Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 24

Thread: Need fish finder upgrade help

  1. #1
    Member alaskabliss's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Wasilla
    Posts
    1,419

    Default Need fish finder upgrade help

    Currently running a Garmin GPSmap 178c and am tired of the dreaded flashing depth while in PWS. Looking to upgrade but don't want to spend $5k to do it. Anyone running something affordable that they absolutly love? I want to be able to find depth in 600' of water and have good sonar picture for finding fish. Mine seems to just not being doing what I want. Can I upgrade transducers or what unit to purchase?
    Ignorance is not Bliss, it's insanity

  2. #2
    Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    wasilla
    Posts
    540

    Default

    Furuno. Love mine. Fcv 587

  3. #3
    Sponsor potbuilder's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Palmer
    Posts
    4,229

    Default

    2X on the Furuno's love both of mine & da radar to! You want to give Semperfifishing Gil a call. You can find his contact info on the hull truth website.
    20130613_162649[1].jpg

    Alaska Shrimp Pots

    Rigid & Folding Shrimp & Crab Pots
    Electra Dyne Pot Haulers
    Ropes, Buoys, Bait
    alaskashrimppots.com
    akshrimppots@mtaonline.net
    907 775 1692

  4. #4
    Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    wasilla
    Posts
    540

    Default

    Yup! Got mine from gil too......btw. My sounder went put when I started it up this spring Sent it to the warranty center & had a new unit back in 2 weeks... No questions asked. Didn't send any invoice or warranty papers with it. Only cost was my shipping to them.......I was totally pleased

  5. #5
    Member alaskabliss's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Wasilla
    Posts
    1,419

    Default

    Thanks for the input. What transducer are you guys running? On the Furuno site it showed 600w or 1kw
    Ignorance is not Bliss, it's insanity

  6. #6

    Default

    I just installed the Furuno 627 and an Airmar P66 transducer. I've only used it once so far this season, but the difference between it and my old Lowrance sonar is like night and day.

  7. #7
    Sponsor potbuilder's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Palmer
    Posts
    4,229

    Default

    I'm running both a 600 on the small machine that came with the boat and a 1kw on the big machine.

    Alaska Shrimp Pots

    Rigid & Folding Shrimp & Crab Pots
    Electra Dyne Pot Haulers
    Ropes, Buoys, Bait
    alaskashrimppots.com
    akshrimppots@mtaonline.net
    907 775 1692

  8. #8
    Member
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    Girdwood, AK
    Posts
    28

    Default I love garmin's 547xs

    I have a Garmin 547xs, its a chartplotter/ sounder combo. I use a 300 watt airmar tm150m chirp transducer. Last week I got bottom of 1087' while cruising. At the same time I could see fish arches at 400', bait at 25', and my downrigger flasher spinning at 50' in zoom window. Bundle with G2 coastal charts its pretty sweet. Also downview compatable!
    QF

  9. #9
    Member Frostbitten's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Alaska - I wasn't born here, but I got here as soon as I could!
    Posts
    3,279

    Default

    I won't tell you what to buy, but under no circumstances should you buy anything that rhymes with "Hummingbird". Enough said.

  10. #10
    Member alaskabliss's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Wasilla
    Posts
    1,419

    Default

    I'm sure part of my issue is I don't have a bachelors degree in sonar and it seems ya need one for these to work right. I get frustrated trying to set pots in 400' of water, looking for the ledge and I lose depth for a few minutes. At first I thought it was from the jet but it doesnt change even with the boat off. I went out last year with a guy who had a Garmin and you could see everything so easy. Bait balls, fish, individual fish in the rocks and such where mine shows some stuff but not close to his. Could be settings but willing to upgrade if needed. I have heard great things about the Airmar transducers, maybe I should try one out before I dump a bunch of money on a new unit. Does the transducer make that much of a difference between brands? I'm running the Garmin 50/200
    Ignorance is not Bliss, it's insanity

  11. #11
    Member Cap'n Ron's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Idaho/Valdez
    Posts
    980

    Default

    Furuno 1870F with 1KW transducer and C-Map chip. Seattle boat show prices about $1500 total. Love it, just installed a few weeks ago and used for a week in PWS. Spent a bunch of time with factory tech reps, learned a lot. Furuno rep the best plus all the Furuno support on this forum sold me, and glad I listened!! 1 KW transducer is huge but wow I like it, doesn't drop the bottom and make me miss shrimp ledges like my old Garmin 5" with toy transducer. The c-map has batholytic data upgrade, really impressive, like an underwater topo map on steroids! Bought mine from J&G Marine Supply in Tacoma WA www.jgmarinesupply.com

  12. #12

    Default

    I went with the Furuno 620 with 600w Airmar P66, it is a huge improvement over the old cheap one, but I still have trouble seeing depth while cruising, I suspect because the bottom of my boat has a ton of aluminum patches which create turbulence. The 1KW thru-hull transducers seem to be the way to go, but I take my boat into the shallows and beach it too often. I prefer separate screens for my electronics, because you need a big screen to see GPS/Sonar/Radar in a split screen.

  13. #13
    Member alaskabliss's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Wasilla
    Posts
    1,419

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by BQuad View Post
    I went with the Furuno 620 with 600w Airmar P66, it is a huge improvement over the old cheap one, but I still have trouble seeing depth while cruising, I suspect because the bottom of my boat has a ton of aluminum patches which create turbulence. The 1KW thru-hull transducers seem to be the way to go, but I take my boat into the shallows and beach it too often. I prefer separate screens for my electronics, because you need a big screen to see GPS/Sonar/Radar in a split screen.
    What kind of boat you running? I have a 21' Tjet and was looking at the P66. Thats a big sucker but probaly why it works better then the little Garmin one. Since I am running a combo Garmin, I am willing to buy a seperate unit for depth. I have run into issues like you said with a split screen in bad weather, can't see.

    Thanks everyone for the tips and input. Now I need to do some window shopping and settle on something.
    Ignorance is not Bliss, it's insanity

  14. #14

    Default

    It looks big compared to the dinky ones on the cheaper ones, but you never think about the size once your done mounting it. Especially since it shows bottom so much better. I will say the menu system is a little harder to get used to then the others but you figure it out pretty quick. Mine's on a 25' bowpicker style(rear cabin) aluminum boat.

  15. #15

    Default

    I think just about everybody is making a good sounder these days. The older stuff, I'd stick with Furuno if you go used. I love furuno though, and I can only imagine what the new stuff can do. 600w transducer works fine on the old Nav Net w/sounder module I use.

  16. #16
    Member Bullelkklr's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Anchorage Alaska
    Posts
    4,837

    Default

    Maybe in line with this post....

    Is it worthwhile to upgrade a Garmin from their standard offering transducer to an Airmar P66 transducer?

    I can't see coupling a TM260 with my 546S because the transducer is worth more than the gps/sonar nowdays.

    Anyone upgrade from the standard garmin offering of:Plastic Transom Mount Transducer with Depth & Temperature (Dual Frequency, 8-pin)

    Part Number: 010-10272-10
    Save $82.73 USD


    Up to the P66 ?

  17. #17
    Moderator Paul H's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Anchorage
    Posts
    5,594

    Default

    I broke the transducer on my garmin and am replacing it with an Airmar P66. I'll report back on whether it's an improvement as I've never been pleased with the performance of my garmin. It'll work for silvers, but it never provided the resolution for bottom fish.
    Those that are successful in Alaska are those who are flexible, and allow the reality of life in Alaska to shape their dreams, vs. trying to force their dreams on the reality of Alaska.

    If you have a tenuous grasp of reality, Alaska is not for you.

  18. #18
    Member Sobie2's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Juneau
    Posts
    1,039

    Default

    If you don't need or want to network with you engine, the only thing I'd go with is the Raymarine Dragonfly or Dragonfly 7. Chirp pulse sonar and down scan, plus Navionics charts. I am getting one for my next boat. I have the 4 year old Raymarine A70D with an Airmar transudcer and its fishfinder capability and charting is way better than Lowrance or Gramins of the same era. This is before the Lowrance HDS stuff though. I have always been a Raymarine and Furuno person.

    Sobie2

  19. #19
    Member alaskabliss's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Wasilla
    Posts
    1,419

    Default

    Paul, I am anxious to hear your results with the new transducer. If I could do the same and it was an improvment, I would be happy. I actually really like the Garmin for the chartplotter part of it. I have the maps card already loaded and would prefer to find a fix for the sonar. Being that it is an jet boat, I don't have a lot of space to run multiple units and real large screens. The 7" would be my limit I think.

    I have researched the P66 and it gets confusing sometimes on what is available or not due to 6 pin or 8 pin. From what I gather, the 8 pin will do speed, temp and depth where the 6 pin does temp and depth. Then some are calling it a Garmin tranducer but it has a Airmar p/n. Some Airmar's have a garmin p/n. I am confused at this point and might just need to make a couple phone calls.
    Ignorance is not Bliss, it's insanity

  20. #20
    Member Bullelkklr's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Anchorage Alaska
    Posts
    4,837

    Default

    Garmin's website shows the P66 as an Airmar. Airmar shows it on their website as their product.

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •