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Radar: (HD or Digital) Does it matter?

Old 03-01-2015, 04:31 PM
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Default Radar: (HD or Digital) Does it matter?

I fish offshore 20 miles or so. I go out early when its still dark, didn't really use radar much on my old boat. In fact hardly ever. For the times I'd use it and for only seeing other boats leaving in dark of morning running out, is it worth extra money on HD or is new digital almost as good?
I'm talking about a dome 18" Raymarine. Nothing fancy to start with.
Old 03-02-2015, 07:29 AM
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The 18" HD (which I have) gives you color (with better target discrimination) and dual range capability. I find the dual range very useful running in a ship's channel where I might encounter a kayak or a carrier, and offshore when the boat traffic is heavy. I suppose whether the HD is worth the extra money for you largely depends upon how you view the enhanced performance/safety factors. In the end, it all comes down to what financial sacrifice you would have to make if you spend the extra coin.

Last edited by Pez Vela; 03-02-2015 at 07:40 AM.
Old 03-02-2015, 07:36 AM
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I would pay the extra coin for dual range. Dual range is very useful.
Old 03-02-2015, 07:54 AM
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Dual range and the full color coding of the returns are worth the extra money. I've had the analog which is very similar to Digital in performance and RD418HD.
Old 03-02-2015, 08:03 AM
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HD is totally meaningless. It is like putting 'sport' on the end of a car model, e.g. honda civic 'sport'. is a honda civic sport actually 'sporty' compared to a base model corvette? no. compared to a normal civic? I guess so?

HD when it comes to radar is exactly the same. it has absolutely no meaning whatsoever...there is no standard, it is the same as calling it 'super-duper' radar.

with that said, radars, like most electronics, have gotten better as time has gone on. newer models with newer features are going to perform better than older radars. with the brief description you give, you may want to consider the simrad/lowrance broadband radars. broadband, unlike HD, has actual meaning and has real advantages compared to 'other' radars and is excellent for close-quarters collision avoidance.
Old 03-02-2015, 09:12 AM
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You are right, HD doesn't mean anything specific when it comes to radar. Every company seems to put whatever they like into the term as long as the HD product is at least slightly better than the non HD. The question from the OP in this thread is about Raymarine 18" Digital or HD. Raymarine HD is a major step up from their Digital range, it offers 48rpm high speed mode, dual range, color coding of returns, better resolution and improved automatic operation. If we compare Garmin HD with Raymarine, Garmin HD corresponds to Raymarine Digital. I agree that Simrad/Lowrance BroadBand radar is better than HD and UHD domes. I've had Raymarine analog, Raymarine HD and now I have Simrad 4G.
Old 03-02-2015, 09:29 AM
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Used to have a Furuno 1715 on my last boat. Currently have a 4G on my boat now and it is more detailed in close conditions. Especially when overlaid on my HDS it gives me all the info I need.
Old 03-02-2015, 09:32 AM
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I have Raymarine products on board, need to go with them (stuck). That being said just for short range target hitting it seems a new 18" non HD would still show a boat in my path or vise versa, correct? As far as duel I see its good. I'd hardly ever use except the early morning trip and than I'd use for 1 hr till sun rise. Don't really want to be cheep but where does it stop??? It don't huh!!!

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