Thoughts on chartplotter/sonar

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doomtrpr_z71
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Joined: March 3rd, 2015, 1:09 pm

Re: Thoughts on chartplotter/sonar

Post by doomtrpr_z71 »

My preference has been hummingbird but I build my own charts and satellite overlays. In my opinion navonics is very much overpriced for what you get inshore. In my dealings with Garmin units the blue chart G3 maps aren't quite up to par with navonics. Navonics is a good deal when it's a $65 deal on Amazon for the previous years chip but not at full price, especially when you can make the map for free from the web if you know how to use SASplanet plus it has more satellite overlays than just Google imagery.

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woodstock52
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Re: Thoughts on chartplotter/sonar

Post by woodstock52 »

I hope John at BPS is correct on Navionics having a new chip for the Garmin units soon. He is a great help when i have questions on products. He even installed a Navionics card into a large Lorance unit in the store for me to see the difference & i like the Navionics look/info better. I received my Ram mount yesterday but i continue to read this thread often because I could still return the Garmin unit at this time. The mount would work for a different brand also. Maybe I should go with a Lorance instead?
woodstock52
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Re: Thoughts on chartplotter/sonar

Post by woodstock52 »

I don't have a clue on how to do that. I will struggle with learning how to use the new unit. So the simpler it is the better i like it. :roll:
PhishingNole
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Joined: March 4th, 2020, 12:07 pm

Re: Thoughts on chartplotter/sonar

Post by PhishingNole »

Here is a thread on the Hull Truth regarding the Navionics maps on Garmin units. My takeaway was that when it works it's nice, but when it doesn't it's a nightmare and it appears that it frequently does not work.

https://www.thehulltruth.com/marine-ele ... sions.html


When compared to the Navionics app you can put on an ipad, the preloaded maps that come in the unit (Echomap UHD 94) leave a LOT to be desired, at least for inshore and nearshore Apalachee bay. After downloading the charts using active captain (sloooow) they are a bit better, but still no relief shading and limited details on bottom structure.

I don't have a reference to compare other manufacturers preloaded maps, so perhaps it's no different than any other manufacturers.

What bothers me is that the Navionics charts for my Garmin unit with relief shading is $250 plus an annual fee of $125 every year after. I get the same data and a significantly better user interface for $22 a year for the Navionics app.

If you don't need the imaging features, I think a basic depth finder paired with a standalone iPad (with charts downloaded) will significantly outperform the Garmin for quite a bit less money.


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PhishingNole
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Joined: March 4th, 2020, 12:07 pm

Re: Thoughts on chartplotter/sonar

Post by PhishingNole »

Here are some reference screen shots:

Garmin taken from Active Captain (same look, feel, and detail as plotter). ImageImageImage

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PhishingNole
Posts: 116
Joined: March 4th, 2020, 12:07 pm

Re: Thoughts on chartplotter/sonar

Post by PhishingNole »

Navionics $22 app taken on my phone with a significantly smaller field of view than an iPad or other tablet:

ImageImageImage

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ropeman
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Re: Thoughts on chartplotter/sonar

Post by ropeman »

PhishingNole wrote: March 24th, 2022, 12:47 pm Here are some reference screen shots:

Garmin taken from Active Captain (same look, feel, and detail as plotter).
Great comparison! Thanks for the screen shots. Which unit did that come from?
PhishingNole
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Re: Thoughts on chartplotter/sonar

Post by PhishingNole »

Echomap UHD 94 SV with the updated maps downloaded from active captain.

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rmax
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Joined: May 28th, 2020, 1:45 pm

Re: Thoughts on chartplotter/sonar

Post by rmax »

I purchased the $149 Navionics chip and downloaded to my Garmin UD 94sv and I am very disappointed. Save your money.
PhishingNole
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Joined: March 4th, 2020, 12:07 pm

Re: Thoughts on chartplotter/sonar

Post by PhishingNole »

rmax wrote:I purchased the $149 Navionics chip and downloaded to my Garmin UD 94sv and I am very disappointed. Save your money.
Is that the G3 chip or the vision+ charts?

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PhishingNole
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Joined: March 4th, 2020, 12:07 pm

Re: Thoughts on chartplotter/sonar

Post by PhishingNole »

Ok, not trying to pile on, but this is information I wish I would have known.

*Also, I know this comes off as whining considering this tech is miles ahead of what it was ten years ago. I'm just shocked at the gap between an $800 purpose built machine and a $22 app on any cell phone/tablet with a built-in GPS.

The navigation user interface on the Garmin is absurdly difficult for 2022. On the app, I can plug in my boat's minimum draft, cruising speed, and even fuel consumption and it will plot a course that is efficient and safe based on the minimum draft I selected. In the app, simply tap the waypoint you wish to navigate to and your starting point and tap navigate. The app has all the waypoints built into search boxes for precise accuracy, such as ramps and waypoints, meaning you can just search in the from/to bars without manually finding the waypoints.

On Garmin, you have to long-hold your starting point first, then manually find the spot you're trying to navigate to without accidentally selecting some random spot while swiping to it. Then, it just draws a straight line from the starting point to the end-point. It'll take you right over land, roads, anything. No navigation whatsoever.

But alas, you can export a route from Navionics to your Garmin (a somewhat tedious process involving connecting to the units wifi and downloading the route at seemingly dialup speeds) but then it adds in a text box for EVERY SINGLE TURN. There's probably a way to remove those boxes, but I haven't figured it out yet.

Again, I fully understand that I'm sounding like a bit of a whiny biatch right now, but again I'm shocked that a $22 app owned by the same company would so drastically outperform an $800 purpose built chartplotter. Of course, the app provides nothing for sonar, but if you've got a machine already and just want better navigation, this might be an option.



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leonreno
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Location: Southwest GA

Re: Thoughts on chartplotter/sonar

Post by leonreno »

Well, the $22 is for the app, the $800 is for the software, and the tablet including a screen, processors, case, sonar system, gps , etc. if you included the purchase of the app and the tablet, prices would be similar. But I’m not discounting your criticism of the navigation process on the Garmin, i don’t use it for that but I have heard it’s not the easiest to use. I have read that the new Navionics mapping for Garmin improves the routing a lot.
PhishingNole
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Joined: March 4th, 2020, 12:07 pm

Re: Thoughts on chartplotter/sonar

Post by PhishingNole »

Good points. I would say just about everyone has an old smartphone or an tablet laying around. A refurbished iPad goes for about $150.

You are correct about the navigation improving if you buy the $150 charts. I've read the navigation behaves much like the app once you have the platinum or G3 card.



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guthooked
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Re: Thoughts on chartplotter/sonar

Post by guthooked »

Not the most tech savvy guy around but the times I tried using my ipad it would overheat in the sun. It would actually shut down on me. I do not have a t top.
leonreno
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Joined: June 13th, 2004, 4:18 pm
Location: Southwest GA

Re: Thoughts on chartplotter/sonar

Post by leonreno »

I’ve used my iPhone on the boat and it can be hard to see, have heard the same of iPads, but probably depends on the boat, if you have a t-top that would probably help a lot, I have Bimini top but don’t use it all the time.
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