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|Standard Horizon Eclipse VHF Radio, Test One Soon!|
|Friday, 17 December 2010 08:49|
Standard Horizon announced their new crop of VHF radios, chartplotters, and other maeine electronics for the 2011 model year, and one in particular caught my eye: the Eclipse DSC+. These aren’t out on the market yet (they’re due out in January) so I haven’t been able to test one, but if you’re looking for a new yet inexpensive VHF, you might want to hold off until this unit can be thoroughly vetted. If it works like they say, it’ll be a winner.
There are several things about the Eclipse that set it apart from the competition, but the biggest eye-catcher is the price: with a list cost of $129, this radio is down-right cheap. Yet along with the low price tag, the unit has a strong list of features. For starters, it includes Standard Horizon’s ”Clear Voice Reduction,” which employs an integrated mic to pick up background noises like wind and droning engines, and cancels it out as you transmit. Secondly, it’s waterproof to JIS7 standards, which means it can survive a half-hour drowning 10 feet below the surface of the water. We hope your radio never meets this fate, but it gives you a serious confidence boost to know that it could take it. And finally, it has all of the features that are standard fare on a modern DSC VHF radio, like programmable scan, priority scan, and dual watch; NMEA0183 connectivity; weather alerts; and DSC test calling.
Standard Horizon is rolling out about a dozen other new products for 2011, including many that are much more advanced, and much more expensive. We’ll surely talk about them down the road a bit, but why start with the Eclipse? Because this will be the VHF of the masses, thanks to the small price tag and big list of features. Stay tuned - with the Miami show right around the corner gobs of new marine electronics are about to hit the market – and you’ll hear about them first, right here!