Few things aggravate ice anglers more than frozen rod guides. Chipping away with fingernails, teeth, or anything else lying around can easily damage both the frame and rings of the guides, but you have to keep them clear because iced guides will weaken line, especially super-light monofilament or fluorocarbon. There are a number of homebrew remedies for tackling this problem, but none are more effective than lip balm, which creates a film on guides that inhibits them from freezing and building ice. It’s waterproof and takes quite a while for wet line or precipitation to break it down and necessitate reapplication. A small stick or tin stores easily in your pocket, and just a few swipes with your finger on guide rings will protect them from ice-up for several hours.
Another great feature of the Elite-5X HDI is the Downscan Overlay that combines traditional sonar with Downscan. Downscan’s primary purpose is finding structure, but it can’t very accurately spot individual fish. That is better done by sonar. Combining the two in one, this device displays on one screen both bottom and structure. So you can see every rock and submerged object as well as fish.
For those who want the ultimate in fish finding technology, we have the Lowrance HDS-9 as a top rated fish finder. Not only do you get a large screen, but it’s touch activated for even more convenience. It’s so wide that you can chart two maps at once, and it’s all high-definition which allows you to create 3D models of the bottom of any lake or river in real time. Overall, this is as good as it gets.
Raymarine has a few units that come with a built in GPS. The Dragonfly 4Pro, Dragonfly 5Pro, and Dragonfly 7Pro all have built in GPS. Pay close attention to the unit you are buying, because if you are looking for built in GPS the standard Dragonfly 4 and Dragonfly 5DVS do not have that feature built in. You absolutely have to go Pro to make sure you get the GPS you’re looking for.
CHIRP devices can transmit simultaneously on high and low frequencies. The lower frequency gives greater depth penetration, and it requires less power than a higher frequency signal so it generates less noise. The result is a “whisper into the water” that locates the fish without disturbing them. The higher frequency signal gives even finer detail at shallow to mid-water depths.
A compact, affordable combination GPS/Fishfinder. Simrad’s GO 5XSE is an all in one solution to quality chartplotting and sonar. The included Med/High/DownScan transducer provides exceptional sonar imaging in near-photo like detail. Multiple Charting options from Insight, Navionics and C-Map enable the Simrad GO5 to go anywhere the water takes you.
LCD displays are made of a grid of “picture elements,” tiny dots that individually darken when electrical current is applied, with their name shortened in common usage to “pixel.” More vertical pixels mean higher depth resolution, as each pixel represents less depth. The number of pixels in a screen’s horizontal axis determines how long objects stay onscreen before they scroll out of view, of significant importance with split-screen displays showing narrow columns of side-by-side information.
It is without a doubt that Lowrance has once again raised the bar for current technology. With their newly refined interface, their loyal customers will find the flow of operation to be much smoother than ever before. Don’t let the simple user operation fool you; Lowrance has built a technologically advanced unit with all the features you would expect.
Higher frequency transducers have shorter wavelengths and more wave cycles per second, which means you can visualize more details (smaller fish) but have only shallow to moderate depth capacity. One sound wave at 200kHz is slightly longer than 1/4", so a 200kHz sound wave will be able to detect fish as short as a quarter of an inch. A 200kHz transducer has a range of only about 600'. High frequency provides a crisp, clear picture of the bottom with the tradeoff of less depth range. For best resolution, choose 800kHz or 455kHz transducers.
While not every object will be as easy to distinguish, you can always get clues from the shape and also the strength of the sonar return. Notice the multiple orange sonar returns underneath the car – these tell you that this is a very hard object. The sonar scans have hit the car, bounced up to the surface of the water, bounced off the surface and hit the car again.