How To Use Elite-4 Series Fish Finders

Learn how to use and interpret the blobs and squiggles on your Lowrance Elite-4 Series fish finders in this video.

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Gene: Hi guys. This is Gene Jensen with BassResource.com. About three months ago, somebody on my YouTube channel asked if I would do a video on how to read some of the less expensive fish finders that you find on the market, and I'm really not as confident as I wish I was on how to teach it. So, I called a good friend of mine by the name of Keith Bassett, and he's sitting right over here. I forgot my tripod today, so let's get some good light. Keith's going to show us how to read some of these less expensive Lowrances. He goes around the state and teach classes on how to read them and how to read all the different sizes and all the different models that Lowrance has. I'm going to turn the time over to him and we'll see what happens from there.

   Keith: All right. Thank you, Gene. Like he said, there's a request to discuss how to read one of the lesser expensive depth finders. It's a lot similar to the ones that are on the higher end market, but what we're going to look at is different things from identifying what a fish is on your screen to identifying a hard structure, such as rocks or stumps and even some brush piles.

   Today, I brought with me two of the Elite-4 Series from Lowrance. I've got a DSI model, which is your DownScan Imaging and then I have the regular Elite-4, which shows your traditional sonar.

   All right. If we want to look at our traditional sonar here first, which is in color. Everybody remembers the old Chronograph ones that we had. Now, we've got them in color. If you look here, you see all these arches right here and up on the screen from the 20 foot down, those arches are the fish, and that's kind of what you're looking for when you are watching your finder, trying to see where the fish are holding it. You see they're holding on top of this drop-off right here, right on the side and right on the top. What this drop-off is, is you can see how the color shows that you have a hard bottom, and it looks like there's probably going to be some rocks with some brush right in between the two rock piles. That's what attracting the fish to that particular area.

   All right, right here is we came on across. We see that we have fish holding on both sides of these two stumps or trees. On the traditional sonar, it's a little harder to be able to differentiate between a stump and a tree, but when we move to the DSI version, we'll be able to see those a lot clearer. As we're coming across here, we see that we've got a drop-off with some brush piles sitting right on the edge of the drop-off, and then we got fish hanging on both sides of it. Now, the way you tell this brush pile is by the lighter colors. You see, you got the brown underneath and then the green and stuff was on top. That shows that you've got a brush pile there. You want to look for their different colorations to tell you whether you have a soft or a hard bottom.

We're going to move over now to the Elite-4 DSI. DSI stands for Down Scanning Image, and you've heard all the rage about the LSS Structure Scan box from Lowrance that goes with the HDS models. Well, they decided to take part of that technology and put it into one of their lesser expensive models and that's where we're going to get the Down Scanning Imaging from. Your transducer gives you these pictures that you see here, and it's kind of like a 3D picture.

   As you see, you're going down like you've come across something and on traditional sonar, this stick up here is going to look like a green blob or a tannish color blob. Well, now you see that it is actually a stick with some branches coming off of it.

   We're going to come on down and we're going down the lake and we're looking at stuff, and we see that we've got a tree and on top of that tree is some bait fish. You see this as clear as can be now with the Down Scanning Imaging where on your traditional sonar, you would have seen the green blob with another blob coming up above it like a cone. Your Down Scanning Image gives you the benefit of being able to see what you have on the bottom more clearly versus your traditional sonar and what it was showing. As you're going down now, you see more stuff on the bottom and you can identify a rock pile. You don't have to try to differentiate between color palettes to see whether it's a hard or soft bottom; it's already showing you that it's a hard rock on the bottom with a little stick coming up off of it like a log that's gotten jammed in there.

   Another thing that you can see real good is a big blob of bait fish. On the traditional sonar, you're going to see that as just a big colored blob on your screen, and here on your DSI you see that there's a separation between the bait fish ball and the bottom of the lake.

   The operation between the Elite-4s DSI and the regular traditional sonar is very similar. They both have GPS mapping capabilities. They both have split screen capabilities to where you can have your map and your sonar on the page at the same time. You can also pull up just a map screen if that's all you want. If you're running off the compass, you can just pull up your compass there and you can follow your compass trail.

   One great thing about this Elite series is they're very simple to use. It doesn't take a whole lot to figure out how to navigate between your pages. You've got a little page button on here, and then you just got to follow the screen to see the arrow to show you what page that you're going to look at. If I want to split screen between my sonar and my map, it tells me to push the down button. I push the down button, and I've got my map and my sonar up there. If I want to just look at a map of where I'm at, I pull up my map. If I want to zoom into an area, all I got to do is keep zooming in with my plus button and I can go all the way in and I can get the contours of the lake on here.

   You go into your menu settings. You can do just like your bigger units. You can set up routes and trails and follow yourself around of where you've been and where you want to go. They're very simple to use. Go out and buy one. Read the owner's manual. It will tell you everything you need to know. If you have questions, don't hesitate to contact one of your local Lowrance Pro staff.

   That's all I've got today on your Elite-4s from Lowrance. Thank you for listening and tune in to more of Gene's videos.


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