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Jarnotski

Side Image Sonar...Worth It?

24 posts in this topic

The idea of getting an image of whats down there is intriguing to me. However, is it really worth the price for these units? I would like to buy one but there may be better things to spend that money on.

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Absolutely.

I bought a 797 last year this time and the more I use it the more and more I like it. It not only lets you find structure, transitions but also lets you see baitfish and fish. When you find fish on verticle sonar you know there is a fish or two below but this lets you see if there are more off to the side so you have a good idea of how many are there. You can find piles of small rock, weeds, sunken trees etc. Even when drifting sideways you can actually see fish coming in from a ways out and when you move over it you will see it on the verticle and often get hit or catch the fish. If you miss it you will see it leave out the other side. As you can probably tell I am totally sold on these units. My only problem now is to find a way to buy the 997. Do a search on side imaging in FM and you will see many posts with some posted images of structure fish trees sunken boats etc. I will never again go with out SI. There is a unofficial humminbird site too that has more pics and info. Do a internet search of side imaging and you will find that.

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While I currently do not have a hummingbird,a friend of mine has one.I would love to spend a day out on the water just looking at different structures with it.I think it will take some time to learn to use it well but I definately can see one in my future.I do think they are worth the coin.

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I have 2 997 units in my boat. I can honestly say, that the learning curve with them is not a short one. But once you learn how to use it. It will blow your mind!

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Yes Yes Yes!! used my 798 all of about 3 hours now and im glad i bought it!!

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Will the new Humming Birds work with a Lowrance 332 in the boat also?

Will one affect the other in any way??

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I have a Lowrance X15 in the boat with the bird and no problems. I would think it would be the same with the 332

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I have 2 997 units in my boat. I can honestly say, that the learning curve with them is not a short one. But once you learn how to use it. It will blow your mind!

Bully smile

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The side viewing frequency wouldn't interfer with Lowrance. If you were using them both for down viewing they would affect each other as soon as you got in deep enough water that the transducer cones overlapped.

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That was a very good price on those units PJ smile

I can honestly say, that the learning curve with them is not a short one. But once you learn how to use it. It will blow your mind!

Yep, agree 100%. I am going on my second open water season with my SI unit. I have only been on the water this season once swo far and it was not in my boat or with SI. I have been playing around with it in the garage to relearn what I forgot over the winter grin

I went from a Humminbird Matrix system to an SI unit. What a world apart. SI is a very nice feature for the river, but the unspoken quality of these units is the sonar. When scouting out new spots, the SI/Sonar split screen is the only way. To be able to see off to the starboard or portside is an awesome tool. When the spot is know and the structure has been picked out, full sonar goes on in my boat wink. Unbelievable detail and colors.

So, do not just get an Humm for the SI feature, but get it for the sonar quality also. You will be very happily surprised wink

PJ, does the new 798's have built in memory now for saving images?

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I wish I would have seen those prices sooner...WOW! Let us know if you have anymore that come in!

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PJ, does the new 798's have built in memory now for saving images?

The 798s have 2 card slots so you can run a map card in one slot and save images to a blank card in the other slot at the same time.

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Now that is an idea grin Cool and thanks PJ.

I just use the little box my Lakemaster chip came in, put some Velcro on the back of it and mounted it next to my Humm unit. I run a Lakemaster chip in my XOG on the dash , then a Nav. in my Humm also on the dash, and have the water tight Lakemaster chip box right next to them stuck on with Velcro with the blank SD card in it. The little box from Lakemaster possibly could hold 6 SD cards.

Should work pretty slick this year. smile

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I need to get out fishing with someone to check the Humminbirds out. I will be buying a new setup soon.

I really didn't take their product very seriously as I didn't believe the SI would work well and I thought the Lowrance's sonar was better.

Maybe not?

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I need to get out fishing with someone to check the Humminbirds out. I will be buying a new setup soon.

I really didn't take their product very seriously as I didn't believe the SI would work well and I thought the Lowrance's sonar was better.

Maybe not?

Old mindsets are tough to change, but you can't be scared to try new things (or older things again for a reality check). Have you driven a Ford lately?

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I'm not scared to try things I just find usually they look way too good to be true.

I will try to see them in action sometime.

For a grand I sure wish you could get a bigger screen though!

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I ended up going with a 798C SI in the boat this year. I've only had it out twice, but yes, it's a little hard to see the side imaging on a smaller screen on the water, especially if it's in split screen with GPS or the downward sonar. The dual memory slots are nice though (one for the navi, one for recording). The nice part is that I will record on the water, then replay it at home where I can study it and pause. The best part is being able to then mark the spots at home, so the next time you're out, you can hit those. Yes, they are pricey, but man are they cool.

One suggestion is change the side scan setting to 50 or 100 ft (mine was preset to 148ft on each side). This will help blow the images up a bit.

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I had the opportunity to watch one of the Hummingbird units for a day. It is step forward in sonar technology, but I think I will be content to use my Lowrance 510c until the price on these units comes down. It will come down………substantially, just like the color units.

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yea id love to have the 997 but the price would kill an already spend pocket book.

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We put one on our boat this year and I have nothing but good things to say about it. I can identify, stucture, fish and baitfish.

As a previos poster pointed out the learning curve is a bit steep and there are plenty of guys here that will help you with the right settings.

I troll plugs around at slow speeds watching the side scan until I come upon a large pile of fish. I stop and slip bobber. This has been one of the best years fishing that I have ever had and I would recommend this unit to anyone.

Is it worth the price? I guess that would depend on your budget. However, I would compare this unit to ice fishing without a flasher. Sure you can do it but why would you?

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Ed, If youre trolling, have you used the shaded depths feature yet. If not... DO IT. Next to SI, its the coolest feature of the unit.

The only time I regretted buying my 997, was when I gave them my credit card number, everything after that point in time has been completely enjoyable.

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A few people asked if we would have more 797c Side Imaging units on closeout. We do. The details are HERE in the store sales forum.

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