The Garmin GPSMAP 547xs is another high-tech device from the famous Manufacturer of the Year for 2015 that combines the functions of a sonar and a chart plotter.
Garmin has done its best to equip you with software that can enhance your fishing experience; unfortunately, however, the transducer has to be bought separately for this model. Still, the Garmin GPSMAP 547xs Receiver is compatible with a wide variety of transducers, one of which you may already own.
One example is Garmin’s trademarked CHIRP system, an advanced piece of equipment that provides photo-quality images from beneath the surface of the water. Let’s take a closer look at this device.
What Is It?
- The Garmin GPSMAP 547xs is a dual-frequency and dual-beam capable combination chart plotter and fish finder with built-in Garmin CHIRP and/ DownVu technologies and wireless connectivity. The GPS/GLONASS receiver is 10Hz, and supports frequencies of 50, 77 and 200 kHz.
- The maximum depth for Garmin GPSMAP 547xs scanning is 2000 feet (610 meters), but the figure can vary depending on the type of water and the conditions on the bottom. The power output is 1000W.
- The device has the slots for 2 microS cards and an inbuilt memory sufficient for 5000 waypoints and 100 routes. It can save up to 50 tracks.
- Garmin GPSMAP 547xs has a 5-inch bright color display with 480 x 640 resolution.
- The device weighs 1.7 pounds (0.8 kilograms) and measures 5.9 x 6.1 x 2.4 inches (15.0 x 15.5 x 6.1 centimeters)
- The device measures the water temperature (log and graph) and has the function of history rewind.
Why Buy It?
Garmin, the pioneer of GPS navigation and wireless connection and the Manufacturer of the Year for 2015 (as judged by the NMEA) is an innovator and first-class manufacturer. Garmin GPSMAP 547xs includes numerous features that make it a first-class combo, so let’s take a look at the most significant ones.
- Built-in sonar. The receiver has a built-in sonar that is compatible with many transducers, such as DownVu, CHIRP, Minn Kota, Motor Guide and gWind. The only problem is having to buy the transducer as a separate item.
- Garmin is especially proud of its trademarked CHIRP transducer, which sends a range of frequencies (instead of just one) and interprets each of them individually. The result is images with remarkable target separation, with exceedingly precise readings even at high speeds and significant depths.
- The Garmin GPSMAP 547xs is compatible with iOS and Android tablets and smartphones. You do not have depend on the device’s screen anymore; instead, use the color display of your phone or tablet; for Apple products, Garmin offers the BlueChart Mobile, an application that will let you plot your maps right on your Apple device! Also, if you have another device that stores your routes or waypoints, you can easily transfer this information to your Garmin GPSMAP 547xs via GPX, the technology created for GPS data exchange.
- The high-resolution, bright and large display can be viewed in direct sunlight, which is a significant advantage for those who do not want to use their tablets as the screen.
- Waterproof. The Garmin GPSMAP 547xs has IPX7 water rating, which means that it can survive the pressure of 3 feet of water for half an hour. So you still don’t want it to dive, but you can be sure that the device can withstand some sprinkles and splashes.
- Additional capabilities. The Garmin GPSMAP 547xs has features that provide you with sailing-relevant information, such as wind angle and speed. The device presents this data in the form of easy-to-read graphs and bars. There is also NMEA 2000 Support and the ability to connect to the network of GPSMAP devices to share the data with other Garmin users.
- Keep in mind that this device is a chart plotter as well, with a number of features designed to improve this particular function. These include the possibility of storing the chart data in the built-in memory, sharing it with others and transferring it with the help of microSD. The device offers the option of auto-guidance: it can plot your course automatically to a given location and provide all the relevant information for the trip there and back. As the icing on this cake, there are the preinstalled BlueChart g2 coastal and LakeVu HDinland maps from Garmin. When making a combination device like this, it is necessary to take care of both the functions, which the Garmin GPSMAP 547xs does very well.
What Are The Drawbacks?
- The package includes the receiver with the cable and mounting equipment (the mount and its kit), a guide and even a protective cover. But, as we said, there is no transducer! You can find an upgraded and more expensive package that includes a transducer, though, for example here. At the same time, as we have mentioned, the device is compatible with several types of transducers, and you may be able to use a transducer you already have, or to use one that you purchase for this unit with other devices.
- The Garmin GPSMAP 547xs has a great many features, which means that you will want to study the manual closely to get the most out of it. Again, it is up to you to decide whether this is a disadvantage or a plus: there is always a trade-off between ease of use and functionality.
To sum up, the Garmin GPSMAP 547xs is a state-of-the-art combination device. The manufacturer seems to have thought of everything when it comes to creating a chart plotter/fish finder, including its trademark solutions for most of the challenges. It is therefore not surprising that the Garmin GPSMAP 547xs has received positive reviews from its users. To sum up, if you are interested in a top-notch chartplotter/fish finder, be sure to consider the Garmin GPSMAP 547xs.