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Super Bass-O-Matic '76
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Discussion Starter #1
I'm in the market for a fishfinder/GPS unit that has mapping capabilities for some of the lakes/ponds/quarries that aren't going to be on the standard inland maps.
Looking at the Garmin EchoMap Plus 73SV, but wondering if any of the Lowrance/HB/Raymarine models would be equivalent or better at the same price point ($499)?
Also, how good is the detail in the maps, and how fast can you create a map?
Thanks in advance!
Dan
 

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I have several Lowrance units and really like them. Lowrance has C-Map Genesis that is very good. Bass-pro has a deal on an Elite-7 Ti that is in your price-point and comes with Navionics+ (Navionics+ is expensive on its own.)


https://www.basspro.com/shop/en/Low...tage&cjevent=375dab823a1211e9835601310a24060b


That said, from a mapping perspective, you can go with any unit you want if you get Navionics. You can go to the Navionics website and click "Chartviewer" and preview what Navionics has bathymetry on. Navionics' Sonarchart live is excellent for creating your own custom maps. Navionics is the gold standard in my opinion. If your unit comes with other pre-loaded maps, be sure you toggle between the Navionics maps and the pre-loaded maps. I was fishing in Wisconsin with a local angler and all of his "secret" spots were already noted on the Lowrance maps, but not on the Navionics units. In other words, Navionics is generally the better map -- but it depends on what body of water you are on.


There are some other considerations:
  • Garmin and Navionics recently merged. However, Garmin maps are not Navionics maps. Don't believe the sales guy who tells you otherwise. Navionics maps are the gold standard.
  • If you want to troll or use auto-pilot and network your trolling motor, you will need a Humminbird paired with a Minnkota or a Lowrance paired with a Motorguide Xi3 or Xi5.
  • If you do a lot of vertical fishing (jigging) the Garmin Panoptics/Livescope is blow-your-mind-freaking-amazing, but Garmin does not network well with other accessories like trolling motors.
  • MegaImaging on Humminbird is amazing, but the range is limited.
  • Raymarine's down-imaging is crystal clear.
For a all-around unit, I really like my Lowrance Elite Ti. If you go with the Lowrance Elite Ti, check out my post under Hot Deals “Lowrance Elite 7 Ti Totalscan with Navionics plus...499”
 

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I don’t exaggerate…I just remember BIG!
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I have several Lowrance units and really like them. Lowrance has C-Map Genesis that is very good. Bass-pro has a deal on an Elite-7 Ti that is in your price-point and comes with Navionics+ (Navionics+ is expensive on its own.)


https://www.basspro.com/shop/en/Lowrance-Elite-7-Ti-MidHighTotalScan-Touchscreen-FishfinderChartplotter-with-USCanada-Navionics-Card?URL=https://www.basspro.com/shop/en/Lowrance-Elite-7-Ti-MidHighTotalScan-Touchscreen-FishfinderChartplotter-with-USCanada-Navionics-Card&hvarAID=vantage&cjevent=375dab823a1211e9835601310a24060b


That said, from a mapping perspective, you can go with any unit you want if you get Navionics. You can go to the Navionics website and click "Chartviewer" and preview what Navionics has bathymetry on. Navionics' Sonarchart live is excellent for creating your own custom maps. Navionics is the gold standard in my opinion. If your unit comes with other pre-loaded maps, be sure you toggle between the Navionics maps and the pre-loaded maps. I was fishing in Wisconsin with a local angler and all of his "secret" spots were already noted on the Lowrance maps, but not on the Navionics units. In other words, Navionics is generally the better map -- but it depends on what body of water you are on.


There are some other considerations:
  • Garmin and Navionics recently merged. However, Garmin maps are not Navionics maps. Don't believe the sales guy who tells you otherwise. Navionics maps are the gold standard.
  • If you want to troll or use auto-pilot and network your trolling motor, you will need a Humminbird paired with a Minnkota or a Lowrance paired with a Motorguide Xi3 or Xi5.
  • If you do a lot of vertical fishing (jigging) the Garmin Panoptics/Livescope is blow-your-mind-freaking-amazing, but Garmin does not network well with other accessories like trolling motors.
  • MegaImaging on Humminbird is amazing, but the range is limited.
  • Raymarine's down-imaging is crystal clear.
For a all-around unit, I really like my Lowrance Elite Ti. If you go with the Lowrance Elite Ti, check out my post under Hot Deals “Lowrance Elite 7 Ti Totalscan with Navionics plus...499”
Great post informative post Ben! I agree with most everything mentioned.

Just a couple clarifications to information provided.
1. An Elite does not network with an Xi5 or anything else. Only HDS / Carbon and Live.
2. A Navionics map card costs extra money (up to $200) to get the premium maps. The stock Lowrance maps are OK, but I personally feel the Garmin maps are as good without going up to a map card. Both are very adequate.
3. If he’s looking for something to make maps, then I promise you the Garmin is tons easier to use having used both. Active Captain while sitting in my living room looking at the Quickdraw Community is also a great tool. Live uploaded data from others on the lake and not to mention being able to do contour shading of 10 colors of your choosing and range. I was playing with this last night and think it will be a HUGE tool on bodies of water not commonly fished. Also it wouldn’t matter if Navionics mapping was / was not on the unit if your drawing your own contours. The upload for the G3 maps will be out tomorrow for the Garmin units. We will see if it truly is the best of both worlds!

Not trying to detract from your post in anyway, but rather clarify and educate. Both are great units at a very fair price point.
 

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Brahmabull71 and I are good friends and agree that Garmin is an amazing unit. However, Elite Ti will network to a Motorguide. I did it on my old boat. But, Elite Ti will not network to other chartplotters. I do not know about the new Elite Ti2 units.
 

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I don’t exaggerate…I just remember BIG!
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Yes they do! I stand corrected! Awesome feature I might add.
 

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The Garmin 73 is on sale, but once they are gone, they are gone. Garmin is also giving the owners of these units a free download of the new map series developed by Navionics. Right now I'd say Garmin is the better buy. However as stated.... once the old units are gone, the new units are higher price...
 

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Super Bass-O-Matic '76
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Discussion Starter #7
The Garmin 73 is on sale, but once they are gone, they are gone. Garmin is also giving the owners of these units a free download of the new map series developed by Navionics. Right now I'd say Garmin is the better buy. However as stated.... once the old units are gone, the new units are higher price...
It's because the new Garmin units have the upgraded transceiver (due to the patent settlement), correct?
 

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I don’t exaggerate…I just remember BIG!
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The new (2019) Garmin 73sv has the GT52HW-TM transducer and the Lakeview HD G3 maps.

The current discounted version (2018 - prior) is the CV52HW-TM transducer and the G2 maps that can be updated for free as of today (2/27) per conversation I had with Garmin two weeks ago Wednesday / Friday.

That’s the difference. The CV transducers stitch together HD down imaging for bottom coverage using two crystals that are wider and more out to the side much like the old Totalscan transducers did of Lowrance. The GT have a downward facing transducer to get better down images. There are YouTube videos showing the difference of the Lowrance TI vs Garmin 73 with CV transducer and it clearly represents the Lowrance DI is clearer in that specific test. I run the Garmin side by side with Lowrance HDS and truly don’t notice a lot of difference.

This is full disclosure and may be important for you and how you fish. It doesn’t bother me at all especially since their CHIRP is so good.

https://support.garmin.com/en-AU/?faq=gIrXJ4RZGm0ypilqQFGs0A

Good luck!
 

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To use the Lowrance units for live mapping you will need a total scan transducer. It will draw 1’ contour maps. Super useful if you want correct mapping.
 
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