June 2009 Electronics

June 2009 Electronics

The Next Wave: WaveCall by Marlink (call for coverage and pricing) is a next-generation system that draws on increased satellite capacity in the Americas, Europe, and the Caribbean to provide more efficient and affordable voice and data communications at sea. Using the Sea Tel Ku-band VSAT 4006 antenna, WaveCall provides versatile solutions for telephone and broadband service by linking a yacht's voice and data network via satellite to the Internet and public-switched telephone networks. The vessel's network is linked to an Ethernet port on WaveCall's on board equipment and, according to Marlink, performance is similar to that of terrestrial voice and data systems. Marlink, (713) 910-3352, (301) 838-7700; www.marlink.com

June 2009 Electronics

Small World: Flex your flatscreen like the big boys. The KVH TracVision M1 ($2,995) is a compact, turnkey solution to connect your marine television to DirecTV. Get 300-plus channels of digital programming at the dock or underway from anywhere in the coastal waters of the continental U.S. This easy-to-install kit includes the antenna, a 12v mobile DirecTV receiver, and an RF remote control. The 12.5-inchdiameter dome antenna weighs just 7.5 pounds, can mount nearly anywhere, and uses the company's Whisper Drive motors for quiet operation. KVH, (401) 847-3327; www.kvh.com

June 2009 Electronics

Quick Switch: The Multi-satellite Interface Module ($265) from Intellian Technologies brings push-button convenience aboard for DISH Network customers who use the company's i-series Ku-band satellite systems. Replacing the DISH Pro or Pro+ multi-switch, the MIM speeds switching between DISH Network's three different satellites, increasing reliability and eliminating error codes that interrupt your viewing pleasure. The MIM features an RS-232 port to make channel-switching faster, and can connect four receivers, expandable as needed with additional MIM units. Intellian Technologies, (949) 916-4411; www.intelliantech.com

June 2009 Electronics

Fleet Means Fast Inmarsat's FleetBroadband 150 offers access to the Big Four of modern personal communications: voice, Internet access, e-mail, and SMS texting-all at the downright-usable speed of 150 kbps. All of this comes in the FB150's compact package, including a small dome-about 8 inches in diameter-and an unobtrusive black-box unit that will fit on yachts of most any size. The system provided loud and clear voice service when I used it, and the Internet access was very quick-real-time stock ticker updates were seamless. Online video seemed to need a little buffering during the demonstration, but I sometimes have the same problem on my broadband-enabled home computer. This type of access could make it easier to stay away on the yacht for longer periods, while not falling behind at the office. Hardware for FB150 systems is made by Thrane & Thrane and Addvalue, and pricing for hardware and service varies by subscription. Inmarsat; www.inmarsat.com -Jason Y. Wood