When Garmin introduced the G3X Touch displays as an upgrade to the original G3X a few years ago, they did so with a large screen, landscape format screen that provided plenty f room to display everything a pilot needed to navigate and monitor aircraft systems. They followed it up with a 7″ landscape display for those that wanted a secondary display, but had limited panel space. Neither of these fit in the place of the original G3X 370/375 portrait format displays, making upgrading to the faster touch screens difficult for some.
The problem was solved with the announcement last week of new portrait oriented displays that fit in the same space as the original screens. With minor changes to the use of corner cutouts, and replacement of the panel-mounted nut plates, the new displays replace the old with identical wiring pin-outs, allowing pilots to move up to the touch screens with minimal effort.
We got our first chance to put our hands on the new displays, expected to be available by May or June to the consumer market, when the Sun ‘n Fun show opened up this morning. Having used the larger touch screens, the new displays felt and operated very naturally – anyone who has flown with the Touch will know these already, ad those that are upgrading will see much that is familiar, and will pick up the additional tricks and tips easily. We suspect that after a few minutes, it will be hard to remember that there were any differences at all between the old and the new. The advantages of the new include faster processors, finer graphics, and the ability to see sectional charts as well as the standard Garmin EFIS charts.
We look forward to flying with the new displays, and will report back how they perform as soon as we get the chance.