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Thread: Advice on new unit - First Electronics

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2019
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    Default Advice on new unit - First Electronics

    Hello all,

    I grew up crappie fishing in South Louisiana (shallow water jig fishing), and recently moved to Oklahoma, where I've come to realize just how little I know about finding crappie other than during the spawn. I fish out of a Hobie Pro Angler 14, and I want to add a unit to it so that I don't feel like I'm wandering around with a blindfold on. Hate to beat a dead horse, but with this being the first electronics purchase I've ever made, I need some guidance on what unit would best fit my needs.

    I'm wanting mapping, 2d sonar, side imaging, and down imaging. I'm wanting to keep the purchase below $1000. The two units that I've been looking at are the Garmin Echomap Plus 73sv ($750 on Garmin's website) and the Lowrance Elite-7 Ti ($800 with the TotalScan transducer on Lowrance's website).

    I looked at some of the cheaper units from both Garmin and Lowrance, and it seems like if I'm going to purchase electronics then I need to "fry the whole squirrel" and get something that already has mapping (the Garmin Striker series doesn't come loaded with maps and you can't upload them yourself, need to construct the maps through use.) Also I think I would kick myself if I bought a 5" screen instead of the 7". While the Pro Angler is more of a boat than a kayak, a 9" screen would take up too much space.

    I really like what I've read about the Garmin unit. I haven't dug up as much info on the Lowrance unit, and honestly the reason I began to consider the Lowrance unit was because the PA comes "Lowrance ready," where a recess is located in the bottom of the hull to place a traditional Lowrance transducer. After I learned that the transducer for side imaging needs to be below the bottom of the hull, the Lowrance ready capability doesn't really do anything for me.

    Any advice on which unit would fit my needs? I strictly fish with one pole with jigs, no spider rigging.

    One of my concerns with the side imaging is that the mount for SI transducers available (made by Berleypro) has an ABS plastic cover over the transducer to protect it from damage. Most of the reviews I have found state that the imaging quality is not affected by this cover. Does anybody have any experience with a plastic cover being placed over their transducer?

    Thanks for any help!

  2. #2
    Join Date
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    Weather you buy a Lowrance or Garmin give Brian at BBG Marine a call, he's very knowledgeable and has very good pricing.Both units you've listed can be bought a fare amount cheaper.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Central Minn View Post
    Weather you buy a Lowrance or Garmin give Brian at BBG Marine a call, he's very knowledgeable and has very good pricing.Both units you've listed can be bought a fare amount cheaper.
    I would call Brian and specify what you are trying to accomplish, and let him guide you. I have done that with my electronics plus a recent trolling motor purchase. I’m thrilled with his knowledge, advice, and his prices are virtually unbeatable!
    I can do all things through Christ, who strengthens me.

  4. #4
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    Garmin is a great unit. I have the 74SV and I added the Livescope to it. You can add it later if you want to. $1500 extra but well worth it IMHO.

  5. #5
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    I recently bought the Garmin echomap 73sv from Gander outdoors website. It was $485 and it included transducer. Shipping and tax extra.

  6. #6
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    I recently bought a Lowrance Elite Ti 7. Its one of the best purchases I have ever made for fishing. I have a Lowrance Hook 7 and liked it ok. Now that one is up front and the ti in in the back. I bought it for $500 from Overtons about 3 weeks ago.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2014
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    GA
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    Take a look at the Hummibird Helix 7 CHIRP MEGA SI GPS G3N as well
    https://humminbird.johnsonoutdoors.c...ega-si-gps-g3n



    (disclosure: I'm an employee of Johnson Outdoors)

  8. #8
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    I know you didnt mention Humminbird. But, you can find Helix 9 g2n mega side imaging machines on clearance for $999 that perform like the $1500 g3n machines. I bought one and love it. The detail of the mega imaging has been Nothing short of amazing.

  9. #9
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    Call the guys at The Bass Tank near Tulsa.. They are Garmin experts.

    I'd recommend the 93SV plus. Add livescope in the future. If you're a one pole jig guy then livescope is a must.. Its absolutely incredible and will increase your success rates dramatically. Not to mention it is FUN!

    Maybe consider hiring a guide in OK that utilize what I am talking about so you can see it for yourself before committing..

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