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Alex Walleye Fan

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I know this question has been probably asked many times, I am looking at getting a GPS. I am fairly inexperienced when it comes to GPS technology. The main reason for the GPS is to get the lake master chip as I will use it to mark spots on my favorite lakes for open/hard water fishing.

1. What is a good brand? (Bang for the buck)

2. Does GPS have a monthly fee?

3. I Would like a unit that can be used during sunny and dark conditions.

4. Are there any accessories that are a must have?

5. Durable/reliable. This will mainly be used during the winter.

6. Is a color monitor worth getting?

7. Besides marking locations, what other ways is a GPS beneficial in regards to fishing?

8. Where is the best place/deal to purchase one?

9. is the lake master software user friendly?

Is there anything else I should consider?

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Lawrence H20 or the color version H20-C. Both are the cream of the crop for a mid-range GPS.

Do a google search for both. I have seen better deals online rather than in stores.

Both are compatible with the lakemasters chip.

Hope that helps.

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1. What is a good brand? I've got a Lowrance H20c--tough to beat

2. Does GPS have a monthly fee? No

3. I Would like a unit that can be used during sunny and dark conditions. The H20c can be a bit difficult to see in direct light, but it's really not that bad. It is fantastic in teh dark.

4. Are there any accessories that are a must have? You get a 12v power cord that is a must--it eats AA batteries. The chip (Lakemaster is Navionics) is also a must. I've got a RAM mount for mine that is nice to have.

5. Durable/reliable. This will mainly be used during the winter. I've only had mine for a month, so I can't comment.

6. Is a color monitor worth getting? Yes.

7. Besides marking locations, what other ways is a GPS beneficial in regards to fishing? No more throwing out buoys. You can retrace routes. You can know distances to your spots and estimated arrival times. You can get accurate speeds for trolling. With a Lakemaster chip, it will get you to the lake. The lake maps will help you identify new spots.

8. Where is the best place/deal to purchase one? Not
. Buy from a reputable dealer.

9. is the lake master software user friendly? It's as easy as plugging the chip into the slot. Nothing else to mess with.

Is there anything else I should consider? Not off the top of my head.

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I'll step in and throw out my opinions here quick.

1. I have a Lorance H2O I Finder. For the lake, they are water proof and depending on batteries can float. I do not have the color. Some people swear by them but for me not worth the extra $100.

2. No monthly fee for any GPS

3. The H2O does have a light for night fishing. Sunny days will probably cause some issue for seeing the screen - just hold your hand over the unit.

4. The car charger will come with the unit - must have. Other than a RAM mount, I can't think of anything else. You can mount it to your snowmobile.

5. Winter use (cold weather) will slow the response time down on just about any unit that I have seen. I usually keep the unit in my inside coat pocket unit I get close to the spot.

6. I have never used the H2OC so someone else might have to give their opinion. It is about $100 difference.

7. I like the Routes the unit logs for you on the screen so you can follow the same path. You have the ability to name and save all your honey holes as well.

8. I bought mine off of hsolist last winter - saved about $20. It was brand new still in the package. I'm sure you can get them just about any sporting good store, Fleet Farm, etc.

9. The LM chip is easy to use in the unit (remove batteries and your rocking). the software for the computer is very nice and easy to use. You can print out certain areas with contour lines - very nice!

The only other thing that I should add is make sure the unit you buy is capable of using Lake Master chips. I believe Garmin utilizes navionics for their lake software. I know my brother first bought Navionics chips for his H2O and things were way off. I am not sure that they have corrected that yet or not.

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#1- Lowrance in my opinion because of the plug and play with the chips... I have an ifinder pro... cheeper than the h2o but has the same softwear.. its only water resistant and not water proof like the h2o.

#2 no

#3 They all are pretty much the same. Biggest decision will be B&W or color.

#4 Power adaptor should come with it.. if not get one! I have a cary case for mine as well that I really like.

#5 have had mine now 2 seasons.. and still going strong.. but I do take good care of it.

#6 I have a Black and White unit.. reason.. they dont eat batteries as fast.. which is important to me. Even if I bought again, I would still buy black and white.

#7 Finding your way back off the lake in bad weather... With the chips knowing where underwater dammage places could be.. All very important.

#8 Any major sporting good store.

#9 Yep, very... Put it in the unit and turn it on... sometimes you have to turn on the area of the state, but that isn't hard. I actually have the Nav and not the lake master... I fish in other states as well and the Nav chip has those states as well..

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One advantage to the color unit is that the cold doesn't slow it down. I was on URL the weekend of the 13th and had no problems.

Also, the reason I said not to buy from HSOList is that Lowrance won't honor your warranty if you don't buy from a retailer.

Here's my set-up (no, I'm not a Lowrance poster-boy grin.gif).


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I went with the H2Oc, and absolutely love it. I have Lakemaster chips, and they work flawlessly, except for the LOW chip which has to be loaded in(anyone else have that prob?). I am going to get the Navionics chip, next time I am by Cabelas for the smaller lake coverage they have. The H2Oc is easy to use, and man law friendly because you can just muddle through the menus, without even looking at the destructions.

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Go w/Lowrance for plug and play w/LM chip. Very simple and great to have. I got the H2Oc but would go /B&W if doing over. It eats batteries pretty fast. Has two light settings on screen, the low setting is fine at night, actually need the high to see in the sunlight.... I'm told the B & W is easier to see on low setting so batteries last longer.

I already had an X25 and the chips for my boat. Wanted a hand held for ice fishing. Very simple to use. For bang for the buck I would go w/H2O in B & W. Got mine at Reeds in Brainerd... Mills & Gander were sold out and Reeds matched best price.

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Sounds unanimous. But I have the Garmin 60csx and it is an awesome unit, Lakemaster chip works flawlessly.

I use mine for more than fishing though and turn by turn directions with the road maps is a great feature.

Another thing that I feel is a must if you will be using it for hunting is to get one with the electronic compass, much more easier to use in the woods.

The one draw back that I see with mine is not being able to use the Navionics chip but I am dealing with that. smirk.gif

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I have a Garmin 276C. And love it. It's big enough to be visibly day, night and in sunshine and to see all information you want, yet small enough to fit in your top coat pocket.

I have Lakemaster loaded on it as well as street and atlas and they all work extremely well.

Never had a problem with it and it is very versatile as I have a mount in my truck as well as one on the ATV or you can just hold it in your hand.

A few of my friends have the H2O and they love it. Just a matter of preference I guess.

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