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Thread: Discussion on Lowrance Elite 5 DSI/Chartplotter ....

  1. #11
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    Crappiepappy,i have one of these units and at the present time i love it.Two guys that work in Bass Pro at Branson,Mo. set mine up for me.It does everything it is supposed to (i think).I did buy the vavionics card about a month ago for it and it helped a 100% for following the river channels.I run it on the 800khz.I have found lots of brush piles and trees with it both marked and unmarked.The only thing i don't like about it is the small screen but u get use to that.I just got stronger glasses and that helps also.If i have any questions about anything at all on it i give those guys Troy or Paul a call @ BP IN BRANSON and they straighten me out on it.The other thing to me on the down scan part is that when u c a tree it does look like one and the same thing with brushpiles.It's just whatever u like and can afford.But when u buy the unit and the card u do have a quite a bit of money in it.But i myself i think it's worth it.I have not had any of the problems some say they have had.And like a few have said the instructions are really a joke.You either need to play with it a bunch or be lucky like me and have someone with the knowledge to either show or tell you.A total stranger can call Branson and the guys will help u in anyway they can.It's just a long distance call but with the cell phones thats nothing.

  2. #12
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    Arky ... I've only had the opportunity to use mine, on the water, one time. I do play around with the emulator program, on my computer, but that's only to familiarize myself with button functions & menu choices. Pre-programmed simulations are set to be the best picture/outcome that the unit can show ... and we all know that real time use doesn't always produce the same results.

    I'm $477 into this unit .. and do not have a map card. But, since I'll be using it on lakes that I'm already familiar with (for now) ... the in-unit map will suffice. If I start branching out into unfamiliar waters, on a regular basis, then I'll likely get a map card. I knew, coming into this purchase, that it was a moderate upgrade over the unit it replaced (+ color, +GPS, +chartplotter/map/waypoint capability) ... but felt it was worth it, at that price.

    I'll know more about how well it's going to work, for me, once I get more time on the water with it. What I'm looking for now, is a discussion on the settings that give the best outcome in picture quality, target seperation, ability to identify cover type, identify fish, ect. ... and the depth ranges being fished. I rarely fish deeper than 30ft ... and the majority of the time it's between 10-20ft. Less than 10fow ... and a down pointing DF is, to me, only useful to keep the boat positioned in that depth, since the cover/targets I'm fishing are not likely to be right under me.

    I can see where the elongated oval cone angle of the DSI would be good for spider rigging & slow trolling .. but I haven't gotten into using those methods very often. Anyone have pros/cons to discuss about DSI when casting or dock shooting ??

    ... cp

  3. #13
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    Hey Pappy, do you still like this unit? I'm thinking about one.
    Fair Winds and Following Seas

    Bill H. PTC USN Ret
    Chesapeake, Va


  4. #14
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    Bill ... I haven't used it enough to know Rofl

    I'm waiting for some more water time with it, to see if I'm going to pull the trigger on a map card for it, or if the preloaded outline maps will be sufficient for the lakes I fish.

    Going from using the old b/w low $$ units, to this one (color/gps/chartmap/water temp/speed/downscan) is probably going to be a bit of a learning curve. I've been playing with the emulator program, and will continue to do so thru the Winter months ... so maybe that curve will be shortened a little, by the time I get a chance to get back on the water.

    Wish I could give you a better report ... but, the one time I did use it, I was paying more attention to fishing than I was to the screen. I did piddle with it a few times, but not enough to even see what the different color schemes looked like or the split screen. I did turn on the split screen (map/dsi) and it showed me (on the map chart) exactly where I was on the lake & even named the lake. It was, however, just the shoreline outline map (no details or contours) ... but, I didn't try to zoom in on the map, or even know if I could do that. That's one reason I started this thread ... to see if I could get some "can or can't do" info about this unit.

    ... cp

  5. #15
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    Here is a good way to play with your new unit. I went to Gander Mtn. were they had the unit on display I would play with it until I got familiar with different functions on the unit. The sales people were knowledgeable about the unit and helped a lot. So find a store that has it on display and go play with it until you get comfortable operating the unit,saves time so when you go fishing you fish instead of playing with the unit.

  6. #16
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    Hey Crappiepappy i just bought the same unit. I got it through Gander Mountain for $100 off the regular price and then the $100 rebate so i'm in mine for about the same. I've only used it 3 times on the water and i love it. The only problem i had was trying to figure out wether to put it up front or back by the steering wheel. I chose in the back and left my Humminbird 570 up front. Another thing i can't seem to figure out is the GPS coordinates the conservation department has for structure on Stockton Lake doesn't coordinate with the Lowrance map. I dont have the Navionics card yet. I don't know if theres a conversion or i'm not entering something right or what.
    Thanks Anchor Mouse, smithlaker thanked you for this post

  7. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by kcchiefsfan View Post
    Hey Crappiepappy i just bought the same unit. I got it through Gander Mountain for $100 off the regular price and then the $100 rebate so i'm in mine for about the same. I've only used it 3 times on the water and i love it. The only problem i had was trying to figure out wether to put it up front or back by the steering wheel. I chose in the back and left my Humminbird 570 up front. Another thing i can't seem to figure out is the GPS coordinates the conservation department has for structure on Stockton Lake doesn't coordinate with the Lowrance map. I dont have the Navionics card yet. I don't know if theres a conversion or i'm not entering something right or what.
    KC ... I have a HB low end df mounted in the dash/console, already ... so my E5DSI was put up front to replace a Lowrance Strata 128. Both of those units came with the boat, which I just purchased about 6mo ago ... so I really just jumped on the E5DSI deal, so I could have the "extras" (gps/map/color/temp/speed/DSI).

    Can't help you on the GPS stuff, yet. Still learning, myself.

    Hopefully we'll get some more members to chime in, and kick this thing around until everyone has a better idea of what its capabilities are ... & how they've got it working for them. I'm not likely to have a chance to start back using mine (on the water) until late March, but it will get put thru its paces, once I do start fishing again. In the meantime, I just wanted to get a discussion going about the unit, to maybe lessen the learning curve.

    It's a different animal than the 2d units I've used all my life ... and it's going to take a little getting used to, especially being mounted on the TM & throwing out a different shaped cone. It was probably best suited for being transom mounted, & used for scouting & trolling ... but, I'm determined to make it work for me on the bow/TM, even if I have to tweak the way I fish to make it work Rofl

    ... cp

  8. #18
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    Well for better or worse I've got one coming.
    Fair Winds and Following Seas

    Bill H. PTC USN Ret
    Chesapeake, Va


  9. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by crappiepappy View Post
    KC ... I have a HB low end df mounted in the dash/console, already ... so my E5DSI was put up front to replace a Lowrance Strata 128. Both of those units came with the boat, which I just purchased about 6mo ago ... so I really just jumped on the E5DSI deal, so I could have the "extras" (gps/map/color/temp/speed/DSI).

    Can't help you on the GPS stuff, yet. Still learning, myself.

    Hopefully we'll get some more members to chime in, and kick this thing around until everyone has a better idea of what its capabilities are ... & how they've got it working for them. I'm not likely to have a chance to start back using mine (on the water) until late March, but it will get put thru its paces, once I do start fishing again. In the meantime, I just wanted to get a discussion going about the unit, to maybe lessen the learning curve.

    It's a different animal than the 2d units I've used all my life ... and it's going to take a little getting used to, especially being mounted on the TM & throwing out a different shaped cone. It was probably best suited for being transom mounted, & used for scouting & trolling ... but, I'm determined to make it work for me on the bow/TM, even if I have to tweak the way I fish to make it work Rofl

    ... cp
    Pappy the learning curve is not as difficult as it may seem...

    1. Always be aware of the shape of your sonar beam (I think you have that mental picture already)...
    2. Always be aware of how those individual sonar pings (in that sonar beam shape) are plotted on your screen (I think you have that mental picture already)...
    3. Time practicing....

    I think you will be glad you put that unit on the front with you.....

    The front is where you fish...Your most advantageous tool (your E5DSI) should be up there with you...

    I'm looking forward to pix from your experiences with the E5DSI...

    Rickie
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  10. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by rnvinc View Post
    Pappy the learning curve is not as difficult as it may seem...

    1. Always be aware of the shape of your sonar beam (I think you have that mental picture already)...
    2. Always be aware of how those individual sonar pings (in that sonar beam shape) are plotted on your screen (I think you have that mental picture already)...
    3. Time practicing....

    I think you will be glad you put that unit on the front with you.....

    The front is where you fish...Your most advantageous tool (your E5DSI) should be up there with you...

    I'm looking forward to pix from your experiences with the E5DSI...

    Rickie
    Yeah, Rickie ... I think I'm pretty much down with the shape of my cone & how that relates to the picture on the screen. I am wondering, though ... do you know the actual "degree" of cone angle spread that this unit throws out ?? Like I said before ... if I know that my elongated cone is 6deg front to back & 45deg left to right, then I'll have a better idea of the area's size & shape as it relates to the depth of water I'm in. I'd just have a better mental picture to compare to the screen's picture. Like when I used a 2d unit w/20deg cone angle ... I knew the "circle" on the bottom was 1/3 as wide as the depth (20fow = 7ft wide circle) .... so the swath I was seeing was ~ 3.5ft to either side of the transducers position. That helped me with rod/bait placement, and pinpointed the cover into a small area. With the DSI cone shape being elongated out to each side (in relation to the direction the TM is pointed) ... knowing the degree of angle would give me a better idea of what patch of bottom I'm seeing, and where to make bouy drops that wouldn't be right IN the cover, as well as how to spread my poles or where to concentrate my baits.

    ... cp

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