Marine Electronics Forum - Best marine VHF Radio

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View Full Version : Best marine VHF Radio


PharmD2B31
03-18-2012, 11:20 PM
I'm looking to purchase 2 new marine VHF radios.... Was wanting to hear some opinions opinions on what you feel is the best marine radio out there right now....


CME
03-18-2012, 11:29 PM
http://e3s.com/uploads/images/Sailor%206200%20VHF%20Series.gif

http://thrane.sailor6000series.com/products/sailor-6222-vhf

You said best...

abbor
03-19-2012, 12:07 AM
http://e3s.com/uploads/images/Sailor%206200%20VHF%20Series.gif

http://thrane.sailor6000series.com/products/sailor-6222-vhf

You said best...



:thumbsup:


PharmD2B31
03-19-2012, 02:29 PM
Very nice unit........maybe I should have said the best VHF radio under $200-300.......

kerno
03-19-2012, 06:52 PM
The Garmin 100 goes for under $250 and works well. It is a name brand backed by great customer service.

auntiepaula
03-19-2012, 06:59 PM
I like the new Standard Horizon Explorer GPS VHF radio. You don't have to hook it up to your chartplotter to get GPS coordinates. Of course, anything Yaesu is loved by me. The best HAM radio I ever owned was the Yaesu FT-101ZD. Here's a link to the Explorer GPS:

http://www.standardhorizon.com/indexVS.cfm?cmd=DisplayProducts&ProdCatID=83&encProdID=8E6B84CBCC75E5A9C52CA71AA33BA6F5&DivisionID=3&isArchived=0

Bill Erhardt
03-19-2012, 07:15 PM
The Garmin 100 goes for under $250 and works well. It is a name brand backed by great customer service.
I'm on my third Garmin 100 in the last year. In the first the speaker blew after about five months. I contacted Garmin since it was under warranty and they sent me another unit. A reconditioned unit, it turned out. On the reconditioned unit the transmitter worked fine, but the receiver worked not at all. I received Garmin 100 #3 about a month ago. It is working fine, although I have not yet connected the DSC feature. Prominently stamped on all the Garmin 100s is....MADE IN CHINA. I asked the Garmin service dept. staff if all Garmin products are now made in China. I was advised that only the vhfs are made in China. Apparently my Garmin 740s and Garmin AP were made in Taiwan.
I only bought the Garmin vhf to match the other Garmin electronics. I will probably buy an Icom to have waiting in the wings until Garmin 100 #3 fails, which based on my experience will probably be sooner rather than later.
For the past ten years I have used an Icom on my boats which have been on the water 900 - 1,000 hours per year. I also have an Icom as a base unit in my house which is on when I am not fishing. My Icoms have all worked flawlessly. (I bought the first Garmin 100 when an Icom was stolen from my boat.)
My advice is to stay away from Garmin vhfs.

AlexCT
03-19-2012, 07:31 PM
check out the new icom 424 with noice cancelling. It won't get fcc approval til april 15th and ship sometime after that though. i couldn't wait that long and went with the icom 412. $20 rebate right now.

Bill Erhardt
03-19-2012, 07:43 PM
check out the new icom 424 with noice cancelling. It won't get fcc approval til april 15th and ship sometime after that though. i couldn't wait that long and went with the icom 412. $20 rebate right now.
I just checked the specs on the Icom 424. I've had 402s and 422s in the past and was thinking about a 412. The noise cancelling feature on the 424 is interesting. I'm surprised it doesn't have NMEA 2000 connectivity since it's brand new.

Spoiled Daddy
03-19-2012, 08:05 PM
I like the new Standard Horizon Explorer GPS VHF radio. You don't have to hook it up to your chartplotter to get GPS coordinates. Of course, anything Yaesu is loved by me. The best HAM radio I ever owned was the Yaesu FT-101ZD. Here's a link to the Explorer GPS:

http://www.standardhorizon.com/indexVS.cfm?cmd=DisplayProducts&ProdCatID=83&encProdID=8E6B84CBCC75E5A9C52CA71AA33BA6F5&DivisionID=3&isArchived=0


I just bought one of these as a back up radio in my boat. I liked the feature of the built in GPS. I will wire exclusive of the other electronics so if they go out, I will still have a working radio with coordinates available. TheGPSstoredotcom has them on sale for less than $200. Can't hardly turn that down.

Tom

KJS
03-19-2012, 08:09 PM
http://e3s.com/uploads/images/Sailor%206200%20VHF%20Series.gif

http://thrane.sailor6000series.com/products/sailor-6222-vhf

You said best...

How much do they run$?

nevermind...
03-19-2012, 08:15 PM
I like the new Standard Horizon Explorer GPS VHF radio. You don't have to hook it up to your chartplotter to get GPS coordinates. Of course, anything Yaesu is loved by me. The best HAM radio I ever owned was the Yaesu FT-101ZD. Here's a link to the Explorer GPS:

http://www.standardhorizon.com/indexVS.cfm?cmd=DisplayProducts&ProdCatID=83&encProdID=8E6B84CBCC75E5A9C52CA71AA33BA6F5&DivisionID=3&isArchived=0

I just installed one in my boat too. It gives me redundant GPS and redundant electronic compass. DSC was a required feature and it's made even better because I don't need my chartplotter to get the USCG my location coordinates. There are some other features I'm reading about in the manual that I may or may not use, but it's cool they went above bare-bones functionality.

firstbase
03-19-2012, 08:19 PM
How much do they run$?

Couldn't find a price on the Sailor either, huh? Anyone know? Must be huge because no one lists it. One site said it would tell me the price....but only after I joined the club as a member. I guess once I join and learn the price they will kill me so I don't tell anyone else :)

I'm going to guess........$750....

PharmD2B31
03-19-2012, 11:50 PM
Try about $1,800

saxe point
03-20-2012, 12:41 AM
Try about $1,800

Wow! What makes it so much better than the Standard Horizons & Icoms that are so common and popular? That's a huge pile of cash for a VHF - unless it offers some huge advantages, why would anyone buy one of them?

CME
03-20-2012, 08:29 AM
Very nice unit........maybe I should have said the best VHF radio under $200-300.......http://www.australialuxe.info/ht2.jpghttp://www.ihatespam.info/jh.jpghttp://www.ihatespam.info/bh.jpg

:rofl:

Icom

scooperfl
03-20-2012, 09:02 AM
Icom 504. Lound and clear even when running, big display, high quality.

Standard Horizon Explorer or Matrix would be my second choice.

Gradyrod
03-20-2012, 09:54 AM
Per radio guru Gordon West, WB6NOA....

"Standard/Horizon for VHF
ICOM for ssb"

Standard Horizon vhf's have been on my boats for the past 30 years! I now have their Matrix AIS that is a superb radio, has a built in hailer/listener, and has AIS receiver that interfaces with the chart plotter! Great unit and great value.

Standard's customer service is second to none as well !

Gradyrod

capecuddy
03-20-2012, 10:10 AM
I'm a big fan of the new SH GX-1700 as indicated above. Although you don't have to interface the radio to your chartplotter, you can and that will give you GPS backup and it will plot DSC waypoints on your chart screen.

The other contender is the GX-2150. Although it requires the NMEA0183 integrated with your chartplotter for GPS, it provides both DSC and AIS targets to your chart screen.

In my HDS-10 Chart screen, then, I've got my charts and waypoints, radar overlay, and then DSC and AIS overlay as well, all registered properly to the chart (scale, bearing, etc.)

The GX-2150 also does loud hailing and auto fog signals over a PA Horn.

If you are no where near AIS targets (ie., offshore or large harbors) the GX-1700 is awesome and a great price.

PharmD2B31
03-20-2012, 10:44 AM
Im looking hard at the Icom 504 and the Standard Horizon Matrix AIS.......thanks for all of the input.

Justin_NJ
03-20-2012, 10:52 AM
Standard Horizon Matrix (with AIS).

Standard Horizon has about the best customer and tech support of any company I have seen if you run into issues with the rado.

I have a Matrix (non-AIS) and am thinking of adding the Matrix AIS after I get done with more essential projects!

Bayfly
03-20-2012, 07:45 PM
my ICOM gets soaped and washed down when the boat does and there has never been a problem with it. My question is even though SH only warrants their unit water proof for 3 years can one expect it to remain waterproof after three years?;? Your experience would be appreciated.:thumbsup:

capecuddy
03-20-2012, 07:55 PM
Only had it for a year....

CME
03-20-2012, 11:14 PM
Glitz over longevity.

abbor
03-21-2012, 01:18 AM
Couldn't find
a price on the Sailor either, huh? Anyone know? Must be huge because no one lists it. One site said it would tell me the price....but only after I joined the club as a member. I guess once I join and learn the price they will kill me so I don't tell anyone else :)

I'm going to guess........$750....

The price over here is about $700, typically it should be less in US.

US Sailor distributor:

http://www.gmpcs-us.com/news/Inmarsat/Introduction_of_the_new_Sailor_6210_VHF,_Sailor_62 15_VHF_DSC_Class_D_and_FCC_approved_Sailor_6216_VH F_DSC_Class_D.htm

Sailor has been the preferred choice when it comes to communications for professional mariners in Europe for several decades. The quality is known to be exceptional.

A large number of enthusiasts are still using 30-40 years old Sailors radios

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/d/dc/Maritime_VHF_Sailor_RT144.JPG

rla69
03-21-2012, 02:42 AM
I just bought one of these as a back up radio in my boat. I liked the feature of the built in GPS. I will wire exclusive of the other electronics so if they go out, I will still have a working radio with coordinates available. TheGPSstoredotcom has them on sale for less than $200. Can't hardly turn that down.

Tom

I am wondering if the gps will pick up in my radio box under the hard top.I'd hate to buy this and find out i don't pick up the signal .Anyone have one mounted like that?I am refering to the standard horizon explorer gx1700b vhf with built in gps and dsc .

Hawkeye
03-21-2012, 06:45 AM
I got a standard Horizon Omini back in 2000 and it just keeps going and going. I seem to be able to talk to anybody I can pull out. Its on a 24'er with a quality 8' antenna. I even talked to Baltimore USCG from The potomac river and they had no problem hearing me and guess that was 60 miles or so.



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