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Garmin GPSMAP 7608xsv

ProductDisplaySonarMax. Depth
Capability
GPSCartography
GPSMAP 7608xsv

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8"
Touchscreen,
WSVGA,
1024x600
2D CHIRP,
ClearVü,
SideVü,

Panoptix
capable
5,000 ft
(depending
on transducer)
10 Hz,
Internal
US LakeVü HD,
BlueChart g2,
Quickdraw
Contours

The GPSMAP 7608xsv is one of the advanced multifunctional displays from Garmin. It’s a fish finder and chartplotter combo that offers a very rich palette of features for both fish detection and navigation. As opposed to the GPSMAP 742xs that we’ve previously reviewed here, this unit offers a higher pixel resolution and has built-in SideVü sonar technology, not just ClearVü. For reference, this is the Garmin part number 010-01305-13.

Technical Details and Specifications

  • Display: 8″ diagonal WSVGA color touchscreen display, 1024H x 600V pixel resolution, with LED backlight
  • Sonar: CHIRP 2D, CHIRP ClearVü, CHIRP SideVü
  • Supported Frequencies:
    CHIRP 2D: 50/77/83/200 kHz
    ClearVü: 260/455/800 kHz
  • Max. Depth Capability: 5,000 ft (at 1 kW)
  • Transducer: Not included
  • Max. Power Draw: 12 VDC, 2.3 Amp
  • Typical Power Draw: 12 VDC, 1.8 Amp
  • Transmit Power: 1 kW
  • GPS: 10Hz, Internal
  • Charts: LakeVü HD and BlueChart g2
  • Routes, Waypoints, Tracks: 100; 5,000; 50,000 points (50 saved tracks).

Sonar features

Just like many other Garmin GPSMAP units, the 7608xsv does not include a transducer. It is compatible, though, with various ClearVü/SideVü transducers, such as the CV51M-TM or the CV52HW-TM. Since it has both Cv and Sv sonar technologies built-in, it doesn’t need an extra Black Box for these types of sonar. It’s compatible with Panoptix all-seeing transducers. And it’s also compatible with Garmin gWind, gWind Wireless, and gWind Race transducers via a GND 10 Black Box Bridge and NMEA 2000.

The unit itself is capable of various frequencies. For traditional sonar, it supports 50/77/83/200 kHz. It supports dual-frequency transducers such as 50/200 kHz, 77/200 kHz, and 83/200 kHz. If paired with a dual-frequency transducer of this sort, the unit is capable of showing the returns from both transducer beams simultaneously. Also, for Single Channel and Dual Channel CHIRP sonar, it supports a frequency range between 40-250 kHz.

For ClearVü and SideVü, the unit supports 260/455/800 kHz frequencies. So, it’s compatible with most 260/455 kHz, or 455/800 kHz transducers from Garmin and Airmar.

In terms of standard sonar features, the GPSMAP 7608xsv offers Sonar Recording and Sonar Rewind, Bottom Lock, A-Scope, UltraScroll, Fish Symbols, Fish Alarm, Depth Alarm, and more.

Navigation features

As we’ve mentioned above, this Garmin chart plotter offers an impressive palette of navigation features. To begin with, it is equipped with a 10 Hz internal GPS/GLONASS receiver which can provide position updates and heading 10 times per second. It has GPS speed calculation features and can store up to 5,000 waypoints in its memory. Needless to say, it also has a route creation function and can store up to 100 routes. It’s also a track plotter, so you can record and save up to 50 tracks (50,000 points per each track).

The unit has Multiple Depth Range Shading. It gives you the possibility to designate up to 10 different depth ranges each with its own color. This makes it easier to view target depths at a glance.

BlueChart g2 Charts

The unit has two built-in sets of maps. One is the U.S. coastal BlueChart g2, the other is the U.S. LakeVü HD. The charts comprised in the BlueChart g2 bundle cover the coastal U.S. waters, including East Coast, West Coast, Gulf of Mexico, U.S. and the Canadian side of the Great Lakes. These charts provide other information as well, such as tidal and current stations, IALA nav symbols, fishing spots, and more. The LakeVü HD charts cover the inland waters with more than 17,000 U.S. lakes, reservoirs, and rivers from which 13,000 are covered in HD detail featuring 1′ contours.

LakeVü HD Charts

As an addition to the built-in charts, the unit also has the Quickdraw Contours feature. This application uses the 2D sonar and GPS information to help you draw and save HD maps with up to 1′ contours. This way, you can use the most up to date depth contours of your lake. Also, you can upload your created charts to the Garmin Quickdraw Contours Community, or download Quickdraw Contours maps from there via the Wi-Fi connection.

Nonetheless, the unit is compatible with the premium Garmin charts such as the LakeVü HD Ultra, or BlueChart g2 Vision HD. These charts unlock various other features such as the Enhanced Auto Guidance. This feature allows you to search, create, and review the safest virtual paths between waypoints giving you the possibility to avoid low bridges, shallow waters etc.

This Garmin chartplotter has built-in SailAssist features. This is a pre-race guidance page that shows your virtual starting line along with data fields showing laylines, time to burn before the start and a race timer that can be synchronized across all your networked Garmin GPS products. In addition, other supported sailing features include an enhanced wind rose, heading and course-over-ground lines, set and drift, true and apparent wind data and more.

The unit also supports Radar and AIS units. It can be paired with powerful xHD2 open array radars or xHD dome radars. This way you can benefit from maximum awareness of everything that happens in your current area, on the water and above.

Control unit and networking features

Although the Garmin GPSMAP 7608xsv may sound like a 7-inch display unit, its display is actually 8-inch in diagonal. It’s a full-color WSVGA display with LED backlight. It also has a considerably richer pixel matrix than the 740xs units, which is 1024H x 600V. Needless to say, more pixels means higher quality imaging.

Like many other Garmin units, this one has the IPX7 waterproofing as well. This means it’s built to withstand incidental water exposure or rain, and even immersions in freshwater.

The unit is full touchscreen; it’s used in a similar way to a tablet. It has a highly customizable interface, which is also very intuitive and easy to use. You can add of the built-in apps to its start page for ease of access. You can also set up a 3-display view, in order to use three applications simultaneously.

An SD card reader (not microSD) is integrated into the unit. It can take up to two SD cards which you can use for chart upgrades, system updates, sonar data recording or various other data backup and transfer.

Wi-Fi connectivity is another feature available with the GPSMAP 7608xsv. Therefore, you can connect online and download charts, software updated, connect to the Quickdraw Contours Community via the ActiveCaptain app, and even benefit from smart notifications from your mobile device. It’s also Garmin Helm compatible, an app for Apple OS and Android that allows you to control your unit from your mobile device.

In terms of networking, the unit has two Ethernet ports and one NMEA 2000 port. Therefore, you can share features with other GPSMAP units, such as Radar, GSD 24 or GSD 26 sonar modules, charts, waypoints, etc. It’s compatible with FUSION-link audio system which you can connect and control from your chart plotter. It can show data from a SiriusXM weather receiver. It also offers Axis and FLIR camera support and can be used for various types of surveillance and situational awareness.

The unit is also GRID™ (Garmin Remote Input Device) compatible. A GRID remote control allows you to use your unit via its rotary knob and joystick in order to navigate through menus and use most of its functions from the distance.

Last but not least, the unit comes with two types of mounts: flush mount and bail mount. A protective cover is also included, along with the power/data cable, a T-connector and an NMEA 2000 drop cable.

The Pros

  • CHIRP technology offering superior clarity, target separation and target definition for the 2D Sonar, ClearVü, and SideVü
  • Supports Panoptix all-seeing sonar;
  • Supports gWind, gWind Wireless and gWind Race transducers;
  • Supports dual-frequency sonar;
  • Compatible with a wide selection of transducers from Garmin and Airmar, including 1 kW models;
  • Sonar recording and rewind;
  • Many standard sonar features, including Fish Symbols, A-Scope, Bottom Lock, Sonar Zoom, Fish Alarm, Depth Alarm, etc.
  • Fast and accurate 10 Hz internal GPS;
  • Preloaded with the U.S. LakeVü HD and BlueChart g2 coastal charts;
  • Quickdraw Contours function, for the possibility to add contours and customize your maps;
  • Multiple Depth Range Shading;
  • Compatible with the Garmin premium charts, such as BlueChart g2 Vision or LakeVü HD Ultra;
  • Tide tables information;
  • Data graphs and information from other NMEA 2000 sensors;
  • Supports AIS, RADAR and DSC-capable VHF radio;
  • Garmin Meteor™ Audio System compatible;
  • Supports FUSION-Link™ compatible radios;
  • Axis and FLIR camera support;
  • Touchscreen display;
  • High resolution for an 8″ unit – 1024 x 600;
  • Dual SD card reader;
  • Wireless connectivity (Wi-Fi networking and Bluetooth);
  • Garmin Helm compatible;
  • Wireless remote control compatible;
  • Bail and flush mounts included;
  • NMEA 2000 drop cable included;
  • Unit cover included;
  • Easy to install;
  • Straightforward, comprehensive operation.

The Cons

  • Not compatible with Navionics or C-MAP charts;
  • The GRID remote control is not included;
  • A transducer is not included.

Summary

The Garmin GPSMAP 7608xsv is an advanced multi-function display featuring a wide palette of navigation, sonar, and networking features. It has built-in 2D, ClearVü, and SideVü sonar powered by CHIRP technology. It includes the LakeVü HD and BlueChart g2 charts and has a 10 Hz integrated GPS/GLONASS receiver. It’s NMEA compatible and has Ethernet ports as well. It supports many other external devices such as Radar, AIS units, DSC VHF radio units, FLIR cameras, and more. It also has Wi-Fi connectivity for the ActiveCaptain app and is compatible with the Garmin Helm app. In all, it’s a highly versatile unit, offering an excellent value for the price.

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