Fish finders/GPS

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walleyedevil's picture
walleyedevil
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Fish finders/GPS

I am looking for a reasonable fish finder/GPS combo. I have a Lowrance X-15 and I have had nothing but problems with it. Some of my friends also own Lowrance fish finders and they too have had many problems. A few of the local salesmen at the sporting goods stores have told me that most of the returned electronics are made by Lowrance. I just want a quality product that will work longer that the factory warranty states. I have looked into the Hummingbird 700 series and a few of the Garmins, but I just can't decide. I would like to find a good fish finder that accepts a memory card and also has a good GPS system. I just don't want to spend $800 plus. I am not on here to bash Lowrance, but just want some positive feedback fome some guys that really know their electronics. Thanks!

Auggie1415's picture
Auggie1415
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Joined: 9/13/05

I work at a retail store and have had very little problems with Lowrances. I'm sure you were asked how was it mounted and what problems have had with it? I am a fan of the new humminbirds. The side view would be an awesome feature. They do take chips. The problem is the convenience of getting chips for lowrance/eagles.

Hail the Bison!
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ndcarpshooter's picture
ndcarpshooter
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Joined: 11/22/05

I use lowrance electronics and never had any complaints, but if I had to look else where I would go with Garmin.

disco's picture
disco
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Bought a Lowrance 334c GPS/Finder last spring. Finder works great but the internal GPS antenna is a piece. It takes forever to lock in and will lose position randomly during use. I know it was an issue they are aware of and it is fixable you but may want to do some research and ask the salesman if that is still an issue. Maybe just needs an external antenna. The place we bought it has agreed to take it back for exchange. Going with a straight finder and a handheld GPS so I can use the GPS all year.

I was also told by the sales man that another company is in the process buying Lowrance but have not been able to google anything on that.

Horsager's picture
Horsager
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It only stands to reason that most of the fishfinder troubles would be from Lowrance units in this region. They must have 80+% of the market. X-15's were prone to some transducer troubles at first but that seems to be fixed. Get on Lowrance's website and do all the updates for your unit, that'll solve most of your troubles. You might also need to replace the original transducer, but overall the X-15 is a great unit. If you're totally fed up with the fishfinder portion you could just use your X-15 as a stand-alone GPS (so you can continue to use the good regional chips) and buy whatever tickles your fancy for a fishfinder. Trouble with your unit is if you have the GPS combo it probably cost you $800+ and Cabela's is selling brand new X-15's for just over $400 and the antenna's are worth about $75. All that means the cost for a used unit is quite low. If you could get $250 for the whole works I'd say you've done well.

This moment is a paradox, it's the oldest you've ever been as well as the youngest you'll ever be.



walynut's picture
walynut
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I have ran lowrance / eagle forever, no real problems BUT the latest boat I purchased (Ranger) came with humminbird electronics throughout. I was hesitant at the least. The dealer said to give them a try since minkota owns them now. They have made many changes. They said they would swap them out if they didn't perform up to my standards. They have worked awesome and I have kept them. CAUTION though, check for the availability of chips for the GPS prior to purchasing the unit. There was one out there that did not have chip capability that covered Devils lake. I swapped that unit out and the new one handles the right chips. Other nice feature is you can mount extra base stations throughout the boat and just move the head around, very easy and no wires to connect. My .02

 

Good Luck and Good Fishin'

Eric T

solocam's picture
solocam
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Joined: 12/2/05

I use nothing but Lowrance products and have never had any problems. I have the IFinder Pro handheld and the LMS-334 with the internal antennae. Been a great unit. No problems locking on and staying locked. Have the X-27 with GPS on order and will move my LMS-334 to the front with the trolling motor. Looking forward to spring!

"When we step into the outdoors, we have the privilege of standing in the presence of God through the power and majesty of His creation. That makes hunting more than a sport or a hobby. It's a calling to something greater. And that transforms the places that we stand into something more than a cropfield or a pasture or a mountain. It makes that place Hallowed Ground."

Horsager's picture
Horsager
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You'll like the 27, I have a pair of 26's. Only downside is that you'll want one up front too!

You gonna put the radar antenna on your boat?

This moment is a paradox, it's the oldest you've ever been as well as the youngest you'll ever be.



santana's picture
santana
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I have the 334 and it is junk, had to send it back in the middle of the season and it took 8 weeks to get it back it quit working the last time out in the fall, they sent me a new transducer I will see if that works???

Horsager's picture
Horsager
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Lowrance has a quick replacement program. You have to give them your credit card number then they credit you back when your damaged unit gets back. You have to ask for it specifically as it's mostly a program for pros fishing tournies. My 1st X-100 had a loose screen connection and died on the way to the ramp during it's maiden voyage. I very politely spent about 15min basically telling the customer service rep at Lowrance the same thing. "If you take 10 days to replace my unit I'm going to miss a full weekend of fishing." Finally he just asked me, "What do you want?" I explained I'd just had Dell send me a new computer monitor and it was on my doorstep overnight then I boxed up the defective unit and sent it back. He said "We can do that, how soon do you want it?" I had to pay extra for express shipping and then they charged my card and then credited my card as promised when my defective unit showed up at their customer service desk.

Polite and pesistant will get you what you want more often than not. Yelling and screaming about how much you just spent on some piece of crap that isn't working will cost you lots of fishing time.

This moment is a paradox, it's the oldest you've ever been as well as the youngest you'll ever be.



solocam's picture
solocam
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I hadn't planned on putting the radar option to use due to the high cost. I am guessing but I would imagine it is an option that will run in the $1000 range correct me if I'm wrong. I can't seem to find any info on it yet. Maybe I'll just put in in simulator mode so it looks good!! Man, I hope my 334 keeps working well and I don't encounter the problems others seem to have. I love it, just wanted the bigger screen with the 27 along with a few other things. Picked up the antenna mounting plate at Cabela's so ready to get it mounted.

"When we step into the outdoors, we have the privilege of standing in the presence of God through the power and majesty of His creation. That makes hunting more than a sport or a hobby. It's a calling to something greater. And that transforms the places that we stand into something more than a cropfield or a pasture or a mountain. It makes that place Hallowed Ground."

MissedAgain's picture
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walleyeDevil,

Cabelas has their Lowrance units on sale in the bargain cave.


Horsager's picture
Horsager
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I had no idea what the radar cost. It took me a bit of fiddling in the store to find out the difference between a 26 and 27 (I hadn't been reading about new electronics as my 26's were new last year) then I found the radar page and figured it out. If a guy was fishing the great lakes or LOW I think the radar might be handy (I'm assuming some of the marker bouys put out a radar signal), other than that I don't know enough about them to know what the advantages would be on our ND/SD/MN lakes, running in thick fog maybe, but even that is only a couple days/yr.

This moment is a paradox, it's the oldest you've ever been as well as the youngest you'll ever be.



walleyedevil's picture
walleyedevil
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Horsager,
If you don't own a GPS unit of some kind, now might be a good time to look into it. They are essential on finding midlake stucture and the spot on the spot, if you know what I mean. Not only are they easy to use but they will become necessary to find fresh fish that nobody else is fishing! Good Luck!

Horsager's picture
Horsager
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Walleyedevil, thanks for the heads up but I have two X-26 HD's on my boat.

This moment is a paradox, it's the oldest you've ever been as well as the youngest you'll ever be.



Tim Sandstrom's picture
Tim Sandstrom
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Horsager,

What would a used X-26 cost?  I notice you have two of them so you'd be more familiar with them than I would.

Tim Sandstrom


 

 

Kirsch's Outdoor Products | Fargo, ND | 701-261-9017 Garmin GPS Hunting Maps
Liebel's Guide Service | Williston, ND | 701-770-6746 liebelsguideservice.com
Jig-em-Up Guide Service | Grand Forks, ND | 701-739-9198 jig-em-up-guide-service.com

 

 
mamohr686's picture
mamohr686
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Joined: 12/18/01

Some of the best prices I've found are on tigergps (dot) com. Free shipping and no taxes makes a big difference also. With the new technology you can network 2 units so you can buy one display only with ducer and then the hole unit with gps and transducer and save another $300. I had a 332C on my last boat and had trouble with the network cables. I would keep losing signal until I switched it to the Y-cable. There were also some garbage updates last year that affected the sonar reading in shallow water and weeds but the new updates are fine. I'll stick with lowrance.

gonefshn's picture
gonefshn
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I've had and have sold lowrance for years with very few problems. The biggest problems have been placement of GPS pucks, placement of the actual unit (those with gps antenna built in), transducer placement, and transducers themselves. Many people don't realize that if your transducer hits something in the water at a fairly good speed, it really loses it's power. You might not even realize it hit something. Another thing to keep in mind is keeping your software updated. New updates typically get rid of a lot of the problems. Also, if your unit isn't working correctly download the latest update and set it to not check for prior versions (this way it will automatically install the update and can correct problems) and also don't erase after install since you may need to run it a couple times if you're having problems. You can always delete the update manually.

AND DO NOT FORGET to occasionally copy your data to a chip. So many people I know have lost their years of waypoints, trails, & icons for not doing that.