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Journeyman Baiter
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I need any input,as to which chartplotter to buy. I don't want to just squander money, but I don't want that old,"if I would have just spent a little more,I'll get it next time"b.s. I can't see great, so I think I need at least a 8 or 10" screen,or even a 12! But I don't understand all those numbers like the 3208 vs the 4208s, or the4212vs 4012. This is not an offshore boat,it's a new 24' Pathfinder, bay /jetties/beachfront use.I've only had one old Lowerance[in 1995!],so I'm asking for input. One guy said the touch-screens/5200s are easy to use and great fun, but is that just overkill and a waste on a bay boat? Also- has anyone heard of any problems with the touch screen technology? My point is, I'd rather find a reasonable choice then go a little more,as I always regret scrimping in the past! I figure there's a ton of experence out there about this--so thanks for any help..
 

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get the most you can afford...which is prally a lot since you're getting a 24 pathfinder.

the "s" on the end adds sonar to the unit. you can do that or get a separate depth finder.

I'm still on my first Garmin that i bought 6+ years ago... it's a 162 and i can't seem to una$$ money to replace it when it works just fine for me. Although I really like the features and size of the 3206.
 

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do you need radar?
do you need xm weather?
what sort of 3d imagery do you prefer?

for your boat, I'd go with a 3210 which can be found from boemarine at 1050.00.

Save the money unless you need the extra features. I have a 4210 on my current boat, I should have saved the cash and gone with the 3210 I had on my everglades.

The 6k and 7k series are out now too, but they are $$$$$
 

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garmin info

Rideorfish, nxfedlt1 gave some good info. I did the same has he did and went with the 3210. Just so you know, this particular model has been discontinued but you can still find a few around for alot less than the 4000 series units. One difference with the 3210 compared to the newer model like the 4210 is the xm weather, it is in the unit already no need for the network box like you would need with the 3210. I had a 545 that was barely a year old but like you the screen size was killing me. I already have a seperate Garmin fishfinder so all I need to do is purchase the weather box and antenna for the 3210. If my fishfinder goes out, my transducer is compatable with the 3210.

As far as the numbers go, most of the 3000 series units have been discontinued. The 4000 series replaced them and with those numbers, the last two represent the screen size as well as the screen resolution. The 4008 has a 8 inch screen that uses VGA technology with 640x480 pixels where the 4012 is a 12 inch screen that uses XGA technology with 1024x768 pixels, it's like HDTV compared to non HDTV and believe me there is a noticable difference and worth the extra money.

I like everything about the 3210 and if you were to have any issues Garmin customer support is outstanding.

Gater
 

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Do not buy one now. They are coming out with new models in the 1st Q of 2010 and the biggest and best feature is they have doubled the drawing speed. I had a 5000 series and as nice as it is/was the biggest drawback was trying to precisely get on a gps spot to set anchor and fish a specific spot like a drop off or grassline. Sometimes by the time you were on or past the spot the drawing would just catch up. I think it is worth waiting and I am for my new Haynie.
 

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The Garmin 4000 and 5000 chart plotters are my favorite large screen units out there right now. The 4000 has buttons, the 5000 has a touchscreen. Any of them (3000, 4000 and 5000) will need an XM receiver - antenna to pick up weather - audio. I've sold a lot of the touchscreen models and haven't seen or heard of a problem with the screen.

If you update the software on these units to the latest and turn off the satellite imagery and photos they have the necessary redraw rate to keep you on top of what you're looking for. The latest software update improved a lot of the earlier problems and also added a lot of new functionality like compass overlay and tape plus the look and feel of the newest models.

The new ones will be out first quarter but they will cost more. That means the pricing on the current 4000 and 5000 models will probably be coming down soon.

The 3000 is a nice unit and a great value but it's old technology. It uses the hard to find Garmin proprietary cards to move data and keep the software updated. You will also need a Garmin USB card reader for this to work. The new ones use standard SD cards that you can find at Kroger now. And most new computers have a SD card reader.

Since these units should last you many years why would you start out with outdated technology when you don't have to. With the advances they've made with their new line over the last couple of years I'm looking forward to what we're going to see in the very near future.

Add to it the fact that now with Garmin's new HomePort software you can have the same charts on your computer that you have on your GPS it makes trip planning and saving GPS data much easier than it's ever been before. To do this with the 3000 series you'd have to unlock the entire US coast from the BlueChart software at a tremendous expense and get the above noted hardware.

Just my two cents worth.
I hope everyone has a safe and happy holiday season.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks to 2Coolers

I want to say thanks for the replys,they helped out. I'm going to wait for the boat show,to see the new Garmin models. Hope to see some of you guys out there.
 
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