IPX7 v IPX8 ratings, Garmin 76SC

-- Last Updated: May-21-16 11:47 AM EST --

Oops, Jack is right it is a 78SC

Went to West Marine today to get some gel coat repair stuff and wandered over to the electronics. I have functional units for both VHF and marine GPS but for various reasons each could use an upgrade.
Unfortunately for my bank account they have a pretty good sale going on two PFD-friendly VHF's and a marine VHF that comes with charts loaded.

Re VHF's -
I am looking around for one that would ride more easily on my vest than old-reliable that goes paddling in the day hatch because it is heavy and big. One of the lightweight ones I saw today had an IPX8 rating and the one with a stubbier antenna had an IPX7 rating. Both are floatable.

I know what the IPX ratings mean. Does anyone have an experience that would point me at the 7 or the 8 level? Note that old reliable is in the day hatch, and squacking away at me when one of the local lobstermen needs to put out a call for more bait.

Garmin 76SC is on a steep price reduction this week. It'd be used inside/thru a clear dry bag because even if it is waterproof it still is not going to float. The guy said that their screen rated very well for being readable in daylight. Anyone have experience to agree or disagree?

Thanks all


– Last Updated: May-19-16 6:34 PM EST –

traded for an 80. Miss the tide chart page. Hangum...

The 76 was always used in a dry bag that was always humid. All 76 seams were taped with 33M after wiping down with isopropyl. Contacts were cleaned with CRC.

Had a lotta hours on the 76, Gar reports only contacts were greenly corroded but not much.

The big upgrade overtaking the tide chart loss is the new compass is less sensitive to not held level and true to the earth's surface.

This is good. I have circled a number of times trying to find WhTH* the 76 GPS thinks it is from an out of level compass. Its a TDS problem ....ETA ...

76 ! yes good unit.

I was lost hiking a coupla times for a few minutes. A GPS is light in a daypack.

I have Blue Charts. I use the chart to paddle on the depth borders. Current there is often faster and often going upstream in a back eddy.

In a bay, I live near Big Carlos inside Sanibel Island on the Caloosahatchee, the bottom view will give a different view and a different paddling experience than otherwise easily accessible. In that a bay is not flat but filled with mounds and flows, chops and streams not seen from afar but there on the map.

Read: Burch on Kayak navigation, essential. try the Arab approach.


– Last Updated: May-21-16 10:57 PM EST –

I don't offhand know the difference between the model you're considering and ours, but we've been pleased with the Cx.

Ours is waterproof AND floats, and I've used it strapped to the foredeck for it seems forever. I'll follow JackL's lead and create a small minicell holder for it -it's more easily read on an incline -one of these days, and get a new card with updated info one of these days as well.

I've been told the 76 series is one of the better ones, superior in many areas to subsequent models, and, as noted, we're happy with it as we


-Frank in Miamj

The IPX8 is better rated for waterproofness, but I have not (yet) had any trouble with waterproof VHFs not being waterproof. Been through 5 or 6 units over the years. So I would go for either the 7 or 8, if other features or price was what I wanted. I have had issues of charging tabs on VHF batteries corroding, and that is not a waterproofing issue. Also have had issues of VHF just dying, so am considering buying next from West Marine and paying for the extended warranty.

I have had issues with waterproof GPSes, so would look for better ratings on those.

IPX7 vs. IPX 8
IPX8 is not a standard. It is a rating used by manufacturers and is variable by how the manufacturer chooses to test and describe the water resistance. It may or may not be more waterproof than IPX7. Devices that carry an IPX7 rating are comparable, IPX8 designations are not to my knowledge.