Furuno at MIBS 2013; CHIRP, FCV587/627, and NavPilot FPS8

Ben Ellison

Ben Ellison

Panbo editor, publisher & chief bottlewasher from 4/2005 until 8/2018, and now pleased to have Ben Stein as a very able publisher, webmaster, and editing colleague. Please don't regard him as an "expert"; he's getting quite old and thinks that "fadiddling fumble-putz" is a more accurate description.

11 Responses

  1. Bill Bishop says:

    Ben, I’m a little confused about the Furuno’s DFF1-UHD’s capabilities. It looks like from their literature that the BSD, and Accu-Fish features are only available if you’re using a traditional 50/200kHz transducer. Do you think that is the case?

  2. Ben Ellison Ben Ellison says:

    Bill, I don’t see anything like that in the literature; please point us to what you found.

  3. Bill Bishop says:

    Ben, here it shows the UHD with Accu-Fish and BSD, but with standard 50/200 ducers. There is the word (Advanced) next to them
    Here it shows the same thing, again with 50/200 ducers.
    In both cases it seems to indicate these features are for 50/200 ducers only. It may be that these features weren’t designed to work with CHIRP, or at least yet.

  4. Ben Ellison Ben Ellison says:

    Bill, when they spec a “Dual frequency 50±20 & 200±25 kHz” transducer, I believe that is a broadband ducer capable of CHIRPing from 30-70 and 175-225 kHz. From the press release:
    “The DFF1-UHD TruEcho CHIRP Fish Finder transmits and receives pulses across a range of 90 frequencies (50kHz +/- 20kHz, 200kHz +/- 25kHz) within each transmission.”
    So I think that DFF1-UHD does CHIRP, BDS and Accu-fish all at once.

  5. Bill Bishop says:

    Thanks Ben, I see what your saying, and I’m not arguing, but it seems a confusing way to state it. Their brochure shows the Airmar 265 family of transducers being used which CHIRP’s from 42-65kHz low and 130-210kHz high, It doesn’t seem to correlate with the way they stated their specs.

  6. Rolf says:

    Do you think Furuno can match Raymarine Evolution on autopilot?
    I need to decide before summer… 🙂
    The plan is to go for Raymarine Type 3 and the new Evolution, but according to my Furuno Navnet 3D system I have, it sounds more logically to choose Furuno…
    What do you think? ( my Raymarine type 2 I have today is not strong enough ! )

  7. Nick says:

    Rolf, we have just installed a new Furuno Navpilot 711 with fantum feedback on a 25 foot fibreglass hard top and it is AMAZING!
    on sea trial we were doing 35 knots with a 15 knot cross wind and 2 foot of short sea chop was no issue at all boat steered very well. Combined with a TZT9″ and utilising ACCU-FISH on the sounder, we were using the pilot to navigate back to fish targets from the sounder history.

  8. Rolf says:

    This is what worry me choosing Furuno:
    Our first season we used a Furuno course computer with a pair of AccuSteer linear hydraulic drive units. In short, that was not a good solution. The Furuno autopilot would not hold course, particularly off the wind, and the AccuSteer drive units failed repeatedly. They were both replaced over the summer of 2009.
    We are now using a Raymarine SPX30 course computer and Raymarine Type 3 hydraulic linear drive units. We have an ST6002+ wired controller and S100 wireless controller. We used a Raymarine autopilot on our previous boat and were very happy with its performance and reliability.

  9. Ben Ellison Ben Ellison says:

    Hi Rolf,
    I too was surprised when Russ Irwin changed autopilots on New Morning. But I recall that Russ was an early adopter of several Furuno products and didn’t seem to have the patience to make that a good experience. At any rate, Furuno has had a lot of time to work on its AP technology since 2008, and I’m sure they have.
    My overall sense is that modern sensors, processors, and control logic mean that all the majors are making autopilots that generally work well. And often there are some dividends that come ‘free’ with using an AP of the same brand as your primary navigation system.
    But that said I’d think that anyone with hydraulic steering might be interested in the Safe Helm and Power Assist features Furuno has come up with. Then again the Raymarine Evolution with a sensor/course computer that needs no calibration, can be mounted most anywhere, and purportedly perfects itself continuously seems intriguing.
    But I don’t know how you’ll ever know which AP is best for your boat (unless you try both). Good AP comparisons are rare and invariably subjective at least to the boats involved. The folks who probably know the most about comparative performance are company product managers and engineers, and they tend not to talk up the competition 😉

  10. Rolf says:

    Thanks for the answer !
    I see the Raymarine Type 3 hydraulic linear drive has a peak thrust on 1200kg.
    I cannot find something to compare from accu-steer….?
    Is it the LA100 that is a “type 3” comparing to Raymarine specification?

  11. Rolf says:

    For information:
    The Accu-Steer LA17 model has a max thrust on 475 kg. ( Similar to Raymarine Type-2 )
    So Raymarine Evolution, together with a Type-3 hydraulic linear drive, will be my next Autopilot !! ( sorry Furuno )

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