Updated: May 29, 2015

Best Humminbird Fishfinder:

Guide to Humminbird Fish Finders - As they say, a bad day of fishing is better than a good day of work. But why ever have a bad day of fishing? With a fishfinder, you can more accurately pinpoint locations that will yield a great catch. This is a device which uses active sonar to locate fish. It then displays the data on either an LCD or CRT screen. Why use a fishfinder? To find fish of course! Fishfinders are great for sport anglers, those who catch fish for sustenance, and even parents who want their children to experience the thrill of the catch. But as ESPN says, "All fish finders are definitely not created equal". In fact, many of the nation's top bass anglers refer to a great deal of the monitors as "'junk.'" If you want to get a fishfinder that you won't feel like throwing in the lake, then read on.

This is your guide to finding fishfinders that actually find fish. In this guide, we'll take a look at the best Humminbird fishfinders on the market, and what you should look for. Gary Dobyns, a world class angler, says, "A bunch of [fishfinders] are junk. They don't have enough power or pixels. If they don't have enough power or pixels, they'll give you false readings. The crappy ones will tell you that there's fish everywhere when you turn them on. And - guess what? - there aren't." Dobyns identifies two of the most important features of fishfinders - how powerful they are and screen resolution (pixels). Other key features include: transducers, display, and price. To find the right product for your needs, you need to look at each of these factors. To cut right to the chase, you can find all you need in Humminbird's line of fishfinders. We'll tell you why and how to pick the best model to make every day a good fishing day.

Why Choose a Humminbird Fishfinder?

- Humminbird is the original - and still the best. The innovative products used widely by professional and recreational fishermen are either Humminbirds or inspired directly by Humminbird. From entry-level SmartCast systems to advanced Matrix fishfinders, you can find what you need - but it can be a little overwhelming. Where do you start?

How to Choose a Humminbird Fishfinder -- The Technical Stuff

Start by keeping the type of fishing you do in mind. Do you fish small ponds? Larger lakes? In the ocean? Would you rather wait until there's a few inches of ice on the lake to fish? The type of fishing you do is a very important consideration for a few reasons. It will help you determine how much power you need for your transmitter and what frequency will be best. For instance, if you enjoy fishing small ponds, you do not need as much power as you would fishing large lakes. A finder such as the Humminbird PiranhaMAX 230 Portable will be ideal. It has a moderate amount of peak-to-peak power, 800 watts. On the other hand, if you want to go fishing in the Great Lakes, the 788c Combo would be a better choice. It has a peak-to-peak power output of 4000 watts. Higher wattage units tend to be more efficient, and they are certainly more powerful. With lower wattage units, you may find your readouts are slower. You should avoid units with less than 500-600 watts. If you are fishing in more shallow waters, choose a Humminbird fishfinder that has a higher frequency; conversely, fishing in deeper waters requires a lower frequency. So how do fish finders work? Now we move on to transducers. Transducers send out the sound waves that will be used to determine the position of fish in a particular area. These will have a cone angle, meaning that they start narrow and widen as they travel deeper into the water. You will see that the cone angles will range from 9 degrees to over 60. As the angle gets wider, it increases the area that is viewed. Very wide angles lose sensitivity, so anglers usually opt for an angle between 16 and 20. Also determine if you want a single beam standard transducer, dual beam, triple beam, or side beam. A dual transducer covers more area than the single and so on. The Humminbird PiranhaMas 230 has a dual beam transducer, while the 788c has a dual beam plus. The difference is greater detail, a wider beam, and the ability to view beams side by side, blended, or separately. If more detail and wider coverage area is important to you, upgrading may be very well worth your while. A dual plus transducer is available on Humminbird's 1100, 900, 700, 500, 300, and Matrix series. You can browse the top selling Humminbird fish finders online here.

What Can You See on Your Humminbird Fishfinder?:

What good is a dual plus transducer or side image if your screen is fuzzy, unclear, or lacks pixelation? Having a good display system is essential - otherwise, you might as well cast aimlessly. Your first decision will be color or black and white. Color costs more, but it will provide greater detail. Black and white will work perfectly well for most anglers. Next is your screen size and resolution. To use our previous examples, the more basic PiranhaMax 230 has a four-inch screen with a 160v x 132h resolution. While this is sufficient for most fishermen, some prefer a sharper image. The 788c provides a five-inch screen with a 640v x 640h resolution. There are different pixel counts for different levels of clarity. Choosing a backlit screen also adds to the convenience and versatility of your unit. The Humminbird 788ci Color Fishfinder Combo with Internal GPS has a 1500 ft depth capability and reviews are very positive for this model. The 700 series has lots of professional technology and the pixel clarity is unmatched. Owners say it provides for "great contrast and color" and the 5 inch diagonal screen is plenty big.

How Much Does a Humminbird Fishfinder Cost?:

This is often the biggest factor in determining which model you choose. A larger budget will mean that you can choose more power, better resolution, and dual, dual plus, tri, and side beams. What are the differences in price? The PiranhaMax 150 is sonar only. It has a single beam and four-inch 160v x 128h screen. This costs about $80 on Amazon. The more advanced PiranhaMax 230 costs about $200 and the 788c can be found for roughly $600. On the high end, you can purchase the 1197c for $2500. This model has dual beam imaging, network module, side imaging, and GPS. GPS can be an invaluable tool, but it does add on to the price. However, if you need a GPS anyway, you may want to save money and buy a fishfinder with GPS. No matter what your fishing style or budget, you can find the right Humminbird for your needs. When you want to have a great creel count and a great day, Humminbird should definitely go in your tackle box. See the most popular Humminbird fishfinders here.