Best Fish Finders
To save you the shopping hassle, we have compiled a list of our top five fish finders that all boast of excellent features.
The Garmin ECHOMAP 93sv is a high-end fish finder that comes with a super-crisp 9’’ LCD touch display with hard button assist. It includes a powerful GT54 transducer that boasts of excellent CHIRP and side view canning sonar and comes built-in with data covering over 17,000 lakes in the U.S. It also comes with a quick-release bail mount and boasts of excellent compatibility with other technologies you won’t find in regular fish finders.
- Excellent image quality and easy controls.
- Comes with pre-loaded lake data.
- Excellent compatibility with other high-end technologies.
The Humminbird 410210-1 Helix 5 comes with a 5’’ rich color display and intuitive control buttons. It includes a dual-beam CHIRP transducer that great side and down imaging performance and delivers 500W of transmitting power. It also comes with built-in GPS functions like chart plotting, pre-loaded maps, and a micro SD card slot to save plot data.
- Excellent image delivery.
- Impressive transmitting power.
- Comes with GPS functions.
The Lawrence HOOK2 comes with a 4’’ digital display and boasts of easy-to-use controls. It comes with a bullet skimmer transducer that generates 2D images and delivers a wide-angle view cone ideal for shallow waters and also includes GPS functions. The finder itself is very easy to mount and is IPX7 waterproof while its transducer can be mounted thru-hull, on the transom, on the trolling motor, or through a scupper hole.
- Great for small to mid-sized boats.
- Very affordable.
- Very convenient to mount.
The Garmin Striker Plus 4 is a top-notch fish finder that comes with a crisp 4.3’’ display and an easy-to-use interface. It comes with a dual-beam CHIRP transducer, built-in GPS functions, and packs 200W of sonar power. It also sports a rugged build, allows you to customize maps, and is IPX7 waterproof.
- Crisp image quality.
- Impressive transmission power.
- Very durable.
The HawkEye Fishtrax 1C comes in a host of models suited to both newbie and experienced who are on a budget. It sports a sleek design, bright LCD display, and includes a Fishtrax intelligent sonar. It comes with a host of intelligent features, is easy to integrate with other gadgets, while its sonar sensor is easy to mount.
- Very affordable.
- Great for anglers of all experience levels.
- Easy to integrate and mount.
Fish Finders Buying Guide
While old-school anglers may be somewhat biased against this technology, there is no doubt that the fish finder is a useful tool for both newbie and experienced anglers. They ensure a perfect score every time and remove the angler’s reliance on instincts to find fish.
Our buying guide reviews the best fish finders on the market based on their specified features and tested performance to give you the best options to choose from. We then take it a step further to outline the particular factors you should consider and qualities you should look out for in a fish finder before you make a purchase.
The display specifications of your fish finder is one of the most important factors to consider. The display type, image resolution, and display size play an important role in determining how easy it is to locate fish. Fishfinders come with either Black and White displays or colored/digital displays. Most fish finders tilt towards digital displays and are likely what you’ll find. The image resolution measured in pixels places a measure on the image quality. The higher the image resolution, the better. The display size is also another important factor to consider. The larger the screen, the easier it will be to see the image, but the pricier the fish finder will get. It should also not be too small that you have to strain your eyes.
While a few fish finders may not come with a transducer, most will. The important transducer specifications to consider include the power, frequency, mount type, and whether it is suited to freshwater or saltwater conditions.
The power of the transducer places a measure on how much sound energy is sent out and will determine how much detail you get from the received image. For very small boats power ratings between 200 W and 500 W are ideal. Larger boats will require higher transducer powers dipping into the order of Kilowatts. The frequency specifications of the transducer is another important factor to consider. Lower frequencies allow for deeper penetration, a wider field of view, but lesser detail. Higher frequencies are better for more shallow water, a more focused field of view, and yield excellent detail. The ideal fish finder transducer should emit CHIRP signals at multiple frequencies at once for the best performance.
Extra Features; Compatibility
If you want to buy a separate transducer for your fish finder, you should ensure that it is compatible with your device. Another great feature to look out for in a fish finder is GPS. With the GPS function, you can seamlessly merge the two technologies to locate a fishing hot-spot and find your way back with chart-plotting. The mount type of your fish finder is another important factor to consider. It should come with a universal mount that can easily be attached to your boat in a convenient viewing position without wobbling but should also be easy to relocate when needed.