Moderated Discussion Areas
  ContinuousWave: Whaler Marketplace
  Favorite Fishfinder??

Post New Topic  Post Reply
search | FAQ | profile | register | author help

Author Topic:   Favorite Fishfinder??
jay18 posted 05-20-2008 10:01 PM ET (US)   Profile for jay18   Send Email to jay18  
I am getting ready to upgrade my fishfinder, it was a Humminbird Matrix 17, and thought I would throw this one out there if anyone has anything to contribute...,
fourdfish posted 05-20-2008 11:06 PM ET (US)     Profile for fourdfish  Send Email to fourdfish     
I like my Garmin. Check out different models!
DaveS posted 05-21-2008 08:21 AM ET (US)     Profile for DaveS  Send Email to DaveS     
I've always liked garmin. I had to replace my old Garmin 240FF in a hurry so I picked up a Humminbird FF. I've only used the Humminbird once so far so I really can't give you a fair assessment on it.
Aquia Revenge posted 05-21-2008 08:59 AM ET (US)     Profile for Aquia Revenge  Send Email to Aquia Revenge     
I just bought the Humminbird Matrix 97 and I love it. Besides the fantastic chart plotting the fish finder has been very accurate.
Smallfrye posted 05-21-2008 10:52 AM ET (US)     Profile for Smallfrye  Send Email to Smallfrye     
If your serious, furuno is the only way to go. Raymarine makes a decent product, but constantly changing models.
gnr posted 05-21-2008 10:58 AM ET (US)     Profile for gnr    
I used Eagle/Lowrance for years with no problems.

Went with a Garmin last time and I like it also.

aja posted 05-21-2008 11:30 AM ET (US)     Profile for aja  Send Email to aja     
I have owned 3 Eagle / Lowrance units through the years which worked very well for me. For the primarily lake boating which we do, I have had good luck with the lower-middle of the line units which included speed, temp & depth and many otehr features, but were lower power than the units made for heavy duty fishing and very deep water.
Good luck!
friend99 posted 05-21-2008 01:21 PM ET (US)     Profile for friend99    
For your needs, I think Garmin is the best choice. For fresh water check out the discontinued 398 (which is a chart plotter) or the new 300 C fish finder model.
No Respect posted 05-22-2008 01:16 PM ET (US)     Profile for No Respect  Send Email to No Respect     
One word.....Furuno
gvisko posted 05-22-2008 08:32 PM ET (US)     Profile for gvisko  Send Email to gvisko     


friend99 posted 05-23-2008 10:19 PM ET (US)     Profile for friend99    
Furuno is OVERKILL for what he needs. The Furuno costs $1,200 after discount. The $200 Garmin 300c is all he needs.
Sal DiMercurio posted 05-23-2008 11:06 PM ET (US)     Profile for Sal DiMercurio  Send Email to Sal DiMercurio     
Absolutely Furuno, all the way.
All my commercial boats ran Furuno sonar, & Raytheon radars, [ very user friendly ] & both of my Whalers run Furunos, a 6100 on my 15' Sport & 582L color on my 20' outrage.
I run both of these units in waters from 5' deep [ minimum ]for Stripers & rockcod, to 1,200' for Humbolt Squid or Tuna.
Most all commercial boats run Furuno.
No such thing as overkill, the more power the better, no matter what you fish for.
If it's to powerfull, turn the power down & the sensitivity up.
timing posted 05-26-2008 06:37 AM ET (US)     Profile for timing    
Another vote for Furuno -
One of my spring projects for the Whaler was updating the fishfinder from a Furuno FCV600 to the FCV620. The older FCV600 served me well for several years, marking structure and fish when dialed in manually. Used the new FCV620 for the first time yesterday, on auto mode it does an even better job marking & separating, and with a brighter display.
HarryWhisman posted 05-26-2008 10:44 AM ET (US)     Profile for HarryWhisman  Send Email to HarryWhisman     
Why isn't anyone recommending the Humminbird side imaging fishfinders? I thought they were supposed to be a cut above.
Aquia Revenge posted 05-26-2008 10:58 AM ET (US)     Profile for Aquia Revenge  Send Email to Aquia Revenge     
As I stated before I have a Humminbird Matrix 97 Combo unit and I think that it works great, I also researched the side scan units and have read that they are very good, if not exceptional, as well. The overall costs for the top of the line Humminbird units seem to be less than the top than the afore mentioned units while the quality is on par if not better.
friend99 posted 05-26-2008 02:55 PM ET (US)     Profile for friend99    
Jay18..........Let us know what you buy. I think you are wasting your money if you buy Furuno, but if you buy it, let us know what you think.
jay18 posted 05-26-2008 03:20 PM ET (US)     Profile for jay18  Send Email to jay18     
I'm still in the hunt. I cannot justify the Furuno or Ray because of the cost. I fish primarily for Trout & Salmon in about 60-85 ft of water and actually thought my Humminbird did OK. I am just kicking it around to see if there was something else I was missing. BTW, my boting season is about 4 months long here on Lake Michigan, that is why I can't justify dropping big bucks on the unit. I thought there might be someway to integrate my Garmin 276c into another Garmin unit, anyone ever go there?


contender posted 05-26-2008 08:13 PM ET (US)     Profile for contender  Send Email to contender     
First of all how much do you want to spend, this would determine the unit to purchase, I like an all in one unit and the unit I like (I think it one of the best unit out there right now) is the Simrad cx line...
Fishcop posted 05-26-2008 08:42 PM ET (US)     Profile for Fishcop  Send Email to Fishcop     
Hey Jay18,

IMHO, you can't beat Furuno. I run Furuno sounders on all my personal boats and have run them on the work boats.

For the cost of your Garmin 276c, you can get a decent Furuno FVC 600L with a nice transducer. If you want a non-color unit, the Furuno LS4100 will fill all your needs for less.

Just my .02


minitauk85 posted 05-27-2008 04:31 AM ET (US)     Profile for minitauk85  Send Email to minitauk85     
jay- Check out the Lowrance 527c GPS/FF combo unit. For around $700, it's a great machine!-k
friend99 posted 05-27-2008 10:15 AM ET (US)     Profile for friend99    
Jay18.....I guess these people just don't understand that you don't want to spend $500+ on a FF.

Unless you are a commercial fisherman, forget the is pure OVERKILL and a waste of money for what you, or most people need.

Take a look at the color Garmin 300C (MSRP $270 but you can buy it at for $199 through 6/15/08). This is a fine unit for your shallow water use.

Now, if anybody knows of a color Furuno unit for $199 that will match the performance of the Garmin 300C, let us know.

kazankota posted 05-27-2008 09:08 PM ET (US)     Profile for kazankota  Send Email to kazankota     
Eagle FishElite 502c (Fishfinder/GPS internal attena)

Runs about $350-$450

Sal DiMercurio posted 05-27-2008 09:52 PM ET (US)     Profile for Sal DiMercurio  Send Email to Sal DiMercurio     
Some people prefer to drive a Lexus, & some are happy with a Kia,...myself, I prefer the best [ Furuno ] , that's why I own 2 Boston Whalers & not 2 Bayliners.
littleblue posted 05-28-2008 02:29 AM ET (US)     Profile for littleblue  Send Email to littleblue     
I would rather get a used Furuno than a new "x" brand unit. Look around on ebay and such, you can find good deals once in a while.
alfred posted 05-28-2008 06:19 AM ET (US)     Profile for alfred  Send Email to alfred     
Furuno 585/1kw tranny - worth every cent.
swede5 posted 05-28-2008 12:28 PM ET (US)     Profile for swede5  Send Email to swede5     
I just purchased the Garmin 540s GPS and depthfinder. Until the end of May boaters world has it for $699 plus you can get the vision chip for $100 bucks after the $200 rebate. I searched high and low to find a better deal. On line it appears you can get a better deal until you discover they usually don't come with a transducer etc. The sale price makes the 540s less than the 440. I also like the Lowrance however the chip is extra and no one had them on sale. I used to have a Furuno 1650 in another boat. I only had it because it was given to me. It worked great but 7-8 years old made it kind of "old school". I can't justify the price of a new Furuno. Good luck
Sal DiMercurio posted 05-28-2008 03:21 PM ET (US)     Profile for Sal DiMercurio  Send Email to Sal DiMercurio     
When buying sonar, you generaly get whayt you pay for.
For instance, if you fish Salmon on the ocean, [ saltwater ] you wont see them if your using a $400 sonar.
My last big money item when I commercial fished, was my Sonar,....cost me $3,900 back about 18 years ago.
I didn't spend $3,900 because I wanted to, I spent it because I had to, in order to get a machine to show me what needed to be shown.
Salmon don't show in salwater unless you have a top of the line sonar that cost plenty.
Some people "think" they see Salmon with their $300 - $500 units while on the ocean, but their not seeing what they think they are.
We [ commercial salmon fishers ] don't spend $3900 on sonar, just because it comes with a 10" screen, we spend it, because that's the only sonar besides Military sonar, that can actually see Salmon in the ocean.
A good buddy of mine has a $4,000 unit on his 20' aluminum skiff that he uses for sport salmon fishing out of Montery,....his scores beat just about everyone elses, & it's not coincidence that he runs the same unit as virtually all the top guns.
Your not going to see Humbolt squid in the canyon off montery, in 1,200' of water, with a $400 - $500 unit.
You virtually will not find a commercial fisherman that fishes the ocean, with a Humming bird or Lowrance sonar, as those sonars are generally used by shallow water fishers that fish for black bass or walleye or stripers in water less than 100'.
Hell, I've got a spare $99 sonar for my 15' Whaler sport, & I have no trouble finding stripers, Sturgeon, or catfish with that unit in less than 100'.
For a person that's only going to fish lakes or rivers less than 100 ft deep, a Lowrance or Humingbird will fill the bill just perfect, but if you also fish the big blue [ ocean ] , you will most certainl;y improve your fishing scores with a machine that can actually tell you what's below your boat in 500 ft of water.
jdizzie posted 05-28-2008 03:29 PM ET (US)     Profile for jdizzie  Send Email to jdizzie     
I have a twenty year old Sitex unit that works great. CVS something, I love it.
BlueMax posted 05-28-2008 04:05 PM ET (US)     Profile for BlueMax  Send Email to BlueMax     
I didn't post earlier because I am a novice fisherman/boater and have nothing of real value to put in as far as comparing fish finders - however just in the interest of passing along info from my limited experience -
I have the Humminbird 565 fishfinder with dual beams (60 degree for around the boat and 20 degree for directly below the boat). I have not gone into very deep water (45-60 feet) but have found the depth finder and temperature guage to be fairly accurate at all speeds - however there seems to be one spot in lower rpm/speed (around 2 grand on tach) that makes the depthfinder go crazy and display depths randomly from .5 to 900 feet which is interesteing (they claim depth acuracy up to 800').

Anyway it has several different view screens and does great for me in locating fish and even distinguishing between size and location (shows those under the boat as solid and on the sides as hollow - the symbol will change as the fish gets picked up by the other beam in natural course of movement but keeps the same ID tag), it also gives a relative depth for the fish and tags each with a number that allows you to track a specific target. For less than $200 at Wal-Mart (and can be found on-line for $179 now) this was the choice for me, but I am not as serious a fisherman as much as I am a "don't run aground" person and bought the model more for depth finding at this time - however the fish finder and various screens and features are neat and work well when my fishing-fanatic-friends are on board and working the control buttons.

My two cents,

andygere posted 05-28-2008 06:52 PM ET (US)     Profile for andygere  Send Email to andygere     
I do NOT like my Garmin Fishfinder 240 .

-It frequently loses the bottom in water deeper than 200 feet. I am almost always in water deeper than 200 feet.

It sometimes loses the bottom in water as shallow as 100 feet.

-It often loses the bottom while running in sloppy seas (yes, I have fine-tuned the placement of the transducer).

-The screen resolution is marginal.

-It does not know the difference between kelp and fish.

-It is plagued with false echos near the surface.

-It was not cheap.

-It continues to work, so I can not justify purchasing a different unit.

I have two older Garmin GPS units, and like both of them very much.

kazankota posted 05-28-2008 07:20 PM ET (US)     Profile for kazankota  Send Email to kazankota     
Sal: You are right when you say no Commercial fisherman would use a Hummingbird, Lowrance/ Eagle unit. That is their livelihood and I would expect that they would use the absolute top end equipment.

As far as some of these units, in particular the Eagle 642 and 502 I have seen both of these used for Tuna and shark fishing out at the "Mudhole", off the coast of Rhode Island, and they did a great job in deep water. Just as good as the Furuno on our 27 Grady, if not better, so not sure why they wouldn't pick up Salmon. I have to agree that the regular Furuno units are overkill for a 15 or 17 Whaler, but there is no right or wrong here. You pay what you get for... exactly. However I think you underestimate some of the newer units technology.

friend99 posted 05-29-2008 10:32 AM ET (US)     Profile for friend99    
Kaz....kudos! You hit the nail on the head.

Jay18.....people seem to be ignoring your desire to NOT spend a lot of money and the fact that you fish in 60-85 feet of water. Many of them seem to be trying to justify in their mind why they spent so much money on their unit. In any event, for your desires of a low cost unit for shallow water (under 100 feet) I think the Garmin 300C with a BoaterWorld sale price of $199 is a great unit.

Sal D.... For personal use, I own a 13' BW SS and recently bought a 15' Dauntless, but in new boats over 20' some people prefer to drive a Bentley, & some are happy with a Lexus/Toyota. That's why my 21' Boat is an Everglades and not a Boston Whaler.

Post New Topic  Post Reply
Hop to:

Contact Us | RETURN to ContinuousWave Top Page

Powered by: Ultimate Bulletin Board, Freeware Version 2000
Purchase our Licensed Version- which adds many more features!
© Infopop Corporation (formerly Madrona Park, Inc.), 1998 - 2000.