I think we can all agree that one of the most groundbreaking areas in our boating lives has come in the electronics sector. When I first started, all we had back then were our paper charts, dividers and parallel ruler, a watch, and a compass. I even remember getting my first Loran set and thinking what would come next! So, to keep everyone updated here at the Boat & Yacht Report, we’ll do our best to get you the latest in all the current technology that will make your boating experience a bit more enjoyable and of course, as safe as can be. -Capt. Ken
McMurdo Smartfind M5 AIS Class A Transponder
First up is a neat gizmo from McMurdo. The McMurdo Smartfind M5 AIS (Automatic Identification System) Class A Transponder gives mariners the ability to view at a glance the AIS status of vessels all around them and provides access to a host of detailed navigation information.
The Smartfind M5, shown here with MOB screen and mounting bracket, can be a welcome and helpful addition to your electronics display.
AIS is an automatic tracking system used on ships and boats and by vessel traffic services (VTS) for identifying and locating vessels by electronically exchanging data with other nearby ships, AIS base stations, and satellites. Once the domain of larger ships, advanced technology has now made this type of safety equipment available to smaller, recreational vessels.
Smartfind M5 is a flexible, low-cost, easy to install, user-friendly AIS Class A transponder, incorporating a fully comprehensive AIS MOB (Man Overboard) and AIS SART (Search and Rescue Transponder) alarm to aid MOB recovery. It provides on-screen Indication and internal buzzer when any AIS SART/MOB TXID (Transmission Identification) is received, an optional remote waterproof (MOB / alarm) sounder is also available. It also allows a “buddy list” of the vessels own AIS MOB IDs and associated crew name and has a steer to rescue MOB casualty target screen. The AIS MOB alarm feature is compatible with the McMurdo S10 AIS Beacon, Smartfind S20 SRS and other AIS SART devices. More info: www.mcmurdomarine.com.
THE SHAKESPEARE COMPANY: KITS BOLSTER CELL PHONE/INTERNET CONNECTIVITY ANYWHERE
Enjoying life on the water or the road doesn’t have to mean a loss of connectivity. The new dual band Aura and Halo cellular booster kits from Shakespeare improve AT&T, T-Mobile and Verizon cell phone and internet reception on a boat or RV, or in any location where phone signals are weak.
The unique compartmentalized design of these cellular boosters increases call clarity for multiple users in areas up to 6,000 sq. ft. Units feature a tough metal casing that ensures durability and weather resistance. Installation is simple, requiring no special tools or tech skills.
Shakespeare’s booster kits not only enhance cell phone reception, they also improve a phone’s battery life. The energy-efficient Aura booster consumes less than 20W, and the Halo, less than 30W. Their tough metal casings provide durability and weather resistance.
Compatible with virtually all US 2G and 3G networks, the Aura CA-VAT kit betters reception for up to five users simultaneously. Its indoor directional panel antenna and adjustable dials maximize signal strength throughout a vessel or other space.
Accommodating up to eight users, the Halo model works with virtually all US 2G and 3G networks. It also boosts 4G networks via a carrier-specific configuration (AT&T, T-Mobile or Verizon). This full-featured kit poses the ideal solution for large vessels or spaces with poor signal, or those that require large
coverage. Halo’s completely integrated CA-V, CA-T and CA-A amplifier kits combine PCS and cellular dual-bands with 4G frequency, resulting in dramatically improved 4G speed for faster uploads/downloads with no buffering. Tower proximate technology automatically recognizes when signal overload to cell towers occurs. In addition to having manually adjustable dials for each frequency, the Halo model comes with built-in automatic shutdown.
Each kit includes CA-V, A or T amplifier, outdoor and indoor antenna, coax cable and a user manual. The AC power transformer for all models provides AC110V, 60Hz input and DC 12V/6V output; 12V/6V DC power is optional for the Aura. LMR240 cable is recommended for the Halo and Aura booster kits, which provides added flexibility and reduced circumference to ease installation. Shakespeare offers a two-year warranty on all its models. More info: www.shakespeare-marine.com.
GOST® Security, Monitoring & Surveillance Systems
Integrated with KVH® and FLIR® Products
GOST Watch HD VIP Series packages provide high-definition surveillance using a high-speed internet connection through the KVH line of mini-VSAT Broadband systems, along with a penta-band GSM/CDMA cellular data communicator for use when in cellular coverage areas. The KVH mini-VSAT has the ability for intelligent “best use” network management switch that will automatically prioritize cellular data via the GOST G3G-GSM/CDMA communicator when inside cellular range and will automatically switch the data feed to the KVH mini-VSAT pipe when the boat is outside of cellular coverage.
The new GOST Watch HD VIP Series Packages include everything needed to remotely monitor all activities on board the vessel from anywhere in the world via computer or smart phone over the internet. There are several different packages available to meet the needs of yacht owners and crews. These packages combine the KVH and cellular data modules with the assorted line of GOST cameras and IVR recorders accessible over the internet. Watch live video of the yacht as it leaves the harbor or view activities in the salon, staterooms or engine room via the GOST Watch HD website or iPhone and Android apps. Cameras can be set to record clips to the website based on motion detection and sent via email to the designated recipients. Camera motion detection can be armed and disarmed by using the included push button. The system can accommodate up to 6 cameras per login.
A winning trifecta to cover security concerns are readily available with the integration of GOST, KVH, and FLIR products.
Vessels equipped with the GOST Watch HD System and FLIR M-Series thermal night vision cameras will have access to remote streaming video surveillance of onboard cameras. Customers will be able to completely control their FLIR M-Series cameras as if they were on board with a FLIR ‘puck’ on screen that looks exactly like the puck used for control on board. The easy-to-use, web-based pan, tilt, zoom and mode control interface on the GOST Watch HD website works like the control puck on board, with a few modifications that enhance the capabilities for remote surveillance. The most noteworthy of these modifications is a one touch “Surveillance Scan” button that instantly performs a peripheral sweep of the area immediately surrounding the vessel.
GOST Watch HD allows users to remotely monitor up to six analog cameras per login at one time to capture activity onboard and around a vessel from anywhere in the world over the internet using any computer or smartphone. GOST Watch HD apps allow customers to access and view their cameras with the touch of a button from their iPhone or Android devices.
The award-winning M-Series is FLIR’s premier line of maritime thermal night vision systems. Single-payload (thermal only) and dual-payload (thermal and lowlight or color video) M-Series are housed in a rugged, waterproof gimbal enclosure with 360° pan and 90° tilt fields for horizon-to-horizon visibility. http://www.gostglobal.com; http://www.kvh.com; http://www.flir.com