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Thread: Lap Timers - Current hotness

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    Lap Timers - Current hotness

    Hey guys I'm chasing a lap timer with a lap delta function to help improve my racing. I was looking at the AIM SOLO2, looks like a good kit. Has anyone used it? Or something similar they recommend? Cheers.

    https://www.aimsportsystems.com.au/e...2dl/index.html

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    If you want to improve your lap times, you want something that can do graphical overlay comparisons with your best lap (or someone elses' best lap in your car) with your current lap, this will very quickly help you identify where you need to improve. Vbox does this well, but is pretty expensive. If that AIM SOLO2 can do it for cheaper, it would be a good thing.

    For a cheap solution, check out post 8 this thread:

    http://www.performanceforums.com/for...ta-acquisition

  3. #3
    Registered User dave1600's Avatar
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    I also use racechrono on an old Android phone, export data to laptop running circuit tools to analyse. If you want to get fancy (and more accurate - 10GHz), grab a standalone GPS unit like a QStarz for a hundred bucks or so and pair it to your phone.

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    What's the budget and what car is it going in?
    Solo2 is supposed to be very good, the DL would be even better if you can hook it into the ECU of your car.

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    Registered User StanM3's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ed40 View Post
    Hey guys I'm chasing a lap timer with a lap delta function to help improve my racing. I was looking at the AIM SOLO2, looks like a good kit. Has anyone used it? Or something similar they recommend? Cheers.

    https://www.aimsportsystems.com.au/e...2dl/index.html
    That looks pretty good. Pity they don’t incorporate a camera into the unit.

  6. #6
    Registered User gmx's Avatar
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    The good thing about AIM is you can plug into OBD2 and get CANBUS data. Each car will be different and some are still a WIP or depend on the community supplying info (like hex addresses to tap).
    Awesome for looking at things like throttle trace, brake pressure, steering angle sensor. Fuck knows what else, modern cars with TPMS, I'd expect tyre pressures too. Awesome data. The one good thing about the electronic era of cars.

    All the phone/tablet timers will depend on GPS quality. You need an external GPS or it's known to be off by 2-3 tenths, sometimes half a second. Then you need to supply it adequate power. Charging/lugging my phone hooked up to an external battery charger gets annoying.

    There was a Motec output plugin from an old simracing game, F1c99-02. IIRC you could use it with rfactor too. I remember these came with Motec i2 standard. Many hours spent looking at what I had nfi about except trade-off with setup changes. I liked it but it was 10 years ago and not sure if those games were licensed etc

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    Registered User womblesti's Avatar
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    I’ve got an AIM mychron5 which is the kart version of the dash you posted. The auto track identification works really well and is usually within 0.02 seconds of the offical timing. The analysing software is useful too.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nugs View Post
    What's the budget and what car is it going in?
    Solo2 is supposed to be very good, the DL would be even better if you can hook it into the ECU of your car.
    Hey mate was looking around $550 which is what it costs to get a solo2 to my door through deamon-tweeks. Its just for a Saloon car so no ob2 connection. Someone told me you are racing F1000's now? Ill have to come and see you next race.

    I have been using racechrono but rather something I can bolt to the car and easy to press buttons with your gloves. I really like how the solo2 has the green LED's which light up if you are ahead of personal best.

    Sounds like the AIM is a good brand cheers for all the responses everyone.

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    Quote Originally Posted by StanM3 View Post
    That looks pretty good. Pity they don’t incorporate a camera into the unit.
    You can add in a camera.
    https://www.aimsportsystems.com.au/e...2.1/index.html
    Does the overlays in real time.

    I was looking into this subject last week and I want the VBOX Video HD2, but can't justify the price.

    I'm currently using one of these
    https://apextrackcoach.com/
    and taking video using a Garmin Virb.

    But kind of wish I had saved and gone for an AIM Solo + Smarty Cam or Vbox Video.

  10. #10
    Registered User trdee's Avatar
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    prob out of your budget but if you need new gauges then you could maybe go to a race technology dash2pro which is a full race dash and does lap timing as well as live time slip, so you can see if you've gone better or worse through a corner/sector in real time etc. i have the non pro in my adub atm (no time slip) but am about to swap to a pro
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    I’ll have a VBox Sport for sale very shortly with external antenna. Very accurate. Used a handful of times. Let me know if any interest

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    Registered User Reedy's Avatar
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    Harry’s lap timer + a 10hz skypro gps unit gets a recommendation from me.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Reedy View Post
    Harry’s lap timer + a 10hz skypro gps unit gets a recommendation from me.
    Racechrono + Qstarz 10 hz for me..

    Checked out the prices on a Smartycam- $1300 bucks! WTF!

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    Registered User jabtronic's Avatar
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    Race Capture Pro is something that may be worth looking into if you want something more than just a lap timer, they can be used as a race dash and can log data as well as laptimes.

    I run one in my Radical as a delta/predicted lap timer I have a smartphone velcroed to dash for the display. I've set mine up to operate similar to a Vbox, it's logging all my car data and driver inputs (coming from my AIM dash) and also controls my Gopro for video footage. I have a method I use to sync the data to the video in RaceRender afterwards.. time consuming compared to Vbox but the setup was 1/3 of the price.

    I think I paid around $900 delivered from the states. Smartycam and Vbox are much simpler to operate and more user friendly but also much more expensive. There was a bit of setup involved pulling CANbus data etc from my AIM ecu.

  15. #15
    Bannered takai's Avatar
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    The Autosport Labs RaceCapture/Track Mk2 seems to be getting quite a good review for this type of thing. Cheaper than the Vbox as well.
    Chris
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    Registered User blue_s15's Avatar
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    Been looking at the same stuff. Used the GoPro, Racechrono Pro and ext Garmin GPS & OBD dongle for years but it's a pain in the arse sometimes. Not being linked and synched shits me, forgotten to start video etc some times.

    The Solo2 DL looks awesome but combined with smartycam, fuck it's an escalation in dollars. How much is my laziness and convenience worth... The struggle is real.

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    Registered User jabtronic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by takai View Post
    The Autosport Labs RaceCapture/Track Mk2 seems to be getting quite a good review for this type of thing. Cheaper than the Vbox as well.
    I'll admit my run with my MK3 Pro hasn't been flawless I had a few issues starting out (mostly because I am trying to use it as a direct Vbox replacement which is isn't exactly intended for) but eventually I sorted it out and it works well. The app interface is a bit clunky IMO but you don't really touch it while driving so no issue, I'm hoping it will get better in a later update.They have an active community on Facebook and their forums with plenty of support and constant updates from feedback etc. I'm waiting patiently for a promised update which will provide the ability to log data directly into VBOX file format so it can be used with VBOX's Circuit Tools data analysis software as used by most pro teams. At the moment I use Racerender and TrackAttack to read the csv data logs.
    I'd also recommend the MK3 over the MK2 because of the physical inputs/outputs there's much more flexibilty eg can switch relays to control thermo fans, make shift lights etc using code/scipting within the software. I've seen a lot of people online caught out when they wanted to use their MK2 to do something that can only be done with the MK3.

    Quote Originally Posted by blue_s15 View Post
    Been looking at the same stuff. Used the GoPro, Racechrono Pro and ext Garmin GPS & OBD dongle for years but it's a pain in the arse sometimes. Not being linked and synched shits me, forgotten to start video etc some times.

    The Solo2 DL looks awesome but combined with smartycam, fuck it's an escalation in dollars. How much is my laziness and convenience worth... The struggle is real.
    Exactly, biggest issue starting out was just not having stuff work properly, Gopro not recording because it was turned on too late and didn't initialise a wifi connection with the app, Race Capture Pro not storing the logs because I had the wrong format microSD card inserted or even card was not inserted all the way properly. All small things that need to be checked and known about and when you're at the track you often havn't got time for that stuff.

    The VBOX and Smarty cam are awesome in that you simply run laps, pull into pits plug into a laptop and you've got video with data overlay straight away without having to render and sync videos with data which can take half an hour or more.
    You definitely pay for that convenience, $2000 for standard VBOX Lite with 580p and 480p low video resolution cameras or $4000 for the HD2 with 1080p cameras, and then add another $700 for the display.

    Probably a little more that the OP has in mind for simple lap timing duties.

  18. #18
    Bannered takai's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jabtronic View Post
    I'll admit my run with my MK3 Pro hasn't been flawless I had a few issues starting out (mostly because I am trying to use it as a direct Vbox replacement which is isn't exactly intended for) but eventually I sorted it out and it works well. The app interface is a bit clunky IMO but you don't really touch it while driving so no issue, I'm hoping it will get better in a later update.They have an active community on Facebook and their forums with plenty of support and constant updates from feedback etc. I'm waiting patiently for a promised update which will provide the ability to log data directly into VBOX file format so it can be used with VBOX's Circuit Tools data analysis software as used by most pro teams. At the moment I use Racerender and TrackAttack to read the csv data logs.
    I'd also recommend the MK3 over the MK2 because of the physical inputs/outputs there's much more flexibilty eg can switch relays to control thermo fans, make shift lights etc using code/scipting within the software. I've seen a lot of people online caught out when they wanted to use their MK2 to do something that can only be done with the MK3.
    Interesting, because it makes out that all of the LUA scripting can be done on the Mk2, albeit without the switched outputs. Given ill be using an aftermarket ECU i can use the switched outputs from that for those with no issue.
    Was planning on using the Shift X3 for a shift light, which on paper works with the Track Mk2 as well.

    What sort of things have you seen not be able to be done with the Track?
    Chris
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    Quote Originally Posted by jabtronic View Post
    Exactly, biggest issue starting out was just not having stuff work properly, Gopro not recording because it was turned on too late and didn't initialise a wifi connection with the app, Race Capture Pro not storing the logs because I had the wrong format microSD card inserted or even card was not inserted all the way properly. All small things that need to be checked and known about and when you're at the track you often havn't got time for that stuff.

    The VBOX and Smarty cam are awesome in that you simply run laps, pull into pits plug into a laptop and you've got video with data overlay straight away without having to render and sync videos with data which can take half an hour or more.
    You definitely pay for that convenience, $2000 for standard VBOX Lite with 580p and 480p low video resolution cameras or $4000 for the HD2 with 1080p cameras, and then add another $700 for the display.

    Probably a little more that the OP has in mind for simple lap timing duties.
    Exactly this. You can Race Chrono into Circuit Tools, manually sync videos.. It's a hassle. For basic heads up lap display/timing Race Chrono with a 10hz GPS receiver works well.

    For serious analysis, Vbox works brilliantly. Drive out of the dummy grid, turn it on, (just provide 12v power, plug into the cigarette lighter if you like!) drive, then take the card out when you are done and plug into pc. The predictive timing is brilliant, a fabulous driver training tool. And then the ability to plug in lots of inputs and confuse yourself with bulk data..

    But yeah. $...

    Circuit Tools is especially brilliant if you have a friend in the same car. Grab their data, overlay laps, look at the time deltas, display both sets of in car footage synced.

  20. #20
    ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ burn is weird's Avatar
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    I've got the racecapturre track MK2, definitely does LUA and 50hz gps as well as gyro and accelerometers.

    I've written LUA that writes all the Gps data to canbus so it gets read and logged by my ecu, but you could do it the other way and log all your ecu data with the racecapture unit if your ecu isn't friendly with gps data.

    Can also start and stop logs with speed and automatically talks to go pro cameras to start and stop recording in sync with the logs.

    Very happy so far with mine.

    The unit also does predictive lap timing but I haven't had a chance to see how good the prediction is, but is a useful visual aid if you have a smartphone on the dash, but using the fancy new shift light would let you use colour bars for lap delta so you didn't have to take your eyes off the road (and you don't want a phone flying around the cabin on a track)

    App is very basic for actually analysing logs and has nothing on something like circuit tools or the GEMS/aem logging analysis packages.

    But for 400aud a 50hz gps + 6dof IMU canbus unit was a bargain and the other features are a bonus.
    Last edited by burn is weird; 27-04-19 at 09:37 PM.

    Oo___oO


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    Bannered takai's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by burn is weird View Post
    I've got the racecapturre track MK2, definitely does LUA and 50hz gps as well as gyro and accelerometers.

    I've written LUA that writes all the Gps data to canbus so it gets read and logged by my ecu, but you could do it the other way and log all your ecu data with the racecapture unit if your ecu isn't friendly with gps data.

    Can also start and stop logs with speed and automatically talks to go pro cameras to start and stop recording in sync with the logs.

    Very happy so far with mine.

    The unit also does predictive lap timing but I haven't had a chance to see how good the prediction is, but is a useful visual aid if you have a smartphone on the dash, but using the fancy new shift light would let you use colour bars for lap delta so you didn't have to take your eyes off the road (and you don't want a phone flying around the cabin on a track)

    App is very basic for actually analysing logs and has nothing on something like circuit tools or the GEMS/aem logging analysis packages.

    But for 400aud a 50hz gps + 6dof IMU canbus unit was a bargain and the other features are a bonus.
    Nice food to hear more on the Track Mk2. 2 questions on it.
    1. Does it require an internet connection to log via the phone? Ie what happens when/if the phone reception sucks.
    2. I presume it only logs to the phone, does that get stored as a discrete file or only as data stored in the app until export?

  22. #22
    Registered User jabtronic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by takai View Post
    What sort of things have you seen not be able to be done with the Track?
    Logging additional sensors is the main thing, if you don't have an aftermarket ECU there isn't any easy way to add extra sensors to log. With the MK3 you can wire about 12 extra sensors directly to the unit (vs 0 on the Track), and switching outputs is something else that I use. For example I use the output to blink an LED on my dash several seconds after it starts the Gopro so that I can easily sync video footage later, the LED trigger is a channel in my log file and I sync to the LED visible in the footage.
    In your case it wouldn't be an issue but for those without aftermarket ecu's there's only limited data they can log via OBD2.

    Quote Originally Posted by takai View Post
    Nice food to hear more on the Track Mk2. 2 questions on it.
    1. Does it require an internet connection to log via the phone? Ie what happens when/if the phone reception sucks.
    2. I presume it only logs to the phone, does that get stored as a discrete file or only as data stored in the app until export?
    Phone is connected to the app by either bluetooth or wireless, no sim card required. Data is saved to phone app on MK2, or you have the option to run headless and save directly to micro SD card on the MK3. I think the MK2 can't be used headless without a the app at all. burn can confirm? Also I think the data is stored in the app until you export to a folder and it's basically a csv file.

    If your phone/tablet dash has a sim card you can do live telemetry streaming to Autosportlabs Podium website. I've started playing around with that and will be giving it a trial at QR this weekend I want to try pit to car alert messages someone from my pit crew can send a messsage and it will pop up on my app/dash while driving.

  23. #23
    ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ burn is weird's Avatar
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    Track version has no on board memory, phone app does all the lifting. The pro and apex can log to local memory and you can pull it with the app or sd card directly later. Because they don't rely on realtime Bluetooth or wifi the logging rates are an order of magnitude higher. (up to 1000hz instead of 50/100hz)

    Oo___oO


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    Quote Originally Posted by burn is weird View Post
    I've got the racecapturre track MK2, definitely does LUA and 50hz gps as well as gyro and accelerometers.
    50hz GPS?

  25. #25
    ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ burn is weird's Avatar
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    The text you have bolded appears to answer your question.

    50hz gps is quite noisy so am working on some kalmann filtering to smooth it. You can select 5,10 or 20hz too.

    a nice little bonus is having the racecapture unit capable of LUA, you effectively have an external canbus connected math processor/logic controller that can calculate any custom parameters from live ECU data, so the racecapture unit can read any ecu canbus data, do some maths on it and send back to the ecu for use in tables, or directly mapped to ecu outputs.

    basic unit comparison is here:

    https://www.autosportlabs.com/raceca...compare_matrix

    the apex unit does dead reckoning which is pretty slick.
    Last edited by burn is weird; 29-04-19 at 01:26 PM.

    Oo___oO


  26. #26
    Bannered takai's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by burn is weird View Post
    Track version has no on board memory, phone app does all the lifting. The pro and apex can log to local memory and you can pull it with the app or sd card directly later. Because they don't rely on realtime Bluetooth or wifi the logging rates are an order of magnitude higher. (up to 1000hz instead of 50/100hz)
    50hz would be enough for most things i would think, except for perhaps wheel speed sensors.

    Wonder whether it is worth getting the Pro for logging wheel slip via the ABS sensors...
    Chris
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