Raymarine a98 Review

UPDATED Jul. 2020
Brand: Raymarine
Model: 98
Our Score: 7.7/10
Table Of Contents+
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The a series from Raymarine has been on the market for more than 3 years now, but the units are still being manufactured and sold, which speaks for their durability and overall quality. The series is well-known for providing users with a very intuitive UI powered by Raymarine’s LightHouse technology, CHIRP DownVision sonar capabilities, and high-precision GPS with different preloaded maps.

This Raymarine a98 review will cover the model with the part number T70247-NAG, which comes with a DownVision transducer as well as Navionics+ charts.

Raymarine a98 on white background

Pros & Cons

Pros
    • CHIRP 2D and DownVision
    • CPT-100 transducer
    • High-quality optically bonded LCD display
    • Navionics+ charts
    • Integrated 10Hz GPS
    • Ethernet and NMEA 0183/2000 ports
    • Wi-fi 
Cons
    • Incompatible with LightHouse 3 

Specifications

SpecificationsRaymarine a98
TypeDown Imaging
SonarCHIRP 2D and DownVision
TransducerCPT-100
Display (size, resolution, backlit, color)9" color display with 800 x 480 resolution and LED backlighting
DimensionsH x W x D - 7.46" x 9.84" x 3.25"
WeightNot Specified
BatteriesNot Specified
Depth Capability- 2D - 900ft - DovnVision - 600ft
Frequency- 2D - 170-230 kHz - DownVision - 320-380 kHz
Power OutputNot Specified
Power Input12 or 24V
GPSInternal 10kHz with GLONASS, WAAS, EGNOS, and MSAS
MapsNavionics+ for North America
Routes, Waypoints, Tracks3,000 waypoints, 150 routes, 15 tracks with 10,000 points per track
WaterproofIP-X6 and IP-X7
Wi-Fi ConnectivityYes
MicroSD card slotYes

Display/Screen

Raymarine a98 comes with a 9” display with a pixel matrix of 800 x 480 and a 16:9 aspect ratio. The screen features LED backlighting, which means you should not have any problems observing your readings in direct sunlight or at night. As we already mentioned, the user interface features a very convenient design and the LightHouse tech places the most frequently used icons in locations that are easier to reach. Needless to say, Raymarine a98 is a touchscreen unit with a physical power button, which means it is used as a tablet, unlike the newer eS98 model that also features a physical keypad. 

Raymarine a98 side view

Raymarine a98’s waterproof rating is IP-X6 and IP-X7, which makes it completely resistant to heavy rain and accidental water splasher. However, the unit should not be submerged in water deeper than 3.3ft for longer than 30 minutes. The device has not been tested against outside solids like dirt or dust.  

Sonar & Transducer

This particular model comes with the CPT-100 transducer that supports both DownVision and 2D sonars. With the transducer, you get a urethane transom mount and 33ft of cable. The transducer features a temperature sensor as well. However, note that this particular model has been discontinued, which means you will have to replace it with the CPT-100 DVS in case the original breaks for whatever reason. If you want a more advanced upgrade, however, you can also go with thru-hull models like CPT-110 or CPT-S.  

The main unit covers 170-230 kHz CHIRP for 2D sonar and 320-380 kHz for DownVision. For 2D scanning, the beam coverage is 25° and the maximum depth is 900ft. For DV, the coverage is 60° (1.4° fore/aft) with a maximum depth of 600ft. 

Navigation

Raymarine a98 is equipped with a variety of navigation features, including a built-in 10Hz GPS module with GLONASS, WAAS/EGNOS/MSAS. The company also offers a multitude of optional external GPS antennas.  

The device can store up to 3,000 waypoints, 150 routes, and 15 tracks with 10,000 points per track. As we already mentioned in this Raymarine a98 review, the unit comes with preloaded Navionics+ charts for North America, which is one of the best options currently on the market. The unit is also compatible with C-Map by Jeppesen and Raymarine LightHouse Charts. Raymarine a98 supports radar and AIS units too.

Networking

When it comes to networking, Raymarine a98 comes with the NMEA 2000 port (adapter included) as well as Raynet Ethernet and SeaTalk. It also features NMEA 0183 in and out and IP and analog Video ins. Unlike the two a models with smaller screens, a98 is also capable of thermal night vision. Finally, you also have Wi-Fi and Bluetooth features at your disposal. If you prefer remote control for your fish finder, Raymarine a98 is compatible with models like RCU-3, RMK-10, and others.

What's In The Box

    • Front bezels
    • MFD
    • Sun Cover
    • Mounting gasket
    • Trunnion bracket kit
    • Documentation pack
    • SeaTalk to DeviceNet adaptor kit
    • 4 x spring washers, washers, nuts, and bolts
    • 3,3ft SeaTalk spur cable
    • 6.6ft RayNet cable
    • Power cable
    • Power and data cable

Verdict

Raymarine a98 is a highly versatile unit that offers great value for your money. It is compatible with a wide variety of fishing vessels, excluding small kayaks and canoes. It has an impressive display powered by the LightHouse technology for the optimal user experience.

The unit comes with both 2D and DownVision sonars and features the CPT-100 transducer as well. However, it really gets to shine with its networking options. Raymarine a98 literally features every connectivity technology you could possibly think of.

Due to its depth limitations, the unit is not suitable for off-shore fishing trips, but it provides unparalleled utility during all inland or coastal expeditions.

Our score: 7.7/10