Down Imaging Vs Side Imaging Fish Finders – Fully Explained

The realistic picture of the water surface is helpful to make your fishing experience awesome and memorable. For that updated of best fish finders are coming with the latest technologies like down imaging vs side imaging to give you true-to-life pictures. 

However, both require high-frequency sonar waves to entertain you with a comprehensive image. Generally, 50/ 83/ 200 kHz is sufficient for a moral transducer to work. But the down imaging and side imaging transducers demand comparatively higher frequencies such as 455 or 800 kHz. 

Down Imaging VS Side Imaging

There are lot’s question comes in mind what is down imaging on a fish finder and side imaging sonar. Let’s explore each in detail of Down Imaging VS Side Imaging Fish Finders. 

What is Side Imaging and Down Imaging?

Both of these sonar types use frequencies much higher than standard to achieve a greater level of detail. The thin beam has even more range and can detect underwater objects that are otherwise invisible with coned off traditional equipment due as its wide coverage area gives better sensitivity.

The high frequency, thin sonar waves of Down imaging sonar produce an incredibly detailed “picture” beneath the vessel. These are what enable you to take a snapshot in 3D and see everything from underwater mountains all the way down to where your boat actually is!

Side imaging sonar can be used for a number of different purposes. Some boats have the option to use several beams, each going out farther than the last and making up what is called “the net.”

These units also allow you maximum range on an area ahead or behind your vessel as well so that everything will show in vivid detail when navigating through uncharted waters.

Sonar types come with a variety of names, from DownVU to SideScan and SI DV.

1. Down Imaging 

To find fish in deep water, down scan images work tremendously. They help you to identify the fish swimming vertically. This technology gives you a vivid structure of what is exactly under your boat. 

down imaging

Down imaging vs sonar is like conventional sonar, it moves from right to left representing the latest information on the right of the screen. Fortunately, you can use this as an all-in-one tool by collaborating with side imaging and switch fire to give you a more enhanced picture of the water surface to catch more fish.  

This is basically designed to give you the life-like picture of what is under your vessel making it easy for you to weed beds, rocks, and other things. Moreover, it also informs you how far your boat is. 

What makes it more popular among fishermen is its ability to make a clear difference between the fish and the bunch of tree limbs or seaweeds. So, you can catch fish with confidence, saving your time. 

Interestingly, this is capable of producing vivid and clear images even at the high speed of boats which is missing inside imaging scanners.

It is widely popular among fishing lovers to catch small fish such as bass and panfish because of the easy to use interface and low price.

Like every other gadget, it has some flaws also. It is not suitable to provide you with horizontal information and gives low-quality images.

2. Side Imaging   

If you stuck in how to read side imaging? Here it is, the designed Side imaging sonar is to give you a horizontal view of both sides under your boat.

Side imaging works from the top to bottom while displaying current information at the top pushing older information down. 

side imaging

To ensure broad coverage across the water body, the side imaging sonar features a razor-thin beam. They are more like photos without bothering light and dark lights.

It allows you to see more natural structures, wreckage, and schools of baitfish taking your fishing experience to the next level. 

Amazingly it is capable of displaying shadows of the objects to make you understand the height and shape of the objects. 

Most importantly, they cover both directions at a time and scans large areas of water, and gives you a high-quality image of the water surface as compared to a down imaging scanner.

Therefore, anglers turn to side imaging when moving in shallow water and can side imaging find fish easily in skin-deep bays and creeks. 

Talking about the down scan vs sidescan of this technology, they are a little pricey because of the premium features. They do not display the image of what is under the boat.

Moreover, they the provide best fish finder for small boats, and also they give optimal performance when the boat is running slow in order to give you a proper image. 

Many people wonder what the difference is between Down Imaging and Side Imaging. With Down Imaging, you are looking at the ground from directly overhead. With Side Imaging, you are viewing it from one side or another. The two methods have different effects on your data; choose the best one for your needs!

Is One “Better” Than The Other?

The two most popular options for finding fish are the side imaging vs down imaging units. They both work differently, with pros and cons to consider when choosing which one is right for your needs.

The best way in my opinion would be something like a “dual scan” combo package from brands such as Garmin Humminbird or Lowrance HDS; this will give you an extra definitive view that’s not available on its own!

“Chirp” is a word commonly used in the fishing world, referring both to 2D sonar fish finders and active search modes. It’s a continuous flow of sound waves sent into the water from the unit that helps you locate just about anything under there including animals!

To decide which one is right for you, it all comes down to where and how often do I fish there. If the type of angler spends most his/her time fishing in shallow rivers the downscan won’t be very helpful because he or she will already have an idea what’s going on with fish without even using a DownScan!

The boat is great for exploring areas that are underwater but shallow. You’ll spend more time looking around and less worried about getting into trouble because the water isn’t all the way up to your thighs!

If ice fishing is your game, then a Fish Finder will be the most popular type of fish finder because you’ll want to read water directly beneath where you plan on drilling.

Side-imaging won’t do any good and even if they could work it would give unclear images that are difficult for determining what kind of fish might live in those depths so stick with handheld sonar instead!


What fish finder has down and Side Imaging?

Garmin’s “DownVü” system is a leading fishfinder manufacturer that uses the term ‘down imaging’. The Humminbird company, however does not use this terminology. Instead they refer to their systems as side scan and down scan respectively.

Side imaging vs. down imaging for trolling? 

If you spend most of your days on the water with a troll rod, then it only makes sense that when fishing at slow speeds in one direction there would be benefits from having an imaging side-viewing fish finder.

The perfect choice for this type of situation allows users to see images not just on their trolling path but also where they are heading next so as not waste time looking elsewhere!

Should I use side imaging or down imaging on a kayak? 

The best kayak fish finder really depends on how you fish. If your fishing is deep, or if there are a lot of obstacles in the water then side imaging will help but it’s more expensive than standard topwater style units and not as reliable with shallow waters such as backwater ponds where many fishermen spend their time.

Wrapping Up:

When it comes to choosing between down imaging and side imaging, the decision is a tough one. Both technologies have their strengths and weaknesses but they’re both worth considering for your next fishing trip.

We hope that this article has helped you understand what these two fish finders offer and how they differ from each other.

If you want help deciding which of these two options would be best for your needs or if you need advice on any other aspects of fishing, we can happily provide guidance at no cost to our customers!

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