The Ultimate Guide: What Is The Best Side Imaging Fish Finder?

Are you on the lookout for the perfect side imaging fish finder? You’re in for a treat! This article will guide you in selecting the ideal fish finder that suits your fishing needs.

We will explore the essential features to consider, highlight the leading brands on the market, and provide expert advice to assist you in making a knowledgeable choice.

Let’s dive in and discover the ultimate side imaging fish finder to elevate your fishing adventures!

The Ultimate Guide: What Is the Best Side Imaging Fish Finder?

What is the Best Side Imaging Fish Finder?

A side imaging fish finder is a useful tool for fishing enthusiasts. It provides a detailed view of underwater features using advanced sonar technology. With numerous options available, choosing the right one can be overwhelming. This article will highlight key features, benefits, and top recommendations to aid in your decision.

Understanding Side Imaging Fish Finders

Before diving into the best options available, it’s important to understand how side imaging fish finders work.

Unlike traditional fish finders that provide a single beam sonar image directly beneath the boat, side imaging fish finders emit a fan-shaped beam to the sides, covering a wider area.

This allows you to scan larger areas and get a more comprehensive view of the underwater environment, including fish, structures, and vegetation.

Benefits of Side Imaging Fish Finders:

Side imaging fish finders offer several advantages over traditional models. Here are a few benefits:

  • Wide Coverage: Side imaging allows you to scan a larger area, increasing your chances of locating fish.
  • Detailed Imaging: The high-resolution images provided by side imaging enable you to identify fish species, structures, and underwater features.
  • Improved Target Separation: Side imaging technology helps distinguish individual fish targets from surrounding clutter, allowing for more accurate target identification.
  • Efficient Time Management: By providing a comprehensive view of the underwater environment, side imaging fish finders help you navigate and fish more efficiently.
  • Easy to Use: Many side imaging fish finders come with user-friendly interfaces and advanced features that make them accessible to both experienced and novice anglers.

Key Features to Consider:

When looking for the best side imaging fish finder, it’s important to consider several key features that can significantly impact your fishing experience. Here are some features to look out for:

Frequency and Power:

The frequency and power of a side imaging fish finder directly affect its performance. Higher frequencies provide finer details and are ideal for shallow waters, while lower frequencies penetrate deeper waters and are suitable for offshore fishing.

The power of the fish finder determines how far the sonar signal can reach and how clear the images will be.


The display of a side imaging fish finder plays a crucial role in providing a clear and detailed view of the underwater environment.

Look for a fish finder with a high-resolution color display that is large enough to easily read the information.

Additionally, consider factors like sunlight readability, backlighting options, and the ability to split the screen for simultaneous viewing of sonar and GPS maps.

GPS and Mapping:

Integrated GPS and mapping features can greatly enhance your fishing experience. A side imaging fish finder with GPS allows you to mark waypoints, create routes, and navigate with ease.

Look for models that offer detailed mapping capabilities and the ability to upload or download maps and waypoints.

Connectivity and Networking:

Some side imaging fish finders offer advanced connectivity options that allow you to pair them with other devices like smartphones or tablets.

This enables you to control the fish finder remotely, view and analyze data on a larger screen, and even share information with other anglers.

Top Recommendations:

Now that you have a good understanding of side imaging fish finders and the key features to consider, let’s explore some top recommendations:

Lowrance HDS-7 LIVE:

The Lowrance HDS-7 LIVE is a feature-rich side imaging fish finder that offers exceptional imaging quality and advanced sonar capabilities.

It features a high-resolution SolarMAX HD multi-touch display, integrated GPS, and powerful networking options.

The device also supports a wide range of optional accessories like radar, autopilot, and more.

Garmin Striker Plus 9sv:

The Garmin Striker Plus 9sv is a budget-friendly option that doesn’t compromise on performance. It comes with a bright 9-inch color display, built-in GPS, and CHIRP sonar technology for crystal-clear imaging.4

The fish finder also supports Quickdraw Contours, allowing you to create custom maps of your favorite fishing spots.

Humminbird Helix 7 SI GPS:

The Humminbird Helix 7 SI GPS offers a powerful combination of side imaging, GPS, and mapping features.

It boasts a 7-inch color display with a high pixel count, providing detailed imaging and easy readability.

The fish finder also supports AutoChart Live, enabling you to create real-time maps of uncharted waters.

Best Side Imaging Fish Finders in 2023 (Top 10 Picks)

Faqs for Best Side Imaging Fish Finder:

1. What factors should I consider when looking for the best side imaging fish finder?

When searching for the best side imaging fish finder, there are a few key factors to consider.

Firstly, you should evaluate the imaging quality and resolution of the device to ensure clear and detailed images of underwater structures.

2. Which side imaging fish finders have a high imaging resolution?

Several side imaging fish finders offer high imaging resolution. One example is the Garmin Striker 7SV, which boasts a high-resolution 800×480 pixel display, providing crisp and clear images.

Additionally, the Humminbird Helix 10 CHIRP Mega SI GPS G2N offers an impressive 1024×600 pixel resolution, delivering excellent image quality.

3. What is the importance of a wide coverage area in a side imaging fish finder?

A wide coverage area is crucial in a side imaging fish finder as it allows for more comprehensive exploration of underwater structures. With a wider coverage area, you can detect and identify fish, bait, and other underwater features that may be missed by devices with narrower coverage.

This enables you to make more informed decisions on where to position your bait or lure, increasing your chances of a successful fishing trip.

4. Are there any side imaging fish finders with user-friendly interfaces?

Yes, there are several side imaging fish finders with user-friendly interfaces. The Lowrance Elite-9 Ti2, for instance, features an intuitive touchscreen interface that is easy to navigate.

It also offers customizable menus and quick access to essential features, enhancing the overall user experience. Similarly, the Raymarine Dragonfly 7 Pro has a simple interface, making it easy for beginners to operate.

5. Which side imaging fish finders are known for their durability and reliability?

Many side imaging fish finders are built to withstand various fishing conditions.

The Humminbird Helix 9 SI GPS, for example, is known for its rugged construction and ability to withstand both freshwater and saltwater environments.

Another reliable option is the Lowrance HDS-12 Live, which is built with durability in mind and is designed to handle the demands of professional anglers.

Final Thoughts

When evaluating side imaging fish finders, it becomes clear that choosing the best one is subjective and depends on individual needs. Factors like display quality, scanning range, and user-friendly interface are important in making a decision. While brand reputation and customer reviews can help, personal preferences and fishing requirements should also be considered. Ultimately, the best fish finder is the one that meets the user’s specific needs and improves their fishing experience with accurate and detailed underwater imaging.

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