There are always tons of new fishfinders and chartplotters hitting the market, but usually they come from a handful of big companies. If none of the offerings from those companies is exactly what you want, you’re out of luck. Not this time—there’s a pair of new units being introduced from Si-Tex, the SVS-460 and SVS-560.
First, the specs: the 460 has a 4.3″ color LCD display, and the 560 has a 5″ display. That means most of us will be interested in the 560, a combination fishfinder/chartplotter unit. It pings through the depths with a 600-watt dual-frequency blast, and listens for the GPS signals with a 52-channel receiver. The antenna is built-in, and chartography comes courtesy of either C-Map or Navionics.
Both units are NMEA0183 compatible, and both are quite affordable ($459 for the SVS 460 and $699 for the SVS 560). This all sounds just fine, right? But, why wouldn’t you simply go with one of the units manufactured by one of those big marine electronics companies? It all boils down to personal preference. Some people’s brains simply mesh with one menu system better or worse than another, and each manufacturer has their own idea of the “easiest” way to use a fishfinder or a chartplotter. If none of those you’ve tried thus far seems to get along with your own personal gray matter, these new Si-Tex units give you another option to try.
My advice, when choosing a new unit? Go to a number of stores, and press buttons like crazy. Maximize your options, and sooner or later, you should find a unit that cooperates with your brain.