Garmin GNS 750 vs Avidyne IFD 540

Discussion in 'Avionics and Upgrades' started by Glenn C, Dec 19, 2018.

  1. Glenn C

    Glenn C Pre-Flight

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    Any opinions here? I like the avidyne but my shop, which is a dealer for both, warns me against it. They say that they have yet to install one, which may be a function of the ability to buy direct and do an easy install, and concerns about the company's sustainability in the future.

    I have a 430w so any upgrade is going to involve some construction so that's a wash. I like the "fms like" features of the avidyne, the keyboard, and the option to not use the touchscreen. Auto fill of nearby fixed and display of the comm facility are pretty slick too.

    I think that the resale market might favor the Garmin, and I too wonder about Avidyne staying in business over the long term.
     
  2. hindsight2020

    hindsight2020 En-Route

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    True for most vendors I suppose, but Garmin has a pretty good track record of planned obsolescence and treating their customer base like a verbally abused low self-esteem girlfriend LOL. Hell, look at what Avidyne did with the 430W wiring and tray mounting. That's what Garmin should have done... but oh no, Mássa would rather get caught dead than ever bargain with his captive audience like that, apparently. :rolleyes:

    Avidyne hardware had a bad rep back in the days of the legacy MFDs in the Cirrus, can't speak to their stuff these days. Seems like a mixed bag. I like their business style (piggybacking off the legacy 430 installations), and if my G430W were to explode one day, no question I would stick a 440 in there because eff Garmin that's why :D
     
  3. Jesse Saint

    Jesse Saint Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Are there any opinions?!!! That’s almost funny. Everybody has an opinion. The GTN is an awesome product. The Avidyne us an awesome product. If you already have a 430W, the IFD (even a 540 or 550) would require no repinning. Even moving to the bigger unit, you can unscrew the connectors from the back of the 430W rack and screw them into the back of the 540/50 rack. If the stack has room, it’s a very fast and easy process. A 440 wouldn’t require ANY construction. Slide the 430W out and the 440 in. 15 minutes to input settings and fill out a 337 and you’re done.
     
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  4. Jesse Saint

    Jesse Saint Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Many avionics shops who are dealers for both get better incentives to sell Garmin than Avidyne. They get to repin your panel, at least in part, which equals billable hours. How much can they charge for an hour of total work to swap a 430W for a 440?
     
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  5. Jim_R

    Jim_R Cleared for Takeoff

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    Well, if they keep steering everyone away from Avidyne, they're never going to install one. If they've never installed one, then what, exactly, are they basing their comparisons on?

    I don't know why a shop may prefer to install Garmins vs Avidynes. But I do know that if you insist on forcing a dealer who doesn't want to sell you a product to sell you that product, then it's likely to be a miserable experience.

    If you choose the Avidyne, find a dealer who's happy to do the install.

    (I've got an IFD540, and I love it.)
     
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  6. Jesse Saint

    Jesse Saint Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Me too. I love my IFD540. I agree almost completely with your whole post.
     
  7. GBSoren

    GBSoren Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I did the 430w to IFD440 swap, that's the quickest, least expensive way to go. And with the IFD100 app, which Garmin doesn't have anything like, you have a "big screen" IFD also. Also, no need to buy the added expense of Flightstream. Both wifi and bluetooth built in to every IFD box. I don't regret my upgrade to the IFD at all. Also, from what I've been told, plan on a lot more for install time and money with the Garmin.

    Saying all that you really have to look at what your future upgrade plans are too. Garmin connects well to Garmin. But Garmin doesn't always play well with other brands. So if you're planning to add a MFD, ADS-B, or anything else to your panel, think about what brand you'll be going with. Avidyne may not connect easily or at all to other Garmin avionics.
     
  8. Chip Sylverne

    Chip Sylverne En-Route PoA Supporter

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    Fear is the poison of our lives.
    I have yet to get a straight answer on whether the Avidyne plays nice with the G5. One shop says yes, the other no, and the Garmin G5 stc paperwork is silent.

    I'm looking at a decision soon as well. I like the Avidyne, but Garmin seems to get you by the short and curlies.
     
  9. GBSoren

    GBSoren Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I have a single G5, the Avidyne works fine with it. I also have a Garmin GTX345, again, it connects and works fine, I did have to add a line from the GTX345 to the IFD440 to get ADS-b weather in to the 440.

    I can't speak to connecting dual G5's to the IFD's, but a single works. I don't think there is official support of G500txi or the or the GFC500 autopilot...yet.
     
  10. Jesse Saint

    Jesse Saint Pre-takeoff checklist

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    The Avidyne outputs and inputs the same formats as the 430/530. The outside boxes don’t know if they’re talking to or hearing from an Avidyne or a 430/530. There is no CAN Bus on the Garmin navigators. There is a high speed data bus that the GTN’s have, but the 430/530 don’t, so the other Garmin boxes communicate with them in an RS22 or ARINC format, same as the Avidyne. The Avidynecwill also talk to other 3rd party boxes that the Garmin won’t. I have a Cherokee that I fly that has had a Navworx ADS600-B for years. The 430 could get traffic via ARINC. The 650 didn’t accept anything that we could get to work. The IFD540 gets weather and traffic from the Navworx. That alone makes the difference in the Cherokee. Until you’ve spent some time behind an Avidyne, you can’t appreciate the features.
    As for company longevity, Avidyne is selling a TON of their IFD’s. Any forum you go to you will find people who have installed IFD’s and love them.
     
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  11. Bryan Kahl

    Bryan Kahl Filing Flight Plan

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    Sorry for the delay here Chip. While the G5 is not currently in our installation manual, we have seen many pilots install the IFD and G5 with no issues. With that said, we will be adding the G5 to our installation manual with our upcoming software update in Q1 of 2019. Hope this helps.

    Best regards,

    Bryan Kahl

    Director of Customer Experience

    Bkahl@avidyne.com
     
  12. Chip Sylverne

    Chip Sylverne En-Route PoA Supporter

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    Fear is the poison of our lives.
    As an HSI?
     
  13. Chip Sylverne

    Chip Sylverne En-Route PoA Supporter

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    Thanks, Bryan. Have you heard of any successful installations using the Avidyne/G5 /GAD 29 successfully as an HSI?
     
  14. GBSoren

    GBSoren Pre-takeoff checklist

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    No, mine is an AI.
     
  15. Jesse Saint

    Jesse Saint Pre-takeoff checklist

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    The dual G5's work just fine with an IFD.

    [​IMG]
     
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  16. arkvet

    arkvet Line Up and Wait

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    I have an IFD 550 and dual G5's The HSI / GPSS function beautifully! With the AHRS on the IFD 550 and the slaved Ipad Pro 9.7" displaying my moving map it is one sweet and redundant setup. The Ipad isn't necessary but it sure is nice to just be able to dedicate that one screen to moving map / weather. That frees up the entire 550 for FMS (flight plan) work anytime I need it. The functionality of the IFD is so dang user friendly that It pretty much negates and need for Foreflight integration. I use a yoke mounted Ipad mini for approach plates only. Other than that the IFD does everything.
     
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  17. arkvet

    arkvet Line Up and Wait

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    Oh and my shop kinda snarled their nose up to the Avidyne IFD when I told them that's what I wanted. I pushed and they obliged. Well they honestly didn't have to do much. Slide the 530 out and slide the 550 in. Maybe that was their beef? I've since provided the shop with multiple updates and a rave review on the IFD... not sure if that message is being relayed to future customers though? Would be kinda cool to have someone call them and ask what their experiences have been and ask if they've had anyone install and IFD and like it? hmmm. If anyone wants to do this send me a pm and I'll provide the shop name. Would be an interesting exercise.
     
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  18. jtheune

    jtheune En-Route

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    I had heard from a friend who was a early adopter of the 540 ( he bought one long before they were approved ) that Garmin's paperwork requires a Garmin tray for the 530 so if you got a 540 you could not just give sell the 530 and the 540 tray together. This was several years ago and I don't know if it's changed but it could be a factor in the price of a used 530
     
  19. bnt83

    bnt83 Final Approach

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    Garmin has an STC approved installation manual, it has a list of materials necessary to install the radio, its laughable to think they would have revised the manual to include other manufacturers products. In other cases the the Garmin manual might say "use tape p/n XXXXX or equivalent"

    Its pretty simple to figure out how someone would say you can't mix trays or other manufacturer's components.
     
  20. bnt83

    bnt83 Final Approach

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    I think you'll really only see functionality pitfalls with the IFD when you install two G5s and a GFC500 autopilot. It may never have all the features that are included in the GTN softwares.
     
  21. Lynn Dixon

    Lynn Dixon Pre-Flight

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    I absolutely love my IFD540. My airplane had a 530W previously, and the 540 was swapped right in for it. I have only briefly played with the newer GTN650 / 750's but I did not like the experience with Garmin in bumpy cockpits. I am a button-smasher and dial-twister. I MUCH prefer the physical buttons and knobs on my IFD than the GTN's touch screens, but thats strictly personal preference. My buddy who flys IFR a lot (Im only VFR) SWEARS by how easy flight planning and IFR flying is on the IFD as compared to a GTN.

    Most of my center stack is Avidyne, IFD540, AXP340 transponder for ADS-b out, and Skytrax 100 for ADS-B in.
     
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  22. arkvet

    arkvet Line Up and Wait

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    I heard that too. But seriously. Sometimes common sense should prevail. Lol. Swap the tray (which is easy) or sell the IFD tray with the old GNS and call it good. If you have a shop that is reluctant to install a GNS in that brand new IFD tray then maybe look for another shop.
     
  23. Ruth Preston

    Ruth Preston Filing Flight Plan

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    Position and hold!
     
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  24. bnt83

    bnt83 Final Approach

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    I'm pretty sure the big avionics manufacturers are like car manufacturers , the more inventory a dealer moves the better dealer pricing incentives and dealer rebates get. It doesn't surprise me when a Garmin dealer doesn't want to sell other bands.

    They sure as hell don't like "plug and play" upgrades, where they eat a lot more unpaid labor per paid hours. It takes time to answer phones, open a work order, order parts, receive parts, arrange airplane drop-off, arrange airplane pick-up, weather delays moving airplanes around, more weather delays, customer familiarization at pick-up etc.
     
    Last edited: Dec 21, 2018
  25. SCCutler

    SCCutler Administrator Management Council Member

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    I am very happy with my Avidyne IFD440, and have since added an AXP3340 for ADS-B out. The ability to use the iPad and the IFD100 app is extremely cool.

    FYI, Avidyne has been in business for around 25 years - they ain't exactly "new."

    I chose it for (1) price (a great deal to upgrade to a new navigator with a new warranty and still realize good value for my Garmin 430W trade), (2) features (lots), and (3) ease of install.

    No slam on the Garmins - I know of no one who has the 650/750 and does not love them. But then again, same for the Avidynes.
     
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  26. GBSoren

    GBSoren Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I'd agree with all of this. Plus at the time I did mine, when you registered your IFD they added 1 yr to the warranty. I'm not sure if they still offer that.

    I was showing some other pilots the IFD100 app the other day and they thought it was very cool and they had no idea Avidyne had it. I'm not trying to sell them, but it's awfully nice that we have a choice!
     
  27. Bryan Kahl

    Bryan Kahl Filing Flight Plan

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    I love the IFD100 app as well. Wait until you see our next update to the iPad simulator app (IFD Trainer) it is going to be awesome! Also, yes we do offer an additional free year of warranty when you register on myavidyne.com. You can actually get up to 4 years of warranty for free when you purchase an IFD. Here's how...

    1.When you purchase your IFD it comes with 1 year of warranty
    2. When you register it on MyAvidyne.com you get 1 more year of warranty
    3. After registering on MyAvidyne.com you will get a prompt to sign the Extended warranty (AeroPlan) if you sign you will ge 2 more years of warranty for free, for a total of 4 years of free warranty.


    Bryan Kahl
    Avidyne -
    Director of Customer Experience
    Bkahl@avidyne.com
     
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  28. Lynn Dixon

    Lynn Dixon Pre-Flight

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    Bryan,
    Any updates on when 10.3 might be available? I love my Avidyne, but was wondering when we might see an update.
    Oh, and the IFD Trainer has been great. My only complaint is that I can't set a "starting point". Would be nice if I could quickly get the app to locate my "airplane" in my home area since I am familiar with those charts and such.
     
  29. Bryan Kahl

    Bryan Kahl Filing Flight Plan

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    We have an IFD Software update scheduled to release in the first quarter of 2019. In regards to your IFD trainer feedback that will be one of the many additions, along with video tutorials, a section to provide feedback, and much, much more.
     
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  30. Badger

    Badger Pattern Altitude

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    someone will ask, so it might as well be me: Is the update free to current 540 owners? Will it be necessary for dealer to do the update? Or can owner do via usb stick?
     
  31. Bryan Kahl

    Bryan Kahl Filing Flight Plan

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    There are no plans at this time to charge for the next software release and it will have to be completed by an Avidyne dealer. Just to avoid confusion, Avidyne does not cover the cost of labor for installing software.

    Best regards,
    Bryan Kahl
     
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  32. mvferrer

    mvferrer Filing Flight Plan

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    In FMS/FPL, hit ENTR, Set ORIGIN to your home field or wherever you want to start from.
     
  33. GBSoren

    GBSoren Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Thanks Brian,

    Is there a way to check when you coverage ends? I thought I had done all those steps and would just like to check when my warranty will end.

    Gary
     
  34. Jim_CAK

    Jim_CAK Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Those are pretty much the same reasons we bought ours. I am still waiting for the install. The 3-4 week backlog when we purchased has turned into 8 weeks. We are supposed to get in right after Christmas.

    Bryan - thanks for the summary on the warranty. As soon as we get the unit installed I will register and follow up to get the extra warranty.
     
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  35. Chip Sylverne

    Chip Sylverne En-Route PoA Supporter

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    Fear is the poison of our lives.
    So, I'm currently flying with an MX20 MFD displaying my traffic, FIS-B wx, and approach charts. It also displays VOR radials when I have my #2 sl30 tuned to one. The only way I could install the IFD 540 is to lose the MX20 and one of my SL30's. What trade offs would I be making, what functionality would I be losing, if any? With the larger screen, do I still need an MFD?
    If there's anyone around the MD area that has one installed, please pm me. I'd really like to see one of these in the wild. Based DMW.
     
  36. Bryan Kahl

    Bryan Kahl Filing Flight Plan

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    Anytime Gary,

    If you wouldn't mind shooting me an email with your tail number I will look up your warranty information and get it back to you.

    Thanks
    Bryan Kahl
    bkahl@avidyne.com
     
  37. lancie00

    lancie00 Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I don't own and have never flown with either but I would buy the most common with the most support. That's why I own John Deere and Chevy instead of Massey Furguson and Fiat.
     
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  38. tspear

    tspear Pattern Altitude PoA Supporter

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    I have had good support with both companies in other products. I see no reason these would be different.

    As for market, on the scale if cars both GTN and IFD are boutique hand made Rolls Royce, as such market share does not mean much.

    Sent from my SM-J737T using Tapatalk
     
  39. SCCutler

    SCCutler Administrator Management Council Member

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    By this reasoning, Garmin should not even exist in avionics, right?

    It is, of course, prudent to avoid needless risk on the bleeding edge, but the marketplace evolves.
     
  40. GBSoren

    GBSoren Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I've owned equipment built by JD, Massey Ferguson (now owned by Agco) and Fiat (owns Case/New Holland). All of them make good equipment, and all of them break down....only difference is the JD guys will never admit to it!

    As for Chevy, biggest pile of crap vehicle I ever owned was a GM product. The best truck I've ever owned (and still do) is a 04 Dodge diesel, followed closely by an 08 Chrysler Apsen, neither are the most refined, high end vehicles, but trouble free and reliable.

    I swore I'd never buy another GM product, but after test driving a bunch of crossovers we ended up buying a Buick Enclave, so far we love it.

    Rambling I know, but making a point that if we limit ourselves to just who has the largest market share we'd never have options. I'm extremely happy with my IFD440, for me it's been a wonderful upgrade over the 430w, and offers many features that the 650 just doesn't have.
     
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