North Wales Kayak Fishing

The Standard Horizon GX1700 GPS vhf radio is a multifunction device packed with features it is the first vhf radio with a built in GPS antenna in the uk full technical specifications can be found in the picture link below

 

This is my review of the Standard Horizon GX1700 GPS vhf radio

The first thing you notice when this radio arrives is the superb packaging a very sturdy box with superbly printed graphics and solid information the radio is packaged in a sturdy cardboard liner box all of the parts are packaged individually in plastic sleeves to keep everything safe during shipping.

The instruction manual is superb it is very well written and easy to understand giving lots of good information to the user and easy to use menu tables

 

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This radio feels and looks total quality every corner and edge is rounded no sharp bits to catch your fingers the front facia plastics are all contoured and have a stippled effect finish.

This is a full kit it contains a mounting stand, side locking nuts, mike clip and even some clip on ferrite interference barrels.

 

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On the front of the radio it boasts a large easy read display and large soft function buttons the volume and squelch have rotary control all the other functions are from the soft buttons.

 On the top left hand corner of the front panel is a built in GPS antenna.

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Large soft touch multifunction buttons are easy to use they have a positive

Select when they are pressed so you so you can feel a soft click when they are used.

 These are large buttons which makes the radio easy to use specially when you have cold wet hands

 

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The radio comes with a fixed multi function fist mike which has buttons to allow easy use channel up/down, calling channel and hi / low transmit wattage.

The TX button on the side of the microphone has a positive click when used it is just the right size to fit in the hand comfortably and transmit.

The contoured plastic of the hand unit give a solid grip so it will not slip from your hand.

 

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The rear of the unit has an antenna connection, and wiring harness it also has a socket for an additional controller microphone in most cases only the red and black battery wires are needed together with antenna connection but additional wiring is included in the harness just in case you should want to connect the units gps to an external chart plotter.

 

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This unit has a very narrow footprint from front to back it is aprox 3.5 inches this means it can be fitted in smaller places or flush mounted without needing massive backspace the radio comes complete with a fitted heat sink protective cover this is a great addition to the unit, This is a safety precaution to protect you or soft surface from the heat of the heat sink all radios get hot during prolonged use but I would say this cover has probably just set the standards other Manufacturers will try to follow.

 

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Using the GX1700E could not be easier large multifunction buttons allow for easy custom programming and a large format screen so its easy to see and read when the radio is turned on it automatically looks for satellites and triangulates your GPS position this is then displayed in real time it also has a very accurate clock which gets its time from the built in satellite GPS receiver

 

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Customizations can be done through easy scroll menu’s simply move to the section required using the soft keys and channel up/down buttons.

The screen view has several options moving between options takes just a few seconds and is easily done with just a few simple menu clicks

 

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The compass option screen shows a digital compass, time clock, channel number and GPS position.

 Where this radio becomes a multifunction device is with the built in GPS

This can store way points as well as a start point so you can always find your way back to the spot you started from or mark the hotspot you’re fishing in and get right back to it anytime.

 When an MMSI number is programmed in to the radio it then becomes DSC enabled so if you have a problem you simply press the protected DSC button this will tell the rescuers exactly where you are via the GPS co-ordinates.

One great feature of this GPS system is the man over board function which allows instant marking of a particular position so if your fishing on the drift and suddenly hit a hot spot you can mark it instantly using the man over board function button and go right back to it drift after drift though it is not designed for this it is designed to mark the position of a man over board.

 

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Another option for the display is the satellite acquisition screen this shows the number of available satellites their signal strength and your Gps position

 

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Using the radio and built in GPS is very easy it took a couple of hours to read the manual and press all the buttons but the easy scroll menus make it easy to navigate the set up most of it is done for you this radio can be used straight out of the box with no programming needed.

 It has a multitude of features in fact so many I could write several pages on them but to keep this review simple I have picked out only a fraction of what it can do but I would strongly recommend reading the official specifications on the Standard Horizon web site .

The user manual of this radio is superb it has everything in it you need to know from the most complicated customization to the simplest its very well written and easy to follow.

 

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Standard Horizon have set a new level here by integrating the VHF radio and fully featured internal GPS system all in one small unit  this is I hope the way boat electronics will continue to evolve Standard Horizon confidently stand by their new products with a 3 year warranty.

During our tests we found the unit very easy to operate and set up the clarity of the communications was second to none and the Gps outstanding.

 

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