|Overall Winner for best gps fishfinder combo under 1000||Winner for Ease of use out of the gps fishfinder combos under 1k we reviewed||Winner for Best maps out of the box for gps combo fishfinders under 1k|
|Dual Spectrum CHIRP, MEGA Down Imaging, MEGA Side Imaging||DownScan sonar (straight down), SideScan sonar (up to 300' to each side), and CHIRP sonar (fish arch) views.||Built-in RealVision 3D Sonar with CHIRP DownVision, CHIRP SideVision and Traditional CHIRP Sonar|
|Amazon Pricing And Reviews||Amazon Pricing and Reviews||Amazon Pricing and Reviews|
We have all been looking at our fishfinder trying to figure out what the hell we’re doing wrong. The fish are there because we can see them on the fish finder and yet nothing is biting! It’s true some days almost nothing will bite but if you have been using a cheaper fishfinder GPS combo there is a good chance you are seeing false positives.
Oddly enough what sets the best fishfinder GPS combos under 1000 apart is their ability to see where the fish are not! When you know you are looking at an accurate picture you will bigger fish more often. For more stories about how anglers use their fishfinder to help get tight lines here is a relevant forum thread even if it’s a little old.
Finding fish is one thing. Being able to get back to the same fish a month later with ease is a whole nother story. The Helix 7 does this as well as any fishfinder we have reviewed. The best part of our overall top pick is it’s not even the most expensive on the list!
We have to start out with the detail in the graphics which is what we all care about. The ability to clearly see the bottom of a lake and to find fish using the side scans really set this fishfinder apart from many of its competitors.
If you are going to be fishing in the United States or Canada you will likely be ready to go out of the box since its includes maps for 21,000 lakes on the sd that comes with this package. Be careful if you shop around because some of the more expensive vendors selling this product sell the same fish finder but without the sd card included in this one.
They call the side scans on this fishfinder “mega side scans” and even though that sounds like marketing lingo I have to say I agree. As you can see from the above picture you will see some truly impressive things you would not see otherwise.
I think even the best fishfinder on the market will miss seeing every fish. but the hummingbird helix 7 will see this boat and millions of others like it. We both know there are big fish hiding all around that boat just waiting to tighten your line!
All in all, if you are looking for the best overall GPS combo under 1000 dollars this will certainly be one of your top considerations. It is my personal favorite for a large variety of fishing I do.
Most of the complaints around this unit have to do with durability issues. The reality is this unit does better than most high-end GPS fishfinders. They are delicate and if you run them into debris they are likely to take damage!
Pros of the Humminbird Helix 7 fishfinder
- “Mega side scans” – That truly is impressive. These are the pictures that will make your friends and family gawk. They also show you where the big fish are.
- Includes maps for 21,000 lakes- Including the sd card should be required in my opinion but buyer beware! Many of the nice fishfinder GPS combos ship without it. This one does!
- Includes transducer and mounting hardware, power cable and gimbal mounting bracket -again this should be standard but it’s not. I have been on the water and experienced a fellow fisherman frustration when he realized he did not have the cable needed to connect his fishfinder to the transducer.
- Easier to set up than many fishfinder GPS combos units.
- Great Value for Cost. One of the best of any gps combo on the market. This same transducer is used on much pricer units.
Cons of the Humminbird helix 7 fishfinder
- Durability could be better – This seems to be true with just about every high-end fish finder
- Warranty work- If you get a defective fishfinder you have to pay for round trip shipping. The good news is this rarely happens because they make a quality combo GPS.
Out of all of the fishfinders we reviewed this was by far the easiest to use. It auto adjust to all situations. If you don’t want to deal with adjustments on your fishfinder this is the perfect one for you!
Don’t be fooled by the simplicity though, this thing is powerful. It has built-in side scan sonar with a massive 300-foot range! It also has an extra-wide Chirp scanner which almost doubles the range of most of the fishfinders on the market.
It also has a great down scanner capable of providing detailed images of structure and fish directly below your boat, 300 feet at 455 kHz 150 ft down at 800 kHz. What is great it this model actually has a history function on the down scanner that allows you to scroll left to continue the image into the past to really learn the area of floor you are looking at! The menus really are simple on this model and you can get a good feel for the camera by checking it out its user manual here.
Pros of the Lowrance hook2 9 inch fishfinder-
- Easiest GPS combo under 1000 to use that has all 3 types of sonar (Chirp, Side and deep)
- Really fun history mode on the deep scan that can give you a better understanding of your favorite fishing hole.
- 4,000 lakes with 1-foot contours pre-loaded and ready to fish with! Has an option to only show productive water to fish in. Very handy and easy to use the feature
- Everything on this fishfinder is automatic. It has some advanced customization features but recommends you don’t change them!
- 9-inch fishfinder for under 1k!
Cons of the Lowrance Hook2 9 inch fishfinder-
- Does not come with a paper owners manual- I know, I am old school here. There is a complete manual digitally stored on the fish finder that you can access through the display and the one I linked to up above. You may want to print out before you go if you will want the paper version!
- Only has data on 3000 maps-This is better than the options on the market. There is an option for all of their maps that comes with one year of free updates you can check out on amazon here
Raymarine Axiom 7 Fish Finder with RealVision 3D and RV 100-Transducer – The best combo GPS fishfinder under a grand that comes with detailed maps out of the box!
With so many of the complaints on GPS units being their terrible charts, we had to review one that came with great out of the box maps. This is that GPS. It comes with a great package from Navionics+ charts with coverage of coastal USA and Canada and over 20,000 inland ponds, rivers and lakes.
If you have been looking for a GPS that comes preinstalled with river coverage you know it’s not easy to find. For all the other river rats out there this is something that is severely missing from most of the GPS combos on the market at any price point.
I have heard many woeful tales of fisherman planning on using their great new GPS combo unit to navigate at night only to find out after they are on the water that the maps are not included with their purchase.
It would not have made the list if it only had great maps. It also comes with its own wifi which allows it to do some really cool things like Dock-to-Dock Autorouting which makes route building safer and easier.
The Raymarine Axiom 7 is actually packed with features we are not used to seeing in fish finders and we really love such as.
- Built-in wifi paired with free Raymarine Apps allow you to view or control your unit from your iOS or Android device
- Quad-core processor delivers blazing-fast performance without any slowdowns
- The “Real Vision” system allows you to adjust the viewing angle. This, in turn, allows you to see an area from any perspective you want which is not always possible without the ability to change the angle.
- Will remember terrain as you fish it and become more detailed as you pass over it
- Can save money and use a smaller screen if you want since many people operate it mainly with their cell phone. I personally wish I could afford the 12 inches but it was out of my budget for a GPS fishfinder.
- Comes with the cabling needed to hook up your transducer (you’re noticing a pattern with the GPS combos that made the list aren’t you?)
What the Raymarine Axiom 7 Fishfinder could have improved on
- The deep scan seems to have a few issues on some of the units.
This unit does not have the transducer!!! If you are wanting a GPS combo that is ready to go out of the box this is NOT it unless you already have a compatible transducer. If you are already plugged into the Garmin ecosystem and you are looking for a combo GPS under a grand this is the unit for you. This is the GPS combo under 1k for those of you that al already plugged into the Garmin System.
Full-network compatibility allows you to add more capabilities to your boat. Garmin Marine Network support allows sharing of sonar, including Panoptix sonar, maps, user data, Garmin radar, and IP cameras among multiple units. Plus, there’s NMEA 2000 and NMEA 0183 support for connectivity including autopilots, digital switching, weather, FUSION-Link, VHF, AIS and other sensors.
There is a wide array of transducers that will work with this Garmin combo GPS but it is important to remember this unit ships with none of them!
Built-in Wi-Fi gives you access to the free all-in-one ActiveCaptain™ app, so you can manage your marine experience from nearly anywhere. It creates a simple yet powerful connection between your compatible mobile device and your Garmin Chartplotter, charts, maps, and the boating community. Wherever you are, you’ll have unlimited access to your cartography, the ability to purchase new maps and charts and access to the Garmin Quickdraw™ Contours Community. Stay connected with smart notifications on your Chartplotter screen. You can also plan a trip or prefish a lake, and ActiveCaptain will automatically sync with your Chartplotter. Even get notifications for software updates, and decide when to download them on your device.
What we like about the Garmin GPSMAP 742xs –
- Great Garmin GPS combo if you already in the Garmin ecosystem of products
- Great community of fishers and cartographers to share waypoints and fishing hotspots with!
- Comes preloaded with high-quality maps
What we don’t love about the Garmin GPSMaps 742xs
- Expensive to buy if it’s your first Garmin GPS combo.
- Limited compatibility with non-Garmin products.
- No Transducer!- This is the only GPS Combo Fishfinder on the list that does not come with a Transducer.