After months of searching and comparing I am about to push the button on a CPF390i chartplotter/fishfinder. The reasons this unit was selected are:
2. fishfinder = depth finder
3. NMEA 0183 ports to interface with the SH VHF matrix/AIS radio
4. Radar display in the future.
5. price ~ $650.00 excluding in hull transducer which is another $100.00
6. includes charts, worried about the amount of detailed on them.
7. video input, how that is useful is something I haven't figured out.
8. 7 inch display, important to me.
Any comments pro/con?
Maybe its cabin fever pushing me to make this purchase in the dead of winter.
Seems the newer units are NMEA 2000 which is not compatible with the presently owned new VHF.
Nice units for what they are, my main concern with them (I looked and ended up getting nothing) was the NMEA0183, if you want to expand the system in future, add in instruments etc then NMEA2000 is going to be a better route I think.
I think the older SH plotters only have NMEA0183, not 2k as well, that was my main hesitation. I also didn't find their interface terribly intuitive, but likely a couple of hours with the manual and some tweaking and it would be just fine. With regards to expanding in future, you never know when you might want to add in depth/speed, a wind system etc, 2k will make that much easier.