One of the most important gear for a fisherman, regardless of his expertise level, is a fish finder. A fish finder is recent all the rage, due to its accuracy and precision. Such a product can easily detect and locate sea-life underwater. The best portable fish finder can come in many forms, however, most customers seek small and lightweight ones. The reason for this being you can carry such a compact product anywhere.
We know just how hard it can be to find such a product on the market. But worry not, as today we’ll review some of the best models on the market for you. Our list of portable fish finders will give you your money’s worth.
In this portable fish finder review, we will be checking out innovative creations by highly renowned brands. We’ll also cover their pros and cons to show you what makes them unique.
Without further ado, let us get right into the product reviews.
Top 7 Best Portable Fish Finder Reviews
Our first product on this review is this amazing Garmin Striker 4 fish finder. But this model comes with a convenient and portable kit. For external appearance, this portable fish finder sports a light grey body. You can also find a minimalistic keypad on the device.
The fish finder offers a multitude of amazing functions, but for a moderately budget friendly price. However, given the array of features that you can work with, we believe the extra splurge is definitely worth it.
Array of Display Sizes
Available in sizes of 3.5, 5 and 7 inches, this fish finder can cater towards people of all ages. We know just how important the display size of a fish finder is for some people. The best thing here is that there is a little something for everyone. So you will not have to worry about sticking to only one display sized fish finder.
On the other hand, this high quality product also comes equipped with a built-in GPS plotter. The indicator will help you keep track of where the device is, under dark and murky water.The GPS tracker works in real time, so you can easily detect and locate the device.
CHIRP Sonar Sensor
Another cool feature of this fish finder is its CHIRP sonar sensor. This feature is pretty old-school to some, but definitely still as effective. The CHIRP sonar sensor detects all kinds of noises from sea-creatures. At the same time, it distinguishes between vegetation and fish schools.
The built-in flasher that this fish finder comes with is a great addition to the already versatile features.
- The product is very lightweight
- This fish finder comes with a portable kit that you can carry like a backpack
- High quality CHIRP sonar sensor is accurate
- User-friendly keypad interface
- The display can be quite large.
- Even though being under 200 dollars, the product can still be quite expensive to many.
Our next pick of the day is this amazing Deeper PRO+ fish finder. This fish finder comes equipped with Smart sonar technology for better operation.
Lightweight and Uniquely Shaped
This high quality product is very lightweight and sports a convenient spherical shape. Thanks to the unique design, it can easily float on water when required to.
Ideal for kayak fishing, this incredible fish finder can scan all kinds of water for potential schools of fish. An amazing feature of this innovative fish finder is its Smart iOS and Android connectivity. You can expect this bad boy to connect without showing any lagging.
This Smart feature allows you to navigate the situation going on underwater, right from the comfort of your own phone. Hence, display size is not a problem here.
Built-In GPS Plotter
The Deeper PRO+ fish finder also comes equipped with an in-built GPS plotter that will allow you to keep track of what the device captures and scans. It’ll also look for the fish finder itself if it sinks or loses its way in any case.
You’ll find the GPS tracker to be worth the time if you love the idea of reviewing the situation later. This can help you notice the anomalies underwater afterward too.
This best portable fish finder does not require any kind of cellular network to connect with your phone. Instead, it uses wireless WiFi connectivity as a hotspot itself. The manufacturer’s advice customers to keep their cellular data turned off when using this fish finder for best results.
With this fish finder in your inventory, you can scan down to about 250 feet in total in freshwater. The dual beam sonar sensor allows coverage at once and provides up to 15 scans per second.
- No extra internet connection is required
- Amazing depth reach
- The scanned image is clear and in high definition
- Dual beam sonar sensor is effective
- Connects with almost all mobile devices.
- The product is not too budget friendly.
The next Deeper PRO product that we have is much lighter in size than the previous one we just reviewed. This high quality product also boasts a simple, spherical shape to its construction. This shape is ideal for maximum buoyancy.
Similar to the previous Deeper PRO+ model, this best portable fish finder comes with a wireless WiFi connection too. This way, you can easily connect the product to your Android or iOS mobile phone.
Dual Frequency Sonar Sensor
The product also comes with a dual frequency sonar sensor that works to cover a wide area at once. While one cone scans at a maximum of 55 degrees, the other scans at 15 degrees. This way, you can expect the product to scan through all the tricky cracks and crevices under murky, dark, water.
Unlike the previous Deeper PRO+ model that we reviewed here, this bad boy can actually scan much deeper. In fact, you can expect this fish finder to reach a maximum depth of 260 feet in freshwater. It’ll still maintain proper connectivity up to 330 feet at most.
High Resolution Images
The patented Hi-Res imaging provides crystal clear topography of what is underneath. As a result, you’ll be able to distinguish debris from fish clearly.
- The product is very innovative and quick
- High quality dual sonar sensors provide wide coverage
- Amazing wireless WiFi connectivity
- Dual cone scans
- Crystal clear and high definition imaging.
- The product is not too budget friendly.
Up next, we have the Humminbird PIRANHAMAX 4 fishfinder in matte black shade. This high quality product comes with a clear display size of 4.3 inches maximum. The display is a TFT-colored one, so you can expect crisp and vibrant images at all times.
Portable and Lightweight
Similar to the first Garmin Striker 4 fish finder that we reviewed on this article, this bad boy comes with a portable kit as well. The kit itself is very lightweight and will allow you to carry the device wherever you go.
On the other hand, this best portable fish finder comes equipped with dual sonar beams that can cover a wide area at once. The fish finder can effectively work for a really long time, as the device operates at a power of 2400 watts. This wattage equals about 300 watts RMS in total.
Good Depth Reach
With a total depth reach of about 600 feet in freshwater, you can expect this fish finder to go very deep. It will also do a complete scan of all that you need to see underwater.
This fish finder comes with dual sonar sensor cones that work at angles- 28 degrees and 16 degrees. The product comes with a tilt-swivel mount that you can easily attach to the platform that you are on. However, we doubt that you will need to do that as the fish finder comes with a portable kit too.
- Very lightweight product
- High quality dual sonar sensor
- The product comes with a portable kit
- Matte black shade looks chic and minimalistic
- The product can be found in two other models as well.
- This fish finder is not too budget friendly.
This hawkeye depth finder is an ideal tool for fishermen working in freshwater and saltwater. The product is very lightweight and compact in size, mainly due to the 2.3 inches LCD screen. However, note that this amazing product actually has a really small monotone screen.
Ideal for fishing in shallow waters, this product can scan within a range of 1.5 feet to a total of 99.9 feet. The gear is also equipped with a sonar sensor beam which works to cover a large area at once.
Working at almost 25 degrees at once, the sonar sensor beam of this fish-finder can detect fish lurking around cracks and crevices.
Detailed High Definition Images
The detailed imaging on the display will let you distinguish between fish and vegetation underwater. As a result, you can expect an increase in your success rates by numbers.
This fish finder also comes with a mountable stand on the back for comfortable and simple placement. This way, you can be hands-free while fishing and focus on what is really important- catching that fish.
The fish finder comes with a cable of 35 feet in length, as well as a tie-strap. The strap will let you hold onto the device once it is underwater. This makes the fish finder very easy to use from anywhere, including from the edge of a bridge, the dock and even your own boat or kayak.
This product is very portable, as it boasts a small body that can easily fit in the palm of your hand!
- The product is very lightweight and small
- High quality sonar sensor can cover a wide area
- Moderate depth reach for a product this compact in size
- The display on this fish finder is not colored.
6. FishHunter Directional Fish Finder-Wireless Fish Finder
Further down the list, we have this unique and smart fishfinder manufactured by the renowned brand FishHunter. This high quality product comes with a whopping number of 5 amazing tri-transducers. You can expect the product to cover a wide and large area at once.
Ideal for saltwater, kayak, and ice fishing, this fish finder sports a black and orange spherical body. The spherical shape allows incredible buoyancy.
The product also has wireless WiFi connectivity that allows the device to easily connect to your mobile phone or tablet. This way, you do not have to worry about display size being a problem. The wireless connectivity goes all the way up to 150 feet.
3D Sonar Sensor Tech
Alongside that, the fish finder comes with 3D sonar sensors that offer op to 5 different viewing angles. This way you can get a clear picture of the situation below.
The 3D sonar sensors also allow bathymetric and directional casting, as well as ice fishing flasher images. On top of that, the depth reach of this product is 160 feet in freshwater and 100 feet in ice water.
- High quality 3D sonar sensors provide a 5 angle view to users
- The product has a spherical shape to it which floats well on the water
- Durable and strong body
- The wireless connectivity is pretty good.
- The product is not too budget friendly
- The depth reach of the fish finder could have been more, in respect to its high price.
The last product that we have on this list is this amazing HawkEyeFishTrax fish finder. This product has a bright red and black color for the body. Alongside that, the product comes with a dot matrix display of 2.75 inches in total.
You will find the FishTrax sonar sensor of this product to be able to locate all kinds of sea life on the bottom. This in turn will allow you a complete view of the situation below.
At the same time, the sonar sensor of the fish finder is also trollable, therefore being able to mount and set up in various places. The greatest feature of this fish finder is its 10 sensitivity levels. You can use them to adjust the fish detection to your requirements.
LED Lighting System Incorporated
This fish finder by HawkEye comes with an LED backlight as well. So you do not have to worry about losing the product at night. On top of that, the sonar sensor of the product can easily do a side-scan. This will show you the most important parts underwater.
From scanning through weeds to even the trickiest cracks and crevices, you can expect this baby to show you all.
However, the only downside to this product is that the display is monotone. Which is why you’ll have to work with a completely black and white image scanning.
While the monotone screen helps to make the product very budget-friendly, it also takes away the amazing crisp and brightness. This issue arises especially under harsh sunlight and in dark settings.
The keypad, on the other hand, is very easy to understand and work with. Hence, everyone of any age and expertise level can work with this best portable fish finder. The product is also pretty lightweight, so you can carry it wherever you go with you.
You will find that this portable fish finder also comes with a fish alarm. This will allow you to detect when the device comes in contact with any potential catch down below.
- High quality LED backlight
- The product is lightweight and compact in size
- The fish alarm is very audible
- Durable and convenient construction
- Budget friendly.
- The product display is not 100 percent colored, which can come off as a downside to many.
Top 7 Best Portable Fish Finder Buying Guide
Before you invest in any product, it is very important that you do thorough research on the factors and features that distinguish between a high quality fish finder and a poor quality one.
Although different fish finders come equipped with different features, most of the high quality ones will come with at least one or two of the below mentioned factors.
It is also important that you keep track of your own budget when buying the best portable fish finder. This is because the features of different fish finders will actually make the price of the product variety as well.
Therefore, if you want to know our take on it, do not go overboard with the splurge. First and foremost, note down why you really need a fish finder, and for what kind of fishing as well.
Before we get to all that, let us discuss the factors that you need to consider before investing in any kind of fish finder on the market.
Without further ado, let us get right into it.
First and foremost, the display of the fish finder is the most important part of it, since that is what you will be looking at for details. However, some manufacturers actually produce very expensive fish finders that come equipped with a very tiny display. Should you be getting that for your next fishing trip? We think not.
Without a large and high quality display on your fishfinder, working with the product is basically useless and a waste of money. There is no point in investing thousands of bucks (yes, you heard that right!) in a fish finder that comes with a small display of only 1.5 inches.
So what size should you be looking for here? Well, the portable fish finder will come equipped with a display size of at least 2.5 inches to 7 inches at most.
Although the latter size range is not completely necessary, you can still expect the top brands to equip their branded products with such specifications.
You do have to remember that budget is also a very big factor here. A good fish finder will come with a moderate display size of about 3.5 inches. You should invest in an equipment integrated with this kind of display since it will most likely be portable and lightweight.
On the other hand, we also have the type of display that you need to take into account here. When dealing with portable fish finders on a budget, you will obviously want to invest in a product that will not empty your pockets in a day!
However, it is also important for you to invest in a quality fish finder that comes with a high-quality display. It will clearly show what you are supposed to be seeing for information regarding the situation under water.
In this case, a fish finder with an LCD or LED colored screen will be your best bet. Although falling on the slightly expensive end of the spectrum, you can expect such fish finders to portray a clear, crisp and bright image of the situation down below.
Moreover, the LCD or LED display of a high quality fish finder will also be able to work well under the harsh rays and glares of the sun. It will also provide bright and crystal-clear images in high definition during the dead of the night.
But in any way, we do not want to force you here. If you are on a tight budget, you can surely go ahead with black and white display fish finders, as they are not all that bad either.
Of course, you cannot possibly compare the two display types here, but it will surely be worth the money as well. This is especially if you have to keep track of your total expenditure by the end of the day.
We suggest you not invest in an achromatic display fish finder because of the minimal information portrayed by it. The entire point of investing in a fish finder is to be able to distinguish between the vegetation, debris and fish down there, right?
The problem with a monotone display fish finder is that it can be difficult to differentiate between all those variants. Therefore, you can never really know if you are casting a line for the right stuff.
On top of that, the glare resistance of a black-and-white display fish finder can be really poor. Do remember that we say this in comparison to that provided by a colored LED or LCD display.
Working with a grayscale display fish finder can be really hard. This is especially if you are working right under the harsh sunlight or around the break of dawn.
Another important feature that sets apart the fish finder from a poor one is it’s water resistance ability. You will obviously have to make the product float or even dive into different kinds of water when fishing.
In such scenarios, working with a product that will not corrode too easily will help you out. On top of that, the anti-rust feature of the fish finder will also ensure that it lasts longer.
When investing in the best portable fish finder, check if the product comes coated with an anti-rust substance or not. Most renowned manufacturers will make sure that their produced goods last you for a really long time. This is thanks to the water-resistance coating that the product comes equipped with.
The Budget of Best Castable Fish Finder
Of course, we just had to mention your own budget here. The thing about fish finders is that you can find this product in many different price ranges. The price range of the fish finder falls anywhere within 100-500 dollars.
This is why it is important that you do not invest in just any kind of fish finder. You will want to invest in a product that is worth the extra splurge. Do make sure that it offers a range of features that you can use on a day-to-day basis.
Remember that your product should also have an array of features that will give competitors a run for their money. Your chosen fish finder should be lightweight, packed with amazing features and also budget-friendly at the same time.
In our list above, we managed to mention products that boast amazing features yet can be found at a budget-friendly price range.
Our fish finder picks are also very versatile. They come packed with amazing features that will assist you in your fishing trips on a daily basis.
As a general rule of thumb, the main feature of a fish finder is its depth reach. Without a good maximum depth reach, you won’t be able to see what is lurking beneath the surface. As a result you will also miss out on potential catches.
In this case, you should invest in a high-quality portable fish finder that can easily scan up to at least 190 feet in total.
Today we included products that usually have a depth reach ranging from 150 to 330 feet in total. One of the products had a maximum depth reach of 600 feet as well, so you get the gist here.
The depth-reach that you want from the fish finder also depends on the kind of fishing that you’ll be doing.
Many fishermen, especially professionals, require a total depth reach of at least 350-600ft to scan a wide area. This kind of depth reach is mainly required for saltwater and rough water fishing.
If you are a beginner, you can easily go for a depth reach of 150 feet to 300 feet only.
You also have to determine the fish you want to catch, and therefore plan accordingly. If you want to capture small fish, you should go for a fish finder with a total depth reach of 330 feet or so. We say so because small fish are usually found near the sea bed.
In the end, everything actually depends on you and your fishing preferences, so just make sure to shop accordingly.
If you want to get the fish finder, try to look for one that comes with the following extra features!
A durable carrying or travel kit
This kit is what will allow you to travel with the fish finder and its additional equipment. We have mentioned two different products in our article today that come equipped with a portable kit.
A GPS tracker is a very essential part of any high-quality fish finder. The GPS tracker will allow you to stay with the device in real time. It will allow you to follow where the product takes you as well.
It is important for a fish finder to come equipped with a GPS tracker that works in real time. Mainly because it will help you find the device in case it sinks or loses connection with you.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is a portable kit for a fish finder heavy?
No, a portable kit is actually not too heavy. However, it does add a bit to your own weight. But a portable kit is very helpful as it allows you to travel with the whole inventory at once.
Can I use a portable fish finder on my kayak?
Yes! You can easily use a portable fish finder on a kayak. Do make sure that the product comes with a durable mount. This is so that you can place the device on it to be completely hands-free at all times.
By now, we bet you have the clearest idea regarding the best portable fish finder and all its specifications. We hope you liked our top picks and that they seem to be worth the money for you!
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