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#11531073 - 04/09/16 10:07 AM Electronics for Stripers
FishWrangler2 Offline

Registered: 03/31/16
Posts: 128
Howdy folks,

I'm contemplating on making an investment in a new GPS/Depth finder system but I am fairly contrained by my budget of around $500. Thus, I wanted to get some of your insights on what is "razzle dazzle" versus what is "absolutely necessary" in making my purchase. I've mainly been looking at Lowrance models (specifically the Hook series) but am opening to considering others. The biggest contributor I see in price point jumps are between the "side scan" and more traditional models. I know that "side scan" is definitely a premium feature but wanted to get a feel for how much it really helps. At the end of the day, maybe it doesn't really matter that much because if you're in the place where the fish are, then traditional models are sufficient.

One other feature I'd like, if possible, is the ability to connect with a mobile device. How practical of a use is this to you? The primary advantage that I can tell is that you can essentially have a bigger display without having to pay up.

Thank you for any guidance that you can provide!

#11531281 - 04/09/16 02:09 PM Re: Electronics for Stripers [Re: FishWrangler2]
Bob Landry Offline
Extreme Angler

Registered: 08/10/11
Posts: 2762
Loc: Austin, Tx
Fish with someone who has a sonar with side imaging before you decide not to buy one. You aren't going to get much for $500.
2015 Seaark 1872 MV CC Etec-90
Two Helix 12 CHIRP SI's, , MinnKota Riptide ST80/i-pilot Link, Bob's Hydraulic
2018 Robalo R180 CC, Yamaha 115

Bitter Gun Owner
Bitter Clinger
Armed Infidel

#11531298 - 04/09/16 02:28 PM Re: Electronics for Stripers [Re: FishWrangler2]
CypertJ Offline

Registered: 11/22/08
Posts: 263
Loc: Canton, Tx
Side imaging is a must. If you spend 500 on a unit without it, you will always regret not having it.
It basically allows you to scan an area 100-200 ft wide versus maybe 10-20 ft wide. It's really easy to miss fish that aren't right under your boat without it.
I'm not sure what specific units have it and which ones don't but if a new unit with side scan is out of your budget, I would follow the trading post and look for a used graph.

Edited by CypertJ (04/09/16 02:28 PM)
You can kill a fly with a sledgehammer,
But do you really need to son???

#11531571 - 04/09/16 06:40 PM Re: Electronics for Stripers [Re: FishWrangler2]
Bobby Milam Online   content
TFF Team Angler

Registered: 07/13/14
Posts: 3362
Loc: Arlington
Look at the Helix models. They have pretty good prices. Do you need side imaging? No, you can make do without just like you could make do with an old flasher. You could have driven an area of the lake a thousand times and never pass directly over a brush pile or whatever. Regular sonar lets you see a cone shape of what is below your boat. SI will show you what is below AND what is to either side. You'll find things that you might never have found without it. Instead of driving and scanning say a 15' area, you can cover 100' or more to each side of your boat in that same pass.

Seems like a lot of people are trying to hook up a mobile device nowadays to increase the screen size. I'm not sure what the picture quality would be. If it were me, I'd look for someone upgrading and buy a used FF in that price range that has everything on it and be done. Wouldn't have to worry about water damage to electronics that weren't made to be exposed to it as well as the abuse it would be taking in rough water.

#11531663 - 04/09/16 07:45 PM Re: Electronics for Stripers [Re: FishWrangler2]
TFF Celebrity

Registered: 09/14/04
Posts: 7368
Money well spent is money well invested. Take the others advice, look at what others are using. Go on a boat ride if possible to demo the electronics.

" Success is a ladder you can not climb with your hands in your pockets."

#11531780 - 04/09/16 09:02 PM Re: Electronics for Stripers [Re: FishWrangler2]
Tx Tree Grower Offline
Pro Angler

Registered: 09/17/08
Posts: 822
Loc: Palestine, TX
Take a serious look at the Helix models by humminbird. I've owned an 898 and 998 and the quality of image is the same. I have a helix 5si on my aluminium boat and love it. A larger screen is nice but by no means a necessity. We catch a ton of fish with it. My advice is save up enough to buy, at a bare minimum, the Helix 5si with a good map card. You will have every tool you need at that point to be successful. Anybody that says otherwise is probably trying to sell you something.

The next step is to learn how to use your electronics AND learn where these fish hang out. Most days you can eliminate 90-95% of any lake based on knowing the basic habits of striped fish and knowing how to read a map.

You will find that some of the best fishermen on this forum use the exact same model fish finder very differently. It all boils down to time on the water and gaining confidence in whatever tools you have at your disposal. Confidence in your equipment means so much, but confidence can only come from time spent on the water.

#11532290 - 04/10/16 10:03 AM Re: Electronics for Stripers [Re: FishWrangler2]
Wadereel Offline
Green Horn

Registered: 11/06/15
Posts: 18
Loc: Austin, tx
There is a great thread on the crappie forum where people post their graph pics. After looking at that thread I decided To save for SI. The catfish guys have some great insite as well. I have had my Helix 7 out once and it is increadible what I can now see. What a few of the videos on youtube and you will he sold.

#11532328 - 04/10/16 10:30 AM Re: Electronics for Stripers [Re: FishWrangler2]
D Miner Offline

Registered: 03/06/14
Posts: 210
Can SI be added to the Lowrance Hook 7 base model at a later time?

I honestly think that a big screen on the graph is a very important feature.

#11534207 - 04/11/16 10:09 AM Re: Electronics for Stripers [Re: FishWrangler2]
sunsetroosters Offline

Registered: 11/11/07
Posts: 252
I just bought a brand new Garmin 73sv and love it, then I blew up my motor on that boat. Bought another boat with a hds 10 and hds 7 and now I don't need it. I'll sell it to you if you are interested at a price you can't beat. I like the Garmin better than the Lowrance but they are linked together so im going to stick with them.

#11547587 - 04/17/16 12:18 AM Re: Electronics for Stripers [Re: FishWrangler2]
FishWrangler2 Offline

Registered: 03/31/16
Posts: 128
Sunset, which one are you planning on selling?

Also, to the public, do the different generations matter? If not, I think I'd be interested in Sunset's offer. If so, I'm liking what I am seeing from the Elite TI Series from Lowrance. What are your opinions on screen size? Additionally, it sounds like you can connect to an iPad with the Elite TI's which might eliminate some of the screen size concerns.

Finally, if anyone has some decent videos of these lowrance units in use for striper, please share. I'm still trying get my mind around it all and how it helps!

#11547685 - 04/17/16 05:59 AM Re: Electronics for Stripers [Re: FishWrangler2]
bowhunter247 Offline

Registered: 04/14/10
Posts: 236
Loc: Irving Texas
If you read his post, he is selling the Garmin. The HDS 10 and 7 are linked together, so he is keeping them.
A man should be able to saddle his own horse and kill his own snakes.

PB 33lb Blue Cat (Rod and Reel) Lake Lavon 8 Jan 2017
2014 Blue Wave, 2000 Pure Bay, 175 Evinrude

#11548013 - 04/17/16 10:23 AM Re: Electronics for Stripers [Re: FishWrangler2]
rvrrat14 Offline
Pro Angler

Registered: 02/12/05
Posts: 548
Loc: Cen-Tex
Lowrance HDS 7 Gen 2 Touch is Sturcture scan ready with the purchase of the optional LSS-2 transducer. It is on sale at Cabelas, and Academy will honor, for 549. Just got mine. THis was cheaper than the old 522C I've had for the past 5 years (650).

My plan is to use my in-hull PD-WBL for 2D/high speed sonar and the LSS-2 for trolling/slow speed.

#11549478 - 04/17/16 10:52 PM Re: Electronics for Stripers [Re: FishWrangler2]
D Miner Offline

Registered: 03/06/14
Posts: 210
There are quite a few significant changes the Gen 3 HDS units over the Gen 2 . The major ones are built in wifi, brighter screens with the multitouch feature, and 3D Structurescan compatibility. So definitely some worthwhile upgrades.

From Lowrance's description, it doesn't sound like the Elite TI models can be controlled from a tablet or phone. The built in wifi is for downloading maps.

Originally Posted By: FishWrangler2

Also, to the public, do the different generations matter?

#11549810 - 04/18/16 08:54 AM Re: Electronics for Stripers [Re: FishWrangler2]
G Love Offline
Extreme Angler

Registered: 06/03/10
Posts: 1898
Loc: Weatherford, TX
Once you fish with SideScan, you won't want to fish without it.

#11553466 - 04/19/16 08:53 PM Re: Electronics for Stripers [Re: sunsetroosters]
tbucket101 Offline

Registered: 03/19/13
Posts: 395
Loc: Saginaw
PM sent


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