Davis Classic Stations – Overview

Introduction

These weather stations represent the previous generation of Davis weather stations and are now – other than the Wizard III station – completely superseded by the Vantage Vue and Vantage Pro 2 stations.

Wizard stations can measure wind speed and direction plus inside and outside temperatures and, optionally, rainfall. The Wizard station is cabled only (ie there is no wireless option) and no other sensors are available. The Wizard model can be linked to a PC with its own version of the Davis Weatherlink data logging package. (Read more about Weatherlink.)

If you are considering a WMII type model, please be sure to read the WMII/Wizard vs Vantage Pro section below.

Weather Wizard III stations

The key features of the Wizard III station include:

  • Accurate, reliable monitoring of basic weather parameters;
  • Derived values (eg wind chill temperature) calculated automatically;
  • Display units can be set independently for each parameter category;
  • Highs and lows values recorded automatically;
  • Straightforward DIY installation with extensive range of installation accessories available;
  • Easy linkage to PCs with the Weatherlink option;
  • Comprehensive instruction manual supplied;
  • Two year Davis warranty and full after-sales support;

The Weather Wizard III stations is available in two versions: a basic ‘standard’ version and a version which also includes a rain gauge, termed ‘CSM’. An extensive range of accessories, including extension cables is also available and summarised on a separate page.

The Wizard III console display contains a graphical wind rose to the left to designate wind direction with a choice of either wind speed or the direction in figures displayed within the rose. The right of the display shows the readout for whichever single parameter has been selected by pressing one of the buttons below, ie temperature, rainfall etc.

Wizard Standard (7425)

7425rtWizard stations are supplied with the most basic Davis console and are able to measure inside and outside temperature; wind speed and direction; and, optionally, rainfall.  The rain gauge is not included with the Wizard standard model. Please note that, other than rain gauge, no further sensors can be added to Wizard models. Users requiring the option of measuring pressure and/or humidity must specify a Vantage Pro 2 or Vue model.

Wizard CSM (7425CSM)

7425cswireThe CSM package version is identical to the standard Wizard pack but also contains the optional rain gauge at a favourable all-in price compared to buying the rain gauge separately.

Wizard III vs Vantage Vue and Pro 2 weather station ranges

When considering a Wizard III (WWIII)model please bear in mind the differences from the Vantage Pro 2 (VP2) and Vue models, to avoid making a decision that may ultimately disappoint in terms of limited expansion capabilities or prove to have been a false economy. Key differences include:

  • The Wizard console display is much smaller and less impressive than the VP display and generates more limited data. For example there is no forecast generated by the Wizard console;
  • WWIII models can only have cabled connections between console and outside sensors. There are no wireless models in the WMII range;
  • Solar radiation and UV sensors cannot be fitted to WWIII models;
  • The only sensor expansion option on the WWIII station is the addition of a rain gauge to the standard 7425 model;
  • While WWIII  packages do provide a complete basic weather station, they often benefit from additional accessories to improve accuracy (for example, a radiation shield to protect the temperature sensor from heating in direct sunlight is available as an optional extra) and to assist in mounting their sensors conveniently and robustly. In contrast the VP2 and Vue stations are fully complete in themselves; they include a radiation shield as standard, and rarely demand further installation accessories other than as a pure convenience;
  • Installation of WMII/Wizard sensors, while still straightforward, is somewhat more of a task than with the VP range because of the extra cables, junction box etc involved;
  • The WWIII Weatherlink data logger is of substantially older design than the VP logger. It is much slower to transfer data, stores fewer logged readings and is slightly less robust in operation;
    One minor point in favour of the WWIII range is that the rain gauge and temperature sensor are independent items and can therefore be mounted in separate places (cable lengths permitting). In the VP2 models, the temperature etc sensors and rain gauge are combined into the single ISS unit;
  • NB Wizard sensors measure weather data to approximately the same accuracy as the VP models, with the exception of poorer accuracy on humidity readings;

Overall, the WWIII model can offer very cost-effective and reliable weather monitoring if the parameters to be measured are basic (eg perhaps just temperature and/or wind speed & direction) and the monitoring requirement is very unlikely to increase in scope at a later date. These models also have a low entry price and offer the option of allowing accessories to be added progressively as the budget may allow.

However, in general, we recommend the Vantage Pro 2 and Vue models over the older design of the WWIII stations, because of the many advantages of the Vantage range. It is important to do a careful price comparison between VP and WWIII ranges – for more fully-specified systems it is not uncommon for the cost of a WWIII system to total more than that of a comparable Vue system.