Deeper Sonar Review

Deeper Sonar Review: Fish finder technology has advanced a lot. Besides the traditional hull-mounted consoles found on bass boats, companies such as Deeper offer small, portable fish finders that can be cast from shore or mounted via transom onto your kayak.

You might wonder if these systems are worth the extra cost compared to traditional systems.

We have the answers. Below, we look at each Deeper fish-finding line-up and show just how competent they are.

Deeper Sonar Review

Deeper Sonar Review
Deeper Sonar Review

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Maximum depth:165 feet
Maximum range:165 feet
Transducer beam angle: 40 degrees
Frequency120 kHz
CompatibilityiOS 12.0 and Android 6.0 forward
Battery lifeUp to 6 hours
Time for charging2.5 hours

Deeper’s Start is a great place to start for anglers looking for a castable fishfinder. The Start will quickly become an asset that you can rely on, no matter if you fish the banks of your local lake looking for crappie and bass or throw double-rigs out from a pier to catch blues or specks.

The Start, like all Deeper’s sonar system, can be paired with your tablet or smartphone. It’s compatible both with iOS and Android. It runs on a lithium polymer lithium battery that can last up to 6 hours depending on how you use it.

The Start’s maximum range depends on the antenna of your device. The better the antenna, the greater the operating distance. Although you can get up to 6 hours of battery life in theory, most users will see a little less.

Even novice users can read the screen in “simple” mode.

What does the Start do?

It’s quite a lot!

It will not only give you the essential information such as temperature and water depth, but it will also show you the contour of the bottom and vegetation. Icons denoting the three sizes of fish and their relative depths are also included.

This is crucial information for anglers, as it helps to understand where cover and structure can be found.

The screen used by the Deeper app is easy to read and uncluttered. It’s ideal for anglers who are just looking for a better understanding of structure, cover and fish location, particularly in its “simple” setting.

The “detailed” mode will give you more information about the bottom and depths of each fish.

The Start is a significant step forward for anglers who cannot rely on traditional fish finders.

However, Deeper has not revealed an important technical spec that we would like to know: target seperation. This is important, particularly as it affects fish finding performance.

For example, a low target separation can make it more likely that several small fish are close together to register as large fish to the sonar. This is definitely an issue for Start. My guess is that the target separation is low, which allows a few minnows register as real fish.

It’s not a deal-breaker for me, especially considering the price.

You should also note that the Start’s App allows you to track places and make notes. This makes it possible to mark hot spots, record which lures were successful, and keep track of what techniques are working.

This is a great feature that can really tilt the odds in your favour.

You’ll love the Start!

Pros

  • It is simple to use
  • The Start interface is simple to understand and read thanks to its simplicity.
  • You get the best tech for a very low price
  • Excellent battery life and fast recharging
  • Very good tech for finding fish

Cons

  • Poor target separation can lead to inaccuracies in fish finding.
  • The maximum range can be significantly shorter than 165 feet

Deeper Pro+ and Pro+ Review

Deeper PRO Smart Sonar Castable and Portable Smart Sonar WiFi Fish Finder for Kayaks and Boats on Shore Ice Fishing Fish Finder

 

Maximum depth:265 feet
Maximum range:325 feet
Transducer beam angle:Between 15 and 55 Degrees
Frequency90 kHz and 295 kHz
Separation of the target:1
CompatibilityiOS 12.0 and Android 6.0 forward
Battery lifeUp to 6 hours
Time for charging2 hours

Deeper’s Pro+ and Pro+ are better options than the Start for anglers who fish more often. They offer a vastly increased capacity.

You can adjust frequency and sensitivity with an easy-to-use menu. This allows you to choose between a high frequency (290kHz), which provides more information about the water column, or a low frequency (90kHz), that penetrates deeper waters more effectively.

A low frequency pair is combined with a wider beam angle, giving you a better view of the bottom. The higher frequency is ideal for large areas of scanning.

The Pro series features a stronger transducer/transmitter, which allows for greater depth and range. This is not an important selling point for most anglers. Most of us don’t fish deep enough, and those who do will use a standard fish finder and a boat.

However, I don’t think the improvement is a bad thing. It’s not the reason to upgrade.

It’s instead a range of features such as GPS (on Pro+), detailed maps options, fine-grained target seperation, kayak and ice fishing abilities that gives flashers and traditional fishfinders a run for their money.

Bottom line: Most anglers would be well-served by the Pro or Pro+!

Let’s take a closer look at each one.

The Pro+’s GPS system allows for sophisticated bathymetric mapping. You can do this by casting it from shore, or running it from an after-market mount on your kayak or Jon boat. This will quickly reveal every hollow, point and hump in your local lake.

This can make the difference between catching fish and returning empty-handed. It’s also quite impressive in a small, lightweight device that is affordable at this price. This is a great option for serious anglers, as it can be paired with Fish Deeper, an optional app.

Deeper Pro and Pro+ are familiar with their target audience. The interface is easy to use and simple to read and provides data similar to a standard fishfinder. It can distinguish between bait schools and fish with just 1″ of target specification. This gives serious anglers the precision they seek in their electronics.

The Pro and the Pro+ are my favorite ice fishing products!

These units are small and lightweight, so you don’t have to lug around heavy gear. You can just drop them in a hole, and you will be fishing faster than ever with either the traditional flasher screen or the fish finder screen.

The ease of use is what makes the biggest difference for me.

It’s easy to use the Pro and Pro+ to move, drop and read multiple holes in order to choose which one to fish. This is a huge deal, as you will know if this has ever been done.

When a fish is on, there is no transducer or wire to worry about – just fight the fish like the Pro!

There are no worries, no hassles.

I wasn’t expecting to love the Deeper Pro series as much. It’s a game-changer in comparison to traditional fish finders, especially small boat anglers.

Pros

  • It is simple to use
  • The Pro and Pro+ are easy to understand and read because of the simple interface
  • You get the best tech for a very low price
  • Excellent battery life and fast recharging
  • Amazing fishing technology for small boats and ice
  • Excellent target separation

Cons

  • PRO model cannot create depth (contour maps) while trolling with kayaks or boats

Deeper CHIRP Review

Deeper Chirp Smart Sonar Castable and Portable WiFi Fish Finder for Kayaks and Boats and on Shore Ice Fishing Wireless Fishfinder

Maximum depth:325 feet
Maximum range:325 feet
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 6.0 forward
Battery life: Up to 8 hours
Time for charging75 minutes

You can take the Pro+ and make it even better. Add CHIRP sonar tech and a better battery. The result is Deeper CHIRP.

Let’s get down to business.

The CHIRP can reach a depth of 330ft, 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, for which it is named. It 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 point.

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
  • Amazing 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
  • You can create depth (or contour) maps while trolling in a kayak or boat.
  • Manufacturers warranty for 5 years

Cons

  • ?? ??

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 peaks, troughs, peaks and valleys. These oscillations are more concentrated at higher frequencies than those at lower frequencies.

Low frequency –High frequencies penetrate water more effectively than low 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 fewer crests or troughs per second, low frequencies can’t provide the same information as high frequencies.

For a second, think about your mobile phone. This is how 4G works. It can transmit more information, more data per second than 3G. More information is obtained when frequencies are higher.

High frequency –You can provide more detail to allow your fish finder “find” fish and tells you their size as well as location.

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.

Fish Finder Basics: Sonar Pings and CHIRPs

“Please, one ping only.”

The sonar of the Red Oct used “pings”, bursts and pulses that sent sound into water. It struck objects, then returned to its transducer to analyze. 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.

You can see that 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? You can too!

CHIRP sonar is now available on some fish finders. This 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

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:

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.

Last Thoughts

Deeper’s first venture into the fish-finding industry didn’t win me over, but I’m now hooked.

The Deeper line-up is light, portable, user-friendly, and extremely-capable. It’s evident that they deliver on their promises!

Deeper’s products can increase your chances of landing the catch of your dreams, whether you fish from a kayak or a hut in the rough water.

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.