The Best Fishfinder GPS Combo For You: Top Reviews 2017

Fishfinders have been constantly improved, upgraded, and developed to allow a high degree of integration among different systems, such as the GPS. Nowadays, many anglers are on the lookout for the best fishfinder GPS combo that will help make their fishing experience more efficient.

Fishfinder and Navigation Combined

A fishfinder GPS combo incorporates a Global Positioning System (GPS), a satellite-based navigation made up of at least 24 satellites.

Each satellite transmits a signal and orbital parameters that allow devices with GPS to compute the exact location of the satellites, and then measure the distances by the amount of time it takes to receive the signal.

This translates to the receiver being able to determine the user’s location and electronically display it in the fishfinder.

Advantages of A Fishfinder GPS Combo

A fishfinder GPS combo offers anglers several advantages compared to purchasing the two units separately. Combining the two devices in one provides you the essentials for fishing and navigational needs while saving you money and simplifying your life.

You will only need to install one combined device and conveniently view the different data on one device. Having a combined fishfinder and GPS in one unit will also result in having less overall clutter in your boat.

For anglers and fishermen who fish on deep and open waters, a GPS unit is a must-have. Navigation becomes tricky in the middle of the ocean. Even for experiences fishermen and professional anglers, it may be very difficult to get back to your favorite fishing spots without a GPS unit.

When using a fishfinder GPS combo unit, not only will you be able to accurately navigate and locate great fishing spots, but you will also be able to save multiple fishing locations for future use.

With a fishfinder GPS combo, you can always head back to your precise favorite fishing spots. Some fishfinder GPS combo units include additional features that allow gathering of data about water depth and other conditions, in relation to location.

Choosing a Fishfinder GPS Combo

1. Screen Display

Because the screen of a fishfinder GPS combo displays both readings for finding fish and for navigating, of course, you would want a unit that has quality screen display.

It is important to take into consideration the size and the resolution of the screen. Go for the largest and highest resolution screen that would suit your budget. With this, you would be able to locate, navigate, mark, and read fishing spots and information on the screen.

2. Frequency

When scanning and locating objects and fishes underwater, fishfinders operate under a range of frequencies. The range of frequencies is important because it dictates the quantity of sonar waves being sent out and received. The higher the frequency, the more information will be transmitted. 

Although higher frequency provide greater details, it may fail to work in deep waters. On the other hand, lower frequencies carry further, but may yield less details on the screen.

Because of this, many advanced fish finder GPS combo units use multiple frequencies at the same time, which allows them to switch between narrow and more detailed views, and broader and more general views.

3. Power

Higher power output means better and deeper readings. Generally, fishfinders can display readings of up to 400 feet for every 100 watts. The combination of the frequency and the power of a fishfinder GPS combo unit gives a better understanding of the device’s ability.

Choosing the best fishfinder GPS combo that is right for you is a balance among your fishing needs for details, coverage (depth and width), power, and image clarity.

Reviews of the Top 5 Best Fishfinder GPS Combo

**Below, you will find more detailed reviews, but you can also click the links above to see current prices and read customer reviews on Amazon.

#1 - Humminbird-HELIX 5 CHIRP GPS G2 Fish finder

Humminbird takes pride in innovation as the core of everything that they do. Its HELIX series features an incredible industrial design. The HELIX 5 CHIRP GPS 2 has a new interface and operating system, featuring a 5-inch 256 color screen display with backlight.

This screen display feature is great for vivid and clear viewing experience, making it easy read information from the fishfinder GPS combo unit. It also proudly has additional features such as split-screen and zoom in/out, allowing to view the fishfinder and the GPS simultaneously. 

It boasts a precision internal GPS Chartplotting with a built-in UniMap cartography and a microSD card slot. This is a great feature that allows saving of marked spots and waypoints, especially when you want to go back to your favorite fishing locations.

The Humminbird HELIX 5 also features a CHIRP DualBeam PLUS sonar with 4000 watts peak to peak power output, which allows the sonar to operate faster and means better and deeper readings that can go to a maximum depth of 2500 ft.

  • Screen: 5”, 800H x 480V pixel, 256 color display with backlight
  • Frequency: 83/200 kHz
  • Power: 500 W / 4000 W PTP
  • GPS: GPS Chartplotting with built in UnliMap cartography

What We Like:

  • Very useful microSD card which can save marked waypoints
  • Easy to move between GPS and fishfinder
  • Can combine both GPS and fishfinder on screen, even along with other digital information or readings

What We Don’t Like:

  • Plain display and overly general GPS


#2 - Garmin Echomap Chirp 44Cv with transducer

Garmin is proud to have its Garmin Echomap CHIRP 44cv which includes a transducer for 500-watt CHIRP sonar, and Garmin CHIRP Clearvu, for clearer and more detailed scanning sonar images of what are beneath your boat.

With its 4.3-inch color display with keyboard control, its CHIRP sonar produces amazingly clear target separation and definition.

It also coordinates the timing of the bounced back sonar waves with the boat’s position, and then saves the information for future playback. These saved information can even be shared among several devices.

Garmin Echomap CHIRP 44cv proudly features an internal 5 Hz GPS that updates position and heading 5 times per second, making sure that you have a precise reading of your location!

It is also preloaded with charts that include the coastal U.S., and includes high-definition depth contours, IALA nav symbols and fishing charts, and tidal and current stations.

  • Screen: 4.3” color display with keypad control
  • Frequency: high frequency
  • Power: --
  • GPS: 5 Hz GPS -- updates 5x per second

What We Like:

  • Cords plug directly into the mount -- quick to install and remove from power and mount
  • Can save waypoints for future use

What We Don’t Like:

  • Relatively smaller screen


#3 - Simrad GO7 XSE Chartplotter/Fishfinder

Maximize your fishing adventures with the Simrad GO7 XSE Chartplotter. Its screen is a 7-inch multi-touch display that offers ease of use, because its controls pattern those of tablets and smartphones.

Tap to select, pinch to zoom in and out, and tap and drag to move across. Its homescreen can be personalized, such that shortcuts can be made for most frequently used features, making different functions easily and more accessible.

It also features a split-screen view, allowing you to view simultaneously, information of both the fishfinder and GPS. It also has a built-in sonar that allows real-time depth tracking, which offers a picture-like view of the bottom beneath your boat.

In addition, it has a forward-looking sonar technology and a side scan sonar imaging, which provides a holistic image of what are beneath and around the boat. These are very useful, especially when navigating through unfamiliar waters.

Simrad GO7 XSE proudly features a built-in 10 Hz GPS receiver, which updates your position ten times each second. With this, your movement is tracked accurately, without lags, even for fast-moving boats.

The waypoint management feature also allows marking waypoints. This would be very helpful in easily setting and recording destinations.

In addition to all these amazing features, Simrad GO7 XSE also has a built-in Wi-Fi feature that provides direct access to GoFree cloud services, and a bluetooth features that allows audio integration from connected smartphones, MP3 players, and more.

  • Screen: 7” widescreen, WVGA Color TFT LCD, 800 x 400 resolution
  • Frequency: medium/high frequency CHIRP sonar and DownScan Imaging™ views
  • Power: --
  • GPS: 10 Hz GPS -- updates 10x per second

What We Like:

  • Easy to use multi-touch interface
  • Down scan and side scan
  • 2D and 3D maps
  • Advantageous built-in Wi-Fi and Bluetooth

What We Don’t Like:

  • Cannot simultaneously use CHIRP sonar and sidescan sonar imaging


#4 - Lowrance HDS-7 GEN3 Insight Fishfinder/Chartplotter

The Lowrance HDS Gen3 goes beyond expectations as it features on its 7” screen, an exclusive new interface that allows full control of functions through either full keypad operation on multi-touch screen, depending on user preference and other conditions.

Also with an enhanced, faster processor and more user-friendly interface features, operating the Lowrance HDS Gen3 becomes much easier. It combines the simultaneous use of the CHIRP sonar technology and StructureScan HD sonar imaging, which produces unparalleled views of the underwater.

These features are great in replicating the underwater, especially when viewing the fish and structures under and around the bottom of the boat.

It also features an internal GPS antenna and a plug-and-play compatibility, with a built-in Insight USA charts for both coastal and inland US waters. These built-in charts and maps are very helpful and great, because you can use the GPS of the Lowrance HDS Gen3 both in open waters and lakes in the US.

The Lowrance HDS Gen3 boasts additional features such as the Lowrance Smart Steer which allows easy switching from outboard pilot steering to electric steer trolling-motor, and a Go Free wireless, which is very useful when on the water to download and upload maps, new softwares, and other features.

  • Screen: 7”, with touchscreen or keypad options
  • Frequency: --
  • Power: --
  • GPS: internal GPS antenna and a plug-and-play compatibility

What We Like:

  • Built-in Insight USA charts for both coastal and inland US waters
  • Keypad and touch screen option, great for any on-the-water conditions
  • Enhanced menu access
  • Can simultaneously use the CHIRP sonar and the StructureScan HD to get the best possible view of the fish and structure beneath aand around the boat

What We Don’t Like:

  • Requires a transducer for built-in CHIRP, StructureScan & DownScan imaging


#5 - Lowrance Elite-5 HDI Combo

This fishfinder features a Lowrance-exclusive, high-resolution, 5-inch color display, which is great for viewing clearer and more detailed information on the screen. With its new page selector menu, you could quickly and easily access all features using just one-thumb operation.

The Lowrance Elite 5 HDI also combines Hybrid Dual Imaging™ and Broadband Sounder plus exclusive DownScan Imaging™, to provide the best possible view beneath and around the boat.

The Lowrance ELite 5 HDI has a highly-accurate, built-in GPS antenna with a detailed background map and optional chart support. Its Insight Genesis™ also allows creation of free customized maps.

It also proudly features like the TrackBack™ and the multi-window display. The TrackBack™ is great for reviewing saved locations and spots, to determine locations with a waypoint.

This feature would be great to avoid getting lost in trying to go back to your favorite fishing spots. The multi-window display includes a three-panel view with chart, DownScan Imaging and Broadband Sounder; this allows you to quickly and conveniently choose from page layouts.

  • Screen: 5” 480x480 pixel SolarMax 256 color LCD
  • Frequency: 50/200 455/800 kHz
  • Power: 300 W
  • GPS: GPS antenna with a detailed background map and optional chart support

What We Like:

  • Easy to install
  • Multi-window display
  • Can create customized maps based on own survey data
  • Built-in memory allows for up to around 3,000 waypoints

What We Don’t Like:

  • GPS reading of current position in very small font size

The Verdict

With the advancement of technology nowadays, fishfinders have been constantly upgraded and modernized with amazingly helpful features. Among the reviewed top fishfinder GPS combos, we believe that the Simrad GO7 XSE Chartplotter is currently the best in the market.

Its 7-inch multi-touch display is very easy and convenient to use because of its intuitive and familiar controls and personalized homescreen. It also has a split-screen view, which is great in simultaneously viewing information from both fishfinder and GPS.

The 2D and 3D maps and the built-in different sonars also allow real-time depth tracking and provides a holistic view of what are underwater.

With Simrad GO7 XSE, navigation becomes more precise because it updates position ten times per second. You can also mark and record waypoints, which would be very helpful in navigating back more confidently to favorite spots in the water.

If you find this post helpful, we would greatly appreciate if you share this post and also share your thoughts, experiences, and personal reviews on the comment section below.

John Morris
 

Hi, I’m John Morris. I’m an avid outdoorsman and fisherman, blessed with an awesome wife and 2 kids. Fishing is not my passion, it is my lifestyle. I fished before I knew how to walk! I’m obsessed with all things related to fishing, even the fishy smell. I’m always willing to extend a hand to novice anglers looking for fishing tips and tricks thus I created this blog. This blog is a collection of my experiences, knowledge, and also research from other blogs.

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