Si-Tex T900, new standalone radar
Some boaters don’t like multifunction displays—the theory being that several dedicated devices will never leave a skipper functionless—and thus I’m sometimes asked to recommend a standalone radar. Which is tough, as the recreational models from Furuno, JRC, and Raymarine that I used to be familiar with all seem to be history. Well, check out Si-Tex’s new T-900…
At about $3,000 with a 24” 4kW dome (choices range from 18” to 4.5’ array), the T-900 isn’t as inexpensive as some of those little monochrome LCDs of yore, but that’s an 8.4” color screen and its showing off a dual range feature I’ve been fond of since crossing the Gulf of Maine with a Simrad CX (now also a “legacy product”). The T-900 also has advanced features like “true trails”, can alternately display camera outputs, and claims to eliminate noise and clutter with—get this—”Hyper-Digital Processing”, or HDP! Oh, and as shown below in a photo from the NMEA conference, it has a neat snap off bezel to simplify surface mounting.
Another somewhat new standalone radar that I’ve never mentioned here is Icom’s MR-1000. It even has a green CRT display—talk about old school!—which may be why the Icom guys at the boat shows seem a bit embarrassed about it. But I have heard that it’s selling well in certain areas, the coast of Maine being one, and it did quite well in a pretty comprehensive Cruising World multi-manufacturer radar test a while back.
Nice to see a standalone unit, but a Raymarine C70 with their 2kw dome can be had for well under $2000, a $1000 difference. So why skimp on the extra functions of a MFD?
If you compare Raymarine C70 and this T-900 side by side as a radar, you will know the difference. C70 is a toy, but T-900 is a genuine radar.
MFD’s are skimping on serious performance part of radar.
We purchased the Si-Tex T900 radar this last spring; it has been everything that it was thought out to be. The picture quality is absolutely wonderful, even in direct sunlight. Split screen function worked out great in our annual fishing derby where there were ton of boats around while being totally fogged in. The T900 made navigation simple, setting one half of the screen to 1/2 mile range for close incounters with other boats. Than the other screen we had set to 3 mile range where it was great for seeing the shoreline for basic navigational purposes. It made us feel as if we could just strictly navigate off the radar. Plus of course we were able to navigate our way across the winning 43lb. king salmon. But that’s ahole other story. What a trip, never would of happened without the T900 that’s for sure.
When purchasing our thought was if we decided to go with the other models available it would basically just do the job, but would it do what we actually wanted it to do? NO because we wanted quality picture and functionalities not just a basic radar. So I will not argue with either point but I guess it is just preference on what you are looking for. Si-Tex T900 is no regret here.