Use top technology to give your rescues an advantage with the Ortovox S1.
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Share your thoughts
Bells and Whistles
This is a great beacon. great. I have used this among other pieps and bca beacons. It is very easy to use, minimal spiking, easy to use, even for beginners , multiple burial locators. Unfortunately it cost a bit more, and other beacons with triple antennas are out for 100 dollars less. My recommendations would be the BCA tracker 2 or the Pieps dsp. Save the difference in money for a new pair of skins or avalung!
Recent S1 Purchase
Simple and straight forward. The product automatically switches from transmit to search and the funtionality is nice as you really only have two buttons to go through the menu and select the desired function. I would buy it again!
I've enjoyed the inclinometer function more than I thought i would. It's quick and easy to whip out the S1 and test a slope on the way up or down.
My avi instructor had one of these and I was pretty impressed. Worth the investment I would say. The feature for multiple burials is great.
Like the compact size. Harness fits body well. While searching you really follow the flux lines in so your not taking such a direct route in. I find with my old beacon you walk more direct in a search test with both. Multi search is quick and easy compared to most, find a guy turn him off on your screen so as to goto next guy with less interference. Some cool extra's to browse through. Not sure how much better the newer software is since it came with the latest software. Pleased with initial signal pick up distance. If you can get past the price go for it!
quick, very easy to use
I had previously used the bca tracker mainly and tried a few other transcievers as well. I picked up the S1 after reading multiple reviews mainly hoping for a much quicker search time.
After a quick skim of the manual I was able to recover a burried beacon within 5 minutes on my first try using this transciever. In comparision I averaged around 8-9 minutes with a BCA. I hadn't used the BCA extensively and I'm sure I could get my times down with it, but not to the same degree.
The intial search is very easy and quick, it follows a flux line well even moving quickly. For your final grid search remember to slow down and do not go to small on your final grid (as you would with any other transciever). I had a back pack burried on the downhill side of a tree well on one search and was only looking at around a 5' square, I decided to go a little wider only to find the readings go down even futher on the downhill side of the trees. The pack was stuffed in the branches on the downhill side. Doing a proper search was much quicker then digging through a tree :)
I really like the circle diagram and the faint outline during the final search, it beats trying to memorize your lowest reading. I can see that being very handy in a real life situation where you are more prone to panic.
Battery life was great, after going through an afternoon of searches I was still at 98% battery life.
Overall I'm very happy with the S1, it is well worth the extra money.
I made the switch to the S1 when if came out a few years ago. Every time I run a drill I am amazed at how fast and consistent this transceiver locates signals. I love the ability to mark off a signal once located, and move to the next while still being able to go back to the first signal. It makes dealing with multiple burial situations a lot easier. The real time screen is easy to understand and very accurate. As mentioned earlier, cell phones seem to disrupt the beacon when in search mode. Might as well turn your phone off anyhow since you're out enjoying the backcountry right? I can't say enough good things about this beacon other than I hope I don't have to use it in a real situation, and take good care of it, it is like a computer after all.
BC.com is shipping the 2.1 version
I just ordered this for the upcoming season, and was pleased to recieve the newest version (2.1), which has slightly different colors on the inside (the metallic looking color), and is obviously the most recent software update.
See a picture here -- http://en.ortovox.com/transceiver/s1.html
I haven't had a chance to use it yet, but I would say that my only complaint out of the box is that the neoprene cover on the harness is VERY tight, so it's a bit difficult to snap the buckle closed. Maybe it stretches a bit with time....
The S1 is really easy to use and has significantly decreased my search time for single and multiple burials. MAKE SURE TO TURN OFF YOUR CELL PHONE WHEN USING! I experienced some frightening ghost victims with my cell phone on.
Really well built and waterproof as well. I left it in a buried duffle bag in AK and it became fully submerged in water for 2 days. I figured it was ruined, but after drying it out it works fine.
Also, updating to the new software was quick and easy at Wasatch Touring.
It's early season, time for beacon drils.
*New* 2.1 versions
These are the latest S1 Transceiver.
This is an amazing piece of equipment, and I really trust it. But try not to need it, ok?
Grandson has analog transciever now -is...
Grandson has analog transciever now -is there a difference between the analog and digital ones?
In a general sense digital beacons are easier to use in an emergency situation, and are superior in multiple burial scenarios.Get a digital beacon.
As long as it is transmitting on 457 freq and not so old that it is on the older freq or a dual freq model it should make him even safer. In practice/testing I have found the analogs like the F1, M1 & M2 seem to have a stronger transmitting signal than some of the newer digitals. As to searching for a partner now that is another matter.
The M2 like the M1 or F1 are excellent units for someone willing to train & practice with them. For a trained searcher it should have a faster find time than any 2 or 3 antenna beacon for the simple reason it does not need to take the time to process the incoming information like the Pieps DSP, tracker, or similar beacon. It is easy for an excited searcher to outrun a 2 or 3 antenna beacon. That being said for someone not willing to practice with the beacon go with a Tracker, Pieps DSP or similar type with the tracker being the easiest to use for a non-practicing beginner. Fast successful multiburial scenarios with the M1, M2 or F1 require lots of practice and excluding guides, ski patrol, & SAR folks I doubt most people would get enough practice to pull them off with success. Here again the Tracker & Pieps DSP would proform better for a person not trained and not practicing often.
Write your answer here...As the first answer above states, an analog beacon tends to have longer range, but takes far more training and practice to use correctly. A friend of mine hid a beacon with a candy bar, and sent his 8 year old out with the S1 to find it, which he did in no time flat! (amazing what the right tool and proper motivation can do). There is no chance this would have happened with an analog beacon. The S1's easy to read screen and flagging make it the best beacon out there.
I've had to return two S1 beacons within one year because of screen failure. Ortovox need to fix this problem. You would think the flip open and close feature would protect the sceen better, maybe it has nothing to do with it. Basicly one day you'll turn on your S1 open it up and only have half a screen working. For five bills I shouldn't have to be returning the S1 not even once. What a burden.
Has anyone seen this beacon break after...
Has anyone seen this beacon break after smashing against a cliff wall, or some other hazard that regularly occurs in avalanche scenarios?
I got slammed into some trees one time with this beacon on, broke 3 ribs, but I was saved because it keep transmitting... I do not think this beacon is any more likely than any other beacon to break in the case of being slammed up against some hard object while being carried in an avalanche.
how does the ortovox compare with the...
how does the ortovox compare with the tracker? under stress, is one going to be easier to use and therefor more effective?
I love this beacon, it's almost idiot proof, if you already know what you are doing. It gives you the distances and directions to the victim, and works just as you need it to if you are the one that needs the help. This, in my opinion, is a better option than the Tracker.
I've been using the Tracker for the past 10 years and after just a few sessions with the S1 I am substantially faster on single and multiple burials.
how does the ortovox s1 compare to the...
how does the ortovox s1 compare to the mammut pulse barryvox?
They are similar in that they are both three antenae transceivers used for avalanche rescue. The 'selling point' of the two units is what differs. The Ortovox S1 has a screen that flips up like a cell phone. This screen then shows you the distance and direction of buried victims by placing icons representative of people on the screen. The Mammut Pulse is popular because it can actually detect small chest compressions and relay that information back to other Mammut Pulse transceivers. The downside of this is that it cannot transmit these vital signs to any other beacon but the Mammut Pulse. So, the victim and rescuer must both have the Mammut to use the feature it has become popular for.
Takes practice but really good.
This for sure takes practice...But is worth it. Get found faster!