Best Types of Fish Finders for Anglers 2024

Fishing is changing fast. Thanks to new tech like advanced fish finders, anglers have amazing tools. These tools show fish, depth, and what’s below the water. As we move from basic to complex fish finders, the game has changed. Now, there are fish finders that give 360-view and show what’s happening right now. For those into kayak, ice, or deep-sea fishing, top brands like Simrad, Humminbird, Lowrance, and Garmin have great models for all needs and budgets.

Key Takeaways

  • Fishing technology has advanced with the development of fish finders.
  • Modern fish finders offer precise displays of fish, depth, and underwater structures.
  • Essential for different fishing types like kayak fishing, ice fishing, and deep-sea fishing.
  • Consider popular brands like Simrad, Humminbird, Lowrance, and Garmin for various fishing conditions.
  • Fish finders now provide 360-degree views and real-time imaging capabilities.

Introduction to Fish Finder Technology in 2024

Fish finder technology in 2024 combines the best of both worlds: innovation and growth. Since their inception as simple depth measurement tools, fish finders have come a long way. They now include features like GPS, side imaging, and live sonar. These additions make underwater viewings clearer and spot fish better.

Evolution of Fish Finders

The journey of fish finders is incredible. They started with measuring just the depth. But, with time, they got sonar systems for detailed underwater maps. Today, fish finders can even tell what fish are below and work with GPS for great fishing spots planning.

There’s a wide array of depth finders in the market, ranging from 3 to 13 inches in size. They come with various sonar types to meet different fishing needs. CHIRP sonar stands out for better separating targets.

Technological Advances

Fish finders have seen big technological jumps. They now offer mapping, navigation, and detailed underwater viewing features. Brands like Humminbird, Garmin, and more are leading with cutting-edge models. These models push the boundaries of fish finding technology.

Advancements in fish finder technology now include wireless and app options. These expanding features cater to anglers of all types, with prices ranging from under $200 to over $1000. This broad price range meets various fishing needs and budgets.

BrandKey FeaturesPrice Range
HumminbirdSide Imaging, Mega Imaging, GPS Integration$200 – $1500+
GarminLiveScope, Detailed Maps, Ultra-High-Definition Scanning Sonar$300 – $2000+
LowranceFishReveal, CHIRP Sonar, C-Map Genesis Live Mapping$150 – $1200+
SimradDownScan Imaging, StructureScan HD, Integrated GPS$300 – $2000+

Best Overall Fish Finder: Humminbird Apex 13 Mega SI+ Chartplotter

The Humminbird Apex 13 Mega SI+ Chartplotter is a top choice for fish finders. It combines top-notch features with easy use. This fish finder stands out among the best in 2024 with its design.

Features and Benefits

The Humminbird Apex 13 shines with its Full-HD Display and Dual Core Processor. Its 13-inch screen shows detailed underwater views. It’s easy to use, perfect for all anglers.

Key benefits include:

  • Compatibility: It works well in different fishing spots with MEGA Live and MEGA 360 support.
  • Imaging Types: It offers 2D, Down Scanning, and Side Scanning sonar for a complete view.
  • Target Market: Made for saltwater but works just as well in the U.S. lakes and rivers.

Advantages and Disadvantages

This fish finder has many great points. It’s known for its clear images, easy-to-use design, and strong construction. Yet, it also has its downsides.

  • High-definition, clear underwater imagery.
  • User-friendly interface with dual touch screen controls.
  • Wide compatibility with various transducers and fishing environments.
  • High cost, with prices ranging between $4,299 – $5,299.
  • Complex learning curve for beginners due to advanced features.

Overall, the Humminbird Apex 13 Mega SI+ Chartplotter is cutting-edge and practical. It’s a great option for anglers serious about quality.

Best Budget Fish Finder: Simrad GO9 XSE Chartplotter

Finding a cheap fish finder that still works well is tough. But, the Simrad GO9 XSE Chartplotter is a top pick for budget seekers. This finder offers fine sonar imaging at a good price, standing out in a sea of budget fish finders.

Types of Fish Finders Simrad GO9 XSE review

Key Features

This Simrad model has a 9-inch touch screen, making it friendly to navigate. It includes a 3-in-1 transducer for side, down, and standard sonar. For its price, this setup provides outstanding sonar imaging, giving clear images similar to pricier models.

It’s built for quality without the hefty price tag. Side and down imaging are great for near shore or shallow fishing. They help you see under the water better.

Performance Analysis

The GO9 XSE is quite the performer, even with its low price. Its clear images and easy interface rank up there with more costly units. Although it takes a bit longer to start, it’s steady and good for most fishing trips.

It really shines with detailed sonar images. With its distinctive side and down imaging, this unit exceeds similarly priced models. Perfect for anyone wanting high-end performance for less.

The next table has the key details for the Simrad GO9 XSE Chartplotter:

Screen Size9-inch Full Touchscreen
SidescanYes, included in 3-in-1 transducer
DownscanYes, included in 3-in-1 transducer
Traditional SonarYes, included in 3-in-1 transducer
Imaging ModesSide Imaging, Down Imaging

Best Types of Fish Finders

Fish finders have come a long way, making fishing much better for anglers. Three main types stand out because they bring unique benefits.

360-Degree Imaging Fish Finders

360-degree sonar has changed how we look at what’s below the surface. For example, the Garmin ECHOMAP with LiveScope Plus lets you see all around your boat. This is super useful for ice fishing or exploring new spots. Imagine being able to see everything in a full circle around you to find fish and their hiding spots.

Down Imaging and Side Imaging Fish Finders

Down and side imaging are must-haves for many anglers. They give a clear look under and beside your boat. The Humminbird SOLIX 10 CHIRP MEGA SI G3 is a top pick for its clarity. And the Humminbird Helix 7 CHIRP MEGA SI is affordable but still very good. Down imaging shows fish right under the boat, while side imaging covers more area to find where the fish are.

Live Imaging Fish Finders

Live imaging fish finders are becoming more popular. They give live updates on fish positions, helping you fish better. The Lowrance Elite FS 7 is great for kayaks. It’s portable and uses the latest imaging tech for a better fishing experience.

These advanced fish finders are essential for anglers wanting to up their fishing game. They utilize the newest sonar and imaging tech to fish smarter.

Best Portable Fish Finder: Garmin Striker Cast GPS Castable Sonar

The Garmin Striker Cast GPS takes the lead in portable fish finders. It’s loved for being easy to use and having many functions. You can cast it off the shore or into the ice. This makes it a top pick for those on the hunt for fish. It has advanced features, like making maps and finding fish underwater. This makes it a great tool for all kinds of fishing.

best portable fish finder

Portability Features

This device is very light, only 2.6 oz (75 g), and can work for 10 hours on one charge. It sends out sonar data for up to 60 m (200′). It also comes with a long 16.4 ft (5 m) tether. This makes it ideal for any kind of fishing trip. Its small size makes it easy to carry. This means you’re ready for fishing no matter where you go.

Use Cases and Best Practices

The Garmin Striker Cast GPS works well in all fishing conditions. It has a strong GPS system and can save up to 5000 spots. It’s great for casting from the shore too. For ice fishing, it has a special mode that’s perfect for finding fish. By using it the right way, you’ll save energy and it’ll be a dependable tool for a long time.

  • Lightweight and Portable: Easy to carry and transport.
  • Long Battery Life: 10 hours of continuous use.
  • Broad Streaming Range: Effective up to 60 m (200′).
  • High Capacity GPS: Stores 5000 waypoints, facilitating location tracking.
  • Versatile Use: Compatible with varied environments, from open waters to ice fishing.

Top Fish Finder Brands in 2023

In 2023, the fish finder market showcases many excellent brands. Garmin, Humminbird, Simrad, and Lowrance lead the pack with innovative and quality products. Garmin’s ECHOMAP with LiveScope Plus is awarded as the Best Overall, thanks to LiveScope technology. This tech boosts fishing success a lot.

leading fish finder manufacturers

Pro fishers know the value of good electronics on the water. Products like the Humminbird SOLIX 10 CHIRP MEGA SI G3 and the Helix 7 CHIRP MEGA SI are trusted by many. They, along with models by Lowrance and Humminbird, prove their worth out on the lake.

Fish finder companies are always making things better by using the latest tech. For example, Humminbird offers many screen sizes, from 5 inches to 15 inches in the Helix line. Garmin is famous for LiveScope, which gives fishers clear, live views underwater, helping them catch more fish.

The following table shows important details about these top brands:

BrandPopular ModelsScreen Sizes (inches)
GarminECHOMAP LiveScope Plus7 – 24
HumminbirdSOLIX 10, Helix 75 – 19
LowranceElite FS 75 – 12
SimradGO9 XSE7 – 12

These top brands keep pushing forward. They aim to give fishers the best tools for a great fishing trip. Their focus on new ideas and quality makes them stand out in the fish finder world.

Explore more on the best fish finders here

Advanced Fish Finder Features to Look for in 2024

In 2024, the world of fishing tech is seeing big changes. New features are making fishing better for everyone. With GPS and high-definition maps, fishing has never been more precise.

GPS Integration

The role of GPS in fish finders is huge. It guides you to the best spots and helps you get back to them. Models like the Lowrance Elite FS 7 prove that GPS isn’t just about finding fish. It’s also about planning smarter routes.

High-Definition Mapping

High-definition maps are key advanced fish finder features. They let you see underwater like never before. Fish finders like the ones from Humminbird’s HELIX series bring clear imaging. They help spot where fish might be hiding.

In 2024, water resistance and easy controls are essential, especially for smaller boats. Features like touch screens and monitoring apps make using these devices simple. They help anglers at every level have a great time fishing.

Fish Finder Buying Guide for Anglers

When buying a fish finder, you need to think about several things. These aspects will make fishing more fun and ensure you get what you need.

Factors to Consider

Start by looking at the fish finder’s wattage. Wattage affects how deep you can see. For each 100 watts at 50 Hz, you get roughly 400 more feet of depth. Higher Hz, like 200, adds 100 feet for every 100 watts. So, the more power, the better for different kinds of fishing spots.

The size and quality of the screen matter a lot, too. Fishfinders can have screens from 3.5 to 12 inches. A bigger screen lets you see clearly, and high resolution is key for sharp images. Aim for the best resolution you can afford to spot fish and structures under the water.

It’s also good to have sonar like side imaging and CHIRP. Side imaging helps see around your boat. CHIRP uses many frequencies to show more detail in fish and structures. These features are crucial for a complete fishing setup.

Consider how you’ll mount the fish finder, depending on your boat and fishing habits. There are different mounting options, like transom, thru-hull, in-hull, and trolling motor mounts. Picking the right one makes installing and using the fish finder easier.

User Reviews and Ratings

Real user feedback on fish finders is very helpful. It can tell you a lot about how they perform in the water. Looking at reviews and ratings helps you understand how good different models are. For example, Garmin fish finders with LiveScope get a lot of praise for their tech and size range.

Brands like Humminbird and Lowrance are popular for being easy to use and having great options. Models like Humminbird’s Helix 7 CHIRP MEGA SI and Lowrance’s Elite FS 7 are well-known for good images and use on kayaks.

Reading what other people say about fish finders can highlight both positive and negative points. This can guide you towards the best choice for your fishing adventures.

ModelKey FeaturesUser Ratings
Garmin ECHOMAP with LiveScope PlusBest Overall, LiveScope Technology4.8/5
Humminbird SOLIX 10 CHIRP MEGA SI G3Best Side Imaging, Touchscreen Display4.7/5
Humminbird Helix 7 CHIRP MEGA SIBest Budget, Clear Imaging4.6/5
Lowrance Elite FS 7Best for Kayaks, Mapping Features4.5/5
Humminbird Ice Helix 7 CHIRP GPS G4 All SeasonBest Portable, Versatile4.8/5


Choosing the right fish finder can really boost your fishing game. These gadgets show you fish on a screen. They also help you see what’s at the bottom of the water. This info helps you cast your line better and possibly catch more fish. Think about what you need and check reviews from both experts and other users before you buy.

If you want to see more under the water, pick a fish finder with side imaging. This gives you a wide, clear picture of what’s below. GPS and maps in some fish finders can guide you on water you aren’t familiar with. They also let you mark spots you like to fish at. For correct depths, especially for kayak or ice fishing, a reliable depth finder is a must. It helps make sure you’re at the right depth for fishing.

It’s important to know what the data on your fish finder means. Fish are shown as arches, colored to show their depth. The top colors often mean fish right under you. Always use accurate depth finders. They tell you the depth right. The stronger the sound waves they send out, the clearer your info will be. This makes fishing with a fish finder even better. Keep in mind what Carl Lowrance said. 90% of fish are in 10% of the water. Use your fish finder well to find those spots.


What are the best types of fish finders for anglers in 2024?

In 2024, top fish finders for anglers include 360-Degree Imaging, Down Imaging, Side Imaging, and Live Imaging types. Each has special sonar tech for different fishing needs.

How has fish finder technology evolved over the years?

Fish finders have grown from simple tools into high-tech devices. They now show clear pictures of underwater life and terrains, making fishing more precise and rewarding.

What are the features and benefits of the Humminbird Apex 13 Mega SI+ Chartplotter?

The Humminbird Apex 13 Mega SI+ has a simple interface and great imaging. It also features dual screens, a forward transducer, and detailed maps. This makes it ideal for serious anglers.

What makes the Simrad GO9 XSE Chartplotter a good budget fish finder?

The Simrad GO9 XSE is a great value for inshore fishing. It has a large touchscreen, clear images, and side and down imaging. These features offer quality performance at an affordable price.

What types of fish finders are most effective for different fishing scenarios?

For ice fishing and new waters, 360-Degree Imaging Fish Finders are crucial. To spot fish in open areas and structures, use Down and Side Imaging. Live Imaging is perfect for real-time tracking under the water.

Why is the Garmin Striker Cast GPS Castable Sonar considered the best portable fish finder?

The Garmin Striker Cast is top rated for its portability and versatility. It fits all fishing types, offering mapping, sonar, and a flasher mode. Its affordability and lightweight design make it stand out.

Which are the top fish finder brands known for quality and innovation?

Garmin, Humminbird, Simrad, and Lowrance are leaders in quality and innovation. They offer fish finders that match specific fishing situations and regularly introduce advanced features.

What advanced fish finder features should anglers look for in 2024?

For 2024, look for fish finders with advanced GPS and map abilities. These features will aid in navigation, finding good spots, and understanding the underwater world.

What factors should be considered when buying a fish finder?

When choosing a fish finder, think about screen size, sonar tech, and how easy it is to use. Don’t forget about GPS, which is important for finding fish. Check user reviews for insights on performance.

How do user reviews and ratings help in choosing a fish finder?

User reviews are vital for understanding a fish finder’s real performance. They give insight into the device’s quality, helping buyers make informed choices based on user experiences.
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