What do Sport and Commercial fisherman have in common, they rely on fish finders to help locate fish, and these locators need to be reliable, easy to use, and have accurate GPS. Now most of us fishermen are out fishing because we love the sport, but that does not mean we should not take advantage of the same technology to aid us in locating fish.

So, with so many fish finders on the market what is the right one for the body of water we fish (Rivers, Small Inland Lakes, Large Inland Lakes, Great Lakes, or the Ocean)?

I have fished all these bodies of water and I know how important it is to select the right Fish Finder for specific fishing conditions. Here I have listed the Top 8 Fish Finders on the Market for Rivers, Small lakes, Large lakes, the Great lakes, and the Ocean. I did not rank these fish finders in any order, but instead focused on what is best for the above mentioned bodies of water (Fresh and Salt).


Features To Look For

Easy To Use: We do not want to spend hours reading manuals and playing with buttons or the touchscreen

Display/ Image Clarity: Needs to be clear with easy interpretation of structure, contour, bottom, and fish

Sonar Technology: Must have good DownScan, SideScan, and Crystal Clear Images for fish, structures, and contour

GPS Capability: Needs to be accurate and provide markers/tracking capability

Price: Needs to be best price for the level of technology (features, functionality, sonar, clarity, ease of use, etc..)

*Note, The term CHIRP stands for Compressed High-Intensity Radar Pulse and is a frequency-modulated sound (sonar) pulse. Instead of transmitting a distinct pulse beneath the boat, CHIRP Technology modifies the pulse so that a range of frequencies are transmitted by the transducer.

Lowrance HDS-9 LIVE

9″ Fish Finder No Transducer Model is compatible with StructureScan 3D and Active Imaging Sonar. Smartphone integration

This Fish Finder is for the Great lakes and Ocean and may be the most advanced Finder out there. It has Smartphone integration and preloaded C-MAP US Enhanced mapping.

This unit comes with two transducers that can be mounted anywhere on the boat, giving you two Sonar Views at the same time. What a way to cover more water and locate fish faster.

View CHIRP Sonar with StructureScan 3D or StructureScan HD to get the best possible view of fish, structure, and contour. The dual core Processor provides more speed and power for faster screen images. The Color Sonar gives color quality another meaning for fish finders and gives picture perfect image results of SideScan, DownScan, TotalScan & StructureScan HD/3D quality.

Switching between sonar frequencies for depths up to 1,000’ is as easy as touching the screen or bottoms.

– MOST ADVANCED FISHFINDER TECHNOLOGY: Simultaneously view CHIRP Sonar with StructureScan 3D or StructureScan HD to get the best possible view of fish and structure,
– DUAL-CORE PROCESSOR: HDS employs a dual-core processor with more than enough speed & power to provide faster redraws & quicker response times
– COLOR SONAR (HD/3D Quality): New dynamic color range for state-of-art imagery. A wider range of color enhances the near-photographic image of SideScan, DownScan, TotalScan, and StructureScan
– INTERNAL GPS ANTENNA: with 10Hz position update rate provides ultra-accurate trails, smoother performance and maximum position accuracy. Supports WAAS/EGNOS/MSAS corrections.
– LIVE NETWORK SONAR: Cover more water and mark fish more clearly from a network of CHIRP sonar transducers. Get sonar views from bow-mounted transducer and the in-hull or transom-mounted transducer.
– Load two microSD cards up to 32GB each for more memory.
7-inch screen that features best-in-class color & brightness. You will get numerous imaging types like DownScan, StructureScan, & CHIRP.
INTERNAL GPS ANTENNA: with 10Hz position update rate provides ultra-accurate trails, smoother performance and maximum position accuracy. Supports WAAS/EGNOS/MSAS corrections (200 routes and 5,000 waypoints)

Garmin Striker 7SV with Transducer

7″ GPS Fishfinder with Chirp Traditional, ClearVu and SideVu Scanning Sonar Transducer and Built in Quickdraw Contours Mapping Software

This may be the best Fish Finder on the Market for all bodies of water. The Garmin Striker Plus 7sv is a premium fish finder, loaded with features, for a great price.

Its large 7” High Resolution screen (800 x 480 Pixels) produces crisp clear viewing of structures, submerged objects, contours, bait fish and game fish. Its simple interface makes it very easy to operate and allows you to view Side Imaging, CHIRP Sonar, and ClearVU at the same time or each one separately with the ease of a button.

Its GPS is second to none with high-sensitivity & high-accurate. The GPS is incredible for aiding in navigating and creating your own fishing maps (up to 2 million acres & 5,000 waypoints)

– WiFi
– CHIRP SideVü scanning sonar
– CHIRP ClearVü scanning sonar
– Screen resolution 800 x 480 Pixels
– Quickdraw Contours mapping (2 Million acres)
– Bright, sunlight-readable 7” display and intuitive user interface
– Garmin CHIRP traditional sonar (2,300’ in freshwater, 1,100’ in saltwater)
7” High Resolution screen (800 x 480 Pixels) produces crisp clear viewing
GPS has high-sensitivity, high-accurate and is helpful for navigating and creating your own maps (2 million acres & 5,000 waypoints)

Deeper PRO+ Smart Sonar

GPS Portable Wireless Wi-Fi Fish Finder for Shore and Ice Fishing

For the fisherman that fishes small to medium sized lakes (shore, canoe, kayak, boat, or ice fishing) and wants the best portable & castable fish finder on the Market, you will want the Deeper Pro GPS.

The PRO+ uses Wi-Fi to connect to your smartphone or tablet, giving very fast data transfer and strong connectivity. It has a casting range of 330ft and scans down to 260ft. The Deeper Pro can be mounted on to your boat easily as well and has Flasher Display with Zoom. See depth, structure, vegetation, bottom contour (hard or soft) and water temperatures.

– Inbuilt GPS
– Data Recording
– Castable Sonar
– Solid Connectivity
– Scans down 260ft, 0.5″ target separation
-Dual Scanning Beam: Wide Beam (90kHz 55°) for broad areas, Narrow Beam (290kHz 15°) for detailed scanning. Transducer 15 scans/sec

Just cast out and reel it in to create detailed maps live on your smartphone or tablet. The Deeper PRO+ can also create bathymetric maps from home.

Remarkably good on Smartphone and Tablet.
Just cast out and reel it in to create detailed maps live on your smartphone screen. The Deeper PRO+ is the only fish finder on the market capable of creating bathymetric maps from the shore.

Lowrance Elite-12 Ti2

12-inch Fish Finder Active Imaging 3-in-1Transducer, Wireless Networking, Real-Time Map Creation US/CAN Navionics+ Mapping Card

This is another great fish finder for Large lakes, Great Lakes, Lake of the Woods, and the Ocean. This unit comes with WiFI & BlueTooth and allows you to update maps and share data with other Lowrance users. There is a MicroSD card slot for expanding memory and creating more waypoints, hot fishing spots, and custom mapping. The High Resolution 12-inch SolarMAX display gives clear crisp images identifying bait fish, game fish, structure, contour, and bottom detail. For viewing choose from CHIRP, DownImaging, SideImaging, and much more..

– US / CAN Navionics+ mapping card
– High-resolution, 12-inch SolarMAX Display
– Wireless Networking; share sonar, mapping, waypoints and route data between Elite Ti2
– GENESIS LIVE: Update the mapping of your favorite fishing spot with 0.5’ contours (real time with C-MAP Genesis Live)
– SMART TARGET VIEW: Fish are easier to see on DownScan Imaging by combining clear CHIRP sonar fish targets with high-resolution views of bottom detail, structure and bait fish.
ENHANCED DISPLAY TECHNOLOGY: High-resolution, 12-inch SolarMAX display that makes it easier to identify bait fish, game fish, contours, and structure with new, enhanced screen clarity and target separation.
This GPS is very accurate with high sensitivity and helpful for navigating and creating your own maps (up to 2 million acres). You can mark fishing spots, boat speed, waypoints (5,000), track your travel path, and create your own HD Quickdraw Contours maps (up to 2 million acres).

The Sonar and GPS views can be loaded on the screen at the same time.

Garmin Striker Plus 4 with Dual-beam

Striker Plus 4 with Dual-Beam Transducer

This unit works great for all bodies of water and is very affordable. It’s a bit small with a 3.5” screen, but comes with a big punch. You get CHIRP, ClearVu Imaging for DownScanning (830′ in saltwater and 1,750′ in freshwater), and a clear defined fish symbol for identifying your fish.

The Garmin Striker Plus 4 fish finder has Traditional Sonar, CHIRP, DownScan, and an optional transducer for ice fishing. It advanced signal processing greatly reduces sonar noise from other fishermen. Multiple imaging types can be loaded and viewed at the same time.

– GPS, mark waypoints, create routes and view boat’s speed
– Garmin quickdraw contours mapping software, create and store maps with 1’ contours (2 million acres)
– Garmin CHIRP Sonar Clarity Technology for a higher level of clarity and detail
– Bright, Sunlight-readable 4.3” display and intuitive user interface. Display Resolution: 272 X 480 pixels
– Dual-beam transducer with Garmin Chirp traditional sonar (crystal-clear images and remarkable target separation). Bottom contours are more visible even at higher speeds

High-Resolution Solarmax 4.3″ display (Display Resolution 272 X 480 pixels). Crisp and clear views of fish, structure, and contours

The GPS can mark hot fishing spots, boat speed, waypoints (up to 5,000), track your travel path, and create HD fishing maps (up to 2 million acres). Both GPS and Sonar screens can be viewed at the same time.

Garmin ECHOMAP UHD 93sv

9” Keyed-Assist Touchscreen Chartplotter with U.S. LakeVü g3 and GT54UHD-TM transducer

If you want the best fish finder for big water (Fresh or Salt Water), then you have found it!

The Garmin ECHOMAP has a Sunlight-readable 9” touchscreen with keyed assist. The GT54 transducer has Ultra High-Definition ClearVu, Ultra High-Definition SideVü, preloaded LakeVu G3 (inland maps with integrated Navionics data, 17, 000 lakes up to 1’ contours), and the CHIRP traditional sonar. If that’s not enough, you can share sonar data with nearby fisherman using the ECHOMAP Plus, UHD, and Ultra models.

– Garmin high wide CHIRP traditional sonar
– Ultra High-Definition SideVü scanning sonars
– GT54 transducer for ultra High-Definition clearer
– Bright, Sunlight-readable 9” LCD touchscreen with keyed assist
– Supports Panoptix all-seeing sonar, including Panoptix live Scope sonar
– Sonar sharing capabilities with other ECHOMAP Plus, ECHOMAP UHD and ECHOMAP Ultra units-Preloaded LakeVü G3 inland maps with integrated Navionics data (17, 000 lakes with up to 1’ contours)
High-Resolution Solarmax 4.3″ display. You will get excellent crisp and clear views of fish, structure, and contours
GPS has very high sensitivity and accuracy and a plus for navigating and creating your own maps. You can mark hot fishing spots, boat speed, waypoints (5,000), track your travel path, and create your own HD Quickdraw Contours maps (up to 2 million acres).

The Sonar and GPS views can be loaded on the screen at the same time.

HummingbirdHelix 7 fish finder

Hummingbird 410950-1 HELIX 7 CHIRP MSI (MEGA Side Imaging) GPS G3 Fish Finder

This fish Finder is great for small to larger lakes and gives incredible crystal clear viewing down to 125 ft. The Hummingbird Helix 7 has exceptional Down Imaging, Side Imaging, and Dual Spectrum CHIRP Sonar. It comes in a 7-Inch screen with 800H x 480V resolution color TFT display.

Easily identifies structures and contours.

With two display modes, you can easily identify structures & contours, add/remove detail, account for water depth-temperature-turbulence, and even watch your lure presentation

– Low Q CHIRP transducer
– Easily identifies structures & contours
– Mega Side Imaging, crystal-clear viewing 125ft on either side of your boat
– Mega Down Imaging, unprecedented underwater clarity with coverage down to 125ft
– Dual Spectrum CHIRP, wide mode for maximum coverage and narrow mode for maximum detail

Includes; charts of more than 10, 000 lakes and coastal coverage for the U. S. Creates real time maps with the Auto Chart. Mark structures, depths, contours, bottom hardness and much more with 8 hours of recording.

7-Inch screen with 800H x 480V resolution color TFT display
Creates real time maps with the Auto Chart

iBobber Wireless Fish Finder

ReelSonar Wireless Bluetooth Smart Fish Finder

For the fisherman that fishes small lakes from shore, canoe, kayak, boat, or on the ice you may want to consider the iBobber. The iBobber is a good little fish finder at a very affordably price and it will get the job done. This Fish finder is light, portable, castable, and comes with GPS & Trip Log.

Using your iPhone or Android, fishermen can mark fish, map contours & depth, get water temperatures, and even capture photos to share on social media. This unit has LED beacon, strike & fish alarms, and an anti-glare setting for increased visibility during bright outdoor lighting.

– Fish & strike alarms
– Structure contour mapping
– LED beacon and 10 hr rechargeable battery
– Depth-tagged fish icons color coded by size
– Accurate sonar readings down to a depth of 135′
– GPS spot tagging with interactive map and Trip Log,
– Lunar calendar and weather (temp, rain, wind, barometer)
– Syncs with iOS (Apple) 10.0 and later operating systems and Android 4.3 or later (that use Bluetooth Smart 4.0), Compatible with Goggle Watch or iWatch
Remarkably good (varies with the technology of your Smartphone media and resolution)
GPS spot tagging with interactive map