I had a coffee snort experience due to an emergency DSC transmission this trip. It happens so rarely that it always takes a while to figure out what is going on and I stab at the buttons until the alarm goes off.
I think the implementation by the manufacturers could be improved. I think it is a valuable feature however.
I have rarely used DSC to contact another boat. I don't even remember how it is done. I would need to review the manual. I think that if I was buddy boating, it would be a nice feature as it would make it quick and East to contact them.
This trip were where being shadowed by two boats "Cheshire Cat" and "Jamie". There were obviously traveling together and were calling each other back and forth a LOT. Their radio technique was immaculate, but we must have heard this every 30 minutes for days on end while they were under way.
'CHESHIRE CAT", "CHESHIRE CAT", "CHESHIRE CAT", this is "JAMIE", "JAMIE", "JAMIE", over.
"CHESHIRE CAT" this is "JAMIE", over
This got very, very tiresome after a week and a half. Nothing that they did wrong but channel 16 is busy enough in this water this time of year. How much better if they had used DSC to keep all the hailing off of channel 16?