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Now available: Precision Planting’s new 20/20 monitor, a single-meter multi-hybrid planter option and a downforce system for air seeders. Plus, test-drive tech at the new Precision Technology Institute in Pontiac, Ill.

Jill Loehr, Associate Editor, Prairie Farmer

January 22, 2018

4 Min Read
INFORMATION AT YOUR FINGERTIPS: The new 20/20 monitor tracks population, singulation, downforce and more at a higher resolution than ever before. When partnered with the new SmartFirmer, the 20/20 will track in-furrow organic matter, residue, moisture and temperature levels.

Precision Planting revealed three new products and a new research facility during its Winter Conference last week in Tremont, Ill. Farmers now have access to the new 20/20 monitor, mSet for multi-hybrid planting and SeederForce for air seeders. Want to test-drive one of Precision Planting’s new products? Now you can at the Precision Technology Institute, a research and trial facility near Pontiac, Ill.

New product breakdown
“You make a different decision with the right instrument,” says Brad Arnold, general manager for Precision Planting. “That’s what we want to do. We want to look at every task a farmer performs and point a flashlight on it with accurate measurement.”

During planting season, accurate measurement starts with the monitor.

Precision Planting launched the 20/20 SeedSense monitor system 10 years ago, and the new version improves flexibility and visuals. It offers a real-time look at population, downforce, liquid application, multi-hybrid planting and high-speed planting, with clear side-by-side views, and collects spatially accurate yield data.

Justin McMenamy, engineer at Precision Planting, says 10-inch screens are available, and the company is beta-testing 16-inch screens. “That’s the biggest glass there is,” he adds.

Morton, Ill., farmer and Precision Planting dealer Scott Burroughs is pumped about the new 20/20 monitor’s setup. “The resolution will be similar to an iPad — it’s that intense,” he says. “We need a lot of information, in a crisp, clear way. Now, we can split the screens and divide it on two separate monitors. I can watch populations over here and downforce over here.”

For the air seeder market, Precision Planting brings SeederForce, a new automated, downforce control system that is compatible with John Deere 60 and 90 series air seeders. It measures weight on the gauge wheels and compares that to the target set on the 20/20 display. SeederForce then automatically changes the hydraulic pressure on the rockshaft cylinder to increase or decrease the row unit downforce as needed. Precision Planting claims that will result in consistent seeding depth and more uniform crop emergence.


PLACEMENT PERFECTION: “Hybrid placement is key,” says Jason Webster, commercial agronomist. “Now you can actually do it.” The new mSet uses a single meter with a dual-compartment hopper to plant two hybrids in the same field, based on preset prescriptions.

For farmers ready to dive into multi-hybrid planting, the new mSet system uses a single meter with a dual-compartment hopper to plant two hybrids in the same field. From a split hopper, the seed selector fills the vSet meter with a small pool of one hybrid, then switches and fills the meter with the second hybrid when a sensor tells the seed selector to add more seed. mSet is compatible with seed tubes, including SpeedTube. For farmers who already have vSet and vDrive, mSet will cost $690 per row unit.

Need help identifying management zones before trying multi-hybrid planting? mSet dovetails with Precision Planting’s SmartFirmer, an in-furrow sensor that maps organic matter, residue, soil moisture and temperature levels. Looking at organic matter is the best way to place the right genetics in the right place, says Jason Webster, commercial agronomist.

SmartFirmer is available for the 2018 planting season for farmers who have the new 20/20 monitor or the 20/20 SeedSense single row module system (SRM) for $475 per row unit; it requires a quick-attach Keeton seed firmer bracket.

Try before you buy
Not sure about the leap to multi-hybrid planting? Want to try the new 20/20 monitor, in a real field, before upgrading your system? Opening this spring, Webster says the new 200-acre Precision Technology Institute in Pontiac will be an agronomic research site and will provide farmers a “sandbox environment” for hands-on experience.

“Farmers can run a high-speed planter and feel what it’s like to plant at 12 mph, and then walk right over to a test plot that shows the end result,” he explains. The rest of the facility will be dedicated to research plots, like high-yield, tillage, high-speed planting, closing-system or fertility trials comparing dry banded or liquid fertilizers. More details on events and tours will be announced in the spring.

The Precision Technology Institute is located on Interstate 55, about 80 miles south of Chicago, 30 miles north of Bloomington and 70 miles from the Champaign-Urbana area. For more information about Precision Planting products, contact your local Premier Dealer, or visit

About the Author(s)

Jill Loehr

Associate Editor, Prairie Farmer, Loehr

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