There was a time not long ago when being a successful fisherman often was a matter of by guess and by golly. Even being an expert with a lot of knowledge about how fish operate could lead even the best fisherman astray. Not anymore.
Today there are fish finders, modern electronic hunters that can not only show you where fish are, but where you are in relation to them. In fact, they can often predict for you what you are trying to catch and what best to bait them with. The biggest problem with fishfinders is that they are not “one size fits all,” which means you still have to know a little about what you are after before you can select a good one. Giving you what you need to know is the function of this article.
How to Choose the Best Fish Finder
Today’s fish finders are much more than just sonars in a box. Instead, they have several complicated devices in one box. These include, most notably:
A transducer is that part of the unit that sends signals from the equipment and receives signals back. For your unit to work well for you, you need to have a transducer that is properly configured for where you are. If you are in a small body of water, a wider scan is best. If you are in a deeper body of
The higher the frequency that your fishfinder operates at, the more detail it will pick up. This is great, but can also be confusing when you are fed back too much information about what is under you.
A huge key to the effectiveness of your fishfinder is the display, which is the link between the equipment and you. Most displays are color, which can make a huge difference in interpretation of the data shown. Screen size and their resolution are important factors in picking the fishfinder that is best for you. The larger the screen is you are working with, the easier it is to pinpoint where the fish are that you have spotted. This is because you are less likely to confuse real fish with jumbles of other data that has found its way to your screen.
Obviously, the more powerful your unit is in terms of wattage, the faster your fishfinder can operate processing information and giving it to you. As a rule of thumb, fishfinders can give you readings of up to 400 feet for every 100 watts. Better yet, many fishfinders operate at several frequencies, so what starts out good can get even better.
The best fish finders have GPS capabilities as well. This combines the ability to find fish with your ability to navigate. This has several advantages since you don’t need to worry about where you are as well as finding fish. The other plus is that once you find a good fishing spot, you can find it again on another trip if you want to.
Fish finders scan in one of two ways. They either side scan or down scan. Both are great, but with down scan you miss whatever might be swimming past you on the side. On the other hand, side scan radar can cover vast amounts of water, but they miss a lot of detail.
One feature of fish finders that a lot of people miss is portability. This is because they usually consider what kind of fishing they plan to do, but not how they plan to do it. As has been stated earlier, the bigger your screen the easier it is to use the data, but a big screen might not be the best choice for a weekend trip on a rented boat.
Design and Durability
This might be considered a catch-all phrase for all of the other points you want to consider when selecting a fish finder. This includes price and other factors. The point is, however, that selecting a fish finder that is best for you is largely a matter of considering everything as a whole, and when you consider everything taken together, and select equipment that puts the same emphasis on features as you like them, the better your chances are that you will end up selecting the equipment that is best for your needs.