The NMEA 2000 protocol is a plug-and-play communications standard used for connecting marine sensors and display units within ships and boats.
Many Victron Energy products can be integrated into an NMEA 2000 network. On this page, you will find an overview, as well as links to all the detailed information.
Victron Energy is a member of the NMEA 2000 organisation, and we have several of our products certified by NMEA 2000.
For brevity, this document will refer to NMEA 2000 as N2K.
1. How to connect to a NMEA 2000 network
1.1 Multis, MultiPlusses and Quattros
Combining with a Color Control GX
Monitoring and controlling these products from both to a N2K network and a Color Control GX is possible. In that case, do not connect the Color Control GX to the VE.Bus network. Instead, connect it also to the N2K network. Use our VE.Can to NMEA2000 cable for that. The CCGX will read the MultiPlus or Quattro information from the via the N2K network.
Schematic diagram of combining a CCGX with NMEA 2000:
In above example, there needs to be a fuse in the VE.Can to NMEA2000 cable. Without it, the VE.Can port in the CCGX will be left without power and therefore does not work.
When the Multis/Quattros are connected to the CCGX via a VE.Bus to NMEA 2000 interface, there are some limitations compared to the normal direct connection. These limitations are:
Incompatible with Hub-4 and ESS Assistant, for Energy Storage Systems
Listing the VE.Bus installed Assistants on the CCGX / VRM Portal does not work
Alarm information per phase does not work (generic alarm information still works)
Forwarding charge-current information of MPPTs to the VE.Bus system does not work. Solution: always install a BMV, which is needed anyway in a Marine installation.
Setting On/Off/Charger-only and a current limit from the CCGX does work. As does Remote VEConfigure.
1.2 BMV Battery Monitors
1.3 VE.Can products (Skylla-i, Skylla-IP44, Lynx Shunt, Lynx Ion+Shunt and more)
Since the Victron VE.Can communication protocol is based on N2K, the following products can all be connected directly to a N2K network. The only thing necessary is a plug converter: the VE.Can to NMEA 2000 cable.
Skylla-i 24V Battery Chargers
Skylla IP44 Battery Chargers
Lynx Shunt Battery Monitors
Lynx Ion + Shunt all models
BlueSolar MPPT Solar Chargers with VE.Can communications port
2. MFD integration
Using the NMEA 2000 protocol, Victron equipment can be integrated in many multi function displays. Such as the ones from Maretron, Raymarine, Garmin and many other brands
Note: working on a very large yacht featuring custom Scada and PLC networks? Consider integrating the Victron system with ModbusTCPinstead of NMEA 2000.
2.1 Raymarine & EmpirBus
Integration onto Raymarine MFDs is always done with an Empirbus NXT MCU . Though both connected to the same N2K network, the NXT MCU translates the N2K PGNs originating from the Victron equipment into Raymarine proprietary messages.
In the EmpirBus Studio software you will find dedicated Victron building blocks than can be drawn onto the diagram.
Next, use the EmpirBus Graphical tool to design the pages for on the Raymarine MFDs.
The EmpirBus system requires the data instance of battery status and dc detailed status to be unique when using multiple sources. (how to change data instances)
3. PGN overview
4. Color Control GX & NMEA 2000
Q1: What about instances? Device instances, data instances?
Q2: Can MPPT Solar Chargers with a VE.Direct port also be connected?
Q3: What about terminators and network layout?
A N2K canbus network needs to be laid out as in backbone configuration, using drop cables to connect to each device. Also there should be only two terminators in the network. Therefore:
Use the NMEA2000 cable as the back bone.
Run a separate drop cable separately to each Victron device. The drop cable will be one of these three products:
Only terminate the NMEA 2000 backbone, do not terminate on the VE.Can side.
Q4: What PGNs does the Color Control GX transmit on N2K?
Nothing. At the moment the CCGX only reads data from the NMEA 2000 network. The data it can read is:
Q5: Can integration onto Raymarine displays also be done without Empirbus NXT?
Q6: What about Maretron and other brand tanksensors on the Ccgx?