Finding fish is a task that can be simplified these days. You just get a powerful fish finder, and this ordeal is no more.
But the story doesn't end just there. A fish finder still has a step-up.
Some manufacturers today have combined this device with a GPS function so that it can do more than just tracking fish. The best fish finder GPS combo is one of the highlights of modern fishing. This particular amenity, in some way, can surpass even the finest standard fish finders because of its extra functionality.
Whether you are into hobby fishing or commercial fishing, fishfinder GPS combos can really give a boost in your performance. From mapping your location down to saving points, this device can do it all.
In this post, I will highlight some of the top-rated fishfinder GPS combo units that have been ever released on the market. If you are interested in getting one for your fishing kayak, you might want to check out the list below.
See all of them now!
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- Best Fish Finder GPS Combo On The 2019 Market
- How To Choose The Best Fish Finder GPS Combo
- Bottom Line
Best Fish Finder GPS Combo On The 2019 Market
1. Humminbird HELIX 5 Fish Finder - Editor's Pick
2. Deeper PRO+ Smart Sonar - Runner-Up
3. Garmin Striker Plus 4 with Dual-Beam Transducer - Budget-Friendly Pick
4. Garmin Echomap Chirp 94SV With Transducer - Premium Choice
I always find the Humminbird HELIX 5 Fish Finder an excellent fishfinder with GPS capabilities. It is a perfect tool that can be engaged in open vessels like kayaks because of its rugged and waterproof construction. This device has an extensive display screen which features full colors and unyielding responsiveness. All the information that you want to know below is displayed correctly on the screen.
The built-in CHIRP Digital Sonar and Imaging Sonar of this fish finder enabled it to become a powerful machine for scanning the best areas to fish and hunt targets. It has a broad coverage, meaning that it will give you a grasp to what's below your boat. Interestingly, a variety of information can be displayed on this finder such as terrain, the objects below, and even the water depth.
The Deeper PRO+ Smart Sonar is an innovation in the world of fish finders. It is a highly versatile fish finder that features a wireless design for more convenient use. You can also cast it on the water, which makes it more effective in finding fish. Specifically, it can cast up to 330 feet. Professionals commonly use this unit because of the intuitive functionalities that it provides.
Meanwhile, the scanning depth of this device is pretty extensive. It can go down as far as 260 feet. A set of dual-beam sonars ensure that there are no spots that will be missed. With this, spotting fish would never be a problem. The GPS system of this device allows it to create bathymetric maps from the shore down to the water. More impressive than this is the fact that it can generate its own Wi-Fi signal so that the sonar can connect the central unit easily.
Most of the Garmin fish finders have GPS capabilities. One good example of this is the Garmin Striker Plus 4. This one is designed with a highly sensitive GPS that can help you locate and mark your position in the water. The GPS creates waypoints to different routes. It is a useful feature if you are fishing in the same location all the time. You don't need to guess anymore where the fish usually gather on your next fishing sessions.
Of course, the Striker Plus 4 has the CHIRP sonar. With this component, you can guarantee that this compact fish finder can create crystal-clear and highly defined images. You can immediately identify the fish from its environment and the objects around them. There is also the Quickdraw Contours that allows the device to have a map-drawing feature. Specifically, it can store up to two million acres of terrain, which is a fantastic feat.
If you want a powerful unit that you can install on your fishing vessel, I recommend that you get the Echomap Chirp 94SV. This one is available in different sizes. But definitely, you can always get the same performance from them.
This device features a multi-colored display for better data reading. Accessing the controls are pretty easy, thanks to the keypad interface that is placed on its central unit. The finesse of this fishfinder GPS combo is due to the presence of a transducer with CHIRP and CHIRP ClearVu/SideVu sonars. These are the ones that ensure that the fish finder can scan and map the water below you without missing anything.
Furthermore, the Echomap Chirp 94SV is preloaded with various coastal charts in the US. Such a feature simplify the task of examining the terrain that you want to fish, especially if you are fishing within the jurisdiction of this country.
One of the most ergonomic and user-friendly fish finders out there is the Lowrance HOOK2 7. It comes with different features that simplify its use. It has an auto-tuning sonar that does most of the work for you. It has a simple interface, too, which allows amateurs to use it perfectly. You don't have to fuss over its settings because they are already configured for your convenience.
The power of the Lowrance HOOK2 7 is definitely something that you would want to be present in your fishing arsenals. This one has a broad and extensive sonar coverage. The CHIRP sonars function pretty smoothly without any delays. The turnover of data to the central unit is quite fast. All the essential information that you want to see, such as the depth, temperature, and the topography are displayed on this fish finder.
How To Choose The Best Fish Finder GPS Combo
If you are a first-timer, the technical aspects that revolve around a fishfinder GPS combo may come confusing. As you have seen in the previous section, each of the fish finders that are on the market today has different designs and specifications. Spotting their similarities is quite tricky unless you dissect them. Trust me. I have been in that situation in the past.
Fortunately, there are some standards that you and I can adhere when it comes to choosing a fish finder with GPS. Some construction styles, components, and functionalities should be present in a fish finder so that it could become useful in your day-to-day fishing adventures. Even if you are using a kayak for fishing, these guidelines still apply.
Let's explore some of them now.
Keep in mind that a fish finder without a transducer is not a good option. In fact, without this component, the fish finder won't work properly.
The role of the transducer is quite simple. They send sonar waves down below to scan the surroundings and all the objects on them. After the sonar hit the ground, it will bounce back to the transducer. It will give the data that it got from scanning. All the information taken is processed and displayed to the central device.
Basically, the function of a transducer represents the fish finder in a nutshell. From the sonar waves to the creation of pictures, this particular component is directly involved.
Many transducers can be installed in the boat through a variety of mounts. The most user-friendly for me is the transom mount. The latter works for kayaks and other smaller watercraft. If you have a bigger vessel, you might want to try hull mounts. They are more effective in such kind of setup.
What Is A Good Transducer Anyway?
Now, it is pretty crucial that you can determine how the transducer was built. You need to inspect the material that has been used on this item. In this way, you will be able to know if you have a transducer that you can rely on all the time.
For hobbyists, there's nothing wrong if the transducer that they got has been ensconced in a plastic transom. It is compatible with different types of boats. Given that you will only use the fish finder for recreational purposes, plastic transoms should already be enough.
Meanwhile, if the boat that you have has a wooden or fiberglass hull, it is imperative that the transducer of the fish finder GPS combo is using a bronze housing. Such a construction can help them work better and avoid being damaged while fishing on rough waters. Also, if the vessel that you have steel or aluminum hull, what you need is a transducer with stainless steel housing.
Check this video on how some anglers install their fish finders easily:
One of the most important considerations in choosing a fishfinder GPS combo is the cone angle. From its name alone, you can already get an idea as to what it refers to.
Specifically, a cone angle is the one that indicates the extent of scan that a fish finder can provide. It is the breadth of the beam that has been emitted by the fish finder from your boat down to the water.
Of course, if the beam is wide, the more area that it can cover. On the flip side, a narrow beam has an opposite effect. Some people think that transducers that can produce wide beams are always the best. However, that's not always true. The more the cone angle expands, the more it loses its sensitivity, especially if has reached extensive depths.
The ideal fish finder should have transducers that can release cone angles that range from 9 degrees to no more than 60 degrees. Any in-between should work for you, especially if you are fishing for fun and recreation.
The quality of a fish finder is also dependent on how it can visualize its findings. The sonar prowess of a fish finder becomes useless if it cannot be rendered into a proper visual representation. That's where the screens come into play.
The display screen of a fish finder varies into two types: colored and black-and-white. Right now, the most ergonomic option that you have are fish finders with colored displays. They are the ones that can help you assess all the information being shown. The colors allow proper distinctions of the fish and the surrounding that they are dwelling. You don't have to be confused at all because their readability is made for every level of anglers out there.
A black-and-white screen still works. However, there's a limit as to what it can do and what it can display. The biggest upside that they have is their affordability. It makes them an excellent choice for those who don't want to spend much on their fish finders.
Here is a guide that will help you navigate through your fish finder:
Lastly, I want you to pick a fishfinder GPS combo based on its power. Right now, it is the power of the fish finder that defines its performance and quality. For instance, a device that has fast and extensive scanning requires high-wattage. Those fish finders that have low wattage are slow and limited. They only work on shallow waters.
The transducer cannot work fast if it doesn't have enough power source. You need it to be supplied with extensive juice so that it can operate when and where you need it. Of course, it is entirely okay to have a moderately powered fish finder if you are just fishing in shallow waters. Other than that, you need a high-octane fishfinder GPS combo already.
Extra: Check out this link if you have some problems with your fish finder.
As you can see, fish finders GPS combos have different specifications. But with this post, I am hoping that you can find the best fish finder GPS combo for you. The selection that I made should give you an idea of what to look for whenever it is your time to hit the shop. You can also use my guide to get a further understanding of how this thing really works.
Keep in mind that a fish finder is an essential amenity in your kayaking checklist. Make sure that it is included in your setup whenever you are fishing with your kayak!
That's it for now. For questions related to kayaking and fishing tools, drop them in the comment section below.