My old graph finally took the official dive. But that means I get to buy the latest and greatest in fishing technology! But I will be looking for some help before I go out and listen to some random guy in a Gander or Cabella's shirt if you know what I mean.
I have a Lakemaster chip, only 2 years old. Which is good, but if I go with a Lowrance unit I will have to spend another $130 on a different chip. I have heard great things about the new Hummingbird units, even that they have leapfrogged Lowrance a bit now because of their purchase of Lakemaster and MinnKota, and more for the dollar features that are built in to their units. However, I have also heard that Lowrance still has faster processors and are still the industry standard.
I'm leaning towards the 2014 Hummingbird 899c HD with Side Imaging, (the 2013 model is 898c). A bit more than I want to spend but a lot of features for the dollar I think. Plus I already have a chip for it.
So I need some advice, because this area of electronics is really the weakest part of my hunting and fishing game, if you know what I mean. And I don't want to make a $1000.00 mistake!
You're right, the new fish finders with GPS can get very expensive. I too was going to get an all in one unit but decided not to. Not sure if you want to go this route, but I bought a Garmin with the lake chip, I think the total was around $300. I use it in the boat and my vehicle, which makes it a plus for me. Thus I could get a fish finder at a much more reasonable price and I get a GPS that I can use anywhere.
Are you sure your older lowrance chip will work in a hummingbird? I have been a Lowrance guy for years but have also been thinking about swinging the same way as you. The chip thing could be a deciding factor. I have heard great things about updating Humingbird units and there warranty also.
On a side not you should be concerned a little bit more about making sure I have a comfy seat in your boat! I would hate to have to drive mine all the time....