New Electronics for 2012

13 new electronics items that can mean more effective fishing

February 21, 2012

Standard Horizon Explorer GPS GX1700

Network integration is simplified with Standard Horizon’s Explorer GPS GX1700 compact and waterproof fixed-mount VHF. With its built-in 12-channel GPS and remote-access-microphone (RAM) option, there is no need for additional wiring and connections to take advantage of the radio’s features. Out of the box, it’s ready to go with DSC calling, position polling, waypoint navigation, DSC distress-call navigation and distress position notification. It saves up to 100 waypoints, and its navigation features display speed, course, bearing and distance to the waypoint. $229.99;

Navico Broadband 4G

Navico has announced the next-generation radar, the Broadband 4G, which delivers twice the transmitting power for 50 percent greater range and target detection than its forerunner, the 3G. The 3G changed the way boaters looked at small-boat radar; this latest model moves broad-beam technology further into the realm of conventional radar in terms of reach and power. Combined with the Simrad NSE chart plotter, Broadband 4G displays dual-range radar combinations from a single scanner, from boat-side to 36 nautical miles, from a single dome with speeds up to 48 rpm. Among the additional improvements are Beam Sharpening, which significantly improves the azimuth resolution, and Target Separation Control, a manual level adjustment for fine-tuning. $1,899;

Furuno 700-Series Autopilot

Furuno has incorporated a number of fuel-saving and fish-finding features in its new 700-series autopilot. The Open Ocean feature, designed for longer passages, reduces the demands of accurate course holding, allowing the boat to drift a bit and average out the variation for up to 10 percent savings in fuel. Also, the reduction of demand on the steering pump helps to reclaim a substantial amount of horsepower. A second new feature, Safe Helm, allows the skipper to take control of the helm at will. The autopilot relinquishes control at a touch, without the operator having to manually adjust the controls. Starting at $4,095;

Icom MA-500TR

The Icom MA-500TR Class B AIS transponder provides invaluable situational awareness in close quarters and crowded harbors, as well as in shipping lanes at sea. With its own integrated display screen, the unit gives easy access to AIS targets and associated information, as opposed to cluttering an already data-rich MFD. The display is adjustable for north-up or course-up viewing, and the Danger List default of 60 minutes and six nautical miles can be adjusted to suit your surroundings. With the transponder connected to a compatible Icom radio, DSC calls can be initiated from the AIS, eliminating a broadcast hailing or manual entry of an MMSI number to contact specific vessels that appear on the screen. $899;

CHIRP Transducers

Airmar has developed a complete set of transducers designed to take full advantage of developments in the CHIRP fish-finding sonars being rolled out by an increasing number of manufacturers. With 18 different models in a full range of low/high (28 to 75 kHz and 130 to 210 kHz) and low/medium (28 to 75 kHz and 80 to 135 kHz) frequency splits, available as in-hull, pocket, keel or through-hull mounts, there’s an installation and a frequency range to match every angler’s targeted species and style of fishing. Mid-level models incorporate a fast-response temperature sensor. Prices range from $1,595 to $4,495;

Raymarine i70 and p70 Control Heads

Raymarine’s i70 instrument and p70 and p70R autopilot control heads sport new styling and a full range of easy-to-use features. The 4-inch oversize LCDs allow 160-degree viewing, enhanced by an anti-glare coating. Digits can be configured to display at up to 1.7 inches for ease in viewing from a distance, in poor light or in advancing maturity. LED backlighting delivers vibrant color and contrast, with a 35 percent reduction in power draw. The i70 instrument has the ability to display a full range of data and function as an AIS repeater. i70, $595; p70, $595; p70R, $649;

Navionics NewsStand

A new component of the Navionics mobile application, NewsStand offers anglers access to a library of articles by the best writers in the business, reprinted from a number of authoritative magazines, but most importantly, from Salt Water Sportsman. Articles are georeferenced for popular destinations and cover species and techniques, offering usable information. They can be read immediately or downloaded and stored for later reference. The NewsStand articles can be searched by specific category or title or simply will appear as embedded icons as you pan an area you plan to fish. $10 for iPhone and Android; $34.99 for iPad;

Geonav G10 and G12 MFDs

Geonav has introduced significantly lower prices and an important new feature on its G10 and G12 MFDs. The two models feature DualFuel autorouting, an advanced component of the autopilot that allows you to enter the specific parameters of your boat, such as height, draft and width. Then when you select a destination and have the autopilot execute the course, it accommodates the parameters you have set, routing you around water too shallow for the draft of your boat, for example. The feature works with both C-Map by Jeppesen charts and the Navionics platforms that Geonav supports. A software upgrade is available for existing owners. G10, $2,499; G12, $2,999;

Si-Tex AIS

Si-Tex is offering a black-box AIS in two configurations. A Metadata AIS Class B Transceiver has a built-in 50-channel GPS antenna. As it’s compatible with NMEA 0183 and NMEA 2000 protocols and equipped with a USB port for computer connectivity and power, networking is simple and preconfigured. The Dual-Channel AIS Receiver carries the same host of features but is a receiver only. AIS Class B Transceiver, $699; Dual-Channel AIS Receiver, $329;

Humminbird AS HRD2 and AS HRD4

Humminbird brings the advantages of a powerful radar to smaller fishing boats with the AS HRD2 and AS HRD4. The AS HRD2 is a 12-inch 2 kw radome, one of the few 12-inch models available to anglers who desire installation on the smallest of boats. The AS HRD4 is a 21-inch 4 kw radome, suitable for installation on boats that traditionally carry radar. Designed for simplicity and Ethernet plug-and-play, all Humminbird 800-, 900- and 1100-series MFDs take about two hours to install. A free downloadable software update is available for current owners who wish to upgrade for the new hardware. AS HRD2, $1,499.99; AS HRD4, $2,199.99;

C-Map Plan2Nav

C-Map by Jeppesen’s mobile application, the Plan2Nav for iPad 1, iPad 2, iPhone 3GS and iPhone 4 devices, includes harbor charts, Jeppesen’s C-Marina Port Database, marina diagrams and aerial images to help anglers plan and archive trips. The app includes dynamic tide and current predictions, detailed depth and land-elevation data, 2-D and Perspective View formats, and the ability to download and overlay both five-day weather forecasts and satellite images using Google Maps. Routes can be saved and exported to a computer for storage or sharing. Plan2Nav with base map, free; C-Map packages from $19;

Baron Mobile Link

The Baron Mobile Link enables viewing of XM WX Satellite Weather data on an iPhone, iPad or device running the Android operating system. The Mobile Link itself connects an XM WX data receiver with a mobile device and is designed to work with apps by third-party developers. The information available on the mobile device includes sea-surface temperature, present and forecast wave height, surface wind speed and direction, and a range of forecasts. Mobile Link unit, $199.99; available for purchase at

Fusion MS-IP700 iPod and MS-AV700 DVD

Fusion’s new MS-IP700 iPod and MS-AV700 DVD provide control of audio and video and mobile-device viewing of all the information on the network. The units are more than add-on stereos, as Fusion-Link software enables the NMEA 2000 backbone to repeat system data on remotes, displays and navigation units, as well as depth, speed and heading data on a Fusion display. Access to music, video, the VHF and navigational data, such as depth, speed and heading, becomes possible for an integrated iPad. The MS-NRX200 remote allows a separate display screen to be installed on the boat, such as at the swim platform or in a stateroom. MS-IP700 iPod, $449.99; MS-AV700 DVD, $599.99; remote, $189.99;

Shakespeare Centennial 5104

Shakespeare’s new Centennial 5104 antenna fills a spot between entry-level models and top-end setups in the 3 dB 4-foot VHF antenna category. Its brass and copper elements will weather the saltwater environment in good style, and the chrome-plated brass ferrule with standard threading makes for easy mounting and removal. The smooth, high-gloss polyurethane finish resists sun and weathering to stay looking great. $95.95;
SWS-600x400-D Digital Consumer Marketing Offer
Enjoy reading Salt Water Sportsman on your iPad with the digital version. Purchase single issues or save with a monthly or annual subscription! Click here

More Photos