A fish finder works by using the echolocation to show electronic pulses of the fish among sea features such as rocks, corals and other sediments. Moreover, it converts this information into readable visual data that might appear as fully defined and colored graphics rendition in more premium models of fish finders. Such fish finders help the fishermen identify needed clusters of fish and lower their baits in favorable locations and depths.
Table of Contents
- Comparison of 15 Best Fish Finders Under $500 in 2020
- Top 15 Best Fish Finder Under $500 Reviews in 2020
- 1. Humminbird HELIX 5 Fish Finder
- 2. Humminbird 410300-1 Helix 7 Chirp DI GPS Fish Finder
- 3. Garmin Striker 7sv GPS Fishfinder with Transducer
- 4. Garmin GPSMAP 78S Marine GPS Navigator
- 5. Humminbird HELIX 5 Gps Fish Finder Best for Fishing
- 6. Lowrance HOOK2 4X Fish Finder
- 7. Garmin Echo 151dv US and Canada with Transducer
- 8. Lowrance HOOK2 Fish Finder/Depth Finder
- 9. Humminbird PiranhaMax 4.3 DI Fish Finder
- 10. HOOK2 5 Fish Finder with SplitShot Transducer
- 11. Deeper Chirp Smart Sonar
- 12. Lowrance Elite-5 Ti Touch Fishfinder
- 13. Lucky Wireless Fish Finder
- 14. Garmin echoMAP CHIRP 53cv with transducer
- 15. Raymarine Dragonfly-7 Pro Chirp Fish Finder
- How Exactly a Fish Finder Works?
- How to Choose a Best Fish Finder Under $500?
- Factors to Pay Attention to
- Relevant Resources
Comparison of 15 Best Fish Finders Under $500 in 2020
|Image||Product Name||Features||Latest Price|
|Humminbird HELIX 5 Fish Finder||Check Price|
|Humminbird 410300-1 Helix 7 Fish Finder||Check Price|
|Garmin Striker 7sv||Check Price|
|Garmin GPSMAP 78S Marine GPS Navigator||Check Price|
|Humminbird HELIX 5 Fish Finder||Check Price|
|Lowrance HOOK2 4X Fish Finder||Check Price|
|Garmin Echo 151dv||Check Price|
|Lowrance HOOK2 Fish Finder/Depth Finder||Check Price|
|Humminbird PIRANHAMAX 4.3 DI Fish Finder||Check Price|
|HOOK2 5 Fish Finder||Check Price|
|Deeper Chirp Smart Sonar Fish Finder||Check Price|
|Lowrance Elite-5 Ti Fishfinder||Check Price|
|Lucky Wireless Fish Finder||Check Price|
|Garmin echoMAP CHIRP 53cv||Check Price|
|Raymarine Dragonfly Pro Chirp Fish Finder||Check Price|
Top 15 Best Fish Finder Under $500 Reviews in 2020
1. Humminbird HELIX 5 Fish Finder
It is fitted with dual GPS and GLONASS satellite receiver thus you can be sure of continuous and accurate signal that will provide you with exact fish positioning and other crucial data such as water depth, large rock formations and nearby ports.
2. Humminbird 410300-1 Helix 7 Chirp DI GPS Fish Finder
A very compact and portable fish finder that is made with Chirp technology and easy mapping programs plus the TFT color display ensures easy reading even in the sunlight.
With this device, you can share your position, route and other data with other users through a wireless connection. Furthermore, this model comes with a 3-axis tilt compensated compass that will ensure accurate positioning.
3. Garmin Striker 7sv GPS Fishfinder with Transducer
Garmin Striker 7sv with Transducer comes with a medium sized color display that can be easily read in the sunlight plus this device has a long life battery that has been reported to work for at least 15 hours before needing a recharge.
Furthermore, this model of Garmin fish finder comes with a 3-axis compass and a barometric altimeter. It works great with 2 polaroid AA batteries or the rechargeable NiMH batteries.
This Garmin GPSMAP 78S model of fishfinder comes with large and easy to read screen plus it is fitted with a durable transducer that has an accurate signal that will provide you with exact fish location. Another amazon choice best fish finder under $500.
Garmin GPSMAP have Worldwide shaded relief basemap; microSD card slot for optional mapping. Also, Built-in 3-axis electronic compass; Barometric altimeter With 1.7MB built-in memory.
5. Humminbird HELIX 5 Gps Fish Finder Best for Fishing
Power Output RMS : 500 Watts. Power Draw : 615 mA, Micro SD card slot for optional maps or for saving waypoints and a barometric altimeter as well as 2 polaroid AA batteries.
6. Lowrance HOOK2 4X Fish Finder
With built-in mapping, the HOOK2 4X is a detailed device. Often nominated as the best GPS finder under 500, it features a detailed map showing depth changes and taking you to your favorite fishing spot.
In my experience, once you get to know your waters, you will navigate to the places which were most rewarding to you. One way of finding these places is by depth measurement.
7. Garmin Echo 151dv US and Canada with Transducer
This Garmin fish finder can be easily tilted and swivelled as needed plus it has a quick release mechanism. Moreover, the packaging box comes with clear documentation and instruction booklet that address the most frequent questions and errors.
Furthermore, Garmin Echo 151dv has a colorful display with 480*640 resolution screen and it comes with a waypoint map that will enable you to easily mark, navigate and view different locations.
8. Lowrance HOOK2 Fish Finder/Depth Finder
Moreover, this best fish finder has a long life battery that has been reported to work for at least 8 hours before needing a recharge. Furthermore, this model of Lowrance Hook 2 fish finder comes a GPS system too.
9. Humminbird PiranhaMax 4.3 DI Fish Finder
Made with a new 4.3” display, the Fish Finder is already popular. Maybe this is why even others see it as the best fish finder under 500 reviews show. In particular, most users are attracted to its design.
But this practical device even sends audible alerts when it finds fish. Of course, some of these alerts will prove not worthy of stopping your boat. But it does offer a clear view of the waters right underneath the boat.
10. HOOK2 5 Fish Finder with SplitShot Transducer
With inland US lake maps, this GPS device is part of a popular series from the manufacturer. Made with a 5” screen, it can be the best-rated fish finder under 500. Its screen looks impressive with detailed images.
Its features are already known to the fans of the manufacturer. They include built-in mapping. But all of them are automated and the device can be used right out of the box.
11. Deeper Chirp Smart Sonar
You may even use it on rivers as a result. But it shows clear results with depths of up to 330 feet and it streams its images on your smartphone. I know I need it in many of my fishing trips.
12. Lowrance Elite-5 Ti Touch Fishfinder
Lowrance Elite 5 Ti Touch Fish Finder with a GPS system is fitted with a reliable transducer that has a wide bean and has been reported to be really accurate.
Moreover, this Lowrance fishfinder refreshes the image on the display every 15 seconds and will notify you immediately if a new fish location is found.
Furthermore, it comes with an HD data card that you could use to store important information such as your coordinates, preferred fishing locations and waypoints.
13. Lucky Wireless Fish Finder
Looking for the best fish finder under 500 led me to Lucky Wireless’ device. This compact device has 90-degree readings. It measures water depth, water temperature and it shows you the location of the fish.
With the contour of the bottom, you will also know the right depth you need to reach for your newest catch.
14. Garmin echoMAP CHIRP 53cv with transducer
Moreover, it comes with Chirp front and side imaging ensuring that you get a clear and precise picture of what is around and beneath you. This fish finder check positioning every 5 seconds ensuring you stay on route and always have up to date.
15. Raymarine Dragonfly-7 Pro Chirp Fish Finder
Raymarine Dragonfly 7 Pro Chirp Fish Finder is suitable to be used in any weather plus it comes with an HD screen that can be backlit at night for easy reading.
Moreover, it comes with a sturdy and durable mounting that you could use to position the fishfinder in a way that will be comfortable for you.
Plus, this model of fish finder has large internal storage for up to 3000 user waypoints and 15 routes as well as a 3-axis compass and a barometric altimeter.
How Exactly a Fish Finder Works?
A fish finder transmits a sound wave, which has been converted by a transducer from a simple electrical impulse, and once this sound wave hits the fish it bounces back. Latest models of fish finder are capable of displaying size, shape and even composition.
However, the accuracy and level of precision will largely depend on the frequency as well as the pulse that has been transmitted. A best fish finder under $500 will be able to show you what you otherwise would have never seen with your naked eye especially what is located at great depths.
Lately, a reliable and accurate fish finder is an essential piece of equipment for fishermen wanting to have efficient and fun fishing trips. Moreover, a best fish finder will likely come with a navigation system that is also crucial for safe marine voyages regardless of whether it will be a commercial or private trip.
The navigation system is necessary for all marine vessels as it helps the fishing crew stay the path and helps know the exact coordinates of the vessel at any given time. This can be especially useful for fishing vessels that venture far away from the shore.
Furthermore, a good navigation system will enable you to quickly find the shore, port or new fishing destination. Hence, you could say that fish finders with navigation systems have fully replaced the old fishermen’s means of finding one’s way in the sea especially with the help of compasses and large maps.
How to Choose a Best Fish Finder Under $500?
Firstly, look at what transducer the fish finder has as they are the essential part of the fish finder. Transducers are needed to send and receive sound waves that will bounce off fish, rocks and other formation allowing you to see all of this on a display.
Basically, you could say that transducers are like translators because they convert the bounced sonar waves into clear pictures on the display that a fisherman will be able to understand. These transducers can be mounted in a number of ways however the easiest will be the transom mount.
However, such mount will only work for small to medium boats thus if you have a bigger bought then you would need the thru-hull mount at least. Transducers are made with different materials thus you will need to pick the transducer depending on what type of marine vessel you have.
If you go out to sea once in a while only then a transducer with plastic transom mount should be just fine moreover such transducers are compatible with virtually any boat. However, steel hulls, as well as aluminium ones, will need stainless steel mounting.
Factors to Pay Attention to
Transducer mounting is not the only thing you need to be worried as the transducers cone angle is very important too. Basically, the cone angle stands for the total width of the signal beam that will be transmitted into the water from your marine vessel.
Naturally, a wider cone will mean a larger area will be covered plus keep in mind that the deeper the signal reaches the wider the cone gets. Depending on the model of the transducer, the cones can vary in their width however usually they range between 9 and 60 degrees.
Furthermore, some transducers are capable of emitting more than one cone however such models are much more expensive. Therefore, as you can see deciding on what model of the best fish finder under $500 to buy can be difficult especially with so many models on the market ranging from simple ones to full-sized ones that cost at least several hundred dollars.
However, the process of choosing the best fish finder under $500 does not have to be that complicated if you decide what exact features and functions you want to see in your fish finder. Hence, decide on how large you want the screen to be and remember that large screens are much easier to read from a distance.
This can be especially useful with models that show sea and lake beds as a large screen can be used to see any large rocks on the path that could cause potential hazards. Also, the most fish finder will be portable however some upscale models might be too large and heavy to be carried around.
Choosing a best fish finder under $500 transducer can be confusing especially if you have not done this before however if you even slightly brief yourself with what a good transducer must have then you should not have a problem. Hence, remember that a good transducer must have stable and sturdy mounting plus it must have good beam width as well as frequency because it will determine how well the signal will bounce.
Moreover, remember to never feel upset if you won’t catch any fish during your first fishing trip as some species are extremely fast moving, for example, tuna, thus it can be difficult to detect especially if the boat will be moving at high speed.
Furthermore, keep in mind that there are a total of three transducer types; through-hull, transom-mount and lastly in-hull. Also, there are the down-looking transducers as well as side-looking ones and each mount will be suitable for a specific transducer.
For example, the through-hull transducers are mounted underneath water thus they are considered the most reliable as they never tend to lose the signal because of their submersion under water. On the other hand, the in-hull transducers’ signal might be lost as the signal passes through a fiberglass hull that often degrades the signal’s frequency thus leading the fish finder to have difficulty picking up the fish location.
According to hundreds of professional boaters and fishermen, the best transducer for catching large and quick moving fish such as tuna, swordfish and kingfish is to go for the bigger models of transducers as they feature bigger ceramic parts that emit the needed sonar signal. In other words, the larger this part the stronger the signal is and thus clearer and more accurate picture on the display.