Originally Posted by Jon Hacking
Hi Cape - & Welcome to Cruisers Forum! Our radar recently got zorched by lightening, so we're on the market for a new one. These "broadband" radars have come out since we last looked, so I don't know much about them. What can you tell us? What fresh view do we need? What are their strengths? Their weaknesses? What do you like/not like? Thanks!
I love mine. It is intended to help you navigate in tight quaters in fog or dark.
It is very high resolution (approx 1 meter) which means in practice if there is a pair of ATON's at the beginning of a narrow channel, I can see them both side by each rather than a single
blob. It also has incredibly close minimum range, essentially just past your gunwales. So in my example and my experience, as I pass thru the ATON pair, I can see a retun on port and starboard sides, each say 30 ft off my broadsides.
The 3G radar is very low power
so it is safe as a cell phone
, but it is continuous wave as opposed to pulsed so it is integrating the energy from returns constantly. That also means it has great visibility in clutter. Military fire control radars employ similar processing and waveform approaches.
Where people get frustrated with missed expectations is that due to its low power and size, it doesn't see targets at ranges much beyond say 8 miles and fairly large ones at that. This radar is for close quater navigation
. You are not looking for birds for fishing
spots. This radar let's you see anything that can hit you or vice versa in a harbor or marina in plenty of time.
It is capable of rain storm detection. You can adjust rain sensivity and sea clutter sensitivity separately. Very good automatic operation. Again on min range, I can see my own wake just to emphasize how close in this operates. For big ships, I rely on AIS
returns from my Standard Horizon GX-2150 radio
using 0183 interface to the HDS-10.
I use the Simrad
RC42 heading sensor to enable radar overlay onto my GPS chart screen
. I have nuns and cans marked as gps waypoints, but when navigating in the dark, I can see where the marker is Now in this tide and I steer to miss the radar return not the waypoint.
The design was done by Simrad I believe with a legacy connection to Kongsberg in Norway
. Branded both as Simrad and Lowrance.
I wish the sonar worked this well....