Over time, communication has become a vital part of living. The need for communication established several devices’ inventions to perform the role better than the former.
Among these communication devices is the marine VHF radio, it is the most widely used communication device when exploring the water. The marine radio is a global system two-way radio transceivers mostly used on ships and watercraft. It is useful in bi-directional voice communication from a ship to shore, ship to aircraft, and ship to another.
The marine radio was the first commercially used radio technology that allows a ship to keep in touch with the shore, other ships, and sometimes aircraft. The radio makes use of sophisticated communication technology to provide off-shore and on-shore communication.
The device uses a very high radio band frequency ranging from 156MHz to 174MHz. An official language for the frequency band in ITU (International Telecommunication Union) is the “VHF maritime mobile band.” It is a licensed communication device that is serving its purpose massively and efficiently.
The radio has a limited small power that provides it a wide range to cover. The device and its accessories are installed on large ships as well as small ones. There are different regulations to its use on lakes, rivers, seas, oceans, and small water bodies.
The two-way device radio is useful for different purposes; traffic control, summoning rescue services, marine navigation, communicating with harbors, bridges, marinas, and locks. This communication system’s rise started when Marconi invented radio communications and installation on ships in the 1890s to 1900s.
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Considerations when choosing the GX1700
Before choosing a radio, there are specific factors you should look out for. These factors determine how efficient or useful the device can be to you. These are factors to consider before choosing your VHF radio.
The size of the radio is one important factor to consider when choosing your radio. There are different sizes of two-way radio, but most users prefer a more compact and handy one to a large type.
The size of the radio determines how easy it is to handle and control. It also determines the weight because the larger the radio, the heavier it will be. The GX1700 has a 9 x 4 x 9 inches product dimension, making it compact and handy, thus lightweight.
Its compact and handy feature allows it to weigh about 2.0lbs, making it easy to carry and use. The GX1700 has a compact structure and size that aids its efficiency.
Ease of Usage
What is the essence of a tool that is too complex to use? Getting a very easy to operate VHF radio should be a priority. Consider how easy it is to handle your two-way radio before getting it, as it might be useless if you can’t operate it.
This easy-to-use feature is one of the features GX1700 offers to every user. The device has a lot of easy-to-use features that ensure a good user experience for every user. The device is a wireless device that reduces the hassles of wirings and connections.
It has a case design that allows easy grip and mounting of the radio. It also has a large 3” LED that allows easy readings. There is also a user’s manual that makes the use and control of the tool very easy.
Signal Reception Strength
As a communication device, you must ensure you consider the signal reception strength before making your choice. The signal reception strength determines how clear and good the communication is over a specified distance. The signal reception also determines how far the two parties can be and still maintain a perfect communication system.
The GX1700 runs on a frequency range of 156MHz and 158MHz. The device has a sensitivity of 25µV and a rejection of 70dB. All these features constitute its signal reception strength providing the user with clear transmissions.
Battery Quality and Life
A wireless VHF radio makes use of a battery that has a source of power. The quality and lifespan of the battery matters when choosing the right radio for your use. The battery life and quality of the battery should be in consideration when making your choice.
The GX1700 is powered by a 12V battery that delivers about 5amps and 5 to 15 watts of power. The battery can also provide this electricity for a long period ensuring a longer efficiency and work time. The battery’s power ensures a wider range of transmission with ease.
Weather Alert Feature
Imagine a transceiver having two functions; a communication device and a weather forecasting device. A transceiver with these two functions is way above the conventional communication VHF radio.
One of the special features of the GX1700 is its weather alert feature. This feature is a one-of-a-kind feature that provides enhanced performance. The weather alert feature helps inform the user of pending or occurring weather conditions.
Ten pre-programmed NOAA and Canadian weather channels are easily selectable using dedicated WX keys. As an additional feature, the operator can set the GX1700 to monitor the WX channels and provide an audible alert informing you of pending weather conditions.
An electronic device’s ability to stay in the water and not get spoilt is not a common feature to come about all the time. This unique feature only applies to a few electronic devices and transceivers.
The GX1700 exhibits high waterproof ability. It has an IPX8 waterproof rating. This waterproof ability allows the radio to be submersible and still transmit effectively.
You can submerge the radio in water to a depth of 4.92ft for 30 minutes without negatively affecting its performance. The radio’s waterproof feature is so reliable that it has a warranty that covers its waterproof quality. It also ensures that the two-way radio’s efficiency remains top class regardless of whether it is below the water surface.
GPS Compass Display
Displaying location details like bearings, longitude, and latitudes alongside enabling transmissions between two parties is one feature you would want in your transceiver. Easy entering, saving, and navigating to a waypoint using the compass page is also an anticipated feature of two-way radio.
The GX1700 features a GPS compass display that improves its performance with additional features. The GPS ensures navigation giving the radio an additional function of navigation with its communication function. The GPS compass display is a unique feature of the GX1700.
It also has a GPS antenna built-in at the front panel that ensures reception when flush or bracket mounted. The GPS enhances navigation by providing information on latitude and longitude, SOG, COG, and time. It shows this information on the display screen.
The GX1700 can help enter and save about 100 waypoints with the GPS compass aid that can show your watercraft’s bearing, distance, etc. to waypoints.
Big, Bold, and Clear Display
A clear display function is essential in a communication radio. A transceiver without a clear display is not good, as the users will have to strain their eyes before seeing the displayed characters.
Another feature of the GX1700 is its monochrome display. The display of the device is of high quality, and that makes users read details easily. The radio uses an LED screen on the base radio’s surface to ensure a top-notch display.
With programmable soft keys, changeable channel names, and oversized dot-matrix LCD, the VHF radio provides enhanced display and high performance.
The LED screen ensures high contrast between characters to provide a very clear view. It also has big and bold characters. These big, bold, and clear characters ensure the user a clear display.
ClearVoice Noise Reduction Technology
One of the communication devices’ problems is the disturbance of the transmission caused by a whirly background sound. It is a common problem of VHF radios and an advantage if it does not affect one.
The GX1700 uses ClearVoice noise reduction technology. This feature ensures transmission efficiency and also ensures ease of usage on the part of the user. It gets rid of noise disturbance and allows crystal clear transmission.
Unlike other radios that give sounds like wind and engines during transmission, the GX1700 provides a crystal clear transmission without any ich. A noise reduction technology ensures the elimination of unwanted or background noise during transmission. This technology also provided channel selection and dedicated H/L, 16/9 keys.
Ultra-thin Case for Mounting
Having a thin case for a handheld transceiver is a feature that enhances the grip and control of the device. The ultra-thin rear case design ensures the enhanced performance of the device.
The structure and components of the GX1700 is an illustration of high quality and a top-rated design. The GX1700 features an ultra-thin compact rear case that is only 3-1/2” in depth. At times, it is half the depth of some VHF radios.
The ultra-thin case contributes to the lightweight and compact features of the GX1700. The case also allows a remote access microphone, which allows the full control of the radio.
The amount of electricity that powers a transceiver is vital in its performance and efficiency. The wireless device uses a battery to power up while wired ones need a power source connection.
The GX1700 is a wireless VHF radio that depends on the power of the battery to run. It uses a 12V battery that provides about 0.5 to 5A for its smooth running. The battery also provides 5 to 15 watts of power to ensure the device’s efficient and lasting performance.
Priority Scan, Programmable Scan, and Dual Watch
The GX1700 has a programmable scan setup to scan several numbers of without or with a priority channel. The priority scan also allows the transceiver to scan through different radio channels giving priority to a specific channel, mostly channel 16. The dual watch allows you to set up a scan between a channel and a priority channel.
The transceiver has a preset key that stores up to ten channels with scan functions.
DSC Position Polling
In times of trouble or help, DSC position polling is always very useful. It might be disastrous if a marine communication radio does not have this feature. You don’t have to worry because this feature is present in the GX1700.
The handheld transceiver has a DSC position feature that shares information on the vessel’s position with other DSC equipped watercraft. It does this using the position reporting and position requesting functions. You can request a vessel’s position or report your vessel’s position to other vessels with the push of a few buttons.
It can also show the position of a received DSC Distress or a position request call on a compatible chart plotter through simple steps. The GX1700 can be set up to poll the GPS position of different stations automatically.
Programmable Soft Keys
The textured push on soft keys is a feeling few VHF radio will offer to users. The soft keys in the handheld transceiver make handling it very easy and comfortable.
The handheld transceiver features programmable soft keys that provide the exact texture your finger needs when operating the device. Some transceivers feature hard keys that pose strain and sometimes cause a bruise on the fingers. Unlike these transceivers, the GX1700 has soft keys that make operation easier and more enhanced.
Integrated 12 Channels GPS
Integrated channels improve the performance of the radio and also provide convenience and comfortability to the operator. The wireless GPS has many advantages over the wired type of GPS, of which ease of usage is part.
The GX1700 has an internal 12 channel built in the front panel of the transceiver. The 12 channel GPS reduces the need for hassling with wiring the device to a GPS for DSC. The device makes use of a wireless connection to mark GPS positions.
How to Install Standard Horizon GX1700
Installing a marine VHF radio might be difficult, but GX1700 has made installation a lot easier. Installing the device requires simple and straightforward steps. Installing the transceiver might be difficult if you do not follow due procedures.
The transceiver is restricted to work-related operations and occupational use. The operator must know the requirements and conditions for the installation and exposure before venturing into the installation. The installation requires specific steps that include;
- Antenna installation.
- Mount the radio.
- Flush mount bracket (optional).
- Electrical connections.
- GPS accessories.
- Ram3 installation (optional).
- Place the antenna at least a meter away from passengers following the FCC RF exposure requirement.
- Place the antenna in a place that there won’t be a compromise to the signal strength.
Mount the Radio
- Ensure the radio is far from any compass to avoid deviation in the compass reading due to the speaker’s magnet.
- Create a connection to the antenna and power source.
- Create accessibility to the controls at the front panel.
- Create a nearby space for you to hang the microphone.
- Place the radio at least 3 feet from the antenna.
- Place the radio in a place there won’t be a disturbance in the GPS signal.
- Check the compass to notice deviation.
- Connect the antenna to the radio.
Flush Mount Bracket (optional)
- Use the given template to mark the position where to cut the rectangular hole.
- Cut out the rectangular hole and insert the transceiver.
- Fasten the bracket to the rear part of the transceiver.
- Turn the adjusting screw to increase the tension to make the transceiver firm against the mounting surface.
- Connect the power cord to any power source.
- If you intend to use an optional speaker, connect it to the radio.
- Check the electrical accessory if there is a need for change.
- Check the GPS time to check if it is correct and change it if it isn’t.
- Set the time area to your preferred location.
- Change the time display format to your preferred format.
- Change the COG to magnetic or true, as preferred by you.
- Connect the extension cord to the remote microphone 8-pin connector on the rear of the transceiver.
- Install the ferrite core remote station microphone to the extension cord and snap the two halves together.
- Attach the ferrite core close to the MIC plug.
- Wind a plastic tape around the core.
- Insert the table into the created hole, connect the gasket, and mount the base to the extension cord using the nuts.
- Drill four holes in the wall and then place the mounting base on the wall using screws.
- Put the rubber cap on the nuts, and the installation is complete.
The GX1700 is a versatile marine VHF radio used for different applications. The two-way radio is mostly useful in ships and other watercraft. You must have the device on a ship as it is a vital tool with great importance.
The GX1700 has a lot of importance, including weather forecasting, GPS location indicator, DSC distress call, time indicator, and lots more. The device is very easy to use and does not need a lot of experience before operating it. There is also a manual that gives procedures on how to use it.
The transceiver also has some unique features that make it very useful and exhibit high performance. The features and components of the GX1700 constitute its efficiency and performance. It is one of the best marine VHF radios you can get.