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Garmin equivalent to Raymarine A50

Old 12-22-2009, 12:10 PM
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Default Garmin equivalent to Raymarine A50

Hey guys newbie here, I was wondering if you could share some of your practical experience with me and help me pick an all in one ff/gps unit?
I have a small open boat that I use for fishing on the west coast of Vancouver island in the Barkley sounds broken island group. The problem is this area receives mucho fog so I need a small all in one ff/gps combo but a good ff is most important
I was looking at the Raymarine A50 because on spec it seems to fit the bill nicely and back in the 80s when I had my last boat they made a solid quality product however with all the negative press lately I am second guessing my choice.
I am not afraid of picking up a nice used unit but in the past I have had problems with older models screens fogging up and I would like to keep it in the $7-800 range whatever route I go but would not worry about a couple hundred more for better value.
Boy has this stuff come a long ways in 30yrs LOL
TIA

SR
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Old 12-22-2009, 12:52 PM
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You won't find a Garmin equivalent to A50D, the fishfinder part of A50D is much better than any Garmin unit.

The other unit to look at is Lowrance HDS-5, HDS also has a very good fishfinder.
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Old 12-22-2009, 02:04 PM
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The garmin 441s or the 545 series
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Old 12-22-2009, 02:59 PM
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Garmin 540 series
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Old 12-22-2009, 04:35 PM
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I have the A70. The FF is excellent. I'm down in Washington probably fishing the same stuff you are. The A50 will find stuff on the bottom and those pesky salmon that are cruising around bait balls. Don't worry about Raymarine,they will be around even if they have to restructure. I don't have any experience with garmin but I did try a lowrance BB unit and though I'm sure others would disagree the raymarine unit works better for me.
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Old 12-22-2009, 04:47 PM
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Originally Posted by abbor View Post
You won't find a Garmin equivalent to A50D, the fishfinder part of A50D is much better than any Garmin unit.

The other unit to look at is Lowrance HDS-5, HDS also has a very good fishfinder.
Thanks abbor
From what I remember Raymarine always made an awesome sounder so when I started looking around I started with them and Furuno, unfortunately the Furuno ones I have found are all way out of my price range.
I have had a couple of Lowrance units recently and they all have fogged up in the screens (x65 and global map 2000) but I bought them used so..... I guess I cant compare them to the new units but was hesitant to look at Lowrance again for that reason.
In my searching around I found a Garmin 3206 (bigger screen but older model I think ) that is in my price range but by the time I get the sounder module and transducer the price is out of reach.
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Old 12-22-2009, 05:27 PM
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trickycherry/R220Robalo
Thanks for your input I will look at those units also
I find it incredible how many model #s and series Garmin has, I'm finding it pretty daunting.

edyer
I am sure you and I have come across some of the same fish,I do a lot of catch and release so maybe even the exact same one LOL
Details around bait balls and stuff would be an incredible asset for sure.
I think if I can find a Raymarine unit for the right price I will go that route.
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Old 12-22-2009, 06:13 PM
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I just bought a place up in Clallam bay and chase fish all up and down the westside (swiftshure, Neah Bay etc) so you might be right about that.

One question, what do you guys up north call springers (chinook) in the winter time?
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Old 12-22-2009, 06:25 PM
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I dont think ther is much junk out there these days.. The Ray's Garmin's, Furunos all make great stuff. For me its person preference. I own a 22 ft center console with a Garmin 545s. I love the siplicity of the unit and has a small learning curve on how to use unit. That said , just helped friend install a Furuno Nav-Net 3D system.... Looks like it may take entire winter to learn how to use... But when you do, bet its a great machine... Me i like it simple LOL

Jimmy
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Old 12-22-2009, 06:26 PM
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edyer
Locally myself and peers just refer to them as winters or the long version would be winter spring.
Sometimes guys will call them feeders as well due to their aggressive feeding this time of year.

R220Robalo
I am pretty sure your right there I doubt I could use any machine to its fullest, sadly my microwave and many other clocks in the house flash 12:00 most of the year. It would all be a waste if I couldn't figure out how to use what I bought so was hoping for valuable input like yours on the different units.
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Old 12-22-2009, 08:37 PM
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Raymarine DF's are far better than Garmins. Do a search on here about Garmins DF's. They seem far better at finding the bottom than fish, when they don't lock-up.

The new A series units funtion identically to the darn solid C series units.

Don't count Raymarine out yet.
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Old 12-24-2009, 08:10 AM
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Well it looks like a toss-up between and A57d and the HDS 7
I have found both units at a very similar price and now I'm really undecided
The Lowrance web site does a pretty good job of selling their new FF capabilities, is it really on par with the Raymarine?

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Old 12-24-2009, 08:18 AM
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It now (December 22nd) looks like Raymarine is going to be broken up. That means it will be managed for profit rather than product. Think "Northstar."
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Old 12-24-2009, 08:22 AM
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Don't let all this brand-loyal chauvinism affect your decision. Don't buy anything until you have seen it where you fish. $1000 is a lot of money to blow on someone else's hearsay.
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Old 12-24-2009, 04:00 PM
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I have used Raymarine fishfinder and they are similar to Furuno when it comes to performance. I have both Furuno FCV-620 and HDS-5 on my boat. HDS is better in some respects and worse in other compared to a Raymarine or Furuno as a fisffinder. These three are the best fishfinders on the marked. I will recomend HDS-7 due to screen size and the data overlay option which save screen area compared to the seperate data window used by Raymarine. I also have E80 and I would say HDS is better than Raymarine as a plotter paired with a Platinum chart.
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Old 12-26-2009, 11:29 AM
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Thanks for all the responses guys, I found a pretty good deal on a Lowrance HDS
Hopefully I didn't make a mistake for the sake of saving a couple hundred bucks but time will tell?
Thx again

Sr
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Old 12-26-2009, 09:19 PM
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Cheaper isn't always better. Just remember, fore warned is fore armed.
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Old 12-29-2009, 12:47 PM
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The Garmin 545S is a great unit! My friend has one in his boat and it picks up fish just fine. Easy unit to run.
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