A new feature that has been added to the DC 40 is the option of putting a "password" protection PIN feature on your collars.
The Astro uses 50 different ID codes to differentiate between collars. This makes it pretty easy for other folks to figure out what frequency your dogs are on, and anyone can track your dogs once they figure out your frequency by simple number elimination.
While I want the folks that I am hunting with to be able to track my dogs, I really don't want just anyone to be able to locate my dogs without my permission.
The new "Collar Lock" feature allows you the option of protecting your dogs from other people. You select a 4 digit code that the hand held will require a new user to enter before it will allow them to track your GPS collar.
"Collar Lock" is a pull down selection that you can set on your collar if you want it. It is not required to use the DC 40, and it is easy to reset if you want to change it or stop using it.
Collar Lock is controlled via the Wireless USB feature on the Astro. You must be within 1 to 2 feet of the collar to set it and remove it. You can enter the PIN number at any distance from the collar that you are able to receive the signal. Once you have entered the PIN, you will not have to re-enter it.
This is an interesting feature that I really didn't see coming on the Astro and I think that folks are going to like having the option. This feature will also come in real handy for the competition / field trial markets that do not want folks to be able to track dogs while they are in contention.
Collar Locked systems will allow you to locate a lost dog after the competition is ended. The Judge can give the PIN number to the handler after the dog is finished and he can start tracking.
The "Collar Lock" feature is only available in the DC 40 collar, but users with older 220 Astro hand held can upgrade their software and get this feature by adding a DC 40 collar to their system.