The Garmin EchoMap 74SV is a fish finder that is geared towards power users or those that are aspiring to become power users. If you have a decent sized boat, you can do a lot with this fish finder, maybe even open your own fishing charter business! Nevertheless, if you are a serious angler or someone looking to get competitive, this fish finder is a great way to up your game.
Sporting a huge 7 inch diagonal display(a little smaller than an iPad mini), this fish finder delivers 3 different kinds of SONAR as well as Garmin’s world-renowned chartplotting capabilities. The SONAR is powered by 500W, which can get you plenty of depth. The two frequencies for regular SONAR are 77 kHz for wider range and greater depth, and the 200 kHz SONAR is for narrower scanning with greater clarity.
The other two SONARs are DownVu and SideVu, which are high-resolution images of what’s directly beneath your boat and what’s to the side of your boat. This is really, really neat because you are getting all three technologies in one clean package. The Lowrance HDS series has this too, but you’d have to get the display plus a special unit for down and side imaging which would set you back another $500. The Garmin in this case is a LOT of value for your money.
Side scanning SONAR shows you a crisp view of whatever is below your boat upto 750 feet on each side, which is ridiculously awesome. Because GPS is built in, you can actually record the SONAR readings coordinated with GPS readings and play it all back on the free HomePort™ planning software.
This is an excellent way to scope out good fishing areas before a tournament or to keep good areas in mind if you are running a charter.
The integrated BlueChart® g2 maps are one of the best in the industry, an they cover the entire United States coastline and the US side of the Great Lakes. This makes the 74SV an excellent choice for saltwater anglers.
The BlueChart G2 has everything that’s available on NOAA charts, tidal stations, currents, depth contours, IALA symbols, and fishing charts. You can zoom in and out with ease, and can even define what is a safe depth for you and have it show on the chart in a different color.
You have two options to mount the transducer – either on the transom or on your trolling motor, whichever you prefer – both installation kits are included in the box. Even the display’s mount is a quick disconnect tilting mount, so you can just snap it on and off whenever you like – this is especially useful when you are storing the boat.
The EchoMap SV74 is also a guidance system. You can simply enter the location you wish to go to, and the Garmin will search through the charts and plot a safe path for you that avoids shallow water, low bridges, and other obstacles. If you have a Garmin autopilot already installed on your boat, you can hook it up to this unit and it’ll do everything for you.
At the end of the day, this unit is a high performance fish finder/chartplotter that will help you take your fishing and skippering to the next level.