Trimble Access Background Images
Florida surveyors running Trimble Access, with the right combination of hardware/software can very easily make use of available (for free) background 1 foot resolution aerial images on their controller screen.
I currently use a 12.3” Microsoft Surface tablet with Windows 10 Pro (1.7 lbs.), with a Verizon account, as my controller with Trimble Access version 2020. The tablet is protected by a MobileDemand rugged case assembly with a tempered glass screen protector. Total weight of tablet and protective case/cover is 2.7 lbs. (Trimble TSC7, specs list at 3.1 lbs.). A Ram X-Grip tablet holder (at 1.3 lbs.) holds the computer when attached to the pole.
In the field, I download Mr. Sid images (for free) from labins.org for any area of the state of Florida, that I am working in. However, before using the images in Access you will have to convert them to either .tif or .jpg files (with corresponding georeferencing files). To do this (i.e. convert from .sid to .tif) just download and install the free GeoViewer. Now, you're all set to enjoy the benefits of following your movements on an aerial image.
I have long had a TSC3 for heavy woods use, but for many jobs the larger screen is nice. Now, being able to see my movements on the aerial images on the larger screen size (we do not do scanning, so I have no idea what I would want for that kind of work) is awesome.
This is not intended to get into a spitting contest with users/lovers of TSC7. I am absolutely, positively sure those are exceedingly lovely machines. Also, please note I do not suggest the above for working in the rain, even though it is fairly well sealed off.
For scanning with an SX10/SX12 or X7 that tablet would be perfect. The X7 package comes with a Trimble T100, which looks like a very nice 10" tablet; appears to be a major upgrade over the T10 but I haven't gotten my hands on one yet.
On a semi-related note, TBC 5.50 can now load ECW images as background maps.
Has anyone had any luck using WMS maps? The functionality is there, but I have yet to be able to get it to work.
I've abandoned SID for Google Earth images. Their quality is considerably better than the SID images that were available. Unfortunately I've not figured out to download a georeferenced and properly scaled Google Earth image and I have to go through an additional step with my CAD program. If you can get a Google Earth image into your tablet properly scaled and georeferenced I would purchase it ASAP.