IntroductionOk so I need to be able to scan, what skills are there and what should I learn when and why? This is just a small post to start this whole topic off.
Fundamentally there are only four skills associated with scanning:
- Astrometric Aquisistion
- Astrometric Pinpointing
- Astrometric Rangefinding
Ok before going through the training stages it worth describing the skills.
Astrometrics (Rank 3, requires Science 3)
The skill at operating long range scanners (probes). The skill allows you to use one additional probe per level. Starting with 4 probes at level 1. This is a vital skill and you should aim to get this to level 4 asap. This frees up all the other skills for you to access and also gives you more probes. Ultimately with 8 probes out you can be scanning two locations simultaneously.
Astrometric Aquisition (Rank 5, requires Astrometrics 3)
Skill at the advanced operation of long range scanners. 10% reduction in the time taken for a scan probe cycle. Starting time is 10 seconds. So how much does the standard deviation really affect me? Well if you are scanning at 4AU resolution and an anomaly to reading a distance of 0.681AU then it could actually be 4.681AU away, so when you reduce your probe range for the next scan there is a change you might miss it altogether. This skill comes third in my list of importance and I would suggest getting this to 4 as soon as range finding has been trained.
Astrometric Pinpointing (Rank 5, requires Astrometrics 4)
Greater accuracy in hunting down targets found through scanning. Reduces maximum scan deviation by 10% per level. Starting scan deviation is 100% of the total range that the probe is set to. This is probably the least important of the four skills as it does not affect your capability to find something and therefore should be one of the last skills you train to max. It does however provide you with a huge benefit when either chasing down other capsuleers, trying to find that high value radar site before anyone else or just processing the 20+ sites you have found in w/hole space. SO yes aim to increase it but not before you have focussed on the others.
Astrometric Rangefinding (Rank 8, requires Science 3)
kill at the advanced operation of long range scanners. 10% increase to scan probe strength per level. Training this up is vital, your going to need all the scan strength you can get so you should target training this up as soon as possible.
You are going to undertake the process of learning the scanning skills in several stages. Why? Well first and foremost the skills are ranked reasonably high and to train these all the way through is gonna be boring, and furthermore these skills are not the only ones you are going to need whatever active you are going to be doing so expect to break these up into stages. This is going to get a lot more focus in Dominion where there will be specific scanning / exploration career paths so will be interesting to see how close I am.
This is very much a straight out of the box capability. You have just started playing EVE, get the skill book and jump into a frigate and your away. The draw backs here are that some of the higher value, harder to find anomalies are going to be out of your reach in finding (locking down to 100% and warpable). So you are going to want to get up to beginner asap.
This is where you will start to find your getting good at scanning, you have worked out your system for managing the probes and have found a pattern for scanning. This level is good for exploration and will give you a good setup for finding anomalies. You will probably plateau here for a little while as you will now need some of the other supporting skills (hacking and archeology).
Your now getting into the professional scanning, fleet support type of role here. Your skills base is now getting to the point where your ship scanning skills are at a speed where you can scan down pilots quickly and effectively and are useful with fleet scouting and recon roles.
World is your oyster and it is time to train up on something else. Congrats on getting here.