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Marine Electronics Journal Blog
Panoptix LiveScope takes 2018 NMEA Technology Award

By Jim Fullilove

Marine Electronics Journal Editor

For the past few years I’ve had the great opportunity to be part of the judging panel that selects the marine electronics industry’s top product. NMEA manufacturer members nominate the one product that meets some pretty strict rules about dates of distribution and technical certification. The judges take it from there, meeting with product managers to get with the equipment hands on and discuss each product's functions and operability. This occurred on the trade show floor at the annual NMEA Marine Electronics Conference & Expo, held last month in southern Florida.

The Technology Award is one of two equipment awards that NMEA presents every year. The other is the Product of Excellence Awards. Winners in that competition are selected by NMEA members in a voting procedure. Click HERE to see who won.

This year the independent judging panel for the Technology Award consisted of two Certified Marine Electronics Installers (CMETs), Dave Luce of Atlantic Marine Electronics in Riviera Beach, FL, and Dave Laska of L&L Electronics in Branford, CT, along with Sport Fishing executive editor Chris Woodward and me.

Scoring the contenders

What we looked for was the one product that rated highest in innovation, benefit to boaters, practicality and value. We examined 15 products over the course of two days and then scored them each category—no easy task. At the end of the exercise Garmin’s Panoptix LiveScope came out on top.

 “LiveScope is the first and only live, real-time recreational scanning sonar,” the judges said. “The transducer has two modes—straight down and forward looking. LiveScope is an innovative system that combines scanning sonar and live sonar to give fishermen easy-to-interpret real-time images of bottom structure, bait and fish to 200 feet below or around the boat even when the boat is stationary. When the boat is moving it continuously adjusts the sonar beams to compensate for motion.”

Currently LiveScope can be set up for transom mount or trolling motors. A thru-hull transducer for larger boats will be available later this year. LiveScope lists for $1500. Check out these VIDEOS.


Here’s how Garmin’s nomination entry described certain aspects of the product:

LiveScope can easily be adjusted to fit the angler’s fishing techniques. Simply point the LiveScope transducer down to see directly below the boat, or forward to see around the boat. Either view provides incredibly sharp, real-time scanning sonar images up to 200 feet down or away from the boat, and the view automatically changes on your compatible Garmin chartplotter screen.

LiveScope is also equipped with an attitude heading reference system (AHRS) that constantly adjusts sonar beams to compensate for boat motion, so even in rough conditions, anglers will still see a steady sonar image. The Panoptix LiveScope scanning sonar system includes a compact GLS 10 sonar black box with an LVS32 transducer and a simple plug-and-play Garmin Marine Network connector for easy installation and integration with a compatible Garmin chartplotter. A trolling motor barrel and shaft mounting kit and a transom mounting kit are also included.

Panoptix LiveScope is compatible with Garmin’s GPSMAP 8400/8600 multifunction displays, GPSMAP 7400/7600, GPSMAP 10X2/12X2, GPSMAP 10X2/12X2xsv Touch and GPSMAP 7X2/9X2 series chartplotters, and the ECHOMAP Plus 7Xcv/7Xsv/9Xsv chartplotter/sonar combo series.


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