We used the Coxmate SX as a comparison against a mixture of NK, Home build and Cox Orbs. As the NK units gradually fail we now purchase CoxOrbs but wanted to test against Coxmate to see we are getting the most effective amplifier.
First impressions: Clear display, better battery life, simple to use as a basic unit but with a stack of features to ply with in future. We used it late afternoon / early evening and the backlit display was excellent. Everything fits together well.
On the first outing the only issue was getting a good GPS signal. The rest was fairly idiot proof.
We did subjective tests:
- The sound was better and easier to control down the boat than anything else.
- This may be a reflection on how we have previously had to set up. There is a temptation to set audio to “Squawk” level but we found we could keep the volume low because the audio was clear.
- The GPS was good as we usually rely on smartphone apps.
What the coach thought
The boat was calmer and better controlled as the cox wasn’t shouting to be understood. It also meant I didn’t need to shout over the cox from the launch.
What the athletes & cox thought
Rowers enjoyed it and the cox was impressed except for graphics – which are a bit 70s. I will make the point that the clearer and more conversational the audio from cox to crew, the less dramatic the rowing ad less panic-y the whole outing becomes as everyone chills out a bit and listens to the cox and coach.
I can only ask for bigger control buttons — I didn’t get round to seeing if there was a audible bleep when you press them but cold fingers don’t feel the buttons well so if that was there. Update the display to TFT for better graphics – no need for colour though.