Looking for a GPS module supplier

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Looking for a GPS module supplier

Post by LukeW » Fri Nov 18, 2011 12:26 pm

I'm looking for a supplier for a GPS module, and I'm looking for the following characteristics:

- Low cost

- No middle-man such as Sparkfun if I can help it, because that just adds cost. (But then again, I don't want to buy quantities of 1000, so in some cases having a middle-man distributor is a necessary evil)

- I don't want a GPS receiver module that comes pre-attached to somebody else's breakout board that provides an on-board 3.3V regulator and nice friendly TTL-level serial outputs and a 5V input, because I want something that is essentially designed as an OEM component for integration onto one custom-made board at minimal cost and maximum openness.

- An all-in-one module would be nice, with the antenna and chipset integrated together, although it would be OK to work with a separate GPS chipset and antenna if need be.

- A quadrifilar helix antenna would be nice, since it's more isotropic than a patch antenna.

I have found this one so far:

http://shop.4dsystems.com.au/gps-module ... -9102.html

This is cheap, is designed to be mounted onto an existing board, has an easy to use interface (basically just requires a 3.3V supply and a couple of other components and outputs either TTL-level serial or USB)

(Some of you will have seen the OpenPilot GPS modules used with the MobSenDat at LCA2011... this is the same GPS module as that one, but without the simple voltage regulator / breakout board included.)

So this one looks like a pretty good option. It does have a patch antenna, but I can live with that.

The MicroNut board designed by the Project Horus guys uses what looks like a very nice GPS module as well.

https://plus.google.com/103647462351465 ... n4LhUsNkqM

This GPS module uses an external antenna (a quadrifilar helix antenna in this case) to feed RF into the uBlox GPS receiver chipset.

I don't know where to source those uBlox GPS receiver modules and antennas from, I'm still investigating.

Does anybody have any other ideas or suggestions or comments?


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Re: Looking for a GPS module supplier

Post by jonoxer » Sun Nov 20, 2011 10:59 am

Sorry Luke, I don't have any specific pointers but I'd be interested in the outcome. I've been thinking for a while that I'd like to do either a GPS shield, or a GPS module, or incorporate GPS into more of a datalogging shield, so if we can settle on a particular model we may be able to get economies of scale by ordering the same device.

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Re: Looking for a GPS module supplier

Post by LukeW » Sun Nov 20, 2011 11:28 pm

Thanks Jon.

I want to fix up the MobSenDat design, so that'll be relevant to you guys anyway if you want to stock it at Freetronics.

But first the main thing to do is to find good GPS modules that can be sourced.

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