I guess if price is no object then yes it is very capable. We use them in the offshore industry alot for seabed surveys;Tracking pipelines after they are laid, placements of wells in oil fields. I was not aware that there were any available in the recreational fishermans price range. If you have a link to a side scan sonar company that can be operated from a recreational vessel I'd love to have it.
We use the hummingbird 997 si in the search and rescue field. It works great for that. Many times the picture is so clear that you can see exactly what you are looking for. As in a log looks like a log, a body like a body, boat like a boat etc... We paid about 1800.00 for each one.
The biggest issue with the humming bird is you can only use the side scan feature for shallow water. If you will be using it for fairly shallow water then it is good but be reminded that it is difficult to learn how to read it especially when in a turn.
Have one on my boat, works great once you learn system. It gives a clear B&W picture of the bottom down to about 80ft on a choppy day and down to 150ft on calm days. Works great in the bay. Follow mounting location instructions exactly and you should be impressed with performace of unit.
thanks for the input.it seems like the price is about 900 more with the side scan, i was also wondering about the rest of the unit. if i thought it would catch a few more fish it seems like it might be worth it
i have talked to a couple of captains, and they all said that they werent to fond of it, because under rougher conditions and poor visibilit. They couldnt see a damn thing but if these guys are getting clear readings at 120 ft thenit might be worth it.
I fished on a boat with one yesterday. We fished 30' to 50' and it put fish in the boat. Took me a while to learn what I was looking at, but the guys that owned the boat helped a lot explaining it to me. Put the curser on a ledge and make a weighpoint, then drive to it. Piece of cake.
I have used the Imagenex Sportscan and it does a pretty good job as long as it is not to rough and you can stear a straight course. It is a towed unit with max depth (of the unit) to 100 ft. It cost about 5K and you will need a GPS and laptop.
Have never used a boat mounted unit but would imagine it would be very sensitive to boat yaw, pitch and vertical translation from waves.