What Does Your Boat Need?
So you bought a boat. Now what?
Life on the water is great, but it can come with a lot of questions. You probably need some technology or additional equipment, but how do you know what to look for? Do you need sonar? Which chartplotter is right for you? What is a chartplotter?
No worries. We’ve got you covered. We make some of the best technology for all types of boaters, and we’ve made it easy for you to find out what you need. Start by scrolling down to learn a little bit more about marine technology, and why you might want to use it on your boat. We’ve made a list of everything you might need, organized by how they help you make the most of your time on the water.
Whether you have a coastal power boat, a fishing boat you use on local lakes or a sailboat, we’ve got all the navigation equipment to help you plot the course for your next adventure.
- GPSMAP® x3 chartplotters: While we know the first thing you probably think of is navigation, Garmin chartplotters can do a whole lot more than get you where you’re going (thought they certainly do that). Consider a chartplotter the brains of the operation. They can be used to show data from other equipment on board like radar, engines, lights and more — even to see what’s under the water around you when paired with a transducer (sold separately). Using GPS, chartplotters can show your exact location on a navigational chart, along with heading, speed and other information.
- ActiveCaptain® app: Downloaded on your compatible smartphone or tablet, this free, all-in-one app creates a powerful connection between you and your Garmin chartplotters, charts and the Garmin boating community.
- Garmin Marine charts: We don’t need to tell you the importance of these. Even Magellan had charts. Of course, his didn’t include features like high-resolution relief shading or satellite photography.
Do you get out on the water for the fish? If you’re looking for the catch of a lifetime, then these products are built for you. The sonar capabilities in Garmin fishfinders make fishing so easy, it almost feels like cheating.
- Transducers: With the capability to pair with Garmin chartplotters and/or fishfinders to provide a crystal clear, easy-to-use interface, Garmin transducers provide sonar readings of the water underneath the boat so you can see bottom structure, fish swimming (or hiding from you) and more. The Panoptix LiveScope™ System pairs with compatible chartplotters and is the top of the line, with stunning, real-time imagery below and around your boat up to 200’. The GT56 pairs with compatible chartplotters and fishfinders and is a versatile, all-in-one transducer featuring ClearVü, SideVü and traditional sonar.
- ECHOMAP™ Bundles: Pair these chartplotters with our transducers to get the best in sonar and built-in cartography for navigation. If you’re serious about fishing, you’re going to want one of these.
- STRIKER™ Vivid Series help you find the fish from your boat. Through built-in sonar, you can see fish and underwater structure in crisp detail. You can mark any good fishing spots — and even choose different color options.
- STRIKER™ Cast: Just attach this handy sonar device to your fishing line and cast. Reel it back in to view sonar with a 200’ castable range via an app display on your compatible smartphone or tablet. In addition to heading out on your boat, this product is a great fit for you if you own a kayak or sometimes fish from shore.
What is the point of a party on the water if you can’t crank the tunes? Whether you’re into flashy, heavy bass or something a little more subtle, we have a full suite of marine entertainment products to help you customize a sound system for your boat.
- Fusion® MS-RA60: This is our durable, economic marine stereo. It’s modern yet retrofittable, and you can control the music from your compatible smart device or Garmin watch.
- Fusion® Apollo® Series: If you want a marine stereo with the best in audio quality and innovation, you’ll want one of these. Custom audio profiles, seamless high-quality streaming and an option for a touchscreen console.
- Fusion® Signature Series 3 Marine Speakers: These speakers don’t just feature an option for multicolor LED lighting but also superior sound quality and a 3-year warranty.
If your picture-perfect day on the water includes a sailboat, you might need help to harness the wind — literally. We have some great instruments (code for screens that will show you all the wind, wind angle and depth data you could want) and sensors to help you capture that data.
- GMI™ 20: Sporting a bright 4” color class-bonded lens display with anti-glare finish, this is more than just a wind instrument — it also shows speed, depth and 100+ marine and vessel parameters. If you’re into racing, it’s also got a dedicated race timer that counts both down and up.
- GNX™ Wired Sail Pack 52: If you’re looking to knock out all of your sailing needs at once, this bundle has everything you need to know exactly what’s going on with the wind and water around you.
For Staying Safe
Ideally, this is a priority for everyone on the water, regardless of whether you’re into speed racing, partying on pontoons or somewhere in between.
- Fantom Radars: It’s pretty important that you be able to see what’s coming. This suite of radar technology highlights moving targets in color and fully integrates with Garmin chartplotters to show you what’s headed toward you — or away from you. On the water, it’s best to keep surprises to a minimum.
- VHF 215 AIS Marine Radio: With a built-in GPS, distress calling, direct calling and frequency bands that include all U.S., Canadian and international marine channels, this marine radio increases peace of mind and will allow you to communicate with confidence on the water.
- MSC™ 10 Marine Satellite Compass. This compass does a whole lot more than just pointing due north. An easy-to-install, multi-band GNSS receiver, you’ll get detailed tracking that even includes pitch, roll and heave information if the water is feeling a little choppy.