Join Date: Apr 2008
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Tadds, I did a search some time ago for my own unity. I red Practical Sailor review on several unities, and found Furuno and Raymarine, by far, the best ones. In fact, I went to 3 different boatshows and had the opportunity to see it operating demo mode, and did "click" all the buttons, for JRC, Garmin, Furuno and Raymarine. I concluded that all of them has same basic functions, and some chart overlay. I could not compare the real stuff, like target discrimination, but I found Raymarine pretty straight forward compared to the others. Menus, "clicks", pages, etc .. were very intuitive to me, taking a 5 min to get used to the unity. I got the E80 screen, with 2KW radar antena, and use it for 2 years now. Chart overlay was my major requeriment, but confess I use it rarely, as the screen become too overloaded with information making hard to tell things. I found the radar/chart side-by-side screen much more controlable and far easier to see. Marpa is also very usefull (I have gyro info on net), but could live without a target tracking. Alarms is a must, and use it so frequently that I can't imagine how could I live without that before. Another point of choice was the extensive dealers support. I installed a Furuno at a friend's boat (he's happy with the radar anyway), but it was a nightmare to contact support services for cabling, extension and options, that we decided to install it in a different location without accessories. The unity (B&W screen) has very crispy discrimination, good size (7") and function very well, but I missed the easy of use, as needed to go over the manual o couple of times to remind me some functions. In the other hand, Raymarine provide a full web support, that works 90%+ of times you need them.
Last edited by negrini; 06-10-2008 at 12:50 PM.