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ContinuousWave: Small Boat Electrical
Upgrading With Older Used Electronics
|Author||Topic: Upgrading With Older Used Electronics|
posted 10-19-2013 03:29 PM ET (US)
I bought my 1997 Outrage 20 about three years ago, and it has a c.2005 Lowrance LMS 330C chart plotter and SONAR. The LMS 330C has a five-inch screen and 240 x 320 resolution. It is capable os displaying NMEA-2000 data from my E-TEC, which I rely on and never look at the analog gauges anymore. The SONAR is a fixed 200-kHz 600-Watt system.
I have been thinking of buying a used Lowrance LCX-25, -26, -27, or -28. These units are a couple years newer and have:
--480 x 620 resolution
--50 kHz and 200 kHz 1000-Watt SONAR (but unfortunately my transducer is 73 and 200-kHz), and
--Ethernet (not sure what I would use it for)
SONAR logging to SD card
Of course I would love to do an Elite 7DSI (if it were full NMEA), HDS 7 or 8 ,or a Furuno 1870, but I just don't have that sort of coin. My Lowrance LMS 330C works well now. I mostly would just like a better screen. I mostly use the SONAR for a depth overlay on the map.
Is it stupid to upgrade to an old unit? They can be had for $200 to $300. Are there other units I should look at that have NMEA-2000 and a seven-inch display? I should also be able to use all the peripherals from the old Lowrance (power, transducer, LGC 4000 GPS)
Also, what is the best way to mount these? Modify for flush mount or do a gimbal mount inside the electronics cubby like I have now? Always like the flush mount look, but not sure if it is practical as the current mount I use.
posted 10-20-2013 09:46 AM ET (US)
You might consider the HDS Gen1 products, too. They are now about three to four years old, making them obsolete. The prices for used ones are very low compared to their original cost.
Another consideration is the embedded cartography on a particular used unit. Some units may have much better chart cartography in their stored memory than other ones.
posted 10-20-2013 02:30 PM ET (US)
Thanks jimh, it looks like some othe HD units come with cartography pre-loaded. I have a Navionics Gold chip, so im not sure if the Nauticpath maps would be any better. I have been watching some the the Gen1 HDS7s and 8s too. The prices are a ton lower than the gen2s! Is your HDS8 a 1st or 2nd gen? I have read that the gen2 is better for use with structure scan (which i dont think i would get much use out of)
Thanks for the input. I just saw a LCX25 go for $179.99 on eBay.
posted 10-20-2013 07:33 PM ET (US)
My HDS-8 is a Gen1. Its operation seems painfully slow these days, but in actual use on the boat, you don't change screens that much. Most of the time the display is set to a chart with a depth overlay, and the speed is just fine. It only seems slow when I have it home and on the bench, where I try to navigate between many screens.
posted 10-22-2013 07:40 PM ET (US)
When buying a used unit, you should consider updating the cartography, if you're using it as a plotter. Especially in your area where seasonal storms can alter the channels and bottom contours significantly.
Up in the Great Lakes, the bottom doesn't change much- so a few years out of date chart isn't likely to cause problems except in areas prone to shoaling. In the Bahamas, I could imagine your chart could be out of date the same month you purchase it, depending on the weather.
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