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Avionics Data Cards (merged)

Does anyone know what is the datacard in the right hand slot of a GNS530 or 430?

Is it compatible with the main card? Is it 2Mb or 4Mb? If it is 2Mb, could I write 430 Nav Data to it? If it is 4Mb, could I write 430W Nav data to it?

EGKB Biggin Hill

In a 430 with a terrain function, the right slot is for the terrain database, otherwise it’s populated with a dummy card. A terrain function requires a hardware upgrade (if I remember correctly, it’s about £500 or so).

LKBU (near Prague), Czech Republic

Yes, thank you, that much I know.

What I am trying to find out is whether the card in that slot is compatible with the card in the left slot.

It is the specification of the card I am interested in, and whether it is reusable as a (left hand) datacard for either 430 or 430W.

EGKB Biggin Hill

99.999% certain it is the same card. Jepp only sell 2 data cards, the difference being the storage capacity.

EHLE / Lelystad, Netherlands, Netherlands

Thank you. Do you know what the capacity of the terrain card on a 530 (not W) would be? If it’s 4Mb, I can save myself €350.

Do you sell the 4Mb cards? If so, at what price?

EGKB Biggin Hill

Would I be right in that the 500 quid terrain option does not give you audio warnings and only the much more expensive version does?

Shoreham EGKA, United Kingdom

Alternatively, it is the flight plan card.

The technology is the same, but the capacity and contents are different. The GNS430 database card is 4 MB, the GNS430W is 16 MB, and the terrain and obstacle card is 256 MB (I think). The flightplan card is also the same technology and is inserted into the Terrain slot, but only on a temporary basis to download the flightplans. I doubt it is any bigger than the database card as it doesn’t need very much storage.

The terrain feature uses the same database as the TAWS, but does not have any of the audio and other alerting features. The terrain feature is included with the base GNS430W/530W and is a $500 option on the GNS530. The TAWS feature is on the order of $8,000. If one does not have the TAWS feature, just the terrain, the terrain database does not need to be updated in order to conduct IFR. The programmer is expensive and a different one than the Jeppesen one used for the Aviation database as the data is provided directly from Garmin, not Jeppesen.

KUZA, United States
Thank you. Do you know what the capacity of the terrain card on a 530 (not W) would be? If it’s 4Mb, I can save myself €350.

Do you sell the 4Mb cards? If so, at what price?

You can buy the non W Aviation database cards on eBay for around $50. I sold mine for $30 when I upgraded to WAAS.

KUZA, United States

I find it incredible that the left and right hand slots on the GNS430/430W are managed by different companies : The left hand slot is Jeppesen – Jeppesen bespoke card reader (hardware), Jepp bespoke interface software (PC=JSUM and Mac software which is new and very buggy) and of course Jepp-supplied aviation data, all with the usual very poor information as to what one needs and how one gets it from Jeppesen. I have battled through that nonsense over the years and have a subscription for my 430W

The right hand slot however belongs to Garmin and others…one needs Garmin hardware (not the Jepp hardware) to write to the card even though the form factor of the left and right data cards are identical (how ridiculous is that!), AFAIK the RH data cards are not available from Jeppesen and the card’s spec is a bit of a mystery (see above). The Garmin PC interface software is a bit of a mystery too and I am embarking on that road of research -not for terrain data updates but instead because I understand that it is possible to load flight plans on to the right hand card of a 430W and then when inserted into the 430 the device reads in the route and everything is ready to fly….except that:

1) I can’t find the spec or a good source of supply for a spare data card for the RH slot.
2) I can’t find a source that will tell me if I can write routes to a card that also has terrain data on it.
3) I can’t find an authority on the data spec for uploaded flight plans – anyone know?
4) I don’t know anyone who does this – does the Garmin software for terrain updates also load up flight plans?

I think it is appalling that between Jeppesen and Garmin the route to answers to these obvious questions is mired in fog and misinformation. Hey Jepp / Garmin are you listening?


Last Edited by Howard at 06 Apr 14:00
Flying a TB20 out of EGTR
Elstree (EGTR), United Kingdom
75 Posts
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