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Smal boat owners - GPS/Sonar - Combo or stand alone units?

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Smal boat owners - GPS/Sonar - Combo or stand alone units?

Old 03-18-2007, 12:58 PM
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Default Smal boat owners - GPS/Sonar - Combo or stand alone units?

Which do you prefer? I usually stay away from combo units in anything (fax/copiers/scanners, etc.) when one breaks down and needs repair you lose all.

But I have a small open boat and looking at the Garmin 492c & 498c. I currently have an old Lowrance X65 B&W sonar and it works OK. I am going to be putting a small chartplotter onboard and the 492c fits nicley, but I'm thinking that for another $50 I can get the 498c with sonar.

Are these combo units dependable? How limiting is the split screen? I know that two larger screens are probably better but in pratical everyday use, looking for a small spot of bottom structure in 70" of water is it easier to have both on the same screen?


Thanks, Rob
Old 03-18-2007, 01:07 PM
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Default RE: Smal boat owners - GPS/Sonar - Combo or stand alone units?

I have a garmin 276c with the GSD20 sounder and a furuno fcv-600L depth finder.

I would keep your old lowrance and install the garmin unit with the built in sounder if anything you always have a backup.
Old 03-18-2007, 08:00 PM
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Default Re: Smal boat owners - GPS/Sonar - Combo or stand alone units?

Garmin 498 internal antenna. Charts built in. Great unit.
Old 03-18-2007, 08:12 PM
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Default RE: Smal boat owners - GPS/Sonar - Combo or stand alone units?

To me, it would depend on what the boat is used for. If you just cruise and don't fish much, I'd buy a combo unit. If you only flats fish and don't look for structure, again I'd go combo unit. If you do any offshore fishing where you may have to navigate to a waypoint and also look for structure while approaching, I'd go seperate units.

I mostly flats fish, but do run offshore sometimes. I'd always had combo units until I bought my current boat, which came with seperate gps and sonar. I must say, when I'm going to a waypoint to dig a grouper out, it is great to be able to clearly see both the waypoint and the structure when I get close.

I have a Garmin 182 which is the same size as the 492/498. The screen on those isn't very big for just the gps, let alone the sonar. I get spoiled at work since we have Garmin 3010's and the screens are huge and you can easily split the screen.

I had considered a new Garmin 2206, but decided everything I have works just fine, so why spend the money. But, I also decided I wanted to keep the seperate units. So I will get a 492c when my 182 dies. I have the same sonar as you. Yeah, it would be nice to have color, but I get along just fine with what I have.

I have had great luck with everything Garmin I have and do own.

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