Bass Fishing Forum banner

1 - 12 of 12 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
87 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Looking for opinions please. What are the pluses and minuses of having a side imaging sonar up front...transducer on trolling motor?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
322 Posts
take a look on youtube there are a lot of tutorials on it. It looks like about >1000$ to get into it then the price goes up as the screen size goes up. It appears that once you get side scan the electronics can create a 3d image that you can do lots of things with.

I've got an old school Lowrance lms520. I'd like one of those new toys but since I don't go to new lakes it just doesn't make sense. My problem is even with the one of I've got I'm anxious to get the worm in the water and not fool around with electronics.

I went out yesterday to L Gtn just to play with sonar. Until I got to 50ft the screen was essentially blank. They were all hunkered down there in that 49deg water.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,248 Posts
It's not going to work very well in MOST cases. You need to be moving a couple few miles an hour for SI to give you a decent image since SI is taking a long thin "slice" rather than a "cone" shape from the transducer. In lay terms, unless your trolling pretty fast and straight SI is almost completely useless, but if you're on the big motor its AWESOME. I've seen SI set up to work on plane at over 25MPH and we were getting a darn good enough image of the bank. I'm not in that kind of hurry, but I use SI constantly when I'm behind the wheel idling a cove or point. You might already know all this but in that situation it saves so much driving around scaring fish off a nice spot trying to get over the top of them with the big motor running. Down Imaging (DI) on the other hand is absolutely useful on the trolling motor. The head rotation will not affect the DI image and you'll see what's out in front and around where you are casting instead of what just passed your casting halo.

All that being said there are rare occasions that I check the SI image when I see a fish on DI and have been trolling along pretty straight. Even if the image isn't great sometimes you can get enough info to see exactly WHERE in the cone you just saw a fish on DI.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
322 Posts
Matt, does your SI also have the electronics that creates a real looking image of the bottom? a 3d looking image? Perhaps that's the next step up? Obviously I'm way behind on this. Which one do you have?

I did look at some at Academy and it seemed like Lowrance has the brightest most crisp screen. Maybe that was due to adjustments but you would that think their demo thing would put on the best show possible for all the brands.

I was kinda afraid of what you described, you could spend a lot of time trolling around looking for a fish that may not even be a bass and if you locate it too closely there's a good chance you could scare it off.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
202 Posts
SI transducer on the trolling motor would not be very effective unless it was somehow allowed to remain stationary below the pivoting motor. Think about it shooting a beam to the side and your trolling motor waving back and forth, sideways etc as you fish - wouldnt work unless you head in a constant direction. Lowrance has what they call a spotlight scan, which is essentially forward facing sonar. Again, you have to keep you trolling motor facing in the direction you want to scan and kind of wobble it back and forth to get an idea of what is going on in front of you. Ive seen several youtube videos and reviews and have yet to hear anything too positive about it. Lowrance does have 3d scan that creates more of an topo map but i havent heard good reviews on that and its expensive.

Side scan for me is for mapping - idling around looking for things to mark and fish later. I am only familiar with lowrance, but in their upper end models all link so you can view side scan from your rear transducer on your front unit. Granted you are looking at what is 18' behind you, but for the purpose of mapping while you fish, that works ok if you keep moving fast enough to get a good image.

If you go lowrance, stay away from gen 1. They cannot share map cards. The will share waypoints but you will have to buy two map cards if you want good maps on both units. Gen2/3 share maps.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
87 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
Thanks for the responses guys. I bought a boat that has a small Humminbird SI on the front. I have noticed that the SI display was not very clear because of all the turning of the motor head. I was trying to decide if I should keep it or swap out for a lowrance that would match up with the Lowrance Elite TI 9 on my console. Looks like a swap is coming.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,248 Posts
Matt, does your SI also have the electronics that creates a real looking image of the bottom? a 3d looking image? Perhaps that's the next step up? Obviously I'm way behind on this. Which one do you have?

I did look at some at Academy and it seemed like Lowrance has the brightest most crisp screen. Maybe that was due to adjustments but you would that think their demo thing would put on the best show possible for all the brands.

I was kinda afraid of what you described, you could spend a lot of time trolling around looking for a fish that may not even be a bass and if you locate it too closely there's a good chance you could scare it off.
Yes it also has DI, but not the 360 view or whatever that other one is.

Humm/Low are both going to be very comparable. But I can tell you to avoid a Lakemaster HD map card if you buy a Humminbird. I don't know if the Lowrance is the same or not but I'm stuck having to buy a new card in order to get my maps to redraw fast enough when I'm driving more than 10MPH.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
63 Posts
Agreed with you, YouTube is best option to see various & new tutorials for better idea but there is no much better YouTube tutorial for trolling motor.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
125 Posts
Hank, I recommend either - Humminbird 360 or Garmin PanOptics.
I have some experience with 360 and will be getting it for my boat. Think of it as a spinning SI transducer.
Odds are, it will already work with your Helix.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
315 Posts
Press Menu twice, then System and about. Also Gen 1 have "HDS" written in blue on the lid over the memorycard, while Gen 2 have "HDS" in white.
 
1 - 12 of 12 Posts
Top