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#11431341 - 02/22/16 03:35 PM Lowrance HDS and GoFree app
ABit Offline

Registered: 10/24/15
Posts: 111
Loc: Corpus Christi, TX
I remember when the Samsung Galaxy first came out with smart scroll. I remember thinking how cool that would be and about a week after buying the phone, I turned the feature and never used it again. Which leads me to my question.

So I am doing the research needed to justify spending several thousand dollars to upgrade my electronics. I was looking into the HDS gen3 and starting looking into the gofree app capabilities. As cool as that sounds, are any of you actually running your systems with a tablet mounted anywhere?

I was thinking it would be nice to mount a tablet at the bow and be able to see what the fish finder in the dash shows. Just curious to see if it's a cool feature that doesn't get used or if it's actually worth the hype.
2012 Nitro Z8 - Mercury 200
Everything I know about fishing I learned from TFF.

#11432696 - 02/23/16 07:55 AM Re: Lowrance HDS and GoFree app [Re: ABit]
jfdawson Offline
Pro Angler

Registered: 06/21/05
Posts: 841
Loc: Frisco, Texas
I can't comment on your exact question, but I believe most Lowrance guys run 2 HDS units; one at the bow and one at the console. They are networked. I'm running a HDI transducer on the trolling motor and 2d/LSS2 at the transom. Because they are networked, I'm able to simply touch a button and see what any of my transducers are reading.

I would think those running a tablet/iPad up front would work but you'd need to get a special mount and waterproof case.

#11433143 - 02/23/16 11:04 AM Re: Lowrance HDS and GoFree app [Re: ABit]
MAK747 Offline

Registered: 05/08/09
Posts: 290
Loc: Ft Wth
I don't have the WIFI option on my units so I don't have any direct knowledge in using it. However I have read several posts from people that have tried it and there seems to be a few items that come up repeatedly regarding using the tablet.

1. Need a waterproof case if there is a chance of tablet getting wet.

2. Need a way to charge the tablet if you use it for an extended period of time. This usually means removing it from the case to attach charger.

3. A watertight case also usually implies an airtight case which can hamper air circulation. If used in the Texas heat it can lead to overheating of the Tablet.

4. Depending on the case, and the angle that the tablet is mounted, there can be issue seeing the screen in bright sunlight. I have seen some people say this is a major issue and others state they have no problem with it.

The HDS-3 comes with the WIFI built in and the App is free, so if you already have a tablet, for no extra cost you can play with it at home and draw your own conclusions.

#11436378 - 02/24/16 01:02 PM Re: Lowrance HDS and GoFree app [Re: ABit]
ABit Offline

Registered: 10/24/15
Posts: 111
Loc: Corpus Christi, TX
Those are some pretty good points that I hadn't thought about. I guess if my units are networked it would be pointless to add a tablet to the set up.
2012 Nitro Z8 - Mercury 200
Everything I know about fishing I learned from TFF.

#11436468 - 02/24/16 01:39 PM Re: Lowrance HDS and GoFree app [Re: ABit]
Flippin-Out Offline
Extreme Angler

Registered: 02/25/15
Posts: 1562
Loc: Magnolia, TX
It is not worth the hype for small-boat fishermen in my opinion. If you consider your tablet eventually disposable from heat damage, corrosion, and other abuse/hard use, then go right ahead! Display brightness can be an issue in a bright environment (outdoor open cockpit on a small boat).

I think the WiFi is more applicable with a BIG boat - as in one with an enclosed cockpit and/or cabins/lounges with a captain and crew. A captain who steps away from the bridge for off-shift time can still keep tabs on what is going on at the helm from his cabin, etc.

Many of us have two or even three displays on our "little boats" that are often larger than the tablet would be. Exactly how many screens are needed? You can be sensible, or you and your money can be parted a little bit sooner......all your choice in the end.


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