Want To Look Like A Weather Pro? The Davis Instruments Vantage Vue Weather Station Lets You Do Just That

Davis Vantage Vue Review heading

We follow this path with every hobby, sport or interest we decide to pursue. We start with the basics, and after mastering them we move on to more advanced equipment. At some point though, we have reached the point where we have become so proficient and experienced in our chosen field, that you may require nothing but the best possible equipment in your field.

At some point during the process of pursuing our hobby or passion for all things weather related, you will reach this stage. You have gone through all the beginner and advanced home weather stations, but now only the best and most accurate equipment will meet your requirements.

Enter Davis Instruments line of professional weather systems. Often called the gold standard for all weather equipment, or the "Rolls Royce of home weather stations". These accolades are well deserved.

This company has been around, providing weather enthusiasts and professionals, with accurate and reliable weather data, long before home weather stations became more common and affordable. (And with so many manufacturers & models to choose from.)

With a history dating back more than 50 years, the company has expanded since and are currently servicing various sectors and industries. Luckily this does not mean they neglected their home weather stations.

If you are looking for the best weather station money can buy, Davis Instruments is by far your best choice. When it comes to accuracy and reliability, they simply are in league of their own. With it comes the inevitable bigger price tag. (But totally justified).

Davis Instruments Vantage Vue Box

The Davis Instruments Vantage Pro2 is the flagship and best weather station in their consumer line-up. However, its smaller brother, the Davis Instruments 6250 Vantage Vue, provides you with measurements and features almost on par with Vantage Pro2 at a much more affordable price.

As the Davis Instruments Vantage Vue is the focus of this post, you can rest assured that the little you sacrifice in accuracy at this level, is really negligible.

Using my Ambient Weather WS-2902A Osprey, as well as a fellow weather enthusiast's Davis Vantage Vue as reference points, I will be looking at all the features, as well as how well it performs in order to help you to make the best possible decision. 

Installation And Setup

The Vantage Vue comes packaged in a sturdy box, with the different components securely and safely packaged in two compartments. Just by the feel and look of packaging, you already get a feeling of quality and attention to detail.

The wind vane and anemometer are packaged in the top compartment with the rest of the assembly accessible in the compartment below it.

The plastics have a high-quality look and feel to them, and the included Allen Key helps securely attaching all the components to the sensor assembly a breeze.

Vantage Vue Assembly

As you can see in the picture above, basically all the components and necessary tools to assemble them, are easy to recognise and simple to assemble. A comprehensive user guide is included to help you assemble the outdoor sensor assembly quickly and pain free.  

Also included is a set of brackets and bolts to attach your assembly to a 1 - 1.75 inch pole. You will need a 7/16 inch wrench for fixing the assembly to the pole, but this is almost the only additional tool you need for the sensor assembly. (Obviously you are responsible for where and how you will install your pole.)

Follow the rest of the steps laid out in the manual, but make sure your sensor array is pointing in the right direction, depending on which hemisphere you find yourself in. (The solar panel should face south in the Northern Hemisphere, and north in the Southern Hemisphere.) Your wind sensor is calibrated for a southward facing panel, so make sure you make the necessary adjustment on your console if you live in the Southern Hemisphere.

Setting up your inside display console takes a bit longer. After installing the batteries and AC power adapter, you will hear 3 consecutive beeps, telling you the unit is switched on and ready to be set up.

Once again, the instruction manual makes the setup process easy for you by taking you through the whole procedure step-by-step. Make sure you follow all the steps, as this will make sure your weather station function correctly and accurately.

Take specific care to correctly set up your longitude and latitude location, height above sea level, as well as the month the rainy season in your region normally starts. Do this correctly and you will ensure your weather station functions correctly for your location.

Follow the other steps in the setup as well. After you finished setting up your console, simple press and hold the "Done" button, and that's it. Your basic setup is done.

For an advanced weather station, this a very straight-forward and hassle-free setup. (I would judge the setup time and complexity to be no longer than that of my Ambient Weather WS-2902A Osprey.)

You can find additional information and pricing on the Davis Instruments 6250 Vantage Vue here.

​Performance, Quality And Accuracy

The Sensor Array

After correctly installing and setting up both your sensor array and display console, you should start receiving data within a minute. I recommend leaving it for a couple of days to "settle in" while observing the measurements to get a feel for all the data and where it is displayed on your console.

Before getting into specific detail, there is one conclusion made by many other Vantage Vue owners, which I can very definitively confirm: The Davis Instruments 6250 Vantage Vue is one very serious high-end weather station. You are going to have to look very long and hard to find a more accurate and reliable system at this price point.

Vantage Vue Sensor Array

It comes with a comprehensive set of outdoor sensors, all of which are displayed and frequently updated on the display console. Compared to other weather stations that get sensor updates with intervals of between 15 seconds to a minute on average (depending on your weather device), the Vantage Vue sensor array sends sensor updates with intervals as short as 2.5 seconds (depending on the sensor), making it lightning quick and easy to monitor measurements in "real time".  

Apart from the accurate measurements and very frequent sensor data updates, another standout feature, is the maximum wireless distance capability of the Vantage Vue. The sensor array and display console can be set up to 1000 feet (300 meters) apart. This is really impressive indeed, especially if you take into consideration most wireless weather station have a maximum range of around 300 feet (91 meters).

The 5-in-1 outdoor sensor array covers all the important weather variables that are necessary for accurate and comprehensive measurement and forecasting. (Yes, you get weather stations with more sensors included, which are often heavily promoted. These are optional sensors however that won't really add any substantial value to your ability to accurately monitor and forecast the weather conditions.)  

Here is a summary of the features and advantages of the sensor array:

  • Quick & Easy Installation
  • Temperature Measurement 
  • Barometric Pressure Measurement
  • Rainfall Measurement
  • Wind Speed Measurement
  • Wind Direction Measurement
  • Transmitting Distance Of Up To 1000 feet (300 meters)
  • Highly Accurate Measurements
  • High-Quality And Durable Built
  • Solar Powered
  • Very Short Intervals Between Sending Of Data (Depending On Sensor)

Here is a summary of some of the disadvantages of the sensor array:

  • Sensors Cannot Be Placed Individually (All Forms Part Of One Unit)
  • Perceived Lack Of Full Sensor Array (Some Cheaper Stations offer More Sensors) 
  • Inability To Add Additional Sensors

The Display Console

The display console draws a mixed reaction. First of all, it is a rugged and well-constructed unit that looks and feels like it can withstand some rough treatment.

The LCD mono screen is clear with a backlit display and "glow-in-the-dark" buttons to help you operate the unit during low-light conditions.

Davis Vantage Vue Display Console

The data is also displayed in a logical fashion, and serious weather enthusiasts will have no problem quickly glancing at the display and get all the information they are looking for.

Essentially all the weather data measured is displayed simultaneously on the unit, so you can find all the important weather information you are looking for without having to go through extra menus or pressing any additional buttons.

A graph showing weather trends for different variables (like temperature, rainfall and barometric) are also displayed at the bottom of the screen. This graph is programmable, so you can set the variable which trend you want to follow.    

But its not all good news...

As well-build and logically laid-out as the display is, it has a very dated looking display.

The Display Console looks very outdated. This is especially evident when unboxing the weather station and viewing it next to the much more modern looking sensor array. Viewing it alongside display consoles of weather stations more than half its price make this outdated look even more obvious.

I may be a bit critical here, but for a high-end weather station at this price point, you really deserve much better, 

A HD colour display really would have made the world of difference without adding to the cost of the station. Using colour will also help to highlight and distinguish between the many different variables on the display much more clearly. Which brings me to the second drawback of the display.

As already mentioned, the display console shows almost all the data it measures on the screen. Although logically laid-out, the sheer amount of information can be overwhelming for the new user, or inhibiting if you quickly want to vue a particular piece of data.

A colour display will go a long way towards improving the readability of the display and make the display as a whole look much more organized. The cost of high-quality HD displays have dropped dramatically in price over recent years, so this really should not have an impact on a premium weather station in this price bracket.

I did some research, and it has been pointed out that this display console was designed more than 20 years ago. I have no evidence to back up this claim, but judging from the looks of the display, this claim may not be far off. "Come on Davis Instruments, give us a display worthy of the quality and high standard of the rest of your weather station."

Here is a summary of the features and advantages of the sensor array:

  • Solid Build Quality
  • Clear Display With Logically Laid-Out Buttons For Quick & Easy Access
  • Backlit Screen and "Glow-In-The-Dark" Buttons For Low Light Operation 
  • Temperature Display (Inside & Outside)
  • Barometric Pressure Display (Inside & Outside)
  • Rainfall Measurement Display (Outside)
  • Wind Speed Display (Inside & Outside)
  • Wind Direction Indicator (Inside & Outside)
  • Humidity Display (Inside & Outside)
  • Weather Trend Graphic Display
  • AC Adapter
  • Battery Backup
  • Forecasting Icons (For Changes in Weather Conditions Over The Next 12 Hours)
  • Date & Time Display
  • Multiple Alarms For Various Weather Events
  • Included Kickstand Or Foldout Legs
  • Sunrise & Sunset Display
  • Moon Phase Display
  • Ability To Change Between Empirical And Metric Display 

Here is a summary of some of the disadvantages of the sensor array:

  • Visibly Outdated Display
  • No Built-In Internet Connectivity
  • WiFi Not Standard

Wireless Connection Setup (Optional)

Unfortunately, this is the one area where the Vantage Vue falls short. In an era where internet connectivity is a given on all modern electronic devices, the fact that this feature doesn't come standard on this premium weather station is quite disappointing.

WeatherlinIP

You can connect the Vantage Vue to the Internet, including its own app and website or a third party service like Weather Underground. You need to purchase the WeatherlinkIP Data Logger however, a seperate and rather costly piece of hardware in order to do so.

This criticism is not aimed to put you off from what is otherwise a top-of-the-line device that is in a league of its own in almost every other way. It is just an important fact you should be aware of before you make any kind of decision.

This will also help to bypass the shortcomings of the display, by viewing all your data in detail and in real-time on your laptop or mobile device.

You can find additional information and pricing on the Davis Instruments 6250 Vantage Vue here. 

Conclusion

So, this leaves you with probably the most important question. Is the Davis Instruments 6250 Vantage Vue worth the high price tag?

In a nutshell the answer is yes, without a doubt. Its unparalleled accuracy when it comes to data measuring and forecasting, as well as build-quality and reliability, makes it more than worth the prize.

Yes, the outdated display console and lack of built-in internet connectivity are drawbacks, but not enough to disqualify it as the best choice for a premium weather station.

(In all fairness, there are ways of working around the problem. Yes, it will cost you more and take more time to set up. However, if you are serious and passionate enough to consider a home weather station in this class, going the extra mile will not be too much of an issue)

For more information and pricing on the Davis Instruments 6250 Vantage Vue, simply follow this link.

Feel free to leave me any comments, questions or suggestions, and I will get back to you as soon as possible.

Remember to join my  Mailing List  to be informed whenever a new article is released, and share new developments and helpful hints & tips.

Until next time, keep your eye on the weather!

Wessel


Wessel Wessels
 

Lifelong weather enthusiast. Interest in all things weather-related, and how global climate and local weather interact. Home weather station owner for almost 2 decades, but still learning and expanding my knowledge every day. Keen on sharing my knowledge and get more people involved and interest in both their local weather and how it interacts with climate on a global scale. Love sharing my knowledge on home weather stations, how they work and the many ways you can use them to your advantage. All in all, just a bit of weather nerd.

Click Here to Leave a Comment Below 1 comments
Installing & Reviewing The Ambient Weather WS-2902A Weather Station - February 22, 2019

[…] Somewhere in the future, I may look at adding the Davis Vantage Pro to get some of the most accurate and consistent readings available on the market. Before even considering it, however, it needs to be updated with modern color display console and included WiFi and Internet integration as standard. You can read my impressions of the Davis Vantage Pro here. […]

Reply

Leave a Reply: