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Buying a fishfinder

Discussion in 'Tackle Talk' started by fishintiger, Aug 24, 2004.

  1. I was just wondering what you all thought about this. I got a $50 gift certificate for BPS for my B-day and I need a fish finder for my boat so what other way to spend my gift certificate than on a fish finder. The ones I am looking at are the Humminbird PiranhaMax 10 and the PiranhaMax 20 and also the Eagle Cuda 128 and the Eagle Cuda 168. The PiranahaMax 10 and the Cuda 128 are both $79 and the PMax 20 and the Cuda 168 are both $99. After looking at the BPS catalog I think the PMax's are a better deal but I wanted to hear from some of you that have used any of these or a couple of these. Thanks.


  2. You get what you pay for when buying a depth finder!!
  3. I am by no means an expert on fish finders but I do know that the two on my boat leave a lot to be desired and that when I do break down and replace one I will research it pretty well before buying. I have a couple of older Hummingbird models that give me a decent depth and contour feel. However, I hear everyone talking about the things they can do with their FF's and I know I can not with mine.

    I don't think you have to spend major bucks to get a good one but I personally would not buy one of the under $100 models. I have heard a lot of people speak highly of both Eagle and Garmin but they all have different prices for different capabilities. If you can hold off (and not burn a hole in your pocket with the money:D ), I would wait to hear some comments from some folks on here. You don't want to be regretting it afterwards.

    Good luck and let us know how it goes.
  4. esoxhunter

    esoxhunter Livin' the moontime

    I totally agree. Don't buy one under $100.
    If the budget is tight, look into the Eagle Fishmark 320 ($169) or the Eagle Fishmark 480 ($199). Both give you a lot of bang for the buck.
    If you desire one of the smaller screen units like the Cudas, check out the Eagle FishEasy 2 (($129).
    Don't be afraid to look into Lowrance either. They have put out some fantastic units this year at a reasonable price. Did you know you can have a COLOR screen for $299 ?

    In a nutshell, buy the most pixels you can afford. Anything less than 240 pixels is an antique :D
  5. I have a garmen that is about 3 yrs old,I thought it was pretty good(cost a little less than $300.)Then I bought a Lowrance,MAN what a difference!!!Unless you just need something to do while on your boat,save money to get a good one.Min in my opinion $400.00.Daryl
  6. Absolutely. Save your money until you can get something better in quality. I also bought a Garmin a couple years ago, a 160. Seemed fine to me, then this year I got a Lowrance. The difference between 160x160 and 480x480 is worth the extra price alone. I really don't think you'll need $400 though. There's some nice models out there these days for less. A Garmin 240 is under $200 now. I only paid $300 for my X125 and it does all I need, though I don't use it like some people. Paying more now will save you money in the long run. It wouldn't take long before you'd want to upgrade.

    KSUFLASH respect our rivers please

    I had an Eagle Cuda 168. Initially I thought it was pretty good, then I decided to upgrade to the Eagle Fishmark 480. WOW!!!!!!!! what a difference the 480x480 resolution does for seeing the bottom and marking fish. I got mine on sale for $179 at Gander Mountain earlier this year. If this is your first fish finder, it doesn't really matter about all the extra bells and whistles, but what really matters is that resolution. Also, the screen size of my fishmark 480 makes a big difference compared too the eagle cuda 168. From my experience so far, I would stay away from the $99 dollar models and spend the extra money on something a bit better in resolution.

  8. sowbelly101

    sowbelly101 Keep'n It Reel

    my boat came with one of the cheap pirhana hummbing birds and the only thing it was good for was tellin me how deep it was and what the water temp was. If that is all you want one for then the 100 buck models will do ya fine. I added a eagle fish easy 2 to my trolling motor and thought it was awesome, compared to the humming bird that is. I just installed a fishmark 480 and for the money i can complain one bit, i ripped the humming bird off and installed this in its place. i have had it out a few times and have really learned that i was fishing blind with the other 2 units. im seeing more fish then i ever was before, simply because i read the manual and also played around with all the settings. i always thought people were crazy when they said they could tell what kinda fish were down there but after using a sonar with a few more features and controls, i feel comfortable identifying the fish as well now. ill give ya my pirhana if you want it, it worked last time out...

    the day i get that ranger 619, ill have all lowrance electronics on it... :D

  9. You guys offered up a lot of good advice here. The only thing is that there has been no response for Fishintiger. I hope he did not get too anxious and spent the money before reading the responses.:rolleyes: I also appreciate everyone's suggestions. Someday I will be shopping for a new unit and I know there is a lot to consider.
  10. I haven't bought anything YET. I was looking at all the responses and I am feeling a little over whelmed on what to get. Last night I got the BPS catalog back out again. I think I have flipped through it atleast 100 times. I am now looking at the Eagle Fishelite 480 Sonar/GPS combo (449.99) or the Intellimap 480 recording GPS+WAAS (349.99) or the FishMark 480 (199.99). Maybe you can help me out. They are all the 480x480. The places I plan to fish are Hoover, Alum (maybe), Delaware, Buckeye Lake, and other lakes around Columbus and a couple of lakes down around Cincinnati. Are these too much for these bodies of water? Or heaven forbid not enough? My g/f already told me that we can't afford a $300 fish finder but BPS is offering a deal for anything over $125 you can break it up into 6 payments. So what do you guys think?
  11. Wait a minute. Are you asking us to team up against the girlfriend?:eek: :D

    I don't have a lot of experience with different units so I am going to leave that to others. I just wonder whether the GPS is really necessary? Obviously, it would be neat to have but on smaller lakes like you mentioned, much of the fishing areas can be locate by visual reference points.

  12. I can't take care of her myself. I get an allowance and everything I buy is monitored. Kinda sucks that she works at the bank we bank with. :( I'm not too sure I really need the GPS either. I like the idea of having it. I guess it would be something to mess around with while the fish aren't biting.
  13. Just don't explain it to the g/f that way or she may be offended.;) :D
  14. Ok this makes no sense to me. I am looking at the BPS catalog here at work because there is nothing better than thinking about fishing while working, but anyways I was flipping through the fishfinders and I seen the Lowrance GlobalMap 4800M GPS + WAAS. Well hot damn if it wasn't the same fishfinder as the Eagle 480 Recording GPS + WAAS just a little darker casing. I know Lowrance makes the Eagles but why would they sell them for a $50 difference? They have the same specs and everything. Just doesn't make much sense. Is there any benefit to buying a Lowrance instead of the Eagle?Better warrenty or anything like that? I think the Eagle might be the one I go with. I like the idea of the GPS. My head is starting to hurt. Thanks for all the help guys.
  15. Wait time out, stop the press. I just realized that the Intellimap is only a GPS. That would do me no good unless I called the fish to see where their exact locations were. :rolleyes: That would have been embarrassing. I think I will buy the FishMark 480. It looks like it is pretty good. I think I might be able to convince the g/f to spend $200 on a fish finder. I just hope I don't get stuck with house duty for the next 5 months. :(
  16. misfit

    misfit MOD SQUAD

    tony,i'm no expert myself,but i would go with one in the $200 or under range for now.the "bigger/costlier is better" philosphy isn't always the best your financial position,and at this point in time,no need to spend big bucks to get a quality unit when you can get one for can get good quality for under $200.i don't think you can go wrong with the garmin 240,if they are under that price 160 has a smaller screen,but serves me has a much higher output than many other,even costlier units,and good resolution.i have no problem seeing and reading the screen,even though i am half blind :rolleyes: ;)
    the 240 would give you a bigger screen.there are other good units in that range,but i can only give you my thoughts on what i've used,and have had good results with.i think many others will attest to the quality of the garmins also.i would like to have one of those high dollar lowrance units also,but it doesn't fit my pocketbook right now,so i'll be happy with my garmin for now :)
    when you're in the position financially,to buy a bigger,better boat,you can always upgrade the ff if you want.
  17. Doctor

    Doctor CJ Cat Attack Pack


    Some real good info here, can't add a whole lot but really agree with what catfishhunter33 and Misfit has put up, $$ is not the major choice, I know my 350 is not worth anything in shallow water, less than 7 foot deep, just too powerful, it does excel in deeper water, I like the bigger screens, at the age of 51 I was forced to get glasses so I do have trouble seeing the smaller screens this may not be an issue but it is something to consider, I don't use all the bells and whistles on my unit, just takes away power from the main screen, I mainly run the sonar screen, plus the split screen zoom if there is a questionable blip on the screen, when the fog rolls in the GPS is awesome to find your way back, have had that happen several times, Lowrances warrenty work is not the greatest in the world as compared to Garmin but they are getting better than they were at years ago. Tough making a choice when there are so many choices to choose from. Good luck...........Doc