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SiOnyx Aurora

SiOnyx Aurora

SiOnyx Aurora

Best marine electronics for 2019, Part 2

Last week we rolled out part 1 of our annual roundup of the top marine electronics products for 2019. These are the devices that took first place in award competitions throughout the year.

The competitions are run by an interesting mix of marine publications, boat show organizers and marine-related groups. A few of them ask Boating Writers International to appoint a panel of their members to judge the nominated products. The DAME Awards panel includes specialists from the design and other marine disciplines. The NMEA awards are selected by two methods. NMEA members, including dealers, manufacturers and others, vote for the winners of the annual Product of Excellence Awards while an independent panel of marine electronics dealers/installers and marine journalists select the Technology and Best New Product awards.

As we pointed out in part 1, innovative new products seem to come in waves. A dozen years ago wireless technology began coming on like gangbusters, impacting everything from communications to remote monitoring of onboard systems. Not long ago we saw the introduction of revolutionary radars equipped with Doppler technology to keep boaters aware of nearby vessels that may pose a risk. In 2018 it was a proliferation of portable devices to aid in navigation, security and safety/survival at sea. All the while connectivity pushed out in every direction, linking equipment and systems.

As we sorted through electronics that won awards in 2019, the results seemed more eclectic, ranging from multifunction displays that harness augmented reality to a handheld VHF that does a lot more than help you communicate. Here’s the rest of the 2019 winners:

MIBS Innovation Awards

In February, the SiOnyx Aurora also took the prize in the Consumer Electronics, Mobile Applications and Software category at the Miami International Boat Show’s Innovation Awards (Sail magazine’s Pittman Awards named the Aurora top dog a month earlier.). Sail-Sense won an honorable mention.

"More than just a night vision camera, the Aurora serves up full color detail providing easier navigation even in extremely low light.”

Boating Industry Top Products

In May Boating Industry magazine rolled out its 50 Top Products, which are "new or updated marine products or services that were introduced or significantly updated since January 2018.” Selected from 150 submissions, the 50 "stood out from the rest of the pack for their impact on the industry, innovations and how it advances its product category or creates a new segment entirely.” Here are winners that have an electronics or electrical component.

Fusion Apollo RA770
Features a one-piece glass touchscreen display, making trying to locate the correct button a thing of the past. WiFi streaming ensures the highest quality audio streaming available, while digital signal processing automatically provides premium audio delivery to all speakers in any environment.

Garmin Panoptix LiveScope
Live-scanning sonar that gives anglers higher res and easier to interpret images of structure, bait and fish swimming below and around the boat than ever before. Garmin’s all-seeing sonar technology was the first to deliver live sonar images in real time, forward, backward, sideways and below the boat, even while stationary.

Glomex ZigBoat
A modular wireless system that can monitor everything from water in the bilge to movement on deck. It’s all easily tracked on a smartphone and if something goes awry, it will trigger a notification and can instantly send an SMS message.

Lowrance HDS Live
Delivers powerful real-time sonar, charting and connectivity features including Active Imaging, LiveSight, Genesis Live and LiveCast smartphone integration. Active Imaging provides clear sonar detail. LiveSight delivers detailed views of fish. HDS Live harnesses the power of Genesis Live charting. LiveCast lets users view their smartphone via HDMI connection.

Lumishore Smart Lighting
First and only marine DC system with tunable color and white light, able to be controlled from a boat’s MFD or a user’s personal smart device. Plug and play compatible with MFD or Lumishore display.

Minn Kota Ultrex
For the first time anglers can select Ultrex trolling motor with built-in MEGA Down Imaging. The transducer will now be integrated into the trolling motor. It is housed in the durable lower motor unit and the wiring runs through the composite shaft providing clean rigging that is protected from wear and tear.
New machine-learning controller for the Nautic Alert platform that monitors and automatically controls bilge pumps. Not only can it detect and deal with a multitude of issues with full redundancy but the detailed cycle data it provides to the cloud enables pre-failure detection of bilge equipment. Enables machine learning intelligence to learn what’s normal and what’s not.

Smart boat platform uses connectivity to provide peace of mind that the boat is working and secure and also facilities the diagnostic and resolution process if something goes wrong. Modular and expandable according the a boater’s needs. Provides systems information through SmartCraft and NMEA 2000 ports.

Power Products Battery Switch
Compact and affordable battery switches provide a solution for battery management on smaller outboard boats. With a 150A continuous rating, they are powerful enough to control the master power on smaller motors. First battery terminal mount switch that is ignition protected, so it can be used in compartments containing fuel and is ABYC compliant.

Prospec Electronics three-way speaker
Allows flexibility to remove the 3.5 inch mid-tweeter from the 8 inch speaker body and install it at a higher location on the boat. Installing the speaker at a higher location raises the soundstage. Two forms of lighting: center mount and built-in perimeter light band.

Seakeeper 2
Improves the boating experience by virtually eliminating boat roll. For boats 27-32 feet or up to seven tons, it’s the only stabilization system for boats of this size. It requires 12V DC power and can be custom-installed, making refit installs quicker and more economical.

Shakespeare Galaxy INFL8
Emergency 5-foot full-3dB VHF antenna allows for easy stowage and rapid deployment. Increases the range by up to three times of other emergency VHF antennas. Uses a CO2 cartridge for inflation.

Simrad HALO24
Pulse compression radar boasts 60 rpm high-speed rotation at up to 1.5 miles, allowing for increased safety and improved performance. Delivering a full 360 degree sweep every second, this extremely fast refresh rate gives users an almost real time view at close range.

Vesper Marine Vision2
Combines navigation sensor data, GPS and AIS information with intelligent alert logic and triggers alarms in the event of hazardous situations. While traditional AIS transponders only send and receive AIS signals, the smart AIS unit continuously monitors alerts and notifies accordingly.
ICAST New Product Showcase

At the end of July, Humminbird landed two awards at ICAST, the International Convention of Allied Sportfishing Trades. The MEGA 360 Imaging was voted Best of Electronics by attending media and buyers, while the ICE HELIX 7 CHIRP GPS G3N All-Season won the inaugural Best of Ice Fishing award.
Humminbird’s MEGA 360 Imaging is the latest addition to its One-Boat Network. The transducer integrates seamlessly with Minn Kota trolling motors. It keeps a constant orientation while imaging in a 360 degree circle out to 125 feet. The imaging return can be viewed side by side with dual-spectrum CHIRP sonar or LakeMaster mapping.
The ICE HELIX 7 CHIRP GPS G3N All-Season features new AutoChart Live Ice, which allows anglers to create a custom map by taking data points at multiple hole locations and then displaying the layout of contours below the ice.
Newport for New Products Award
Organizers of the Newport (RI) Boat Show announced in mid September that judges and show attendees voted Garmin’s GPSMAP 86SCI Best New Electronics Product. The organizers call it the Newport for New Products Award.
IBEX Innovation Awards
At the International BoatBuilders’ Exhibition and Conference (IBEX) in early October, Vesper Marine’s Cortex took the Safety Equipment category in the annual IBEX Innovation Awards. Cortex is the world’s first marine VHF with wireless touchscreen handsets, built-in Class B/SOTDMA AIS transponder and remote vessel monitoring. Cortex alerts boaters of collision risks, providing key information about the situation and making it easy to communicate using VHF, DSC and AIS.
Dometic’s E-Actuator, the industry’s first all-electric remote-mount steering actuator for outboard engines, took top honors in the Electronics category.
The Mic reported on winners of the three NMEA Awards and the DAME Awards a few weeks ago. Click here:
DAME Awards

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Comments | Leave a Comment
Page 1 of 1 ( 1 comments)

Bob:(1/8/2020 7:08:01 PM) "How does Vesper Cortex win an award when its not even available to users? Last I heard, they were still awaiting FCC certification.

Anyone remember the Standard Horizon GX6500 that was introduced 3 years ago?

Thanks for the comment and my apologies for our delay in responding. In checking with NMEA, immediate availability was not a criteria for the Best New Product award. Cortex also took an IBEX award and an honorable mention in the DAME award competition--but I don't know whether their criteria included availability. In our humble opinion, a product should be on the market in order to qualify for a product award."

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