The recent club email discussing MMSI numbers mentioned connecting a chartplotter to a DSC radio to provide GPS data. Without this GPS data your DSC radio is not going to provide position data when the distress button is pressed, which in my opinion is the primary benefit of having DSC. If you have a chartplotter, make the connection to your radio.
With the growing popularity of tablets being used for chartplotters, getting that GPS data can be an issue. On Cenoté we use an Android tablet running Jeppesen Plan2Nav.
To get the GPS data to the radio I installed a unit like this. Garmin 19x
The Garmin 19x installation was easy. Wiring was just a matter of matching the wires from one connector to the other and soldering it up. There are also NMEA 2000 versions available.
Keep this in mind if you don’t have a chartplotter. Without GPS data your DSC radio is nothing more than a fancy radio.