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Planting Product Manager Explains Key Features of John Deere's Recent Ag Tech and Equipment Launch

Planting Product Manager Explains Key Features of John Deere's Recent Ag Tech and Equipment Launch

10 Jul 2024 Author: Tony Kramer Read time: 5 min

I think we can all agree that it’s incredibly satisfying to see our feedback come to life. It means someone cares and is listening. In this case, that someone is John Deere. At this year’s Commodity Classic, John Deere Go-To-Market Managers showcased the latest equipment, technology, and other releases informed by farmers’ feedback and designed to improve farm operations. After thorough discussions with John Deere’s experts, we defined the popular equipment and technology releases — the Precisions Ag Essentials Kit, 9RX tractor, C-Series Air Seeder Cart and X9 combine — and their most important features that every farmer would be wise to understand.

More Precision Ag Essentials Kit License Options

The Precision Ag Essentials Kit includes updates to farmers’ connectivity hardware, including a large 5G Display, StarFire™ 7000 Receiver with SF-RTK that increases GPS accuracy to 2.5 cm, and the choice between the M or R JDLink™ Modems.

When farmers update their in-the-cab displays, modem, and receiver, they can access John Deere Operations Center's latest software application. Among its key features are new “pay-as-go" licensing options. Before this year, Precision Ag Essentials Kits were only offered as a traditional equipment and technology investment, with many farmers reporting they experienced a return on their Precision Ag Essentials Kit investment several years after they purchase the in-the-cab technology.

This year, the Precision Ag Essentials Kit will be offered as a yearly connectivity subscription after the hardware purchase. Due to John Deere’s recent partnership to link its farm equipment up with SpaceX satellites, farmers in remote areas will not experience issues connecting their machines. That means we’re progressing greatly in overcoming the geographical barriers to precision technology adoption.

The precision essentials kits come in two different levels.

Basic License: *Includes hardware and a one-year license with the following software

  • AutoTrac™
  • Section Control
  • RowSense™

Advanced License: *Includes hardware and one-year Essentials License plus a G5 Advanced Package

  • AutoTrac™ Implement Guidance
  • AutoTrac™ Turn Automation
  • AutoPath™
  • In-Field Data Sharing
  • Machine Sync
  • SF-RTK

The yearly cost decreases the initial investment and allows each year’s profits to offset the cost for farmers. Changes made to the Precision Ag Essentials Program equal more access for farmers to connect machines and onboard machine control automation to experience productivity gains.

9RX's High Horsepower Tractors without Increased Emissions

John Deere launched three new 9RX tractors that are autonomy-ready with plug-and-play components. Every 9RX model’s cab has more space for improved visibility and a suspension system with three degrees of freedom and four shocks for enhanced stability and comfort. Outside of the cab, 9RX’s track system is taller to deliver 830 horsepower, with an idler added to spread its weight and maintain a consistent footprint across the field. Each 9RX tractor has a JD18 engine. Its key feature? No Diesel Exhaust Fluid (DEF).

The 9RX tractor’s JD18 engine uses Exhaust Gas Recirculation (EGR), requiring no diesel particulate filters or DEF, resulting in reduced emissions without losing horsepower. Altogether this gives the new 9RX improved horsepower and emissions capabilities without added hassle or costs.

C-Series Air Seeder Carts' More 'AccuRate™’ Improvements

John Deere's C-Series developed two models, "L" for "leading" and "T" for "trailing," so farmers could choose their no-till seeding preference. The L and T air seeder models range in size from 350 to 650 bushels. (The most prominent model with an 850 capacity only comes as a trailing air cart.) Farmers say these C-Series Air Carts updated naming conventions are easier to understand for their operators - and the ease of use is perhaps its key feature.

In previous planting seasons, operators would have to lug seed bags to manually weigh seeds before crawling under the air seeder cart to calibrate the system. Now, operators with a C-Series air seeder pour seeds directly into the EZCal system. With built-in scales, the EZCaL system weighs and calibrates the air seeder with a simple button push. Throughout the day, operators can recalibrate the system in the cab, which saves walking steps and improves accuracy by 75%.

C-Series air cart operators can set their seeder's speed and volume during planting with their carts' stainless steel AccuRate™ control meter. A wear-resistant system that stands up to seed treatments and abrasive granular fertilizers, the AccuRate system records seeding rate data so operators can view the info in their cabs' displays. Farmers and operators can increase their seeding speed at the right volume for the field's prescription with these air seeders' exclusive planting technology. These solutions help farmers plant in shorter windows of opportunity without losing accuracy, even with a less experienced operator. 

S7 Combine's Groundspeed Automation Increases Productivity

The S7 combine includes a cab similar to the X9 with comfort and visibility improvements and a similar boost in horsepower. Outside the cab, the S7 includes stereo cameras to sense crop height and density for better grain handling. The combine uses this information for the brand-new Predictive Groundspeed Automation functionality, which adjusts combined speed based on terrain and crop conditions. However, the key feature of S7’s combine technology is its Harvest Settings Automation.

Harvest Settings Automation can optimize settings for specific crops and soil conditions. This automation, paired with predictive speed capabilities, gives operators the confidence to run the machine at higher speeds. According to field tests, S7’s harvest automation technology can increase harvesting efficiency by up to 70%.

A trusted partner at your regional dealer can talk in more detail about the Precision Ag Essentials Kit, 9RX tractor, C-Series air carts or the S7 combine to help decide if this growing season is the right time to invest in some new green iron. RDO and John Deere team members agree that these solutions will continue to be developed to meet the specific needs of farmers, so there’s likely no shortage of exciting updates to come.

Watch Kramer at John Deere's Commodity Classic.

Tony Kramer

Tony Kramer is the Product Manager of Planting Technology and a Certified Crop Advisor at RDO Equipment Co. He is also the host of the Agriculture Technology podcast. If you have any questions for Tony or would like to be a guest on the podcast, you can find him on X at @RDOTonyK.

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