Best FishFinder Review 2021 by

Best Fish Finder Review & Buying Guide 2021

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Top 9 Best Fish Finder Reviews - 2021 Updated

For some, fishing may be a hobby that they pursue occasionally. However, for passionate fishermen, it is about adventure, exploring the sea, being around nature, and of course – catching fish. Every fisherman has a preferred fishing style that they are comfortable with – while some prefer a game of catch and release, others like to reel in open-water species like Tuna, Sharks, and Marlin.

The common aspect between hobbyists and professional fishermen is the use of fishing equipment that contributes towards making their experience better. Without proper equipment, the entire experience can become exhausting and may put you off from fishing for good. Some of the gear that fishermen must carry with themselves includes fishing rods, traps, nets, tackle, hooks, and lines.

Pertaining to technological advancement, another must-have is a fish finder. This is a sonar device that helps in sending pulses of sound waves down through the water. When these waves hit objects like fish, these objects are shown on the screen of your fish finder. This makes it easy for you to figure out where exactly to find the fish. Not to mention, it also makes your fishing experience safe and shows you any hurdles or obstacles that your boat may be nearing.

A good fish finder is as important as any other piece of equipment used for fishing. The effective response that you get from your finder allows you to see fish and the structures beneath your boat that you may not be able to see otherwise. However, it is important to conduct a thorough search before you settle upon buying a particular fish finder. Considering the different types of fish finders available in the market, a misstep in choosing the right finder can work against your experience.

Quite a few features are offered in different fish finders. As such, if you want to choose the best fish finder for the money, you must carefully consider your requirements and decide accordingly. There are features like the display resolution, transmission powers, frequencies, and more that vary from device to device. To clear your concepts regarding fish finders and to help you in choosing one that will be the most suitable for you, we have compiled the best depth finder reviews below. Read on to find out more!

Our Top 3 Best Depth Finder of 2021

Top Choice
Lowrance HOOK2 Fish Finder

  • GPS included
  • Affordable price
  • User-friendly interface
Best Price
Garmin Striker Plus 4 with Dual-Beam

  • Split-screen mode
  • IPX7 waterproof
  • Quickdraw Contours
Best Pick
Humminbird HELIX 5 SI/GPS Combo

  • Powerful transducer
  • Sonar recording
  • Gimbal mount included

Comparison Table of Fish Fisher Reviews 2021

Image Product Feature Price
Best Overall
Lowrance HOOK2 Fish Finder
• GPS included • Affordable price • User-friendly interface • Variety of display sizes Read More. Check On Amazon
Best Price
Garmin Striker Plus 4 with Dual-Beam
• User-friendly interface • Split-screen mode • IPX7 waterproof • Quickdraw Contours Read More. Check On Amazon
Best of Humminbird
Humminbird HELIX 5 SI/GPS Combo
• Powerful transducer • Sonar recording • Gimbal mount included • Offers Dual-Beam, Side and Down Imaging Read More. Check On Amazon
Best Wireless
Lowrance FishHunter PRO
• Compact unit • Difficult to submerge • Built-in LED light makes it easy to see in the dark • Has a FishHunter App which offers various features Read More. Check On Amazon
Best for Boat and Ice Fishing
Deeper PRO+
• 15 scans per second with Smooth Trolling feature • 330 feet casting range • Dual-beam scanning • Perfect for boat- and ice-fishing Read More. Check On Amazon
Best Display
HawkEye Fishtrax 1C Fish Finder
• VirtuView HD color display • Dual-beam intelligent sonar • LED backlighting • Ice-mode digital flasher Read More Check On Amazon
Best for Kayaks
Garmin STRIKER Plus 7sv
• Dual-frequency unit • Up to 5,000 waypoints • Numerous 2D sonar functions • IPX7 waterproof Read More. Check On Amazon
Best for Imaging
Raymarine Element 7HV
• Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity • IPX6 and IPX7 waterproof • Fast quad-core processor • LightHouse Sport OS offers a customizable, user-friendly interface Read More Check On Amazon
Best for Basics
Furuno FCV628
• RezBoost Technology provides CHIRP-like imaging • Flush mount included • IPX56 waterproof • Vertical display layout for a better view Read More Check On Amazon

Let's find out Best Fish Finders for Money 2021

Since the use of fish finders has now become common among fishermen, there are countless types of finders manufactured by brands. Each fish finder has its own set of specifications, price points, and characteristics that can help you in one way or the other. You must always keep your requirements in mind when choosing a finder if you want to make effective use of it. Here are some of the best depth finder reviews along with their pros and cons that can impact your fishing experience. Click on below product link for quick switch
  1. Lowrance HOOK2 Fish Finder – Best Overall
  2. Garmin Striker Plus 4 with Dual-Beam – Best Price
  3. Humminbird HELIX 5 SI/GPS Combo – Best of Humminbird
  4. Lowrance FishHunter PRO – Best Wireless
  5. Deeper PRO+ – Best for Boat and Ice Fishing
  6. HawkEye Fishtrax 1C Fish Finder – Best Display
  7. Garmin STRIKER Plus 7sv – Best for Kayaks
  8. Raymarine Element 7HV – Best for Imaging
  9. Furuno FCV628 – Best for Basics

Coming across a fish finder that performs as an all-rounder is not as common. However, with the Lowrance HOOK2, you are offered features that are not only distinct but also fulfill all your fishing requirements. Fishermen have claimed for the HOOK2 to be one of the best fish finders for its versatile features and characteristics being offered at a fairly low price. Not only does it come installed with all the basic, necessary features, it also offers other detailed features that are useful.

One of the most unique features this fish finder offers is the sonar coverage which is twice as much as what is generally found in similar fish finders. The sonar auto-tunes itself which saves you the time needed to fidget around the settings. This makes it convenient to use especially for beginner level fishermen. Apart from that, the HOOK2 is also equipped with GPS and allows fishermen to follow trails and find waypoints easily by marking them.

This fish finder comes in three different display sizes which include 5-inches, 7-inches, and 9-inches. It has IPX7 waterproof protection which keeps the finder safe from potential damage throughout your fishing trip. The power supply ranges from 10v minimum to 17v maximum, consuming 6.1W at a time. The HOOK2 has a transmission power of 200w rms Sonar. The operating frequency is 200kHz Wide Angle Sonar with a beam width of 40 degrees and depth of more than 80 meters. This helps in covering large areas to detect motion or objects.

Additionally, the HOOK2 also has a storage capacity of up to 100 routes and 3,000 waypoints along with a worldwide base map which allows you to find your hotspots easily. Moreover, it has front-dash and gimbal-bracket mounting for you to mount it whenever you like, especially if you are a boat owner and want to keep it in one place. Lowrance also offers a 1-year limited warranty in case of any issues.

Considering the wide variety of features included in the Lowrance HOOK2 Fish Finder, it is without a doubt that this is one of the best fish finders. Having a choice of different display sizes makes it an especially attractive option.


  • GPS included
  • Affordable price
  • User-friendly interface
  • Variety of display sizes


  • No wireless connection updates

While Garmin is a well-known brand when it comes to fish finders, they have outdone themselves with the release of Garmin Striker Plus 4 which comes with the dual-beam feature. The Striker 4 is a versatile finder that can easily fit in your pocket and can be carried around with ease from one place to another. It offers numerous features that can help fishermen in improving their fishing experience and enjoying it through and through.

For fishermen who own small boats or kayaks, the Striker 4 proves to be a particularly great choice considering the fairly low price it is offered at. While it may be but small and reasonably priced, the quality of the display is top-notch. It offers clear images with different screen modes that can be adjusted according to your preference. Moreover, it shows both sonar and GPS maps at the same time which eliminates the need to switch displays.

With the Striker 4, you can find out the temperature of the water with the temperature sensor. Additionally, it has multiple mounting options, but the size remains small enough so mounting or carrying are options you can choose between. Considering the size of the unit, this device has rather powerful depth capabilities and can be used offshore as well.

As for the specifications of the Striker 4, it has a 4.3-inch diagonal display which offers a resolution of 272 x 480 pixels while producing crystal-clear images with the help of Garmin Chirp Traditional Sonar. It has a split-screen mode which allows you to view two display windows in one screen. Apart from that, it offers features like Quickdraw Contours which lets you create and save maps with 1’ contours for approximately 2 million acres of surface.

Fishermen require a device that is not only convenient to use but also offers more features, all in a price that does not drill a hole in their pockets. That is why Garmin Striker Plus 4 is considered as one of the best fish finders for the money. It provides good value for money considering its rugged body and functionality.


  • User-friendly interface
  • Split-screen mode
  • IPX7 waterproof
  • Quickdraw Contours


  • Unit cover not included
  • No NMEA port

Humminbird is known to produce fish finders that are versatile. One of their premium creations is the HELX 5 SI/GPS which provides a great combination of features. These features help fishermen extensively in improving their fishing experience and making their investment in one of the best fish finders worthwhile. Although the HELIX 5 lacks a bit in terms of power as compared to other finders designed for kayakers, the long list of features it offers makes up well for it.

This specific model manufactured by Humminbird is classified as a top-tier, premium finder. The features it offers are rather useful for those with large vessels. As compared to the previous models designed by Humminbird, this one stands out and is one that most fishermen would want to invest in with complete reliance. From display to imagining and sonar types to its overall capabilities, the HELIX 5 offers quite a lot for fishermen regardless of their particular styles of fishing.

HELIX 5 is a great piece of equipment considering its display, which is a 5-inch backlit LED, which offers a wide view of anything underneath your boat. Apart from that, it offers dual-sonar features with the CHIRP digital sonar and DualBeam Plus Sonar. While the CHIRP sonar is designed to help you reach greater depth, the DualBeam Plus Sonar allows for you to easily combine two beams and see a detailed display while covering a great surface area.

Additionally, HELIX 5 is considered as the best fish finder 2021 owing to the fact that it is featured with SmartStrike. This feature allows for fishermen to find certain fish which are only found in particular areas depending on several factors. With the help of GPS, the device collects all the data and makes it easy to find the best fishing spots for specific types of fish. All you need to do is enter the information regarding the season, waterbody, and weather conditions, and the SmartStrike feature will locate the kind of fish you are looking for in a matter of seconds.


  • Powerful transducer
  • Sonar recording
  • Gimbal mount included
  • Offers Dual-Beam, Side and Down Imaging


  • AutoChart live not included
  • Limited depth capability for SI sonar

The Lowrance FishHunter PRO is one of the best fish finders as it offers the world’s fastest tri-frequency. While there are various manufacturers in the market that have worked towards designing castable/Wi-Fi finder, Lowrance has done an exceptional job with the FishHunter PRO. This model offers a wide range of features for the fisherman who prefer both land- and ice-fishing.

This can be called the best fish finder since it is equipped with game-changing capabilities and allows fishermen to have a fishing experience like never before. The best feature of this device is the tri-frequency transducer which rotates between 3 different frequencies and displays the highest possible resolution on the screen.

Apart from that, the FishHunter PRO offers a Wi-Fi range of 150 feet which is why it is one of the best in the wireless category. Due to this range of Wi-Fi, you can cover a great area with speed 4 times faster than other similar models. It also offers Bluetooth connectivity as that requires no internet connection. For fishermen looking specifically for portable Wi-Fi fish finders, the FishHunter PRO is easily the best fish finder pertaining to its exceptional features.

The size of this finder is quite compact, weighing approximately 180 grams. It is generally compared with the size of a tennis ball. The FishHunter PRO offers a temperature sensor that ranges between -22-degree Fahrenheit and 95-degree Fahrenheit while covering a maximum depth of 160 feet. Also, the frequency range covered by this finder ranges between 381 kHz to 475 kHz which makes it the perfect device for those who fish for recreational purposes.

Other features in the FishHunter PRO include an integrated GPS which allows you to easily make your way from the dock to your favorite fishing spots. Most importantly, this finder can easily connect with your phone, whether you use and Android or iOS, and gives up to 10 hours of battery life with one complete charge.


  • Compact unit
  • Difficult to submerge
  • Built-in LED light makes it easy to see in the dark
  • Has a FishHunter App which offers various features


  • Requires a smartphone to connect

Another one on our list of best fish finders is the Deeper PRO+ which is highly recommended for fishermen who prefer boat and ice fishing. This device has been designed to be handheld and offers portability to fishermen. It eliminates the need for a boat with a fixed transducer and allows all types of fishermen to work with the sonar technology in the hope of catching a particular type of fish. This is undoubtedly the best fish finder for land-based as well as kayak anglers who want to improve their reeling.

All you need to do with this device is to connect it to your phone and let the fish finder scan the bottom of your boat. It displays the transmission of sonar data straight to the screen of your smartphone with the help of Wi-Fi. The device has its own application that can easily be downloaded from the app store of your phone. It can help you in making your fishing experience better with different features which makes it easy to identify structures and types of fish.

Deeper PRO+ is equipped with the highest-castable sonar owing to which fishermen can cast further while scanning deeper as well. It has an in-built GPS that allows you to create bathymetric maps straight from the shore and enjoy access to a lake book as well as Deeper’s bathymetric management platforms. These platforms allow you to save and review all the maps from any device while sitting in the comfort of your home. Additionally, it has solid connectivity which syncs with any of your devices using their hotspot connection which eliminates the requirement of having a separate internet device.

With a Wi-Fi range of 330 feet, you can fish with an uninterrupted connection on your iOS or Android devices. This finder lasts for about 6 hours at a time with a single charge and continuous usage. Moreover, the size of it is 2.5-inches and it weighs approximately 100g which makes it super lightweight and easy to transport from one place to another. You can easily mark your waypoints and visit them later without wasting time, as this finder has a built-in GPS and offers great convenience.


  • 15 scans per second with Smooth Trolling feature
  • 330 feet casting range
  • Dual-beam scanning
  • Perfect for boat- and ice-fishing


  • Requires a smart device (tablet or phone)

Considering the various types of portable fish finders that are available in the market, there is always a tradeoff between the features. While they may offer one of the best features from a certain category, they will probably lack in the other. You can find plenty of clunky, portable fish finders which need to be connected to a phone to be used which cuts down the reception or SONAR quality. However, with the HawkEye FishTrax 1C, there is no compromise between the features and the quality offered by them.

HawkEye has launched similar models previously but the all-new 1C is a device that is equipped with all the features that are suitable for beginners as well as professional anglers. Being one of the most powerful units within the FishTrax Series, this device is packed with premium standard offerings in a compact unit. As such, this device is the best fish finder in terms of not only its features but also its size and weight as well.

The FishTrax 1C has specifications that make it stand out amongst other fish finders. These specifications include the intelligent sonar which helps in getting precise readings for up to 240 feet. Apart from that, it has the VirtuView HD color display which is in fact one of its greatest features – it offers a glare-free view for better readability with the help of an LED backlight. The sonar feature of this device can be trolled, mounted, and even floated which is unmatchable in terms of portability.

Additionally, it offers the FishArc and FishID features which help you with targeting fish using HD booting landscape imaging. This feature operates on an algorithmic software which eliminates the potential of false readings and sounds an audible fish alarm to alert you when there is a presence of fish near you. Moreover, it comes with an ice-flasher mode which allows you to see the results in a circle shape along with different colors to indicate how soft or hard an object possibly is.

For fishermen who love a crystal-clear display and regularly engage in kayak- or shore-fishing, the HawkEye FishTrax 1C is one of the best fish finders they will come across. Considering the all-inclusive features in a tiny pack and a price that is unmatchable with other finders of similar type and category, this is a great option to go for.


  • VirtuView HD color display
  • Dual-beam intelligent sonar
  • LED backlighting
  • Ice-mode digital flasher


  • Unit cover not included

Another one of Garmin’s STRIKER Series is the Plus 7sv which is a great combination of a finder and a GPS, putting all other finders to rest. In the category of innovative big-screen finders, the Plus 7sv is an optimal finder that provides an exceptional experience to anglers. This device is considered as the best fish finder for 2021 considering its large list of features. These features are great for all types of fishermen who prefer different fishing styles and are looking to add convenience to their fishing routine.

Although Garmin STRIKER Plus 7sv falls under the list of affordable fish finders, it is not to be mistaken for one that fulfills only basic requirements. As a matter of fact, anglers have claimed for this specific device to be offering the latest innovative technology that updates with time and consistently helps in improving their performance. The device is highly capable and comes with built-in maps that are a great source of help.

Apart from that, it has a bright display of 7-inches which is perfectly readable in the broad daylight along with an easy-to-use interface which works great for novice as well as pro anglers. Additionally, the high sensitivity GPS works well with the Garmin CHIRP Traditional Sonar, the CHIRP ClearVU as well as CHIRP SideVU Scanning Sonars. The device creates 1’ live contours of the surface area that is beneath or around the boat and covers approximately 2 million acres.

Moreover, the STRIKER Plus 7sv has built-in wi-Fi which allows you to easily access the finder’s ActiveCaptain App. The app can be paired with any of your smart devices to communicate with the Quickdraw Contours Community and transfer your waypoints while also receiving update notifications for the software. Also, it is IPX7 waterproof device and the structure is rugged enough to withstand harsh water conditions. Another feature added to this finder is the boat-speed display which keeps you well-informed about your pace.

With a wide variety of features being provided in one fish finder, fishermen with all levels of fishing skills can make great use of this feature. The reason why this finder is considered as the best fish finder for 2021 is owing to its easy-to-use advanced characteristics that offer value for money.


  • Dual-frequency unit
  • Up to 5,000 waypoints
  • Numerous 2D sonar functions
  • IPX7 waterproof


  • Limited networking options
  • Waypoints can only be copied from Garmin devices

With the easy-to-use interface of the 7HV from Raymarine’s Element Series, fishermen can now have an upper hand. This fishing equipment can help them in making their fishing experience fun and convenient. With the 7-inch optically-bonded LCD screen, offering a resolution of 800 x 480 pixels, anglers get a bright appearance of images on the screen throughout their trip whether it is at night or during broad daylight.

Element 7HV can easily be classified as a top-tier fish finder due to the numerous features it offers which are great for beginners as well as professional anglers. These features include a single channel high CHIRP sonar that is built-in. Apart from that, it offers down imaging with the DownVision Sonar, side imaging with the SideVision Standard- and Hyper-Sonar and also a third type of imagining – i.e. the RealVision 3D which allows for the display on the screen to be as good as real.

While this finder is great for all types of anglers, its main focus is on inland and coastal fishermen as it delivers lifelike sonar imaging. This feature is one of the most unique ones to be found in an affordable unit like this one, as otherwise it is offered generally in high-end Axiom units. Additionally, this device also offers maps and chart-plotting which is supported by Raymarine LightHouse NC2, Navionics, as well as CMAP. For those who want to create custom charts can work with the Navionics SonarChart Live which is compatible with this finder.

Although the Element 7HV cannot be connected with a network, it offers 2 Element Display which can be linked through Sea Talking in order to sync waypoints. This finder is an excellent choice for those who are on a budget and do not require a touch screen or advanced features for their fishing excursion. For those who want a bigger screen, the same model is available in 2 more display sizes which are 9-inch and 12-inch. The features are the same and all the models can be bracket- or surface-mounted easily.


  • Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity
  • IPX6 and IPX7 waterproof
  • Fast quad-core processor
  • LightHouse Sport OS offers a customizable, user-friendly interface


  • No circular clasher sonar view
  • Does not support 83 kHz and 50 kHz sonar

For anglers looking for something traditional and basic, the Furuno FCV628 can prove to be the best fish finder for them. This unit eliminates the unnecessary features and is a sonar-only finder which offers dual-frequency traditional sonar. The sonar is powered by Furuno’s unique RezBoots Technology making it a distinct finder as compared to others you can find in the market. This finder does not offer any sort of sonar-scanning, like side- or down-imaging, however it shines prominently in deep water which is why anglers consistently take advantage of this finder.

The Furuno FCV628 offers some decent features which include the sonar with an operating frequency of 50 kHz and 200 kHz. Anglers can choose to use both sonar beams simultaneously with the help of the split-screen feature which allows you to view and make comparison between returns. Along with that, it has range scale of 6.5 to 3937 feet. However, the depth capability depends upon the transducer that is being used and whether it is compatible with the respective model.

Additionally, this finder offers multiple control features like a 5.7-inch diagonal display that has a vertical layout and offers a resolution of 480 x 640 pixels. The color of the display is TFT with a backlit LED. Along with that, the device is IPX56 waterproof which allows for it to withstand harsh weather and water conditions quite easily without any issues. Also, this is a keypad-operated unit which offers navigation through menus. The functions equipped in the device can be exclusively used through the control given on the right side of the device.

The Furuno FCV628 is classified as a standalone unit as it does not feature any navigation tools like GPS or chart-plotting options. However, its revolutionary RezBoost and ACCUFISH features makes it worth buying. Although the device does not come with a transducer, fisherman considers it great for deep-sea fishing owing to its 50 kHz capability.


  • RezBoost Technology provides CHIRP-like imaging
  • Flush mount included
  • IPX56 waterproof
  • Vertical display layout for a better view


  • No GPS/charts
  • Transducer is not included


When choosing a fish finder, it is always important to consider your own requirements as the first and foremost priority. You do not want to end up making the mistake of investing in a finder that proves to be ineffective for you. This article contains the top 9 fish finder reviews along with how they can benefit your fishing adventures whether you are a beginner or have been an angler for a while now. Out of the top 9, we have a few recommendations considering the price points, features, and specifications that are offered by each of the finders.

For fishermen who want the best fish finder, we consider the Lowrance HOOK2 Fish Finder a great all-rounder. A fish finder is meant to serve all your requirements while being light on the pocket which is exactly what the HOOK2 offers. After that, we believe the Humminbird HELIX 5 SI/GPS Combo is one of its own kind. Out of all the Humminbird Fish Finders, this is considered as the premium choice of anglers and the features that this finder offers proves why that is so. Moving on to our next recommendation, the HawkEye Fishtrax 1C Fish Finder is a finder that offers some of the greatest features and aids in making your experience all the more enjoyable.

That being said, not every fish finder suits every angler. You need to keep several factors in mind and choose one accordingly.

List Of Best Fish Finder Reviews 2021 (Jan Updated)

  1. Lowrance HOOK2 Fish Finder – Best Overall
  2. Garmin Striker Plus 4 with Dual-Beam – Best Price
  3. Humminbird HELIX 5 SI/GPS Combo – Best of Humminbird
  4. Lowrance FishHunter PRO – Best Wireless
  5. Deeper PRO+ – Best for Boat and Ice Fishing
  6. HawkEye Fishtrax 1C Fish Finder – Best Display
  7. Garmin STRIKER Plus 7sv – Best for Kayaks
  8. Raymarine Element 7HV – Best for Imaging
  9. Furuno FCV628 – Best for Basics

Your Guide to Buying the Best Depth Finder

When choosing a fish finder, quite a few thoughts are bound to cross your mind in terms of your requirements. Considering the various types of fish finders available in the market, it can be confusing to choose one pertaining to the fact that each finder has its own set of pros and cons.

Whether you are a first-time buyer or a passionate angler looking to upgrade your fishing gear, this article explains the important features in detail to make it easy for you to select an apt finder. By knowing all about the features you should look out for, you will be able to make more of an informed decision. This might save you from the disappointment of making the wrong purchase and wasting your money.

Display Size and Resolution

Some of the most important specifications to check in a fish finder are the size of the display and the resolution it offers. To ensure you get a clear display, whether you like fishing during broad daylight or at night, you need to consider the number of pixels your chosen model offers as it will greatly influence that clarity you get. If you want a sharper display, opt for a model that offers plenty of pixels. Similarly, the size of the display matters depending on whether you want a big or small view.

Best Fish Finder Display TheOceanScan

Power Wattage

The power wattage of any fish finder is solely dependent on how you want to use the finder. Every electrical appliance operates on power and fish finders are no different – they have a certain capacity of wattage they work with. The higher the wattage, the better the functioning of your finder would be. Choosing a fish finder with optimal wattage will offer faster sonar waves, and the results you see on your display will appear faster as compared to finders with lower power wattage. However, for those who like fishing in shallow waters, a low-power fish finder will work just fine.

Best Fish Finder Power Wattage

GPS Functionality

When you are out in the deep waters, it is of high importance to have an effective GPS system in your fish finder. Not only will this feature help you in finding great hotspots and waypoints, but it can also help you in marking where you came from and how to make your way back to the dock. Since GPS allows you to denote your favorite fishing spots, you can return to these spots any time of the year without having to waste time looking for new spots each time you go fishing.

Best Fish Finder GPS Functionality

Mounting Option

If you are already a boat owner, then having a fish finder that you can fix in your boat will work for you. However, if you are an angler that opts for rental boats often, a fish finder that allows quick-release and adjustment is what will work for you. This way you will not need to fumble with your finder each time you want to dismount it. You can also carry it easily. Fish finders that are easy to take off work great in terms of transportation from one boat to another easily.

Best Fish Finder Mounting


Another feature that helps in viewing anything that is under or on the sides of your boat is through imaging. There are two types of imaging features, Side Imaging and Down Imaging. Fish finders come with either one of the imaging features or both, depending on the model you have chosen.

Side Imaging

With the help of the side imaging feature, you can get a clear display of any motion that takes place on the sides of your boat in the form of brightly visible objects and shadows. You can identify the object underneath your boat according to the types of shadows that appear on your display. If the shadow is long, it means that the object present is tall. If there is a fish underneath your boat, you can see it in the water column of your display.

Down Imaging

For those who want a clear, glass-like image of what is happening underneath their boat, the Down Imaging feature can prove to be extremely useful. Fish finders that offer this feature allow you to directly look down with the high-frequency waves that cut right through the water and provide you with a clear image on the display screen. You can clearly tell apart the difference between structures and fish which helps you reel in a good catch quite conveniently.

Side Imaging and Down Imaging Fish Finder

Cone Angle

With the help of the cone angle feature, you can easily determine the area of the surface that is covered by your transducer. The wider or larger your cone angle is, the great area coverage it will offer. Transducer beams or cone angles vary according to the fish finder device you have chosen. An example of the cone angle is a 200 kHz transducer providing either a wide 20-degree or a narrow 12-degree cone angle.

Best Fish Finder Cone Angle

Temperature Gauge

As fish are cold-blooded animals, their behavior is dependent on the temperature of the water. Lakes mostly have different levels of water which is why some parts may be warmer than others. The point where these levels and layers meet is called thermocline and beyond the thermocline is where you can find the bigger fish. The difference between thermoclines can be displayed on the fish finder through the temperature gauge feature. The higher the temperature is, the denser the thermocline will appear on the screen.

Type of Fish Finder

You can find various types of fish finders. Each fish finder offers functions that are different from each other. Some of these types include


If you want an economical choice, standalone fish finders are a great choice, especially if you have a mid-sized boat and prefer fishing on inland lakes. These types of finders allow for an effective display of what is happening around your boat.


As compared to other broadband features, the CHIRP transducers installed in fish finders allow for a much lengthier pulse that offers more than 50 times of pulse energy. The transmission created by the CHIRP helps in creating pulses through the water.

Ice Fish Finder

Fishermen who like fishing throughout the year, even when the water turns to ice, can do so with the help of ice fish finders. These finders can flash through the water to provide a display graph of what happens under the boat and receive a real-time image as well.

Best Fish Finder – Frequently Asked Questions

Do you really need a fish finder?

If you want to eliminate the hassle of waiting to see fish, then you do need a fish finder. With the help of this device, you can see directly through the depths of water and have the fish images appear right on your display screen. The knowledge of types and size of fish will guide you with regards to the kind of techniques that are most likely to work.

What to look for in a fish finder?

When choosing a fish finder as a beginner, if you want to avoid complicated systems, you can choose a finder that offers the basic functions. Some of those functions include the GPS, to help guide you to and from the fishing spot, and a high-contrast display for you to be able to see the screen with clarity at any time. Furthermore, there is the cone angle which can help you in determining the surface area covered by your transducer.

Are portable fish finders any good?

Since portable fish finders use sonar technology to detect anything that is underneath your boat, it can help you in determining the size of fish, regardless of whether they are big or small. One of the greatest benefits of a portable fish finder is that it can be easily transported. Fishermen who rent boats do not need to mount them and can use them easily on different boats.

How deep do fish finders go?

A standard fish finder device can go as deep as 10,000 feet. However, the depth completely depends on the brand or model of the finder you have chosen. The more advanced features it is equipped with, the deeper it will go.

Are fish finders worth the money?

Keeping in mind your usage frequency, the worth of fish finder is only truly explored when you make proper use of it. While some fishermen do not believe that finders are useful, others consider it an essential device in their fishing equipment. It fastens the process and offers the convenience of being able to see through the water. This greatly improves your fishing experience and may therefore be worth the money.

What kHz to use on a fish finder?

The frequency at which a standard fish finder operates ranges between 15 kHz to 20 kHz. However, most of the traditional fish finders, which are manufactured solely for recreational purposes, operate on frequencies starting from 50 kHz and go up to as much as 200 kHz.

Is CHIRP better than sonar?

While a traditional sonar-finder would transmit about one percent of the time, a CHIRP sonar transmits ascending pulses 10 times lengthier in duration. With the help of CHIRP sonars, more energy can be put into the water column.

How long will a fish finder battery last?

Depending on your usage and the kind of fish finder you have bought, the ideal time for a fish finder using about 2amps is around 50 hours. However, if you are not certain about your trip’s duration, an extra set of batteries can help you.

Check out all the other fishing gear article put together by the expert team here at The Ocean Scan

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