If you're into motorsports with motorcycles or cars, you probably want to track lap times to see if modifications or improvements in your driving are making you faster on the track. You need a lap timer to be able to do this. There are some light timers available for smartphones, but those often leave a lot to be desired for most users. Today I'm going to check out the AiM Sports Solo GPS lap timer, read on for all the details.
The AiM Sports Solo GPS lap timer is a very cool device that's about the size of a small GPS navigation unit. It has a display that you put into different modes and can attach to your window with a suction cup mount or with a racecar; you can mount it using screws or Velcro. It includes software for analyzing the data collected and will show you the actual lap time and your predicted lap time. The device sells for about $400.
I road race a lot and I have used lap timer apps on both android and iPhone. The problem I always have a those apps is that they randomly just quit working, and GPS sensitivity for smartphones leaves a lot to be desired. I wanted something more accurate than would work each time I went to the track. SiM Sports sent over its Solo GPS laptop for me to check out.
I drove to the track and plugged the DC power adapter into my cars DC outlet and then into the Solo timer and turned it on. The GPS device automatically knew what track I was at a loaded the data it needed to accurately track lap times. All I had to do was plug it in and mount it to my windshield with the windshield mount from RAM that I already owned.
After the simple setup was done, I was ready to run and I hit the track. You don't have to think about the AiM Sports Solo GPS lap timer at all, it does everything for you. Each time you come around the preset mark on the track, the lap time is stored to internal memory and a new lap time starts. All recorded times are stored in the internal memory for download later. The three fastest lap times are held in the device's memory so you can see them at a glance after a session.
I also liked the predicted timing. This is particularly helpful if you're on a good run and then get stuck behind traffic or make a mistake. The predicted time that you see is what you run was shaping up to be, so you have an idea of how good you were doing. The AiM Sports Solo GPS lap timer comes with software to download all your lap times and data from internal memory to the device. If you can synchronize your camera to the data, it will even overlay G forces, speed, and a track map for you on your video. I was unable to get the video I shot to sync up with the lap data, AiM sells a camera specifically made for people who want to do this.
The GPS lap timer stores not only your lap time, but your speed obtained by GPS, G forces as you take turns, and it has a track map so you can see where you were slow on the track where you went fast. I found the G forces pretty interesting and you can play back a specific lap with an icon that moves around the track to show you how fast you're going and how hard you're taking corners at specific parts of the track. Overall, this is easily and simplest lap timer I have ever used.
- Synchronizing video to data may be an issue
If the $400 asking price doesn't scare you away, the AiM Sports Solo GPS lap timer is hands down the easiest use lap timer I have ever tried.
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