Results 1 to 18 of 18

Thread: Offshore Electronics - Radar/Chartplotter - Opinion wanted

  1. #1
    Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2016
    Location
    Alaska
    Posts
    29

    Default Offshore Electronics - Radar/Chartplotter - Opinion wanted

    Hi Everyone,

    I have a 30' North River Offshore that has the original Ray marine C-80 Chartplotter/Sonar/Radar on it. This season, I've began having issues with the radar, which is a result of the radome not functioning properly, despite a half a dozen attempts to fix it.

    Anyways, I don't want to be without a radar next season, so I am in a delima as to how I should proceed. I've been researching new systems and now i've got a few different scenarios I can go with.

    1. I can buy a new raymarine digital radome and the networking switch and replace the one I have. I'll be in it roughly $1500 and still have a 2005 chartplotter system.

    2. I can add a cheaper end radar/chartplotter/sonar system and add some redundancy and keep my current GPS/Sonar in place. This will run me between $2k and $3.5k for an entry level radar/chartplotter/sonar.

    3. I can go for the gusto and add a mid-level Chartplotter/Radar/Sonar that has all the goodies and features one could want with the boat I have. This will set me back between $5k and $8K. The screen would be too big to keep both unit, so I would just discard the old system in it's entirety.

    What have others done and has anyone upgraded their older 2005-ish system to a new system and were the new features really worth it?

    Opinions are appreciated and your thoughts on the new systems you went with would be appreciated.

    Thanks!

  2. #2

    Default

    Your 12 year old system is not worth keeping, IMO.

    Just wait for the latest and greatest to come out next year and when they start dumping this years stuff scoop it up at a discount, get rid of your current setup and you will be good to go. There is little doubt that in 12 years things have improved greatly on all fronts . . . .

  3. #3
    Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2016
    Location
    Alaska
    Posts
    29

    Default

    So you are saying go with the new higher end system with the features? I'm not a big fan of the entry level systems. I've looked at the Garmin and I just don't like the way their displays work in the radar overlay system. I like the Raymarine and the Furuno. The new doplar features are cool. There is no question that the abilities and features are far greater than what I have now. That said, I really like the system I have when it works. It is the reliability that sends me down this road.

  4. #4

    Default

    Not necessarily a higher end system, even the mid-level systems of today are very good. If you can fix yours for $1,500 and be happy with it, maybe that is way to go for you. The new gear has much nicer displays, faster refresh rates, you can interface with other things like engines, phones, tablets and get backup that way, the maps are up to date, the fish finders are much better and presumably the radar is that much better as well. Personally, I like a clean helm, so having some mix of old stuff and new stuff is just too much clutter. Plus, unless you enjoy fooling with your boat (as opposed to using your boat), the hassle of half-measures and high maintenance is not worth it to me. So, were it me, I would think to myself that I got good use out of the 2005 gear and it time for a clean sweep and upgrade. YMMV. Not to mention that my eyes are more and more appreciative of bright, crisp, large displays . . .

  5. #5

    Default

    FYI, my wife is not necessarily on board with my thinking . . .

  6. #6
    Member DRIFTER_016's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Yellowknife, NWT
    Posts
    3,303

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by stroganof View Post
    FYI, my wife is not necessarily on board with my thinking . . .
    Probably wants the $$$$ to buy shoes!!!!

  7. #7
    Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2016
    Location
    Alaska
    Posts
    29

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by stroganof View Post
    Not necessarily a higher end system, even the mid-level systems of today are very good. If you can fix yours for $1,500 and be happy with it, maybe that is way to go for you. The new gear has much nicer displays, faster refresh rates, you can interface with other things like engines, phones, tablets and get backup that way, the maps are up to date, the fish finders are much better and presumably the radar is that much better as well. Personally, I like a clean helm, so having some mix of old stuff and new stuff is just too much clutter. Plus, unless you enjoy fooling with your boat (as opposed to using your boat), the hassle of half-measures and high maintenance is not worth it to me. So, were it me, I would think to myself that I got good use out of the 2005 gear and it time for a clean sweep and upgrade. YMMV. Not to mention that my eyes are more and more appreciative of bright, crisp, large displays . . .
    I see your point. I am not denying I got good use out of it. I'm half way there with just the radome. Some of the new features are nice, though I don't really care about interfacing with a Ipad or anything else. I just want something that works and is reliable. The new systems would certainly be that with a nice increase in technology.

    My wife is not on board with a full upgrade either.

  8. #8
    Moderator Daveinthebush's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    Valdez, Alaska
    Posts
    4,377

    Default

    I love my Garmin with the radar overlay. You have to go thru the menu to tune it too your needs. When I first got it I was picking up sea gulls sitting on the water and rain totally blocked it out. Played with the settings and now I love it.

    Vietnam - June 70 - Feb. 72
    Cancer from Agent Orange - Aug. 25th 2012
    Cancer Survivor - Dec. 14th 2012

  9. #9
    Member jrogers's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Anchorage
    Posts
    1,529

    Default

    I upgraded my system this summer to the Garmin 7600 series and love it. I bit the bullet and upgraded to Chirp sonar, and this is a noticeable improvement as well. Fortunately my HD 18 radar was compatible, so I left this in place. Garmin's user interface is very intuitive and pretty much instant panning and zooming. Due to the NEMA 200 and other factors, the installation was pretty easy to do except for routing the sonar cables. I was surprised to find that they no longer need an external GPS antenna, and that the internal one works just fine, even in an aluminum boat. I would just get rid of all of your old stuff and start new, if you are planning on keeping your boat for some time.
    2009 Seawolf 31'
    www.seawolfmarine.com
    Fully Loaded

  10. #10

    Default

    I'm in a similar situation, getting a new boat and trying to decide if it's worth taking any goodies off the old one, and it's looking like it's not worth keeping anything. It's nice having a back-up GPS, but that can be your phone these days. This weekend out of Homer I was glad to have radar.

    I'm leaning towards a new set-up, the big displays are expensive though. On the old boat there is a Garmin Echomap74dv (non chirp) I got on clearance that works pretty well (also works great with no external antenna) and is a nice size for me as a chart plotter, but just ok for viewing sonar and charts together, then separate old 7" CRT Furuno Radar which is finicky and 6" Furuno Sounder.

    I like the viewing area I get with separate screens but for a new setup I'm looking at least a 9" single display or 2 7". Radar overlay ability would reduce the need for a separate radar screen. Simrad has a tempting kit with a Go9 Display, 4G Radar, and TotalScan transducer for about $2600, but I haven't looked at them in person yet. I think the Wifi feature showing sonar, etc on a phone or iPad would be nice to get more screen area cheaply or to watch sonar while out on the deck fishing.

  11. #11
    Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2016
    Location
    Alaska
    Posts
    29

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by BQuad View Post
    I'm in a similar situation, getting a new boat and trying to decide if it's worth taking any goodies off the old one, and it's looking like it's not worth keeping anything. It's nice having a back-up GPS, but that can be your phone these days. This weekend out of Homer I was glad to have radar.

    I'm leaning towards a new set-up, the big displays are expensive though. On the old boat there is a Garmin Echomap74dv (non chirp) I got on clearance that works pretty well (also works great with no external antenna) and is a nice size for me as a chart plotter, but just ok for viewing sonar and charts together, then separate old 7" CRT Furuno Radar which is finicky and 6" Furuno Sounder.

    I like the viewing area I get with separate screens but for a new setup I'm looking at least a 9" single display or 2 7". Radar overlay ability would reduce the need for a separate radar screen. Simrad has a tempting kit with a Go9 Display, 4G Radar, and TotalScan transducer for about $2600, but I haven't looked at them in person yet. I think the Wifi feature showing sonar, etc on a phone or iPad would be nice to get more screen area cheaply or to watch sonar while out on the deck fishing.
    I still have not decided the direction I am going. At this point, I think I am going to do away with the whole system and replace it with a new system. I love Garmin, but I haven't been impressed with their multi-function units when compared to the Furuno or Raymarine. I think this is just personal preference. The value Garmin gives is great though, so I'll likely go that route. Need to get somewhere to play with them all in person.

    I think I am going to move the old GPS Chartplotter to the rear of the boat and use it as my second station unit. It is water proof and I can just put it outside and if something happens to it, then ow well. Still have to see how much the funds allow. No plans on getting rid of the boat in the near future, so might as well put a good system on it and enjoy it. My last trip to Homer when the radar wasn't working wasn't fun. I don't want that to happen again.

  12. #12
    Member Akgramps's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Last civilized place on the planet
    Posts
    2,052

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by jrogers View Post
    I upgraded my system this summer to the Garmin 7600 series and love it. I bit the bullet and upgraded to Chirp sonar, and this is a noticeable improvement as well. Fortunately my HD 18 radar was compatible, so I left this in place. Garmin's user interface is very intuitive and pretty much instant panning and zooming. Due to the NEMA 200 and other factors, the installation was pretty easy to do except for routing the sonar cables. I was surprised to find that they no longer need an external GPS antenna, and that the internal one works just fine, even in an aluminum boat. I would just get rid of all of your old stuff and start new, if you are planning on keeping your boat for some time.
    Which transducer are you using? Can you optimize the sonar with one transducer?
    “Nothing worth doing is easy”
    TR

  13. #13
    Member KenaiFly's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Girdwood, AK
    Posts
    49

    Default

    We carry all of those brands at Polar Marine. Each manufacturer does something better than the other. It boils down to how much total screen area you want to display the information you want to see. There are two paths; all-in-one systems or separate but sharing data (not imagery). The other consideration is cost, but it's important to compare apples to apples, and that is a difficult task.

    The features in networked systems are developed primarily through the application. Which vendor offers consistent updates and further features? That older C-series Raymarine system has not had software updates since 2011, as an example. But, the latest OS and user interface from Raymarine is really nice. Garmin has the reputation of being able to operate the device with a mitten on...perceived as extremely easy to use, but all of the latest interfaces are not difficult.

    Last bit...identify which features are important to you and focus on identifying the manufacturer that best delivers those things. Good Luck.
    PolarMarine.net

  14. #14
    Member jrogers's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Anchorage
    Posts
    1,529

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Akgramps View Post
    Which transducer are you using? Can you optimize the sonar with one transducer?

    I have two transducers, a Airmar SS175C-12-MM which is a through hull, narrow beam high frequency chirp and a Garmin GT51M-TM medium frequency wide beam transom mount.

    The idea was to use my existing mount from my old system with the Airmar. This unit is good at reading the bottom, and the Garmin would be good at seeing the fish in the water column. It is nice having both, but not necessary. I would be very happy with just running the Garmin transom mount transducer. It is better at everything than my old, non-chirp $1500 Airmar transducer I had before.
    2009 Seawolf 31'
    www.seawolfmarine.com
    Fully Loaded

  15. #15
    Member Akgramps's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Last civilized place on the planet
    Posts
    2,052

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by jrogers View Post
    I have two transducers, a Airmar SS175C-12-MM which is a through hull, narrow beam high frequency chirp and a Garmin GT51M-TM medium frequency wide beam transom mount.

    The idea was to use my existing mount from my old system with the Airmar. This unit is good at reading the bottom, and the Garmin would be good at seeing the fish in the water column. It is nice having both, but not necessary. I would be very happy with just running the Garmin transom mount transducer. It is better at everything than my old, non-chirp $1500 Airmar transducer I had before.
    This is a great thread....! I have been thinking about a 7608 and was wondering if one transducer would do it all, I was looking at the GT50M-TM based on practical depths for fishing, sound like you are happy with the GT51?
    “Nothing worth doing is easy”
    TR

  16. #16
    Member jrogers's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Anchorage
    Posts
    1,529

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Akgramps View Post
    This is a great thread....! I have been thinking about a 7608 and was wondering if one transducer would do it all, I was looking at the GT50M-TM based on practical depths for fishing, sound like you are happy with the GT51?

    The GT50 is a shallow water sensor, whereas the GT51 is for coastal and offshore fishing, which seems like a better fit for what we do here. I would highly recommend the 7608. If you get the XSV version it has the chirp sonar built into it, and the GT51 will plug right into it.
    Yes, I am happy with the GT51. It will show the bottom fine at 600ft or more and really shows fish like salmon in the water column when trolling.
    2009 Seawolf 31'
    www.seawolfmarine.com
    Fully Loaded

  17. #17
    Member yukonzoo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    whitehorse
    Posts
    79

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by jrogers View Post
    The GT50 is a shallow water sensor, whereas the GT51 is for coastal and offshore fishing, which seems like a better fit for what we do here. I would highly recommend the 7608. If you get the XSV version it has the chirp sonar built into it, and the GT51 will plug right into it.
    Yes, I am happy with the GT51. It will show the bottom fine at 600ft or more and really shows fish like salmon in the water column when trolling.
    I also have the 7608xsv with GT51 ducer ..... after playing with a few settings it shows more then I know what to do with at this point , the bait balls and little sea bass you see streaking up at your herring while trolling is incredible when your coming from an old hummingbird 588c lol

  18. #18
    Member Ronster's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Valdez
    Posts
    682

    Default

    I'm going to be selling a garmin 4210, GSD22, and a Airmar TM260 in the very near future if anyone is looking. I have been having radar issues as well and an upgrade to the fathom won't work with my current setup.

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •