Monthly Archive: June 2013

Intellian Technologies: smart, articulate & classy 10

Intellian Technologies: smart, articulate & classy


Intellian Technologies has come a long way since they first introduced their own brand of satellite TV antenna systems at the 2008 NMEA Conference, where I first met them. In fact, the company may well be the fastest growing in marine electronics, going from 77 employees in 2010 to 160 today. Intellian has also gone from supplying only the relatively modest end of the marine TV antenna market to all size vessels, broadband satellite communications definitely included. The company story is interesting on many levels, but there was a particularly telling moment as Global Marketing VP Paul Comyns (standing above) and CEO Eric Sung (to his left) addressed the group of American and European boating journalists that Intellian hosted in Korea.

Fusion Marine Stereo 2013, great but confusing! 58

Fusion Marine Stereo 2013, great but confusing!

Fusion UniDock.jpg

Last week I had a long conference call with the Fusion Marine product management team in New Zealand. I came away even more impressed with how committed the company is to integrating its entertainment products with our boats and mobile A/V sources in every way possible. But I also got a deeper understanding of what a complicated mess their innovative ways has created!  I’ll start with the new MS-UNIDOCK Universal External Dock (above). It solves the problem Apple created by putting a new and entirely different Lightning connector on the iPhone 5 and current iPods — without even telling their accessory developers in advance! — but it also created a new issue for Fusion…

Nobeltec TimeZero, “most advanced marine navigation App for iPad on the market”? 58

Nobeltec TimeZero, “most advanced marine navigation App for iPad on the market”?


Any boater with an iPad has an amazing selection of apps these days, and the Android selection isn’t bad either. For some time I’ve intended to catch up on interesting new charting entries like SEAiq and SeaNav plus major improvements in category leaders like Navionics Mobile, C-Map Plan2Nav, and Garmin BlueChart Mobile. (And also clever ideas like SARMOB, which can turn multiple smartphones into an active man overboard system, and Boat Battery, which can help us figure out our electrical appetites and share specific device power profiles.) But today I’m going to focus entirely on the spanking new Nobeltec TimeZero iPad app, because I think it’s amazing…

Vesper Marine WatchMate, still the leader in AIS collision avoidance? 28

Vesper Marine WatchMate, still the leader in AIS collision avoidance?


New York Harbor demands your attention even when you have lots of great electronics including what’s arguably the best recreational-level AIS target tracking system. That’s my excuse for not photographing the ideal example of the Vesper Marine AIS WatchMate 850 at work in heavy traffic. A more compelling shot might be more zoomed in and would have at least one solid target icon indicating a vessel(s) that had reached the Vesper’s highly configurable alarm level. But do note how the WatchMate is tracking 114 targets at this point in time though it’s also filtering 102 of those off the screen so that yours truly can better see the ones that matter. That in itself is worthy of discussion… 

Dr. Yung’s NMEA 2000 lab, Ship Convergence Center too! 19

Dr. Yung’s NMEA 2000 lab, Ship Convergence Center too!


I so appreciated getting to know Dr. Yung Ho Yu — known around the world simply as Dr. Yung — at the Korea Maritime University in Busan, and I think you will too once you realize how much he and his programs are doing to advance marine electronics and improve the standards that make them inter-operable. For starters, take a close look at the NMEA 2000 teaching lab surrounding the good Doctor. The twenty work stations are all gatewayed to an extensive N2K sensor network so that students can experience and even interact with the protocol right down to the bit level as the instructor demonstrates from his work station. I’d like to be wrong, but I doubt that there’s a similarly powerful teaching and research tool anywhere else on the planet…

Maretron SMS100, advanced NMEA 2000 monitoring via cell texts 16

Maretron SMS100, advanced NMEA 2000 monitoring via cell texts


Two recent experiences make me particularly excited about the Maretron SMS100 announced today (and already shipping). During the trip north I learned to appreciate the sophisticated “Alert” features built into Maretron’s various NMEA 2000 displays and I also enjoyed some benefits of the Siren Marine cellular monitoring system. In fact, Gizmo’s refrigerator currently contains two temperature sensors, a Maretron probe for on board monitoring and a Siren probe so I can keep an eye on the system from afar (even from Korea, by gosh). While the standalone and economical Siren system will definitely remain appropriate for some boats (and Maretron probably has an SMS learning curve to climb), I’m really looking forward to having virtually unlimited N2K monitoring on my phone…