Author Archives: Clarke Coole

Icom M73 Review

[rwp-review-recap id=”0″] The Icom M73 is a nice handheld VHF radio that has some nice features.  It has 6 Watts of transmit power giving folks the longest communication range a handheld can give.  It has the best waterproof features and has been tested submersed under water at 4.9 feet for

Levenhuk Vegas Review

We tested the Vegas 10×52 out in the British Virgin Islands and were surprised by the good quality of these binoculars.  We were most surprised by the clarity of images during very little daylight. The diopter scale is located conveniently at the bottom side of the right eyepiece with plus

West Marine VHF 55

[rwp-review-recap id=”0″] The West Marine VHF 55 is a compact, lightweight, and inexpensive handheld marine VHF radio. It weighs in at just under nine ounces and will fit in your hand nicely. The included AC charger will fully charge the 1200 mAH Lithium Ion battery used in this radio in

Choosing a Handheld GPS for Marine Use

Choosing a handheld GPS for your boat, whether as a primary or back up navigation device, amounts to determining how you intend to use this tool and how much you are able and willing to spend to acquire hardware and software. Today’s handheld GPS units range from roughly $100 to

Uniden MHS550 Review

The Uniden MHS550 is a multi-band marine handheld VHF radio capable of transmitting and receiving on the Marine band and the Family Radio Service band. It will also receive on the AM and FM broadcast bands and receive aircraft band traffic as well. The radio body is constructed from die

Lowrance HDS-8 Review

The Lowrance HDS-8 is a multifunction display that serves as both a marine chartplotter and Broadband Sounder ™. It also contains an internal GPS sensor. The unit came preloaded with Lowrance Nautic Insight ™ U.S. Coastal cartography. The HDS-8 package includes the display unit, mounting bracket, dual-frequency transom-mount transducer, operations

Garmin 78sc Review

The recently announced Garmin 78sc is at the pinnacle of the three model 78-series marine handheld GPS lineup. Not only does this unit float, it also features a high-sensitivity GPS receiver, and two onboard sensors, an internal electronic compass and barometric altimeter. The “c” designation in the model number indicates

Boat Wire, Choose Carefully

In the harsh marine environment only top shelf boat wire or marine cable will suffice. Start any repair or installation project by picking the right wire for the job by choosing good quality wire or cable properly sized and color-coded for the job at hand. Get the Right Type and

Olympus Magellan Review

The Olympus Magellan is mid-size 7×50 marine binocular that weighs in at 39-ounces. Noted features in this binocular review included individual eye focus and a smooth blue plastic exterior armor. The diopter scale is located on the bottom side of the eyepieces with index and scale marks molded into the

XM Satellite Weather Review

XM Marine Weather Service XM marine weather data is transmitted to a compatible system, like the Garmin GDL 30A weather receiver and Garmin 3210 multi-function display we used for testing, with satellite based radio signals. Weather information is collected from both government and private weather providers then analyzed and processed

West Marine VHF650

The West Marine VHF650 is built by Uniden and sold through West Marine. This mid-level marine VHF radio has some unique features normally only found in more expensive gear. They include a basic hailer, battery voltage monitor, and dot matrix display screen. Plus, its waterproof to tough JIS7 standards, meaning

West Marine VHF580

The West Marine VHF580 is sold online through the West Marine website and nationally in stores. This entry level marine VHF radio has all the basics plus a Class D DSC rating. The front panel features up/down channel selector pushbuttons as well as one-button control to select transmitter power level

West Marine VHF 250 Review

The talented West Marine VHF 250 features full marine-band capabilities, plus it can receive signals from the Family radio, AM, FM, and Aircraft bands. It can transmit on the Marine and Family radio channels. Other features include a die-cast metal case and a top-mounted adapter ready to accept an optional

West Marine VHF 150 Review

The West Marine VHF 150 is a smallish lightweight radio housed in a well-armored die-cast metal case.  On/off volume and squelch twist knobs are mounted in a concentric shaft on top of the radio. A top-mounted adapter ready to accept an optional speaker or microphone is on top too.  Eight

West Marine VHF 550

The West Marine VHF550 is built by Uniden and sold through West Marine online and at stores. It’s a mid-grade marine VHF radio with a couple exclusive features not often seen in this price range. It can connect to a wireless remote microphone and has a basic hailer system. Functions

West Marine Tahiti Review

The West Marine Tahiti 7×50 marine binocular has a sleek modern appearance and is shielded from the elements with a layer of blue and black plastic armor coating. Tahiti features center focus with a single adjustable diopter on the right eyepiece. Testers noted the center focusing mechanism worked smoothly and

The West Marine AIS1000 Review

The West Marine AIS1000 is a class-B AIS transceiver designed to display data on a compatible chartplotter, dedicated display, or on a PC with compatible software. The AIS1000 ships with the transponder unit, a GPS antenna, a power and data cable, a BNC to VHF adapter cable, and a user

Using a Marine Radio

Using a marine radio may appear to be pretty straightforward, but you have to know some rules, procedures and the most important frequencies to fully utilize this critical communication device. One of the most important things to remember is that channel 16 is the International Hailing and Distress Frequency. This

Used Marine Electronics

Used marine electronics often go overlooked when boat owners outfit a new vessel or replace pieces of marine electronics equipment like a mapping chartplotter, fishfinder, or radar on their current boat. The cost of outfitting a recreational vessel with boat electronics can exceed $10,000 when you add up all the

Using a Fishfinder

At first glance, using a fishfinder may seem complicated, but once you understand the technology behind the machine and some basic functions, you will quickly become a pro at finding fish. However, before we delve into the world of sonar, transducers and LCD screen resolution, let’s talk about fish finding

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