Author Topic: Fish /Depth Finder / GPS  (Read 5276 times)

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Offline Fort Wisers

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Fish /Depth Finder / GPS
« on: June 09, 2015, 06:15:28 PM »
Looking at maybe getting a new toy for the boat.
I currently have an old Lowrance Fish / Depth finder but it's pretty old and doesn't have GPS.
I'm normally not one for loading up with electronic gizmos (especially things like GPS) but in the boat I find it sometimes nice.
Especially when exploring hidden little bays on Kipawa.
So far I'm looking at the Hummingbird 688ci but my extent of looking so far has been passing one in Canadian Tire and scrolling through a few screens.
Anyone have any opinions they'd care to share?
Ones you own, likes, dilikes?
Do you think the things are a waste of money?
I'm all ears......
Thanks!
« Last Edit: June 09, 2015, 07:21:39 PM by Fort Wisers »

Offline AndrewH

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Re: Fish /Depth Finder / GPS
« Reply #1 on: June 09, 2015, 08:02:41 PM »
I love mine, wouldnt fish without it, especially GPS with a navionics chip, its awesome to find shoals, ledges, inflows etc.  The humminbirds or lowrance are good, shop around for price, you can do better than C tire, try lebarons or radioworld online.

I have a humminbird 385ci portable i use for ice fishing and for when i use another boat, have a lowrance hds-7 touch on my boat. great for patterning fish as well.

Good luck.

Andrew

Offline puckster_guy

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Re: Fish /Depth Finder / GPS
« Reply #2 on: June 09, 2015, 08:48:06 PM »
I agree with Andrew. I have a hummingbird elite 5 with the gps and navionics chip. It did an amazing job finding shoals dropoffs etc. It also helped me navigate to kipawa and back to my place at red pine chutes. Be carefull with it, it's about 80% accurate with depths but my prop still found rocks and such where the map said 20ft. Overall a great buy. The chip also shows many major lakes across ont. including the Ottawa river.
Days spent fishing don't count against life :)

Offline Fort Wisers

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Re: Fish /Depth Finder / GPS
« Reply #3 on: June 10, 2015, 05:51:50 AM »
Hey guys!
Thanks for the great information.
I do agree that the pricing is not always the best at Canadian Tire.
I just saw a few units there and started playing with the one hummingbird model.
I'll check them out in a few other proper outdoors stores and see what I can find.

Sorry, stupid question, I assume the navionics chip is an add-on for maps etc?
Maybe during lunch, I'll do some investigating!
Obviously I'm pretty green with this stuff!

@Puckster: I know what you mean about depths, my old lowrance had a series of lake maps loaded on it (previous owner) that showed depth contours.
50% of the time these contour depth numbers were way off compared to what the actual depth finder told me (via sonar).
I always used the depth finder reading and set an alarm at like 3-4 feet (depending on my comfort level of the lake we were in).
Thanks for the heads up....


Offline Canuckbass

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Re: Fish /Depth Finder / GPS
« Reply #4 on: June 10, 2015, 08:17:17 AM »
@Fort Wisers
I can't fish without a sonar. Once I learned to read a sonar it is 100% trust for me. If I pull up on a spot and idle around and don't see and separations from bottom I run to next spot. I use it to located fish and if you dial it in to read your jig it s incredible for deeper lakers etc.
I've always used GPS but on Kipawa I don't. I just know there are millions of walleye around everywhere and I don't travel far to start catching.
GPS is a great safety source if stuck in bad weather or dark.
Lots of videos on YouTube to learn from.
Radioworld is always your best bet, and you deal with experienced staff if a problem occurs.

Offline Fort Wisers

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Re: Fish /Depth Finder / GPS
« Reply #5 on: June 10, 2015, 08:32:46 AM »
@ Canuckbass
Thanks for your insight......good to hear people are finding these things handy.
I know Kipawa pretty well but I want to start exploring the lake a lot more and was always worried about getting everyone home safely should a bad fog roll in or I poorly judge how quickly nightfall rolls in while out exploring.
I know of a few guys who have lived on the lake their whole life and have still gotten turned around in bad fog and/or night.
I have never heard of Radio World, I'll do some searching and see if we have one near here (Ottawa Canada).

Thanks again to everyone, might help me convince "the accountant" that this is a worthwhile investment!
Brent
« Last Edit: June 10, 2015, 08:35:09 AM by Fort Wisers »

Offline Canuckbass

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Re: Fish /Depth Finder / GPS
« Reply #6 on: June 10, 2015, 09:29:58 AM »
Radioworld has a great website and ship anywhere.
They also have staff on hand that used to work for Lowrance before they took operations south.
Great people to deal with and honest.

Offline Fort Wisers

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Re: Fish /Depth Finder / GPS
« Reply #7 on: June 10, 2015, 09:38:42 AM »
@Canuckbass:
Thanks man, the insight is much appreciated.
Hope to see you out on the lake.....
Brent

Offline Jay Thomas

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Re: Fish /Depth Finder / GPS
« Reply #8 on: June 12, 2015, 07:43:00 PM »
IMHO, fishing without a sonar/GPS combination unit is comparable to driving at night without lights!

I have been using a Lowrance HDS7 (colour sonar + GPS) with a Navionics Premium Hotmaps chip since 2009. Even though it's 6 years old, it still works great.

A fishing colleague recently purchased a Humminbird Helix 5 colour sonar + GPS from Sail at the Trainyards. He brought it to my place to download the latest software available and to get my help in getting the settings right. It's a very nice unit for $500.

Having GPS capability is invaluable. It can assist getting home when required and it sure helps to be able to mark underwater humps (e.g. Hay Bay has at least 5 underwater humps), unmarked rocky shoals and fish locations.

Go for it!

Jay

Offline Fort Wisers

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Re: Fish /Depth Finder / GPS
« Reply #9 on: June 13, 2015, 06:40:42 AM »
IMHO, fishing without a sonar/GPS combination unit is comparable to driving at night without lights!

I have been using a Lowrance HDS7 (colour sonar + GPS) with a Navionics Premium Hotmaps chip since 2009. Even though it's 6 years old, it still works great.

A fishing colleague recently purchased a Humminbird Helix 5 colour sonar + GPS from Sail at the Trainyards. He brought it to my place to download the latest software available and to get my help in getting the settings right. It's a very nice unit for $500.

Having GPS capability is invaluable. It can assist getting home when required and it sure helps to be able to mark underwater humps (e.g. Hay Bay has at least 5 underwater humps), unmarked rocky shoals and fish locations.

Go for it!


Jay

Thanks Jay!
I was at Sail last night looking at unit.
I looked at both a Lowrance Eltie 7 (similar to what you have I think) and a Hummingbird 899.
To be honest, I like the Lowrance better but I think the shorter, wider dimensions of the hummingbird may fit better into the spot I'm thinking on the boat.
Today (after some home reno work) I hope to go out to the boat and take some more accurate measurements and make a final decision.
I've noticed that about Hay Bay, my brother in-law and I were up there a couple summers ago with his boat.
That was our first time there so we took it slow, but we were surprised at the number and location of some of the "humps".
There's one just as you get above Fox Island that seems to rise out of nowhere, right in the middle of the bay,  and if you didn't know about it and came through with a bit of speed I don't think the end result would be pretty!

Thanks for the input!
I'll keep you all posted......

Take care:
Brent


« Last Edit: July 07, 2015, 07:55:20 PM by Fort Wisers »

Offline puckster_guy

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Re: Fish /Depth Finder / GPS
« Reply #10 on: July 14, 2015, 05:59:03 PM »
 Just a tip about these GPS's. I use way points to mark all hazards and fishing holes. That way when I'm coming back to an area I remember where the hazards are/ or know exactly where they are and drive around them.
Days spent fishing don't count against life :)

Offline wvmedic

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Re: Fish /Depth Finder / GPS
« Reply #11 on: July 15, 2015, 10:08:40 AM »
I have a Lowrance Elite 4 HDI, caught it on sale at Gander Mountain for $249.00 US. It came with Lake Insight Pro v15, it is US maps only though.

When I bought it, I wanted it to mainly read depth and bottom structure and the GPS was just an added bonus. Well I used it two weeks ago on the French river and Lake Nipissing and was a very useful tool. I learned quite a bit by using it, though I have a lot to learn about using sonar. I think it is a very valuable tool to have and with these units priced as they are, in the great scheme of things. They are really not that expensive, and I think what ever manufacture you chose you will be fine. So long as it is a name brand with a long reputation, the difference in Hummingbird or Lowrance in my opinion and limited knowledge. Is like debating on which truck is the best, Chevy, Ford or Dodge. Not in any particular order, but they all get the job done in there own way. So the end result is the same, it's just personal opinion and what brand you trust the most.

Jeff

Offline getthenet

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Re: Fish /Depth Finder / GPS
« Reply #12 on: July 16, 2015, 12:58:34 AM »
I think your right,wvmedic.They're all nice when they're brand new.The test is to see how they hold up a year or two down the road !

Offline Ozzy30

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Re: Fish /Depth Finder / GPS
« Reply #13 on: July 16, 2015, 11:01:14 AM »
The 688 is a great unit.  I put it on my new Lund this year and worked like a dream at Kipawa last week.  I bought mine from basspro.  It came with the navionics chip.  After taxes I was $600 in Vaughan.  I would highly recommend it.  But I did a lot of research and they all have great reviews and benefits.

http://www.basspro.com/Humminbird-688-ci-HD-DI-KVD-GPS/Fishfinder-Combo-with-Navionics-Map-Card/product/1409251812/

Offline Fort Wisers

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Re: Fish /Depth Finder / GPS
« Reply #14 on: July 16, 2015, 12:21:56 PM »
Thanks again gang for all the feedback, still haven't invested in one as other things with the home reno have come up meaning this has been bumped down a few rungs.
All in good time!