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Any plans to add wind data to A97 (Lighthouse)
12-18-16, 10:08 AM (This post was last modified: 12-19-16 03:06 PM by Chuck - Raymarine - Moderator.)
Post: #1
Any plans to add wind data to A97 (Lighthouse)
Hi guys,
It is winter time and therefor time to do the sort of boat work that can be done in the cabin with the heater on!

I am looking at updating my electronics a bit on my small cruising sailboat and adding wind instrumentation as well as a tridata (boat speed, depth, temp) through hull then finally integrating AIS information from my Standard Horizon GX2200 VHF.

I currently have an A97 with downvision that is unfortunately an early non-wifi version which greatly limits its usefulness since I generally do my planning in the evening with my tablet and don't generally bother to transfer waypoints to the A97.

It looks to me as though the way to do this if keeping with Raymarine would be to add an i70s, an ICT-5 then the related transducers.

Here's my quandary, I don't really want any other instruments in the cockpit if I can help it, that's sort of the whole point of an MFD. I know right now, the A97 does not display any wind data which means if I want wind, I need to add another display which is sort of leading me towards jumping ship and switching over to a complete third party system. In retrospect, I think the A97 was probably not the ideal choice for a sailboat but of course there is a certain inertia to what is already installed and I do really like the unit.

So my direct questions are:

Is there any plan to add useful wind data to the A series MFDs via a lighthouse update any time soon?

Is there a way to update a non-wifi A97 to Wifi?

I really would like to stick with Raymarine gear and am certainly willing to spend money to do so but I'm having a hard time seeing a path that ends up a slick and simple as just switching to a third party system and plugging in NMEA-2000 transducers
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12-19-16, 03:05 PM (This post was last modified: 12-21-16 10:06 AM by Chuck - Raymarine - Moderator.)
Post: #2
RE: Any plans to add wind data to A97 (Lighthouse)
Welcome to the Raymarine Forum Allen,

Q1. I currently have an A97 with downvision that is unfortunately an early non-wifi version which greatly limits its usefulness since I generally do my planning in the evening with my tablet and don't generally bother to transfer waypoints to the A97.
A1. Unless interfaced to an ax8 MFD, eSx8 MFD, or CP100 CHIRP/DownVision Fishfinder Sonar Module, an a97 MFD would not support DownVision fishfinder sonar imaging. When not interfaced to one of the aforementioned products, an a97 MFD would support 600W 50kHz / 200kHz fishfinder sonar imaging. Also contrary to this statement, the 9" and 12" a-Series MFDs were not offered without Wi-Fi communications circuitry. Accordingly, the Wi-Fi communications circuitry within these MFDs be configured ON and then these MFDs may be remotely viewed/controlled with an iPhone, iPad, Android smartphone, or Android tablet via Raymarine's Mobile apps. Additionally, Navionics offers the Navionics Boating app to permit operators to remotely plan waypoints and routes on their mobile devices and then wirelessly synchronize the planned data with a customer's Wi-Fi equipped a/c/e/eS/gS-Series MFDs.

Q2. I know right now, the A97 does not display any wind data which means if I want wind, I need to add another display which is sort of leading me towards jumping ship and switching over to a complete third party system.
A2. Again, not quite correct. An instrument display would only be required to calibrate wind instrument data. An instrument display would not be required to repeat wind data from a NMEA 2000 or NMEA 0183 wind source. As an example, I utilize an Airmar PB100 Weather Station onboard my own vessel equipped a & e-Series MFDs to provide the system with wind, as well as other environmental data.

Q3. Is there any plan to add useful wind data to the A series MFDs via a lighthouse update any time soon?
A3. Raymarine has previously logged this feature request. Unfortunately, Raymarine policy prohibits its employees from addressing future products, future product features, the features to be included in future product software updates, and the schedule for product and software releases with the public. That said, most major new product announcements are timed to coincide with the Miami Boat Show each year. In this case, you may want to consider waiting until this year's Miami Boat show to make any decisions regarding the addition of wind data to your system.

Q4. Is there a way to update a non-wifi A97 to Wifi?
A4. No. Raymarine only offered non-Wi-Fi versions of the a6x MFDs and a7x MFDs. All other models of a/c/e/eS-Series MFDs were exclusively manufactured with Wi-Fi communications circuitry. Accordingly, you may want to verify that the model of MFD owned is actually an a97 MFD. Should you own an a97 MFD and its Wi-Fi communications circuitry not be operational, then you may want to consider sending the MFD to Raymarine’s Product Repair Center to be bench checked / serviced.
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12-21-16, 09:25 AM
Post: #3
RE: Any plans to add wind data to A97 (Lighthouse)
This is when I figure out that I have too many toys.... I cannot keep exact track of everything...

You are completely correct. I have an A6? Something... Not a 97. It's still too cold around here for me to convince myself to go wrestle with tarps and ice to see exactly which one it is but you have answered my questions quite well never the less.

One last question, is it possible to get a non-WiFi unit upgraded to WiFi?

Thanks again for your prompt responses!

~Allan
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12-21-16, 10:05 AM (This post was last modified: 12-21-16 10:06 AM by Chuck - Raymarine - Moderator.)
Post: #4
RE: Any plans to add wind data to A97 (Lighthouse)
Allan,

Unfortunately, Raymarine a-Series MFDs which have been manufactured without Wi-Fi communications circuitry cannot be modified/upgraded to with Wi-Fi communications circuitry.
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