ACCESSORIES How I turn your smartphone into a sonar and fishfinder


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Did you know that all you need now is a phone to get even more accurate and customized bathymetric maps? Today we tell you about the possibility of generating your own seabed maps, so you never go to the rocks, by integrating nautical charts with bathymetric charts… made by yourself! We do this by presenting an innovative product that allows you to turn your smartphone (or tablet) into a sonar-plotter.

Turn your smartphone into a sonar plotter

“T-BOX SonarPhone” from American Vexilar is an echosounder contained in a 10x5x9cm watertight box to be installed on the bow of the boat. A second box, to be installed above the waterline, contains the control and transmission electronics. T-BOX exists in two versions, one for permanent installation (SP200), to be connected to the 12v system for power, and a removable one that can be installed with a suction cup and equipped with a rechargeable battery (SP300). The SonarPhone app can be downloaded for free from the Android or IOS market.

Integration with Navionics SonarChart Live and creation of backdrop chart

As well as many other plotters on the market, SonarPhone T-BOX integrates with Navionics SonarChart Live allowing you to generate your own high-definition seafloor map in real time, as well as view the cartography and sonar response on the same screen in “split screen” mode. The generated maps can be sent to Navionics, which can share them with the community in subsequent updates.

Bottom plotter up to 70 meters

The SonarPhone app turns your phone or tablet, into a real sonar plotter system. Through its own Wifi hotspot, the application monitors the sonar emission power and shows the result of the sounder response on the display. It does not need cellular network coverage to work. The maximum depth is 240 feet (about 70m), the sonar works in dual frequency at 200 and 83kHz with peak power of 400w per pulse. The wifi has a range of 80m.

What you see on the screen

Sonar mapping of the seabed in 2d with false colors, numerical depth of the vertical, water temperature are shown on the screen in real time. Parameters and units of measurement, are configurable, and menus are available in many languages, including Italian. An automatic fish identification system can be activated that interprets intermediate echo responses, displaying (optionally) minnow icons. There is a Demo function, which is useful to try the app, before purchasing the device.

Luigi Gallerani

Prices and info:

– 152.10 euro T-BOX SP200 fixed installation 12v,
– 204.31, T-BOX SP300 battery-operated mobile version, vat included.

The product is distributed in italy by E-Nav,

Vexilar Manufacturer Site:

Navionics Sonar-Chart Live site for SonarPhone

Other Navionics compatible products with SonarChart Live via WiFI:

Raymarine Dragonfly 4, 5 and 7 PRO, Wi-Fish..,
Lowrance HDS Carbon, HDS Gen3 and Elite Ti
Simrad GO and NSS evo3
B&G Vulcan and Zeus3


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