I think AIS
is fantastic. I have the Raymarine
E7 and the AIS
650 and a separate aerial on my top spreader. I did all the study and did this for a reason and this is why;
I think Vesper products are very good, however I tried the splitter and changed because there are two issues;
1. Signal strength is way lower than with a separate 'AIS tuned' aerial. I am certain of this because I tracked my yacht with Marine
Traffic.com and with exactEarth satellite
and the splitter version was poor and the separate aerial fantastic. I was satellite
tracked - with Class B and 2w easily. I saw ships 100nm away.
2. The splitter shares the VHF
aerial. When I spotted a ship about to run me down and called them on VHF
part way through the conversation the AIS wanted to send out a signal. As it could not I got a loud warning on my E7 plotter "failed AIS". Both Vesper and Raymarine
acknowledged that this could not be fixed.
I bought personal AIS beacons for my crew. So if they fall in they will be tracked on my chart plotter and found quickly by me or my crew quickly, regardless of sea state, day or night. Expensive but surely worth every penny?
Interesting to watch what other do who have AIS, have a look at the lower yacht, yep the Beneteau
50 did not hit but was sailing over rocks;
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