Multifunction display OBP 60

Display in action

open boat projects LIVE:
Video presentation in German on the OBP 60 multifunctional display (45min presentation, 30min discussion)

After we have dealt with the M5Stack as a multifunction display in 2019 and could show and were able to show some applications at Boot 2020, we are taking a new approach to a new multifunction display here. The M5Stack was not bad, but was subject to certain limitations for which some marine applications were not possible.

The disadvantages of the M5Stack include:

  • Display that is too small and not suitable for sunlight
  • Only 3 control buttons
  • Not waterproof
  • Too low battery power for standalone applications

However, some useful applications could be implemented:

The M5Stack is very flexible to use and well documented, but could not convince in the large number of marine applications. Following the widely used and popular ST60 series of instruments from Raymarine, a new attempt was made to build a more suitable multifunction display. In terms of housing dimensions, the new multifunction display is identical to the ST60 device series. Thus, the multifunction display can serve as a direct replacement for old and defective devices. By supporting old bus systems like NMEA0183 and SeaTalk, a bridge to the new world with NMEA2000 is provided, so that older systems can still be operated. The WLAN capability also allows to go completely new ways in signal transmission with connection e.g. to SignalK. Commercially there is a good selection of multifunction displays, but they are very limited in terms of expandability and adaptability to individual needs. You can only do things with the multifunction display for which the manufacturer has provided functions. Unfortunately, nothing can be modified or extended by the user. The goal of the whole development should be an open system where the user has access to all functions of the multifunctional display and can implement his own ideas by adapting the software and additional hardware. The standard electronics is designed in such a way that in the future it will be possible to replace it by other housings of other device series. Thus, maximum flexibility and openness is given.

Currently, the project is still in development.

In the design of the new display, emphasis was placed on the following points:

  • Standard size for a multifunctional display (110 x 110 mm)
  • Suitable for daylight
  • Waterproof
  • 6 keys
  • Support of the following bus systems:
    • NMEA0183
    • NMEA2000
    • SeaTalk
    • I2C
    • 1Wire
  • Low power consumption
  • WiFi-capable
  • Bluetooth-capable
  • Expandability via I2C bus and 1Wire
  • Hardware extensions via I / O port
  • Autarkic usable with battery pack for several days
  • Standard electronics for compatibility with other device series (NASA, Clipper, Navman, etc...)
  • Freely designable housing and therefore adaptable to other device series
  • Openness (OpenSource, OpenHardware)
  • Rebuildability with hobby means due to simple construction
  • Use of ready-made electronic modules
  • Adaptability to different needs
  • Software library for the Arduino IDE (similar to M5Stack)
  • Software updates via Micro-USB and WLAN

Video of the construction of the multifunctional display

Video to PCB

Specifically, the multifunction display was implemented with the following components and the following specification:

  • NodeMCU-32S as CPU unit
  • E-Ink display (400 x 300 pixels, 4.2″, suitable for daylight)
  • SeaTalk (full duplex)
  • NMEA 0183 (RX or TX, configurable)
  • SeaTalk (full duplex)
  • I2C
  • 1Wire
  • 8x I / O expansion port (internal)
  • 6x touch keys (swipe capable)
  • 2x digital out (12V, 4A)
  • 2x digital in (12V)
  • 2x Analog In (tank sensor 0...180 Ohm, battery etc.)
  • Battery monitor (12V voltage measurement)
  • Acoustic signal generator
  • Optical signal generator (red LED)
  • LED display illumination (RGB, color free selectable, dimmable)
  • BME280 (temperature, air pressure, humidity)
  • GPS receiver
  • WiFi 2.4GHz (HTTP, TCP, UDP)
  • Bluetooth
  • Connectors for optional LiPo battery pack
  • Expansion ports I2C, 5V 2A

The board is equipped with various SMD components and will therefore no longer be solderable without further ado. Some electronic modules can be assembled individually ( E-Ink-Display, NodeMCU-32S, BME280, GPS) The board will be offered for sale later fully assembled without electronic modules.

In principle, the following things could be realized with the multifunction display:

  • Instrument display via NMEA2000, NMEA0183, SeaTalk, WiFi
  • SignalK connection
  • Weather display with weather history (BME280)
  • GPS display
  • Current position display in sea chart (with internet connection via OpenSeaMap)
  • Wind display (true wind)
  • Simple GPS autopilot (with DC motor as actuator)
  • Anchor watch
  • Battery monitor (with I2C current sensor also charge monitor)
  • Solar monitor (with I2C current sensor)
  • Motor diagnostics (temperature, speed)
  • Speedometer (with common pulse sensor)
  • Gateway between NMEA2000, NMEA0183 and SeaTalk
  • Export of all sensor data via WLAN for tablets
  • AIS display graphically (with AIS receiver)
  • Info display for email, messenger services
  • Display for clock (UTC, local time), date, sunrise and sunset
  • Sailing timer (distance and time to start line)
  • Watch timer
  • Next Treckpoint indicator with XTR and audible alarm
  • Tank level indicator
  • Bilge monitoring with pump control
  • Alarm system with notification via WLAN including GPS tracker
  • Weather forecast (with internet connection)
  • Boat automation (with Sonoff components)
  • Reception of commands from a Bluetooth remote control with
  • Receiving Bluetooth wind sensor signals from Raymarine (if the signals can be decoded)
  • Control of audio media players (DLNA)
  • Firmware update via WiFi
  • and, and, and ....

To realize the possible applications, however, software is required that still has to be programmed and transferred to the multifunction display in the form of firmware. However, the firmware will not be able to realize all functions at the same time. Depending on the application, you can load a suitable firmware onto the device via USB or WLAN connection and then use it to implement one or more functions. We hope that the multifunction display will find great interest and that some will participate in the software development.

Multifunction display with loaded sea chart

Allen countersunk screws as touch keys

Viton gasket for moisture protection

Raymarine standard fasteners

End seal against cockpit wall with 2mm thick mos rubber

Total thickness corresponds to the original

3D printing process

3D front housing


Front case with E-Ink display

Back side circuit board

Front board with sister board for display illumination

Illuminated E-Ink display

Electronics board front

Electronics board rear (incompletely equipped)

Electronics in the front frame