How to Choose a Multifunctional Display (MFD)

Rugged multifunction displays (MFD) are perhaps the most versatile and reliable forms of navigational equipment for water vessels to date. They offer many practical high-tech features that are widely used on both commercial and personal boats, including: fish finding technology, sonar, radar, chart plotters, sensors, and engine control. Multifunction displays are perfectly suitable for everyday marine use because they boast sunlight readability, water resistance, extreme temperature resistance, multiple input ports, and increased chassis durability. These are all features that are integral to daily use by marines given the rough nature of their jobs and daily environments.

6 Factors to Consider while Choosing Marine Multifunction Displays

Marine multifunction displays must be precisely suited to undertake and complete whatever tasks the operators are working on during any given time. That is why, when it comes to choosing the best marine electronics, there are at least six important factors that must be taken into consideration.

Screen Size

The screen size must be big enough to be readable and accessible by all users because, oftentimes, skippers will be utilizing multiple functions simultaneously. This means that they will have different windows open at the same time and all of them need to be equally visible at all times to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Integration of Marine Electronic Equipment

Choosing a multifunction display means diverting from the traditional marine technology which involved having a different machine and interface for each necessary application. Marine multifunction displays have the added convenience of integrating all of the required applications into one sturdy chassis that can withstand any and all conditions.


With the integration of all relevant applications in one multifunction display comes the added bonus of taking up less space on the helm of the vessel and reducing clutter because all applications are incorporated in one machine.


Marine multifunction display technology has made huge advancements in the past 20 years, which means a great deal has been improved. Many people may have some lingering concerns about how multifunction displays will actually function on a boating trip or mission, but the reality is that they are completely safe and reliable. Of course, it is important to make sure you are choosing the right multifunction display for your specific needs as there are many different kinds on the market.


On that note, the end user must have background knowledge and expertise in using marine electronics before embarking on the quest of selecting the best rugged multifunction display to suit their vessel and needs. With that in mind, many user interfaces are catered specifically for skippers who are looking to make modifications to the way they operate their vessels and modernize their navigational approach. Those who have prior knowledge of using charter plotters, radar machines, and fish finding technology should be able to glide into using marine multifunction displays quite easily.

Nauticomp Inc. has been a leading provider of rugged displays for marine, military, and industrial applications for over 20 years. We have decades of experience designing, engineering, and manufacturing displays and monitors for use in harsh outdoor environments. Our waterproof, sunlight-readable, multifunction displays are the most durable and versatile monitors for marine environments. We also offer custom designs, building individualized monitors to meet our clients’ needs. We are dedicated to providing high-performance displays that are at the forefront of leading-edge display technology. Contact us at 1-705-328-2992 for Canadian service and at 1-800-267-9491 for U.S. service.