Humminbird 409620-1 HELIX 5 DL Fish Finder
Being that the HELIX 5 has its own GPS unit it makes sense that you need to keep your maps up to date. The HELIX 5 will come pre-loaded with maps for your area and you can chart them with the UniMap cartography program installed on the software.
This software will allow you to mark hot spots to go back to fish. If you find your maps not up to your liking then you can use the microSD slot to install new, updated maps.
Selecting a Fish Finder Under 300
If you are a seasoned angler or just the hobbyist with money to spare then you should consider checking out your own fish finder. Fish finders are advanced pieces of technology that allow you to see what’s going on underneath your boat so that you can pick the right spots to fish. There are many kinds of fish finders available and, as you probably realize by now, much to learn about them. We’ll lay out some important information to help you get to the right fish finder for you.
Style of Fish Finder
As with all things in life, fish finders too come with a variety of options. While these fish finders may look similar to one another on the shelf, each piece of tech offers a variety of different benefits and cons that you will want to be aware of. When you are out on the water you want to know that you have everything on hand you will need. Let’s break down the three different styles of fish finders on the market.
- Standalone – These are dedicated machines that show you everything going on beneath your boat. You’ll get the largest display for what you are seeing as well as the most focused fish finder — no frills. This means that you won’t have a GPS on hand when utilizing this, just sonar.
- Combo Systems – Combo systems will feature both your fish finder and a GPS to help you plot out your charts. This model will be significantly more expensive than the standalone, dedicated units but you will get a much more in-depth product. If you have a dedicated GPS outside of your fish finder than the combo is not required.
- Network Systems – These are the top of the line, best of the best, most fulfilled models on the market. Networked systems include everything you need to tackle a day on the water: your GPS, a radar system, live video and then a whole slew of bonus features. Network based systems can be partnered up with your smart phone and you can use monitors, or your phone, as an additional display.
Beneath the Surface
You’ve looked over the variety of options above and finally have an idea as to what you are going to be purchasing. Hold up, we aren’t quite ready to spend any money yet. Let’s break down some of the important tech specs you need to understand before we talk about our favorite model on the market.
- Transducer – Transducers are the heart of what makes your machine do its job. Transducers are essentially live antennae that bounce out sound waves in order to receive the echoes coming back, thus creating your sonar effect.
- Frequency – The frequency of your transducer will decide just what you are seeing underneath the water. The shallower your water, the higher your frequency should be and vice versa (50, 83, 192, and 200 kHz are the most common).
- Cone Angle – Getting a proper reading from your transducer can be done by selecting your cone angle and this matters based on where you install the device. Imagine your transducer as a flashlight beam extending outward. The wider the beam, the more area is covered.
- Power Consumption – When you are looking at a fish finder you will need to decide how powerful it needs to be. You should base your power on the type of water that you routinely fish in. Is your water shallow or are you traversing deep and murky waters? The harder it is for your waves to get through the water, the higher your power consumption needs to be.
- Display – Finally, we are going to be talking about the display of your fish finder. You’ll see that there are a few different options out there: monochrome, color display, and contrast display. Above all else you will want a screen that offers you high-resolution so that you can adequately make out and interpret the details being fed through your fish finder. We are personally a huge fan of color fish finders as the more advanced units can feed you specific pieces of intel regarding what it is reading: the size of the fish, what kind of fish it might be and so on.
Humminbird 409620-1 HELIX 5 DL Fish Finder
Alright, so we’ve gotten enough information to understand what a fish finder does, how it does it, and what you are looking for in a unit. Now that we’ve done all of the mental legwork, let’s talk about our favorite model on the market: the Humminbird 406920-1 HELIX 5.
When we first started shopping for a fish finder to add to our boat we wanted something that could chart the lake, move us in the right direction with GPS, and feed us a colorful display of information to utilize. The HELIX 5 essentially does everything we asked and more.
First off, let’s point out that the HELIX 5 has a vibrant color screen that is back-lit and easy to interpret. The HELIX 5 features 256 color display depth that is perfect for the down imaging that you are going to be pulling up to the surface. You’ll be able to easily see exactly what it is that you are hunting after.
The power of the HELIX 5 is pretty impressive as well as you are getting a ton of usage out of a product that requires a single 12V battery. The product’s lifespan is great and the Humminbird team firmly stands behind what they’ve made. Looking past the literal power source of the HELIX 5 you’ll see that this fish finder has a 4,000 watt power output for precise mapping of the waters below you. The information that gets sent to your screen is rendered out quickly for on the spot consumption.
The Humminbird HELIX 5 is a great piece of technology that comes out of the box ready to use. The device is a little heavy, just over 10 pounds, while measuring in at 8.5 x 6 x 4 inches. You’ll notice immediately that this hefty piece of tech can take a hit and you won’t have to worry about it in your boat. All things considered you can’t beat a fish finder that has this many perks with a low price tag.
Other Top Selling Fish Finders Under 300 Dollars