Jump to content
pigeonlake

humminbird gen2 vs gen3

Recommended Posts

Does anyone understand the differences and are they worth the upgrade

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You've got to love the way marketing people spin everything.  I've read everything I can find on the new Humminbird Gen2 Solix (which should also apply to the Gen3 Helix).  Here's what I can decipher from the marketing hype.  The new transducers (including the ones built into Minnkota TMs) when paired with the new fish finders provide higher resolutions down imaging and side imaging returns.  The screen resolution has not improved so you will have to zoom in to see any improved detail.  2D imaging is now CHIRP and the marketing people tell us that is better.  I'm sure CHIRP is better but it's hard to say how much better.  The 2D sonar now has a highly touted "Wide Mode" (42°) for maximum coverage and "Narrow Mode" (25°)  for maximum detail.  My Gen1 Solix has two less touted modes, a wide mode (60°) and a narrow mode (20°).  So the old model is wider and narrower than the new and improved version but the new one is CHIRP (so it must be better?).  

 

My take:  I personally don't like that the "narrow mode" is less narrow now.  Most of the time,  wider is better but there are times when I like as narrow a beam as possible.  I also would like to know how they have implemented down imaging with the Minn Kota built in transducer.  I haven't been able to find anything on the cone angle and shape for the Minn Kota transducer.  Traditional down imaging uses a very wide and very thin beam,  so using it on a trolling motor that is turning could be confusing for some users. 

 

So is it worth the upgrade? It depends on what you are upgrading from.  I'm certainly not going to upgrade my one year old Solix.  If you're like most users and give no consideration to the details of your sonar frequency,  beam shape, and cone angle,  then I doubt you would be able to tell any difference between the newest generation and the previous generation of Humminbird Sonar.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The only diminishing returns that sonar and imaging technologies are running into is apparently people’s willingness to learn and understand how they work.  Today’s sonar/gps units are light years away from the units of even 10 years ago.  

 

Have you noticed a trend that professional bass anglers are having sustained success at younger and younger ages compared to the veterans that have been around for a long time?  If you don’t keep up with the technology the sport of tournament fishing will absolutely pass you by.  Lots of today’s pros spend the vast majority of their “practice time” idling around the lake while staring at their sonar units.  They find the fish that will win them the tournament and then execute when the time comes.  A far cry from what “prefishing” used to mean.

 

If you’re into fishing solely for pleasure and enjoyment purposes, that’s fine, the vast majority of us are.  But there is no doubt that learning how to use modern electronics and keeping up with the trends and learning curves will result in more fish catching.  

 

CHIRP is head and shoulders superior to single frequency sonar waves, do a little research and you’ll learn that the benefits are undeniable.  Is some of it marketing hype?  Of course, that’s how it works in every consumer industry, but in this case the hype is backed by tangible results and legitimate mathematics.  Every major player in the sonar/gps manufacturing business has switched their models over to CHIRP, why do you think that is?  I will never own a non-CHIRP sonar unit again, why invest in outdated and inferior technology?  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yep, I got into my mega si with chirp. Do I love it’s images? Yep. Got it due to the improved images over the gen 1. Thought the improvement of gen 2 over gen 1 was meaningful enough to upgrade. 

 

Am I still on the learning curve? Yep. But I feel as if I am at the point that there are other factors I need to work on (to put more fish in the boat) than getting even more laser sharp on my graphing skills. 

 

You might have a point in terms of diminishing returns on people’s willingness to invest the time to learn.  This might be an indictment ,on the lack of user friendliness of the interfaces to increase the probability of max benefit. This might be, in fact, the next biggest breakthrough.  Apple did it with their phones...maybe someone could break in with a breakthrough GUI so that the people buying it can actually take advantage of all of its value. 

 

Thanks for your encouragement to “do a little research” on CHIRP. However, I do already understand and enjoy it’s benefits in this gen 2 unit.  The OP asked about gen 2 vs gen 3 where CHIRP is standard on both with gen 3 being “dual spectrum”.

 

My diminishing returns comment was made mostly on the extended range of the SI where, for most, the existing range should suffice. Also on the dual spectrum CHIRP....well, I will just wait to see people post the additional detail before I determine its true usefulness even if time is invested to learn to use it.

 

Finally I agree with your statement that the vast majority fish for pleasure and enjoyment.  I perhaps should have said...A very small minority would value the benefits of gen 3, for the rest of us the benefits represented in gen 3 might be approaching diminishing returns. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The “do a little research” wasn’t directed at you necessarily, I know you didn’t say anything bad about CHIRP, the post above yours was writing CHIRP off as marketing hype, which I just don’t personally believe.

 

The new G3 units come with all new transducers with an improved 2D element.  I agree that the improvement is SI and DI images will likely be minimal, the 2D images however, have potential to be greatly approved upon.  I’ll be adding one of the new 2D Highspeed transom Mount transducers to my rig using a Y cable to give me my 2D sonar readings on the Helix 10 MEGA SI at my console.  

 

Here is a great article on CHIRP and the new Low-Q transducers that are available on the G3 helix and G2 Solix units, really helps us regular folk make sense of it.

https://www.technologicalangler.com/chirp-transducers-and-the-q-factor

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I don't think we are anywhere near the point of diminishing returns with this technology.  The 360 Imaging and Live Scan stuff is just getting started.  360 Imaging has help me catch fish that I would not have caught without it and it has so much room for improvement.  If they can get the future 360 Imaging views to be as good as the current side imaging views it will be scary what you will be able to do with it. 

 

CHIRP is important with down imaging and side imaging where you are looking for a high resolution image.  I primarily look to 2D sonar to see an exaggerated view of what is in the water column.   So now that 2 inch fish that appears as a 3ft arch will be higher definition.  I'm all for CHIRP 2D but dropping from 60° to 42° will also mean that you will see a lot fewer fish in 2D.   All things considered I like the new models but they did make some interesting trade offs.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

  • fishing forum

    fishing

    fishing rods

    fishing reels

    fishing forum

    fishing

    bass fish

    fish for bass
    fish

×