Now a days finding that great spot takes patience and the right conditions, but are the fish actually there or are you wasting your time? If these are questions your asking yourself then it may be time to invest the right equipment, and yes we are talking about a fish finder. There are many out there and prices can range from two hundred all the way to four thousand depending the what bells and whistles you want to have. But are you getting the right deal or are you over paying for features you will never use in your life. Oh yeah, there is also side and down viewing. Sounds so confusing right, but don’t sweat it because we are going to break it down by brands, models, boat/finder combo’s and a few other things you need to know before you spend the money on what may be the most used piece of equipment in your boat.
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What Are The Top Fish & Depth Finder Brands
The first names that come to mind are Hummingbird, Lowrance, and Garmin. These are what we would assume to be the biggest players in the fish and depth finder market. But sometimes that doesn’t mean they have the best one that fits your budget as well as needs. We would say that the best bang for your buck may come from your Hummingbird models. Hummingbird which is a subsidiary of Johnson outdoors make a pretty decent fish finder. On one of our aluminum boats we use a basic hummingbird 143 and on the other is a HDS9 Lowrance. Personally we have outfitted each boat with what we think is the best piece of equipment to get the best out of every situating. Brands can be tough to pick apart but what we recommend doing is to look at a few things to narrow down your brand search. The first couple things to always look for is the build quality of the equipment, which can usually be measured by the warranty the company issues for all of there products. The other thing we like is to look at is misleading marketing of features you will never use. We like companies that tell it the way it is and not offer more than what you really need.
If you are looking to buy a fishing boat and the bright text says free fish finder chances are this is the one you are going to be getting. This is what we think is the Merc of fish finders, they offer what you need for a great price. This isn’t by all means the best of the best but for a under 100$ price tag it sure is. A few features/specs of the Hummingbird PiranhaMax 143 include the following:
- Screen Size – 4inches
- Max Depth of 600ft
- 2d Imaging with Backlight
Great to have on the dash of any boat this models also features great tilt and swivel action, making it perfect to face the back or the front of the boat wherever you are standing.
Tournament fisher, semi pro, or pro hobby angler this may the nicest and most feature packed fish finder on the market. With Lowrance you can always find great value as well as a great product, having said that this fish finder tops its list. Basic Features and specs of this unit include the following:
- 9 inch screen size
- High definition screen resolution
- 2D structure and down scan overlay scanning
- 5000 waypoint storage
- 5000ft max depth
- (50/200 or 83/ 200 kHz) + 455/800 kHz sonar frequency
Most reviewers including ourselves are finding that the best feature of this fish finder is of course it 9 inch display. Bright, bold and in high definition this fish finder gives you crisp and timeless response. perfect for seizing the moment and getting the best out of your fishing experience.
With Garmine looking to grow its line of marine product they spice up the fish finder market with the echoMap 43dv fish finder with LakeVu Mapping. The best part of this product is the seamless mapping and depth views from its crisp 4.3 inch screen. Below are a few basic features and specs you need to know
- 4.3 inch screen size
- Transome mount/ Trolling motor transducer.(transducer comes with the echoMap 44dv)
- Internal GPS antenna
- 2,300ft freshwater depth and 1,100 ft bluewater(saltwater)
A personal experience we enjoyed with the Garmin corporation is there great customer service. They were very straight forward in giving us a great customer experience by answer all our question on point. This is a product we would also like to recommend our readers to look at.
Having a fish finder on board can save you a lot of meaningless fishing in the long run. By getting the depths you need and actually marking, you can speed up the process of landing those monster fish. Where there are baitfish there are most likely the big units, don’t be alarmed if that’s all you see on your finder, the big one is yet to come.