Upgrading my sounders is something that I’ve done to help learn and understand the full extent of what is possible with my fishing. Originally I had a black and white Humminbird on my Hornet Trophy many years ago and then purchased a colour 2D Humminbird, when I bought my Javelin I got myself a Humminbird 797 side imaging unit and began to learn more and more about the water I was fishing, following that I got my hands on a Lowrance HDS 10 but after seeing the HDS touch system, I splurged and bought myself 2 HDS 12s for my boat and transfer one to my kayak whenever I am in that.
I am honestly hoping that the bigger unit will turn a small dot on screen that I am not used to seeing or possibly would miss into something that would stand out like the proverbial and the bigger the unit, the better I reckon.
Do I know what I’m doing with it? Not really but the big units, whether Humminbird or Lowrance or Simrad or whatever it may be offer the ability to see things without squinting and reduces those moments where you look at the screen and go “yep… oh nup… mmmm I don’t know what it is” and on my boat, acts as a nice wind break when sitting at my console.
I’ve taken a tip that Josh had heard about fishing flats too. It had been mentioned that when fishing flats, mark every bite, fish, swirl or bump on the chartplotter and see if a pattern forms from it. My last flats trip, I did just that and surprise surprise, right before my eyes a cluster of marks emerged where the fish seemed to be most active.
With this information, I focussed a bit more, slowed myself down and caught fish in those areas. Whether it was just a change in technique when my confidence was up or whether it was actually more active fish, I’ll never know but it worked.
A great feature of these big units is the ability to have multiple sets of data in front of you at once, without it looking like thumbnail sized images. I can have my chartplotter, 2d, side scan and down scan on screen at about the same size as my 797 would allow me to.
All of this was done on a massive Lowrance HDS 12 that was at my feet. No squinting or bending down to get a better look, just a glance every now and then to feed some more information into my fishing obsessed brain.