I have been digging into what actual
functionality you get from an MFD when using a single vendor package. For Raymarine products it has been illuminating - and, unfortunately, disappointing.
Clearly the new C and E series MFD's are mainly aimed at powerboat users. The fully supported waypoint navigation is of very limited use to a sailboat. The key functions for sailing are the +10 +1 -1 -10 heading adjustments, both in compass and windvane mode. These do not appear to be available on the MFD at all. Neither, apparently, does the ability to enter and exit either compass or windvane mode and set heading. This is addressed in section 9.1 of this manual
25 meg download.
This is all a little strange. These functions are already available on a simple cabled remote so there is clearly a demand for remote heading adjustments. Replicating the remote's functionality on the MFD would appear to be a pretty simple task.
So they 'talk' to one another but they certainly don't appear to make good use of that fact. I'm guessing that alternative MFD's will be able to display Raymarine data as effectively as the Raymarine MFD via NMEA.
Interestingly where this leaves me is that there appears to be little functional advantage in sticking to a single vendor for instrumentation so I might be able to go with that broadband radar after all......
Please let me know if I am missing something here.