Peter WilkinsAuthor: Peter Wilkins
Last Updated: May, 2020

garmin striker 4

Want to catch more fish? We check out the best Garmin fish finders on the market in 2020

Garmin make a wide range of quality fish finders to suit all types of fishing and budgets. There is a unit for different experience levels as well. But what fish finder is the best? Well to answer that question you first have to assess where you fish, how you fish and how much you want to spend, then you can have a look at our Garmin fish finder reviews, to see what is suited to you.

Anyway, let’s get straight into our fish finder comparison and reviews. In our opinion, the best Garmin fish finders for 2020 are:

  1. Garmin Striker Plus 5cv with Transducer – Best fixed/mounted fish finder
  2. Garmin Striker 4 – Best budget fish finder
  3. Garmin Striker Plus 7sv – Best advanced fish finder
  4. Garmin echoMAP 54cv – Best midrange fish finder
  5. Garmin echoMAP Plus 43cv – Best small fish finder
 Brand/ModelScreensizeBeamGPSFixed/PortablePrice
Garmin Striker Plus 5cv with Transducer5" HorizontalChirp, ClearVüYesFixedCheck Price
Garmin Striker 44" HorizontalChirp, ClearVüYesFixed or PortableCheck Price
Garmin Striker Plus 7sv7" HorizontalChirp, ClearVü, SideVüYesFixedCheck Price
Garmin echoMAP 54cv5" DiagonalChirp, ClearVüYesFixedCheck Price
Garmin echoMAP Plus 43cv4.3"Chirp, ClearVüYesFixed or PortableCheck Price

Garmin Fish Finder Reviews 2020

1. Garmin Striker Plus 5cv with Transducer

MOUNTABLE/FIXED FISH FINDER

Features

  • With it’s 5″ color TFT display
  • Garmin Chirp technology
  • ClearVü scanning sonar
  • GPS

This specific model in the Striker series is one of the most popular, and for a good reason. As a welcomed addition to their stellar line of fish finders, it boasts built-in Garmin CHIRP technology alongside its unique CHIRP ClearVü scanning sonar that allows you to map out your surroundings easily. Whether you’re trying to see a school of fish, a targeted fish, the bottom of the floor, or the density of its contents, you’ll be able to easily interpret what you’re seeing and make the best logical choice. Effectively, this model takes the guesswork out of fishing.

Gone are the days of driving your boat aimlessly, sporadically casting your reel blindly and hoping for the best. The Striker Plus 5cv allows you to map out your surroundings and work from there. Another fantastic feature is its built-in Garmin Quickdraw Contours. This feature allows you to view the contours and depth of wherever you choose. It’s not just one-and-done either; their advanced software will enable you to create and store maps with one-foot contours for up to 2 million acres!

The GPS features let you save points of interest, create customized routes, and view your boat’s speed, all while giving you the peace of mind of knowing that you’re in control. It’s not too hard on the eyes either. Its backlit display makes reading in both sunlight and moonlight a breeze. With a 5-inch screen, a durable design, and ultra-user-friendly controls, this model allows you to keep tabs on your comings and goings easily – today and in the future.

2. Garmin Striker 4 with Transducer, 3.5" GPS Fishfinder with CHIRP Traditional Transducer

MOUNTABLE/FIXED FISH FINDER

Features

  • ClearVu imaging
  • Small and compact, ideal for kayaks or small boats
  • Perfect for portable kits
  • 3.5″ color screen

For something a bit less high tech and much more portable, the Garmin STRIKER series (which preceded the STRIKER Plus) has a few fantastic smaller models. One of the best ones is the STRIKER 4, which can be purchased with only the traditional CHIRP technology, or with CHIRP and the groundbreaking ClearVu imaging that the Garmin brand is known for.

The small, handheld fish finder can also easily be mounted, but its small size allows it to be much more portable than some of the STRIKER Plus series. Garmin offers a bundle in which a pouch designed specifically for Garmin fish finders can be purchased alongside the STRIKER 4. The sleek case makes it easy to transport the STRIKER 4 from place to place, from boat to boat.

The screen, though small at 3.5”, boasts clear color visuals for great tracking. With this small fish finder, anglers can also mark and return to spots where they find fish, just like with the larger STRIKER models. It also displays speed data on the screen, as well as anglers to share their data with other STRIKER models and the now-discontinued Garmin EchoMap models.

The STRIKER 4 includes a flasher, a tilt and swivel mount, and the CHIRP transducer for producing amazing results.

3. Garmin STRIKER Plus 7sv with CV52HW-TM Transducer and Protective Cover

MOUNTABLE/FIXED FISH FINDER

Features

  • 7″ color screen
  • Built-in Wi-Fi for access to ActiveCaptain app
  • Built in GPS
  • Built-in Garmin quickdraw contours mapping software
  • Amazing quality SideVu technology – see structure to the side of your boat

The STRIKER Plus series is the best of the best of the Garmin fish finders.

Their large and best-equipped model is the STRIKER Plus 7sv, featuring a 7” screen and multiple mapping and chart plotting features. It also has the ability to connect to Wi-Fi, allowing anglers to access the Garmin website and ActiveCaptain App for more features, upgrades, and more.

The LCD screen automatically adjusts to the lighting of the environment, so no matter what time of day or what location the device is in, it will set itself accordingly for the best visuals. The high definition screen makes details easy to see from anywhere on the boat, and the adjustable tilting set-up will allow anglers to fix the screen in whatever direction they desire for best access. The screen displays the water temperature and features Ultrascroll, allowing it to keep up with the targets even despite a boat’s speed.

It also boasts a highly sensitive and precise GPS, allowing anglers to accurately map and track their locations. The CHIRP sonar system also creates crystal clear images and pinpoint accuracy of the location of potential fish. The high-resolution screen coupled with the sensitive CHIRP technology also creates a perfect distinction between game fish, bait fish, and vegetation or obstacles near the boat.

The STRIKER Plus series is relatively inexpensive for all the features it comes with, and the STRIKER Plus 7sv is well worth its price tag.

4. Garmin echoMAP CHIRP 54cv with transducer

MOUNTABLE/FIXED FISH FINDER

Features

  • 5.0 inch diagonal screen size
  • CV series comes with built-in 500 W CHIRP traditional sonar and CHIRP ClearVü scanning sonar
  • Garmin quickdraw contour mapping

This particular model boasts a sleek, sophisticated, durable, and cutting-edge series of equipment that puts the angler in the driver’s seat of his or her own destiny. Just like the Striker Plus series, it holds built-in ClearVü scanning sonar that shows you much more of what lies beneath the surface of the water. This aspect can’t be overlooked, as the top-class technology allows the user to accurately map out their surroundings using high-frequency sonar. The result is crystal-clear imagery of your surroundings that will set you on the right path for the rest of your day, no matter how you look at them. Its unique CHIRP applications work with Garmin depth sounder technologies that allow the angler to take a deeper dive into the environment around them by using continuous frequencies to map the makeup of the area.

What sets this model apart is its built-in high definition mapping system of United States waters that effectively lets you know where you are and where you’re going at any given moment. Its portable design makes it a cinch to take with you, wherever you go. Between its expansive sonar abilities and its helpful transducer, it may already be a top option for any fishing guru. But the Quickdraw Contours system allows the angler to truly be in control of his or her own destiny by creating custom maps of your favorite locations. As if that wasn’t enough, the useful 5-inch screen provides straightforward navigation while the internal 5 Hz GPS regularly updates your position as you move.

5. Garmin echoMAP Plus 43cv

MOUNTABLE/FIXED FISH FINDER + PORTABLE

Features

  • 4.3” bright, sunlight-readability screen
  • Comes with a GT20 Transom Mount transducer
  • Garmin ClearVü scanning technology
  • Built-in QuickDraws Contours software
  • Comes with Navionics data and preloaded LakeVü g3 maps that cover 17,000 plus lakes and up to 1’ contours
  • 5Hz GPS Antenna

Don’t let the size of this fish finder fool you! This compact GPS combo has a great range of features to put you on the fish! It has a nice bright screen readable on the sunniest of days.

It includes both traditional CHIRP Sonar for along with Garmin’s own ClearVü scanning sonar technology for near photographic images, which will give you a competitive edge over other units on the market. The echoMap Plus 43cv comes preloaded with GPS charts for coastal US BUT a great feature of Garmin devices is the Quickdraw Contours Mapping – basically you can create your own personalized fishing maps onscreen with 1′ contours. This is great if you want to map out an area in detail. You can keep the maps to yourself or share with the Garmin community – completely up to you.

Due to it’s size this is a great unit for small boats and kayaks. Even though it’s small, it comes packed with great features and the ability to split the screen display between GPS and the ClearVu sonar is very handy. Overall for the cost this is a perfect unit.

garmin fish finder

About Garmin Fish Finders

It may be hard to imagine, but there was a time (not too long ago) when GPS technology did not exist – in any form. Before the dawn of GPS, people had to make their way around blindly, relying on their faith in a map or the advice of a gas station clerk. This went double for fishermen. With no real way to see the contents of the water beneath them, fishers were left to cast their reels and hope for the best, not knowing if they were going to catch a fish or a log—or lose the line altogether on a jagged lakebed. With Garmin, those days are over. As one of the forefathers of mainstream GPS technologies, they have been providing top-notch products to outdoorsmen and civilians all over the world, from professional fishermen to senators to construction workers, and everyone in-between.

One of their best lines of products is their fish finders, with models and sizes of all different sorts for anglers of all skill levels. Their goal is to help sportsmen strive for their passions, so their products reflect the needs of the everyday angler. And if you can add a trolling motor + a quality underwater fishing camera, you’re going to have a good time!

Where Garmin began

Garmin began with humble roots. Founders Gary Burrell and Min H. Kao—under the name ProNav—started the company in the 1980s in Lenexa, Kansas. Their first line of products sold for several thousand dollars apiece—and they were as cutting edge then as they are today. By the 1990s, they had found their first major client, the United States Army—not a bad start. With this major catch on their side, they quickly grew into the household name they are today.

Since the beginning, Garmin has always sought to deliver products that make customers’ lives as easy as possible, from GPS services for cars that plug right into the dashboard, to state-of-the-art fish finders that give fishermen the best possible chance at a catch. Today, they mostly focus on improving the lives of the outdoorsman. In the fishing world, that means better fish finders and Garmin sounders. Whether you’re a novice or a professional fisherman, chances are you’ve had your fair share of exposure to these industry-leading pieces of technology. Today, they’re even making strides to become industry leaders in wearable GPS technologies.

It’s safe to say they’re making their mark, with Forbes ranking them at number five on their list of America’s Best Large Employers of 2019. This didn’t happen overnight. They got there by sticking to their commitment to bring the best possible services to their customers. All this was accomplished while treating their customers with respect during their own personal journeys – no matter what they were using their products for. By providing top service and products, they have quickly become a name to be reckoned with in the maritime industry.

Throughout the industry, hobbyists sing the praises of their fish finders. No matter what kind of fishing you plan on doing, there is a model that can fit your specific set of needs. It doesn’t take any training either, with their intuitive programs and easy-to-use screens, the fish finder will be out of the box and on the boat in no time. With many different styles and colors, you’ll be able to find an option that not only fits your unique set of needs and skill-level but one that fits your sense of style as well. At the end of the day, their main objective is to help anglers get out on the water, doing what they love most. Luckily, it’s never been easier.

Making quality fish finders since 1980

When it comes to Garmin’s selection of fish finders, there’s plenty of options to choose from. Some are equipped with GPS, while other models don’t really have a use for it. Instead, these models opt to use spread spectrum technologies to identify the area. Today, their most popular models are from the Garmin Striker series—enough so their other lines have been discontinued. You can still buy them from third parties, but direct from Garmin, it’s just the Striker and Striker Plus lines. Each option has its own unique set of advantages, and each fits into a different price range. There are also several different variations of each model.

Nowadays, with the company boasting more than 13,000 associates in 60 offices around the world, it’s essential to become familiar with some of their most famous and popular products. By bringing GPS, fishfinder, and maritime navigation services to fishers all over the world, they are doing the best they can to make your life easier.

The Garmin Striker Series

There’s a reason Garmin choose to reduce their fishfinder lineup to the Striker line alone. This popular line of fish finders comes fully installed with built-in GPS to help anglers get to where they’re going quicker than ever before. Models are available in various sizes ranging from 4- to 9-inches.

Their CHIRP sonar and CHIRP scanning sonar capabilities are the best that modern science has to offer. You’ll be able to not only take a thorough look at your exact location and surroundings, but you can mark the spots to return later as a sort of personal road map.

It doesn’t just stop there, either. With the Garmin Striker series by your side, you’ll be able to mark specific boat ramps and docks so you can easily navigate your way home once you’re finished reeling in your dream catch. All that with prices starting at just over $100—there’s little not to love about this product line. It not hard to see why Garmin chooses to simplify things and only sell Striker Series fish finders—which is not to say their older options, such as the echoMAP, are anything less than excellent. Garmin is a name you can trust.

The Garmin STRIKER and STRIKER Plus series both feature some fantastic products and technology from the Garmin brand. With ClearVu and SideVu technology, these are some of the best fish finders and produce some of the best imaging around, and the portability of most of the products is also a major bonus, with some real stand-outs in the portable fish finder category. These are perfect for when you want to take your polarized sunglasses, a decent fishing kayak or a smaller boat with a good trolling motor, and just disappear for the day. They even have some of the best ice fishing fish finders you can find.

About The Author

Peter Wilkins

Peter WilkinsWhen I’m not out fishing trying to land my next pb, you can find me writing about fishing, or reviewing the latest in fishing gear. Hopefully, our articles will help you make an informed decision on your next fishing tackle purchase, and ideally catch more fish!

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