Updated on 30 September 2013 by

Marine GPS units are a necessity rather than a convenience when going on voyages or out to the sea. The handheld marine units typically are used when using it in smaller water bodies. They complement the existing built-in navigational units and provide added accuracy in mapping routes.

Most noticeable products are the handheld marine GPS from Garmin, Magellan. They are similar to the ones found in automobiles while being water proof. Fish finder, chart plotters, arrival alarms, battery alarms, collision alarms, man overboard alarms are some of the features which form the basic essentials of any of the best handheld marine GPS units.

Compared to the fixed GPS, the handheld marine devices are lighter with smaller screen sizes. This restricts their chart displaying/mapping capabilities to some extent. Being IPX rated means they are also waterproof and water resistant. These can even double up for land navigational use providing accurate directions and routes.

The handheld marine GPS should have the best receivers with 12 channels in place as getting lost out at sea is not an option. When buying a device it is recommended to opt for ones with radio transmission facility for use in case of emergencies. Models which are WAAS enabled and have built-in antennas are adequate but external antennas are better for clearer reception of signals. As with all other GPS units, tough designs to without stand outer environment, screens for displaying in both day/night conditions should be top priority when selecting a handheld marine GPS. All these combine to make your water bound experience safe and enjoyable.


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Garmin Oregon 400
Garmin eTrex H
Garmin GPSMAP 60
Garmin GPSMAP 6212
Garmin GPS 17X
Garmin Colorado 400c Handheld GPS Receiver
Garmin Usa 010-00631-10 Etrex H Portable Navigator
Garmin GPSMAP 60CS GPS Receiver
Garmin GPSMAP 6212 GPS Receiver
Garmin GPS 17X GPS
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Release Date
Jul 2008
Jul 2001
Nov 2005
Mar 2010
Aug 2009
Designation
Marine
Marine
Marine
Automobile, Marine
Marine
Form Factor
Handheld
Handheld
Handheld
Handheld
Handheld
Map capabilities
Internal
Internal, Download maps
Map cartridges / Data cards
Download maps
Receiver type
12 Channels
12 Channels
12 Channels
Enhanced accuracy
WAAS enabled
WAAS enabled
WAAS enabled
WAAS enabled
WAAS enabled
Input Method
Keypad
Keypad
Touch Screen
Touch Screen
Screen Size
1.53 inch
2.4 inch
2.7 inch
User interface
Touch Screen
Keypad
Touch Screen
Touch Screen
Average Rating
 4.0 stars
 4.0 stars
 3.5 stars
 n stars
 n stars
Display
54% Positive
46% Negative
100% Positive
100% Positive
100% Positive
Navigation
66% Positive
34% Negative
75% Positive
25% Negative
60% Positive
40% Negative
100% Positive
Maps
83% Positive
17% Negative
66% Positive
34% Negative
100% Positive
Usability
66% Positive
34% Negative
66% Positive
34% Negative

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