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Levi Watson
Levi Watson

What Chartplotter Should I Buy



For the most part, MFDs are what you would look to put on most cruising yachts and racing yachts of the modern era. A chartplotter by itself might be something you are after if you are very limited in terms of space and/or budget, or have (and intend to remain with) very few other electronics onboard.




what chartplotter should i buy


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Whether you're cruising next to the coastline or planning for an off-the-coast voyage to an unfamiliar territory, a chartplotter is a critical navigation tool that's essential for every modern sailor.


Today, and thanks to technological advancements in the marine industry, modern marine electronics offer a wide range of information that sailors can use to chart their course, communicate, and enhance their sailing experience. One such electronic is the marine chartplotter.


A chartplotter is a very crucial navigation tool in modern sailing. Whether you're looking to identify underwater structures while sailing or looking to map out complex courses, a chartplotter is of great importance in keeping you safe and ensuring that you do not run aground.


Thanks to the advent of technology, chartplotters have become more sophisticated. They're packed with lots of incredible features that choosing the right one for your sailing adventures has become pretty much difficult.


But as we always do, we want to make it a lot easier for you. In this comprehensive guide, we'll highlight the best chartplotters and provide you with all the information that you need to select the best chartplotter for your sailboat.


Whether you were top of your geography class and have a unique way with longitudes and latitudes or just a compass pro, a chartplotter remains a must-have if you're going to safely navigate the open seas. Well, you may even have a GPS in your sailboat but it won't be of much help because it only shows the coordinate of where you want to go in numbers. It won't show you the underwater icebergs and such structure. This is exactly why a chartplotter plays a fundamental role in your sailing adventures.


In most cases, a chartplotter excellently combines a GPS and an optical device so that you can see your exact position on the map and the structures around you on an interactive screen. With a chartplotter, you'll no longer get confused by the longitude and latitude coordinates or get mixed up in GPS numbers. If anything, it will accurately show you your location and allow you to read everything as you go about with your sailing exploits.


You're probably wondering why we aren't jumping straight into the best chartplotters but wait a minute! There are different types of chartplotters and this is probably one of the main reasons why you may feel confused when looking to buy the right device for your vessel. Here are the basic types of chartplotters that you'll come across on the market.


This type of marine chartplotter gives you the option of placing it anywhere. As the name suggests, you can even hold it in your hand and go on with your sailing business. This means that they're compact and small in size and have an internal GPS. They're also designed with integrated maps but these maps aren't very detailed as you may want them to be.


This is the most common type of marine chartplotters and has a bigger screen than handheld chartplotters. This means that you won't be comfortable holding it in your hand and that's why it's more suitable if you can mount it on your vessel. This type of chartplotters comes with loads of features such as an option to save routes and waypoints for future reference, additional maps, a built-in compass, and a barometric altimeter.


Needless to say, this is exactly what you need if you want to go fishing. In addition to helping you with your navigation, they can help you locate fish by sending sound waves to your chartplotter's screen. In essence, such a device will make your fishing adventures a lot easier and more fun.


This is a high-tech chartplotter that will provide you with the most accurate information that can give you the utmost control of your boat. They generally come with built-in internet connectivity so that you can connect them to the Wi-Fi or your smartphone.


In essence, network chartplotters will help you get accurate information and pictures of your targeted places while also alerting you of any potential danger in the surrounding in terms of icebergs and other underwater structures. They'll also show you the water temperatures, allow you to listen to music, and are loaded with lots of user-friendly features.


Honestly speaking, many modern chartplotters do more than just mapping your routes and having big touch screen displays. They also have elaborate features that can help relay more accurate information that will not only make your sailing jaunts safer but more fun. Here are a few factors to consider when choosing the best chartplotters.


On the other hand, a big screen offers a more rewarding experience in terms of the details shown and you won't have to constantly zoom as you'd do if the screen is small. That being said, you should go for a bigger screen as its benefits outweigh having a small screen.


Even though all chartplotters offer nautical charts to keep you safe and guide you during your sailing adventures, they can vary depending on how the charts are offered. It's, therefore, important to ensure that your device of choice offers the right charts for your needs.


Most chartplotters have sonar but it's essential to make sure that you can perfectly accessorize it. Make sure that they have Wi-Fi capabilities and you can tether them using your smartphone or tablet.


In most cases, sailors love the outdoors and it would be nice if you get a chartplotter that is very versatile. Besides being a marine chartplotter, it should be versatile enough to help you map out the roads, biking, and hiking trails, as well as spotting fish.


If you are looking for a chartplotter that has every top feature that you need for safe and smooth operation, look no further than the Garmin Striker 4 GPS. This model is designed with one of the most advanced scanning sonars to enable you to track and see every type of object around your sailboat.


As one of the biggest brands in the chartplotter industry, B&G is an industry leader in creating marine electronics that are sailing-specific. The Vulcan 7 is true evidence of this as it is packed with an excellent range of sailing-specific features that will offer a more rewarding sailing experience.


From the entry-level Axiom range to the Axiom Pro, and elite-level Axiom XL range, Raymarine is widely known for manufacturing some of the best multifunctional chartplotters in the industry. However, the Axiom 7 seems to trounce them all even though it's not sailing-specific.


Well, this is perhaps because it's arguably one of the most versatile chartplotters in the game. In addition to doing its navigational duties, this unit integrates a very robust fish finder, which makes it very useful if you want to indulge in some fishing while sailing. It has an excellent transom-mounted sonar transducer and provides a wind sensor, CHIRP sonar, Quantum radar, audio integration, FLIR thermal cameras, autopilot system, and a normal camera.


Perfect for various types of sailboats including day boats and sports boats, this is your perfect solution if you're looking for an easy-to-use chartplotter. Its shiny display touchscreen is intuitive and offers one of the best screen features. For example, you can easily zoom in by just pinching the screen and it will show you your routes, waypoints, underwater objects, and any other thing that you want to look at.


In essence, using this chartplotter is very similar to the way you use your smartphone and you can customize it by adding shortcuts, personalized wallpaper, and many other features. In terms of functionality, it is equipped with a high-quality sonar imaging system, a cruise charting page, and a panoramic view of the entire environment.


As an industry leader, Garmin always strives to take navigation to the next level and its echoMAP CHIRP series is a true testament to this. The echoMAP 63cv is reasonably priced without compromising any feature that you'd need in a marine chartplotter.


This is one of the best chartplotters that also double up as an outstanding fish finder. It is exactly what you need if you want to improve your fishing skills while sailing. Using the CHIRP DualBeam Plus sonar it offers two frequencies that can cover a larger area while offering accurate information and readings.


The Humminbird Side Imaging gives you a 180-degree view of the underwater environment. You can either zoom in or out through the touchscreen to get a clearer view of what's going on around you. This is unquestionably one of the most versatile and reliable chartplotters. It's designed to enhance both your sailing and fishing experience.


If you want a seriously high-performing chartplotter that offers nothing but the best full HD images and very accurate information, look no further than this device. It offers full sunlight readability, impeccable clarity, and the viewing angles are wide. This device offers loads of sail-specific information and pre-race guidance that every sailor, both pro and a beginner, will appreciate.


It shows the wind speed, wind angle, the surrounding environment, and every other information meant to make your sailing adventures more rewarding. It also comes with a mobile app that works seamlessly with your mobile devices. That's not all; this device offers superior clarity and sunlight readability even when wearing polarized sunglasses. It also offers one of the best underwater views today. In essence, this is a serious marine chartplotter that will never let you down during your adventures.


To this end, we have to note that the importance of using the best chartplotters for your sailing exploits can never be ignored. In addition to enhancing your safety, a chartplotter helps you in navigating the waters, and in detecting various objects both on top of the water and underwater such as submerged icebergs. 041b061a72