Friday, December 30, 2016

Lowrance Elite & Hook Ice Fishing Settings Cheat Sheet

I have a new product available for sale for only $5 shipped to your door anywhere in US or Canada.  This cheat sheet will help you set up your Lowrance Elite or Hook unit in 10 easy steps for ice fishing.  There are exact menu instructions on how to set the unit and a few tips on what settings work best for the conditions you face.

These are small enough to fit in your Ice Machine kit to keep handy for reference and are laminated.

Send $5 with PayPal to me along with your mailing address and I'll have your cheat sheet in the mail right away. Link to my PayPal $5

If you have a Lowrance Elite 4, Elite 4x, Elite 5, Elite 5x, Elite 7, Elite 9, Hook 4, Hook 4x, Hook 5, Hook 5x, Hook 7 in any model like Base, HDI, CHIRP or Ice Machine this cheat sheet will work for you.

Thanks for your support!

Lowrance Elite 5 CHIRP Ice Fishing Settings Hook 5

Ice fishing is one of the most important times to ensure you have your sonar unit set up correctly.  When fishing vertically while ice fishing you can see everything going on down below on your screen if your unit is set up correctly.  In this video I go through the settings on a Lowrance Elite 5 CHIRP Ice Machine (same unit as the new 2016 model Hook 5).  These settings will apply to all Elite 4, Elite 5, Elite 7, Hook 4, Hook 5 and Hook 7 whether it is the base model, HDI or CHIRP.

Try these settings out the next time you are on the ice and I guarantee you will have great success marking your lure and fish!

Saturday, December 24, 2016

Better Understand Your Sonar - Read This!!

I wanted to share the article that I read years ago that changed my understanding of sonar from a beginner level to advanced in a matter of minutes.  This article is so detailed on how sonar works and then applies that information to actual situations you will face on the water.  Here is the intoduciton to the article by Luke Morris.  Click the link at the end to open a full version of it.

Deciphering Sonar Charts
By Luke Morris


This tutorial or guide is to provide rudimentary education into sonar principles and applications, based on accepted electronic theory and principles, to explain how, what, and why your sounder displays sonar echo data.

It would not be possible to illustrate every possible example of sonar chart data you may see. However with a basic understanding of ho
w sounders and transducers operate, and how that information is depicted on the screen, you should be able to quickly and accurately interpret all of the myriad of different chart examples you may encounter.

This tutorial is written from a layman’s perspective here to continue reading the article Deciphering Sonar by Luke Morris

Friday, December 23, 2016

HDS Carbon – Should You Upgrade?

Lowrance released the HDS Carbon series units on December 15th to the public and physically looking at them you can’t tell much difference from a HDS Gen 3 unit.  It’s what is under the plastic that counts in the Carbon units. 

Screen Upgrades

Lowrance has made improvements on the screen quality of the Carbon units over the Gen 3 models.  Gen 3 units were by far the best unit available for fishermen in regards to sunlight read ability in 2016.  The new SolarMax HD Screen boast wider viewing angles, look just as bright even when wearing polarized sunglasses, and have much more vibrant colors and whites. 

The screen resolution had increased on the 7 and 9” models while the 12” remained the same.  You now have a 1024x600 resolution on the 7” model over 800x480 on the Gen 3.  The 9” model now has 1280x720 over the 800x480 on the Gen 3 models.

Faster Processor

This is something Lowrance has needed for a LONG time.  On my HDS 9 Gen2 if I split the screen between Down Imaging, 200kHz and mapping it would be very slow to respond.  The Gen 3 was an improvement, but still had some issues lagging when compared to other units.  Now that the Carbon has a Dual-Core processor and twice the RAM that the HDS Gen 3 models have, there shouldn’t be any issues with it supporting all its features at once.

Dual Channel CHIRP

This feature will now allow you to use the 9 pin black StructureScan port on the back of the unit to connect a second or dual channel CHIRP transducer.  In most case this will require a 7 pin blue to 9 pin black adapter cable.  On the water what this means is you can view a high and low, low and medium, or high and medium CHIRP frequency at the same time.  This will really benefit offshore or Great Lakes trolling anglers the most.  I can’t really see much of an application for inland freshwater fishermen as the high CHIRP frequency does such an amazing job in just about all aspects of freshwater fishing.

It looks like you will not be able to use StructureScan and dual CHIRP at the same time as the dual CHIRP feature will require both transducer ports on the back of the unit.  You may be able to feed the StructureScan into a unit through Ethernet though if you have more than one unit on your boat.  This is due to their new Network Dual Sounder feature on Carbon models.

Mapping Improvements

The biggest change in the Carbon units over the Gen 3 models will be the fact they will now have the ability to create SonarCharts Live.  This is a much needed feature as all the other manufacturers have been able to do this while Insight Genesis still required you to upload sonar logs to the cloud before you could get your map.  With Navionics SonarCharts Live you can now view them live on the water with HDS Carbon.  You will require a compatible Navionics card such as Navionics+ or Update and it must have a current Freshest Data subscription with Navionics ($99/year).

These are the main changes Lowrance is offering on HDS Carbon over Gen 3 units for 2017.  The HDS Gen 3 models will still remain in the lineup.  So the question is, is it worth it to upgrade to HDS Carbon?  If you have Gen 3 units on your boat now I feel it’s hard to justify the price difference in price ($300 7”, $400 9”, $500 12”) unless you are an offshore fisherman who will take advantage of dual channel CHIRP. 

If you have an older HDS Gen 2 or Gen 2 Touch then it might worth it for you pay the difference and get the best of the best from Lowrance for 2017.

Thursday, December 22, 2016

HDS5 Ice Fishing Conversion Kit Lowrance PPP18i Soft Case

Don't want to buy a sonar unit or flasher for ice fishing?  Just take the unit you have on your boat off and convert it into an ice fishing kit.  I used the Lowrance PPP-18i to convert my HDS5 fish finder into a ice fishing unit.  I show you how to assemble the Lowrance PPP18i Ice Fishing Kit for use with a HDS5, Elite, or Mark unit.  This kit is complete with everything you need to turn your Lowrance unit into an Ice Machine.

This kit works great with the following Lowrance models, HDS5, Elite 5 (with an adapter cable), Elite 5 HDI, Elite 5 CHIRP, Elite 4 (with an adapter cable), Elite 4 HDI, Elite 4 CHIRP, Hook 4, Hook 7, X-67c (with an adapter cable), Mark 5x (with an adapter cable), Mark 5x Pro (with an adapter cable).  

Even some older Eagle models like the FishMark and FishElite 320, 480, 640 (with an adapter cable) will work with this kit.  

If you have one of the new Elite 5 Ti models the adapter cable you will need is 000-12572-001.  This adapts the 9 pin black to 7 pin blue PTI-WBL transducer included with the kit to your Elite Ti model.