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GPSMAP 168 Sounder

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 Updates & Downloads 

 GPSMAP 168 Sounder software version 3.60 as of June 22, 2004  

  Receive Update E-mail

Would you like to receive an e-mail when this software is updated?


  Download Factory Tide Settings

If MapSource data that does not contain tide points (e.g., U.S. Topo) was already loaded into your unit before you downloaded new unit software 3.03 or above, and you simply want to restore your pre-existing tide data, please download this file. This will replace the MapSource maps with tide data.

Download (1.35 MB)

  Download Recommended MapSource US Tides Software

If you do not own a MapSource product which contains tides, but you do own another MapSource product, you can download and install this free MapSource U.S. Tides software. You must already own a MapSource product for this download to work. You can combine tide stations coverage from the Tides product with maps from other MapSource products and upload this to your unit.

Download (5.13 MB)

Download (1.17 MB)
  View download instructions and system requirements


  • Important Tide Station Notice: Beginning with software version 3.03, tide station data is stored in the same area as MapSource Maps. If you update your software from version 2.61 or earlier, you may lose all tide stations. If this happens, and if you would like to use the tide prediction feature of your GPSMAP 162/168 Sounder, please download and install one of the additional software packages listed to the right.
  • Versions 2.12 and later will change all map configurations back to factory defaults when upgrading from earlier software versions.
  • Versions 2.50 and later will erase all stored supplemental map data when upgrading from earlier software versions.
  • WARNING: If this software is uploaded to a device other than that for which it is designed, you will not be able to operate that device.
  • If attempts to upload software fail, you may need to return the device to Garmin® for service.

 Change History  

Changes made from version 3.50 to 3.60:

  • Added Croation map datum.
  • Corrected an error when computing tides that would cause incorrect calculations for Canadian tide stations on the second day of the month.
  • Corrected potential error when using WAAS in Europe.
  • Corrected a problem with UPS grid conversions in zones B and Z.
  • Reduced size of BlueChart building symbol.
  • Fixed problem with potential shutdown when using very old Almanac data.
  • Corrected problem with Australian celestial moon phase calculations.
  • Changed symbol for non-dangerous rocks.
  • Changed text displayed for 'non-dangerous rock' to 'underwater rock' and changed 'submerged wreck, non-dangerous' to 'submerged wreck'.
  • Changed Austrian datum transformation parameters to dx = 594, dy = 84, & dz = 471.
  • Modified 'Place of Worship' and 'cemetery' symbols.

Changes made from version 3.40 to 3.50:

  • Fixed potential memory-corruption problem that could occur when tracking more than one WAAS satellite simultaneously.
  • Improvement to prevent delays when using differential GPS.
  • Added support for Canadian tides.

Changes made from version 3.30 to 3.40:

  • Fixed a problem that could cause the product to take much longer than expected to determine its internal temperature.

Changes made from version 3.20 to 3.30:

  • Added new translations for the French language.
  • Improved WAAS/EGNOS satellite selection algorithm to select the satellite with the most beneficial corrections given the unit's current position. A unit will not use a WAAS/EGNOS satellite if the unit's current position is outside of a given WAAS/EGNOS satellite's service volume.
  • Fixed a problem that caused the unit to incorrectly draw the time values on the Tide page when the unit was set to a 24-hour time format.
  • Fixed a problem with drawing names of maps on the Map Information page when the maps had long names.
  • Fixed a problem that caused the NMEA GPGSV sentence to not be compliant with the NMEA 0183 v3.01 Standard.

Changes made from version 3.10 to 3.20:

  • Corrected potential problem, introduced in software version 3.10, that could occur when closing the Software Version page.
  • The NMEA output of the GSV message now consists of up to three sequential GSV sentences that will be transmitted in each NMEA data burst.
  • The GPSMAP 162 will no longer output sounder-related NMEA sentences.
  • Fixed problem with occasional corrupted data display on some BlueChart point review pages.
  • Corrected data corruption problem on Light Sector review page that could occur if the reviewed Light has a large number of Sectors.

Changes made from version 3.05 to 3.10:

  • Implemented position Auto Averaging support.
  • Added support for Australian and European tides.
  • 'Track Log Full' message is now displayed when the Track Recording Mode is set to 'Fill' and there is no more space left to record track points.
  • Added support for extended (non-English language) character display on the map.
  • Added new metric version of Nautical units that underflows distance measurements to meters instead of feet.
  • Elevation units no longer overflow to a larger unit of measure when the value gets large. For example, if you are using Statute units and your elevation rolls over from 999 ft to 1000 ft, the unit will now display 1000 ft, rather than 1.0 kft.
  • Corrected problem on the Tide page where the Find position reference is always set to 'Other Position' when the Find key is pressed when the 'At' station field is highlighted. The reference is now based on the position of the station if a valid station has been selected.

Changes made from version 3.04 to 3.05:

  • Improved EPE calculations when using WAAS.
  • Adjusted how map drawing order is determined for maps with similar resolutions.
  • Improved sonar noise rejector some. Now less likely to reject weak signals when rejection isn't necessary.
  • Modified waypoint review page to display maximum depth when entered depth is greater than maximum allowed.
  • Corrected the case usage in map setup page.
  • Corrected blanking during sonar history rescaling.
  • Corrected possible invalid Go-From position on powerup.
  • Corrected the set year page so it forces the year to 2000 if year less than 2000 is entered.
  • Added ability to change 'Find From' position on nearest waypoint find page.
  • Fixed GPS page Signal-to-Noise Ratio update problem that occurred if the unit was receiving RTCM signal while the protocol was switched from RTCM to some other protocol not supporting RTCM.
  • Corrected drawing order when displaying both BlueCharts and Waterways & lights.
  • TracBack route renaming is no longer allowed.
  • Corrected problem that caused RTCM related value defaults to not be restored properly when system-wide or comm-specific defaults were restored.
  • Corrected ability to create waypoint when on Bluechart.
  • Changed 'Emergency & Governmental' and 'Marina/Boat Repair and Storage' find category strings to 'Emergency & Government' and 'Marina/Repair & Storage' respectively.
  • Modified spar buoy colors.

Changes made from version 3.03 to 3.04:

  • Fixed a problem that could cause the unit to lock up if 'Midnight' or 'Noon' options are selected when saving a track if the track memory is full and contains a single continuous track.
  • Fixed a problem where route lines were not being clipped properly on the edge of the screen when the route waypoints were close together.
  • Corrected a potential problem when adding the last available point to a route.
  • Improved behavior of the Anchor Drag Alarm in cases where the vessel moves out of the alarm radius and then back in.
  • Corrected time axis values on tide chart for stations with UTC offsets of +/- 10 hours or more.
  • Fixed problem where the approaching waypoint message was getting cleared too soon when distance based alarms were being used.
  • Do not display poor GPS coverage icon in sounder only mode.
  • Implemented new Advanced NMEA setup item for setting the Waypoint ID output format. This should allow for backwards compatibility with a wider range of NMEA driven products, including older AutoPilots.
  • Enhanced NMEA depth capability to support both DBT and DPT sentences.
  • Corrected problem with sonar column positions for sonar windows less than full screen width.
  • Fixed potential lockup problem on backlight and disclaimer pages.
  • Corrected error that could occur when deleting all waypoints.
  • Removed invalid hotel reservations telephone number.
  • Corrected an error where the map could be drawn incorrectly if leaving the map page in pointer mode and then returning to it.
  • When the sonar field is in pointer mode and the nav key is pushed, a 'Go To MAP Point' option is available.
  • Corrected a problem where adjusting the Sonar/Map split on the map page could affect the split on the sonar page.
  • Fixed possible highway page lockup problem.
  • Improved validation of the real-time clock.
  • Maps that don't have expiring unlocks are shown regardless of date and time.
  • Corrected the Danish translation for 'Back Light'.

Changes made from version 2.61 to 3.03:

  • Added support for GARMIN BlueChart™ cartography.
  • Changed the 'Diver Down' waypoint symbol to use the international symbol.
  • Changed the appearance of the 'poor coverage' symbol.
  • Changed 'Off Course' indicator to include R or L to indicate direction.
  • Changed map-based route editing to be consistent with other GARMIN marine products.
  • Changed 'Go to Point' operation to use generic Find interface as done in other GARMIN marine products. Also changed proximity waypoint selection, route waypoint selection and Celestial Page position selection to use this interface.
  • Changed to use tide station data from the internal map area in the product. This allows tide stations to be visible on the map, as well as allows future updates.
  • Allow individual classes of NMEA sentences to be disabled.
  • Added support for BWC, XTE, and VTG NMEA sentences.
  • Added support for BWC, XTE, and VTG NMEA sentences.
  • Added generation of 'Datum' NMEA sentence.
  • Changed 'Altitude' to 'Elevation'.
  • Added 'Point to on Map Page' option to map-based map feature review page.
  • Re-named map 'Bearing Line' to 'Heading Line'; Added a new map feature called 'Bearing Line' which is a line from the vessel to the next waypoint. Re-named 'Active Route' line to 'Course Line' to be consistent with other GARMIN marine products.
  • Pressing the 'Left' or 'Right' cursor keys in most lists now scrolls the list a page at a time.
  • No longer show 'Basic Fishfinder' as an option menu choice on the 'Pages' tab for GPSMAP162.
  • Reduced the amount of path smoothing done when saving tracks.
  • Corrected a track saving problem that could cause unit lock-up when the active track is full in wrap mode, after staying in the same location for the full track history.
  • Restore Celestial Page time & position to current time and current location at power-on.
  • Always update a waypoint's data upon return to the user waypoint review page. This corrects a problem where a waypoint's position, distance, and bearing was not updated after 'Show on Map' was selected and the waypoint was moved on the map.
  • Corrected a map drawing problem which caused country names to not be centered on their anchor point.
  • Go-From position is now properly remembered when the unit is turned off then on again.
  • Added a status indicator that appears at power-on and persists until position is determined.
  • Improve collection of WAAS data when tracking more than one WAAS satellite.
  • Update the map when transitioning to the next leg in a route.
  • Corrected Danish translation for the month of May.
  • Fixed possible lockup when calculating sun/moon rise and set times for extreme latitudes.
  • When editing a non-active route on the map, don't automatically initiate navigation of that route.
  • Added RT 90 Grid.

Changes made from version 2.60 to 2.61:

  • Corrected ę character in title font.
  • Improved Perspective Highway performance.
  • When a waypoint is moved using the map on the waypoint review page, the waypoint no longer disappears at high zoom levels.
  • Corrected ETE displays for extremely long ETE times.
  • Corrected display of negative UTC time offsets that are less than one hour.
  • Corrected some hilight movement / list scrolling issues on the exit services page.
  • Corrected highlight position 'remembering' when Configure Map / Configure Sonar menu items are selected.
  • Show the route name on the map route edit page.
  • Corrected the layering order for Fishing Hot Spots™ maps when combined with other uploadable map types.
  • Always draw the map boundaries for Fishing Hot Spots™ maps.
  • Don't review objects on the map that are obscured by a different map.
  • Corrected 'Nearest Waypoint' operation to work correctly in the presence of many near wayoints.

Changes made from version 2.52 to 2.60:

  • Added Fishing Hot Spots™ map support.
  • Improved map feature review support.
  • Added ability to review multiple map items.
  • Added WAAS support.
  • Map datum now automatically changes to the most appropriate datum when a new position format/grid is selected.
  • Corrected NAV key behavior on the Proximity Waypoint tab.
  • Changed to correctly handle waypoint display attributes from MapSource.
  • Allow small lakes, rivers, and parks to be reviewed on the map.

Changes made from version 2.50 to 2.52:

  • Fixed error that prevented disabling the Whiteline feature.

Changes made from version 2.13 to 2.50:

  • Incorporated use of multiple languages.
  • Corrected digital display of turn / mag var angles of 180.0 degrees.
  • Corrected problem with route point availability count data not being properly updated when a point is graphically deleted from a route.
  • Corrected Dutch grid conversion arithmetic by using a stereographic projection.
  • Added new Dutch datum for use while using the Dutch grid format.
  • Fixed Loran TD bug that caused a manually entered TD value to be incorrectly modified.
  • Reduced occurrences of premature arrival alarms.
  • Improved slow speed performance when selective availability (SA) is turned off or when differential data is available.
  • Incorporated accumulation of trip distance and time when shaded or in weak signal environments.
  • Updated magnetic variation tables based on the new IGRF 2000 model.

Changes made from version 2.12 to 2.13:

  • Added support for transferring waypoints, tracks, routes, and almanac between 162/168's.
  • Align map gridlines to the user's selected datum.
  • Correct reporting of maximum speed and improve track log recording when in shaded or weak signal environments.
  • Corrected track point position computations for extreme latitudes (+/- 90 degrees).
  • Changed large text map settings to use a larger font.

Changes made from version 2.11 to 2.12:

  • Changed time format to use short digits to indicate seconds.
  • Added NMEA IN capability.
  • Added Bearing Line Feature.
  • Added Course Up map orientation.
  • Added Lat/Lon Grid Line capability.
  • Allow negative user datum parameters.
  • Corrected tide station searches to not miss some stations.
  • Corrected time zone storage for 'Other' time zone.
  • Corrected application of North Offsets to displayed angles and the pointer.
  • Corrected factory default waypoint / tour route generation.
  • Always display route waypoints on the map when editing a route.
  • Apply local datum to all NMEA OUT positions.
  • Added GRMPHX to factory default waypoint list.
  • Topo elevation and depth contour units now always match selected depth units.
  • Improved the quality of the scrolling sonar image by improving whiteline thresholds and more consistently dealing with dynamic range changes.
  • Allowed digital depth to track a little shallower and corrected some problems which caused digital depths to be lost shallower than 6 feet.
  • Improved the auto noise rejecter to show more accurate sonar images in noisy conditions.
  • Increased the speed of transducer detection and made the unit get digital bottom lock faster.
  • Improved water temperature filtering.

Changes made from version 2.10 to 2.11:

  • Added support for User, Dutch, Finnish KKJ27 and Qatar National grid formats.
  • Added support for alternatively selecting a Waypoint from a map instead of the provided list.
  • Fixed bug with the highlight inappropriately moving to the By Name tab on the Waypoint page in the main menu when there are no Waypoints.
  • Added support for Depth units configuration on the GPSMAP 162.
  • Placed Language selection on System tab, but English is the only available selection at this time.
  • Proximity Waypoints can now be selected from a map.
  • Moved Land Cover to the Topo tab, and added Bearing Line setup to the Other tab in the Map tab on the main menu.
  • The Stop Navigation item is now disabled in the NAV key menu if there is no active navigation taking place.
  • Fixed problem with uploading some address and intersection information from the unit to MapSource.
  • Added appropriate Easting and Northing limits to some grid formats.
  • Fixed problem where no NMEA data would be output before the unit had a satellite fix.
  • Changed map's GOTO line appearance so that the initial position is fixed at where the GOTO was started from, instead of floating at the current position.
  • Added improvements to ETE processing.
  • Only restore default Waypoints and Tour Route on a complete system data clear.
  • Improved moonrise and moonset time calculations, including the correction of some computational errors for eastern Asia longitudes.

Changes made from version 2.01 to 2.10:

  • Added support for GPSMAP 168 Sounder.
  • Added support for serial transfer of proximity waypoints.
  • Corrected NMEA GPRTE sentence.
  • Improved Proximity Waypoint Sorting.

Changes made from version 2.00 to 2.01:

  • Corrected sorting problem with auto-named routes.

 Instructions for using this software  

  1. It is recommended that you disable screen savers or other programs running on your PC while you go through the update process. Disruptions to the update process may render your GPS inoperable. If the transfer is interrupted, turn off the GPS and then turn it back on. Reboot your PC, go to step #9 and attempt the download again. GARMIN is not responsible for failed downloads of operating software to the GPS and factory resetting the GPS unit will fall under our Flat Rate Repair Policy.
  2. Click on "Download" and choose to save the file to your computer.
  3. Choose a location where you can easily locate the file by saving it to a location such as the "My Documents" folder or to "C:\".
  4. Once the download is complete, go to the location where you saved the file.
  5. Locate the downloaded file and double-click on it. This will launch the Win-Zip Self Extractor. This program compresses the data to allow for a faster download of the needed files.
  6. A program window will appear asking you where to "Un-zip" the files. This is by default C:\Garmin. You can change this location if you like. Be sure to note where the un-zipped files are going to allow you to find them!
  7. Click on the button labeled "Un-zip".
  8. Once the un-zip process is complete, click on the "Close" button to exit the Win-Zip Self Extractor.
  9. Open the C:\Garmin (or other folder where you un-zipped the files), locate the file named "Updater" and double click on it.
  10. Connect your GPS to your computer using a GARMIN PC Interface cable to an open serial port. Turn the GPS on, place it in Simulator mode (refer to your owner's manual for instructions) and verify that the Interface Mode (found under the Main Menu page, refer to your owner's manual for instructions) is set to GARMIN, GRMN, GRMN/GRMN, or Data Transfer/Host mode.
  11. Click on the "OK" button on the Updater program window to start the data transfer.

 System requirements

  1. IBM-compatible PC running Windows 98, Windows ME, Windows 2000, Windows NT 4.0, or Windows XP operating system and an available Com 1, 2, 3, or 4 port.
  2. PC Interface Cable for your GPS unit. The PC Interface Cable may be purchased through your local Garmin distributor or ordered direct from our Online Store.



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