Author Articles

Tim Bartlett

PMY Electronics Editor:
Based out of the U.K., Tim has a lifetime of experience running and writing about boats. For more than ten years, he served as the technical editor of Motor Boat and Yachting—the UK’s leading powerboat magazine. Since leaving that position in 1997, he has penned articles for various boating publications, including Power & Motoryacht’s sister magazine, SAIL Magazine. Read more here...

Avoiding Disaster

By | Posted January 2010 | Add a Comment

True Motion displays like this one have come down from the big-ship world. For collision avoidance, switch to the unit’s relative-motion mode.One foggy May morning, a few years ago, a 900-foot container ship heading westwards at 25 knots collided with a 40-foot yacht called Wahkuna, which until a few minutes before the collision,

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Looking Ahead

By | Posted November 2009 | Add a Comment

The Interphase IScan V90 is vertical-scanning look-ahead sonar, made in the USA. ($2,388) and wherever we go offshore, it's a fair bet that the closest

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Upgrade or Download?

By | Posted October 2009 | Add a Comment

It’s always nice to buy presents for the one you love—even if it is difficult, sometimes, to persuade your wife that the boat needs a new plotter more than she needs that designer purse.But maybe you figure that now isn’t the best time to be spending big money on electronics upgrades. Well, the good news is that you can often significantly improve your

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Apollo II HD and Standard Horizon’s Plotter/Fishfinders

By | Posted August 2009 | Add a Comment

Apollo II HDOceanView Technologies has added a new dual-sensor camera to its line-up of night-vision systems.As the name suggests, the Apollo II HD is a high-definition version of the company’s popular Apollo II. Like the Apollo II, the HD combines a thermal-imaging camera with a highly sensitive low-light camera that is capable of

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Dialing In

By | Posted August 2009 | Add a Comment

Modern radars like this Raymarine C120 may hide their manual set-up controls behind menus and soft keys, but they are still worth looking for.If I ever happen to get the chance to play with someone else’s radar, I almost always set myself a challenge: can I get a better picture using manual adjustments than the radar’s automatic

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Iridium Openport

By | Posted July 2009 | Add a Comment

After conducting extensive beta-testing that included sending five terminals around the world in boats competing in the Vendee Globe single-handed sailboat race, Iridium has launched the world’s only global broadband service. Called OpenPort, the new service provides three independent phone lines and an Internet connection at anything up to 128 kilobytes

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GPS Ailing and Failing?

By | Posted July 2009 | Add a Comment

Garmin Colorado 400C still better than a sextant even if the GPS is getting old ($599.99 MSRP; is growing concern that GPS performance may soon start to degrade, as the Air Force struggles to keep its constellation of aging satellites in operation.It’s been more than 30 years since

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A Fatal Error

By | Posted July 2009 | Add a Comment

Photo by USCGThe ill-fated fishing vessel Lady Mary, docked at her home port of Cape May, New Jersey, before the incident.EPIRB manufacturers around the world are urging owners to make sure their distress beacons are properly registered. The warning follows the loss of the scallop dredger

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Hazardous to Your Health?

By | Posted June 2009 | Add a Comment

Garmin pulsed radarThe microwaves that reheat your coffee are very much the same as those transmitted by marine radars, so it isn’t too far-fetched to believe that they could “cook” anyone who gets in their way. And we all know that some types of radiation can produce deformities in unborn children or trigger the

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Garmin VHFs

By | Posted May 2009 | Add a Comment

Long known for its navigational electronics, Garmin is now about to enter the VHF market with two fixed-mount radios. Pre-release information describes the VHF100 as an entry-level radio, but at $250, it’s definitely full-featured. It’s waterproof, has a large 3.2-inch screen and straightforward controls, and can handle NOAA weather alerts as well as the usual

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