Garmin VHF 110 - Anybody using it? Reviews? Decent?

Discussion in 'Electronics Q&A' started by Stee6043, Jan 14, 2019.

  1. Stee6043

    Stee6043 Well-Known Member

    Jun 1, 2015
    West Michigan
    1997 Sundancer 400
    7.4L Gassers
    I have been a staunch supporter of Standard Horizon based on a prior purchase/research. I was set to buy another Standard Horizon this year but got to thinking about "matching" my VHF with the rest of the electronics I hope to eventually replace.

    If I go with Garmin chartplotters in the future I'm considering buying a Garmin VHF (the 110) instead of a Standard Horizon 1700. It'll look cleaner and I'm assuming it'll integrate nicely with Garmin chartplotters already running GPS (the 110 needs GPS from another source to support automatic distress calling).

    I'm curious if anyone else is using it. It's $70 +/- more than the Standard Horizon, not a lot in the grand scheme. Thanks in advance for your thoughts!
     
  2. Ezsteps

    Ezsteps Active Member PLATINUM Sponsor

    532
    Nov 14, 2015
    Lake St. Clair-- Michigan (MacRay Harbor)
    1999 400 Sundancer, YL310 Zodiac
    7.4 Mercuisers Horizons 380 hp ea., 9.9 hp Mercury
    Stee, I had a Garmin 110 installed last spring along with about everything else. I'm not the most techie guy so I don't use it to all it's potential probably. I can tell you that it does a great job for what I use it for. Everyone I talk to said it's nice and clear. I went with all Garmin and Fusion electronics which is why I chose the 110. I don't believe the 110 offers AIS (not sure about this though) so if you want that I think you have to step up a little. I kinda wish I would have.
     
  3. KevinC

    KevinC Well-Known Member

    Feb 25, 2011
    Long Island, NY
    2004 340 Sundancer
    1988 Proline Center Console - 90hp Mariner/Mercury
    1969 Boston Whaler
    Twin 8.1 V-drives
    The VHF is only going to need a NEMA connection to the plotter for GPS and MMSI (Many today do not even need that for DSC since they have their own internal GPS). If your upgrading why not look at something that can also provide AIS (reception) via NEMA to the plotter. I have been looking at the Lowrance Link-8 that comes with N2K support and AIS. (I went all Raymarine Axiom).

    -Kevin
     
  4. RollerCoastr

    RollerCoastr Well-Known Member

    Nov 15, 2007
    Cedar Point, OH / Miami, FL / MacRay Harbor, MI
    1997 400DA
    340HP 7.4 Mercruiser Bluewaters
    Garmin 741, 742, 8212, 24HD, Intellian I2
    1999 280BR
    Twin 250HP Merc 350 Alpha Ones
    A good friend of mine installed one last summer. I programmed his MMSI and have used it a few times. It seems like a very nice unit. Having said that, similar logic steered me to buy my VHF200 a few years ago, and I regret it.

    I knew going in that Garmin's price-to-features ratio is poor, but I had a dash full of Garmin gear already and planned to expand that, so I was willing to forego features such as AIS reception in favor of integration.

    Aesthetics are the best selling point. For the first season, I used the silver bezels on the radio. When I later upgraded the MFD's, I swapped the silver trim bezels for black so everything matched.

    It goes downhill after that. The "integration" is pathetic. You can initiated a DSC call from an MFD, but it has to be finalized on the radio. They communicate for MOB functions, but that's about where this "integration" stops. The DSC "address book" isn't shared, so when I enter a friend's MMSI number into the plotter, the radio doesn't see it. I have to enter it separately into the radio (and further frustrating me is that now I have to use reading glasses to make sure I don't make a mistake with that tiny screen).

    If I had the chance to do it over, I'd spend less money for more features with another brand.
     
  5. Stee6043

    Stee6043 Well-Known Member

    Jun 1, 2015
    West Michigan
    1997 Sundancer 400
    7.4L Gassers
    Awesome feedback, fellas. Thank you!

    Kevin - to get AIS I'd have to spend another $400-500. I'm so far not convinced AIS is a worthy investment for the casual great lakes boater. I'll take one or two "long" trips per year, max. Relative to ocean ports we have very little commercial traffic as well. I could be convinced otherwise, for sure. What benefits are you specifically looking for from AIS?

    Roller - your post is why I posted...ughhh. I am currently struggling with the better featured, lower cost Standard Horizon vs the nicer looking, "integrated" Garmin. The folks I generally boat with are not using DSC so the calling feature isn't super important to me (currently). Having the distress button available for my wife is 99% of the reason I even know about DSC. So if the integration is sub-par I'm still firmly on the fence here...or maybe trending toward Standard Horizon...

    Thanks again, gentlemen.
     
    RollerCoastr likes this.
  6. RollerCoastr

    RollerCoastr Well-Known Member

    Nov 15, 2007
    Cedar Point, OH / Miami, FL / MacRay Harbor, MI
    1997 400DA
    340HP 7.4 Mercruiser Bluewaters
    Garmin 741, 742, 8212, 24HD, Intellian I2
    1999 280BR
    Twin 250HP Merc 350 Alpha Ones
    Kevin is talking about AIS reception. AIS transmitters are still very expensive. Receivers aren't.

    I'd use it each time I'm out because the western basin of Lake Erie is packed with ferries, some of which cruise at 35 knots. It would be awesome if I could get a heads-up on my plotters...
     
  7. Michael Mirra

    Michael Mirra Member

    102
    Jan 18, 2017
    Rock Hall, Md
    360 Sundancer 2002
    8.1 Horizon X 2
    I purchased one for the same reason, to match the rest of my new electronics. Definitely more than you need to spend but I’m happy and it works great so I don’t mind spending a little more to have all Garmin
     
    Stee6043 likes this.
  8. Stee6043

    Stee6043 Well-Known Member

    Jun 1, 2015
    West Michigan
    1997 Sundancer 400
    7.4L Gassers
    Am I assuming incorrectly that a radio such as the Garmin VHF 210 would both transmit and receive AIS data?

    https://buy.garmin.com/en-US/US/p/545957
     
  9. Jaybeaux

    Jaybeaux Active Member SILVER Sponsor

    365
    Jan 3, 2016
    Upper Potomac River
    420 Sundancer 2004
    Naught On Call
    Cummins 6CTA-8.3's with V-Drives
    9KW Onan Genset
    You are assuming incorrectly. It is an AIS receiver only.

    Stay in Contact on the Water
    • Displays Automatic Identification System (AIS) on the chartplotter
    • Standard Class D Digital Selective Calling (DSC) functionality (distress calling and direct calling with user programmed MMSI)
    • In case of trouble, DSC may improve your chances of a rapid rescue
    • 25 W of transmit power
    • Frequency bands: all U.S., Canadian and international marine channels; 10 NOAA weather channels
    A while back there was a discussion about AIS, and the need to receive only or to be able to transmit and receive. When you only have "receive" capability, the big boys cannot see you, but you can see them. When I do my upgrades, I'm getting both send/receive functionality.

    Jaybeaux
     
    RollerCoastr likes this.
  10. RollerCoastr

    RollerCoastr Well-Known Member

    Nov 15, 2007
    Cedar Point, OH / Miami, FL / MacRay Harbor, MI
    1997 400DA
    340HP 7.4 Mercruiser Bluewaters
    Garmin 741, 742, 8212, 24HD, Intellian I2
    1999 280BR
    Twin 250HP Merc 350 Alpha Ones
    Also note that Garmin has apparently decided that AIS reception isn't worthy of a model designation of its own:

    The 210 comes with or without an AIS receiver. The 215 has built-in GPS, also with or without AIS receiver.
     

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