Level 3 Radar Software

Discussion in 'Equipment' started by Ethan Lang, Feb 12, 2018.

  1. Ethan Lang

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    Hello everyone, I have recently been looking to purchase a radar software for my laptop. In the past 4 years of chasing I have used radarscope on my phone and WeatherTap for my laptop which is a level 2 subscription site. I am looking to permanently install a software that will display level 3 data, so far I have ran trials on GRL3, Radarlab, and WSV3. Any other suggestions?
     
  2. DanWerts

    DanWerts Lurker

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    GRlevel3 is one of the most highly recommended software suites out there. The down side is that in order to have both high and low resolution you need level 2 as well. However, the information that GRlevel3 gives would be considered as highly in depth. The menu is easy as can be to navigate through, and a one time payment as compared to a subscription service is the more preferred method for me. I use Pykl on my phone though. for 11.99 or so it was a bit steep compared to the free software out there, but overall, I find the detail and options to be very useful. The last software I used before going to GRlevel 3 though was weather defender. So I can only really speak of those two software suites.
    Now personally, I haven't been using a laptop in the field. Mostly cause it's just me chasing solo, so I just check on my phone, check maps, and then navigate there. It's a matter of personal preference. But I hope that I at least gave a little useful information.
     
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  3. John Sacrey

    John Sacrey Lurker

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    I have used GR3/GR2/GR2AE since Feb. 2008 and love them. I have used Radarscope since April 2010 on both my iPhone and iPad, and would leave home without it. Combine the above software with an Allisonhouse Storm Chaser data package, and/or a Radarscope Pro Tier 1 package and you are pretty much set, as long as you have a decent data connection. If one had a laptop with or without GPS, using GR3 would be great as well. Using GR2 or GR2AE in the field on a laptop would not be as useful, mainly because of the amount of data needed to download, unless one had access to a fast data connection, AND how often you wanted to download fresh data (GR2AE allows you to set the download time).

    Personally, when spotting, I have both my iPhone and iPad with me using Radarscope. Use my phone as my hotspot and look at RS on my pad for the larger screen size to see the higher resolution. Hope this helps.

    John
     
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  4. Mark Blue

    Staff Member

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    It sounds like you have a similar setup as I do Ethan. I use PYKL3 on my smartphone, RadarScope Pro on my iPad, and GRL3 and GRAE on my laptop. I have a subscription for data with Allison House, which I use to feed all of the aforementioned programs.

    I saw WDT is working on a Windows version for laptops awhile back. Not sure though if it’s finished, but you could check and see on their website. I think either that or GRL3 would be the way to go, with Gibson Ridge offering quite a few settings to tinker with, especially when it comes to place files and color tables. RS continues to impress me with their dual pane, super-res, and dual pol products lineup to mention a few. In the end, it really comes down to choice and personal preferences!
     
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  5. Jeff Duda

    Jeff Duda Resident meteorological expert
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    The ability to fully interrogate a storm in a very detailed manner is a feature of the GR products (especially level 2 AE) that cannot be beaten. Granted, many people don't want to or need to be able to perform an interrogation and of course just prefer to drive to the center of the red ball with the little hooky thingy attached to the edge of it, and in many cases that gets them their 15 minutes of fame. For the latter, your PYKL3 and RadarScope apps are plenty sufficient. I personally prefer to use GR products whenever I can, and I have owned them since 2007. What's awesome about that software is there is no subscription requirement. You pay once and you have it for as long as your hardware continues to support it. Although I suppose PYKL3 and RadarScope are also somewhat like that except for the tiered service, which I don't care for.

    My only real complaint or issue with the GRX software is that it requires a Windows OS to run, so you can't use it on an Android or iOS device or any non-Windows computer. Given the age of laptops while chasing seems to be dying out, this does not bode well for the future utility of GRX while storm chasing. As my previous laptop bit the dust in 2016 I did not use GR at all for chasing in 2017, and it definitely made things more difficult. Maybe this year I will have enough money by springtime to buy a new laptop and restore my setup, but I digress.

    My advice: go with GRX. The others can't hold a candle to its simplicity and quality.
     
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  6. James Wilson

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    While chasing I have GRlvl2 on my laptop (Allison House add ons) and check Radarscope with my phone as needed.
    The two work great together
     
  7. Randy Jennings

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    I chased for several years with just RadarScope. Then I switched to using GR3 on my laptop and RadarScope on my phone and I haven't looked back - it is the best of both worlds. GR3 gives me a lot of features (like the ability to load surface obs from METARs and mesonets) on a larger screen. However, the best feature is the ability to load shapefiles of road maps. Having a detailed map and radar on the same screen has resulted in better chase success. RadarScope allows me radar access outside of the car and provides some limited level 2 data access.

    If you haven't already, I suggest you read the thread https://stormtrack.org/community/threads/gr-level-3-or-gr-level-2ae-for-chasing.27348/ . It is an interesting read.
     
  8. John Moore

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    If you have an Android phone. You might try Radar Alive Pro. I am the author and wrote it specifically for storm chasing. It has Level 3 data, METAR's, AllisonHouse integration, SpotterNetwork reporting and display - including the ability to track specific spotters, and warning boxes. You can select a radar by a long press, and it will show you the three nearest, and their distances. If you tap on a spot, it will tell you the distance from your location, the bearing to it, distance to radar, and the altitude of the radar beam center for the product selected. It will also give you your geographic coordinates, and a bit of other info.
     
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  9. John Wetter

    John Wetter SN President
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    This thread should probably be moved to equipment... But...

    The Gibson Ridge products are really the way to go. I use GR3 for chasing, and when data allows, I use GR2Analyst.
     
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  10. Ethan Lang

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    Thanks to everyone for their response I just purchased GR3 today!
     
  11. B. Dean Berry

    B. Dean Berry Moderator

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    I've had GRLevel3 for a number of years now, and I've always liked it. Very detailed, very informative.

    The new vehicle's build (documented in "Building your rig") is not going to allow for the use of a laptop. As such, I have downloaded Radarscope and Radar Alive Pro to my phone, to use this year. I'm hoping the learning curve isn't too severe.
     
  12. Shawn Camp

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    Dear Spotters and Chasers.

    Well personally I use Storm Lab !!!! I really really really like it. I love the colors for the supercells and the squall lines and the other storms during the season. It also tells you if you are getting close to a twisting storm and I have found that the resolution for the radar is Great !!!!!. I want to try GR Level 3 and see how that works and I am considering at some point also getting the WSV3 but I have not gotten that program just yet. sometimes financial stuff gets in our way and you just have to deal with it and try to find a way to afford your toys. or as my grandfather use to say You Rob peter to pay Paul !!!!!!!! hehehehehehehehehehe also I am watching this morning the chaser con in Colorado. Great stuff being presented this morning and over today and tomorrow so all of you guys and gals be sure to tune in and I would call your attention to a chaser that has recently joined us on here at stormtrack. His name is James Breitenbach he has some Great !!!!!! ideas on chaser gear that he has presented this morning so any of you chasers or spotters that have questions on that stuff. I would seriously encourage you folks to give him a shout and he can tell you more about that stuff. Looks like I will be upgrading my stuff as well hehehehehehehehehe. OK got to run for now but I will talk to you folks later on. If your in the DFW area in Texas be SURE to tune in to FOX 4 and FOX 4 weather because they are THE NEWS STATION in DFW.

    Shawn C.

    "FOX 4-WARN STORMTRACKER"
    FOX4NEWS.COM

    "WEATHER ONLY ON FOX 4"
     
  13. ScottCurry

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    Yeah, GRLevel3 is totally worth it, but I don't look at it non-stop. I keep PKYL3 on a dedicated tablet near my dash and glance a it while driving. PKYL3 has Level 3 data with multiple layering options. It also has built in storm analysis such as rotation and tornado signatures. There are only a few things missing that I like to use on GR3, like split screen radar, a list of warnings, placefiles, etc. But just for driving to a selected storm and keeping an eye out for any changes, PKYL3 is great. I don't look at my laptop unless I'm stopped somewhere and need to make a decision on where to go next. When it's decision time, GRLevel3 is my trusted source.
     
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