FWIW....I upgraded about 1 year ago to Furuno
NavNet3D from NavNet1 and the navigation
instruments from Raymarine
ST60 to ST70. The AutoPilot
X10. This is all on a FP 43' Cat.
I've got the MFD12 inside, the MFD8 at the helm
, and the DRS4D at the first set of speaders. I re-used a GP320B GPS
for the Furuno
. (1) ST70 inside and (1) at helm
next to the ST70 AP controller. At the time no N2K instruments were available so the wind
, speed, temp are using the Raymarine transducer pods. I've also got a Furuno DFF1 and depth
, speed, temp on the other hull
. I used a generic Ethernet hub, couldn't stand the extra $600 for the Furuno model.
I'll withhold comments about why NMEA
chose a CAN bus over Ethernet (but it was stupid, IMO). I've experienced some of the pains of NavNet3D 'growing up' along with the various vendors trying to lock you into their equipment
while 'claiming' N2K compliant. It's all pretty stable now, although Airmar WeatherCaster software
can cause the MFD to reboot. (I'll have to report that to Furuno.) Raymarine decided to make the transducer pods NOT N2K compliant, hence Furuno won't display wind
without a N2K to 0183 gateway, which I just installed the new Actisense unit. I just added an Airmar G2183 GPS
(I like redundancy) to the N2K network, Furuno and Raymarine both have no problems with it.
The NavNet3D radar is fantastic. I will never do a night crossing without radar. I didn't have ARPA on the NavNet1 (a $1200 option) and it's included in the NavNet3D. It uses the compass
from the X10 on the N2K and it's great to be able to see not only how far away a vessel is, but their direction and speed/intersect time, etc. My first mate won't let me go down to rest at night without setting up the radar screen
so she can watch/see all the vessels around us. I've 'tiptoed' thru 18 shrimpers in one night and knowing their heading/speed 3 or more miles out certainly makes adjusting course easy. Although the vector charts
are cool, the raster charts
work well for me, I grew up on them.
All in all, the NavNet3D is getting more stable/better with every update. The features are wonderful even though some are just toys. If I did it today, I would look hard for all N2K transducers - wind, depth, speed, temp. There are still a couple of configuration advantages to sticking with the Chartplotter
brand for the transducers, but it'll work well if you stray on brands also. Oh yeah, I also have the Actisense N2K to USB gateway so I can 'watch' the network. Airmar WeatherCaster actually works thru the Actisense, so maybe these companies finally starting to move off their proprietary requirement and utilize the standards as envisioned by NMEA
That's my story....