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Go Back   SailNet Community > On Board > Gear & Maintenance
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  #1  
Old 05-24-2007
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What GPS?

Looking to purchase a GPS unit for my boat, leaning towards Garmin's GPS 378 or 478, any suggestions, comments? Should i lean towards something else?
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Old 05-24-2007
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Hello,

Garmin makes excellent units. However, IMHO, they are overpriced and underspeced. I think that Lowrance is a better deal. The 378 and 478 could
be good if you wanted something for your boat AND car, otherwise it
doesn't make sense.

If you want a combo unit, checkout the Lowrance Iway600C.
For boat use only, the LMS522 is a great unit with SONAR.

Good luck,
Barry
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Old 05-24-2007
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Everlong, pretty much any GPS will tell you where you are (or, where you might be) but you will probably find the software and interface on some units makes sense for you, while others just don't. Also, make sure it has an audible alarm and one that you can hear--if you plan to work with that.

If you are using it for charts/plotting, check into the costs of charts and updates as well.
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Old 05-24-2007
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Thanks for all the inputs for now, i just realized that i would also need a sounder option for it, and XM radio, and XM weather(if it is any good-your opinion). I already have XM in my car, and a Garmin GPS. Another question, would my Marine GPS/XM radio receiver accept same XM Radio ID as the one in my car? or would i have to purchase subscription for my Marine GPS separately? Just curious if that XM ID would work, anyone?

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Old 05-25-2007
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You start putting all that stuff in one box, and if any part of it needs repair you're going to have NOTHING while it is out. And a very limited choice of equipment.

XM radios all take separate subscriptions and codes, but they give you a discount after your first one.
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Old 05-25-2007
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Everlong-

I'd go with the Garmin 440, since you don't need to use the GPS in your car. The 440 has the coastal USA charts built into the unit and can accept the XM weather radio data if you get the XM module for it. The 440s has a sounder as well.

IIRC, the XM Weather module will allow you to listen to XM radio...but you'd have to double check to be sure.

This makes far more sense than getting the 478, since you don't need the portability and the 440 has a much larger screen.
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Old 05-25-2007
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just bought the 440. haven't installed it, but from my research, it's among the best Garmin values. if that's not mutually exclusive.
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I have the Garmin 176C, the predecessor to the latest versions. It has worked well for me, but I find the screen to be a bit small. The one time I was really lost, in the dark, I discovered that when I zoomed in to get the level of detail I needed, I didn't have a broad enough perspective to determine which way I needed to go because of the screen size. To aggravate things, I had left my paper charts at home. If you don't need the ability to use it in the car, my advice would be to get the biggest screen you can afford/fit on the boat. A friend has the Raymarine GPS with the satellite weather overlay on the chartplotter. Way cool.
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Old 05-26-2007
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so i have purchased a Lowrance 522c model, extremely happy with it, 5" screen, 480x480...
also purchased charts for Great Lakes, from Navionics... we will see how all of that does .... next weekend im getting my first sailboat! and will be sailing from Sarnia/port Huron to Lion's Head (close to owen sound) not too bad of a trip for first time eh?
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Old 05-26-2007
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Everlong, did you buy a black boat by any chance. Some sailors were taking posession of a boat, a Baba I think right across the dock from my boat today. They were planing on making the trip you described.
By the way it is much quicker to just sail right to Toby, takes 24 hours and you are there. I only went the port hoping route once and hated it. Took forever.

Gary
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