Let me start by saying I am about as far removed from a “tech-head” as you can get. I have trouble working out which remote control operates the TV, let alone what it does. Having said that, I do put in a bit of extra effort in learning technology if it means my chances of finding and catching fish are increased. This new piece of amazing electronic equipment from the Lowrance stable is well worth the minimal research effort required to successfully operate the unit to its capabilities.
The Elite-7 Ti comprises a seven-inch touchscreen, 10Hz GPS capability including a Navionics Australia and New Zealand card, TotalScan sonar, CHIRP sonar, side scan, Bluetooth connectivity, mid/high TotalScan all-in-one transducer, TrackBack view and access to GoFree shop and Controller app.
With all these features and a fair bit more, it may sound a bit over the top for the average angler, but believe me, the basic operation and multitude of screen displays and functions are far more easily used than it sounds. By very simple and well defined on-screen touch operating symbols, the unit can quickly go from a full display of GPS/chart plotter to a side scan view, down scan view with the CHIRP or TotalScan operation, dashboard operation showing engine information and/or various split screen displays of all these amazing functions. Up to four separate panels can be displayed at any one time per page.
I have used a Lowrance Elite-5 DSI for a few years now with great success and satisfaction but can honestly say I was a bit daunted by this new unit. I had the new Elite-7 Ti fitted to the rear of my Quintrex 440 and the older 5 DSI unit moved to the front of the boat, with the transducer attached to the leg of my electric motor. That done, I set about reading the operator’s manual and running the unit a few times along the way. Although the unit is relatively simple to operate and the manual has clear, understandable instructions, I found the YouTube information relating to Lowrance operation and equipment absolutely invaluable. Everyone has methods of learning but for me, to be in the boat, on the water and hooked up to YouTube whilst experimenting made a massive difference. A Lowrance YouTube series with sections for the Elite-7 Ti – including “Tips & Tricks”, “Hardware & Features”, “Sonar Settings”, “Structurescan Set-up” and “GPS Set-up” – is essential watching for anyone who owns one of these units. Had I not done so, I would have struggled to understand the TrackBack and screenshot recall functions, along with many of the touchscreen “draggable” capabilities that now make the unit more user-friendly.
In the limited, cold and wintry opportunities I have had to experiment with the Elite-7 Ti, I have looked around my home lake at Eildon for a bit of trout trolling and searching for redfin around structure. I can honestly say the couple of expeditions I have had with the new unit would not have been as successful without it. Days where, back at the boat ramp, the story would’ve been, “Nah mate, not a touch”, have been upgraded to, “Yeah, not bad, a nice feed of reddies at least”. With all the customisable functions, I now look at the screen and it’s not “maybe” but “definitely” fish I am casting at. The difference it will make once the weather starts to improve – and the natives start to become more active or when I start to chase a few perch or Aussie bass – is an exciting proposition.
The ultra-clear, photo-like imagery offered left, right and beneath your boat with the TotalScan function is outstanding. The CHIRP function, the GPS and the Bluetooth compatibility all go towards the quality and ease of use of this unit. I have often relied on my old sounder whilst searching and fishing for perch, Australian bass and bream, but this new 7 Ti now gives me the ability to seek out fish like my much favoured Murray cod and other species that hang tightly in or under structure. The images are so good that fish can be identified against all other structure, and waypoints can be marked with a simple touch and stored for future reference.
Whether you want to find fish more easily, or intend to compete in serious tournaments, this new Lowrance Elite-7 Ti unit will seriously change the way you operate and the success you have.
*Although I have not used all the options, this unit is capable of full on-screen control with MotorGuide Xi5 trolling motors, SmartSteer interface and Power-Pole C-Monster integration.
Clear, fine display
Ease of use
Ability to customise preferred display settings
TrackBack and screenshot function
Transducer is fairly large – extra care might be warranted in heavy structure or drifting