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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm looking to replace an old sonar unit and was wondering if the Garmin 178c would be a good replacement. I'd like to keep the cost around or below 500. Currently I have a garmin handheld GPS. Do any of you have any suggestions?
Gery
 

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I have have the 178C and have been using it for two years. It works great. I bought the blue chart maps option too - which I would NOT do again as they don't help you off shore and they aren't very accurate inshore - most the time it shows me running over marsh when I'm in green channel or parts of the ICW. The unit it's self though is solid and works well. It has all the features you would expect and is easy to use.
 

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I had Humminbird electronics on my boat. I ran two units, front and back. I don't remember the models as I am sure that they are long outdated by now. I had no problems with Humminbird. I used them for more than 10 years and they were still working perfectly when I sold the boat.
 

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I bougth a Lowrance 520 a couple of months ago and I have been totally pleased with it. Like you, I was looking to spend around $500 and I wanted to be sure that I got the maxumum bang for the buck. The 520 sells for $650 but for me I found some features that made it worth the extra money.

First I talked with many fellow anglers, reps and people that I know and the general concesus was to get as much resolution as you can afford and 480 pixels seemed to be the magic number that everyonepointed to.

The Lowrance has a 5 inch screen and for a combo unit the bigger the better. The bigger screen is particularly helpful when using the split gps/sonar screen. Which brings me to the maps.

Lowrance has their version of maps but their units also accept the Navionics maps which are considered the pinnacle in the electronics game. I bought the Nauticpath map for the coast and I was amazed at the amount of detail availble. This map shows channel markers in red and green. wrecks and reads data buoys in realtime. I found the data buoy feature pretty remarkable since it gives you speed and direction of the current tide.

My unit has an external antenna but I plan to eventually install this unit on a CC with T-top. However, the 522 is the same unit with an internal antenns. Lowranet is feature available with most of their units which allows you to expand your system to include, additional speed/temp senors, fuel consumptions mpnitors, and radar.

The GPS is Waas enabled and the entire is upgradable through updates on Lowrnace's website.

There are a lot of good units on the market and Garmin is certainly one of the better ones. After everything was said and done I honestly feel as this Lowrance unit will be the only unit that I will ever need to own. But who knows what 08 will bring in gadgets.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Backlash, it does help and if I can find a great deal maybe on e-bay I would certainly go for the bigger screen. I'm not in a big hurry so I'll do some shopping around. My old unit still functions but I thought it would be nice to upgrade. Thanks to all for your replies.
 
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