SeaTalkNG, an N2K parallel universe?

Ben Ellison

Ben Ellison

Panbo editor, publisher & chief bottlewasher from 4/2005 until 8/2018, and now excited to have Ben Stein as very able publisher, webmaster, and editing colleague. Panbo is going to the next level in 2019 and beyond.

3 Responses

  1. Russ says:

    From all these caveats, proprietary branding and cautions, I can only conclude that Raymarine is not confident that the areas where it actually adds value are sufficiently compelling to attract customers. So it’s using cabling to try to lock customers into an all, or at least mostly, Raymarine system. This is only viable so long as customers will buy a “might” connect system.
    The computer industry dropped this nonsense twenty years ago. Can you imagine a computer vendor describing it’s networking capabilties as “almost” Ethernet compatible? Can you imagine needing an adapter cable to connect your computer to a true Ethernet network?
    Raymarine has got this so backwards. If they want to sell more E-series systems and ST-90 displays, then make a system that is so utterly compatible, that of course I want to have it as the center piece of my system, because I know I can always add bits and pieces from someone else and utilize them on my Raymarine system.
    Add real value by creating a systems that intelligently and seamlessly integrates 183, N2K, NavNet, FastNet, etc. and makes it easy for a customer to upgrade. If you make the system easier to integrate and upgrade then we’d be more likely to upgrade and we’d be spending more of our limited budgets on the equipment instead of having to divide it between the equpment and the installer.
    And this extends to other areas as well. Every time Icom introduces a new feature for it’s remote microphones, it requires new cabling. Pulling that cabling is far more expensive and painful than buying the radio. If the cabling were compatible, I would replace my M-502 with an M-504. But there is no way I’m spending a day (or paying an installer $100 / hr) removing the old cable and fishing a new cable as it snakes 25′ from my nav station to my cockpit. That M-502 will be there for a long time! Icom lost sales due to their cabling.
    Wake up manufacturers! Proprietary networking is not added value. Fast, accurate plotters, high resolution radar, clear radio transmissions, user interfaces that don’t require a training course or manual, these are added value. Seamless networking and interconnectivity sells more equipment for eveyone!

  2. George says:

    It is jokingly called the “connector conspiracy” in the electronics industry. It is pretty tempting to make your own proprietary cables because the profit margins are higher on this little stuff than on the plotters themselves. It is especially tempting to make your own connectors for a system that requires terminators, joins, drop cables, tees, and whole bunches of other fun little toys that add up to the final bill, but that the customer doesn’t see reflected in the window price of the unit.

  3. Ray Nordstrom says:

    Re: the Icom cableing issue
    I will say a huge AMEN to not upgrading a radio due to having to run new cable. I have an Icom 710RT (which you need a Phd to operate) that I would think about swapping for their new SSB but for having to run new cable. The new radio is said to be more user (and ham) friendly.

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