Fish finders are incredibly useful tools whether you’re looking to easily find prey, navigate the waters, or understand your surroundings and avoid obstacles beneath the surface.
Fish finders use some incredibly technology to help boaters and fisherman make the most out of their time on the water, including flashers, sonars, echoes, transducers, and GPS.
There are built-in options, portable options, and handheld units to suit every fishing need, from yachts to canoes and everything in between.
There are fish finders designed for inlands, coastal waters, and deep waters so that you can enjoy top performance no matter your location.
Whether you’re a novice boater or a seasoned angler, the number of options out there can make it a daunting task to find the right fish finder for your needs.
They all have different features and offer varying performance depending on how and where you’ll be using them. Each find finder has its own strengths and is better applied in various situations, so not everyone will appreciate the features on every model.
Since fish finders aren’t a one-size-fits-all type of product, we spent 23 hours analyzing 24 fish finders and considered 899 customer reviews to find the best fish finders in Canada.
Following our last update, we recommend the Garmin 010-01550-00 Striker 4 Fish Finder for its accuracy, quality, and helpful navigational features.
Table of Contents
Fish Finder Comparative Table
|Garmin 010-01550-00 Striker 4 Fish Finder||
||9.5/10||See price on Amazon|
|Humminbird 410220-1 Helix 5 Fish Finder||
||9.7/10||See price on Amazon|
|Lucky Kayak Portable Handheld Fish Finder||
||9.0/10||See price on Amazon|
Our Pick for The Best Fish Finder
The Best Overall
As far as fish finders go, the Garmin 010-01550-00 Striker 4 Fish Finder is truly the best of the best, overall. It has high quality graphics, unique features, the best GPS tracking possible, and it is highly affordable. With a great waterproof rating and powerful technology, it really doesn’t get better.
Garmin 010-01550-00 Striker 4 Fish Finder Video Review
What We Think of the Garmin 010-01550-00 Striker 4 Fish Finder
There are so many things we need to share about this Garmin fish finder. Its compact size and lightweight construction make it the ideal companion for any type of water based activity, no matter how large or small the boat is. There are a couple different display modes to choose from; the standard lets you see the fish profile in the waters below you, and the other acts as a standard GPS, showing you the way to a target location or allowing you to keep track of information and travel specs.
This is a very powerful little device, as it can detect fish and objects up to 1600 ft in freshwater and 750 ft deep in saltwater. The CHIRP sonar technology is the best you can get, as it creates accurate fish profiles and can offer better target separation than any other detection technology. The sonar rewind feature lets you look back at your travels and mark destinations that have hazards or are prime fishing spots just in case you missed them during your excursion on the water.
In my eyes, this fish finder is unbeatable. I love the ability to mark things; I travel a lot in the same areas and now I can keep track of great fishing spots and hazards. The ability to travel somewhere with GPS guidance is fairly unheard of for me, so I was really happy to discover that feature. The screen size is perfect and it’s really quite accurate. I honestly don’t have enough good things to say.
The waypoint map is incredibly unique and allows you to get prime directions to locations, ensuring you’ll never get lost in unfamiliar waters. Your purchase will include the tilt/swivel mount and a one-year warranty to make sure you get a great term of use out of your new fish finder. You don’t have any options to scale back what you see, but overall, this is one of the best fish finders currently available.
Garmin 010-01550-00 Striker 4 Fish Finder Specifications
- Dimensions: 3.6” x 1.6” x 5.9”
- Weight: 0.5 lbs
- Screen Size: 3.5”
- Maximum Depth: 1,600 ft in freshwater, 750 ft in saltwater
- Information on Display: Depth, water temperature
- Display Modes: 2
- Warranty: 1 year
Garmin 010-01550-00 Striker 4 Fish Finder Pros and Cons
- CHIRP sonar helps create crisper fish arches with better target separation
- GPS function includes speed and tracking previous locations, offers information such as time to destination, distance to destination, and bearing, as well as rewind to mark spots you may have missed
- Comes with a tilt/swivel mount
- Has a waypoint map
- Minimal adjustability and no backlight
Our Final Opinion about the Garmin 010-01550-00 Striker 4 Fish Finder[usrlist Quality:5 Effectiveness:5 Design:5 Price:5]
Overall, the Garmin 010-01550-00 Striker 4 Fish Finder is one of our most recommended products. Although it is missing a few extra features, the overall design and technology put into this model put it at the top of the most-needed products list. We guarantee you won’t be disappointed.
Our Upgrade Pick for a Fish Finder
The Advanced Choice
Anyone wanting a fish finder that is a cut above the rest should take a closer look at the Humminbird 410220-1 Helix 5 Fish Finder. Its technology is unmatched, and its large, high quality display provides the best visuals for underwater visualizations. The only thing that’ll make you hesitate is the price.
Humminbird 410220-1 Helix 5 Fish Finder Video Review
What We Think of The Humminbird 410220-1 Helix 5 Fish Finder
This Humminbird fish finder may initially scare you off with its high price tag, but if you take the time to get to know the product, you’ll understand perfectly why the price point is so extravagant. With a maximum depth of 1200 ft, you won’t be able to reach the bottoms of every body of water, but you’ll see plenty to keep you occupied. On the main screen, you will be informed of your current speed, depth, and water temperature.
This is a fairly large unit with a 5” screen size and a weight of four pounds, but the large display is very useful. You have two display modes to choose from, letting you select how much detail you wish to see, and the CHIRP sonar technology paints a very clear image of what is going on beneath you and in the surrounding waters. The GPS technology is accurate to within 2.5 metres, so you’ll always be able to find your locations with ease.
For the price of this device, I had really high expectations. For once, I was not disappointed by a product. It’s a bit annoying that I can’t have Canadian units, but otherwise, this thing is flawless. The technology is unreal and the display is honestly quite stunning. It’s so easy to identify all of the information with a quick scan, and it’s really accurate. Very impressed.
The built in base map is more accurate in American waters than Canadian, but it displays location information for navigational tools such as buoys, daymarkers, hazards, marinas, and more. The built in cartography map can give you some detailed information about your surroundings, and the AutoChart Live function can create real time maps of your fishing spots. With features like these in abundance, its no wonder this model takes the crown for most advanced fish finder on the market.
Humminbird 410220-1 Helix 5 Fish Finder Specifications
- Dimensions: 15” x 10” x 5”
- Weight: 4 lbs
- Screen Size: 5”
- Maximum Depth: 1200 ft
- Information on Display: Speed, depth, water temperature
- Display Modes: 2
Humminbird 410220-1 Helix 5 Fish Finder Pros and Cons
- Built in base map shows locations of buoys, daymarkers, hazards, marinas, and other navigational tools
- GPS technology is accurate to within 2.5 m
- Built in Uni Map cartography
- AutoChart Live can create real time maps of your fishing spots
- Very expensive
- Imperial units only; not great for Canadians
Our Final Opinion About the Humminbird 410220-1 Helix 5 Fish Finder[usrlist Quality:5 Effectiveness:5 Design:5 Price:4]
Overall, the Humminbird 410220-1 Helix 5 Fish Finder is one of the most advanced devices you’ll find anywhere. It has unique mapping and tracking abilities, one of the most accurate GPS systems, and an intuitive user interface. If you have the budget and understand imperial units, this is the only fish finder for you.
Our Budget Pick for a Fish Finder
The Budget Pick
While there are sophisticated fish finders out there that cost a lot of money, not every model is like that. If you want an effective fish finder that doesn’t break the bank, the Lucky Kayak Portable Handheld Fish Finder is the best choice. It has some great features and a simple display to make things easy for you.
Lucky Kayak Portable Handheld Fish Finder Video Review
What We Think of the Lucky Kayak Portable Handheld Fish Finder
This 1.6” fish finder packs a lot of information and features into a small package. It weighs only 1.3 lbs and comes with both a neck strap and boat mount, allowing you to use it the way it best suits your needs. The main display won’t indicate your movement speed or water temperature, but you’ll be able to keep a constant eye on the depth of the water below you. The maximum detection depth is 328 ft, so if you are out in water deeper than that, you won’t get the same level of accuracy.
There are two modes of display, a demo mode, and a normal mode. You’ll use normal mode most often, as this is the one that indicates the depths of passing fish, and also shows you where there are rocks, weeds, and sand on the bottom. This fish finder is unique with its battery power source. This makes it highly portable, and with more than 5 hours of battery life on battery saver mode, you can use it for half a day without worry of it dying on you prematurely.
This is the perfect fish finder for fishing from my kayak in the summer and ice fishing in the winter. It is really easy to use, extremely portable, and pretty durable. I like that I can use it in all weather conditions, and although the display graphics aren’t great, it’s enough to tell me where the fish are and if there are any underwater hazards. Pretty happy, overall.
There are 5 levels of sensitivity to choose from, so you can sort the sizes of fish you wish to see indicated. Plus, with a backlight, changeable units, and alarms for passing fish, this little device is full of convenience. To use it, you’ll have to keep your speed below 5 mph, and that is why it is better suited to kayaks than standard boats.
Lucky Kayak Portable Handheld Fish Finder Specifications
- Dimensions: 2.7” x 1.2” x 4.8”
- Weight: 1.3 lbs
- Screen Size: 1.6”
- Maximum Depth: 328 ft
- Information on Display: Depth
- Display Modes: 2
Lucky Kayak Portable Handheld Fish Finder Pros and Cons
- Has backlight, changeable units, alarm for passing fish, and indicates weeds, rocks, and sand
- 5 levels of sensitivity to detect varying fish sizes
- Comes with a neck strap and boat mount
- Battery powered; 4.5 hours of use per charge, more if using battery saving mode
- Transducer has to be placed in the water, either free floating or attached to boat hull
- Movement speed needs to below 5mph
Our Final Opinion About the Lucky Kayak Portable Handheld Fish Finder[usrlist Quality:5 Effectiveness:4 Design:4 Price:5]
Overall, the Lucky Kayak Portable Handheld Fish Finder is one of the best affordable fish finders out there. It’s got a unique method of operation, but this can be quite beneficial for certain situations. With multiple sensitivity levels and a backlight, you can use this fish finder anywhere, any time.
Alternative Products to Consider
Humminbird 410190-1 Helix 5 Series Sonar G2 Fishfinder System Review
The Large-Screen Alternative
If you’re interested in purchasing a fish finder that is easy to read and navigate with, the Humminbird 410190-1 Helix 5 Series Sonar G2 Fishfinder System is the perfect choice for you. It has a large screen and great display graphics, ensuring both ease of use and great functionality.
Humminbird 410190-1 Helix 5 Series Sonar G2 Fishfinder System Video Review
What We Think of the Humminbird 410190-1 Helix 5 Series Sonar G2 Fishfinder System
This Humminbird G2 system has a lot of similarities to other sonar fish finders by this company. The large 5” display screen presents you with a lot of information at once, without feeling cluttered. You can constantly monitor the water temperature, current depth beneath the boat, and your current speed. In addition to this, you have a fish profile of the waters around you displayed with bright colours and a high degree of accuracy.
There are two display modes, a max and a clear mode. Clear mode keeps the screen neat and tidy, whereas max mode shows you absolutely everything that is going on under the water; it may look a bit busy, but once you are familiar with reading it, you’ll appreciate the level of detail that is provided to you. The maximum detection depth is 600 ft, so while this model isn’t quite as powerful as some others, it still offers you a diverse range of waters to investigate.
I am glad I purchased this Humminbird model instead of the alternatives I was considering. The larger screen size is more of a benefit than I realized, and the two display modes are perfect for different situations; sometimes I just want a general overview of what’s going on under the boat, and other times I’m looking for a lot more information. This fish finder does everything I need it to.
The base map built in to all Humminbird fish finders indicates the locations of marinas, buoys, and other navigational tools. The more you use this device, the more you’ll be able to build the map, since the AutoChart Live feature allows you to track your fishing spots in real time. You’ll always be able to return prosperous areas with ease and accuracy since the GPS technology is true to within 2.5 metres.
Humminbird 410190-1 Helix 5 Series Sonar G2 Fishfinder System Specifications
- Dimensions: 1.1” x 7.6” x 4.3”
- Weight: 2.6 lbs
- Screen Size: 5”
- Maximum Depth: 600 ft
- Information on Display: Speed, depth, water temperature
- Display Modes: 2
Humminbird 410190-1 Helix 5 Series Sonar G2 Fishfinder System Pros and Cons
- Base map built in indicates locations of all navigational landmarks
- AutoChart Live tracks fishing spots in real time
- Powerful search technology and great display visuals
- Fairly expensive
Our Final Opinion About the Humminbird 410190-1 Helix 5 Series Sonar G2 Fishfinder System[usrlist Quality:5 Effectiveness:5 Design:5 Price:4]
Overall, the Humminbird 410190-1 Helix 5 Series Sonar G2 Fishfinder System is one designed for a great user experience. It has a great base map built in, and with the ability to add to it in real time, you will be sure to make this device your own in no time. It may be a bit pricey, but the quality is worth it.
LUCKYLAKER FF718LiC-T Fish Finder with Dual Frequency Review
The Portable Alternative
If you’re looking for a fish finder that you can easily take anywhere, the LUCKYLAKER FF718LiC-T Fish Finder with Dual Frequency is the perfect choice. It is lightweight, compact, and will float on water if dropped. Plus, you will be treated to a high level of versatility and user friendliness.
LUCKYLAKER FF718LiC-T Fish Finder with Dual Frequency Video Review
What We Think of The LUCKYLAKER FF718LiC-T Fish Finder with Dual Frequency
With a weight of less than half a pound and some of the smallest dimensions of any fish finder, there is no model more portable than this one. Since the handheld unit is fully waterproof and it will float if dropped, you can have the confidence to take it anywhere and be sure that it will come home with you in fully functioning piece. The screen size measures 2.8” on the diagonal, which is quite sufficient for a handheld model like this one.
On the main display you will have constant access to the current depth and temperature of the water beneath you. The maximum detection depth is only 328 ft, so it won’t be able to provide a full fish profile or bottom contouring for every body of water. However, for shallower areas, you will be able to reap the benefits of these great features.
I have done so much with this fish finder in the few months that I’ve had it. I’ve used it for fishing off my dock, off my kayak, and even off a friend’s boat. The larger boat wasn’t the best since we have to cast it in, but it did the job. It is really easy to use and the display is the perfect combination of detailed information without the clutter. Highly recommend this model!
This rechargeable unit allows you to keep an eye on the battery life every time you glance at the screen, and you’ll also be able to identify the sensitivity level. With 5 levels to choose from, you will always be able to adjust your search preferences for every unique situation. There is only one display mode, but since it provides you with all of the information you need, there really isn’t a need for multiple modes.
LUCKYLAKER FF718LiC-T Fish Finder with Dual Frequency Specifications
- Dimensions: 4.9” x 2.8” x 1.2”
- Weight: 0.4 lbs
- Screen Size: 2.8”
- Maximum Depth: 328 ft
- Information on Display: Depth and water temperature
- Display Modes: 1
LUCKYLAKER FF718LiC-T Fish Finder with Dual Frequency Pros and Cons
- Can track fish and bottom contour
- Rechargeable and highly portable
- 5 levels of sensitivity
- Handheld unit is waterproof and will float if dropped
- Designed for ice and kayak fishing only
- Transducer has to be placed in the water
Our Final Opinion About the LUCKYLAKER FF718LiC-T Fish Finder with Dual Frequency[usrlist Quality:5 Effectiveness:4 Design:5 Price:5]
Overall, the LUCKYLAKER FF718LiC-T Fish Finder with Dual Frequency is one of out favorite handheld models. The unit is waterproof and highly durable, and it can be used in many different environments, including ice fishing. You don’t get the best depth capability, but its portability is unbeatable.
Deeper ITGAM0301 PRO Smart Portable Sonar Review
The Smart Alternative
If you’re in the market for a fish finder that is unique, and more intelligent than any other model on the market, the Deeper ITGAM0301 PRO Smart Portable Sonar is the ideal choice. It has some of the best technology built into it, and it can be adapted to every fishing style in every season.
What We Think of the Deeper ITGAM0301 PRO Smart Portable Sonar
This Deeper fish finder is truly one of the most innovative and interesting devices out there. It floats on top of the water and produces its own hotspot Wi-Fi signal. You can connect your own phone or tablet to that signal and receive all of the information it has to offer you. You’ll always be able to view the time, depth, water temperature, and display mode. This battery powered unit can be taken anywhere, and the battery life is quite extensive.
There are three display modes you can choose from depending on what type of fishing you are doing. Your options are shore fishing, kayak fishing, and ice fishing. Each mode will have unique features to give you all of the relevant information you’ll need while enjoying your excursion. With a max depth of only 260 ft, this is one of the more limited models on the market, but the profiles you’ll receive of more shallow areas will astound you.
I had my concerns about buying a fish finder this unique, instead of a standard boat mount with its own display. However, this is now the best fish finder I’ve used in my 30 years on the water. Its performance is great, it floats easily and never gets in my way, and I love that I can sync it to my own devices and use my phone’s GPS to mark hotspots I want to return to later. Perfect device.
This portable device can indicate fish locations and depths, structures, and even vegetation underneath the surface, allowing you to plan your course and fishing spots according to the environment. You can use your phone’s GPS capabilities to mark ice fishing spots and create depth maps as you troll in a kayak. Truly, this device just gets smarter the more you use it.
Deeper ITGAM0301 PRO Smart Portable Sonar Specifications
- Dimensions: 5.9” x 5.3” x 2.9”
- Weight: 0.8 lbs
- Screen Size: Your phone/tablet size
- Maximum Depth: 260 ft
- Information on Display: Time, water temperature, depth, fishing mode
- Display Modes: 3
Deeper ITGAM0301 PRO Smart Portable Sonar Pros and Cons
- Battery powered and connects to a phone/tablet using Wi-Fi (produces its own signal)
- Display modes can be adjusted for ice fishing, shore fishing, and kayak fishing
- GPS ice hole marking and can make depth maps as you troll in your kayak
- Can indicate fish location, structures, and vegetation under the water
- Shallow depth reader
Our Final Opinion About the Deeper ITGAM0301 PRO Smart Portable Sonar[usrlist Quality:5 Effectiveness:5 Design:5 Price:5]
Overall, the Deeper ITGAM0301 PRO Smart Portable Sonar is one of the most unique and innovative models currently available. While its depth range isn’t ideal, the connection type, portability, and versatile display make it suited to every kind of fisher.
Garmin 010-01870-00 Striker Plus 4 Fish Finder Review
The Convenient Alternative
Anyone looking for a fish finder that abounds with convenience would benefit from a closer look at the Garmin 010-01870-00 Striker Plus 4 Fish Finder. It’s portable, has a great battery life, and is affordable too. Plus, it’s got some of the best sonar technology that gives you great performance.
Garmin 010-01870-00 Striker Plus 4 Fish Finder Video Review
What We Think of The Garmin 010-01870-00 Striker Plus 4 Fish Finder
This Striker Plus 4 fish finder weighs less than one pound, and it is designed to be quite compact. The 4.3” screen size dominates the face of this handheld unit, so you can be sure to have great visibility of everything going on underneath the water’s surface. The current depth of water underneath the boat and the water temperature will always be visible to you on the main screen while in fish finding mode.
The fish finding mode uses CHIRP sonar to detect and track fish as they move about in the surrounding water. This technology is incredibly accurate and it allows for great distinction between different groups and individuals. The GPS mode can help you mark and navigate to waypoints, create routes, and monitor the boat’s speed. If you want to receive all of this information at once, you can use split screen mode.
I am really quite happy with this fish finder. Although the reader can’t search beyond 250 ft, the information I get is more than enough for me. I tend to take my canoe in shallower areas anyway, so this doesn’t really concern me. I like that I can choose between a number of display modes, and the GPS function works wonderfully. I don’t have any complaints, really.
The maximum depth this fish finder can read to is only 250 ft, so this is one of the more limited models on the market. However, its affordability makes up for this insufficiency a little bit. This is a battery powered model, so it offers some of the best portability out there. With a 3 day battery life, you can plan an entire multi-day trip without worrying about a charger.
Garmin 010-01870-00 Striker Plus 4 Fish Finder Specifications
- Dimensions: 3.9” x 1.8” x 6.9”
- Weight: 0.7 lbs
- Screen Size: 4.3”
- Maximum Depth: 250 ft
- Information on Display: Depth and water temperature
- Display Modes: 3
Garmin 010-01870-00 Striker Plus 4 Fish Finder Pros and Cons
- 3 days of battery life per charge
- Built-in GPS lets you mark waypoints, create routes and view boat’s speed
- Can choose GPS mode, fish finder mode (CHIRP sonar), or split screen
- Quite affordable
- Limited depth readability
Our Final Opinion About the Garmin 010-01870-00 Striker Plus 4 Fish Finder[usrlist Quality:5 Effectiveness:5 Design:5 Price:5]
Overall, the Garmin 010-01870-00 Striker Plus 4 Fish Finder is a device that is best suited to the convenience-seekers out there. It may not be able to give you the deepest readings, but the information you do get back will be accurate. Its affordability and rechargeability make it one of the best for convenience.
Why Should You Trust Us?
All our recommendations on The Good Choice are the result of many weeks or months of research, comparisons, analyses of user’s ratings and if need be, interviews with experts and scientists. You will quickly notice that the products we suggest here are not the most expensive or the most trendy: they are those that will best perform their daily tasks, passing all security, reliability and efficiency tests while having an appealing price-quality ratio for everyone.
In the end, the products we recommend are those we would have wanted to buy, or those we will choose for our friends and family.
Things to Know Before Buying a Fish Finder
Benefits of a Fish Finder
Fish finders are incredibly useful tools for fishing and general navigation on the water. Whether you are interested in keeping track of fish patterns while out on a local lake, or you need a more sophisticated piece of technology to help you meet your fishing quotas, a fish finder can be the perfect addition to your boat. They will nearly all come with mounting hardware, so you can attach them to your boat in a place that is most convenient for you. Simple models can offer basic information about the fish density and depth, as well as water temperature, but more complex models can do a lot more for you. Their tracking ability can take pictures of the lake bottoms, track fish for long distances, allow you to mark hotspots and favorite locations, and more. The GPS technology can help you locate important locations and hazards to avoid, as well as help you navigate unfamiliar waters, just like a car GPS can help you find your way around unfamiliar roadways. No matter what needs you have of a fish finder, there is a model on the market that can supply the information you need.
How to Properly Choose Your Fish Finder
Fish finders can vary in price quite substantially. The cheapest models can be as low as $60, and these models will have more limitations on visual display capabilities and search strength. These models will therefore be the best for less serious fishers. Pro level fishers would benefit from the models average in price, between $150 and $300. These offer great performance without breaking the bank. The most expensive models can run close to $700, and while the quality is unmatched, these are best suited to only the most avid fishers out there.
- Maximum Depth.
The maximum depth of the fish finder will affect what bodies of water you can successfully navigate. Some devices will have different depths for saltwater vs fresh water, and others will only have one standard depth. The ideal models will be around 1200 feet in fresh water, but the cheaper models may not even reach 1/3 of that. There is a lot that goes on underneath the water, so if you’re interested in a completely accurate display, a fish finder with a deeper max depth will be ideal for you.
- Display Modes.
Some fish finders will have various display modes. These can be different GPS tracking capabilities, or levels of information provided about the goings-on underneath the surface. Simpler models may only have a single display mode with limited visuals, but more sophisticated machines can show you a lot more. It’s up to you to decide on the level of customizability you’re looking for, because there is a device for every preference.
- Information on Display.
Every fish finder will display different information on the screen. Some will always present your speed, water temperature, and depth. Some may only have one or two of those pieces of information. Other models can offer a lot more information depending on the display mode, such as GPS coordinates and bearing, time and distance to a target destination, and more. In general, the more information you can receive, the more expensive the fish finder will be.
- GPS Capabilities.
GPS capabilities will be one of the most diverse and coveted features in a fish finder. Some models will be very basic, only displaying a base map with important locations. Some models will have no GPS features at all. Others still will be quite versatile, and offer site marking in a memory function, as well as travel directions. The more sophistication to this technology, the higher the price will be, so you’ll have to find a balance that suits your needs and your budget.
- Screen Size.
The screen size can be very important for a fish finder’s ability to present information. If you have simple needs and just want to keep track of general fish patterns and your speed, a small screen size will be amply sufficient. If you’re interested in more intricate visuals, tracking, and more, a larger screen size will definitely be of use to you. They can vary in size from less than 2 inches to more than 5, so you’ll certainly be able to find one that suits you.
Warranty coverage on a fish finder isn’t always easy to find, but even a standard one-year plan can help save you the cost of fixing or replacing a damaged fish finder. Especially if you end up spending several hundred dollars on one of these devices, you’ll sure be glad you spent the extra time finding a model that offered warranty protection.
We do our best to provide you with a comparative guide of fish finders allowing you to choose the best product possible. If we are missing information or new models, do not hesitate to leave a comment below or to send us a message.