The CS1KA is an updated version of the CS1 and is only different in that it is compatible with more up to date cameras including the Sony H7 and H9 prosumer models.
Sony GPS CS1KA Use
Peveril is a small medieval garrison just outside Castleton in Derbyshire and was once owned by the Sheriff of Nottingham. Situated in the middle of the Peak district, it was a good place to see if the Sony GPS CS1KA tracking unit could find me.
Whilst on my way up to the castle which is, annoyingly, situated atop of what could possibly be the largest hill in the world, I switched on the GPS unit to see if it could find me. I climbed the steep hill and reached the inner sanctum of the walls. All the time I was climbing, the GPS couldn't find me and I got the consistent double blink from the LED. Once stood in one place, the satellite found me and the single blink of green light began to emit from the unit.
Sony GPS CS1KA Install & Import
After installing the supplied CD which is a straightforward affair, the tracking program can be run. Two icons are placed on the desktop which are the Motion picture browser and the GPS image tracker. The Picture motion browser is used to import the images into your computer. Interestingly, the program will only import from an external source and not from an image already loaded onto the computer. If you are thinking of changing the image in Photoshop then it must be imported via the Sony program and tagged with the GPS info before manipulation.
The images will be imported into a calendar and filed in chronological order according to the time they were taken which the program extracts from the EXIF data. They are saved into a folder in MyPictures by default. The images then need to be registered which is done by going to Register folder in File. For some reason, the images you want to register can only be selected in the left hand menu. Once the registration has been processed, the images can be manipulated if need be.
Sony GPS CS1KA Linking GPS information and mapping
Once the images are on the computer, the location information can be linked to the picture from the GPS unit. Opening up the GPS image tracker window allows images to be downloaded from the folder you have created on the Motion Browser stage, or from any other location if you have saved them to a different folder.
Checking the EXIF data will now show the location details in Longitude, Latitude, Direction and Date & Time.
The images can then be transferred onto the map by simply opening up the map and dragging the images over. The program will automatically update the map with the pictures.
Sony GPS CS1KA Verdict
The Sony GPS CS1 satellite navigation system can be useful for the photographer that travels a great deal. Possible uses may be for the photographer that wants to chronicle useful areas of the world to take pictures. Images can be tagged to the map as a visual reminder of the area. Should you be taking pictures whilst travelling, the system can essentially track your course.
The GPS system saves having to remember where the pictures were taken which is another weight off your mind. The information pinned to the EXIF data is useless if you are going to upload the images to Google Earth, for example. It only really works with the Sony software which uses online Google Maps. Therefore you must have an internet connection to use it. As it's your personal Google Map, it can be printed out, but it lacks decent export options.
Sony GPS CS1KA Plus points
Useful for tracking locations
Saves time on noting location details
Sony GPS CS1KA Minus points
Takes a while to find the location
Can struggle if in a difficult spot
Lacks export options for maps
The Sony GPS CS1 costs around £81 and is available from the ePHOTOzine shop here.
The Sony GPS CS1KA will be available any day now, please check with the shop before ordering.