New gear: Garmin GPSMap 79s

The new Garmin GPSMap 79s is designed to be a robust and flexible handheld chartplotter with a multitude of useful functions.

Launched in late 2021 to a great fanfare, the Garmin GPSMap 79s is positioned as a timely update to the popular GPSMap 78.

The new unit boasts a staggering 25 times the resolution of the previous model. Its sunlight-readable colour TFT display runs to 240 x 400 pixels, and it is 26 per cent larger at 3in diagonal size.

It can remember up to 10,000 waypoints and 250 routes on a built-in basemap. But it also supports Bluechart g3 charting for really detailed navigational read-outs. That’s helpful when you’re circling for a good anchoring spot or wondering if you can cut inshore of that rock.

You can download Garmin’s detailed Bluechart g3 charts onto the GPS via the Garmin Express app. Or buy them as micro-SD cards that you simply slot in to the bay on the side of the handset.

The GPSMap 79s would make a very useful back-up aboard the boat. Also handy at the helm if your main plotter is mounted below or by the companionway. It provides course and speed over the ground. And it is perfect for exploring by kayak or in a small tender.

A three-axis compass compensates for tilt to give you an accurate digital read out on the way the GPS handset is pointing. That way you can orient yourself even if you’re not moving.

And it supports GPS signals from numerous satellite constellations, including Galiuleo, Glonass and the Japanese QZSS systems. It can also process signals from satellite-based augmentation systems which correct and refine GPS readings.

The Garmin GPSMap 79s is naturally waterproof and it is designed to float if it is dropped overboard.

Battery life amounts to a decent 19 hours on two standard AA batteries. But Garmin advises lithium or NiMH batteries for longer life.

RRP is £299.

Buy the Garmin GPSMap 79s from Garmin

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Source: Yachting Monthly

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