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Go Back   SailNet Community > On Board > Gear & Maintenance
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  #1  
Old 10-02-2003
JIO JIO is offline
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GPS Chartplotters

I am in the market for a color GPS Chartplotter. I intend to mount outside, near the wheel, and am looking at units with screen sizes in the 5 inch to 7 inch range. Practical Sailor did a helpful review of these types of units a few months ago, which identified a few units that appear to meet my needs, such as the Garmin 182C, Standard Horizon 150/170, Simrad cp33 and Furino 1850W. One of the big decisions is what type of chart will be used. Most of the machines use either C Map or Navionics, while Garmin has its own proprietary Blue Charts. Some have told me that the Blue Chart is the best program on the market at this time, and for this reason, stay with the Garmin unit. Looking for thoughts on the units and the software choices listed above, positive or negative.

Thanks. Jon
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Old 10-02-2003
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GPS Chartplotters

Why not look at a raytheon unit. Not sure what the costs are relative to what you listed, but I think the color units they have are very easy to read. The C-Charts seem very good also - most people I know like them.
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Old 10-02-2003
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GPS Chartplotters

Yes, agree C-Map charts / cartridges are nice. If later on you get into pc chartplotting, you can get a card reader for the pc and with either NavPak, MaxSea, or Raytech software can read the C-Map cartridges to get double duty out of them.
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Old 10-02-2003
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GPS Chartplotters

I have a Garmin 2010C below at the navstation and a 2006C above at the helm. They are easy to use, well built and the Blue Chart data is great.
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Old 10-03-2003
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GPS Chartplotters

I have a Garmin 182C. The graphics and controls are great. It is extremely easy to program. I am unfamiliar with any other models, however, for comparison purposes. Good luck.
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Old 10-10-2003
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GPS Chartplotters

I have a Garmin GPS Map 162 and I love it. It shows me exactly where i am on the water and in the world. It shows longitude and latitude as well as speed and date and time. It can record tracks and waypoints. it is relatively inexpensive for a full sized gpsmap unit. Good value. i am looking to buy another if I go to a new boat.
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Old 10-15-2003
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GPS Chartplotters

Been using NavPak for a few years. Excellent software in my opinion as is their customer/tech support, also user group which has plenty of information and a place to swap sea stories or ask questions. http://www.globenav.com/
Best,
Fitzy
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Old 10-28-2003
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GPS Chartplotters

Just got back from a week shakedown cruise. Replaced my Garmin 162 with a Raymarine 530. The 162 is wonderful for its price--monochrome and about 3" screen and only about $400. Good built-in chart and you can download Bluecharts to it, but not much memory in the box, so only a small geographic area can be downloaded at one time.
The 530 is excellent--color, 7", with twice the resolution (in each axis--for a 4x improvement in pixel count) than many comparable units. So the clarity on the screen is wonderful. Couple quirks--no GPS built in, so you need the Raystar 120 or Garmin 17N external GPS (I used the Garmin 17N for about $170 and it does a wonderful job--NMEA interface to the 530 couldn''t be easier).
Another neat feature is that a similar Raymarine radar can also be hooked to the system, which I did. The radar display sits at the nav station. One wire goes from the radar to the 530 at the helm. On the 530, I can switch from chartplotter to radar (a mirror of the nav station), or even display both at once on a split-screen. Dynamite to see both the chart and the radar display at the same time. OTOH the chartplotter has all the radar controls as well, so it can get complex. I have the 530 interfaced to the autopilot, also by NMEA interface, and that works very well also.
Comparing the Garmin to the Raymarine, some things are easier on one, some on the other. Pays your money and takes your choice. Both are good. Much easier, IMHO, if you get off course in a route to hit one button to reset the XTE on the 530 than to try to reset the Garmin. The Garmin is better at positioning the "boat" symbol at the bottom of the display, rather than at the middle. The 530 has a quirk that power off means than it reverts to "north up" rather than "course up"--luckily I really prefer north-up from years of looking at paper charts. Both are excellent units, and I don''t think you could go wrong with either. Garmin''s higher end units should be wonderful also.
The C-Map are excellent. No replacement for having paper charts, but I do like them. Neatest thing in the world is that 2 chips for about $400-500 (at discount) and you have all charts from SW Florida to Keys to Bahamas through the entire Caribbean. No downloading--just put the 2 chips in the chartplotter and you are good to go. I also have 2 slots in the Radar and I suspect they are usable also, though I haven''t tried.

Good luck in your selection. Its lots of fun.
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Old 10-30-2003
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GPS Chartplotters

recently purchased Garmin 182C - easy to install in cockpit and works great even in direct sunlight.. What a difference from the old Garmin I have.
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Old 11-02-2003
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GPS Chartplotters

Look at the Standard Horizon units. We have a cp170c (colour six inch) and love it. Always daylight viewable, very easy to use, and is lightning fast in the screen redraw.
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