Icom has launched its IC-M506 VHF marine transceiver  - the first Icom model to feature NMEA2000 connectivity and AIS capabilities – at the London Boat Show. Because of its AIS display the transceiver is being pitched at the superyacht tender market, according to marketing manager, Ian Lockyer.

Equipping the IC-M506 with AIS functionality allows the tender to be set with a predetermined DSC target call function in case of emergency. A ‘last call’ voice recording function, which automatically saves the last two minutes of incoming calls, allows the pilot to recall missed transmissions. And the device features Icom’s Active Noise Cancelling technology.

The new intuitive Icom common user interface can display multiple features. A high-definition dot matrix display allows all information such as GPS, AIS, DSC and radio menus to be clearly viewed. The IC-M506EURO also features the most advanced waterproofing for a VHF on the market - IPX8 - designed and tested to survive after being submersed in 1m of water for 60 minutes. 

As with other Icom fixed units, there is the option of a second station Commandmic. Most functions including DSC and AIS functions can be controlled from the Commanmic. The radio also provides 25W ‘Two-Way Hailer’ capability.  When connected to an external hailer horn, the crewmember can communicate to the bridge or shore from the radio’s microphone with replies received via the hailer speaker.

With safety in mind Icom UK will now add a RYA kill cord sticker to all of its radio products. Commenting on the necessity of this initiative Lockyer said, “Accidents do happen on the water and in 2013 some of them proved to be fatal. It’s really important that we are all aware of the safety implications of not wearing a kill cord and that we always ensure that it is securely attached to the driver of the boat. These stickers will help to remind people.”


Icom is also celebrating the 50th anniversary of its inception in 2014. Founded in Japan by Tokuzo Inouye in 1954, Icom UK was established in 1964.

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