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Connecting two a-series MFDs
12-05-16, 03:47 PM
Post: #1
Connecting two a-series MFDs
My first post here, looking for assistance networking a couple MFDs.

I have an a78 with transducer and power attached, currently running on my dash. I'd like to add an a67 display to my instrument panel. The newer a67 unit has WiFi, the existing a78 does not. However, the a78 transducer provides the CHIRP function whereas the newer a67 does not.

While underway, I would like to use one display for nav, and the other for fishfinding, at any given time. Also, I'd like to control the two displays through a mobile device - either a tablet or a mobile phone.

Is all of this possible? And, if so, what is the best way to connect these MFDs and transducer? Do I need to get a network kit and run the transducer, power, and each display separately into the 5 port hub? Or can I simply add a network cable from the existing a78 with power and transducer already attached to the new display?

Many thanks for any assistance you can provide.
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12-05-16, 05:06 PM
Post: #2
RE: Connecting two a-series MFDs
Welcome to the Raymarine Forum oldgradyman,

Q1. While underway, I would like to use one display for nav, and the other for fishfinding, at any given time.
A1. This is indeed possible the two MFDs would need to be interfaced to on another via an appropriate length of RayNet (F) to RayNet (F) Cable. In systems featuring additional compatible devices having Ethernet communications interfaces another method of networking these MFDs would be to interface each MFD to a HS5 RayNet Network Switch via an appropriate length of RayNet (F) to RayNet (F) Cable.

Q2. Also, I'd like to control the two displays through a mobile device - either a tablet or a mobile phone.
A2. Only the Wi-Fi equipped MFDs can be remotely controlled via a mobile device ... in this case, the a78 MFD would not be able to be remotely controlled.

See the response to Q1 regarding how the MFDs may be interfaced to one another. Fishfinder transducers may only be interface to the Transducer socket of a compatible MFD or to the Transducer socket of a compatible fishfinder sounder module. The MFDs will need to be powered via the Power Cables packaged with the MFDs.

Q3. Can I simply add a network cable from the existing a78 with power and transducer already attached to the new display?
A3. This is indeed possible and as indicated within my response to Q1.
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12-05-16, 05:39 PM
Post: #3
RE: Connecting two a-series MFDs
Chuck,

Many thanks for the prompt and thorough response. I appreciate it.

So just to recap, I need to connect each MFD to its own power source, and connect the two displays together using the RayNet cable.

Perhaps it will be obvious when I get it, but does this cable connect to the "Network" socket or the "STng" socket?

Also, since the a78 came with the more functional transducer, I assume that I can connect that to either MFD and get the sonar, etc. data on either display - is that correct? Or is the transducer data only available on the MFD that it is connected to?

As for nav, each unit came with Navionics gold. Do I only have to update one chart chip for display on either device? It isn't clear to me how I should manage the charts, updates, and the ability to use the more detailed personal contours.

Thanks again!
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12-12-16, 10:02 AM
Post: #4
RE: Connecting two a-series MFDs
oldgradyman,

Q1. does this cable connect to the "Network" socket or the "STng" socket?
A1. The RayNet (F) to RayNet (F) Cable will be used to interface the NETWORK socket the MFDs to one another.

Q2. Since the a78 came with the more functional transducer, I assume that I can connect that to either MFD and get the sonar, etc. data on either display - is that correct? Or is the transducer data only available on the MFD that it is connected to?
A2. Transducers designed to be mated to the TRANSDUCER socket of an ax8 MFD, eSx8 MFD, or CP100 can only be mated to an ax8 MFD, eSx8 MFD, or CP100. When interfaced to a compatible transducer an ax8 MFD or eSx8 MFD will share its CHIRP/DownVision fishfinder features with other networked MFDs.

Q3. As for nav, each unit came with Navionics gold. Do I only have to update one chart chip for display on either device? It isn't clear to me how I should manage the charts, updates, and the ability to use the more detailed personal contours.
A3. Raymarine does not bundle its MFDs with Navionics Gold chart cards. Raymarine bundles its MFDs with LightHouse, Navionics+, or C-Map 4D Essentials chart cards. Should the Navionics chart cards be populated with cartography for the same geographic area, then only one of the Navionics chart cards need be present within either of the microSD card readers of the MFDs ... the MFD's will share cartography. Navionics+ chart cards are not populated with Sonar charts. Should you desire to additionally populate a bundled Navionics+ chart card with Sonar Charts, it will be necessary to do so via the Navionics web site. It may be necessary to erase the contents of the chart card (IMPORTANT NOTE: contact Navionics (508-291-6000) for instructions regarding how erase the contents of a Navionics+ chart card) prior to updating the Navionics+ chart card with Freshest Data Nautical Charts and Sonar Charts.
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12-13-16, 10:21 AM
Post: #5
RE: Connecting two a-series MFDs
Thanks again Chuck.

I think I have a much better understanding now.

Perhaps I used the wrong chart terminology earlier. I have an older a78 that does not have WiFi. So I bought a newer a67 with WiFi to network with the other unit, and to install in the dash panel.

I bought the newer a67 unit from a popular outdoor outfitter, and it came with two chart chips: Navionics Raymarine US Lakes (which I don't need) and Navionics Raymarine US & Canada Gold. So that is why I asked about the gold package.

It seems that I can use the charting chips in either unit and have them available to the other. So I suppose I would go with the newer one that came with the a67.

Also, since the a78 has the CHIRP circuits, I would attach the transducer to that one.

Does this seem like a good way to proceed?

Many thanks
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12-13-16, 11:08 AM
Post: #6
RE: Connecting two a-series MFDs
oldgradyman,

Q1: It seems that I can use the charting chips in either unit and have them available to the other. So I suppose I would go with the newer one that came with the a67.
A1: Agreed

Q2: Also, since the a78 has the CHIRP circuits, I would attach the transducer to that one.
A2: The CHIRP/DownVision should indeed be interfaced to the a78 MFD's TRANSDUCER socket.
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