4.       You can Only choose alarms for one dog. If you are hunting 2 dogs and the dog you did not choose to put the alarm on points you will never get a notice… just the dogs icon changes."

looks it was fixed according to the press release

 

the sad part for me is what this product might become as it is developed.. but I felt I needed a track and train collar now.

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