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Simrad NSS Questions

Old 02-27-2012, 10:00 AM
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Default Simrad NSS Questions

I’m on the verge of switching out my electronics and am looking at the Simrad NSS7 and NSS8 units. Checked out both at a local fishing show yesterday and was completely impressed with the processor speed. Zooming in and out on detailed charts was very impressive. One concern I have is with the built in echosounders. How will the echosounder performance of these units, which max out at 250 w peak to peak and 31 W RMS compare with Furuno FCV585 which pushes 1000 W (I assume this is RMS?) Is this unit using different technology that somehow allows it to see better while transmitting less power? Prevailing thought has been that more power = capability for more clarity and depth. Has the technology that Simrad is using changed this?

If I would like to network an NSS8 and NSS7, do I need any additional black boxes? In addition to connecting the two units together, I would also have a Standard Horizon DSC VHF radio to connect as well as Garmin TR-1 Gold autopilot.

All use is in freshwater. Typical use April through June is in water up to 50 feet deep; July and August water up to 300 feet deep but mostly focusing on the top 50-80 feet (trolling). Initial transducer will most likely be either a B60 or B164 through hull. With the low output power of the built in sounder, can this unit make full use of a B164? If it can, let’s say I start out with B60 and would like to add a second transducer later (possibly even step up to TM270W), is this possible in the Simrad network so both units would have access to either transducer? Any recommendations on transducers?

Lastly, if anyone could share some real world screenshots of the echosounder in action it would be very much appreciated.

Last edited by ZX2050; 02-27-2012 at 10:04 AM. Reason: clarify
Old 02-27-2012, 10:36 AM
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I just finished installing an NSS8. I use the embedded FF (moving over from a Furuno 620 connected to an Airmar TM P66) and have it connected to an Airmar TM260 (1k unit). I fish exclusively in saltwater and have marked fish on wrecks at 800' and hold the bottom at 1200 haven't been deeper as of yet. As to networking the NSS7/8 each have one network port so if your going to add weather or a BB sonar in the future you will have to purchase a Lowrance NEP-2 network expander port $250.00. Simnet/N2k will add cost to your install. If you use a N2k backbone you'll need a Lowrance N2k starter kit. As to NMEA 0183 connectivity the Simrads have one talker and one listener could cause some issues with your SH epecically if you use the SH GX2100/50 series VHF (the need for HS/standbard speed NMEA 0183 ports) that couple with the need for NMEA 0183 for your TR1. What thst means is one NNS series will feed the radio and the other the TR1 Gladiator. You can turn on network bridging and share info from both units via the N2k backbone.

The NSS series is terrific I have my connected to my Garmin 740 they are good partners. I did the install myself Simrads documentation was good ... no surprises.







WM-2 Sirius Weather Module (connected via Network port) and SonicHub connected via Garmin N2k backbone



Weather
Old 02-27-2012, 10:41 AM
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The technology used in NSS is different than the competitors, they have a more sensitive receiver and will produce similar or better results with a lower output power. The 31W rms specified is not correct, the correct number is 250W rms, same as BSM-1.

NSS is better than FCV-620 at deep waters when using the same transducer, I have both.

B60 is excellent for trolling. I have two boats with B60 and NSS and Lowrance HDS (same sonar module as NSS).

You only need an Ethernet cable to network two NSS unit. To get synchronization of the backlighting between the units I think you will have to network them with NMEA 2000 in addition to Ethernet. For your fishing you should considering adding a LSS-1 StructureSan block box high resolution sonar. LSS-1 has three Ethernet ports so you won't need an additional Ethernet switch.

You can run the sounder module (with the connected transducer) in one NSS from another NSS. The sounder modules will work the same way as two standalone BSM-1 blackbox modules would have worked. Both sounder modules can be used from both NSS units with full flexibility.

I don't have any NSS screenshots at my computer, but I have several stored at my NSS unit. Next time I go to the winter storage I try to remember to copy some of them out.

Here is a screen cap from a HDS-5 with B60, depth is 45' (15m). The sounder module is identical to NSS.

Old 02-28-2012, 08:08 AM
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Very nice install work Tom.
The short demo’s I did at the show last weekend included a Garmin 5208, which is the direction I thought I would be going for plotter. The Simrad was noticeably faster on chart redraw than the Garmin. I’m curious if you have compared it to the 740 and your thoughts on comparing the GPS & charts of the two units? I believe Garmin allows you to shade shallow water hazard areas in red, can this be done on the Simrad?
My install will be one unit in dash and the other above it mounted in a gimbal bracket on top of the dash. One of the reasons I’m leaning toward both units from Simrad is I’d like to be able to switch from plotter on top when running to sounder on top when trolling. That’s not necessarily set in stone. I’m wondering if you didn’t have the 740 right now, would you buy Garmin or Simrad for your second unit?
Screen shot on the Lowrance shows some surface noise. Is the Simrad any better at rejecting some of this noise?
Old 02-28-2012, 08:33 AM
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The surface noise can be removed using the manual controls associated with the sonar. Those functionalities are good and easy to use. The Garmin 740 is much faster than the Garmin 5000 series and is faster than the NSS8 screen redraws. The draw back to the 740 is it is not networkable so it doesn't have the expandiblity options the Simrad does. I think the 740 menu options are easier to navigate versus the drop down menus of the NSS8.

Here's a video of the 740 in action using G2 Vision Charts. This will give you a good idea what I'm talking about.

http://bluewaterpirate.phanfare.com/4683060_5180941

With all that said I would go with two NSS series chartplotters. I've had my Garmin 740 on my boat going on two years so it's an old friend with many hours of offshore fishing on it. The NSS sonar is much better than the embedded 740 sonar.

Last edited by bluewaterpirate; 02-28-2012 at 08:55 AM.
Old 02-28-2012, 11:11 AM
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ZX -

Have you checked out Furuno's new Navnet touch screen? When I saw it at the Miami boat show, it seems even faster than the NSS. Worth checking out anyway, www.navnet.com. Don't think you can go wrong with NSS or the new Furuno.

Justin
Old 02-28-2012, 11:11 AM
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Originally Posted by bluewaterpirate View Post
The NSS sonar is much better than the embedded 740 sonar.
Ain't that the truth.
Old 03-03-2012, 09:14 AM
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Will I need additional networking components to connect the two units, as well as VHF and Auto Pilot, or does everything I need come in the box?
Old 03-03-2012, 08:04 PM
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Originally Posted by Justin009 View Post
ZX -

Have you checked out Furuno's new Navnet touch screen? When I saw it at the Miami boat show, it seems even faster than the NSS. Worth checking out anyway, www.navnet.com. Don't think you can go wrong with NSS or the new Furuno.

Justin
Unfortunately the new furunos are $5600 for the 9 inch. They are definitely a luxury item!
Old 03-04-2012, 03:52 AM
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Originally Posted by ZX2050 View Post
Will I need additional networking components to connect the two units, as well as VHF and Auto Pilot, or does everything I need come in the box?
To connect two NSS units you need a Lowrance/Simrad Ethernet cable, to be able to synchronize the backlighting you also need to network the two units using NMEA 2000. You will then need a Lowrance NMEA 2000 starter kit.

Your VHF probably has NMEA 183, so no special cables are needed for connecting this.

If you are going to connect a Simrad AP24 pilot you will need a SimNet to Micro-C adapter cable, a NMEA 2000 T-coupler and a free SimNet joiner socket.
Old 03-04-2012, 08:18 PM
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Originally Posted by abbor View Post
To connect two NSS units you need a Lowrance/Simrad Ethernet cable, to be able to synchronize the backlighting you also need to network the two units using NMEA 2000. You will then need a Lowrance NMEA 2000 starter kit.

Your VHF probably has NMEA 183, so no special cables are needed for connecting this.

If you are going to connect a Simrad AP24 pilot you will need a SimNet to Micro-C adapter cable, a NMEA 2000 T-coupler and a free SimNet joiner socket.
Will the older AP22 auto pilot work in the same manner ?
Old 03-05-2012, 12:08 AM
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With AP22 you will have to use NMEA 183 also for the pilot, no special cable is needed.
Old 03-18-2012, 07:14 PM
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[quote=bluewaterpirate;4401833]I just finished installing an NSS8. I use the embedded FF (moving over from a Furuno 620 connected to an Airmar TM P66) and have it connected to an Airmar TM260 (1k unit). I fish exclusively in saltwater and have marked fish on wrecks at 800' and hold the bottom at 1200 haven't been deeper as of yet. As to networking the NSS7/8 each have one network port so if your going to add weather or a BB sonar in the future you will have to purchase a Lowrance NEP-2 network expander port $250.00. Simnet/N2k will add cost to your install. If you use a N2k backbone you'll need a Lowrance N2k starter kit. As to NMEA 0183 connectivity the Simrads have one talker and one listener could cause some issues with your SH epecically if you use the SH GX2100/50 series VHF (the need for HS/standbard speed NMEA 0183 ports) that couple with the need for NMEA 0183 for your TR1. What thst means is one NNS series will feed the radio and the other the TR1 Gladiator. You can turn on network bridging and share info from both units via the N2k backbone.

The NSS series is terrific I have my connected to my Garmin 740 they are good partners. I did the install myself Simrads documentation was good ... no surprises.


Ok, so how do I build the N2K Backbone. I'd like both units to have access to the VHF and AP. The VHF is a SH GX1500S, which uses NMEA0183, same as the TR1 Gold AP. I will also be adding an external GPS antenna, most likely the GS15. What are the components I will need (ports,cables, terminators, etc)?

Any one have an idea of the functionality I will get for the TR1 autopilot through the Simrad NSS?
Old 03-19-2012, 06:49 AM
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Here's what you'll need instructions are included with the starter kit.

http://www.boemarine.com/Garmin_NMEA...-010-11442-00/

As to sharing to sharing AP and VHF data between the units, you'll turn on network bridging on the NSS7/8 and they will share the NMEA 0183 data being passed by the VHF and AP via the N2k network. The GS15 is an N2k device so you'll need an additional t-connector (not included in the atarter kit).
Old 03-19-2012, 05:44 PM
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Thanks Tom.

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