Proprietary networks
Not supported other than among the devices of a single being a flexible concept

Several "proprietary" networks appear to use a reasonably standard version of Ethernet at the physical level, but they send proprietary messages among their devices connected to it. Certain of the variants simply seem to involve using more watertight plugs than the standard. That can mean that multiple vendors' products can coexist  on the same physical network, which does simplify installation and maintenance. On that network, however, a Brand X device may be able to communicate with other Brand X devices, while Brand Y devices can only talk to other Brand Y devices.

Some radar systems and other graphics-intensive systems may use a standard video interface such as the television NTSC or PAL standards, or one of the computer monitor VGA family. If the radar processor expects to interact with the display to create images, rather than send the display a predefined image, it is unlikely there will be any interoperability between vendors.

Any specific interoperation request is apt to need testing to see if it is feasible, which it may be, either directly or with simple conversion devices.  Beachwerks cannot guarantee that it can make Brand X talk to Brand Y, but we have the skills to see if full, or partial solutions, make sense. Common cabling systems are examples of useful partial solutions.

Northstar N2

Appears to be 100BaseTX and compatible with industry switches. It distributes video signals with either television formats such as NTSC or PAL, or computer formats ogf the VGA family.

Furuno NavNet

Furuno's NavNet, described as proprietary, appears to be Ethernet at the physical and data link levels, which can let it be used within a common cabling system. Furuno is offering upgrade paths to the latest NavNet 3 technology.  NavNet 3 includes NMEA 2000 technology, but Furuno may be positioning its multifunction displays (MFD) as the center to which existing components connect, rather than being something that can talk to non-Furuno devices.

Their strategy seems flexible, however, with such products as the FAX30 device, which connects to a PC with Ethernet  and makes it a Navtex  and Weatherfax receiver. The FAX30 does not seem to need software beyond a familiar web browser. Furuno 8 and 12-inch NavNet displays, which are intelligent, can receive graphic information via Ethernet.


Raymarine uses several different networking technologies. Some are variants on industry standards, while others are unique.


SeaTalk is the oldest, and is a daisy-chained, electrically unbalanced signal. This appears to have no compatibility with any industry standard, and, indeed, SeaTalk instruments of different vintages use different plugs.

SeaTalk 2

In contrast to SeaTalk,  SeaTalk 2 is based on the NMEA standard, but uses a different connector and is not completely compatible at the level of messages exchanged. SeaTalk 2 can be interfaced to, or made compatible with, SeaTalk, NMEA 0183, NMEA 2000 and USB 2.0.

SeaTalk HS

Again, Raymarine defines a network as a variant of a standard protocol, Ethernet, at the physical level. SeaTalk HS connectors do have an advantage over standard Ethernet cables, in that the plug has additional sealing for water resistance.  The "HS" is for "high speed", making it fast enough to transmit rapidly changing graphic information such as radar displays.  Sea Talk and Sea Talk 2 do not support such graphics.

HSB and HSB2

HSB is Raymarine's technology for interconnecting high-performance graphic displays such as radar screens and chartplotters. Not all Raymarine devices can be interconnected. If two devices are "Plus" products, they use HSB2 and will interoperate. If neither one is Plus, they will interoperate as HSB.  Plus and non-Plus units, however, do not appear to be interoperable with Raymarine technology. Raymarine does have an an interface to bring HSB2 displays into a PC. If the PC runs a compatible chartplotter, which emulates the Raymarine E-series, you get a radar overlay on a PC, which can be running more open applications.  

Raymarine has not given any public description of the interface between the radar antenna and display. This interface is closed and proprietary for most vendors.
SeaTalk NG

SeaTalk NG (Next Generation) is NMEA 2000 compatible system, although it is not itself NMEA 2000 certified. Raymarine offers adapters for NMEA-2000 conformant networks, as well as SeaTalk and SeaTalk 2.  NG networks, like NMEA 2000 but not Ethernet, is architected around a backbone cable with drops to specific devices. While low-current devices will be able to be powered from SeaTalk NG, it is unclear if multi-ampere feeds will be available.


The SmartCraft networking technology from Brunswitch Corporation is similar to NMEA 2000, and indeed draws from the automotive Controller Area Networks (CAN) that inspire NMEA 2000. Since Brunswick is heavily involved in engine technology, the CAN emphasis is not surprising, as well as the prioritization, within the network, of engine information. SmartCraft networking, however, is not an open standard, although Brunswick does have a cooperative program to allow other manufacturers, presumably under license, to connect to the SmartCratft network.