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Anyone recently purchase a new radar system? Would love to hear your lessons-learned.
Yes..just had a Garmin package installed..RADAR, AIS, Chart plotter , and console instruments..has every thing that your criteria is looking for and more...

Bottom line it's the installer that will be the limiting factor as there are allot of BS out there..that say they will promise allot and will not deliver or will not get back to you with a question or concern... Go to a reputable marina that installs allot of electronics and will stand behind their installations..not some fly-by-night independent (supposed) electronics expert that hangs his 'shingle' out that hang out on forums all day taunting his expertise...
 

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My installer installed a seperate panel (built in amp and voltage meters)with seperate circuit breakers for RADAR,Chartplotter and NMEA 2K.. So I have a relative idea what each unit will draw when turned on seperatly or combined.
 

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One often overlooked component is the usability and intuativeness of the controls. Do you like knobs or buttons? Track pointers or other ways to interface. Do you like a lot of menu options up front, or prefer sub-menus?

I didn't use my radar all the time on my last boat. I basically fired it up when in the fog, and since I try and avoid running in the fog, it was not that often. Consequently I wasn't all that familiar with it's functions, but I found it (a raymarine unit) intuitive enough to get the basics down quickly.

Do you expect guests or crew to use it? If so it'd be nice if it was simple to learn and use so they don't have to wake you up when you're off watch. How about your boat partner? Electronic savvy or no?

If you have a west marine or some other shop that has several of them on display, take some time on a rainy day and play with the displays of each and see which one works for you.

Medsailor
If my wife can figure it(our new Garmin package) in less then hour..then I'd say it's pretty "intuitive"..then again she trains medical personnel on the use of their new medical equipment..:D
 
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