SmartCraft NMEA2000 Gateway vs. Vessel View -- what must-have extras does VV provide?

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by mobocracy, Jan 23, 2018.

  1. mobocracy

    mobocracy Member

    274
    Jun 29, 2014
    United States
    310 Sundancer
    350 Mag & Bravo III
    I have the original NorthStar 6000i and SC5000 display on my 2007 310 DA. In looking at electronics replacements, it kind of seems like the SC5000 should be replaced.

    If I don't replace the SC5000 with a newer Vessel View unit and instead get a SmartCraft NMEA2000 gateway, what do I lose in terms of engine/systems monitoring? I know Vessel View has some MFD/chartplotter like functionality. Right now on my SC5000, I mostly see it valuable for real-time engine display and for mirroring the plotter's depth and water temperature.

    From what I've been able to sort out it would be cheaper for me to do the SmartCraft NMEA2000 gateway and a pair of Raymarine Axiom-9s, with the advantage that I'd have two networked MFDs and give me a lot more flexibility in terms of display setup. The VesselView 7 upgrade is fairly expensive and leaves me with kind of mismatched displays/functionality.

    Is the increased cost of a VesselView 7 upgrade worth it in terms of systems monitoring?

    I feel like I wouldn't be losing any current use functionality with the SC NMEA2k gateway piped to a regular MFD.
     
  2. alnav

    alnav Member

    794
    Sep 16, 2009
    West River, MD
    40 MY
    QSB 425
    I did a complete electronics replacement last year and went with the VesselView 4, the smaller Smartcraft display. It does have a NMEA 2000 interface so engine data is available to the MFDs. My concern with only having a gateway was that MFD screen space has to be given up to view engine data. The VV4 saved me some dash space compared to the VV7 and is about half the price. The VV4 lets me see engine data continuously without having to change an MFD screen. I can dive deeper on either the VV4 or the MFD displays if needed. I believe you might lose the ability to see fault codes without one of the Smartcraft displays. I don't think I can do that on my Garmin units, not sure about Raymarine.
     
  3. mobocracy

    mobocracy Member

    274
    Jun 29, 2014
    United States
    310 Sundancer
    350 Mag & Bravo III

    I agree that two screens — plotter and smartcraft is better than one and constant page flipping or limited split screen views are a problem. I guess I hadn’t considered VV4 plus MFD as an alternative, although I wonder if the flexibility of two identical networked 9” displays with Smartcraft data isn’t even more beneficial for everyday use. The loss of fault codes seems a disadvantage but maybe less so if you’re not actually going to do a lot of your own wrenching.

    Now I’m wondering if I can fit a single 12” mfd and a vv4 on the helm.
     
  4. wyrman

    wyrman Member

    854
    Jul 12, 2012
    Tri-Cities, Wa
    2007 310 Sundancer
    Twin 350's, V drives
    I'm watching this thread, as I want to upgrade also. I have been looking at the Garmin gpsmap 942xs and I would like to get rid of the old unit and not lose any function.
     

    Attached Files:

  5. mobocracy

    mobocracy Member

    274
    Jun 29, 2014
    United States
    310 Sundancer
    350 Mag & Bravo III
    My perception is that Mercury has kind of bloated VesselView with a bunch of MFD-type features (I think the 7s and 9s are actually Simrad GO XSE based). Other than detailed diagnostic trouble codes, I don't know that I want to spend $2k for a 7" screen *just* to get engine monitoring details and a bunch of lesser MFD features which don't network with my MFD of choice. If I want waitpoints, GPS, etc, etc, I want that on my MFD.

    This is why the SC->NMEA2k gateway seems appealing -- I can spend my money on dual networked MFDs that work together and still get SC engine management data.

    Without actually using it, though, I have this nagging fear that I'm losing some SmartCraft data ONLY visible on a VesselView screen. I can probably live with that if its just minor diagnostic fault info.
     
  6. Captn TJ

    Captn TJ Active Member

    303
    Sep 19, 2017
    Catawba Island, Oh
    2005 280DA
    Raymarine E80
    5.0 with Bravo 3
    I'll be watching as well re: N2K gateway for my 5.0 Mercruisers. Having that info feed a large MFD will keep me from having to keep looking down to read the SC gauges on my 280.
     
  7. LG111

    LG111 Active Member

    416
    Jan 4, 2015
    NW
    410
    8.1
    Consider VV mobile? It' a bolt on to your existing or single use. Just put it on my twin 2001 8.1S and have full visibility of all major functions right down to mpg live burn per engine or combined. I can see all on my phone or better I bought a 10" tablet. Also Linked to the web, my data is availbe off the boat or linked to my mechanic for live trouble shooting if needed. And the cost is cheep in boat bucks!

    Mark
     
    Todd320 likes this.
  8. mobocracy

    mobocracy Member

    274
    Jun 29, 2014
    United States
    310 Sundancer
    350 Mag & Bravo III
    That sounds like a reasonable compromise that adds more intensive trouble codes or data but without a larger Vessel View screen based purchase. Smarcraft NMEA2K gateway to get real-time data on regular MFDs and then VV Mobile for when you want more detailed info only available on Vessel View.
     
  9. Captn TJ

    Captn TJ Active Member

    303
    Sep 19, 2017
    Catawba Island, Oh
    2005 280DA
    Raymarine E80
    5.0 with Bravo 3
    Does anyone have info on VV mobile - cost, ease of installation. When I went on line it pointed me to a dealer.
     
  10. mobocracy

    mobocracy Member

    274
    Jun 29, 2014
    United States
    310 Sundancer
    350 Mag & Bravo III
    Some decent information here: https://mercury.vesselviewmobile.com/#/

    The FAQ makes it seem like plug and play -- just plug into your existing SmartCraft junction box and then configure the app on your phone.

    A downvote for a lot of Mercury's "contact your Mercury Marine dealer" stuff on their web site. Most Mercury Marine dealers sell outboards or are principally in the regular maintenance business, and aren't a great place to go for "I want this Mercury accessory or upgrade". They either won't know or will just tell you to buy a new boat.
     
  11. Jeremygavin

    Jeremygavin Member SILVER Sponsor

    723
    Mar 6, 2012
    Cape Cod, MA
    2005 Sea Ray 340 Sundancer, 2016 Sea Ray 19 SPX OB
    496 Mercruisers with Bravo IIIs, Mercury 150 Fourstroke
    I have the VV7 on my 340da and I have the VV mobile on my 19spx. I love the VV7 because of all the real time info I get on it. There are tons of ways to look at the info. I have travel screens, I have fuel screens, I have vitals screens for each engine and one for engines combined so it is great to really analyze the cars. I got the unlock antenea for it so I have it as a totally stand alone redundant GPS as well if something happens to my Ray marine E95

    The mobile version is great for my bow rider with the 150 merc fourstroke. You can do all the great screens that you can with VV7. I think I would want more info on my cruiser than the mobile version provides. One of the biggest problems for me is that the mobile version lacks oil pressure readings I can’t believe that I can’t see oil pressure. It is a great tool and is probably better than starting from scratch with smart craft wiring from the motors to the helm but it does have it limitations Compared to VV4 or 7
     
  12. Captn TJ

    Captn TJ Active Member

    303
    Sep 19, 2017
    Catawba Island, Oh
    2005 280DA
    Raymarine E80
    5.0 with Bravo 3
    For those that installed VV mobile. Is the connection on the engines or in back of the SC gauges? I understand from this video that's plug and play

     
  13. Jeremygavin

    Jeremygavin Member SILVER Sponsor

    723
    Mar 6, 2012
    Cape Cod, MA
    2005 Sea Ray 340 Sundancer, 2016 Sea Ray 19 SPX OB
    496 Mercruisers with Bravo IIIs, Mercury 150 Fourstroke
    On my 2016 merc 150 fourstroke on a 19spx that was NOT smartcraft wired it was on the front of the engine under the cowl. The VV mobile unit plugs into engine ECU and mounts under the cowl zip tied to the engine.
     
  14. LG111

    LG111 Active Member

    416
    Jan 4, 2015
    NW
    410
    8.1

    That has been resolved and updated. On my VV mobile I see every detail. Water pressure, water temp, oil pressure, oil temp, several burn rate measures. Fuel remaining, fuel burned, voltage, Speed, RPM.... And several more. All on one page. It' very very detailed.

    As for cost. I ordered all the parts on line. Most on Amazon. From scratch to finish twin engine I was at $500ish.

    Call a merc dealer tell them what you have and ask for the part numbers. The biggest cost is the BT transmitter at $275. The rest is cables, harnesses, bus blocks and terminators.

    On twin applications you'll need you mechanic to smarten the motors up so they know port and starboard. Took about 15 minutes. Once up and running I had three code errors due to not having two sensors like fuel tank VV harnesses. I blocked those code errors via the app. All good and Awesome !
     
  15. Jeremygavin

    Jeremygavin Member SILVER Sponsor

    723
    Mar 6, 2012
    Cape Cod, MA
    2005 Sea Ray 340 Sundancer, 2016 Sea Ray 19 SPX OB
    496 Mercruisers with Bravo IIIs, Mercury 150 Fourstroke
    That’s good to know. I wonder if just the updates activate it or if I have to update the vv mobile unit on the motor
     
  16. LG111

    LG111 Active Member

    416
    Jan 4, 2015
    NW
    410
    8.1
    The update is on the app side. The data on the engine is static. The BT sends everything it sees. It' how it's translated on the app. One area I see needs some tweaking from merc is the actual mpg. My burn between 3200 to 3600 is .7 mpg. But what I want to see the next decimal range from example .66 to .74. Those always defaut to the average .7. So that's a huge swing when trying to dial in 400 rpm.
     
  17. Bridog

    Bridog Well-Known Member GOLD Sponsor

    Oct 4, 2006
    Gulf Shores AL / Brick NJ
    2016 19SPX OB
    Mercury 150 4S OB
    Jeremy, I was wondering if you were able to get oil pressure readings after the update? I'm thinking of getting VV Mobile for my 19SPX OB. Thanks, Brian
     
  18. Jeremygavin

    Jeremygavin Member SILVER Sponsor

    723
    Mar 6, 2012
    Cape Cod, MA
    2005 Sea Ray 340 Sundancer, 2016 Sea Ray 19 SPX OB
    496 Mercruisers with Bravo IIIs, Mercury 150 Fourstroke
    I am not sure which update it came with but I used the boat last week and it now has oil pressure readings. I am very happy with the app and VVmobile. It give me the info I wanted without all the wiring and hassle.
     
  19. Bridog

    Bridog Well-Known Member GOLD Sponsor

    Oct 4, 2006
    Gulf Shores AL / Brick NJ
    2016 19SPX OB
    Mercury 150 4S OB
    Thanks, I'm going to go ahead and get it. I was on the fence when I heard it didn't show oil pressure.
     

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