Kestrel product discussion thread. Horus Kestrel


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KestrelConsultant
December 4, 2012, 09:15 PM
Hello,
My name is Chris, consultant for Kestrel. I'm here to discuss your gripes, concerns and overall product satisfaction on the Kestrel line of products. I'm also lead consultant on the Horus Kestrel, and Would like to hear everyone's honest opinion on the piece of equipment and what features you would like to see implemented on future models. I'm doing this because the consumer drives the product and the people at Kestrel really care about the military, law enforcement, competitive shooter and hunter and want honest insight on how to make their product better.

If you want to contact me offline please PM me or email.

If you have any questions on the HorusKestrel and need technical assistance please contact me directly and I will resolve it.

Thanks,
Chris

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taliv
December 4, 2012, 09:30 PM
Welcome to Thr!

I've been using the 4000 nv for a while. It's great. Basically I just use it to get a DA reading and temp and to check the wind speed occasionally.

Bluetooth would have been nice but wasn't worth the $ to me. Simple is good.

Other than making it slimmer and lighter and using standard batteries (aa or 123 instead of aaa) I can't think of too much.

KestrelConsultant
December 4, 2012, 09:39 PM
Thank you for the response and we are working on the battery issue and an AA battery model is in the works.

In regards to the Bluetooth feature, how many users use it in conjunction with an Andriod platform running a ballistics app like shooter or applied ballistics?

Jdillon
December 4, 2012, 11:23 PM
I have been using a Kestrel 4000 unit for about ten years now for hunting, fishing and shooting. The ability to record and download data is very useful but the interface could use upgrading. It would be nice if it would interface with Apple products such as the iPad, iPhone or Macs. I use JBL Ballistic AE software installed on my iPhone at the range and on some hunts and it would be very cool if I could plug the Kestrel into the iPhone whereby the ballistic software could utilize the atmospheric data. I don't have an issue with size or the fact that it uses AAA batteries. All in all, a very cool unit that is always with me in the field.

esheato
December 5, 2012, 12:18 AM
Hi,

Welcome!

I have a Kestrel 3000, which I bought for the wind/temp/humidity readings during long range practice. Once I learned about DA, I kind of kicked myself in the butt.

Why not make one specifically for shooters using a ballistics app on their phone? I can't swing 600 bucks for the Horus integrated unit, nor do I need it, when I can use the Shooter app on my phone (which is $10 BTW).

What I mean is, why not make a unit with wind, temp, humidity, DA, bluetooth and a hard cover? It'll populate the app via Bluetooth and make my day a bit simpler.

When I shoot, I take a rifle, shooting mat, phone (for ballistics) and a Kestrel. Put the features, and only those features, on a unit. Call it the Rifleman or something snazzy.

See, I'm not shooting matches....I'm just a serious plinker.

Appreciate you stopping by...it's always comforting when reps come over and chat.

Ed

taliv
December 5, 2012, 09:29 AM
i also like esheato's suggestions and was thinking about that myself, but didn't think you guys would go for it :)

i don't mind the kludgy interface, because the only three things i use fit on the user-defined screen: wind, temp, DA. so in the past year, i've only ever turned the unit on, got a reading, turned it off. i never press buttons other than on/off.

one further thought... would be great if it actually worked with night vision. i was disappointed in the "NV mode". if i were dreaming, i'd like a unit that works like the compass that attaches to PVS14s and gives a heads-up. no configs, just show wind/temp/DA

KestrelConsultant
December 5, 2012, 12:03 PM
The gun loader software is one of our biggest customer gripes and I understand why. It is something were looking at and because its property of Horus, it really falls into their lap but were looking at alternate means to deliver a top notch software solution that FULLY supports the kestrel in both PC and Mac.

Ed,
That is an excellent idea and I will be forwarding that to higher ASAP.

esheato
December 5, 2012, 12:49 PM
Awesome! Glad I could help.

Could you do us a favor and keep us in the loop? We can't buy it if we don't know it's available. ;)

KestrelConsultant
December 5, 2012, 01:07 PM
Of course. When I got this position my first order of business was to reach out to the online forums like this one and snipers hide. I'm also easily available to answer any questions. Just pm me and I'll give you my cell. I've been using a kestrel since 2007 and from Afghanistan to Iraq it's a device I stand by and I really want to make it the best device out there and the CEO supports that 100%.

Ash
December 5, 2012, 02:56 PM
I don't use it for shooting, but I use a kestrel for forest fire to determine wind speed particularly - something really important when anticipating the movement of a rolling fire.

1858
December 5, 2012, 03:06 PM
I've been using the 4500NV model for about three years now and find it really useful ... not just for shooting either. Like taliv I have a user screen set up with the variables that are important to me when I'm shooting. Things I'd add or change ... I wish the housing was rubber armored (less slippery) rather than hard plastic since I dropped it onto lava from about 4' on one occasion. It would be useful if it had a calculator mode built in (use five center keys to select numbers and functions) but overall I think it's a great unit.

As for the 4500NV Horus Atrag, I would probably buy one if I didn't already have the standard 4500NV. Out of interest, what does the military version offer that the civilian version doesn't?

"Horus software that comes with the 4500 Atrag Ballistics is the civilian version. The military version of the Horus ATrag Ballistics software is only available via special GSA contract to officials with the correct security clearance."

KestrelConsultant
December 5, 2012, 03:55 PM
There is very little difference between the military version of the Kestrel and the Civilian version. The military version is built from all US sources parts, has lititum disposable batteries standard and has slightly modified external housing in relation to IR. However, no difference in the functioning of the device.

snakeman
December 5, 2012, 03:59 PM
more companies should do this whole forum thing. It's probably an excellent way to receive feedback.

KestrelConsultant
December 5, 2012, 04:09 PM
I agree. I don't know everything and I'm new to the consultanting gig, but I will send every suggestion and gripe immediately to Kestrels front office. That's what they want to really fine tune this product.

In regards to hunting, any features that we should be looking at? Both the kestrel platform and gun loader software.

KestrelConsultant
December 5, 2012, 04:53 PM
Bluetooth conventional (known as just “Bluetooth”) – what’s in the Kestrel now:

All iOS devices support ONLY the various audio related profiles (headset, stereo headset, phone book) for standard Bluetooth. They do not support the “SPDP” – serial port data protocol – for wireless data exchange. The only way to exchange data with a non-jailbroken iPhone is if the hosted device has a physical Apple authentication chip in it and has gone through the extensive Apple testing to allow data exchange. Pretty much nobody does this because it’s painful and expensive. That is why a Bluetooth Kestrel 4000 cannot hand data to Shooter or any of the other ballistics apps in iOS.

Most Android devices DO support SPDP in their firmware and provide built-in API’s for making connections and exchanging data. http://developer.android.com/guide/topics/connectivity/bluetooth.html. We have provided information and support to a variety of Android developers to leverage this ability so data can be polled directly from the Kestrel into the application. A list of our current partners is here: http://www.nkhome.com/kestrel/software-partners/.

Stay on the lookout for new features, hopefully around SHOT SHOW.

esheato
December 5, 2012, 05:15 PM
I've got an Android and use Shooter almost exclusively.

Now I just need a shooting focused Kestrel with Bluetooth and minimum features...and cheap.

KestrelConsultant
December 5, 2012, 05:53 PM
What's your take on Horus Atrag? Likes, dislikes.

modarmory
December 5, 2012, 08:08 PM
As a vendor of Kestrel units we are very please with how fast you respond to questions that our customer have and warranty claims (fast repair).

Thank you for your great customer service.

KestrelConsultant
December 6, 2012, 10:46 AM
Thank you.

taliv
December 6, 2012, 11:00 AM
What's your take on Horus Atrag?

expensive and i don't really like it. i prefer the shooter software on a phone. bigger screen, easier to see, much easier to enter data, has more features.

i'm generally not a horus fan anyways (reticles and whatnot... meh)

KestrelConsultant
December 6, 2012, 01:06 PM
For the phone, Andriod or IPhone?

taliv
December 6, 2012, 02:19 PM
iphone currently, but i'm not married to it.

i'm a big fan of sustainability. i.e. long battery life, and rechargeability. even if mine had bluetooth, which is cool, i'd turn it off to make the battery last longer.

KestrelConsultant
December 9, 2012, 09:49 AM
Ill be going up to HQ next week and will discuss everyone's concerns with the team.

KestrelConsultant
December 28, 2012, 07:55 PM
Great news, Kestrel will be announcing its new and improved hardware/software at SHOT show. Trust me when I say that Kestrel has been listening and the stuff people want will be delivered. Stay tuned.

bama1
December 29, 2012, 03:31 AM
If it works with iPhone 5 count me in. Ballistics AE is what I use and wanted a Kestrel for wind and DA. I can use the app for current conditions, however, wind is from station report and your position is maybe different.

esheato
December 29, 2012, 03:48 AM
Looking forward to the news.

Thanks for the update also.

KestrelConsultant
December 29, 2012, 01:43 PM
IOS support is coming, we understand the demand for it. Also software, interference tweaks, G7 support ect... Plus some secret stuff for SHOT show.

Derek Zeanah
December 29, 2012, 02:21 PM
Glad to hear it. We'll look for you when we're there.

Derek Zeanah
December 29, 2012, 03:14 PM
You know, I'm stepping out of my comfort area with this, but here's a question: on the description for the 4500NV I find this:

Note: The Horus Ballistics support G1 ballistic coefficients only.Wouldn't using G7 BCs make more sense for long range shooting? Is this going to be an option in the future?

JShirley
December 29, 2012, 03:47 PM
PM sent.

KestrelConsultant
January 9, 2013, 03:14 PM
Please check out the Shot Show coverage forum for the latest press releases!! Some great announcements have been made.

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