Tips & Tricks

Electronics Free Agent? Crews Explains Why He Uses Several Brands – Wired2Fish

As soon as upon a time, anglers went on the water and caught bass with out the help of electronics. I do know, the way in which the bass-fishing world is now, that assertion seems like some legendary fairy story a few land far, distant. Actually, it appears about as more likely to be true as a speaking donkey and a giant inexperienced monster with hyacinth-shaped ears.

However there was a time when that was, the truth is, true. Then paper graphs with literal printouts got here alongside and flashers that marked depth and something that got here straight between the beam and the underside. Then 2D sonar was chargeable for a giant leap ahead. In any case that, it appeared like the entire bass fishing world exploded with the appearance of know-how that would clearly draw footage of what had simply handed underneath and to the facet of the boat.

Shortly thereafter, the bass fishing world was flipped end-over-end once more when dwell photos began being relayed. Not had been we taking a look at the place one thing simply was.

Now, we may see the place it’s.

That is the place we at present are. Even these are simply the developments in sonar applied sciences. This doesn’t bear in mind mapping, GPS, person interfaces and every part else that goes right into a marine digital as of late.

With so many technological developments to the game of bass fishing, an arms race has begun the place a handful of outstanding firms spend numerous man hours and funds on analysis and improvement to return out with the subsequent huge factor, in addition to sustain with the merchandise and developments of their competitors.

There now appears to be a development occurring with plenty of the top-tier anglers within the skilled bass fishing world, the place they use slightly one thing from a number of completely different firms to create a dream arrange on the subject of electronics. Basically, they’re making a command central on the console of their boat and one other on the entrance deck.

Elite Collection professional John Crews is one such angler who has deserted the thought of operating one firm’s items solely and moved to a conglomerate of a number of.

“Expertise is evolving so rapidly that it’s a matter of time earlier than all of them get good at every part,” mentioned Crews. “However within the race for the perfect know-how, sure manufacturers spend extra time and analysis on sure issues they usually get higher at it.”

Crews fishes the Bassmaster Elite Collection, competing almost a dozen instances a yr for a prime prize of $100,000 or extra. Having the best possible tools accessible is important in his thoughts and it helps him rise above the competitors. His mind-set clearly paid off in his current win on the St. Johns River, the place he used his distinctive electronics setup to catch fish each shallow and deep and safe his second Elite Collection victory.

“Electronics are all nonetheless evolving for certain,” mentioned Crews. “That’s why to me, having three completely different choices, I’ve a chance, in my view, to make use of the perfect of every.”

Crews’ arrange features a Humminbird and Lowrance unit on the console, in addition to a Humminbird, Lowrance and Garmin unit on the entrance deck of the boat. Every unit has a selected activity which performs into Crews’ general digital technique.

Let’s begin with the console.

On the console of Crews’ boat, you’ll discover a Lowrance HDS-12 and a Humminbird HELIX 12.

The HELIX 12 has two main functions for Crews: It maps utilizing Humminbird’s LakeMaster technology and it additionally sees what’s beneath and beside the boat utilizing Humminbird’s Aspect Imaging.

“LakeMaster will be extra detailed wherever they’ve mapping of it,” Crews mentioned.

LakeMaster is Humminbird’s proprietary mapping software program, which has very detailed maps of many fisheries. On lakes the place LakeMaster doesn’t have a map, nonetheless, different mapping software program nonetheless proves fairly invaluable.

Having the Lowrance on the console as nicely, Crews is ready to rapidly evaluate maps from a number of sources and discover the perfect topographic traces potential on the go.

“I nonetheless use Navionics on my Lowrance,” mentioned Crews. “Navionics is excellent. What most individuals don’t know is that plenty of Navionics mapping is completed by way of person enter. Customers add sonar logs to Navionics they usually replace it periodically based mostly on person enter. I feel that’s each cool and tremendous useful.”

Along with mapping, Crews makes use of the Humminbird to scan for canopy, bait and bass alongside the boat whereas idling.

“Humminbird was the primary with the Aspect Imaging they usually’re nonetheless actually good at it,” Crews mentioned.

Humminbird’s MEGA Side Imaging, in Crews’ opinion, is a superb choice. That being mentioned, he stresses that different merchandise are actually good as nicely.

“Lowrance is actually good,” Crews mentioned. “And with Garmin’s new transducer that just lately got here out, their stuff appears to be like superior, too.”

So if Crews is utilizing Humminbird’s mapping and Aspect Imaging on the console, what’s the aim for having a Lowrance there as nicely?

“Lowrance’s person interface is strong and it has nice mapping and waypoint administration.”

Crews prefers to mark, retailer and handle his waypoints utilizing his Lowrance unit. He makes use of the Humminbird with Aspect Imaging to scan the underside however when he sees one thing he’s concerned about marking, he’ll truly mark the waypoint on his Lowrance unit. To have the ability to mark issues off to the facet of the boat like this, Crews is concurrently operating Lowrance’s Aspect Scan know-how on his HDS-12.

fish finder electronics on bow of bass fishing boat

Shifting to the entrance deck of the boat, you’ll see that Crews truly runs three items right here now: a Humminbird HELIX 10, a Lowrance HDS-12 and a Garmin ECHOMAP Ultra 102sv.

The Lowrance is, once more, used primarily by Crews for waypoint administration, relaying the identical waypoints to the entrance deck of the boat that he marked on the HDS-12 on the console. He’s additionally in a position to drop waypoints on the Lowrance on the entrance of the boat that can then present up on his dash-mounted HDS-12.

Crews runs a Garmin on the entrance of his boat primarily for his or her forward-facing sonar called LiveScope.

“They had been the unique they usually have extra choices to essentially be capable of dial up your image,” Crews mentioned. “Lowrance caught up, however they got here out with a barely completely different product. There will not be as many changes to make on the Lowrance ActiveTarget and it’s slightly narrower cone angle, but it surely’s an excellent image and you’ll see what you need to see. It’s virtually like down imagining however in ahead. It’s an excellent product, but it surely’s a barely completely different product from Garmin’s LiveScope.”

LiveScope additionally alleviates most of the points which may in any other case come up from Crews selecting to graph with the Humminbird unit and mark waypoints with the Lowrance. If the waypoints aren’t in precisely the precise place, it’s not a very huge deal anymore.

With LiveScope, you don’t really want waypoints which might be as correct since you’re not attempting to triangulate to discover a piece of canopy anymore based mostly on the waypoint on a map. Now, so long as the waypoint may also help you get the boat near the duvet, you possibly can then merely begin panning round with ahead dealing with sonar and find the piece of canopy rapidly, with out counting on the GPS waypoint to attempt to make an correct solid such as you would have previously.

“I even have Humminbird 360 Imaging and LakeMaster on the bow entrance to have the ability to see the structure of the realm I’m fishing,” Crews mentioned.

Humminbird provides a product referred to as 360 Imaging that provides the angler a broad (360-degree) view of every part that’s across the boat.

“I could also be attempting to fish a laydown on the financial institution and never even know there’s a giant grass patch off to my left,” Crews mentioned.

Given this state of affairs, Crews would haven’t any motive to show his trolling motor to the left, so the probabilities of him unintentionally finding the grass clump together with his forward-facing sonar are slim. However with Humminbird 360 Imaging operating, issues are completely different.

“I look down and checkout 360 Imaging and go, ‘Man, that appears like grass.’”, Crews defined. “Then I’ll flip LiveScope over there and go, ‘Oh, it’s grass. Have a look at that!’”

Crews makes use of his Humminbird 360 Imaging and Garmin LiveScope in tandem, sort of such as you would a ceiling fan mild and a flashlight in the event you had been searching for one thing in your room. The ceiling fan mild would trigger the factor within the nook of the room to catch your eye, however then you definately’d take the flashlight and level it straight at it to get a greater have a look at what’s over there.

professional fisherman john crews holding a bass

For many people, the thought of a “excellent arrange” like this can be a little bit out of attain financially at this time limit. It’s fascinating, nonetheless, to listen to the insights of an expert fisherman break down precisely why he prefers one firm’s know-how to a different. In time, the know-how will develop into extra available and comparable from one firm to a different and competitors ought to, in principle, drive the value down a bit.

In case you are at a spot the place you possibly can afford to rig your boat anyway you need, you will have plenty of choices on the market as of late. Hopefully this perception from Crews will enable you perceive extra about every product.

However bear in mind, the know-how is ever evolving. Simply as quickly as this piece is printed, extra analysis will doubtless be essential to make sure one among these entrance runners haven’t launched a brand new piece of {hardware} or some software program replace that has elevated their sport to an entire new stage.

The arms race continues to be going sturdy. What is going to they consider subsequent?

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