Eye4Software Hydromagic

  Hydrographic Survey Software

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Generic echo sounder plugin for Hydromagic

The generic echo sounder plugin can be used to decode serial data from an echo sounder without a dedicated plugin. In this generic plugin, you can define the data format which is expected to be received from the sounder.

By defining a header, a depth value offset, a depth value length and an optional scale, you should be able to decode data from almost any echosounder (as long as the output is in ASCII).

Loading the generic echo sounder plugin for Hydromagic

To load this plugin, open the preferences window by selecting "Preferences..." from the "Options" menu.
In the window that appears, select the "Devices" tab. Next click the "Add..." button.

the devices tab in the preferences dialog

A list of available plugins will be displayed. In this list, select the "Hydromagic Generic Echosounder" plugin and click "OK" to load and display the configuration dialog.

select the Hydromagic GPS heading plugin

Configuring the generic echo sounder plugin

Serial or Ethernet Communications

First you must to configure the serial or ethernet communication with the echo sounder. This plugin supports incoming data over a serial port, TCP or UDP. For more information on this, please see the General information on using plugins document.

Configuring the data format

In this example we will show an example on how to configure a custom data format. Although there is a dedicated plugin for the DESO25 data format, we will use it as an example here:

    DA 32.08 m
    DB 31.83 m
    DA 32.04 m
    DB 31.81 m


In the configuration you can check whether the sentences start with a fixed header, the start of the depth data, the length of the depth data and whether a scale has to be applied (only when depth value isn't in meters). The above sample data reports both high and low frequency depths so we check both the 'Use Hi Frequency' and 'Use Lo Frequency' boxes.

To distinguish between the low and high frequency sentences we enter the headers, 'DA' for high frequency, 'DB' for low frequency (this could be the other way around depending on transducer configurations). Now the software knows to treat the sentence containing the 'DA' header as high frequency value and the sentence starting with 'DB' as low frequency value.

Depth Value

Now we need to tell the software where the actual depth is. Please note that this only will work when the depth is sent as an ASCII (readable) value. Also note that the characters are zero indexed, which means that the first character is at index zero (D = 0, A = 1 etc..).

The depth value starts at index '3' and is '5' characters long. This is the same for both frequencies, so we enter 3 as start offset and 5 for length. For size always counter the number of digits including the dot (.).

Scale / Units

Use a scale only when the depth is not in meters. For instance, when the depth is in centimeters, please use 0.01, when the depth is in feet, used .3048 to convert to meters.

Configure the generic sounder plugin

Unloading the generic echo sounder plugin

To unload the generic echo sounder plugin, open the preferences window by selecting "Preferences..." from the "Options" menu.
In the window that appears, select the "Devices" tab. Next select the "Hydromagic Generic Echosounder" and click the "Remove..." button.

Unload the generic echo sounder plugin