Garmin 1243xsv vs 8612xsv: Feature Showdown

garmin 1243xsv vs 8612xsv

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If you’re in the market for a new marine GPS device, two standout options are the Garmin 1243xsv and the 8612xsv. Both models offer advanced features and state-of-the-art technology, making them popular choices among boaters and anglers.

In this article, we’ll compare the Garmin 1243xsv and the 8612xsv, discussing their features, performance, and functionality. By the end, you’ll have a better understanding of which device is the best fit for your boating needs.

Key Takeaways

  • Choosing the right marine GPS device is essential for a successful and safe boating experience.
  • The Garmin 1243xsv and 8612xsv are two popular and advanced GPS models from Garmin.
  • Features such as design and display, navigation, sonar and fishfinding capabilities, connectivity and integration, and performance and durability are essential to consider.
  • By comparing the features, performance, and functionality of these two models, you can make an informed decision based on your specific boating needs.
  • Stay tuned for a thorough review and comparison of the Garmin 1243xsv and 8612xsv.

Design and Display

When it comes to marine GPS devices, the design and display are as important as their features and functionalities. The Garmin 1243xsv and the 8612xsv stand out in these areas, boasting sleek designs that are both functional and attractive.

The Garmin 1243xsv features a 12-inch display, while the Garmin 8612xsv boasts a larger 12.3-inch screen. Both displays are impressively clear and easy to navigate, making it easy to track your location and monitor your surroundings. The displays are also highly responsive, ensuring quick and efficient operation, even in the most challenging marine conditions.

The resolution of the displays is also something to note. The Garmin 1243xsv’s display boasts a high-resolution screen of 1280 x 800 pixels, while the Garmin 8612xsv’s display has a resolution of 1280 x 720 pixels. These resolutions ensure clear, sharp images, and text, making it easy to read maps and track your movements.

Garmin GPS device display

In terms of design, both the Garmin 1243xsv and the 8612xsv are sleek and modern, featuring slim bezels that maximize screen space. The two devices are also impressively thin, making them easy to install discreetly on any marine vessel.

The Garmin 1243xsv and the 8612xsv are designed with the user’s needs in mind, boasting intuitive menus and easy-to-use interfaces. This design ensures seamless navigation for even novice users, facilitating access to the full array of functionalities offered on the devices.

Display Comparison

Device Screen Size (inches) Display Resolution (pixels)
Garmin 1243xsv 12 1280 x 800
Garmin 8612xsv 12.3 1280 x 720

Navigation Features

The Garmin 1243xsv and 8612xsv are both equipped with advanced navigation systems that offer superior accuracy and a wide range of functionalities. Let’s take a closer look at the chartplotter features and navigation systems of these Garmin marine electronics.

GPS Accuracy

The GPS accuracy of both devices is impressive, ensuring precise navigation in all water conditions. The Garmin 8612xsv features a built-in 10Hz GPS/GLONASS receiver, while the Garmin 1243xsv boasts a 1kW dual CHIRP sonar with a GPS antenna. Both devices offer access to the extensive Garmin Quickdraw Contours community, allowing for up-to-date contour mapping.

Waypoint Creation

Creating, editing, and saving waypoints is simple and straightforward when using either Garmin GPSMAP device. The streamlined interface of the 8612xsv and 1243xsv makes it easy to mark, label, and store your favorite fishing spots, anchorages, or other points of interest.

Charts and Mapping

The Garmin 1243xsv and 8612xsv are preloaded with BlueChart g3 coastal charts, LakeVü freshwater maps, and a combination of both, depending on the device. These maps are augmented by Garmin’s exclusive Navionics data, which provides detailed contour lines, shallow water shading, and satellite imagery.

Integration and Compatibility

Both devices can be integrated into your existing marine electronics systems, including autopilots, digital switching, and more. The Garmin 8612xsv can connect with multiple Garmin displays while sharing user data, while the Garmin 1243xsv makes it easy to connect to compatible ActiveCaptain-enabled chartplotters and sonars.

garmin navigation system

“With advanced navigation features and chartplotter capabilities, the Garmin 1243xsv and 8612xsv are sure to enhance any boater’s navigational experience.”

Sonar and Fishfinding Capabilities

For anglers, having a quality sonar and fishfinder is essential for locating fish. In this section, we’ll compare the sonar technologies and fishfinding capabilities of the Garmin 1243xsv and the 8612xsv.

The Garmin 1243xsv features an integrated CHIRP traditional sonar and CHIRP ClearVü and SideVü scanning sonar, which provides exceptional clarity and detail of what’s beneath and around your boat. The device also includes a built-in high-sensitivity GPS and preloaded BlueChart g3 coastal charts and LakeVü g3 inland maps for top-notch navigation capabilities on the water.

On the other hand, the Garmin 8612xsv comes with a dual-channel CHIRP sonar with ClearVü and SideVü scanning sonar, making it ideal for anglers searching for high-frequency, clear imagery for shallow waters. It also has a GPSMAP Auto Guidance feature, which provides a suggested path to follow based on user-defined specifications.

When comparing the two devices’ fishfinding capabilities, both offer similar features like Split-screen zoom, Ultrascroll, and AutoGain technology for superior target tracking. However, the Garmin 1243xsv allows anglers to create and save their own custom maps, making it a perfect choice for frequent users of specific fishing locations.

Overall, While both devices offer high-quality sonar and fishfinding capabilities, the Garmin 1243xsv stands out with its excellent mapping features and CHIRP ClearVü and SideVü scanning sonar technology.

garmin fishfinder comparison

Connectivity and Integration

Garmin 1243xsv and 8612xsv come with a variety of connectivity options for your convenience. Both devices include Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity, making it easy to connect your GPS with other smart devices. There is also an NMEA 2000 network connector that enables seamless integration with other Garmin marine electronics.

Connectivity Features Garmin 1243xsv Garmin 8612xsv
Wireless Connectivity Wi-Fi, Bluetooth Wi-Fi, Bluetooth
NMEA 2000 Connectivity Yes Yes

With the advanced networking capabilities, you can exchange data with other Garmin devices like radar, sonar, and autopilot systems. Additionally, the Garmin Marine Network enables you to share maps, sonar, radar, and user data across multiple devices.

In conclusion, the Garmin 1243xsv and 8612xsv offer reliable connectivity and integration options that make it easy to connect and use with other marine electronics.

Performance and Durability

When it comes to marine GPS devices, performance and durability are two critical factors to consider. In this section, we’ll evaluate the performance and durability of both the Garmin 1243xsv and the 8612xsv.

Processing Power

The processing power of a device significantly affects its performance, and both the Garmin 1243xsv and the 8612xsv do not disappoint. The Garmin 1243xsv comes with a powerful quad-core processor coupled with 8GB of storage space, and the 8612xsv boasts a dual-core processor and 16GB of storage. Both devices offer incredible data processing speeds, ensuring you receive accurate and timely navigation information.

Resistance to Harsh Marine Conditions

Marine GPS devices encounter harsh conditions like splashes, saltwater, and direct sunlight. As such, the device’s durability is equally essential. Both the Garmin 1243xsv and the 8612xsv are designed to withstand harsh marine conditions. The devices come with high IPX ratings, enabling them to handle splashes and exposure to water. Additionally, they feature high-quality and durable marine-grade materials that withstand prolonged exposure to sunlight.


In terms of reliability, both devices are exceptional. The Garmin 1243xsv features a built-in high-sensitivity GPS and GLONASS receiver, offering highly accurate data that aids in navigation. Similarly, the 8612xsv features a high-precision GPS receiver that ensures accurate navigation data. Additionally, both devices support expanding your navigation capabilities with optional radar, sonar, and more.


After comparing the features, performance, and functionality of the Garmin 1243xsv and the 8612xsv, it’s clear that both devices offer exceptional capabilities for boating enthusiasts.

The Garmin 1243xsv is an excellent option for those seeking a mid-sized chartplotter with advanced sonar and fishfinding capabilities. Its echoMAP technology and ClearVü and SideVü sonar produce clear, detailed images of underwater environments, aiding in successful fishing trips.

On the other hand, the Garmin 8612xsv is a top-of-the-line option for those who demand the best in marine GPS technology. Its large, high-resolution display and advanced navigation features make it ideal for use in all types of water conditions.

No matter which device you choose, you’re investing in a reliable and durable piece of marine electronics from Garmin. Both the 1243xsv and the 8612xsv are built to withstand harsh marine conditions, ensuring you can rely on them for years to come.

In the end, the decision between the Garmin 1243xsv vs 8612xsv comes down to your specific boating needs. Consider your budget, the size of your boat, the type of fishing you do, and your level of technical expertise when making your choice. No matter which device you choose, you’ll be rewarded with a top-of-the-line piece of marine electronics from Garmin.


Is the Garmin 1243xsv a better option than the Garmin 8612xsv?

The answer depends on your specific boating needs. Both devices offer excellent features, performance, and functionality. It’s recommended to compare their specifications and consider factors such as screen size, sonar capabilities, and connectivity before making a decision.

What are the key differences between the Garmin 1243xsv and the 8612xsv?

The Garmin 1243xsv has a smaller screen size of 12 inches, while the 8612xsv boasts a larger screen size of 12 inches. Additionally, the 8612xsv offers more advanced features and higher processing power compared to the 1243xsv. However, the 1243xsv still provides excellent performance and functionality for most boating needs.

Can I use the Garmin 1243xsv or the 8612xsv for fishing?

Yes, both devices are equipped with advanced sonar technologies and fishfinding capabilities, making them suitable for fishing. They offer clear sonar images, reliable depth capabilities, and other features that enhance the fishing experience.

Are the Garmin 1243xsv and the 8612xsv compatible with other Garmin marine electronics?

Yes, both devices are designed to work seamlessly with other Garmin marine electronics. They offer connectivity options such as Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and NMEA connectivity, allowing you to integrate them into a comprehensive marine electronics system.

How durable are the Garmin 1243xsv and the 8612xsv?

Both devices are built to withstand harsh marine conditions. They are resistant to water, corrosion, and other environmental factors, ensuring long-lasting durability and reliability.


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