Perhaps you too remember seeing decent-looking marine electronics peeking out of boatyard dumpsters? While I fear that such waste is probably still happening, thankfully websites like eBay and Craigslist have made it much easier for buyers and sellers of niche gear to find each other. But did you know that a company in South Florida has brought high levels of expertise and professionalism to the used boat electronics market? In fact, the main goal of this entry is a hearty endorsement of Max Marine Electronics…
Category: Editors’ Blog
The Navigator of the United States Navy does not mess around. Addressing a bow-tie-speckled crowd of New England yachtsmen and nautical history buffs, Rear Admiral Richard West passionately described the “technological explosion” that is blowing apart the grand traditions of marine navigation, and his commitment to an all-digital future. When asked the inevitable question about paper charts, he grinned mischievously and said, “We’re going to throw them all overboard!”
Most of us get to see the NMEA 2000 data sharing standard doing good on our boats, like how the N2K output of a GPS receiver — or heading sensor, or AIS transponder, etc. — can be seen and used by almost any network display regardless of brand. But I’m sorry to report that most of us have also been missing out on a valuable NMEA 2000 feature that’s been available for over a decade. I’m talking about the set of Alert PGNs — i.e. bundles of subject-specific data and command fields known by their Parameter Group Numbers — that theoretically permit any N2K device to send standard or custom alerts to any display, which…
Apple’s Steve Jobs introduced the iPad in April 2010. At the time, I was working in financial services technology. The day it was introduced, I ordered a half dozen of them so we could try them out and see what this new-fangled computer without a keyboard might do well. That original iPad, with 256 megabytes of RAM, 16 gigabytes of storage, and a tiny app store was pretty limited. But, we’ve come a long way in the last 13 years and tablets can do an awful lot. But, are they a replacement for dedicated navigation electronics? Let’s take a look at the capabilities they offer and some of the remaining limitations.
Battle Born is possibly the most recognizable brand of lithium iron phosphate (LiFePO4) batteries in the market today. They’ve built a strong brand around their tagline of “Get out there, stay out there” and the concept that their batteries will help you enjoy your adventure. Their marketing concentrates on what their batteries can help you enjoy, not on the nitty-gritty of their batteries. That strategy has worked for them, even as others have advanced the capabilities of their batteries past Battle Born’s position.
It’s been just over six months since Ian ravaged Southwest Florida and, with it, the life my family and I built in Fort Myers. Ian sunk our home on the water, Have Another Day, and destroyed the marina we’d called home for three and a half years. Our lives have continued. We are settled in our house, we’ve found a place to keep our center console, Panbo(at), and overall we don’t have much to complain about, but boy do we miss living on the water.
Last year at the Miami show, B&G’s Navico sister company, Simrad, was showing off NSX, the first MFD running Navico’s new Neon operating system. This year it’s B&G’s turn to show their Neon-based Zeus S. Neon on the Zeus S comes with a plethora of sailing-specific features and at least one new safety feature I’ve never seen on a recreational product.
Since I started paying attention to marine electronics , I’ve heard that Furuno radars are the class of the industry. My own experiences on boats have shown that rumor to be accurate. So, I was awfully disappointed when I couldn’t get my hands on an eval unit when I did my radar comparisons (part II here). I have some good news! Furuno was able to provide a unit for comparison and I’ve had (just a little) bit of time on the water with it.
Raymarine announced several new products either at or just before MIBS this year. The list includes updates to their Axiom Pro and Axiom XL MFDs, a new sonar sounder, and a new camera. Additionally, Raymarine showed off a pre-release version of their latest software update, including an attractive new icon set for the core applications.
The Miami International Boat Show (MIBS) is the first major show of the year. As a result, it’s frequently where we see manufacturers showing off their latest products. This year was no exception. I walked the show floor, finding the latest and greatest offerings in the marine technology space. I’m going to do a series of posts on what I found. The first up is Icom’s M510BB black box VHF radio.