A Comprehensive Standard Horizon GX1700 Review

Boating season is in full swing, and not a moment too soon. As much as you may be enjoying the summer, now is also the time to take a close look at your equipment and determine if it's time for an upgrade or a replacement.

As any boater knows, you don't skimp on safety, and your GPS and VHF radio shouldn't be an exception. But how do you know which model is best for your needs?

There are plenty of models out there, but one of our favorites is the Standard Horizon GX1700. To help you decide if this is the right option for you, check out our comprehensive review.

A Review of the Standard Horizon GX1700

Standard Horizon is one of the major players in the VHF radio market, and the GX1700 is a great middle-of-the-road option. Here are some of our favorite features this model offers:

WAAS GPS

When it comes to GPS, accuracy can be a matter of life and death. That's why this is the #1 feature on our list. The GX1700 uses Wide Area Augmentation System (WAAS) GPS, a highly accurate way to pinpoint your location with a network of satellites and ground stations.

GPS Works in Any Position

A problem we've seen with many other GPS models is that they have difficulty getting an accurate location while they're mounted. This is because the often put the GPS antenna in the back of the device, where the mount interferes.

The Standard Horizon GX1700, on the other hand, has an antenna inside the display screen. That means it's always facing outward and able to get an accurate location whether it's mounted or in your hand.

Meets ITU-R M493-13 Class D DSC

If you're a boater, you're hopefully familiar with the ITU-R M493-13 Class D requirements for communication devices on your boat. This device meets these important requirements so you can rest assured that you're above-board.

Navigation to a DSC Distress Call

Another important safety feature of the GX1700 is its ability to automatically detect the closest vessel and send a DSC distress call. Streamlining this process can make all the difference in a life-threatening situation.

Automatically Detects 4 Ships

Keeping along the lines of the automatic GPS features, this model can also automatically poll the GPS position of up to four ships at one. If you need to get in touch with another vessel, you never know whether they'll be responsive. Locating and contacting four vessels can help you make contact when you need it.

Water Protection

Any marine VHF needs to have some degree of water protection, but the Standard Horizon GX1700 goes above and beyond. It's ranked as JIS-8, or "submersible" (the highest ranking on the Japanese Industrial Standards for water resistance).

This model can be submerged for as long as 30 minutes at nearly 5 feet before its function is compromised.

If you're still not sure whether your GX1700 will hold up to your adventures at sea, Standard Horizon offers a three-year waterproof warranty on the product. They know they've built their product to last, so you can rest assured that you won't be replacing yours every summer.

Noise Canceling Microphone

Everyone has experienced the frustration of background noise. When it comes to a marine VHF, your ability to communicate with another vessel is crucial to your safety (or theirs).

Rather than letting background noise get in the way of your communication, Standard Horizon has built noise cancellation into the GX1700's microphone. This lets your voice come through clearly without interference from background noise.

NOAA Weather Alerts

We don't need to tell you how vital it is that you can monitor the weather while you're at sea. The last thing you want to do is struggle to find the NOAA weather channel as you watch a massive storm head your way.

The Standard Horizon GX1700 has the NOAA weather channel pre-selected to help you quickly find the information you need. It will also give you automatic alerts when there are important changes in the weather in your area.

Channel Customization

As an added convenience measure, this advanced model lets you store as many as ten of your favorite channels. You can scan between them as well for a quick check.

In addition, the display also lets you give your channels custom nicknames. The names are displayed on the conveniently large display screen, so you can quickly jump to the channel you want without remembering the channel number.

Meets NMEA 0183

You may already be familiar with NMEA 0183. This standard from the National Marine Electronics Association sets regulations for your equipment's transmissions to other vessels.

The Standard Horizon GX100 uses NMEA 0183 to be able to send your GPS coordinates to other vessels like the Coast Guard. Because the device uses this standard, it also lets you receive other vessels' coordinates more easily.

The Price

With all the features above, every boater finds themselves wondering if this is a device they can afford. The GX1700 costs right around $200, making it a mid-range piece of equipment. There are also accessories you can add to your device, but we don't find that they're necessary to improve its function or make it easier to use.

The Design

Not all boaters are concerned about how their VHF looks with their boat's interior, but some are, so it's worth mentioning. This model comes in either black or white, so you can customize it for your style. At just 9 inches wide, it's also compact enough to work with even small boats.

The Verdict on the Standard Horizon GX1700

When it comes down to it, the GX1700 is a product that is packed with advanced features. It might not be the cheapest model on the market, but your safety shouldn't be compromised for the sake of saving a few dollars.

All in all, the Standard Horizon GX1700 is a product we would recommend to nearly any boater.

If you want to continue shopping for your options, check out our selection of VHF products.

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