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post #4 of Old 06-22-2010
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What do you plan on doing with the system TODAY, and what do you think you will do TOMORROW?

It is MUCH easier to connect devices with NMEA 2000 than with NMEA 0183. However, if you don't plan on connecting things, then it doesn't really matter.

For example, a common use of networking is to send GPS data to a DSC VHF. The only problem is that very few VHF radios use NMEA 2000. If you have or plan on buying a DSC VHF with NMEA 2000, then by all means get the NMEA 2000 plotter too.

Do you plan on display Speed Through Water (STW) from a paddle wheel or some other type of transducer on the plotter screen? NMEA 2000 would make that much easier. How about wind speed and direction? Same thing. What about autopilot?

If you plan on having a dedicated display for each data source (speed, depth, wind, autopilot, etc.) then nmea 2000 is probably overkill.

Lastly, NMEA 2000 specifies how the data is sent, it doesn't mean that all devices can use all messages. I have a NMEA 2000 network with a Lowrance LMS 337 CDF plotter. I have a AIS receiver. My plotter does not understand the AIS messages, so I can't display the AIS information on my plotter.


Barry Lenoble
Deep Blue C, 2002 C&C 110
Mt. Sinai, NY

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