Stay Proficient Using Your Garmin® GPSMAP® in the Air ... By Using it With Your Favorite Flight Simulation When You’re On the Ground

Unless you fly regularly, it’s difficult to stay proficient using your portable GPS. Sure, the Garmin® GPSMAP® 196, 296, 396, or 496 includes a Simulator Mode so you can practice using the receiver’s functions. Yet there’s a big difference between practicing with a GPS on the ground and using one while actually flying.

For almost three decades, tech-savvy pilots have known that one of the best tools for keeping your head in the flying game (no matter how long it’s been since you’ve been in an airplane) is Microsoft® Flight Simulator. Today, Flight Simulator X and its commercial descendant Lockheed Martin® Prepar3D™ provide pilots with a realistic, comprehensive simulation of the entire flying experience.

With the ability to simulate VFR and IFR flights between any airports in the world ... with the ability to “fly” the aircraft of your choice over realistic terrain, through realistic weather, in any season, at any time of day or night ... there’s no longer any good excuse for not staying proficient.

But what if the GPS you use when you fly for real is a portable Garmin GPSMAP? While there have been many good renditions of panel-mounted GPS units and glass cockpit avionics for FSX and Prepar3D, there’s never been a way to simulate flying with a realistic portable Garmin GPSMAP ... until now.

The Simple Interface that Changes Everything

SimLink96 from Flight1 Aviation Technologies provides you with the most realistic simulated Garmin GPSMAP operating experience ever available. It’s not a GPS simulator though. It’s a stand-alone application that serves as an interface between your real GPSMAP 196, 296, 396, or 496 and FSX or Prepar3D.

SimLink96 passes the aircraft’s latitude, longitude, altitude, heading, and groundspeed from the flight simulation to your Garmin GPSMAP, in real time. With SimLink96 and a special cable, you can use your GPSMAP with the flight simulation just as you would use it in a real airplane.


Using your Garmin GPSMAP with FSX or Prepar3D is easy:

  1. Plug the serial connector on a Garmin PC Interface Cable into the serial port (or USB adapter) on your PC.
  2. Plug the 4-pin connector on the Garmin PC Interface Cable into the back of your GPSMAP unit.
  3. Power on your GPSMAP and start Simulator Mode.
  4. Launch the flight simulation … and fly!

SimLink96 sits quietly in the background passing data.

What You’ll Be Able to Do

Once the connection is made, you’ll be able to:

  • Practice operating your GPSMAP using the buttons and Rocker Keypad while you are aviating, navigating, and communicating within the simulated world.
  • Master using your GPSMAP during VFR and IFR flights between any airports anywhere in the world, in any season, in any weather conditions, at any time of day or night.
  • Learn to use features you might never have the opportunity to explore during a real flight in a real airplane.
  • Build proficiency flying unfamiliar routes and procedures by “pre-flying” them using the flight simulation and your GPSMAP.
  • Practice using your GPSMAP to perform route modifications and other potentially distracting tasks.
  • Train using scenarios you could otherwise only complete in a real airplane (or via “chair flying” using your imagination).

What You’ll Need

To use the SimLink96 software, you’ll also need:

  • A Garmin GPSMAP 196, 296, 396, or 496 portable aviation receiver
  • A Garmin PC Interface Cable:
    • The GPSMAP 296, 396, and 496 require the Garmin 010-10514-00 PC Interface Cable (RS232 Serial Port Connector). Availability of these cables is somewhat limited but an internet seach should provide some dealers with the cable.
    • The Garmin GPSMAP 196 requires the Garmin 010-10141-00 PC Interface Cable (RS232 Serial Port Connector)
  • A PC with an available serial port.  (If your PC does not feature a serial port, you’ll need to purchase a USB RS232 Converter Cable, or purchase and install a serial port card.)
  • Microsoft Flight Simulator X or Lockheed Martin Prepar3D.


Get Connected

By connecting your GPSMAP to FSX or Prepar3D you can go far beyond what the Garmin Simulator Mode provides on its own. You can practice using your GPS in the same cognitive environment in which you’ll actually use it: while flying an airplane. Yet because the airplane is a simulated one, you’ll save time and money.

With more than 15 years of industry experience, Flight1 is one of the most respected third-party solution providers for Microsoft's simulations. We use the depth and breadth of our knowledge to create products that push the limits of what can be done with PC-based simulation for both entertainment and flight training.

We’re excited about the ways people are using our products, and we’d love to hear about your success using SimLink96.

Ready to get connected?

Download SimLink96 today:



$49.95 (Does not include Flight Simulator X or Prepar3D)



We welcome the opportunity to help you learn more about our products. If you have questions before purchasing SimLink96, please contact us via our support ticket system.

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Price: $49.95

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