There's so much sizzle to Furuno's Time Zero plotting innovation, that extraordinary peripherals like its new Ultra High Definition radar and the SC-30 super sensor, are overshadowed. But they sure make themselves known on the water. Some signs of what the DRS4A 4-kW, 3.5-inch open array can do, besides crisp shoreline, buoy, and boat imagery: not only did it track a cormorant skimming two feet off the water a few hundred yards away, but the first alarm set off by a mile-away guard zone was also a bird, and much of the day the boat's wake showed up reassuringly where, before HD, there would just be clutter. And that was all without manual tuning. The $4,600 DRS4A also showed itself adept at the true dual range—i.e. using simultaneous, autonomous scans—and automatic target tracking (ARPA) features built into all UHD scanners. And, like the others, it was installed using a relatively lightweight "Siamese" cable that carries Ethernet and 48-volt power. It also has a powered NMEA 2000 port able to fully support certain sensors like the Furuno SC-30 Satellite Compass, which in turn helped it paint that useful true-motion echo-track screen above.
This article originally appeared in the August 2008 issue of Power & Motoryacht magazine.