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The last few years have brought a wave of electronic innovations to boating. Some of these technologies have made their way down from the commercial marine and automotive worlds; all have been adapted to better suit the needs of yachtsmen and anglers. Digital switching is rapidly replacing on-board analog electronic systems.

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Superior safety, ease of operation and remote-control functions are just some of the reasons analog will soon sound as dated as knob-and-tube wiring. And no sector of the marine market has benefited more from electronic innovations than fishermen, who have at their disposal tools that provide more detail on their wily prey, fathoms below the surface, than the TSA has on the contents of your pockets. The experts explain.

Simrad’s ForwardScan forward-looking echosounder technology delivers a clear picture of the water column and bottom in front of the boat. Not a fishfinding sonar, ForwardScan can help boaters as they navigate in difficult waters. ForwardScan transducer: $699.

The low-priced Lowrance Elite-3X gives you a sunlight-viewable color image, showing fish target icons, bottom contours and structures. Its transducer can track bottom up to 75 mph. $100.

The new Ray70 is a multifunction VHF with GPS and AIS receivers, loud hailer and intercom. It has an easy-to-read LCD with red backlighting and simple operation with intuitive icons and menus. $649.

Available in 7-, 8- and 12-inch multifunction displays, the Garmin GPSMAP 7400xsv and 7600xsv boast traditional HD-ID sonar, true dual 1-kW CHIRP sonar, and CHIRP DownVü and SideVü, providing a clear sonar image with excellent target resolution. $ $1,699.99-$3,999.99.

New from Furuno: FR8005 Series X-band radars ($10,720) with high-def technology

See related afticles:

- Making the switch

- Pity the fish

January 2015 issue