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TOPIC: Some Information about ReefMaster 2.0

Some Information about ReefMaster 2.0 2 years 4 months ago #8001

  • Matt
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Since we are receiving quite a number of queries about what is happening with ReefMaster 2.0, here is a rough guide to what is happening and when:

What’s coming in ReefMaster 2.0?

After nearly four years of ReefMaster v1, the release of ReefMaster v2.0 will mark the beginning of a new release cycle. ReefMaster 2 will be a major update; we have taken on board a lot of feedback over the past four years, and the hope is that the new version will be somewhat easier to use, with a (slightly) more familiar “Windows” style user interface, as well as being a much more powerful and flexible map creating and editing tool. Having said that, most of the user interface will still be recognisable and, if you are already familiar with ReefMaster v1, the transition should be a smooth one.

Map Projects



Probably the biggest single change in ReefMaster 2 is the merging of Projects and User Maps; instead of separate, generated, projects and editable user maps, there is now a single map type known as a Map Project. Map Projects retain the ability to generate bathymetric maps from track logs, which now form a set of fully editable map layers (for example, a typical map would generate separate layers for isobaths, major and minor contours, land/island areas and shorelines, and possibly hardness layers of various types).

  • Each generated map layer is fully editable, including style, visibility and z-order. Individual layer components can also be edited, and layers of varying geometry types can be created or imported.
  • There is full support for copying layers between different Map Projects, and for copying components between layers.
  • As well as layer types for basic geometries (line, polygon, contour, isobaths), there are Shaded Relief and Flat Raster layers that can be included in 2D map exports, as well as layers for background images.
  • Map Projects do not have to be generated from track-logs – they can be comprised entirely of imported and/or user-edited layers.
  • All map layers (including generated layers) are persisted to the database, so there is now no need to regenerate a project every time a workspace is loaded (including for the 3D view).
  • RGB colour scheme support for AT5 maps. Most recent Lowrance/Simrad units can now support RGB colours for polygon areas, freeing you from the limitations of the AT5 palette. Any layer can target AT5 or RGB colour schemes, which also means that you aren’t limited to the AT5 palette when targeting image or Google Earth Exports.
  • Spot depths for Map Projects – a simple way to add known depths that are not part of your logged data, which are then used when generating the map.
  • Water level offsets for generated maps – create maps at different water levels quickly and easily.
  • Much improved image export, including super high resolution exports in the MBTiles and KML Super-overlay tiled formats.
  • Many more options for AT5 export, including targeting of older units with earlier Atlas versions.
  • Much improved editing of Map Boundaries and lines/polygons.

Sidescan Mosaic



Big changes here, much of which will be recognizable from the standalone Sonar Viewer application. The graphics engine for sidescan has been completely rewritten, including the following changes:

  • Sidescan images now display at all resolutions, including fully zoomed out.
  • Much better graphical performance and faster image loading.
  • New blending modes, including “closest signal” and “blend closest”, which blends the sidescan signal across multiple sidescan swaths according to signal distance. This mode allows for sidescan mosaics to be constructed incredibly quickly without any need to edit the port and starboard ranges (see the image above – joins between separate tracks are almost invisible, with the only visible lines being the joins between port/starboard swaths within a single track).
  • Noise reduction.
  • Real-time image sharpening (using the industry standard “unsharp mask” within the GPU) to improve feature definition and local contrast.
  • Fully adjustable “automatic gain correction” to balance brightness across the sidescan swath.

Sonar Viewer



The sonar viewer component within ReefMaster is upgraded to use the same graphics engine as the standalone sonar viewer, with much improved performance, noise reduction and image sharpening.

Features coming as part of the ReefMaster 2 release cycle

The following won’t be part of the initial ReefMaster 2 release, but will be coming as updates throughout 2017 as part of the ReefMaster 2 release cycle:

  • XTF file format support & automatic bottom (edge) detection in sonar log files.
  • GeoTiff support (import and export), as well as a wide range of other raster formats, and the ability to generate contour maps directly from imported raster data.
  • Use of generated or imported raster (elevation) data to provide more precise slant-range adjustment for sidescan mosaics.
  • Vegetation layers.
  • Mobile viewer for iOS and Android.
  • High resolution 3D viewer and 3D track-point display.
  • Automatic sonar file synchronisation with independently logged GPS position and heading data (e.g. RTK GPS).

Upgrade Policy

The upgrade policy for ReefMaster has always been that minor version (1.x -> 1.x+1) upgrades are free, but major version upgrades (1.x -> 2.0) are not. The cost to upgrade from ReefMaster v1 to 2.0 will be USD$50 (+ tax, where applicable). At the same time, the cost of ReefMaster PRO will rise to $199, so the cost of purchasing ReefMaster now and upgrading later will be the same as purchasing ReefMaster 2.0 when it is released.

  • ReefMaster 2.0 will install “side by side” with ReefMaster v1 and it will be possible to trial ReefMaster 2.0 before deciding whether or not to upgrade.
  • There is, of course, no obligation to upgrade and you can continue to use ReefMaster v1 indefinitely (there won’t be any “nag” screens!).

System Requirements

Many of the enhancements in ReefMaster 2.0 require direct use of a graphics processing unit (GPU). As such, the system requirements for RM2 are greater than before. The overwhelming majority of computers purchased within the last 10 years will be suitable.

  • Windows 7 (or later).
  • Hardware support for DirectX10.1 (or later).

These requirements are the same as they are for our standalone Sonar Viewer application, so if you can run that you will be able to run ReefMaster 2.0. Note that the requirement for hardware graphics support may prevent ReefMaster running on some virtual machines.


Release Date


It is fair to say that this release has taken a little longer than expected, and the current estimate is that ReefMaster 2.0 will be available by the end of this year.
Last Edit: 2 years 4 months ago by Matt.
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Some Information about ReefMaster 2.0 2 years 4 months ago #8002

  • Guido
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Nice job Matt!

We cannot wait till the end of the year.
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Some Information about ReefMaster 2.0 2 years 4 months ago #8003

  • Team Colibri
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The best is about to get better!
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Some Information about ReefMaster 2.0 2 years 4 months ago #8004

  • DiveExplorer
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Outstanding... looking forward to try it.
Humminbird 581i HD DI.
Mapping the ocean floor and search for history
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Some Information about ReefMaster 2.0 2 years 4 months ago #8005

  • DAVES
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exciting cant wait to try it
<*)))><
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Some Information about ReefMaster 2.0 2 years 4 months ago #8009

  • Avek
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DAVES wrote:
exciting cant wait to try it
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Some Information about ReefMaster 2.0 2 years 4 months ago #8010

  • Vol
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"Note that the requirement for hardware graphics support may prevent ReefMaster running on some virtual machines." - Does anybody knows at least one VM with DirectX 10.1 support ?
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Some Information about ReefMaster 2.0 2 years 4 months ago #8011

  • Matt
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Other than the host partition in HyperV (which doesn't really count, although it is technically a VM), and perhaps HyperV/RemoteFX running on a Windows server (not a likely configuration for RM users), then no. Parallels have talked about support for DX11 for some years now, and hopefully will deliver at some stage, but at the moment the only solution for Mac users would be BootCamp.

We did think long and hard about the DirectX requirement, and perhaps the ideal solution would have been some sort of "fall back" within RM to older tech. However, this "solution" would have been a lot more work, and, since so many of the improvements in v2 actually rely on direct GPU access, the "fallback" would have looked a lot like RM1 (i.e. none of the sidescan, sonar viewer or track display improvements). So the logical conclusion here is that, if you can't run RM2, you should stick with RM1.
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Some Information about ReefMaster 2.0 2 years 4 months ago #8012

  • Heiko
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What is with the function, "automatic adjustment of the depth"?

For example:
wrong depth points of a track wil lbe set on the correct depth

or

the points,which were set by the depth of the 83 kHz sonar-unit, will be reset by the downscan-data.
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Some Information about ReefMaster 2.0 2 years 4 months ago #8013

  • Matt
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Heiko wrote:
What is with the function, "automatic adjustment of the depth"?

For example:
wrong depth points of a track wil lbe set on the correct depth

or

the points,which were set by the depth of the 83 kHz sonar-unit, will be reset by the downscan-data.

If you are referring to "automatic" edge detection, then automatic is probably the wrong word - "assisted" might be a better one. The idea is that RM can make a guess as to the bottom location when the user is in "depth editing" mode, which will make the process of correcting depths on the sonar view quicker and easier. Nothing will be done automatically (i.e. without user input).
Last Edit: 2 years 4 months ago by Matt.
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Some Information about ReefMaster 2.0 2 years 4 months ago #8017

  • Walleye_Fisherman
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Matt, will there also come a mobile app with live sonar charts creating options? :-)
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Some Information about ReefMaster 2.0 2 years 4 months ago #8023

  • Matt
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Walleye_Fisherman wrote:
Matt, will there also come a mobile app with live sonar charts creating options? :-)

Not as part of this release but I agree - one day that would be very nice!
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