FLIBS 2013: Raymarine displays its new technology on a Whaler

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FORT LAUDERDALE — Raymarine took its show offsite Wednesday to showcase its latest navigation technology.

The electronics manufacturer set up a 32-foot Boston Whaler center console at the Hilton Marina with all of its latest offerings, including the newest version of its operating system for multifunction displays — Lighthouse II.

Lighthouse II features a simpler, easy-to-use menu and quicker access to key features, said Raymarine marketing manager Jim McGowan. “All of the features our customers use the most are now at the tops of the menus,” McGowan said as he showed me the products on the Whaler. “If you are trying to create a waypoint or a route, the system is much more intuitive.”

To support Lighthouse II, Raymarine has launched its own chart engine — Lighthouse Charts, which consist of new raster and vector charts built from the U.S. government data sets, McGowan said. “The ultimate goal is to bring customers more choices,” he said. “We will still have full support of Navionics charts, so we continue our strong relationship with Navionics.”

The Lighthouse II update and charts are free to current Raymarine customers and should be available for download in mid-December, said McGowan.

Here was the setup on the Whaler: An e125 12.1-inch display and a 7-inch display were mounted on the leaning post, facing aft, to showcase the new software and charts. At the helm were twin e165s with 15.5-inch displays and a Raymarine p70R autopilot controller with 3.5-inch screen.

In addition to the e-Series multifunction displays, the company’s Evolution Autopilot, CP100 sonar with CHIRP DownVision and thermal imaging were part of the navigation and communications package on the boat.

It has been a busy fall for Raymarine. In September it introduced the ECI-100 engine and drive-by-wire steering interface. The system helps boatbuilders and electronics installers bridge the gap between the latest engines and steering systems and Raymarine products.

The ECI-100, which is $299, gathers and connects engine information to deliver performance data, fuel consumption and alarm information through Raymarine MFDs.

The interface hit the market in October and works with Volvo Penta, Yamaha (Command Link Plus), Caterpillar and Yanmar engines and interfaces with Volvo Penta IPS and Yamaha Helm Master autopilot systems.

— Chris Landry

facebook.com/chris.landry.9026

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