Ultimate GPS Breakout V3

Ultimate GPS Breakout V3
Ultimate GPS Breakout V3
Ultimate GPS Breakout V3

Ultimate GPS Breakout V3

Track up to 22 satellites on 66 channels with this fully loaded board with built-in data.


The Ultimate GPS Breakout V3 is a hard to find good, reliable GPS module for microcontroller use, which is why haven't carried one. Most are complicated to use, power hungry and require a completely clear view of the sky to get a decent fix. But when we tested the Adafruit Ultimate GPS, we knew it was worthy enough to be in the Maker Shed.

Not only is this module easy to use, it comes fully loaded. The Ultimate GPS breakout is based on the MTK3339 chipset which can track up to 22 satellites on 66 channels, has a high-sensitivity receiver and a built in -165 db antenna. It's capable of 10hz updates, has a position accuracy of 1.8 meters, a velocity accuracy of .1 meters per second, and it only draws 20ma of current. It's also been successfully tested at over 88,000 feet. There's even options to use a battery to power the RTC for "“warm"” starts, a jack for an external antenna, a pulse per second output, and an output for adding an external LED to indicate a fix.

By far the most interesting feature of the Ultimate GPS Breakout though is its built in data logger. The module includes an on-board microcontroller and enough FLASH memory to log the time, date, longitude, latitude and height every 15 seconds for up to 16 hours. All you need to do is send it a simple "“start logging"” command using an Arduino and it will begin.

The Ultimate GPS Breakout easily hooks up to an Arduino using the included library.

Satellites: 22 tracking, 66 searching
Patch Antenna Size: 15mm x 15mm x 4mm
Update rate: 1 to 10 Hz
Position Accuracy: 1.8 meters
Velocity Accuracy: 0.1 meters/s
Warm/cold start: 34 seconds
Acquisition sensitivity: -145 dBm
Tracking sensitivity: -165 dBm
Maximum Altitude for MTK3329: 18,000 meters
Maximum Altitude for MTK3339: no limit
Maximum Velocity: 515m/s
Vin range: 3.0-5.5VDC
MTK3329 Operating current: 48mA tracking, 37 mA current draw during navigation
MTK3339 Operating current: 25mA tracking, 20 mA current draw during navigation
Output: NMEA 0183, 9600 baud default
FCC E911 compliance and AGPS support (Offline mode : EPO valid up to 14 days )
Up to 210 PRN channels
Jammer detection and reduction
Multi-path detection and compensation
Breakout board details:
Weight (not including coin cell or holder): 8.5g
Dimensions (not including coin cell or holder): 23mm x 35mm x 8mm / 0.9" x 1.35" x 0.3"
Includes headers and a CR1220 coin cell holder (soldering required.)
The other cool feature of the new MTK3339-based module (which we have tested with great success) is the built in datalogging ability. Since there is a microcontroller inside the module, with some empty FLASH memory, the newest firmware now allows sending commands to do internal logging to that FLASH. The only thing is that you do need to have a microcontroller send the "Start Logging" command. However, after that message is sent, the microcontroller can go to sleep and does not need to wake up to talk to the GPS anymore to reduce power consumption. The time, date, longitude, latitude, and height is logged every 15 seconds and only when there is a fix. The internal FLASH can store about 16 hours of data, it will automatically append data so you don't have to worry about accidentally losing data if power is lost. It is not possible to change what is logged and how often, as its hardcoded into the module but we found that this arrangement covers many of the most common GPS datalogging requirements.