10 Best Fish Finder GPS Combo [Reviews with Buying Guide]

Best Fish Finder GPS ComboA fish finder is an essential tool for any fisherman who takes their activity seriously. Without a good fish finder, you might not return from your fishing trip with a healthy catch or even with a catch at all.

There are a lot of fish finders that make big promises but only a few manage to deliver. We tried out dozens of devices in search of the best fish finder GPS combo.

Although a GPS isn’t essential on a fish finder, it certainly has its benefits. Yes, you would probably have GPS navigation on your phone. But fishing trips tend to be long endeavors, and it is best if you conserve your mobile battery for more important tasks.

Fish finders that come with GPS integration make navigation easier and also allow users to save places of interest and fishing hotspots. We have compiled a list and buyer’s guide for your ease.

Quick Overview – Best Fish Finder GPS Combo

  1. Garmin Striker 4 – Entry-level fish finder with a good feature-set
  2. Simrad GO9 XSE – Ultimate navigational tool for sailors
  3. HDS-7 LIVE – Advanced fish finder for the advanced fisherman
  4. Garmin Echomap Chirp 74CV – All-inclusive fish finder and chart plotter
  5. Lowrance HOOK2 5 TS – Advanced fish detection capability at an affordable price
  6. Humminbird Helix 5 CHIRP DI – Good balance of detection and navigation
  7. Garmin Striker Plus 5cv – Powerful fish finder with HD lake mapping
  8. Lowrance HOOK2 5X – Affordable detector with down imaging
  9. Garmin Striker 4cv – Upgraded and more capable with 3D imaging
  10. Lowrance HOOK2 4X GPS – Budget fish finder with navigation

Top 10 Best Fish Finder GPS Combo | Comparison

PreviewProductKey FeaturesPrice


  • Display: 3.5-Inch
  • Maximum Depth: 1,600 feet
  • Transmit Power: 200 W (RMS)
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  • Display: 9-inch
  • Built-In: GPS Receiver
  • Weight: 6 Pounds
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  • Display: 7-inch
  • Weight: 8.7 Pounds
  • Processor: Dual-Core
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  • Display: 800 x 480 px
  • Weight: 1.7 Pounds
  • Side-imaging: No
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  • Display: 5-inch
  • Weight: 3.6 Pounds
  • Color: Triple Shot
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  • Display: 5-Inch
  • GPS Receiver: Internal
  • Card Slot: Micro SD
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  • Display: 5-Inch
  • Weight:: 1 Pounds
  • Built-in: GPS
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  • Display: 5-inch
  • Weight:: 4.4 Pounds
  • Color: Splitshot
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  • Display: 4.3-Inch
  • Weight: 11.2 Ounces
  • Transmit power: 300W
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  • Display: 4-inch
  • Transducer: Bullet
  • Built-In: GPS Mapping
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Best GPS Fish Finder Reviews for 2020

The best fish finder GPS combo must deliver a good balance between detection and navigational capabilities. We have selected ten devices that we believe excel in both:

1. Garmin Striker 4 – Best Budget Fish Finder

Garmin Striker is among the most popular and the most trusted names in fish finding equipment. Few recommendations lists are ever complete without some of Garmin’s offerings.

It has an extensive history of introducing innovations in sonar detection. The Garmin name has become synonymous with reliability and quality.

Garmin Striker 4 fish finder

Product Highlights

Even though the Striker 4 is an entry-level detector available at a very affordable price, Garmin still ships the device with CHIRP sonar detection.

This is a military-grade detection technology that captures more detail than regular sonar scanning.

CHIRP sonar is an obvious inclusion on any high-end fish detector, but the Striker 4 isn’t marketed as a high-end model.

This makes the included technology all the more appealing. It also gives this device an edge over many others being sold in a similar price range.

Unlike traditional sonar scanning that scans on a single frequency at a time, CHIPR scanning employs multi-frequency sonar beams.

Because of the varied frequencies, this type of scanning captures more of the surrounding and captures it in more detail.

The data captured by the sonar transducer is delivered to the user through a crisp 3.5-inch display.

Users are given the option to navigate through the touch-sensitive display or through the tactile buttons. This is a welcome choice at this price.

The device comes with a sensitive GPS system. However, as this is a budget device, it lacks many of the advanced mappings and plotting features that you would see on more expensive fish finders.

The navigation system is still quite impressive and allows you to save waypoints on your trip.

Pros

✅ A good set of features

✅ Affordable price

✅ CHIRP sonar scanning

✅ GPS navigation and waypoints

✅ Side-by-side viewing mode

Cons

❌ Display is small

Our Thoughts

Garmin Striker 4 is one of the most feature-packed budget offerings we have reviewed.

People are often reluctant to buy cheaper devices because they offer unreliable and subpar performance. This isn’t the case with this accurate fish finder with GPS navigation.

Also Read:
10 Best Fish Finder Under 200 Dollars
8 Best Fish Finders Under $500 Reviews in 2020

2. Simrad GO9 XSE – Best Fish Finder GPS Combo

Simrad is another popular fishing equipment manufacturer with a rich history spanning over 6 decades. The company has been in operation since 1946. It has crafted quite a niche for itself by delivering premium fish finding equipment.

The GO9 XSE isn’t just a fish finder but a complete navigational solution for fishermen and sailors. With a dedicated chart plotter, radar support, sonar detection, and imaging, this device is a powerhouse.

Simrad GO9

Product Highlights

There is a lot going on in this fishing and wayfinding device. Let’s start with the feature you will notice first. This is the device’s 9-inch HD LED-backlit display.

The display features a multi-touch interface and a capacitive touchscreen to give you added control over your applications.

The device comes in multiple variants that users can choose from according to their specific needs.

The sonar capabilities on the GO9 XSE aren’t just limited to fish finding. Users can select the ForwardScan variant for a safe cruise or the Broadband Sounder variant for CHIRP and Active Imaging fish detection.

An optional TotalScan transducer sold separately gives fishermen enhanced control over their catch.

The transducer is capable of CHIRP scanning, DownScan imaging, and other advanced detection modes. These include FishReveal fish targeting technology and StructureScan.

StructureScan HD imaging delivers clear views of fish-holding structures underneath the boat and on both sides.

This allows fishermen to save time and fish only in hotspots of activity that will deliver the most handsome catch.

The included Simrad GO chart plotter comes preloaded with HD 1-foot contour maps of coastal areas from C-MAP.

The radar option, which comes with either 3G or 4G capability, lets users navigate confidently through harbors and troubled waters where visibility poses an issue.

Pros

✅ HD LED-backlit display

✅ Chart plotter and mapping functionality

✅ ForwardScan and StructureScan sonar

✅ Expandable storage

✅ Radar view

Cons

❌ Advanced transducer needs to be purchased separately

Our Thoughts

Every sailor needs a device they can trust to guide them through difficult waters and deliver exceptional control in all situations.

The GO9 XSE is that device. With a powerful set of navigational, chart plotting, mapping, and radar capabilities, this is an all-inclusive fishing solution.

Recommended: 8 Best Fish Finders for Kayak Fishing [Buying Guide 2020]

3. Lowrance HDS-7 LIVE – Premium Feature-Rich Fish Finder

Now that we have dipped into pricier waters, we find ourselves reviewing the most expensive device on this list. The HDS-7 LIVE from Lowrance is considered to be one of the most capable and feature-rich scanners on the market.

We have seen how capable Lowrance is of delivering premium functionality at a low-price range. The HDS-7 LIVE shows what the company can do at a much higher price-point.

HDS-7 LIVE

Product Highlights

The HDS-7 LIVE is what a modern fish finder looks like. The additional features and capabilities this device comes with make CHIRP scanning look fairly standard.

In addition to CHIRP, the detector features Active Imaging, fish targeting, smartphone integration, and advanced mapping and navigation software.

The device boasts a 7-inch HD SolarMAX capacitive touch-screen display. The display is exceptionally bright so it is not only visible in sunlight, it is also visible through polarized sunglasses.

The wide viewing angles of the display also come in handy, as they allow you to view the display from various angles.

Powering all the advanced functions of the HDS-7 LIVE is a powerful dual-core processor.

Whether you are exploring a chart, viewing your sonar detection history, or drawing a live map, you will experience the ultra-smooth performance with virtually no lags.

With the large screen, users can also take advantage of the multiple scanning modes.

Results from the CHIRP sonar scanning and the 3D active imaging, which includes down- and side-imaging, can be viewed side by side. This gives you a detailed view of the underwater environment.

Complementing the device’s scanning capability is a solid set of mapping features. The device comes with C-Map Live mapping.

It also comes preloaded with HD 1-foot contour maps of over 4000 lakes and shorelines across the US.

Easy Routing helps users navigate faster as the device automatically plans the shortest route to your destination.

Pros

✅ CHIRP variable-beam scanning

✅ 3D Active Imaging

✅ FishReveal fish targeting

✅ Preloaded HD maps

✅ Smartphone integration

Cons

❌ Very expensive

Our Thoughts

The HDS-7 LIVE from Lowrance is the ultimate fishing detector and navigational gear for the dedicated fisherman. Whether you are an avid enthusiast or a professional fisherman, this device delivers a great level of control and makes fishing trips more efficient.

4. Garmin Echomap Chirp 74CV – Best Scanner Chart Plotter Combo

This fish finder from Garmin can be counted among the more premium devices the company has to offer.

With the Echomap 74CV Garmin demonstrates that it can produce wholesome, feature-rich devices like other manufacturers, and do it at a competitive price.

The Echomap 74CV breaks from protocol and features a ton of chart plotting features that are generally missing on budget Garmin devices.

Garmin Echomap Chirp 74Cv

Product Highlights

Garmin pushes into a higher price point with the Echomap 74CV and does it exceptionally well. Although it is more expensive than any other Garmin device we review for this article, it delivers exceptional value for money.

The Echomap Plus is a fish finder and chart plotter that benefits from a large 5-inch WVGA display.

The 800 x 480 px display delivers crisp images and text in all lighting conditions. The 74CV is a premium device and it shows. The outer shell of the main display unit is sturdy and comes with an IPX7 water-resistance rating.

We have discussed Garmin’s GPS detection capabilities in some detail over the previous few products. This fish finder showcases the best in 2D sonar scanning with CHIRP technology.

This scanning mode works between frequencies of 150 kHz and 240 kHz. Th additional ClearVU imaging mode that operates within the frequencies of 455 kHz and 800 kHz captures detailed images of the area underneath the boat.

What is different in the Echomap 74CV is the addition of Garmin’s Bluechart G2. Bluechart is a dedicated chart plotting application that comes preloaded with all the lakes and coastal areas across the US.

It features live tidal updates, fishing charts, as well as depth contours and other information. Bluechart comes in addition to Garmin’s Quickdraw Contours mapping application.

Pros

✅ CHIRP sonar scanning

✅ ClearVU down-imaging

✅ Quickdraw Contours mapping

✅ Bluechart G2 preloaded maps

Cons

❌ Side-imaging not available

Our Thoughts

The Echomap 74CV is one of the best all-inclusive fish finders from Garmin.

Although there are cheaper fish finders from the company, the 4CV presents itself as a comprehensive fishing and navigational solution for the advanced fisherman.

5. Lowrance HOOK2 5 TS – Best Value GPS Fish Finder

The Hook2 5 TS is a member of the same product lineup as the Hook2 5X that we reviewed a few products back.

Lowrance, like other leading manufacturers, spoils its customers with choice. Despite being an affordable device in general, the Hook2 5 TS is the most expensive fish finder in Lowrance’s Series 5 lineup.

Lowrance HOOK2 5

Product Highlights

Like any good device, the Hook2 5 TS delivers exceptional 2D sonar scanning performance with dual-beam CHIRP scanning technology.

In addition to conventional sonar scanning, the device also offers two other scanning modes. These are DownScan imaging and SideScan imaging.

The Hook2 5 TS brings forward the same impressive sonar capabilities we have already reviewed on the earlier Hook2 5 model.

CHIRP 2D scanning paired with DownScan imaging cover a large area so users can see more and plan better. However, this still leaves behind a lot of uncovered areas.

This is where SideScan imaging jumps in. SideScan covers a wide area on either side of the boat. Although this imaging mode does not cover as wide an area as 2D scanning, it captures more detail.

When used in conjunction, the three scanning modes create a wholesome image of the surroundings and leave little to the imagination.

SideScan imaging comes with the same limitation that plagues DownScan imaging. When operating at this scanning mode, the device can only scan up to a maximum distance of 300 ft.

Both the DownScan and SideScan imaging modes consume more power than traditional scanning. 2D scanning has a power output of 200W while these scanning modes have an output of 500W.

Pros

✅ CHIRP sonar scanning

✅ DownScan and SideScan imaging

✅ Integrated maps plus mapping functionality

✅ Compatible with third-party apps

Cons

❌ No network connectivity

Our Thoughts

The Hook2 5 TS from Lowrance sits at the doorstep of more advanced fish finding equipment.

It is the ideal tool if you have been fishing for some time and wish to take on fishing as a more serious hobby or maybe even a profession. The device shines with advanced scanning and GPS mapping.

6. Humminbird Helix 5 CHIRP DI – Affordable Detector with Advanced Scanning

Although we don’t cover many Humminbird products in this particular list, we have reviewed several in the past. There aren’t many manufacturers in the fish finder business that are as renowned as Humminbird.

The company has earned itself this recognition by consistently delivering reliable equipment. What we like about Humminbird products is that they come as a complete package.

Humminbird 410220

Product Highlights

The Helix 5 CHIRP DI is a member of the company’s popular Helix 5 product lineup. As the name suggests, the fish finder comes with CHIRP sonar detection.

The DI in the name stands for Down Imaging which captures a clear image of what is going on underneath the boat.

This helps with maneuvering as users can detect potentially hazardous underwater structures.

Down Imaging also gives users more control over fishing. It works to eliminate blind spots which are a common occurrence with conventional 2D scanning.

Although CHIRP captures a lot of detail, the clarity achieved through dedicated Down Imaging is incomparable.

It makes it much easier to differentiate between vegetation and clusters of fish which traditional scanning often struggles with.

Helix 5 comes with Humminbird’s signature Dual-Beam PLUS sonar detection. Powered by CHIRP technology, the transducer emits two simultaneous sonar beams at high- and low-level frequencies.

The low frequency covers a wide area for initial information. The high frequency then brings back richer and more detailed data from a specific area.

Through Dual-Beam PLUS, these two images can be merged into a single image as overlays. This makes for a clear and detailed image of the underwater area.

SwitchFire viewing shows users only what is relevant. It allows users to switch between Clear Mode for images that are wider but less detailed or Max Mode for a detailed display.

Pros

✅ Sharp 5-inch display

✅ CHIRP Dual-Beam PLUS sonar detection

✅ Humminbird Down-Imaging sonar

✅ SwitchFire viewing

✅ Clean user interface

Cons

❌ Lacks some scanning features

Our Thoughts

The Helix 5 CHIRP DI is a considerably affordable device that leaves little to be desired. It boasts a sharp screen big enough to display a lot of information at once.

Advanced sonar detection is always welcome and comes as an added advantage in this device.

7. Garmin Striker Plus 5cv – Best Budget Detector with Lake Mapping

Another budget fish finder from Garmin, the Striker Plus 5cv is the last offering from the company that we have reviewed for this article.

The device is among the more premium offerings from the Series 5 lineup, featuring CHIRP and ClearVU scanning. The device packs more mapping capabilities than we expected to see on a Garmin Striker budget device.

Garmin Striker Plus 5cv

Product Highlights

The Plus 5cv is a capable fish detector that comes with one of the best transducers from Garmin. The transducer is capable of variable-beam CHIRP 2D scanning.

Variable-beam scanning has a slight advantage over dual-beam CHIRP as it can detect a wider range of objects of varying densities.

When scanning in CHIRP mode, the transducer emits frequencies of 50 kHz, 77 kHz, and 200 kHz. The lower frequencies travel further and bring back a vague image of the surroundings.

This is a good starting point for fishermen as they can spot potential hotspots of activity to focus their efforts on.

For more detailed scanning, users can use a mix of high-frequency 2D scanning and Garmin’s dedicated ClearVU imaging.

Through ClearVU imaging, the transducer can capture photographic sonar images of the area underneath the boat.

For fishermen who values precision, this scanning mode uncovers a lot of opportunities for a healthier catch.

Another feature upgrade that gives the Plus 5cv an edge over the base Series 5 models is the addition of mapping functionality.

Although the base models come with basic navigational capability, they miss out on advanced features.

The device features Garmin’s Quickdraw Contours. Through the app, the device scans the areas you go to and creates HD maps as you explore and scan the area.

These maps have 1-foot contours and can be used for easier fishing and exploration on your next visit.

Pros

✅ CHIRP variable-beam scanning

✅ ClearVU down-imaging

✅ Quickdraw Contours mapping

✅ Precision GPS navigation

Cons

❌ No memory card slot

Our Thoughts

If you are considering any of the budget Garmin Striker series 5 devices, you should certainly consider the Plus 5cv.

It has tremendous advantages over the base models. You can take your time exploring these as you delve deeper into the world of recreational fishing.

8. Lowrance HOOK2 5X – Best Entry-Level Detector for Professionals

The Hook2 5X is a significant jump from the Hook 2 Series 4 both in price and performance. The device brings a bunch of feature upgrades and a larger screen size.

It also brings forward the same reliable sonar performance with the addition of DownScan Imaging.

HOOK2 5X

Product Highlights

The Hook2 5X comes with a powerful transducer capable of CHIRP sonar imaging. It then goes a bit further with the inclusion of DownScan Imaging.

The additional sonar detection mode is ideal for serious fishermen who takes pride in their catch.

CHIRP detection on this device is similar to what we saw in the previous series.

The dual-beam scanning covers a wide area as well as a specific area within the larger area. Thus, allowing users to get a better understanding of what they are working with.

When operating the device on the conventional 2D CHIRP scanning mode, the transducer emits sonar beams to a maximum distance of 500 ft.

This comes in handy for depth scanning if you are fishing in the deep sea. Fishermen can detect fish even if they are close to the seabed.

However, it should be noted that extended coverage comes at a cost of lower detail in images.

We see a considerable drop in the maximum scanning depth once we switch from 2D scanning to DownScan Imaging.

When operating in this mode, the transducer can only scan to a depth of 300 ft. Although it is quite a drop, the depth is still sufficient for most deep-sea fishing.

Moreover, it comes with the added advantage of more clarity and a near-photographic image of the underwater area.

Pros

✅ 5-inch HD display

✅ CHIRP dual-beam sonar

✅ DownScan Imaging

✅ Chart plotting capability

✅ GPS navigation

Cons

❌ No mapping features

Our Thoughts

The Lowrance Hook2 5X is the perfect fish imaging device for a fisherman who wants to take a step up from their basic fish finder.

It offers more control overfishing tasks and comes with advanced scanning and navigation features, including DownScan Imaging and chart plotting.

9. Garmin Striker 4cv – Best Budget 3D Imaging Device

Garmin Striker takes several spots on our list because its offerings are just that attractive. Here we look at a slightly pricier and considerably meatier member of the Striker Series 4.

The Striker 4cv offers a good balance between price and premium functionality with Garmin’s ClearVu technology. Fish finders in Garmin’s product lineup feature remarkable sonar innovations.

Garmin Striker 4cv fish finder

Product Highlights

The Striker 4cv is a prime example of what a fish detector is capable of when it prioritizes what’s important.

The device brings forward everything that makes the base model of the series 4 special. Then it builds on it to deliver an even more powerful user-experience.

The first thing you will notice about the Striker 4cv is the screen upgrade. At 4.3 inches, this detector comes with a slightly bigger screen than the Striker 4.

Although you won’t notice the difference at first glance, it does become apparent when you start using the device.

The resolution is a crisp 800 x 480 px, with Garmin’s backlit LCD display designed for optimal performance in all lighting conditions.

Where the Striker 4cv really differs from the base Striker 4 is its detection capabilities. Garmin ships the 4cv with a more feature-rich transducer.

The transducer comes packed with both CHIRP sonar detection as well as Garmin’s own ClearVu detection technology.

Through ClearVu, the device can capture a near-photographic image of the area underneath the vessel.

Standard CHIRP detection works on a variable dual-frequency. A low-frequency beam of 77 kHz covers a wide area and brings back basic information about the surroundings.

The high-frequency beam covers a smaller area but gathers more detailed information.

Pros

✅ Only slightly more expensive than the base model

✅ Deal-beam CHIRP sonar detection

✅ Garmin ClearVu down-imaging sonar

✅ Choice of different scanning modes

✅ GPS compatible with Quickdraw lake mapping

Cons

❌ No memory card slot

Our Thoughts

The Garmin Striker 4cv is marketed for those casual fishermen who want more control over their fishing trip.

Accurate lake mapping, reliable detection, and ClearVU allow users to fish with confidence and come back with the catch they desire.

10. Lowrance HOOK2 4X GPS – Best Auto-Tuning Detector

Lowrance has been manufacturing fishing equipment for many decades. The company is credited with manufacturing one of the first sonar detection devices for fishing purposes.

The value proposition of Lowrance is the affordable devices that can stand up against more expensive alternatives in terms of quality and performance.

Lowrance HOOK2 4X fish finder

Product Highlights

The company’s Hook2 lineup of devices comes as an upgrade to the original Hook fish finder. The Hook series received considerable praise for its capabilities and rich features. The Hook2 has several variants of which the 4X GPS is among the most affordable.

But don’t write it off just because of the low price, as it delivers reliable sonar detection along with GPS and other features.

The Hook2 4X may be a considerably barebones model when compared to its mightier counterparts.

However, you won’t be able to tell it apart from more expensive models just by looking at it. The build quality is as premium and rugged as that of any of the other devices in the series.

The device comes with a 4-inch display which has become a common occurrence on entry-level devices. The display is sharp and sufficiently backlit to be clearly visible even in brighter conditions.

Lowrance switches things up a bit by giving the display a portrait orientation. By doing this, the device can make full use of the limited space to deliver more information with clarity.

What makes the Hook2 perfect for newcomers is that it requires very little effort from the user. The detector comes with easy setup and auto-tuning sonar capability.

This allows users to spend more concentration on the actual fishing task and less time messing about with configuring the device.

The included transducer emits wide-angle beams that capture more of the surrounding area.

Pros

✅ Affordably priced

✅ Simple set up

✅ Auto-tuning sonar

✅ Easy to use

✅ GPS navigation

Cons

❌ Missing chart plotting features

Our Thoughts

For individuals who are just beginning their foray into fishing, the Lowrance Hook2 4X GPS is an ideal choice.

Its affordable price, smart user-interface, powerful detection capability, and GPS navigation ensure that it will be the perfect companion on your fishing trips.

How to Choose the Best Fish Finder GPS for the Money

We have picked out and reviewed some of the best fish finder GPS combo detectors on the market. However, it should be noted that this list is in no way comprehensive. There are several other devices out there that deliver tremendous value.

Finding these devices is where things may get complicated, especially for new users. There are plenty of great GPS fish finders you can choose from but there are also plenty of fish finders that are a waste of money. Differentiating between the two is where new users hit a roadblock.

Through this guide, we aim to touch on some of the most important considerations when buying a new fish finder.

As you review each one you will gain a better understanding of the varying capabilities of each device. Thus, you will be able to choose a device that caters to your particular fishing needs.

How to Choose the Best Detection Option?

A fish finder is a composition of two key elements. The element that gets features the most is the display that delivers all the relevant information.

However, a more integral part of the setup is the transducer. The transducer collects all the information that the display shows.

GPS fish finder

The transducer achieves this be sending out sonar pulses. These pulses return with data that is then translated into information. We have listed the types of transducers and the extent of their capabilities below:

Fixed Frequency Scanning

Budget fish finders come with basic sonar detection. These transducers emit sonar beams at a fixed frequency.

Normally, this is a low-frequency beam as these beams can cover a wider area. However, low-frequency sonar does not capture as much detail as high-frequency sonar beams.

Deal-Beam Scanning

A good budget transducer comes with dual-beam sonar detection. Transducers capable of this emit a high- and low-frequency beam.

The low beam captures a wide area as the high beam then delivers more detail about a much narrower area.

CHIRP Sonar Detection

CHIRP sonar technology is capable of emitting two or more beams at variable frequencies at the same time. Through this, users don’t have to manually switch between scanning modes. CHIRP sonar detection collects information from the two beams.

This is then delivered side-by-side or as overlays to give users a more enhanced image of the area they are scanning.

Advanced 3D Imaging

More advanced fish finders come with 3D imaging capabilities. Transducers that are capable of this generally emit variable high-frequency sonar beams. These capture a near-photographic image of the underwater surrounding.

This type of imaging comes in two forms – Down Imaging, and Side Imaging. Down Imaging captures the area directly underneath the vessel while Side Imaging captures the area on either side.

How to Choose Display for Fish Finder GPS Combo

The display is another important component of any fish finder. Regardless of how capable a fish finder is in sonar detection, all the collected information goes to waste if it can’t be delivered efficiently. A poor display renders even the most capable fish finder useless.

Budget fish finders come with smaller displays that average out at 4 inches. Although there are some extremely capable fish finders that feature a small display, these devices are only fit for recreational use.

Because of the size limitation, such devices can deliver limited information. For convenient usage, we recommend a display of 5 inches or above.

There are a number of devices that come with 5-inch displays which are also relatively affordable. The bigger the display is, the more information the device is capable of showing on a single screen.

This means less messing around with navigating between screens. Thereby, making it easier to interpret the wealth of information that your fish finder delivers.

However, what is even more important than the size of the display is its pixel density. A large display with low density will produce blurred and pixelated images.

This becomes a nuisance, makes it harder to read the text, and prevents you from interpreting images accurately.

Always ensure that the resolution correlates with the display size. For displays that are 4 inches or smaller, a decent pixel density is 480 x 320 px. For devices with a 5-inch display or larger, the minimum pixel density you should consider is 800 x 480 px.

At these resolutions, you will get a sharp and crisp display that allows you to interpret data with ease.

Best GPS Fish Finder FAQs

Buying a fish finder can be a complicated task for new fishermen. There are numerous variables and a lot of things to consider.

In this section, we answer some of the most frequently asked questions from potential buyers.

✅ Why Is it Important to Consider Sonar Beam Frequency?

The frequency of the sonar beam determines two things. It determines how wide the area is that is being scanned and it determines the level of detail that the scan captures. Low-beam scanning is ideal for deep water as it scans to a much greater depth while the high beam is recommended for shallow waters.

✅ Are Budget Fish Finders Any Good?

Some of our most favorite fish finders are budget options. There are several companies that deliver great value for money. For recreational fishing, we recommend that you buy a reliable budget fish finder rather than a more expensive one.

✅ Do I Need a Large Display?

The answer to this question will vary between users. Consider your utility. Do you need a device just for recreational fishing? If this is the case, a 4-inch fish finder should be sufficient for your needs. However, do consider the pixel density as mentioned in our guide above.

Conclusion

We hope that our recommendations and guide have left you more capable of selecting the best device for your needs.

It is important to remember that not every fish finder will suit everyone. Hence, always consider your utility before making a purchase decision.

Although all the devices we have reviewed are some of the best you can buy, there are a couple that captures our attention in particular.

The Simrad GO9 XSE is probably the best fish finder GPS combo we have reviewed. With extensive features, it is one of the most powerful devices we have come across.

For users on a budget who don’t want to compromise on performance, the Lowrance Hook2 5TS offers good value. It comes with CHIRP as well as both side- and down imaging so users can have greater control over their catch.

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