Author Topic: The Davis dead horse  (Read 5660 times)

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Offline Parke10

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The Davis dead horse
« on: March 12, 2018, 04:25:42 AM »
Hello everyone,

I've been a lurker here for quite some time, even more so as of recently when I decided I finally wanted to pull the trigger on purchasing my own weather station.

So... of course even after reading other posts until I'm cross eyed i'll still beat the dead horse of trying to figure out if i want to purchase the Davis Vue or VP2.

I have 99% decided whichever route I decide to go, I'll most likely be getting the VP2 console. Personally I just like the look of that console better. I'm not sure how accurate the 24-48 hour ticker is but if its any good that would be another advantage too.

So first question would be, does anyone have any reasons they think I would be making the wrong choice by running a VP2 console over a Vue console other than it being slightly more expensive?

Second question is, for my location of Bakersfield, Ca-93308 ( for those of you who know it don't laugh too much ](*,) ) which console do you feel would be better here? Its a low humidity, snows once every 25-30 years, 3-7 inches or rain a year desert like area where summers are brutal in the sense of its not uncommon to have 110-ish degree days and winters consist of high 30s to low 40s at night with a handful of days in the low 20's. Altitude is 450ft or so.

Would the Vue ISS read accurately ? If not how off do you feel it would be?

If a VP2 is a must, do you feel the fan is a must have?

I don't really see myself having any use for the UV sensor or the solar radiation sensor. Am I crazy here?

Last but not least, it seems rainmanweather has the best prices, is this the case or are there other places I should be looking?

Thanks in advance!

Offline Intheswamp

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Re: The Davis dead horse
« Reply #1 on: March 12, 2018, 07:47:19 AM »
Welcome to the forum!  There's some sharp folks here that will help you out on your questions, I'm sure.  In the meantime, my two-cents worth. :)

If you have the option, then I'd go with the VP2...it just makes sense to me.  With the anemometer not being built into the ISS you can raise it to a more favorable height while still keeping the rain gauge and humidity/temp sensors down lower at the recommended height for them. 

I don't know what to tell you between the two consoles...if you purchase the VP2 ISS then you'll have the console that comes with it...if you purchase the Vue then you get the console that comes with it.  :?: The Vue console is limited (I'm pretty sure) to the sensors built into the Vue ISS.

I personally think, that if finances aren't a deciding issue, then the VP2 is the route to take...being able to separate the anemometer from the ISS and the ability to add on miscellaneous sensors is a very good capability.

Plastic doesn't like high UV locations.  The Davis units seem to hold up well, though over several years you will see degradation in the plastic.  But, lesser weather stations are known to become brittle and need parts replacement or total system replacement in the same period of time.  The Davis units are of very good quality, but they don't have space shuttle tile coverings so they will deteriorate over time.

I would think that in your area there is lots of solar power users/generators and also lots of irrigation for gardens and crops.  The solar sensor really shines (no pun intended<g>) in providing data for those applications.  To me, the UV sensor is a novelty more than a really useful sensor and is a good bit more expensive than the solar sensor.  If you think you want these sensors definitely purchase the VP2+ rather than the standard VP2...purchasing the sensors "after the fact" will be much more expensive.  Purchasing only the solar sensor afterward isn't too bad, though.  So, if you want all the bells and whistles then go for the VP2.

Ryan at scaledinstruments.com is a great person and is noted for his customer service.
https://www.scaledinstruments.com/discount-price-list/

Best wishes,
Ed

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Offline Felix1

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Re: The Davis dead horse
« Reply #2 on: March 12, 2018, 09:04:42 AM »
Reverse order answers.


Rainmanweather has good whole-station prices to get your attention but don't forget to factor in shipping and sales tax if applicable. For example, I dropped the Davis 6163 in my basket for grins and the cheapest delivery was 44 bucks. And that made Scientific Sales a slightly better deal since wx stations ship free. Plus Ryan of Scientific Sales is well known in the weather community, typically ships same day, stands behind what he sells and is a genuinely nice person to talk to on the phone if you want to get a feel for what problem areas a high-volume retailer sees among the various brands/models. Plus he has the largest supply of Davis repair parts outside of Davis Instruments, the company.


There are a couple other deep discounters of Davis products which you'll find once you settle on the model number you want and start searching specifically for it.


The Vue after all is an entry-level; albeit very capable, weather station with decent quality sensors but limited flexibility as far as sensor placements. For example, as you know, the anemometer is part of the unit. And you have limited expandability options. If you have any inkling whatsoever that you'll eventually get into this hobby in a big way, do yourself a favor and find the bucks to go with the much more capable VP2 right off the bat. You'll end up spending lots less in the long run.


If you haven't already looked at the specs pages to compare the published sensor accuracies, here you go:


https://www.davisnet.com/product_documents/weather/spec_sheets/6250_6351_57_SS.pdf


https://www.davisnet.com/product_documents/weather/spec_sheets/6152_62_53_63_SS.pdf


Consoles, don't have an opinion, I've never used a Vue console. You've obviously already figured out the VP2 console is usable with the Vue but you'd have to buy it extra.


Considering your location, your temp measurements will be more accurate if you have a fan-aspirated station. Now how important is that to you personally? Your call. Pay attention to the OAT accuracy spec sheets above and consider the cost trade-offs.


Last item, the spec sheet on the VP2 will give you an idea of whether the UV and solar radiation sensors are worth the $200+ extra cost. For example, I track daily evapotranspiration versus rainfall (along with leaf sensors and ground moisture sensors) to gauge how much lawn and English Garden irrigation will be required. To track evapotranspiration (ETo) requires the solar radiation sensor.   

Offline SLOweather

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Re: The Davis dead horse
« Reply #3 on: March 12, 2018, 09:44:53 AM »
Maybe you meant Ryan at Scaled Instruments?

Offline PaulMy

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Re: The Davis dead horse
« Reply #4 on: March 12, 2018, 10:04:03 AM »
I have the VP2.  I also decided to get the Envoy to connect USB datalogger to computer so the VP2 console just sits in the kitchen.  Look at it on occasion - maybe 3 - 4 times a week as I have my websites visible by other devices.  I recently bought a new Vue console because it was very cheap, $80, (before import duties, $exchange, and shipping cost to me :( ).  So now I have all 3, and I prefer what I can see on the VP2 console compared to the Vue.  However the Vue console is a neater little package to sit on a shelf of desk.

Paul
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Offline Felix1

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Re: The Davis dead horse
« Reply #5 on: March 12, 2018, 12:48:42 PM »
Thanks, SLOweather.


Brain fart.   :oops:

Offline Skywatch

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Re: The Davis dead horse
« Reply #6 on: March 13, 2018, 02:02:11 AM »
Welcome!

Before I graduated to Davis instruments I initially was after the Vue when it came out in 2009. On the advice of a good friend of mine I saved up a little more and bought a Pro2 and that was probably some of the best advice I've gotten.

When you get familiar with the system you'll appreciate the flexibility and expandability depending on how you intend to use the station requires different siting practices. You can read more on that elsewhere on this forum.

In regards to the solar and UV sensors, you probably won't know how useful the information is until you actually have it. I initially bought my station as the base model without those sun sensors and I added them later and now I couldn't imagine being without the solar information.

Personally I find the solar sensor more useful than the UV sensor for the reasons already stated.

BTW, who's selling the solar sensor for over 200$? Don't buy from whoever that is. Scaled Instruments sells them for 122$ I should mention it's cheaper to buy the Plus model then upgrade later.

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Offline sward6368

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Re: The Davis dead horse
« Reply #7 on: March 13, 2018, 11:46:52 AM »
I was in the same position as the OP earlier this year.  Decided to spend the extra $ on the VP2, 24hr FARS, but decided against the VP2+.  By the time I added the IP data logger and additional wireless transmitter for the anemometer I was at my budget top end.  Maybe one year in the future I will add on the solar radiation sensor.

I ended up with the VP2 over  the Vue for the ability to mount the anemometer at a different location and the more substantial radiation shield.  So far am pleased with my decision.

My only complaint on the console is the contrast is poor so I frequently have to turn on the back light to read it (turning back off to not impact the internal temp readings).  I typically only look briefly at the console when getting up in the morning to see temp / wind speed etc.  to determine what to wear.  The vast majority of the time I am either using the iPhone app or Weatherlink 2.0 web page to view the current conditions and trends.

As someone else noted, rainmanweather while having the best prices had very high shipping rates for even ground shipping.  Scientific Sales had the best pricing when taking into account their free shipping.  The ISS arrived in several days, the separate IP data logger arrived about a week later.  When I contacted Scientific Sales about not receiving the IP data logger originally, they responded quickly and apologized that they had depleted their stock.  I found at that time Amazon had the best price on the separate wireless anemometer transmitter.

Oh, while I knew it from the pictures, the size of the VP2 is much larger than the Vue, seems much larger when I actually had it in hand than I it looked from the various pictures.  Just something to think about depending on where you plan to locate the WS.
« Last Edit: March 13, 2018, 11:48:45 AM by sward6368 »

Offline zackdog

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Re: The Davis dead horse
« Reply #8 on: March 13, 2018, 03:35:45 PM »
This will give you some idea of the differences in the data you will get with the two units.  The VP2 Plus has a 24 hr FARS and is located about 12 ft above the ground, with the anemometer at 17 ft.  The VantageVue is located  5 ft above the ground and about 2 ft horizontally from the VP2.

Mark

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Offline Parke10

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Re: The Davis dead horse
« Reply #9 on: March 14, 2018, 02:51:36 AM »
As expected, nothing but quick, informative responses! Thank you to everyone who has replied so far!! It's a ton of help, but somehow making the choice harder and easier at that same time  ](*,) Doh!

I saw that someone mentioned my intended use for the station. I basically want a set it and forget it unit, it will be just a hobby and another "toy" to have. That's part of why I was leaning towards the Vue, which is surprisingly what Davis themselves recommended.

Regardless of what unit I go with I will have very limited space to put it and may actually have to mount it on the roof, I've read in some places that this would be okay as long as I mount it 5ish feet above the peak roof line. That would probably be achievable with the Vue but may be a little more bulky/eye sore with the VP2. Which leads to the possibility of getting the transmitter for the anemometer ( further raising the price ) and just mounting that on the roof.

Mounting either at the 5-6 ft above the ground level just wouldn't make sense as far as the anemometer as my backyard situation is House blocking the North, 6 ft fence to the East and South, Garage to the West. The house is about 1,400 sq ft, 9,000sq ft lot and has 16 solar panels on the roof.




So I guess with all this rambling my question is, with either unit how inaccurate are the temp/rain reading if mounting them higher up than the recommended level.

To me since its just a hobby, although I'd like accurate readings.. I could probably settle for them being a little off. Although Zackdogs's post actually shows more discrepancy than I'd like to see.

I suppose if I get the Vue ( which I would probably regret ) I could always move that to the office or beach house and upgrade to the VP2.

Are any of my thoughts making sense or is this just one big ramble?
« Last Edit: March 14, 2018, 04:27:22 AM by Parke10 »

Offline Bushman

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Re: The Davis dead horse
« Reply #10 on: March 14, 2018, 03:41:43 PM »
"Buy once - cry once" like my Dad used to say!  Or forget Davis and pick up a second or third tier device for the 1/3 cost.

Offline vreihen

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Re: The Davis dead horse
« Reply #11 on: March 14, 2018, 06:42:14 PM »
My late father used to say that the best way to avoid buyer's remorse was to buy the best option of any item.  It is worth noting that he had a wired Davis anemometer on the roof of his house in 1990.

On the Vue front, maybe this picture of my Acu-Rite 5-in-1 will make your decision easier about all-in-one sensors:



I have dozens more just like it from this month alone, and will probably have more with nor'easter #4 in the 7-day model runs.  Do you think that a VP2 anemometer will clog with snow?????
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Offline Parke10

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Re: The Davis dead horse
« Reply #12 on: March 14, 2018, 10:13:00 PM »
Vreihen, although that picture is amusing :lol: haha, I don't have much worry here in the sense of snow as the last time it snowed here was January 25th 1999, and that was only about 6inches.

I've narrowed my options basically down to either way I go they will have to be mounted to the roof of my house. The back yard is just so small and closed in that there no reasonable place to put it besides the roof.

Offline Parke10

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Re: The Davis dead horse
« Reply #13 on: March 14, 2018, 11:26:54 PM »
Well I went to purchase the VP2 FARS from scaled, but its out of stock. Damn it!

Offline Bushman

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Re: The Davis dead horse
« Reply #14 on: March 15, 2018, 01:32:20 AM »
Another of Dad's axioms:  "Never buy the first model year of ANYTHING!".  That one is one worth remembering, especially with cars and tech.

Offline Mattk

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Re: The Davis dead horse
« Reply #15 on: March 15, 2018, 05:41:25 AM »
This will give you some idea of the differences in the data you will get with the two units.  The VP2 Plus has a 24 hr FARS and is located about 12 ft above the ground, with the anemometer at 17 ft.  The VantageVue is located  5 ft above the ground and about 2 ft horizontally from the VP2.

Mark

That doesn't make a lot of sense re the rainfall, by rights a rain gauge is best at ground level, the Vue is @ 5 feet, the VP2 @ 12 feet, the difference just isn't right?

Offline Intheswamp

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Re: The Davis dead horse
« Reply #16 on: March 15, 2018, 10:19:39 AM »
This will give you some idea of the differences in the data you will get with the two units.  The VP2 Plus has a 24 hr FARS and is located about 12 ft above the ground, with the anemometer at 17 ft.  The VantageVue is located  5 ft above the ground and about 2 ft horizontally from the VP2.

Mark

That doesn't make a lot of sense re the rainfall, by rights a rain gauge is best at ground level, the Vue is @ 5 feet, the VP2 @ 12 feet, the difference just isn't right?
The "Max Rain" in the summary down at the bottom...even though the two stations might each record a different amount, shouldn't both stations have the maximum rainfall recorded on the same day?  :-?   And, looking in the chart the Vue's maximum rainfall day is the 13th and shows .15" whereas the VP2 for that day only shows .01".   Likewise for the comparison of the VP2's max rainfall on the 5th as compared to the Vue's.  Odd.

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Offline zackdog

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Re: The Davis dead horse
« Reply #17 on: March 15, 2018, 11:15:14 AM »
Okay, okay, the rainfall, or should I say melted snow, is totally wrong on the Vue while the VP2 has the rain collector heater.  I correct the rainfall amounts on the VP2 to match my CoCoRAHS readings.  Also, the HDD for the Vue are correct, but the HDD for the VP2 are actually freezing degree days and the CDD are thawing degree days.Sorry for the confusion.

Mark

P.S.  I normally do not have the Vue up during the winter, but I only put it up to check reception of it with the VP2 console during a cold month.
« Last Edit: March 15, 2018, 11:23:32 AM by zackdog »
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Offline Parke10

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Re: The Davis dead horse
« Reply #18 on: March 15, 2018, 02:17:56 PM »
Well that makes a little more sense, I was convinced the vue was completely inaccurate based on those rainfall numbers your data was showing. I immediately disowned the Vue after seeing that.  Might have to give it a second thought now. But like I stated above, regardless of which unit I go with Im stuck to mounting it somewhere near the roof.
« Last Edit: March 16, 2018, 01:54:50 AM by Parke10 »

Offline jas340

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Re: The Davis dead horse
« Reply #19 on: March 16, 2018, 10:28:29 PM »
Go with the Vantage Vue. You will love it. It's main shortcomings are with snow and ice. Not a problem for you. Also the barometer is worthless if you live at higher elevations(3830ft for me). Again, not a problem for you. I started with an Oregon Scientific WMR-968.I had it for 5 years. Then went to the Vue for 6 years. Now I have Vaisala WXT510 which I plan on using until it's technology becomes available at a lower price point and is wireless.
« Last Edit: March 16, 2018, 10:49:25 PM by jas340 »

Offline Parke10

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Re: The Davis dead horse
« Reply #20 on: March 17, 2018, 12:55:25 AM »
Go with the Vantage Vue. You will love it. It's main shortcomings are with snow and ice. Not a problem for you. Also the barometer is worthless if you live at higher elevations(3830ft for me). Again, not a problem for you. I started with an Oregon Scientific WMR-968.I had it for 5 years. Then went to the Vue for 6 years. Now I have Vaisala WXT510 which I plan on using until it's technology becomes available at a lower price point and is wireless.

Honestly the Vue seems like a great home hobby unit and I originally was only looking at it and not even considering the VP2, the Vue with VP2 console is what the Davis guys have recommended to me over the phone and in person while at the world ag expo.


BUT with how small the radiation shield is, and the lack of a fan for it... Im pretty worried that in the hotter time of year, which is about 6-7 months long.. that the number will pretty inaccurate as far as temperature goes.

The Davis guys who are familiar with my town assure me that a slight breeze will solve the problem but Im still skeptical on that. 100+ degrees for a couple a months and 80-90 for the rest of the hot months seems like it will play havoc on the data.

Offline PaulMy

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Re: The Davis dead horse
« Reply #21 on: March 17, 2018, 09:29:10 AM »
Quote
the Vue with VP2 console is what the Davis guys have recommended to me over the phone and in person while at the world ag expo.
That doesn't sound right to me.  What is the benefit of the higher cost VP2 console with a Vue ISS.  If anything, the other way around unless you will add extra sensors.

Enjoy,
Paul
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Offline vreihen

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Re: The Davis dead horse
« Reply #22 on: March 17, 2018, 10:14:22 AM »
Aesthetics.  Popular opinion is that the VP2 console looks better and is easier on the eyes.....
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Offline Parke10

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Re: The Davis dead horse
« Reply #23 on: March 17, 2018, 05:07:36 PM »
Aesthetics.  Popular opinion is that the VP2 console looks better and is easier on the eyes.....

Exactly, the Vue console makes me feel like Im stuck in the early 90s and although the VP2 Console is dated. its far better looking. Someone who is getting a Vue wouldnt care about  additional sensors most likely.

Offline Old Tele man

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Re: The Davis dead horse
« Reply #24 on: March 17, 2018, 05:42:47 PM »
NOTE - VP2 console can NOT transmit ALT-barometric pressure that CWOP expects to receive; the VUE console, however, CAN transmit ALT-baro pressure, should you wish to send it.
« Last Edit: March 17, 2018, 05:45:00 PM by Old Tele man »
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