But the "theaterlike" wideness of Raymarine's new C-Wide multifunction display series frankly didn't impress me until I saw both how well the company's split windows-which allow you to simultaneously display two info sources, such as a chart and radar-fit into a vertical helm space formerly limited to smaller screens and how well they looked in C-Wide's extra-high resolution. The three new C's-ranging in size from 9 inches to 14 inches and starting at $2,700-also boast built-in charts and SeaTalkHS Ethernet networking to a second station and to various sensors, such as Raymarine's new Digital Radomes, which I also hope to include in my upcoming testing.
While it was wonderful, I thought, to see AIS B transponders available in Miami from many vendors, even West Marine, Raymarine's new AIS500 distinguishes itself by including a VHF antenna splitter, an NMEA 0183 multiplexer, and output to both NMEA 0183 and NMEA 2000 (a.k.a. SeaTalkNG). Its premium $1,400 price may make sense when the whole installation is considered; in addition, desirable future AIS features, such as easy and effective digital selective calling to a target vessel, are more likely to come via the 2000 protocol rather than through the 0183 protocol.