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What marine electronics do you need on the boat?

Marine electronics are devices for navigation and communication aboard a boat or ship. With the rapid expansion of technology, marine electronics have developed to many equipment . Almost all the marine communication and navigation equipment you need can be found the site , with excellent quality and low prices!

What electronics do I need on my boat?

The boat devices you need depend on boat type, how, and where you boat. A tow boat used for watersports on a lake doesn’t need much other than a speedometer. In contrast, a sailboat used for passage making needs a full suite, including a chartplotter, radar, depth sounder, Compass , Gyro , fax weather , navtex , Inmarsat and more.


Let’s dive a little deeper and look at 10 essential boat electronic devices:

  1. Multifunction Displays (MFDs)
  2. Chartplotter
  3. Radar
  4. Autopilot
  5. Wind instruments
  6. Depth sounder
  7. AIS
  8. Navigation light and Navigation Light Control Panel
  9. VHF radio
  10. MF / HF and SSB radios

Multifunction Displays, also known as MFDs, are LCDs (buttons or touchscreen) that connect the user with various functions on a boat.

Although they were thought of as a display for cartography (chartplotters) first, MFDs have become the central command of marine electronics.

ONWA model : KMR-7 as below :

  1. Chartplotters

A chartplotter is used for navigation on the water and is like the navigation system in your car.

It combines GPS with marine cartography and is an electronic chart (map) to determine where you are and the best route for where you want to go.

You can try ONWA series , for small size : KP-27 series , For bigger size , you can choose the model : KM-8 or KM-12 series .  Or you can buy the Xinuo model : XF-520 , XF-607 , XF-808 series gps plotter .

  1. Radar

Radar (radio detection and ranging) uses radio waves to determine your surroundings. It is beneficial at times of limited visibility, such as nighttime or fog.

Radar shows the distance, angle, and velocity of objects (boats or land-based sites) relative to your position. Radar can be sensitive enough to show rain squalls and includes an antenna (closed or open array) and a display like an MFD.

ONWA  KR-1008 , KR-1068 , KR-1238 , KR-1268 , KR-1538 , KR-1568 , KR-1968H marine radar , you can also choose the model : KM-12X or KM-8X and use the KRA-1007N or KRA-1009N network radar antenna .


  1. Autopilot

Autopilot is the self-steering mechanism that can hold a pre-set course. Some autopilots will steer to a compass course or to the wind direction.

This device will steer to a waypoint, but they’re not set-it-and-forget-it gadgets. They don’t pick up what’s between your boat and the waypoint like other boats! So remain vigilant even when you use autopilot.

ONWA  KAP-866 Auto Pilot ,  SY-288 GPS for fishing boat or VAP-30S for commercial vessel .


  1. Wind Instruments

Wind instruments are small MFDs that provide specific information on wind velocity and angle. This is critical information for sailors, but any boater can benefit from knowing how the wind acts as a force on their boat. This feature comes in especially handy when docking or anchoring!

ONWA  KW-360 Ultrasonic Wind sensor ,

Ninglu  AM-707  Wind speed and direction anemometer,

CNFT  AMC718  Ultrasonic wins speed and direction anemometer.

IR762 and IR761  Ninglu Weather speed and direction repeater

  1. Depth Sounder

A depth sounder tells you the depth of the water. A transducer is mounted on or through the hull and sends radio signals. The rate at which the signal returns determines the depth of the water column.

You can incorporate offsets to give yourself a margin of safety. Just be sure you know whether the measurement is from the water’s surface or the bottom of the keel, or you could find yourself short. This information is displayed on your MFD’s screen.

K-Fish 7 ONWA ,  HF-620  Huayang


  1. AIS

AIS (automatic identification system) is a short-range tracking system with radar to track targets (other vessels). Its primary purpose is collision avoidance as it follows the speed, bearing, and even names of boats around you.

Huayang HA-102 Class B AIS transponder , HAR-100 , AIS Receiver ,

ONWA  KP-27A , KP-39A , KS-200A SART etc AIS products.

Class A AIS : CNFT  FT-8800 ,  Xinuo  XA-198  Class A AIS transponder

  1. Compass

The magnetic compass supply heading for you navigation , although there is gps product on the boat , but normal a traditional compass is need for no power or electronic fault .

Imarinex website have many compass for you choose , if small boat , you can choose the small compass such as : CPQ-100 or YQ-50A / YQ-50F etc ,

For bigger boat, you can buy the model CPT-130A , if commercial ship , you need buy the CPT-165 projection magnetic compass .

  1. Navigation light and control panel

Starboard, Port light, Masthead light, Stern Light, All-Round light) . normal need 5 different color light to let other boat find you when navigating on the night .

And you need a Navigation Light control panel to control each light .

DK-H / DK-XS /DK-HX series.

  1. VHF Radio

Very High Frequency, or VHF, radios operate at line-of-sight, which means they can be heard approximately 2-3 miles away. This may vary on your antenna height or if there’s anything (like an island) in the way.

VHF radios can be fixed mount (attached ship’s station) or handheld (portable). VHF radios may communicate with other boats, marinas, bridges, and the Coast Guard.

Once a handheld radio is taken to shore, it cannot be used for personal transmissions. Anyone with a VHF can hear anyone who is transmitting. You should be careful about the information you share.


  1. MF /HF SSB Radio

A Single Sideband, or SSB, the radio operates as a point-to-point, two-way communication for long distances. It is HF (high frequency), uses radio wave propagation, and is used by offshore vessels.

The key to shopping for marine electronics is understanding what your boat can accommodate and what you need. We hope our list of 10 marine electronics to know is helpful to you.

CETCME  WT-6000 ,  WT-B150  MF/HF Radio

CNFT   FT-7500



Imarinex One-stop ship communication and navigation supplier, originating from China, serving the world.

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