WatchMate Vision smartAIS Touchscreen Transponder with WiFi and NMEA 2000 Gateway

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Cruising World: The Most Advanced Class B AIS

"WatchMate Vision is arguably the most advanced Class B AIS transponder ever built"

Get the smartAIS advantage of Safety Underway, Safety at Anchor and Safety for your Crew with a fully standalone smartAIS transponder, WatchMate Vision.

2012 NMMA Innovation Award Winner of the NMMA Innovation Award, the WatchMate Vision AIS Transponder offers the best in collision avoidance systems while also providing new ways to view AIS on mobile devices. WatchMate Vision is the ultimate AIS transponder. It can be fully standalone or integrated with chart plotters, MFD's and NMEA instruments.

The easiest way to integrate AIS with mobile devices. Vision’s safety data can also be used wirelessly with mobile devices running a variety of apps. You can securely connect up to 5 other devices simultaneously. You can have have a wireless connection to your laptop, smartphone and tablet - all simultaneously! And for even larger networks, you can wirelessly connect the WatchMate Vision to an external WiFi router for unlimited expansion capability.

Vesper Marine AIS transponders are the only AIS with a fast 5Hz GPS update rate providing greater detail and higher resolution plotting resulting in smooth tracking on chart plotters, MFD's and mobile apps.

Anchor Watch

The Vision Class B AIS transponder brings a new dimension to AIS display by the intuitive way it eliminates unwanted alarms and removes clutter from the display. It prioritizes and shows only the targets that have a current collision risk while allowing you to control the powerful features according to the current situation (Offshore, Coastal, Harbor or Anchored).

Customizable filters based on vessel range, speed, closest point of approach, and time allows you to further fine tune the display.

For access to the most important information, a smart alarm banner displays at the top of the screen. Without obscuring important information, the alarm banner includes details of the highest priority alarm. Touching the banner is all that is required to take you directly to the source of the alarm including automatically zooming the display range, selecting the target, graphically showing the crossing situation and bringing up full vessel details.

AIS Man Overboard (MOB) alarm

A true safety device, the WatchMate Vision has an innovative AIS Man Overboard (MOB) alarm. It sounds the internal alarm or you can optionally connect an external alarm. Equip your crewmembers with any manufacturer's AIS MOB device, and you'll be immediately alerted if someone falls overboard.

No other devices need to be connected or switched on. Vision silently and continuously watches for an MOB and sounds the alarm as soon as it detects one. It then displays on the screen the continuous bearing and range to the person in the water.

MOB Management

You can even tell Vision to associate individual MOB devices with the names of each of your crew members or other personal identifiers. When an alarm is triggered it displays this information which is quicker and easier to recognize than the string of MMSI numbers that all other devices display.

Anchor Watch enhances your safety

You'll be safer and sleep better because of the dedicated Anchor Watch.

When you drop anchor activate it on the Vision screen, or by using your smartphone or tablet from anywhere on-board, and the WatchMate Vision sounds the alarm if you drift outside a circular zone configured around your anchor position.

Monitor your position remotely on your mobile devices using the free WatchMate app. If your mobile is powered off or the app is closed, the WatchMate Vision anchor watch continues to monitor the situation and sound the alarm to warn you.

Anchor Watch

Past positions let you see at a glance how the boat is swinging

Automated DSC calling

Direct DSC Calling

Connect any VHF radio and WatchMate Vision provides your GPS position to the radio for its emergency DSC function.

In addition, connect a compatible VHF using NMEA-0183 and you can place DSC calls directly to individual vessels by touching them on the screen. No need to punch a string of MMSI digits into your VHF radio to place a call.

Automated DSC calling is compatible with all current generation Icom fixed-mount radios. Other radios do not currently have support for Vision's automated DSC calling but all VHF radios accept Vision-supplied GPS positions.

The WatchMate Vision is like having three products all in one dedicated display

  • A unique color touchscreen AIS transponder that transmits your vessel position and details and receives this information from other vessels with AIS transponders. Super sensitive dual parallel AIS receivers provide greater range than other AIS transponders. Fast 5Hz GPS navigation computations result in smoother tracks and greater accuracy.
  • A secure Wifi router that allows up to five other devices to connect to it and each other wirelessly. GPS, AIS and NMEA instrument data can be shared with all your mobile devices and laptops. These devices can even talk to each other using the WatchMate Vision as their router. If you need greater range or more device connections, simply add an ordinary WiFi router and easily configure the WatchMate Vision to join that router's network instead of creating its own. No other AIS transponder or marine WiFi can do this.
Click for a larger image
  • A NMEA 2000 gateway that translates NMEA 2000 instrument data and makes it available over WiFi to your mobile devices. You'll get all your instrument data displayed on the mobile app of your choice! There is no need to buy a separate NMEA 2000 gateway product when you have a WatchMate Vision that supports a wide range of wind, depth, speed, heading, log, and temperature PGN's. It even translates NMEA 2000 to USB for computers and NMEA 0183 for older plotters too.

Display and translate NMEA instrument data

Navigation instruments

WatchMate Vision displays NMEA instrument data (both NMEA 0183 and NMEA 2000) such as wind, depth, water speed and water temperature.

NMEA 2000 instruments are translated to NMEA 0183 and output to USB and WiFi allowing it to be viewed with most 3rd party navigation software and apps.

This innovative easy to use AIS transponder combines:

    Download on the AppStore
    Get it on Google Play
  • Free iPad, iPhone and Android app provides a "radar" style plotter screen of all nearby vessels. It provides configuration and status monitoring. And it's an interactive remote control allowing you to mute alarms, filter targets, change alarm profiles and much more.
  • Compact fully self-contained design allows for mounting most anywhere
  • Large bright color touchscreen with worldwide coastal outlines
  • NMEA 2000 & 0183, WiFi and USB
  • Translates and routes NMEA 2000 instrument data over WiFi, USB and NMEA 0183
  • Makes all your NMEA 0183 data available over WiFi and USB. Use your tablet or computer to view instrument data whether it is coming from NMEA 2000 or NMEA 0183
  • Internal high-performance parallel two channel AIS transponder
  • Includes 50 channel GPS receiver with internal antenna (requires an unobstructed view of the sky or optional external antenna)
  • You can switch this transponder into Silent Mode (receive-only) directly from the screen or from your iPhone, iPad, Android phone and tablet, PC or Mac
  • WiFi configuration options: Access Point creates a network or Client of an existing router
  • View AIS and navigate from your computer, smart phone or tablet from anywhere on your boat over wireless connections for up to five devices
  • Incorporates Vesper Marine's new multi-processor architecture for fast performance and AIS transmission reliability
  • Fully waterproof (IPx7)
  • Easy to install: Just plug in a VHF antenna and connect to 12-24 VDC.

Not just a product, but an extensible AIS platform

Vision is an upgradeable AIS platform, designed to be compatible with a continuous stream of feature updates, adding new and unique capabilities. These are provided in periodic updates which all owners may download for free by visiting Some features described here may require an update if it hasn't been installed already.

Mobile App Support

Download the Vesper Marine app
Download the Vesper Marine app
The free Vesper Marine WatchMate app is a great way to configure and monitor your WatchMate Vision AIS transponder.

View and update your vessel information, monitor transponder and GPS status, and show all AIS-equipped vessels on an easy to use "radar" plotting screen.

This is the only mobile app with instant target acquisition. All other apps take time for AIS targets to appear, but the Vesper Marine app takes advantage of unique capabilities inside your WatchMate Vision allowing it to display all received targets immediately when you start the app.

The unique target filtering eliminates the clutter of icons seen on all other apps and allows you to focus on the most important vessels for collision avoidance.

Activate the Anchor Watch on your WatchMate Vision at the windlass or from anywhere on the boat. Monitor your position relative to the anchor location and receive alarms on your Apple or Android phone or tablet while in your bunk or anywhere else on-board.

Download on the AppStore Get it on Google Play
In addition, the WatchMate Vision is supported by a growing set of 3rd party mobile apps and we frequently post reviews of iOS and Android apps for compatibility and features.

iPhone, iPad and Android app

More than a simple mobile AIS viewer, Vision offers groundbreaking control with a free iPhone, iPad and Android app, allowing boaters to remotely control alerts, alarms and transponder settings.

Instant Target Acquisition

Taking advantage of unique capabilities inside your WatchMate Vision, the WatchMate mobile app displays all targets immediately. Unlike MFD's and other mobile apps, this eliminates the need to wait for vessels to re-transmit AIS data before their positions can be identified. As soon as a mobile device is turned on or the WatchMate app is started, the app immediately displays target data for all vessels without waiting for it to incrementally appear as each vessel periodically re-transmits. Up-to-date information such as vessel positions, names and details are immediately available rather than waiting up to 6 minutes for re-transmissions.

Color Touchscreen

The 145mm (5.7”) VGA Color TFT, resistive touchscreen offers a new experience in AIS information display and management.

Plotter Screen Magnifier

WatchMate Vision’s unique magnifier appears on the AIS Plotter Screen when needed allowing users to select targets without losing position context and scale.

Worldwide Built-In Coastal Outlines

Coastal outlines enable high level situational awareness and assist your understanding of your location in relation to major land areas.

This feature should not be used as a replacement for accurate navigational charts.

Intelligent Filtering

In crowded operating areas the WatchMate Vision eliminates clutter and false alarms with sophisticated filtering options. Filtered vessels fade out and change color when they don’t create a collision threat. This means low threat vessels still remain visible without causing screen clutter or creating a distraction. It's easy to switch filters on and off any time and immediately see the low risk vessels fade in and out.


Vessels and alarms are presented in priority order.

GPS receiver

Displays GPS satellite status and navigation data such as your position, course and speed from Vision's built-in GPS receiver. This can be easily viewed from the My Vessel screen. Vision's GPS receiver is a high performance 50 channel GPS receiver (with WAAS/EGNOS) especially designed for marine use.

Vision and XB-8000 are the only AIS transponders that can be used as a source of GPS data on a NMEA 2000 network and is also the only AIS transponder with a fast 5Hz GPS navigation and update rate. This results in higher resolution and smoother tracks on your plotter or MFD, even during high speed maneuvers.

Integrated GPS Antenna

Includes a built-in GPS antenna that provides GPS data to the integrated 50 channel GPS receiver. This internal antenna allows for simple installation. However if needed, an external GPS antenna connection is provided and an optional external antenna is available. Note: For best performance, the built-in GPS antenna requires a clear and unobstructed view of the sky. It usually works well when installed in a cockpit, under a non-metallic dodger or under a fiberglass hard-top. However, if you are mounting the WatchMate Vision in a location which does not provide adequate GPS signal coverage (eg. near or obstructed by metal objects or "down below" at a nav station), we recommend using our external GPS antenna.

Connect Wirelessly to Other Devices Using WiFi 802.11 b/g

WatchMate Vision provides dual WiFi configuration as either a secure Access Point supporting up to five other devices simultaneously or connected to an existing router providing WiFi expansion capability.

Certified NMEA 2000 connectivity

Allows easy standards based connection of AIS data to other NMEA 2000 equipment such as plotters, radars and MFD's.

Translates and routes your NMEA instrument data over WiFi

Translates NMEA 2000 instrument data (heading, wind, depth, speed, log, temperature) and routes to mobile devices over WiFi, USB or NMEA 0183 for supporting plotters without NMEA 2000. All this data is combined with GPS and AIS data and sent simultaneously to up to five WiFi devices (tablets, smart phones, computers) and well as computers via USB or plotters using NMEA 0183. Display and use this data in your navigation applications such as NavPlay, iNavX or SEAiq on an iPad. Or use Android apps and Windows or Mac navigation software. For larger WiFi networks, you can extend the number of connected devices by adding an ordinary WiFi router.

Interact With Applications on SmartPhones, Tablets and Computers

Wireless viewing of AIS targets using apps like WatchMate, NavPlay, iNavX, SEAiq and iRegatta on iPad, WatchMate, droidAIS, Sailtracker and iRegatta on Android tablets or your favorite navigation software on computer (Windows or Mac).

Watch the video here that takes you through the steps to enable AIS information to be displayed on iNavX for iPad.

Complete Class B AIS Transponder

Vision is a Class B AIS transponder with a two channel parallel receiver and transmitter. It incorporates Vesper Marine’s new multiprocessor architecture for fast performance and includes dedicated AIS processors ensuring reliable, instant AIS data acquisition. This high performance transponder means greater range and increased safety. Connects to 12 or 24 volt power supply.

Fully Water Proof

The WatchMate Vision is water proof (IPx7) so it can safely be mounted most anywhere. Unlike many touchscreen devices, you can even operate it with wet hands.

USB Connection (waterproof and locking with optional cable)

The USB connection can be used to connect Vision to on-board computers. Vision provides a GPS and AIS data feed directly to computer-based navigation software. An optional 5m (16') waterproof cable features a locking ring so it can't vibrate out of the back of the WatchMate Vision.

Silent Mode Control via iPhone, iPad, Android, PC or Mac

Allows Vision to be put in Silent Mode. When in this mode, the AIS receivers and GPS continue to operate normally. The only change is all transmissions are inhibited. Perfect for those times when you want privacy. Silent mode can be controlled directly on the screen or via WiFi from your PC, Mac, iPhone, iPad, or Android phone or tablet.


The perfect companion for AIS Search and Rescue and Man Over Board devices, including the latest models. Sounds the alarm whenever an AIS-SART or AIS-MOB is triggered. Clearly identifies them on the display and provides continuous position updates as well as bearing and range to the SART or MOB. You can associate crew names with MOB devices in the event of an alarm.

Anchor Watch

Activate the anchor watch when you drop the anchor by touching the screen or using a mobile device to activate it remotely from the windlass or anywhere on-board. Vision plots your position in relation to the anchor and marks your positions over time for easy visual identification if you are dragging. The alarm sounds if you drag outside the radius you've selected.


Computes the closest point of approach and time until CPA. Alarms may be based on these and other factors.

Bearing and Range

Computes the bearing and range to each vessel. Bearing can be displayed in magnetic to facilitate easy visual identification using your compass and binoculars. Bearings can alternatively be displayed in true degrees.

Identify Your "Fleet"

Targets marked as members of your fleet are displayed with a special icon. Use this to indicate your friends or vessels you commonly work with.

CPA Alarm

Triggers alarm if a vessel will come too close. Full control of alarm parameters.

Guard Alarm

Sounds alarm if any vessel comes within the specified range. Both CPA alarms and guard alarms may be used together.

External Alarm Trigger

In addition to the internal alarm, an external buzzer, alarm, or signal light can be interfaced without requiring any additional relays (max 150mA).

Safety Messages

Displays received AIS Broadcast Safety Messages. These messages may contain important safety, navigation, weather, or shipping information.

Aids to Navigation

Full support for AIS aids to navigation including off-position and virtual aid indicators.

External Interface

The WatchMate Vision provides complete AIS and GPS output and is easily interfaced to chart plotters, MFD's, radars or computers via WiFi, NMEA 2000, NMEA 0183 or USB.

Self Diagnosis

Self diagnosis to provide warnings if AIS, GPS, or antenna are not functioning.

Stand-alone unit doesn't require chart plotter, computer or radar

The WatchMate Vision is easy to interface to these devices but none are necessary for its operation. The Vision is a fully stand-alone AIS collision warning solution.

Concise and easy to read displays

Uncluttered easy to read displays with split screen option showing all available AIS data with quick access to the most critical information.

Built-in world-wide coastlines

Provides situation awareness to assists you in understanding your location in relation to major land areas.

This feature should not be used as a replacement for accurate navigational charts.

Dual WiFi configuration

WatchMate Vision provides dual WiFi configuration as either a secure Access Point supporting up to five other devices or connected to an existing router providing WiFi expansion capability.

Wireless access to AIS information

View AIS and navigate from your PC, Mac or iPad and Android tablet from anywhere on your boat over wireless connections.

Interact with a variety of standard applications on iPad and Android tablets

Remotely access AIS information on other applications via smart devices.

Easy installation

Mounting the WatchMate Vision is made easy with innovative cable connection points that create low profile installations. The unit can be surface mounted or it can be mounted with the bracket supplied. As well as being waterproof the Vision also has multiple connection options; NMEA 2000, NMEA 0183, WiFi and USB.

Fully certified NMEA 2000

Very easy standards based connection of AIS data to other NMEA 2000 equipment.

Fast 5Hz GPS navigation update rate

Results in higher accuracy and smoother tracks on plotters, MFD's, PC and Mac software and mobile apps even when doing high speed maneuvers.

Remote transponder control

Controls transponder and silent mode features remotely via iPhone, iPad, or Android phones and tablets allowing users to remotely control the WatchMate Vision.

Increased safety

With AIS your safety is increased day and night when offshore or in busy traffic areas. AIS Man Overboard alarms help protect your crew when underway and Anchor Alarm alerts you if your anchor drags.

Safety at night

When night falls or the weather is bad it is often difficult to see other vessel's lights or determine their direction. Vision shows immediately which way the vessel is moving and will even plot the crossing situation. The WatchMate Vision display can also be placed in night mode to make viewing that much easier.

Positive identification

You’ll have each vessel's name and call sign and others using AIS will also have yours. If you wish to call another vessel you will be able to ensure you are talking to the correct vessel. This is very important when operating in busy areas or in bad weather when visibility is reduced.

What's In The Box

  • Protective cover
  • Installation guide
  • Mounting bracket with thumbscrews
  • Flush mounting template
  • 2m (6.5') Power/data cable
  • 1m (3') USB cable
  • Cleaning cloth
  • Flush mounting seal and screws
Size 172mm wide x 130mm high x 60mm depth (6 7/8” x 5 1/8” x 2 3/8”)
LCD touchscreen 145mm (5 11/16”), VGA (640x480) Color TFT, Resistive Touch
Environmental Waterproof (IP67: submersible to 1m for 30 mins)
Operating temperature -25°C to +55°C (-13°F to 131°F)
Power supply 10-32 VDC, 6W nominal
Coastal outlinesWorld-wide included
Number of receivers 2 AIS, 1 DSC (timeshared)
Receive sensitivity -113 dBm (<20% PER)
Number of transmitters 1 AIS
Transmit power output 33 dBm (2W)
GPS50 channel with internal antenna. Supports WAAS and EGNOS. Optional external antenna is required if Vision is mounted without a clear view of the sky.
GPS navigation rateSelectable 1Hz or 5Hz with magnetic variation included in output
GPS sensitivity-159dBm tracking & navigation
-142dBm acquisition (cold start)
GPS accuracyPosition 2.5m CEP, SBAS 2.0m CEP
VHF antenna required 50 ohm, 156-162MHz, max 2:1 VSWR, PL-259 connector
Serial data 1 fully isolated USB port (mini), 1 isolated NMEA 0183 input (RS422 4800/38400 baud) 1 NMEA 0183 output (RS422 4800/38400 baud)
Connectivity NMEA 2000, NMEA 0183, USB, Wireless 802.11 b/g

All input NMEA 0183 sentences are repeated to the NMEA 0183 output, USB and WiFi. Selected NMEA 2000 PGN's (heading, wind, depth, speed, temperature, and log) are translated to NMEA 0183 sentences and repeated to the NMEA 0183 output, USB and WiFi. This allows a wide variety of NMEA 0183 and NMEA 2000 instruments to be interfaced and output to all other connected devices.
NMEA 2000NMEA 2000 certified. LEN 2. Micro-C male connector. Female drop cable required (not included). Compatible with all NMEA 2000 certified Raymarine SeaTalk NG devices (DeviceNet cable required), Garmin, Furuno, SimNet (NMEA 2000 adapter cable required, Navico part 24006199 or 24006413), and other NMEA 2000 certified products.
Wireless Access Point for up to 5 devices or client of existing router
Wireless Security WPA / WPA2 Personal (PSK)
ProtocolsIEC 61162-1, NMEA 0183, NMEA 0183 HS, NMEA 2000
StandardsIEC 62287, IEC 60945, IEC 61108, IEC 61162, ITU-R M.1371, ITU-R M.825, ITU-R M.1084
ApprovalsBSH, BABT, CE, US Coast Guard, US FCC, Industry Canada
WarrantyTwo year world-wide warranty
Supplied With • 2m Power/Data cable
• USB Cable
• Mounting bracket
• Flush mounting hardware
• Protective cover
Optional • External GPS Antenna
• SP160 VHF/AIS Antenna Splitter
• Waterproof USB cable


Specifications may change due to product improvements and different product release versions.

Includes Vesper Marine's patented AIS technology. For more information about our international patents, contact us.

  WatchMate Vision Icom
MA500 TR
Camino 201
CSD 300 *
Color touchscreen for easy operation Yes No No No No
Full receive of all Class A and B AIS data and transmission of Class B AIS data Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Customize and filter targets when operating in busy areas Yes No No No No
Computes & prioritizes targets by CPA, TCPA, bearing, range etc Yes No No No No
Anchor watch triggers an alarm if you drift outside a configurable circular zone Yes No No No No
AIS Man Overboard (MOB) alarm triggers if a crew member falls overboard (works with any manufacturer AIS MOB device, not included) Yes No No No No
Ability to connect to computers via waterproof USB Yes No No No No
Galvanic isolated USB protects AIS and computers from possible damage and allows USB to be used at all times Yes No No No No
Low power consumption Good, 6W Poor, 8.4W Poor, <10W Poor, <10W Poor, <13W
Built in GPS Antenna Yes No No No No
Dedicated iPhone, iPad and Android apps Yes No No No No
WiFi (802.11 b/g) Yes No No No No
Dual WiFi configuration allows connection to an existing WiFi router or can create its own WiFi network Yes No No No No
Provides a NMEA 2000 to WiFi 802.11 b/g gateway (routes NMEA 2000 instrument data to WiFi and USB) Yes No No No No
Certified NMEA 2000 Yes No No
Class B vessel names, type, size not visible
No No
Multiple alarm profiles (Anchor, Harbor, Coastal, Offshore) Yes No No No No
Graphical Plot Shows Crossing Situations Yes No No No No
World-wide coastal outlines Yes No Yes Yes No
Ability to set waypoints No Yes No No Yes
Built-in alarm plus external alarm/buzzer/indicator control Yes Yes No Yes Yes
Waterproof, can be externally mounted Yes Limited Yes Limited Yes

* Comar CSD-300 requires purchasing and installing an external "black box" AIS transponder such as the CSB-200

Please Note: This information has been gathered from public sources. To the best of Vesper Marine’s knowledge it was correct at the time of publication (early 2016). We want to keep this up-to-date, so if you see anything missing or incorrect, please let us know so we can update this information.