Garmin 2015: glass bridge 7600 series, Reactor autopilot, xHD2 radar & more

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.

9 Responses

  1. moose says:

    i run a marine retail shop down here in australia. been a big time garmin fan and this latest upgrade is just amazing. cant wait for it 🙂

  2. Quitsa says:

    One curious thing if the specifications are correct is that the more expensive 8000 units have lower screen resolution than the new 7600 units — 1024X768 on 8212 and 8215 versus 1280X800 on 7612 (which is same as Furuno TZT 14). I looked at an 8215 a few weeks ago and at high zoom levels, the charts did look a bit blocky.
    I really dislike Garmin cartography so no amount of features will lure me in any case, though the 8215 was very slick. I am going to go with the Furuno hardware.

  3. moose says:

    iu wish i could afford those problems 😛

  4. Richard C says:

    I read the manual on the Garmin web site for the Reactor GHP autopilot and was unable to find a “dodge” feature for steering around all those Maine lobster pots. My application is a sailboat with mechanical cable steering so I believe “Shadow Drive” is not possible unless steering is hydraulic. Does anyone know if Shadow Drive is the equivalent of a “Dodge” feature?

  5. Ben Ellison Ben Ellison says:

    Richard, the GHC 20 control head let’s you change course in 10 degree increments with the left/right soft keys (and you can customize the increment). Doesn’t that enable easy pot dodging?
    Shadow Drive is nice (if you have hydraulic steering) because you can put the pilot in Standby just by using the helm. However, when you stop using the helm, the pilot steers whatever course you’re now on, not the original course…so not great for dodging off a carefully set course.

  6. Ben Ellison Ben Ellison says:

    There’s a legal aspect to the sonar wars, though it’s hard to find out what’s really going on. Garmin, for instance, seem very confident about its right to ship SideVu and DownVu technology, but both Johnson Outdoors (Humminbird) and Navico have asked the ITC (International Trade Commission) to investigate patent violations:

  7. Ben
    Very impressed with the products Garmin are bring to market next year.
    Have posted all the different models and specifications on our new Garmin website
    David Lennard
    Hudson Marine

  8. Mark says:

    I am waiting for my new electronic package from Garmin to get delivered for my new boat. 2 8215’s GMR 404hd, ghp20 gsd 26 2 gt40 thp and 1 741. I was told that this package is backordered and Garmin just came out with the 7616’s and I should consider changing. What do you think?

  9. Ben Ellison Ben Ellison says:

    Mark, I think the 7616 is quite similar to the 8215, and very nice. The 8000 series is heavier built and has extra Ethernet/N2K/video ports, but I believe the 7000’s run nearly the same software and work with all the same radars, sonars, etc. I saw one in action here:

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