Garmin VHF 200, first impressions

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.

5 Responses

  1. VHF 100 should be able to do similar set of “advanced DSC” functions over NMEA 0183, at least position pooling as it is anounced on

  2. AaronH says:

    Very interesting that Garmin used N2k at all, being that the PGNs for VHF data aren’t fully realized. They could have gone with Ethernet, another universal cabling standard, carrying proprietary data.

  3. Bill Lentz says:

    Ben; I have been using my Navionics AIS300L transponder (N2K) to grab the target MSSI, then with a simple push of a button I can call the ship via MMSI even requesting taking them to a talk channel of my choice. I have done this a few times to see if the Class A AIS vessels can actually see me. So far I’m 6 for 6. Using the DSC functions from my Garmin 4212 OR 4210 the call is set up on the Garmin VHF200 screen all I have to do is hit send. This is a very cool and practical function of the 3 devices all woring well together. The only problem I have is both radio’s get the display MMSI send data on their screens. Still a minor flaw possibly not even a flaw I guess it depends on how you look at it.
    Bill Lentz
    Wireless One, Little Egg, NJ
    40 Mainship Sedan Bridge

  4. Richard C says:

    Comment on my Garmin VHF 200 that was purchased as one of the first issued:
    This VHF has been one of the biggest failure products Garmin ever produced. I won’t get into all the problems I’ve had, but will say my radio has been back to Garmin for repair under warranty three times. I should have abandon it early on but stuck it out. Even now the radio does not work properly when “Local” is selected. I do like the N2K integration, the high clear volume and big display. However, the depth dimension is restrictive on where I was able to install it. Now, as I redesign my nav station front panel I again find it hard to squeeze in because of the deep dimension of the chassis.
    What I need is a VHF radio with shallow depth like the Icom 504, but also with N2K. Why has it taken manufacturers so long to design all VHF’s with NMEA 2000? I haven’t read a single worthwhile reason for not including N2K in every VHF radio. Is there some reason I’m missing that in 2014 VHF’s still want NMEA 0183 for DSC?

  5. Quitsa says:

    Did you look at the Simrad RS-12? Not the highest spec VHF radio but it does have a NMEA2000 port. It seems a bit smaller in footprint also.

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