Best Humminbird Fish Finders – The DEFINITIVE List
If you’re on a quest to find the best Humminbird fish finder we have put together a few of our top picks to make your search a little easier.
Whether you want the best technology or you’re after a basic device, we’ve highlighted some of the best features from this top fish finder brand.
7 Best Humminbird Fish Finders
1: Humminbird Helix 7 Chirp Mega SI GPS G3 (best overall)
The Humminbird Helix 7 Chirp is one of the best Humminbird fish finders in terms of features and versatility. With its 7-inch screen it can be pretty large. It’s just over 10 inches long and just under 6 inches wide, so it can be an ideal size for bass boats. But if you have enough room on your deck, it can also be mounted to a kayak.
This fish finder has excellent sonar technology, with both Mega Down Imaging and Mega Side Imaging to give you a clear view of what’s beneath and to the side of your boat.
The side imaging sonar can scan up to 125 feet on either side of your vessel, while the down imaging sonar can transmit images from up to 125 feet below your vessel, letting you get a clear picture of the underwater landscape all around your boat. This can make it great for waters you’ve never fished, as well as your local lake.
This Helix 7 Mega SI G3 features CHIRP sonar for increased detail and image clarity, transmitting information on the type of structure, depth of the water, and the bottom. Fish arches can alert you to the location of the fish.
This fish finder also benefits from having built-in precision GPS and US lake and coastal charts. It’s compatible with the optional charts from LakeMaster and CoastMaster.
2: Humminbird Helix 5 Chirp SI GPS G2 (runner up)
The Humminbird Helix 5 Chirp SI has similar features to the Helix 7 but in a smaller package. With a high-definition 5-inch color screen, this can be an ideal choice for fishing kayaks, bass boats or even small lake cruisers. The LED display can be a good size for reading the on-screen information, while not being overly large.
One of the best features of this fish finder is the Side Imaging technology, which can scan either side of your boat. This can be particularly useful in lakes and bays you’ve never fished before, as it can let you cover more water with less effort, without having to actually paddle or power your boat to that location. It also features Down Imaging.
It can show you underwater structure and potential fishing holes that you might otherwise miss. However, it doesn’t have the Mega Side Imaging that the Helix 7 Mega SI has, which means the quality of the images transmitted won’t be as good.
But it does benefit from having built-in charts from Humminbird Basemap so you can identify docks and underwater hazards. It also has integrated GPS for easy navigation, allowing you to pinpoint any lucrative fishing holes so you can return to them later.
It has Dual Beam CHIRP sonar and comes with a transducer and a mount.
3: Humminbird Helix 5 Chirp DI GPS G2 (best value)
This Humminbird Helix 5 Chirp DI can give you excellent features combined with the ease-of-use of a large 5-inch screen, offering good value in a larger fish finder.
Aside from the widescreen color display, one of the best features of this model is the Down Imaging sonar. This can let you see a detailed view of what is beneath your boat, so you can identify the bottom surfaces and fish-holding structure more easily.
It also benefits from having Dual Beam CHIRP sonar for increased detail of the underwater landscape. This can make it easier to locate fish within the beam, as you can use Narrow Beam to increase the detail in a smaller area, or Wide Beam to cover a greater area.
Being at a lower price point than some of the higher-tech models, this doesn’t have Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, or Side Imaging. It does, however, have GPS, so it can be perfect for navigating new lakes and backcountry waters, as well as finding your way back to the dock after your successful fishing trip. You can mark up to 2,500 waypoints.
It also has Autochart Live, which is a useful feature that can map the water in real time as you move your boat, helping you to get detailed information about the contours and vegetation to find more fish.
Additionally, this fish finder comes with a Navionics SD card with built-in charts to cover 21,000 bodies of water across the US, as well as US coastal waters.
4: Humminbird Helix 5 Chirp GPS G3 PT (best compact and portable)
This Humminbird Helix 5 PT can be the perfect fish finder if you’re looking for portability. It comes with a Portable Carrying Case that can be ideal for transportation and can also be used to mount the fish finder.
This can be great for kayaks, inflatable boats or rented boats where you may not be able to mount a fish finder to the deck. It also comes with a suction cup mount and a transducer.
It can also be convenient for ice fishing. However, there is a dedicated ice fishing version of this fish finder that comes with a battery and a charger that might be more suitable.
The 5-inch color screen offers enlarged images compared to smaller screens and it has the added benefit of a landscape mount for a widescreen display of the underwater world.
This fish finder benefits from Digital Dual Spectrum CHIRP sonar for detailed views of the terrain and arches to highlight fish within the beam.
The integrated GPS can let you narrow down your location and mark your own route. There are built-in charts for US lakes and you can also add further charts with the optional LakeMaster and CoastMaster software from Humminbird. You’ll also find Autochart Live software to let you create your own maps in real time as you move across your favorite lakes and bays.
5: Humminbird PiranhaMax 4 DI (best for kayaks)
The PiranhaMax 4 DI can be an excellent size for mounting on a kayak. It’s compact, with a 4.3-inch color screen, a tilt and swivel mount, and it comes with a transducer with a temperature sensor.
One of the best features of this PiranhaMax fish finder is the Down Imaging technology. This can scan underneath your kayak and give you a clear picture of what’s below your boat, such as vegetation, rocks, timber, and other structure, so that you can better understand the landscape in your hunt for fish.
It features Dual Beam sonar, so it doesn’t have CHIRP technology. But you can choose either a narrow or wide beam depending on whether you’re looking for enhanced detail from a smaller area or improved coverage of a large area. It can scan up to 320 feet.
It has an easy-to-use keypad and you can set up fish alarms so that an alarm can be triggered when a fish is detected. It also has a fish ID function that can be switched on so that it can be easier to distinguish fish from vegetation, using fish symbols rather than arches, which can be useful for beginners.
This fish finder does not have GPS or a lot of advanced features, which may be appealing to some anglers looking for a more standard fish finder with minimal bells and whistles. But it may not be for everyone for this reason. However, it can be ideal for small lakes and rivers where you just want a compact device to help you find fish from your kayak.
6: Humminbird PiranhaMax 4 (best budget)
The Humminbird PiranhaMax 4 is a basic fish finder that can be ideal if you’re on a budget. It is a compact size with a 4.3 inch LED color screen, making it a good choice for small boats and kayaks. It can be particularly useful for kayak fishing in smaller lakes and rivers, or shallow bays, with an easy-to-use keypad.
However, because of its more limited features, it might not be the best fish finder for deep water or ocean fishing as it’s Dual Beam sonar technology is less powerful than some of the pricier models. It can show depths of up to 320 feet or 600 feet depending on your chosen frequency (compared to our top pick Helix 7 MSI which can show up to 1,200 feet or 3,500 feet).
A useful feature of the PiranhaMax 4 is the fish symbol function, which allows you to view fish icons instead of sonar arches. This can be easier to use for new anglers, especially if you’re not used to reading sonar information. The fish finder can show you the depth of the fish above each fish ID so it can be easier to target individual fish.
This model also benefits from having fish alarms and depth alarms that you can set to suit your preferences. It comes with a transducer and a tilt and swivel mount.
7: Humminbird Helix 8 Chirp Mega DI GPS G4N
This Humminbird Helix 8 can be a fantastic fish finder if you love big screens. This one features an 8-inch screen color display for clear images and improved details in all lights.
As well as the large screen, it also benefits from having soft-touch buttons for easy operation in all conditions.
One of the main features of this fish finder is the Mega Down Imaging technology, which can give you an up to three times clearer view of below your boat compared to standard down imaging, working up to 125 feet depth.
It also features Dual Spectrum CHIRP sonar to give you a more detailed view of underwater structure and the location of fish. It has a Low-Q CHIRP transducer that can scan using Wide Mode and Narrow Mode, depending on how you want to look for fish. However, it doesn’t have side imaging included.
The Helix 8 also benefits from having Bluetooth and Wi-Fi to connect with compatible shallow water anchors and downriggers, as well as connection to the FishSmart app.
Another useful feature is the built-in GPS for easy navigation and waypoint marking. It also features integrated charts for 10,000 lakes and continental US coastal waters with Humminbird Basemap software.
Features You Need To Consider When Choosing A Humminbird Fish Finder
CHIRP Digital Sonar
Having CHIRP digital sonar can be a great feature to have on your fish finder because it can transmit higher quality images with greater detail compared to traditional sonar. The CHIRP (Compressed High Intensity Radar Pulse) technology operates over a greater range of frequencies than traditional sonar, so it can find more fish. It can show better detail of the bottom and any structure, as well as fish.
The Dual Spectrum CHIRP sonar can let you set the width of the beam, either wide or narrow. The narrow beam can show increased detail in a narrower area for more precise targeting of fish. The wide beam can scan a larger area, which can be useful for fishing in shallow waters.
The sonar can help you differentiate between fish and vegetation or structure, with arches to highlight the fish.
Side imaging can be particularly useful in larger bodies of water, as it can help you cover more water with less boat travel, which can save you time and energy. Side imaging sonars can scan out to either side of your boat, giving you a clearer view of the underwater landscape, helping you to identify any potential honey holes.
Some of the top fish finders will have Mega Side Imaging technology, which can display superior images, allowing you to see almost photo-like images of what’s under the water. This can be much easier to analyze, especially if you’re new to sonar.
Down Imaging can be a great feature to have. This technology uses high-frequency sonar to transmit images back to your screen with enhanced detail. This can enable you to tell the difference between vegetation, the bottom, rocks, and fish.
The Mega Down Imaging sonar, which can be found on some top-of-the-range fish finders, can generate near photo-quality images. The Mega Down Imaging can be great if you fish in shallow water as the highly detailed images tend to have a shorter depth range than the standard down imaging sonar.
Autochart Live is available on most GPS-enabled Humminbird fish finders. This can be an excellent tool for fishing in large bodies of water, such as bays and large lakes. It works by mapping the lake as you move your boat, making it ideal for lakes you’ve never fished before. But it can also be ideal for local lakes that aren’t already mapped.
As you move your boat across the water, the Autochart will record and create detailed maps, including contours and depths, highlighting vegetation, and bottom hardness. You can then save the map to view on your next fishing trip or view it immediately.
Video: How To Use AutoChart Live Custom Mapping
GPS (Global Positioning System) technology can be an excellent feature to have on a fish finder.
This can be used to pinpoint your location, allowing you to navigate backcountry waters, mark waypoints, and find your way back to the dock or your favorite fishing spot.
There are various Humminbird fish finders that come in a portable model, usually with PT at the end of their model name/number. These will often come with a carrying case that can let you mount the fish finder inside the case for ease of use - ideal for inflatable kayaks or other small vessels.
Portable fish finders can be useful for many different fishing trips, including ice fishing. There is also a range of Humminbird fish finders designed for ice fishing, with many of them having a battery and charger included, so you can charge it up in the middle of a frozen lake.
How To Read A Humminbird Fish Finder Screen
The first thing to remember is that what’s displayed on your screen is being transmitted from your transducer. So if your transducer is at the back of your kayak, then the images are also from the back of your kayak.
On one side of your screen you should have numbers next to horizontal lines. The numbers should go from low to high as you go down to the bottom of the screen. These numbers represent the depths of the water, so you can see the depths of fish and other objects. The horizontal line at the very bottom is the bottom of the lake.
The darker and thicker the line at the bottom, the harder the bottom surface is. The thinner and lighter the line, the softer the bottom is. For example, a thin, light line could represent sand or mud.
Another thing you want to look at is the sonar arches. The arches represent fish, with the thicker arches generally being larger fish.
Video: How To Use A Humminbird Sonar Fish Finder
The fish appear as arches because they are generally swimming through the cone of your sonar, so the largest portion of the arch is when they’re in the middle of the beam. The thinner edges are when they are entering and leaving the beam.
If you’re after the best Humminbird fish finder, we think it’s the Helix 7 CHIRP Mega SI GPS G3 because of its excellent features, including high-quality Mega Side and Down Imaging. It’s also equally suited to both kayaks and larger vessels, with an easy-to-read 7-inch color display.
A worthy runner-up is the Helix 5 CHIRP SI with its fantastic side imaging technology, giving a clearer view of what’s around your boat. It could also be a more convenient size for smaller vessels.
Remember to think about the level of technology you want from your fish finder and the type of water you plan to fish, as these fish finders may not be ideal for everyone.