Best Fish Finders for Crappie Fishing

Crappie Fishing: The Best Fish Finder 2021

The best crappie fish finder – Anglers who fish for crappie have never had more options for fish finding electronics. From units that can be used on boats to those that can be used from shore, there is a model for everyone.

We can help you if you are looking for a new crappie fishfinder. This guide will help you choose the best crappie fish finder.

Here’s a quick look at the top crappie fish finders:

  • Humminbird HELIX10 G3N –The Best High-End Fish Finder For Crappie Fishing From a Boat
  • Lowrance HOOK2 9
  • Deeper CHIRP –Crappie fishing from shore: Best fish Finder
  • Humminbird PIRANHAMAX4 DI –The Best Crappie Fish Finder for Budget Prices
  • Garmin Striker 4 – Crappie fishing from a kayak is the best way to find fish

Best Fish Finders For Crappie Reviewed

Humminbird HELIX 10 G3N – Best High-End Fish Finder for Boats

Display Size:10.

Resolution:1024 x 600

Frequencies:CHIRP Full Mode (150-220 KHz), Narrow Mod (180-240KHz), Wide Mode (1140-200kHz; soA downar 50/83/200/455/800kHz and 1.2 Mhz)

Side scanning:800 feet (455 kHz), 250 feet (800 kHz) and 400 feet (MEGA). (Up to 800′).

Down ImagingYes, MEGA Imaging+

Maximum Depth:1,200′ (3.500′ with an optional 50kHz transducer).

Transducer Angle20deg. 42deg. 60deg. (2) 86deg. (2) 55deg @ 10dB

Target SeparationNo less than 2.5″

GPS: Yes

Maps Yes

If you are a regular reader, you will know that we love the Humminbird line of fish finders. The Helix 10 is one of our favorite models. This is the ultimate benchmark in high-end performance and packed with game-changing features. A close examination of its capabilities will show why.

The screen on this Humminbird is amazing. Although the 10-inch diagonal may not be the largest on the market Humminbird is an expert in its field. The Helix 10 is easy to read in bright sunlight and offers exceptional resolution. It also has the right level of detail that makes it stand out from its competition.

The Helix 10 has the most powerful sonar system, and its powerful CHIRP technology provides incredible detail. You can switch between sonar options and transducer angles using the three “modes” built in to the Helix 10. This will allow you to find the best frequencies and angles for you. The Helix 10 is able to handle deep or shallow water, no matter where you are.

Side scanning and down imaging are also available, giving you better water coverage. These are both radical improvements over the fish finders from a decade ago and provide an almost unbelievable view of the bottom.

The down imaging Humminbird provides is something I am particularly impressed by. This is an amazing feature, and it’s hard to overlook for slab enthusiasts looking for the best crappie cover.

The Helix 10’s down imaging features are the best available.

The standard fishfinder view is also excellent, since the CHIRP Sonar provides a lot of target separation.

You can navigate with ease and mark hot spots for analysis and location.

The standard fish finder view can be used to locate schooling bait and predators that feed on it.

You’ll need to spend time reading the manual and learning about the capabilities of advanced fish finders. Once you have, you will be rewarded with a highly capable fish finder.

Pros

  • Powerful CHIRP sonar
  • You can choose from a variety of transducer angles
  • Amazing down imaging
  • Amazing side imagery
  • Amazing screen
  • Excellent target separation

Cons

  • ???? ??

Lowrance HOOK2 9

Lowrance HOOK2 9 - 9-inch Fish Finder with SplitShot Transducer and US / Canada Navionics+ Map Card ...

Display Size:9

Resolution:800 x 480

Frequencies:CHIRP and standard sonar

Side scanning:Yes, SideVu

Down ImagingYes, DownVu

Maximum Depth:?? ??

Transducer Angle?? ??

Target Separation?? ??

GPS: Yes

Maps Yes

The high-end Humminbird is not affordable for everyone. However, the Lowrance Hook2 9 is a great alternative.

Does it directly compete with the Helix 10?

Most likely not. Let’s find out why.

The Hook2’s diagonal screen of 9 inches is easy to read and offers lots of color and detail. This is a great screen, and although the Hook2’s Humminbird competitor might be a little better, it’s still very comparable.

Lowrance’s screen looks very, very good.

Electronics are where the high-end distinguishes itself. Lowrance is very specific about details. Even after exhaustive research, we could not find exact frequency, transducer angle or maximum depth information.

This is not necessarily a bad thing. However, it prevents direct comparisons.

The real world performance is excellent, however. Hook2’s Hook2’sCHIRP works well, giving you plenty of detail and allowing for the easy identification of crappie and ball of shad. The traditional fish finder mode has been flawless. It works great and I have no complaints.

To my eyes, sidescanning and down-imaging are much worse than the Helix 10. They don’t have the same level of detail as the Humminbird. It’s obvious that spending more money on the latest technology makes a difference.

You’ll be happier with Hook2 than you were with the Humminbird if you spend time learning about the manual.

Pros

  • Powerful CHIRP sonar
  • Good down imaging
  • Side imaging is a good idea
  • Amazing screen
  • Excellent target separation

Cons

  • Helix 10’s high-tech features are behind it.

Deeper CHIRP: Best Fish Finder for Crappie Fishing From Shore

Deeper Chirp Castable and Portable Fish Finder for Kayaks Boats on Shore Ice Fishing Wireless Fishfinder Smart Sonar Fish Radar Depth Finder in a Limited Edition Box

Maximum depth:330

Maximum range:330

Transducer beam angle: 7, 16 and 47 degrees

Frequency: 100 kHz to 290 kHz and 675 kHz

Separation of the target:. 4″

Compatibility iOS 12.0 and Android 5.0 forward

Battery life Up to 8 hours

Time for charging: 75 minutes

Deeper understands that anglers fishing from shore need to be as knowledgeable as those in boats. From the location of brush piles to the topography at the bottom to finding schools, the CHIRP model is a stunning tool.

Let’s get down to business.

The CHIRP can reach 330 feet in depth, thanks to a stronger transducer than an ultra-low frequency. This can be an advantage in deep lakes, but it is not the main selling point of this system.

It’s actually the CHIRP sonar, which is why it’s called. This sonar runs through the frequency bands to provide greater information than traditional systems. CHIRP is an upgrade that can make fish-finding easier than ever.

This, along with a faster charging and longer lasting battery, makes the Pro+ a worthwhile upgrade to the CHIRP.

The Deeper CHIRP is a fantastic deal at this price.

Bluetooth pairing allows you to adjust the size and quality of the screen, but the images are clear and easy-to-read.

Pros

  • It is simple to use
  • The interface of CHIRP is simple and easy to understand.
  • You get the best tech for a very low price
  • High battery life and fast recharging
  • Amazing fishing technology for small boats and ice
  • Amazing target separation
  • CHIRP sonar has the best reputation in the industry

Cons

  • ?? ??

Humminbird PIRANHAMAX4 DI – Best Crappie Fish Finder for Budgets

Humminbird 410160-1 PIRANHAMAX 4 DI (Down Imaging) Fish Finder, Black

Display Size:4.3″

Resolution:272 X 48

Frequencies: 200/455/455 KHz

Side scanning: No

Down Imaging: Yes, 320.

Maximum Depth: 320 ft (20), 455 kHz; 600 ft (20), 200 kHz

Transducer Angle: 28deg, 16deg and 74deg @ 10dB

Target Separation: 2.5″

GPS: No

Maps: No

A big screen is a problem for kayak anglers. I find anything larger than a smartphone just gets in the way. Humminbird knows this well and has the PIRANHAMAX. While it is not fully-featured, you still get a lot for your money.

This unit’s heart is the excellent XNT9 DI T transducer. It offers dual-frequency sonar at 200 kHz and 455 kHz. It provides superb detail and overall depth, and is paired with the screen of 4.3 inches, which produces sharp images. The DI in the name stands for “down imaging”, which provides more precise images than traditional sonar systems.

Although the technology in the Helix 10 is not as advanced, the Piranhamax screen can make blobs look like stumps.

This is a unique feature that competitors cannot match. If you are looking for a fish finder at a reasonable price, this is arguably the best option.

You can choose between narrow beams to go deeper or wider beams for shallower waters. Most anglers will find that the 600-foot range of bottom-finding sonar is sufficient. You can see the fish you want when you pair electronics with 2.5 inch target specifications.

What’s the problem?

CHIRP, side scanning sonar, big screen, GPS and maps. Even though the PIRANHAMAX is capable, it can’t assist you with waypointing or course charting.

It is still a great option for those who fish with a paddle or are on a budget.

Pros

  • Amazing price
  • Acceptable screen size
  • Excellent depth and variety
  • Dual sonar
  • You get powerful down imaging without any gimmick

Cons

  • No CHIRP
  • There is no side-scanning
  • No GPS
  • There are no maps

Garmin Striker 4: Best Fish Finder for Crappie Fishing From a Kayak

Garmin 010-01550-00 Striker 4 with Transducer, 3.5' GPS Fishfinder with Chirp Traditional TransducerDisplay Size: 3.5″

Resolution: 320 X480

Frequencies: CHIRP 50/77/200 kHz

Side scanning: No

Maximum Depth:1,600′ Freshwater; 750’ Saltwater

Transducer Angle What is the best way to get started?

Separation at Target:What is the best way to get started?

GPS: Yes

Maps No

The standard Striker fishfinder screen is simple to read.

The Striker 4 has a 3.5-inch screen, which is a little smaller than its Humminbird counterpart. Humminbird’s down imaging offers a clearer picture, but there is no contest. What can the Striker do in order to be included on this list?

CHIRP.

The Striker 4’s heart is a powerful CHIRP-capable transmitter, which broadcasts on frequencies between 50 and 200 kHz. This provides excellent depth and range as well as fish identification. While image quality may be sluggish, fish identification isn’t. That’s the beauty of this technology.

Garmin chose not to reveal the transducer that the Striker 4 is paired up with. We can’t give you details like target separation and beam angles. We can tell you that the Striker 4 works great, is simple to use, and offers excellent GPS features such as waypointing and marking. These features are not to be dismissed, and the Garmin may be the best budget fishfinder for you if you’re prepared to sacrifice image quality for the Humminbird.

Pros

  • Amazing price
  • Acceptable screen size
  • Excellent depth and variety
  • CHIRP
  • GPS

Cons

  • There is no side-scanning
  • There are no maps
  • The image quality is poorer than the Humminbirds.

Fish Finder Basics

Frequency Demystified

Sonar is sound. Sonar is beyond human hearing range, but it’s in principle no different to any other noise.

Sound is a wave with crests, troughs, peaks and valleys. These oscillations are more concentrated at higher frequencies than those at lower frequencies.

Low Frequency

Low frequencies penetrate water more effectively than high frequencies. Fish finders equipped with low-frequency transducers are able to “see” through water more effectively, giving them greater depth.

Low frequencies have a weakness in that they provide data. However, with less crests or troughs per second, low frequencies can’t provide the same information as high frequencies.

For a second, think about your mobile phone. It works the same way. 4G can transmit more information, which means that it can store more data per second than 3G. More information is obtained at higher frequencies.

High frequency

High frequencies provide greater detail and allow your fish finder “find” fish, telling you their size and whereabouts.

However, they are unable to penetrate water and can’t give you any information about the bottom, such as structure and cover.

Dual sonar

Dual frequencies are used by most fish finders. They pair a high frequency and a low frequency to offer the best of both. If you see a fishfinder listing two frequencies (e.g. 77/200kHz), it means its transducer broadcasts simultaneously at both 77kHz and 200kHz.

The low frequency signal is used to read the bottom. While the high frequency signals are used to locate the fish.

Sonar Pings and CHIRPs

“Please, one ping only.”

The sonar of the Red Oct used “pings”, which were bursts or pulses that it sent to the water. These noises struck objects in the water and returned to its transducer for analysis. The sonar wasn’t always transmitting sound when it was active.

The majority of fish finders are the same. Dual frequencies are used in pulses. These include short “pings”, like the one in the video. These pulses are transmitted together and provide enough data for the electronics of the fish finder to take a picture on the bottom and any suspended objects in the water column.

However, military technology has come a long way since the Cold War. Modern sonar systems use CHIRP (Compressed High-Intensity Radiated Pulse).

CHIRP sonar uses longer pulses than other systems. It starts at the lowest frequency and moves quickly to the highest frequency. These longer bursts and the wider range of frequencies between the lowest to highest provide more information than standard sonar systems.traditional vs chirp

As you can see there are many more peaks than valleys in the CHIRP signals, each carrying information. CHIRP sonar is used by the military because it’s far more efficient than dual frequency sonar. The good news is that it’s also available to you.

CHIRP sonar is now available on some fish finders. This sonar provides superior imaging, more accuracy, and more detail.

This is not a marketing ploy. It’s real. We believe it’s worth the price.

How to Choose a Fish Finder For Crappie Fishing

We prefer CHIRP sonar system. What else is important?

Target Separation

The fish finder’s ability to distinguish individual fish from each other is measured by their target separation. Smaller numbers mean better performance.

Transducer Beam Angle

This is often a selling point but it is not as important as what marketing leads you believe.

All other things being equal

You can see more below the transducer with wider angles.

The “specified cone” doesn’t actually represent the area that the fish finder detects. It’s more like this:tranducer beam angle

The bottom structure can also have a significant impact on performance for beams with a specific beam width. This problem is more common the wider the beam width.

The transducer beam angle should be wider if you fish in shallower water. You don’t want to have too much. If you fish in deeper waters, you will need a narrower beam angle.

Side Imaging Sonar

It is exactly what you hear. Advanced fish finders have specialized transducers that can transmit and receive from the starboard and port sides. This creates a 2-D image showing the water column from either side.

Some brands have a range as high as 800 feet!

This is a popular choice for fish locating, as it can be extremely useful. These side-facing transducers have a limited depth. Although side imaging sonar will not penetrate the water column as deeply, it is an excellent complement to a traditional transducer.

Down Imaging

The use of down imaging to capture hyper-realistic images can be used to show the structure and cover, turning blobs and smudges in brush piles.

Crappie anglers can make a huge difference if they are able to distinguish a rock or hump in a brush pile. Down imaging is definitely something we seek out.

Maximum Depth

A fish finder should have a good maximum depth rating. This rating should be matched to your actual usage. This is especially important if your preferred water depth is the Great Lakes or saltwater anglers.

Display size and resolution

Larger displays are more easy to read and use but they also cost more.

Sometimes, bigger is not always better.

A fish finder’s resolution is the amount of detail that a screen can display. A small screen with a high resolution resolution can be more easily read than one with a low resolution.

GPS and Maps

These are essential considerations for a fish finder.

GPS and maps offer so many functions, from precise waypointing to honeyhole marking, that it’s almost an automatic choice.

Last Thoughts

You can fish for crappie in a boat, kayak or on the shore. There are many options. We hope you have found the right one.

If so, please leave a comment.

Lewis
Lewis Mark is a vastly experienced fly fisher. His encyclopedic knowledge of fly tying has led to start blog on fishing. He also review Fishing equipment based on his knowledge and experience.