Opinions on sounders/gps combos

 Hi all just wanted some advice/opinions on sounders/gps units.

I have been looking for a while and im a bit torn on what to get.

Its going on a Stabicraft 1410 frontier, i was looking at spending between $1400 to $1900.

I have had a fair bit of time using a lowrance hds10 on my last boat and i suppose i have not used any others with much time, but was looking for something different from a Lowrance.

The type of fishing/spearfishing i do is anything from river work, around metro and  up north trips e.g exmouth , steep point Gnarloo etc.

Any opinions welcome.

 

Cheers

 


Posts: 74

Date Joined: 29/03/13

 G'dayI'm no expert in the

Thu, 2018-01-18 20:42

 G'day

I'm no expert in the area but enjoy tech to a fair degree.  I installed a Lowrance HDS touch 9 in my last boat 4 or 5 years ago and liked it, after having spent a couple of months researching why I couldn't see fish on the screen in deep water, even when they were coming over the side.  Lowrance filled me in on the necessary constant manual adjusting of the ping speed to get results.  Tech support excellent/   Then changed boats about 3 years and had intended to get another lowrance but got a killer deal on a couple of run out model garmins.  At first I had a few complaints but after I mentioned them to Garmin support they did some upgrades and now very happy.  As much as I like fiddling around with tech, on the water I just like to turn them on and let them do their work and the garmin units do this beautifully.  I helped a neighbour set up his HDS 7 a couple of weeks ago and surprised to see that Lowrance (in that unit at least) still haven't developed an algorithym for the ping speed, I'm guessing thats how garmin have overcome that issue.  Also the refresh on the lowrance chart screen when zooming etc is incredibly slow but instant on the garmins.  This maybe due to different price brachets though.  I thought the menu structures were more user friendly on the Lowrance and I don't have touch screen with the garmins, but do have a lot of 'soft touch' buttons which is almost as good.    I never could get a decent bottom reading on the lowrance at any cruising speed but never loose bottom now, even at pretty high speed in deepish water, ie 60kph in 150ft of water.  This may have been an issue with the trannie but all seemed ok with that.  So very happy to go garmin on my next purchase but will still look at options

Anyway just my thoughts on my minimal experience.   

Cheers

Rod

backlash's picture

Posts: 194

Date Joined: 12/10/10

Nice boats !

Fri, 2018-01-19 07:59

Is yours a centre or side console with some dash sapce ?
I used to have a Stabicraft 389 dinghy - the predecessor to your boat.  I was running a Lowrance Elite 5 on that, and as mine was a tiller steeer and I didn't want any clutter I had it mounted on the side rail using a ram mount.  My requirements were for mid-depth range fishing (less than 100m water depth) due to the limitations on fishing range with the boat, as mine had the lower pontoons/freeboard.
The Lowrance Elite 5 was a nice little unit for the money.   As an example I could see my baits dropping down to the bottom clearly.   As mentioned elsewhere recently on this forum the CHIRP system doens't do as great a job on telling you what the bottom composition is.  But for clarity of what is between your boat and the bottom it is very nice.

I have upgraded from the Stabicraft to my current 5m Cairns Custom Craft Centre Console (profile pic).
I have gone to a Furuno Combo on the Centre Console as I have dash space. 
The boat originaly came with a Lowrance elite 7 (bigger screen, same functionality as the elite 5.that was a nice unit as well.
I have installed a GP1870F (GPS/Sounder Combo) plus a FCV627 as my dedicated Sounder.  I'm still learning to use this combination.  The Furuno reads bottom up to 22kts; I think I may have jagged the transducer installation to get this;very happy with it.
I like having the two separate dedicated units (the GP1870F is a backup sounder); personale preference

The Garmin units look very very nice as well and the guys in the USA (thehulltruth web forum) also rate them.
I do not think I'd go back to a Lowrance unit again, even though you can get some nice large touch screens nowadays.
For that Budget and without knowing your console space available, I'd be looking at a large Garmin Combo unit.

Have fun doing the research!

Dave

ranmar850's picture

Posts: 1952

Date Joined: 12/08/12

If you buy a combo

Sat, 2018-01-20 08:53

 have a good play with the demo unit first. I'm off them a bit personally, and the new boat, although it will have two units which are both combos, will be run as dedicated units. My current unit is an Elite 7 CHIRP--I tend to work the sounder part of it pretty hard, using custom ranges, and having to go to a page to get the context menu just drives me up the wall. It is certainly easier with the touch screen models--I have set up an Elite Ti, and played with it a bit, touch makes it sooo much easier. So have a go with a demo, see how much you can control of each function( sounder and chartplotter) without having to do too much page changing. Just looking at the Simrad and Raymarine Axiom interfaces, they certainly seem to be very simple and intuitive to use, and the 7 incher are well within your price range, bearing in mind they would be 600w units, although it sounds like it would be fine for you anyway. You only need 1kw capability if you are going well beyond 100 metres. 

Posts: 178

Date Joined: 26/04/11

Ranmar Can I ask what custom

Mon, 2018-01-22 12:08

Ranmar
Can I ask what custom settings you are using on the Elite 7?

ranmar850's picture

Posts: 1952

Date Joined: 12/08/12

I use custom ranges to get a really good look at the bottom

Mon, 2018-01-22 12:31

 Particularly when crayfishing, when you have to be exact, , if you want to get where you can, say just the bottom and full stroke lengths, i  might go upper limit 8 fathoms and lower limit 14 fathoms if I am in 12 fathoms of weater. it has the effect of making the bottom image larger and easier to see variations. But it means an awful lot of Page>sonar>menu>range> scroll down to  very bottom where Custom lives>upper>enter a value>lower> enter a value>OK>Menu>page> split screen. Phew. The furuno method you can use is much easier where you just select a really low range like 5 or 10, and then Shift until you have the bottom echo back.

I have posted up what I get to get a decent picture out these in this post in the Lowrance section

fishwrecked.com/forum/hdi-7-colour-palette-pics-added

 

fishwrecked.com/forum/hdi-7-elite-pics

 

Posts: 6

Date Joined: 04/12/17

Good feed back

Sat, 2018-01-20 22:55

 Great feed back guys,

Over the last couple of days I have been running around testing some units, also speaking with some guys in the industry. Value for money I would be looking at either a Axion or Garmin. The usability, quick switch features, speed on processing a power are perfect for what I want. Axion is a couple hundred more but comes with a suitable transducer for 3D imaging. The Garmin needs a upgraded transducer to run 3D.

Both are sweet units 

 

Posts: 6

Date Joined: 04/12/17

Good feed back

Sat, 2018-01-20 22:55

 Great feed back guys,

Over the last couple of days I have been running around testing some units, also speaking with some guys in the industry. Value for money I would be looking at either a Axion or Garmin. The usability, quick switch features, speed on processing a power are perfect for what I want. Axion is a couple hundred more but comes with a suitable transducer for 3D imaging. The Garmin needs a upgraded transducer to run 3D.

Both are sweet units 

 

Posts: 53

Date Joined: 27/05/11

I have the Garmin 95sv with

Sun, 2018-01-21 07:44

I have the Garmin 95sv with the GT51m Transducer. The more I use it the more I like it. loving how you can simply scroll back through the sounder, select a lump on the screen and imediately navigate back to it. You can create custom screen combinations including resizing each view. Mine is not a touch screen. The only frustrating thing about it is that it is not that simple to rename a waypoint or customized screen as a touch screen would be.

ranmar850's picture

Posts: 1952

Date Joined: 12/08/12

That scroll back is available on most units now

Sun, 2018-01-21 10:12

 Even my Little Lowrance Elite 7 has it ( whereas expensive Furunos need to buy a Markfish unit) Great when you are trolling , look around at the sounder and see something  interesting and new disappearing of f the far edge of the screen, just run the cursor back and bingo, you have the mark.

Posts: 165

Date Joined: 26/03/17

don't have much experience

Mon, 2018-01-22 12:30

don't have much experience with sounders, only had 1 so far, its a simrad, and relaly happy with it, only thing I would say is don't get one where everything is touch screen. is a bugger to zoom in and out etc when your driving along and bumping around....

crano's picture

Posts: 453

Date Joined: 04/11/09

3D not so good

Mon, 2018-01-22 18:44

 If you intend to use axiom 3D in 35m or more you will be dissapointed. The rest of the functions are OK