Of course we will continue to try to see if we can get our problem resolved at Navico support but so far, it has been a very protracted and slow inefficient process that has not worked well for most questions. Unfortunately, the insight provided there is most of the time insufficient to get issues completely fixed. As you may know, Support at Navico directly for IMC questions has been a tough prospect for quite some time. Many I have spoken with over the last year or so who use the IMC have given up there and recognize they are pretty much on their own. It didn't used to be that way a few years ago but it is now. The fastest response today is usually 24 hours - 36 hours, sometimes questions are totally ignored with no response at all, they are not available via phone (only email), sometimes we find the person is not well informed on the question and sometimes provides an answer that we know is not correct. Also, often questions are only partially answered creating more questions which takes days longer to get answered. It seems to me proper support should be set up with screen sharing ability along with phone communications to vet more complicated issues so a specialist can see what the user sees and is best able to offer a solution to the problem. That is the way it is at Global Mapper, ESRI, ERDAS, and most GIS software companies. If you have a problem, someone is able to log in to your PC and help you with it and speak with you directly. It works and issues can be fixed very quickly with positive results. Dealing the complicated software like the IMC which for some versions has limited or no written instructions can't really be supported properly via email.
What is provided at this time at Navico for IMC is better than nothing but it is highly inefficient and often ineffective. I suppose that is why people come to this board in hopes they can get faster or better insight. I have learned a few things from reading posts here. I say if they are going to provide support for something, they should do it right. Even they who manage the support person or persons acknowledged to me last year it is "not ideal". We don't understand the company management's perspective on the design of this support paradigm as one of the advantages and selling points of the product line is directly related to mapping options vs. other mfgs., who provide fewer or no mapping options. At the last boat show I attende, mapping options were a selling point that all of the Navico sales reps were using. That is a major advantage that should be further exploited and the best the way to do that is to provide great support to their customers who want to make their own maps or make them and sell them to others further solidifying the brand. Charts are highly important and great charts are highly valued by customers. To that end, it seems logical to me that IMC support should be a priority.
Mfgs are always trying to create the next bell or whistle to add to their units to somehow gain an edge on the other guy. A better resolution and fancier screen, a clearer sonar etc. What I find so puzzling is they seem to focus all on the units themselves and ignore the charts. Before they are anything else, they are chart plotters and they are only as useful to the user as what is actually displayed on the screen which for the most part is a Chart. Sonar aside, it doesn't matter how fancy the unit is if the chart is bad and there are plenty of bad charts out there. My local Navico sales rep hates the Insight Charts and told me he thinks they are really bad in terms of detail etc. I get that. Depending on the area, some charts are much better than others. Since that is a fact and because the Unit is only as useful as the Chart the user is staring at it would seem the company would put far more emphasis into developing more and better chart options. Perhaps the CMap acquisition was made with this in mind but like Navionics, they map the world and can't begin to create some of the highly detailed maps that others make or could make with the IMC for their local areas. IMC support is a great investment in customer retention along with continued improvements to the IMC software to make it easier to make charts. For instance, I think a great tool to add to the IMC is a black border eliminator. Let the tool do all the work. As it is, a raster filter option does not solve that problem and the alpha filter does not solve it either and could create undesired results if used. For instance I tried the Alpha filter 1 on a trial and it cut out important raster I need to keep on. I guess you have to marry all of that trial and error with a block list to see what is happening and hopefully all of that will get you further along toward manipulating your data to hopefully eliminate the black areas. But creating a block list isn't working so well for us either. We follow the instructions provided with no luck for such a simple Shape2At5 tool and no idea why it does not work. OK.. rant over...back to trial and error and Navico emails.