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Lakemaster and Navionics in MN


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Decided to expand my cartographic options this season and invested in Navionics chips for my 2 H'birds (998 & 958).  I've been exclusively a Lakemaster guy for a while now and have often wondered if the Navionics maps available from their website are the real deal.  Well, outing 1 is in the books - a couple of hours last Thursday idling and cranking on Minnetonka (Wayzata Bay) and I do hope the Navionics experience gets better!  I checked out at least 10 obvious structure spots from the sonar charts option and only a few were even remotely close to the actual bottom shape.  More testing to come, of course, but I was wondering if anyone in this forum has has used Navionics in Minnesota and what your experience and opinions are. 

 

I'm still hopeful but it's never fun for a new toy not to work well  ?

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  • Super User

Although I haven't used Navionics in mn I've used it a lot all over Wisconsin. It really depends on the lake you're on. Some are very accurate, some not so much. Sonar charts are great if someone has actually recorded in that specific area. You always have the option to log sonar and upload it to navionics and they can update their map based on that. I run Lowrance units and take advantage of their C-map Genesis program  which is similar, but free. If I'm headed out somewhere new I'll check to see if the C-map map is good or not and if it is I'll download it to use that instead of my Navionics.  

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  • Super User

I've been using Lowrance since 2001.  Back then, they were compatible with Lakemaster.  My old hand held H20c still uses a Lakemaster chip.  However, a number of years ago, Humminbird bought Lakemaster, thus rendering those chips unusable with other formats like Lowrance.  So I had to switch to Navionics.  I've been using them for about 10 years now, including on Lake Minnetonka.  The countours are pretty accurate from what I can tell.  I have compared it to my hand held with a Lakemaster chip and there isn't a noticeable difference.  On Tonka I'm also concerned about safety and staying within the channels to avoid any unexpected shallow areas and so far I have been satisfied with that part of it.  I don't do as much fishing on Minnetonka as I used to - mostly because I can't stand the recreational traffic and amateur hour at the public access, but also because the fishing has gotten a lot harder (clear water + pressure), so my sample size is shrinking...

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