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Old 29-12-2012, 15:08   #1
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Feedback on Simrad NSS, NSE, NSO?

There have been a few threads touching on this series of Simrad plotters, but I'd like to get a thread started dedicated to feedback from users of these systems.

So, if you have one of these plotters, what do you think? Are you happy? Any problems with it? How is the quality of the Navionics charts? What about technical support? Any bugs? Any hangs? What were you using before and how does it compare?

I'm considering this gear for my new boat and am very interested in direct user feedback. I'm coming off Furuno NN3D with which I'm very disappointed. I'm just not yet convinced anything is any better.

Thanks in advance,

Peter
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Old 29-12-2012, 16:20   #2
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Re: Feedback on Simrad NSS, NSE, NSO?

I wrote you a long reply on the iPad app but the app is broken and wouldnt send it. Here's the short version. I have a NNS 7, NNS 12', AIA, G4, Weather, Sonic Hub. I had Garmin before. The Simrad is far easier, radar better. Get it. It's awesome. I do like the Garmin charts better. They are more like real charts.
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Old 29-12-2012, 16:40   #3
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Re: Feedback on Simrad NSS, NSE, NSO?

I have the NSS 12. Previously I had a Northstar M121. In many ways the Simrad is better, especially if you also have a Simrad autopilot.

But the C-Map charts the Northstar used were far better, compared to the similarly priced Navionics gold.. And why on earth Simrad use the silly micro SD cards on such a large item is beyond me.

There's only one card slot too, where the much cheaper Northstar had 2.

Despite what has been frequently posted on this forum, there is no way you can use the NSS without using the touchscreen. So it gets fingermarks all over it.

I like this plotter, but it could be better IMO.
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Old 29-12-2012, 16:58   #4
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I've delivered a few boats. So I used a selection of Garmin, Simrad ( NSE) and Raymarine equipment and only one with Furuno. I've owned boats with Garmin, Simrad and ray gear.

The new range of Simrad , ie post 2006 is in my opinion very good, the autopilots are very good , though I would rate Raymarines highly with Garmins last. Like many I don't particularly rate the Navionics charts and I do like the Garmin blue charts. The one experience I had of Furuno NN3D was like many lacklustre and their initial nonsense with European charts didnt help.

I rate all companies HD radars well. I'd find it hard to critique one over the other. I have only brief exposure to the broadband radar and not the latest model , so ill keep my comments to myself on that.

I liked the construction of the NSE, the carved from granite feel. Good silicon rubber buttons etc. radios are high quality too. In Europe Simrad is quite pricey equipment. I put it as Garmin, Raymarine, Simrad, Furuno in ascending price.

My one experience with Simrad is that while chandlers might have some Raymaine equipment , very little Simrad equipment is stocked. As to tech support I've always found Raymarines support direct to be very good. I've found the same with Furuno. My experience with Simrad and Garmin wasn't as good , adequate but not top class. I do know the Rays support in the US doesn't seem as good.

Today, in terms of leading the pack, with a wide variety of devices, good integration and open systems the toss up is between Simrad and Raymarine, with Simrad having the edge and Ray catching up very fast indeed. Garmin have been very slow to expand the line and release new product or refresh some ageing components. Furuno seems stuck in a NN3D loop

Dave
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Old 29-12-2012, 17:44   #5
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Re: Feedback on Simrad NSS, NSE, NSO?

I have a NSS7 that I got primarily as a display for the 3G radar. It is very intuitive which was an important consideration as my wife is not very tech-oriented. We both really like the touch screen. The main reason I went with Simrad rather than Ray or Garmin was for the broadband radar and have not regretted it, mainly for the low power draw. IIRC the MFD draws about .4 amps and the radome about 1.6 amps. You can leave the radar on "standby", drawing next to nothing, then tap the screen and it is instantly on. Resolution is good to about 6-8 miles which is plenty for the way we use it. Anything farther away than that I either don't worry about or can see on AIS.
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Old 29-12-2012, 18:05   #6
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Re: Feedback on Simrad NSS, NSE, NSO?

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Originally Posted by Safari38LH View Post
I wrote you a long reply on the iPad app but the app is broken and wouldnt send it. Here's the short version. I have a NNS 7, NNS 12', AIA, G4, Weather, Sonic Hub. I had Garmin before. The Simrad is far easier, radar better. Get it. It's awesome. I do like the Garmin charts better. They are more like real charts.
Thanks. Are you using the built-in charts, or did you spring for the paid Navionics Gold or Platinum charts? The built-in charts look weak, with depths only show up to about 30'
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Old 28-01-2013, 22:45   #7
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Re: Feedback on Simrad NSS, NSE, NSO?

Looking for s/w to pic SIMRAD HD Radar data off the SIMRAD ENET network for display via a PC. Any suggestions?
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Old 29-01-2013, 03:49   #8
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Re: Feedback on Simrad NSS, NSE, NSO?

The SIMRAD NSE has a screen capture option in System settings ( I believe) saves onto the card

Dave
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Old 29-01-2013, 03:59   #9
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Re: Feedback on Simrad NSS, NSE, NSO?

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Originally Posted by goboatingnow View Post
The SIMRAD NSE has a screen capture option in System settings ( I believe) saves onto the card

Dave
Actually there's an internal hard drive. You can manage files and move to cards or to a USB flash drive (there's also a USB port with waterproof cover).

I recently acquired a B&G Zeus Z8, and stencil branded Simrad NSE. I am extremely pleased with it (although the boat's still on the hard and haven't used it in the water yet). The solidity and quality of the hardware is remarkable; equal to or maybe better than the old milspec-type Raymarine RL80's, which was always the standard as far as I was concerned. The case is massive die-cast aluminum, front and back, all the buttons are high quality silicon rubber -- it's just really nice -- looks like something stolen off a jet fighter. The screens are remarkable, too (I think screen technology has come a long way just in the last couple of years).

The NSS (I'm waiting for a back-ordered Zeus T8) has a plastic housing so the hardware is cheapened and less nice.
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Old 29-01-2013, 04:46   #10
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Re: Feedback on Simrad NSS, NSE, NSO?

Quote:
Originally Posted by twistedtree View Post
There have been a few threads touching on this series of Simrad plotters, but I'd like to get a thread started dedicated to feedback from users of these systems.

So, if you have one of these plotters, what do you think? Are you happy? Any problems with it? How is the quality of the Navionics charts? What about technical support? Any bugs? Any hangs? What were you using before and how does it compare?

I'm considering this gear for my new boat and am very interested in direct user feedback. I'm coming off Furuno NN3D with which I'm very disappointed. I'm just not yet convinced anything is any better.

Thanks in advance,

Peter
Hello Peter:

We installed the NSS-7 on our Bayfield 29C last year. This was our first season with both the boat, and the chartplotter. My past experience with navigational "aids" was a Garmin Zumo 550 on our touring bike, so in all honesty, I have nothing to compare the NSS-7 to. But....

Both my wife and I found it very easy to use, easy to navigate through and around, using both the touchscreen and the knobs. The screen clarity is very good, and it is easy to read in all conditions. Our very first trip with the boat and the chartplotter saw us cruise the north channel of lake Huron, then sailing across to Michigan and down to Windsor, ON, or over 500+ miles in all types of weather and lake conditions.

We will be installing the radar this spring, although we had purchased the radar with the chartplotter, we just did not have the $$$ to mount it last year, so we are looking forward to having the radar use as well.

I would have dug a little deeper into my pockets and purchased the NSS-8 instead of the NSS-7 had I known that the 8 allows you to hook up an extra screen down below for instance, the 7 does not give you this option. It would have been nice to have a flatscreen down below just for convenience sake, especially with the radar hooked up, I am assuming that I would be able to "watch" the weather from down below when docked/moored. The chartplotter is installed on the pedestal guard.

But, all in all, from our perspective, no issues so far, easy to use in all conditions. As mentioned above, we sail the Great Lakes, not the briny seas....but we'll get there someday....soon I hope.

Rather long winded, but I hope this helps. Bottom line, I would buy Simrad again, but I would spring for bigger than the NSS-7.

gunk
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Old 30-01-2013, 19:23   #11
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Re: Feedback on Simrad NSS, NSE, NSO?

Gunk,

Have you checked out the Simrad Go-Free?

GoFree

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Old 30-01-2013, 19:24   #12
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Re: Feedback on Simrad NSS, NSE, NSO?

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Originally Posted by captainjim47 View Post
Looking for s/w to pic SIMRAD HD Radar data off the SIMRAD ENET network for display via a PC. Any suggestions?
The last time I looked into this (about a year ago) the software existed but was something like $1200.
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Old 30-01-2013, 20:04   #13
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Re: Feedback on Simrad NSS, NSE, NSO?

Thanks for all the feedback. I bought an NSO+GPS+Monitor kit to try out and am sold on it. Short of a major blow up, I'll be outfitting my new boat with all Simrad gear + Coastal Explorer.
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Old 31-01-2013, 03:52   #14
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Re: Feedback on Simrad NSS, NSE, NSO?

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Gunk,

Have you checked out the Simrad Go-Free?

GoFree

Thanks for the heads up Mike, I wasn't aware it was available. We'll be heading to Annapolis this fall for the big show, if I can hold myself back over the summer, we'll pick one up there. Geesh, I have to start cruising the net a bit more to see what's come out.

gunk
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Old 31-01-2013, 06:06   #15
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Re: Feedback on Simrad NSS, NSE, NSO?

The unfortunate thing with the go-free is that it only works with the NSS, not the NSE or NSO. Simrad say there will be furture support for the NSE and NSO, but that it will be display-only. It kinda makes sense since translating ipad touch gestures to a non-touch MFD si much trickier that mapping to another touch screen.
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