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Garmin 18x LVC GPS Navigator Unit

by Garmin
4.8 out of 5 stars 26 customer reviews
| 5 answered questions

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Standard Packaging
  • High Sensitivity LVC Sensor with Bare Wire Connection
  • WAAS Enabled High Sensitivity GPS Receiver
  • Comes w/A Connector End that Can Attach to a CMOS for OEM Applications
  • Non Volatile Memory for Storage of Configuration Information
  • Raw Measurement Output Data for Sophisticated Customer Applications
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Frequently Bought Together

  • Garmin 18x LVC GPS Navigator Unit
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  • StarTech.com Assembled DB9 Female Solder D-SUB Connector with Plastic Backshell (C9PSF)
Total price: $68.50
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Product Description

Package Type: Standard Packaging

GARMIN 010-00321-36 GPS 18x LVC. The GPS 18x is a GPS sensor targeted to OEM clients for use in automotive, fleet vehicle, and electronics applications where a small, highly accurate GPS receiver is needed. This 12 parallel channel, WAAS enabled GPS receiver is available in either CMOS level serial or USB 2.0 full speed versions, and comes with an integrated magnetic base. The puck like receiver is 2.4 inches in diameter and weighs just ounces, making it an ideal solution in applications where space is at a premium. The GPS 18x is offered in three different cable configurations: A style USB, DB 9 pin serial with 12 volt cigarette lighter adapter /PC, or bare wire /LVC. The PC and LVC versions both default to output data in the industry standard NMEA 0183 data format, but may also be user programmed to output data in the GARMIN proprietary format. The USB version produces data only in the GARMIN proprietary format. All three versions of the GPS 18 come complete with non volatile memory for storage of configuration information, a real time clock, and raw measurement output data for sophisticated customer applications. The LVC version additionally provides a pulse per second logic level output whose rising edge is aligned to the UTC second within 1 microsecond. The USB 2.0 full speed version of the GPS18 is also compatible with USB 1.1 full speed hosts.

Product Information

Package Type:Standard Packaging
Product Dimensions 4 x 2 x 4 inches
Item Weight 4.2 ounces
Shipping Weight 8.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
ASIN B0016O3T7A
Item model number 010-00321-36
National Stock Number 5826-01-583-7993
Customer Reviews
4.8 out of 5 stars 26 customer reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
Best Sellers Rank #29 in Electronics > GPS & Navigation > Vehicle GPS > Trucking GPS

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Package Type: Standard Packaging Verified Purchase
The Garmin 18x LVC is a bare lead OEM GPS unit with a measurement pulse output aligned to the Universal Coordinated Time (UTC) second, within a maximum error of 1.0 microsecond (1.0 millionth of a second) Only the LVC variety outputs the measurement pulse (Pulse Per Second) signal. As a retail item this unit is primarily used for very accurate timekeeping. One could theoretically use it for navigation, but with bare leads you need to solder a connector on the unit, and there are other 18x models, not the LVC, that have connectors from the factory.

But the 18x models with connectors DO NOT output the precision measurement pulse, so they are useless as reference clocks. You may wonder why anyone would need a clock accurate to within 1.0 microsecond. The clocks inside computers are notoriously inaccurate, sometimes up to an hour off per day. So, the Internet is peppered with reference clocks. People interested in time keeping will place a reference clock server online, and thousands of Desktop PCs also connected to the Internet can poll these servers to accurately set their clocks. The reference clocks need to be accurate, because of dispersion in distribution (i.e it takes a small bit of time for the client PCs to receive the time from the time server. Having microsecond accurate time servers insures no client will ever drift past 1/2 second from UTC.

It's all automated. The user doesn't do anything. It just happens. So that is what this particular unit is for, from a retail perspective. There is a web page, [...] , explaining in very simple terms how to make a time server. Soldering skills are required for individuals to make use this unit. The 18x USB, not the 18x LVC, is handy for navigation via a laptop.
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Package Type: Standard Packaging Verified Purchase
I purchased the GPS 18x LVC for NTP timekeeping purposes due to its highly-accurate 1-pulse-per-second output. This output is not available on the other GPS 18x models. For those interested only in navigation and not precision timekeeping, the GPS 18x USB model is probably the best option.

As the LVC model is a "barewire" model meant for OEM integration, it requires a little bit of soldering to get setup the way one wants. I opted to connect the GPS to a small circuit board that supplies power to the GPS, has a fuse, and has indicator LEDs to show the state of the GPS: one LED shows that power is applied, with another LED shows when the PPS signal is transmitted. The circuit board has a DB-9 serial connection to the computer. Other people I know have connected the PPS and data wires directly to a DB-9 serial port and the power/ground wires to a male USB-A plug without any LEDs. Either way works fine -- the GPS draws about 60mA by itself (mine draws 75mA with the LEDs) and so can be powered easily off of a USB port (which can supply 100mA without the device needing to ask for more power).

It's difficult to rate the GPS unit itself as it's so simple and there's not a whole lot of features: supply it with power, let it see the sky, and it starts outputting data. It managed to find an initial lock and output PPS signals within about 3 minutes of when I turned it on for the first time. Since then, it's able to reestablish a lock within about 5 seconds after being powered down and turned back on again. For testing purposes, I have it inside my apartment on top of a box placed next to my northeast-facing window and it is able to see between 5 and 9 satellites depending on the time of day.
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Package Type: Standard Packaging Verified Purchase
I have the Garmin 18x LVC GPS attached to a serial card installed in a Debian Linux 'Squeeze' box (which was configured using the Setserial, GPSD, and NTP packages).

USB based GPS units are useless for accurately setting the time.

The 18x LVC GPS unit requires 5 volts of power (red wire), and for this I use a specific serial card, the StarTech.com 1 Port PCI RS232 Powered Serial Adapter Card (PCI1S650PW). The card can be configured to supply either 5 or 12 volts (or none) on pin 9 of the RS-232 DB-9 connector, and can draw power either from the PCI bus itself or from the PC power supply directly via the onboard Molex floppy power connector. (I used the latter option). Once the jumpers had been set and the card installed no drivers were required for Debian, Setserial recognizing the card as having a 16550A UART with a baud base of 921600.

The GPS unit itself is mounted externally on the chimney, as the GPS satellite signals are fairly weak, so installing outside is the best option as the GPS itself is weatherproof. For me, this location gives the GPS a clear view of the sky, but the 5 meter (16 feet) cable would not be long enough to reach the computer inside the house, so I replaced almost all of the original serial cable (which is molded onto the 18x LVC). The wires (especially the three signal wires, which includes the PPS) are also *VERY* thin. So, I cut the original cable close to the GPS unit itself and extended it with my own cable which runs all the way back to the computer and is terminated with a serial DB-9 connector. If you do this, remember to use a shielded cable.
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