The Trade

Garmin acquires ActiveCaptain, now what?

11 May

Written by Ben Ellison on May 11, 2017 for Panbo, The Marine Electronics Hub

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This morning Garmin purchased ActiveCaptain and I have no idea if that will turn out to be good news or otherwise. Will this large and growing database of crowd-sourced cruising information change now that it belongs to a major electronics brand? I have no bold opinions but I do have lots of questions I hope to discuss…

For instance, will access to all the ActiveCaptain cruising data remain forever free as promised by the founders but now former owners Karen and Jeffrey Siegel? The Garmin press ...

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Sabre 66: excellence in digital switching and control

17 Apr

Written by Ben Ellison on Apr 17, 2017 for Panbo, The Marine Electronics Hub

Sabre_Dirigo_66_hull_1_courtesy_Sabre_Billy_Black.jpg

Frankly, there’s no plan behind the Panbo trend of more detailed entries posted less often, but sometimes it does seem like a feature rather than a bug. For instance, Sabre gave me a long and impressive systems tour of their first Dirigo 66 while she beautifully occupied this slip at Yachts Miami Beach 2016, and while I didn’t intend to delay the write-up this long, last week I got aboard just-launched hull #3 the day before heading from Maine to Florida at about 25 knots. So ...

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BAM! Raymarine Axiom MFDs, LightHouse 3, RealVision 3D sonar & FLIR M100/200 ClearCruise

15 Feb

Written by Ben Ellison on Feb 15, 2017 for Panbo, The Marine Electronics Hub

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Raymarine and FLIR are coming to the Miami Boat Show loaded for bear. Those three new 7-, 9- and 12-inch Axiom multifunction displays are showing new LightHouse 3 operating software and new RealVision 3D sonar. Moreover, you’ll learn below about how new M100 and M200 thermal cameras can give the Axioms some features normally seen on superyachts. BAM! The theme that seems evident throughout is modern interface and hardware design with value pricing and a potent dash of innovation spice…

Raymarine_Axiom_MFD_key_features_aPanbo.jpgThe new Axiom MFDs are compact ...

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Lauderdale ‘lectronics: sensors, sats, cams, boats, ROVs and ?

1 Nov

Written by Ben Ellison on Nov 1, 2016 for Panbo, The Marine Electronics Hub

Fort_Lauderdale_Boat_Show_2016_maps.jpgThe Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show (FLIBS) has become an enormous event, and I would have a hard time covering all the interesting electronics-related exhibits even if I actually motivated my lazy old butt out of Maine this week. But I do have the goods on one important set of new products (that I can share tomorrow), and I’ve also got some ideas about booths and docks to visit that some of you might enjoy and perhaps even report back about…

Maretron_CLM100_Current_Loop_Monitor_aPanbo.jpgAnyone interested in marine electronics ...

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NMEA 2000 realities, the pro installer view

4 Oct

Written by Ben Ellison on Oct 4, 2016 for Panbo, The Marine Electronics Hub

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The day after the annual National Marine Electronics Association (NMEA) Conference ended, the Association ran its new Advanced NMEA 2000 Installer Certification course in the same Naples, Florida, hotel and let me sit in. I learned about numerous N2K subtleties and also about how NMEA trainings have evolved, but let’s start with a fact that says a lot about who the overall organization is: The course trainer Mike Spyros (seen twice above) is not only an exceptionally knowledgeable and seasoned electronics installer, he’s also the incoming ...

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Navico NASA moves tech support to the cloud

10 Sep

Written by Bill Bishop on Sep 10, 2016 for Panbo, The Marine Electronics Hub

navico_nasa_logo_aPanbo.jpgMarine electronics tech support is a ritual I’m all too familiar with. Dial the phone, wade through the metaphorical press one for yes, two for no and wait until the tech picks up. For the average boater this can quickly turn into a button pushing slog with unsatisfactory results. Tech: “What version of software are you running?” Boater: I don’t know, where do I find it?” Tech: “Go to the System tab.” Boater: “Where’s the system tab?” Tech: “It’s in Settings.” Boater: “Where’s Settings?” I won’t ...

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SSECN and MITA cruising info apps, Doyle Bon Voyage, and Cuba Ho!

26 Apr

Written by Ben Ellison on Apr 26, 2016 for Panbo, The Marine Electronics Hub

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If I was once again in New Bern, North Carolina, about to cruise north with spring — instead of watching late April freaking snow fall in Maine — I’d certainly have the new Cruisers’ Net app loaded on my iPad and might well use it all day every day while I was still in the Intracoastal Waterway (ICW). It’s absolutely loaded with solid, well presented information, and I’m happy to add that the Maine Island Trail Association (MITA) has done something similar for my local cruising ...

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Garmin demos: GPSMAP 8600, ForwardVu, Fantom, Virb XE, Quatix3 & more

15 Apr

Written by Ben Ellison on Apr 15, 2016 for Panbo, The Marine Electronics Hub

Garmin_GPSMAP_8617_on_Contender_25_aPanbo.jpgAt this moment in time, the Garmin GPSMAP 8600 multifunction display announced in February may be the most powerful premium MFD available. That’s the “little” 8617 model of the series above — apparently now shipping at $7,500 retail — and that Quatix 3 smart/fitness/boat watch is not trivial technology either. So even given two full days with four Garmin-loaded boats, I feel like I only grazed the surface of all that’s going on. And frankly, the story is similar across the four major electronics brands ...

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TBF: Modeling NY40 Marilee, Weems & Plath magnifier & young Mr. Harding

25 Mar

Written by Ben Ellison on Mar 25, 2016 for Panbo, The Marine Electronics Hub

Stephens_Waring_proposed_Marilee_design_aPanbo.jpg(Bits are back, if you know what I mean.) I skim a lot of email newsletters but this recent Stephens Waring Yacht Design creation brought the process to a quiet halt. I clicked up this image as big as possible and became mesmerized, and it later turned out that even the newsletter text is only a sketch of the bigger story. Before we get into that, I suggest you get mesmerized, and I snagged even higher resolution images. Clicking them big may be slow, but ...

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Flash: C-Map and Navico become sister companies

16 Mar

Written by Ben Ellison on Mar 16, 2016 for Panbo, The Marine Electronics Hub

Boeing_sells_C-Map_to_Altor_(Navico)_aPanbo.jpgHere’s some big news in the small world of marine electronics. Boeing company Jeppesen just sold its marine cartography division to a formerly unknown entity named Digital Marine Solutions (DMS) and it “will trade under the C-Map brand name” (as it did before Jeppesen came along and as many of us could never stop calling it). DMS belongs to the “Nordic-based Altor family of private equity funds” which also owns the Navico family of Lowrance, B&G, Simrad, and GoFree brands. Interesting?

I should not be ...

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