Best Humminbird Fish Finders in 2015

The Best Hummingbird Fish Finders

Are you looking for a quality fish finder? In that case, you’ve come to the right place. In here, I will present the top 5 Humminbird Fish Finders which will take your fishing experience to maximum! Using one of the top-quality, professional Hummingbird fish finders, you will get a hold of a wide range of fishfinding options. You will get crystal-clear imaging, laser-targeted tracking results, even in the murkiest waters, or where the bottom of the sea, lake or river has the most irregularities. With a super tracker like a Humminbird Fish Finder 1199ci HD SI Combo or the Humminbird ONIX10ci SI Combo, fish will literally have no place to hide! So, without wasting anymore of your time, here are the most effective Humminbird Fish Finders out there.

Humminbird Helix 5 SI GPS

Humminbird HELIX 5 SI GPS

 

The Humminbird HELIX series brings a fresh line of fish finders at the beginning of 2015. They all feature a new layout, but the best part about these new units is their price. They all come for substantially lower prices than the HD ones in the 600 series.

This being said, the Humminbird HELIX 5 SI GPS, is the most affordable Side Imaging / Down Imaging fish finder that you can have. That’s why it currently occupies the 1st position in our classification. Although similar in features to the 698ci HD SI Combo, it has a different screen layout, with a pixel matrix of 480V x 800H, which gives much more space to the Side Imaging and Down Imaging views. This allows a better reading and interpretation of the underwater area you’re scanning. The screen is 256 Color TFT, 5-inch in diagonal, with backlight, for easy reading in the dark or in direct sunlight.

The HELIX 5 SI GPS fish finder comes with a standard Transom XNT 9 SI 180 T transducer. Its sonar technology is DualBeam Plus, with SwitchFire, Side Imaging and Down Imaging. It can be operated at 3 frequencies: 200 kHz / 20°, 83 kHz / 60° and 455 kHz for SI and DI. Its power output is 500 Watts (RMS) / 4000 Watts PTP, and has a depth capability of 1500 ft. for 2D views, and 100 ft. for Side Imaging. Does not support 360 Imaging, so if you would like the possibility of such an upgrade, you’ll have to opt for a 999ci HD SI Combo.

The navigational capabilities of this HELIX unit include Precision GPS, and the UniMap cartography pack, which covers the continental U.S. coastline, inland lakes and rivers at 30 meters per pixel resolution. It’s also Navionics Gold / HotMaps capable and Humminbird Mapping capable, so you can opt for one of these upgrades if you’d like. It can hold up to 2,500 waypoints, 45 routes and 50 tracks (20,000 points each).

Other features that you’ll get with this fish finder and chartplotter are: the Selective Fish ID+, Sonar Recording, Screen Snap Shot, Wide/Narrow Cone Split Screen, Upgradable Internal Software, Temperature Alarm, X-Press Menu System, 3D Chart View and many others.


Hummingbird Fish Finders - 698ci HD SI Combo

Humminbird 698ci HD SI Combo

 

A few new series of fish finders were released by Humminbird by the end of 2013, the Onix, ION and 600 series. And regarding the 600 series, it pretty much came to replace the 500 and 700 series which were discontinued.

These being said, one of the best (if not the best) Side Imaging fish finders from Humminbird at the moment, in terms of quality / price ratio, is the Humminbird 698ci HD SI Combo. What makes it so great? Let’s have a look at its features.

First of all, it has a big enough screen for both fish tracking and chartplotting, 5-inch in diagonal, with a pixel resolution of 480 x 640. Evidently, it has a brilliant 256 color TFT display, LCD backlit screen, making all the sonar returns much easier to interpret and understand.

The sonar capabilities of this unit are quite generous. As its name suggests, it has High-Definition Side Imaging and Down Imaging, the two options which take the sonar reading to a superior level, offering a crystal clear view of what’s directly under the boat, and side to side. The depth capability of the 698ci HD SI Combo is 100ft. for SI and DI, and up to 1500ft. for the down beam, traditional sonar view. The unit also features the Fish ID+ view.

This fish finder is equipped with Dual Beam Plus sonar, including SwitchFire. In other words, you will be able to scan the water under your boat in two modes: a 60° / 83 kHz view for a wider coverage, or a 20° / 200 kHz view, with a narrower, but more accurate coverage. Or, you can operate both views simultaneously, in split screen. The frequency of the sonar for SI and DI is 455 kHz with a total coverage of 180°. The power output of this unit is 500 Watts (RMS) and 4000 (PTP). The transducer of the 698ci HD SI Combo is the standard Transom XNT 9 SI 180 T.

Regarding the navigational capabilities of the Humminbird 698ci HD SI Combo, precision GPS, chartplotting and trackplotting are on the list, the unit being capable to store up to 2,500 waypoints, 45 routes and 50/20,000 tracks/points. It has built-in UniMap cartography package, and it’s also upgradable with an SD card for Navionics Gold / HotMaps, or Lakemaster. Unfortunately it does not support 360 Imaging.

In conclusion, the Humminbird 698ci HD SI Combo is number one in our top 5, because it basically has all the navigational and fish finding options required by any angler, recreational or pro, to take their fishing to a superior level, available for quite an excellent price, compared with other Hummingbird fish finders.


Hummingbird Fish Finders - 999ci High Definition Side Imaging Combo

Humminbird 999ci HD SI Combo

humminbird 999ci hd si combo fish finder

The 999ci HD SI Combo is one of the most complete fish finders from Humminbird, with an excellent price / quality ratio. However, it’s only on the 3rd place in this top 5 because it’s price still goes over $1,000. Other than that, it’s a great unit, and here’s what it can do.

The Humminbird 999ci HD SI Combo features an 8-inch diagonal screen, full color LCD, with backlight, and a pixel matrix of 800H x 480V. Its standard sonar covers HD Side Imaging, Down Imaging and Dual Beam Plus, having a standard coverage of 20° / 60° / 180°. Side Imaging and Down Imaging are reliable for depths up to 150 ft., while the standard 2D imaging, goes up to 1,500 ft. The Side Imaging covers a surface of 240 ft. on each side of the boat. Like most fish finders within the 900 series, it can support a QuadraBeam Plus sonar. Also, this unit is 360 Imaging capable.

The standard transducer of the 999ci HD SI Combo is a Transom XHS 9 HDSI 180 T. The standard power output of this unit is 500 Watts RMS / 4000 Watts PTP, but it has up to 1,000 Watts RMS / 8,000 Watts PTP capability, if equipped with a deep water transducer.

The navigational capabilities of this unit include Precision GPS antenna, and the ContourXD cartography pack, which covers over 3,000 U.S. lake maps, featuring depth contour lines of each one of them, so you’ll be able to know exactly how the bottom of your lake looks like. This unit can store up to 2,750 waypoints, 45 routes and 50 tracks (20,000 points each track). Regarding the optional upgrades and improvements that can be brought to this fishfinder, Navionics Platinum, Gold and HotMaps, as well as Lakemaster map package, NMEA2000, Radar2 and iPilotLink.

Other features that you will benefit from with the 999ci HD SI Combo are: Ethernet, Selective Fish ID+, Temperature Graph and Alarm, Sonar Recording, Split Screen Zoom and Snap Shot, Instant Image Update, Triplog, 3D Chart View and many others.


Hummingbird Fish Finders - ONIX10ci SI Combo

Humminbird ONIX10ci SI Combo

Humminbird ONIX10ci Side Imaging Combo Fish Finder

 

The Humminbird ONIX10ci SI Combo is one of the Humminbird models released last year. It features new TouchScreen Multi-Touch technology which, along with a very wide array of other options, places it above most other fish finder models. It is currently the most complete fish finder and navigational tool from Humminbird. The reason it occupies only the 4th position in our classification, is that its price simply doesn’t fit to just any pocket. Other than that, this fish finder and chartplotter is simply an outstanding piece of technology.

It has an outstanding range of sonar capabilities. It offers High Definition Side Imaging and Down Imaging, DualBeam Plus sonar and Digital Signal Processing, with a standard coverage of 20° (200 kHz), 60° (83kHz) for DualBeam Plus standard. Side Imaging beams can be operated at two frequencies: 455 kHz for a coverage of 86° (x2), or 800 kHz for a coverage of 55° (x2) and a much sharper image. Down Imaging can also use two frequencies: 455 kHz / 75°, or 800 kHz / 45°.

Standard mode is reliable for depths up to 1,500 ft, Side Imaging – 150 ft. and Down Imaging – 350 ft. If you opt for a deep water transducer, this unit can increase in power up to 1000 Watts (RMS), and become capable of scanning depths of 5,000 ft. Its standard power is 500 Watts (RMS) / 4,000 Watts (PTP). Also, this unit is 360 Imaging and CHIRP technology capable, but these options are not included.

This unit has a 10.4-inch diagonal screen, backlit, full color, with a pixel resolution of 1024H x 768V. The screen features Cross Touch technology and can be operated via direct touch like most smartphones, which simplifies the navigation through the menus by a lot.

In terms of GPS and navigational capabilities, the ONIX10ci SI Combo also offers a consistent palette of features. GPS Speed, and Precision GPS built in, chartplotting and trackplotting are on the list. The data storage goes up to 3,000 waypoints, 200 routes, and 50 / 20,000 tracks / points. Comes with the built in TriFuel cartography pack – which provides a database of maps from LakeMaster, Navionics and C-Map. There’s also a 3D chart view option included. However, the unit does not come with full Navionics Platinum, Navionics Gold HotMaps or Lakemaster, these being only optional. Last but not least, this unit has NMEA2000, an excellent communications standard option, used to connect marine sensors and display units within ships and boats.

Along with the capabilities of this fish finder presented here, there’s quite a bunch remaining, including: Temperature Graph and Alarm, Selective Fish ID+, Custom View, Digital Readout, Sonar Recording, Freeze Frame, Ethernet and many others.


Hummingbirds Fish Finders - ION 12

Humminbird ION 12

Hummingbird Fish Finder ION 12

 

 

At the moment the ION 12 is the most advanced navigational and fish finding tool provided by Humminbird. The only reason it’s not number one in this top 5, is that its price is quite a little bit high, and many of its features are optional, and you’ll have to pay extra for them. Anyway, let’s see what this fish finder can do.

Maybe the most important feature to be mentioned about the Humminbird ION 12 is the TouchScreen (Cross-Touch) technology, and can easily be operated like a tablet or smartphone, undrestanding commands like tapping or swiping the screen. Needless to say, this adds a lot of ease to its use. The unit comes with a huge, 12.1-inch diagonal screen, with a 1024 x 768 pixel resolution, brilliant color (TFT, 16.7 mm colors), with backlight.

When it comes to it’s sonar capabilities, it’s very important to know that the unit does not come with a sonar module and a transducer. But it can be equipped with an SM1000, SM2000, or SM3000 sonar module and various types of transducers. The ION 12 supports Side Imaging, Down Imaging and 360 Imaging, but they depend on the transducer you equip it with, along with other options such as CHIRP technology, 3D Chart View, Selective Fish ID+, SwitchFire, Real Time Sonar RTS Window. The unit has a power output of 2000 Watts (RMS) / 16000 Watts (PTP).

The ION 12 has a GPS receiver, but other GPS and navigational features, such as trackplotting, chartplotting, GPS speed and precision GPS are all optional as well. It supports all the cartography packages though, so you can equip it with a Lakemaster, Navionics Platinum+, Gold or HotMaps card, or TriFuel Cartography. Its memory can store up to 3,000 waypoints, 50 tracks (20,000 points each) and up to 200 routes, like the majority of the Hummingbird fish finders.

So, basically the Hummingbird ION 12 is just an advanced fish finder head unit, but in order to turn it into an advanced fish finding, radar and navigational tool, you will have to make quite some additions to it.


The Hummingbird Fish Finders presented here are the most complete of each series. They are all indeed elite fish finding tools. They all come with various System Network options like CannonLink, but only the 800,900, 1100, ONIX and ION series are Ethernet compatible.

Ethernet is a connectivity solution to other Humminbird units, allowing your to share waypoints, routes, tracks, GPS position and even Sonar information. However, you won’t be able to get SI Sonar information on a Humminbird unit that’s not compatible with SI.

All in all these are all top-shelf Hummingbird fish finders and which will maximize your fishing experience. They all have 1 year warranty. As far as it concerns me, I don’t think you’ll ever regret of purchasing any of the Hummingbird Fish Finders reviewed here.

Humminbird Fish Finder HELIX 5 CHIRP SI GPS G2 Review

HELIX 5 CHIRP SI GPS G2

HELIX 5 CHIRP SI GPS G2

The HELIX 5 CHIRP SI GPS G2 is one of the newest models from Humminbird for 2017. It comes with quite a few improvements over the older HELIX 5 SI GPS. The major differences are the CHIRP sonar technology and the AutoChart Live capability.

The system packs quite an impressive array of fish finding functions. To begin with, it has three types of sonar: CHIRP DualBeam Plus, CHIRP Down Imaging and CHIRP Side Imaging. It’s capable of four frequencies: 50/83/200/455 kHz, but with the included transducer – the XNT 9 SI 180 T – it can only use 83/200 kHz for DualBeam Plus, and 455 kHz for Side Imaging and Down Imaging. In order to use the 50 kHz channel (with a CHIRP modulation of 28-75 kHz) you’ll need a 50 kHz capable transducer.

Evidently, since the new unit uses CHIRP technology, the sonar pulse can be modulated over a range of frequencies. The frequency ranges for 2D are 75-95 kHz and 175-225 kHz, in other words Mid Range CHIRP and High Range CHIRP. For Down Imaging and Side Imaging, the CHIRP modulation covers an interval between 420-520 kHz.

For DualBeam Plus, the transducer uses conical sonar beams, at angles of 20° (200 kHz) and 60° (83 kHz). For Side Imaging, the sonar beams are thin-shaped, not conical, with angles of 86°. Each SI beam extendes on the side of the boat at a distance of 240 ft (73 m), 480 ft (146 m) in total. For DI, the beam angles are also thin, but their coverage is not specified. The unit’s maximum depth capability is 1,500 ft (457 m), but this stands only for DualBeam Plus. SI and DI have depth capability of only 150 ft (45 m).

This unit can record and rewind sonar. It also offers a flasher mode for ice fishing, although the supplied transducer is a transom type, and not for ice fishing. SwitchFire, Fish ID+, Fish Alarms, Bottom Lock and other sonar related functions are also included.

When it comes to navigation functions, this unit is equipped with an internal Precision GPS module, and the UniMap charts, which cover the contiguous US coastline and inland lakes at 30 m / pixel. However, the HELIX 5 CHIRP SI GPS G2 is AutoChart Live capable. In other words, if it’s equipped with a LakeMaster, Navionics Gold or Zero Lines microSD card, you can draw the depth contours yourself, regardles the body of water where you’re fishing at. Also, it can store up to 2,750 waypoints, 47 routes and 50 tracks, with up to 20,000 points per track.

As the unit’s number suggests, it’s a 5-inch unit. Its pixel resolution is 800 x 480, with a 16-bit color range, and LED backlight. It doesn’t have Ethernet capabilities, but does have NMEA 0183 port and a microSD card reader with one slot, for software updates, chart upgrades, recordings or data transfer.

In all, it’s a great unit for small boats, even kayaks, offering great sonar for freshwater and saltwater. The system includes the transducer, which supports all the unit’s types of sonar. It also offers excellent navigation features and quite a bit of room for upgrades, all for a price under $500.

Humminbird Fish Finder HELIX 9 SI GPS Review

helix9-si-gps-combo

HELIX 9 SI GPS

December 2015 marks the launch of the HELIX 9 series by Humminbird, which actually replaces the 900 series. Evidently, one of the most complete unit of this new series is the HELIX 9 SI GPS. As it’s name suggests, it’s a unit that has Side Imaging, Down Imaging, GPS, and comes with the preloaded ContourXD maps.

In terms of sonar, the HELIX 9 SI GPS is pretty similar to the HELIX 7 SI GPS model. It comes with the XNT 9 SI 180 T transducer, which supports both SI and DI types of sonar that the unit is capable of. This transducer can only operate at 83/200/455 kHz though, being capable of scanning depths up to 150 ft (45 m) in SI and DI, and up to 1500 ft (457 m) in 2D.

In terms of coverage, this unit offers a 60° beam for the 83 kHz frequency, and 20° for the 200 kHz frequency. These beams are cone-shaped, and functional only with the 2D sonar. Side Imaging uses two cca 85° fan-shaped, thin beams on each side, offering a coverage of 240 ft (73 m) for each beam, a total of 480 ft (146 m) of coverage from side to side. This unit also has Down Imaging, which uses a thin, fan-shaped beam, similar to the side beams, but this one scans directly under the boat. Both SI and DI offer crystal clear imaging, close to the clarity of a photo, great to use for determining the shape of structure.

The transducer comes with a temperature sensor and a transom mount. It’s not usable for trolling, but you can have it replaced for free, via Humminbird transducer change program.

This unit has several other functions to be mentioned, when it come to sonar. First of all, it supports sonar recording, and you can also save snapshots if you want on a microSD card. It has SwitchFire, like all the other units with DualBeam Plus 2D sonar. Selective Fish ID+, Mark Structure, Split Zoom and many others are available. Also, it can support 360 Imaging, and can operate at 50 kHz for higher depths, of at 800 kHz for DI, but you’ll need a transducer that works with these frequencies as well. The one that comes with the unit, is not 50 kHz, nor 800 kHz capable.

For navigation, the HELIX 9 SI GPS offers the same Precision GPS as the other smaller units. However, it comes with the preloaded ControurXD maps, which offer more detail than the UniMap on the HELIX 5 and HELIX 7 units. It’s Navionics Platinum, Plus, Gold/HotMaps capable, though. It also can save up to 2,750 waypoints, 50 tracks (20,000 points each track) and 45 routes.

When it comes to the control unit’s features and functions, as its name suggests, it offers a 9″ display. Its pixel resolution is 800×480 and the screen superbright, with a 65,000 color spectrum, LED backlit and easy to read in bright light, even with polarized sunglasses. It has Ethernet, NMEA 0183 and NMEA 2000 connectivity. It can support AIS, i-Pilot Link and HD Radar, and features 2 microSD card slots.

Last but not least, one of the neat functions that the HELIX 9 SI GPS combo offers, is the wireless remote control, which allows you to control various functions on the unit from just about anywhere on your boat, such as mark waypoints, change sonar views, freeze frame etc.

Humminbird Fish Finder HELIX 5 CHIRP DI GPS G2 Review

helix-5-chirp-down-imaging-gps-g2

HELIX 5 CHIRP DI GPS G2

The HELIX 5 CHIRP DI GPS G2 is one of the new generation of units from Humminbird. As opposed to the older HELIX 5 DI GPS system, this one features CHIRP sonar technology and also has the AutoChart Live function.

In terms of sonar and navigation, this unit offers the same functions as the HELIX 5 CHIRP SI GPS G2. It’s equipped with the UniMap charts, which are basically the most basic charts that you can find in a Humminbird unit. However, they do cover the contiguous U.S. coastline and inland lakes and rivers at 30 m / pixel. The unit, on the other hand, is compatible with various other chart bundles that offer much more detail, such as LakeMaster, LakeMaster Plus, Navionics Gold, and Navionics Plus. Also, as opposed the older unit, this one is also compatible with SmartStrike fishing charts.

This is an AutoChart Live capable unit. It means it has this software built it, but in order to use it, the unit must use LakeMaster or Navionics charts. Or, you’ll have to equip the unit with a Zero Lines chart chip.

Evidently, the unit has built-in GPS, which enhances its fixes via WAAS, EGNOS, and MSAS. The unit can also save up to 2,750 waypoints, 47 routes, and 50 tracks, with up to 20,000 points per track.

When it comes to sonar, like all the new gen. Humminbird HELIX units, this one features CHIRP sonar technology. It can use 200/455 kHz for its DualBeam Plus sonar, and 455/800 kHz for its Down Imaging. But since it also has CHIRP, it can modulate the pulse between 420-520 kHz and 175-225 kHz, in order to provide clearer images with less clutter, a better definition of the fish targets and structure, and a better bottom reading.

The unit comes with the XNT 9 DI T transducer, which is CHIRP capable as well, and also temperature reading capable. With this transducer, the unit can scan depths up to 600 ft (183 m) with its DualBeam Plus sonar, and up to 350 ft (107 m) with its Down Imaging beams. In 2D, its coverage is not extraordinary, the beam angles being 16° and 28°. However, in DI the 455 kHz beam offers a coverage of 75°, while the 800 kHz has a 45° angle. The DI beams are not conical, though.

This unit also offers several useful sonar-related functions, such as Sonar Recording, Selective Fish ID+, SwitchFire, Flasher Sonar View for ice fishing, Fish Alarms, etc.

As its name suggests, this is a unit with a 5-inch display. Its pixel matrix is 800H x 480V, offering excellent clarity and color. The display is equipped with LED backlight for easy reading in bright light or at night. The unit is IPX7 waterproof, meaning that it can resist water splashes and even immersions.

Last but not least, the unit comes with a classic, gimbal mount. It has a microSD card reader with one port, for chart upgrades, sonar recording or software updates. Also, this is an NMEA 0813 capable unit.

Humminbird Fish Finder PiranhaMAX 4 DI Review

piranhamax 4 di - down imaging humminbird fish finder

PiranhaMAX 4 DI

The PiranhaMAX 4 DI is one of the newest fish finders from Humminbird for 2017. It’s also one of the most affordable units that has Down Imaging. However, as the title suggests, this is NOT a combo unit. Thereby it does not have GPS, charts or any other navigation functions. It’s a standalone fish finder.

Like most Humminbird fish finders, this PiranhaMAX 4 DI does come with a transducer. The box includes the XNT 9 DI T transducer, which is also temperature capable, as it integrates a temperature probe. This transducer comes with a transom mount, and can only be placed outside of the boat’s hull. In order to place it in-hull you will need to do some improvisations, which are not recommended; or simply replace the transducer.

This unit is capable of two frequencies, 200/455 kHz. It has two types of sonar, DualBeam (2D) and Down Imaging. For DualBeam, with the supplied transducer, the system can use two conical beams, with a coverage of 28° for 200 kHz, and 16° for 455 kHz. This unit does not have CHIRP technology like the HELIX 5 CHIRP DI GPS G2, therefore the sonar pulse uses only one frequency. Also, the 2D sonar is only DualBeam, not DualBeam Plus, therefore, the unit can only use one frequency at the time; it cannot use both 2D beams simultaneously.

For Down Imaging, with the included transducer, the unit can use one frequency, 455 kHz, and one razor-thin beam, not conical like for 2D. This beam however, offers a wider coverage, as it has an angle of 75°.

This fish finder system offers a depth capability of 600 ft for 2D and 320 ft for Down Imaging. It can maintain a bottom reading at a boat speed up to 20-30 MPH, but the recommended speed for clear images and a maximum of fish targets is up to 6 MPH.

This unit offers several other useful fish finding features. Among them we can count the Fish ID+ function, Real Time Sonar, Fish Alarm, Depth Alarm and Bottom Lock.

The unit itself is not a large one. It has a 4.3″ display, with a color spectrum of 256, and LED backlight for better reading even in direct sunlight. Its pixel layout is 480V x 272H. It doesn’t have a microSD card reader, nor NMEA or Ethernet connectivity. And finally, it comes with a classic tilt-swivel mount.

Humminbird Fish Finder HELIX 5 CHIRP GPS G2 Review

helix-5-chirp-gps-g2

HELIX 5 CHIRP GPS G2

The HELIX 5 CHIRP GPS G2 is one of the most affordable fish finder and chartplotter combos from Humminbird for 2017. It doesn’t include any fancy sonar features such as Side Imaging or Down Imaging, but as its name suggests, it does have CHIRP sonar technology.

Like all other Humminbird fish finders, this particular model comes with a transducer. The out-of-box transducer is the XNT 9 20 T, which is also temperature capable. This transducer is capable of 83/200 kHz, however, the unit is also 50 kHz capable, and can use a 50/200 kHz transducer for deep water fishing. With the supplied transducer, the system can reach depths of 1,500 ft, while with a 50 kHz capable transducer, it can scan depths up to 2,500 ft.

This unit has DualBeam Plus sonar, which means it can use both its 83 kHz and 200 kHz beams simultaneously, and you can view both returns in split screen. Also, since it uses CHIRP technology, it can modulate the sonar pulse over a range of frequencies between 75-95 kHz, and 175-225 kHz. The CHIRP modulation offers clearer images, with less clutter, with targets more focused and with a better separation in-between them.

This unit offers several sonar related functions, including Selective Fish ID+, sonar recording, fish alarms, bottom lock, RTS, flasher mode for ice fishing etc.

In terms of navigation, the unit is equipped with a highly fast and accurate internal GPS module. As support for navigation, it has the Humminbird UniMap charts, which cover the contiguous U.S. coastline, inland lakes and rivers at 30 m / pixel. Its charts can however be upgraded, the unit being compatible with Navionics Gold and Platinum+, LakeMaster, LakeMaster Plus, as well as SmartStrike.

One of the best innovations for this unit, which actually tells it apart from the older HELIX 5 GPS, is its AutoChart Live capability. This function is only usable if the unit has a LakeMaster of Navionics card chip which is not included. It’s a function that uses the 2D sonar information in order to reveal the depth contours of a body of water. Therefore, you can scan and map your local lake, in order to use the newest depth contours. Evidently, the unit can also use a Zero Lines card chip, designed specifically for AC Live.

This unit features a 5-inch display, 16-bit color, with a pixel resolution of 800×480. It’s also IPX7 waterproof and has LED backlight, for better reading possibilities even in direct sunlight. It’s equipped with a microSD card reader with one card slot. It does not have an Ethernet port, but does however have a NMEA 0813 output.

In all, it’s a unit great for fresh and saltwater, offering excellent navigation capabilities. And since it’s priced for less than $300, has CHIRP sonar, GPS, and comes with a transducer, it’s definitely a system with an excellent price and value ratio.

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