Author Topic: Fish Finder (Decent and Affordable)  (Read 9484 times)

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Offline OneBlade

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Fish Finder (Decent and Affordable)
« on: January 01, 2011, 03:16 PM »
Hey, I'm looking to get a fish finder.  I'd like to know what I should look for when buying one.  I sort of hoped that $150 to $300 would be my price range, but I got those numbers out of a hat and don't know if they're reasonable.  Sure, I can find one that price but want one that will last a long time and be useful.  For features, I want a good sized screen, GPS, quality view of the bottom and of any structures (e.g. trees, branches, etc.), etc.  When I looked at them at Bass Pro Shop, it seems liked to get color screen, I have to pay $150 more, maybe more.  Also, does output power matter?  I saw a Hummingbird 365i, which has a 4" diagonal screen (I think this is maybe too small?).  It has 2400 PTP power and DualBeam sonar, whatever that means.  Any suggestions on what specifications really matter including any specific model recommendations would be appreciated.  Also, does color provide me anything except better to see in daylight and cool?

Offline PhishingPhreek

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Re: Fish Finder (Decent and Affordable)
« Reply #1 on: January 01, 2011, 05:44 PM »
I've only stuck with the standard Lowrance FFs in the past. Mostly because they're fairly simple and complex. I've wanted to get a pretty bad ass one though since I got into crappie fishing.

Bill (Fish Hawk) bought a sweet set up he was showing me up at SCF last year.  I know he did a lot of research for that before buying one. I wish I could remember what exact model he bought. In fact, I can't even find any of the posts he made about it. Hopefully he'll chime in.

Offline AzFishingGuy

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Re: Fish Finder (Decent and Affordable)
« Reply #2 on: January 01, 2011, 07:55 PM »
The new hummingbird units that are coming soon will have the features that you list.They might be a little more than you want to spend. They are making new ones to be more competitive Price with lowrance units


Piscolli

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Re: Fish Finder (Decent and Affordable)
« Reply #3 on: January 01, 2011, 10:13 PM »
Lowrance has a new struction scan only model in the new Bass Pro cataloge for $299 that looks really sweet.

Offline Fish Hawk

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Re: Fish Finder (Decent and Affordable)
« Reply #4 on: January 02, 2011, 07:19 AM »
If I was going to buy a unit between $150-300 I would go with the Humminbird  700 series the 718 is $200 the 718 is $300. alot of bang for the buck

Offline menrats

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Re: Fish Finder (Decent and Affordable)
« Reply #5 on: January 03, 2011, 06:17 AM »
as a trolling fisherman basically trolling an area im not sure what good side or structure scanning does. the reg finders still show fish and stucture and since were not target casting i havent been to keen and spending the big bucks. i would like the gps unit though but havent pulled that string either. looks like i need a vro pump for my next 5bills, then a new cover , then new seats, then new carpet. the list seems to go on and on.

Offline OneBlade

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Re: Fish Finder (Decent and Affordable)
« Reply #6 on: February 26, 2011, 06:18 AM »
Well, I'm back on this topic again. Art mentioned how important it is having a way to mark precise locations.  I mentioned how everyone was using some guy's orange buoy as a reference point the other day on San Carlos and he said "exactly, everyone!"  It seems critical to have a GPS so you can mark your own points without the whole flotilla using them.  Not that I don't mind sharing my secrets but perhaps not so immediately like a buoy marker does.  So, FishHawk says the Hummingbird 718 may be a good option.  Cost is $200 but assume I add on $100 for local maps, right?  Power is 2400watts. Can I assume that the power output can be used as an indicator to how well it reads everything below?  So, I don't get color with this version, that's o.k.  I don't think GPS is included either.  I suppose it varies, but I wonder if most people get GPS in their fish finder or just have a separate unit? 

Piscolli mentioned a structure scan model was in the catalog for $299.  Can someone describe what "side or structure scanning" is and provides other than standard fish finder stuff?

Also, if anyone has recommendations on cheap but quality portable GPS units, please reply here or IM me.  Thanks.


Piscolli

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Re: Fish Finder (Decent and Affordable)
« Reply #7 on: February 26, 2011, 07:34 AM »
Bass Pro now has the Eagle 480 (no color) with GPS for $209! Jump on one before they are gone.

I personally have not been using GPS (until recently they cost too much) and have done pretty well without it. But I would like to upgrade soon. Remember that first you have to find the active fish.

Offline TRITOON

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Re: Fish Finder (Decent and Affordable)
« Reply #8 on: February 26, 2011, 08:30 AM »
Great questions   I am interested in the answers and all the good advice that will be shared.  Thanks for asking them.
GOD BLESS

Offline Fishless

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Re: Fish Finder (Decent and Affordable)
« Reply #9 on: February 26, 2011, 04:12 PM »
output watts are important for the graph reading at depth and pixels are important to show good definition and ability to see in daylight, want to get color graph with GPS, I take my hand held GPS with me and (Billy E.) witnessed what I do when I don't like what it says!! actually bumped it in the lake in 30' of water  :crybaby2: :wtf:thankfull had the waypoints saved in computer. with built in GPS can mark points for trolling and save trees and structure where you find crappie.
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