During the next few months I'll be setting up the electronics on my newly purchased Morgan 33 Out Island. The GPS/Plotter I've selected is a Lowrance HDS-7, which has an incredibly bright display, even in direct sunlight. There are a huge number of options to select from, including a split screen showing the GPS chart and fish finder, plus a radar overlay of the GPS chart.
I've looked at two Radar systems, Garmin and Lowrance, both of which appear to have direct connection to the HDS-7 via an Ethernet connection on the back of the unit.
The Lowrance is BR-24 is a broadband radar unit. It only draws 17-watts, which is about half what the Garmin draws. And, it claims to have better close up signal resolution and higher definition. Plus no radiation.
The Garmin GMR-18 draws about 33.5-watts, 32-mile range, which is the same as Lowrance. It uses X-band, digital radar, which I assume does give off some radiation, but I'm not sure.
The Lowrance unit weighs just over 16-pounds, and there is no mention of mounting hardware, brackets or cables. The Garmin weighs slightly less at just over 15-pounds.
First and foremost, what is the difference between Digital and Broadband radar systems when it comes to overall performance and ability to see smaller targets?
Next, I assume the best location for mounting the radar/radome is on the mast. One article I read said 18 to 22 feet above the water seems to work best and eliminate much of the sea clutter. Does anyone know what would be the ultimate height?
Finally, I've recently seen swiveling radar antenna mounts that keep the antenna level at all times. Looks like an ingenious idea that would solve a lot of close range reception problems encountered in rough seas. Does anyone have any experience with this self-leveling antenna mount?
Thanks in advance,