Avionics Report

December 2011 Issue

Bendix/King’s Silver Crown Plus line, the KX155A, left, proved a capable box, but is limited to 28-volt airplanes.

Is the Navcomm Dead? Not Quite Yet

Not everyone needs or can afford a new color mapcomm, so there’s still a place for venerable navcomms as second fiddle. Here’s how to buy smart.

Back in the day, you were top dog if your panel sported dual KX155 or MK12D digital navcomms. These days, that same panel begs to be upgraded to all-in-one navigators while the standalone navcomm plays second fiddle as backup. But that doesn’t make the navcomm radio extinct. For IFR flying, you’ll want the second comm radio while a backup nav receiver could be handy for raw data crosscheck on an RNAV approach. For basic LSAs, a standalone navcomm might be the only radio you’ll ever need.

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