Similar to the units of the first generation of ClearVü fish finders, the GPSMAP 741xs is one of the Garmin discontinued units. As opposed to the echoMAP units, this one offers extensive navigation features and comes pre-loaded with the LakeVü HD and BlueChart g2 charts. For reference, this is the Garmin part number 010-01102-01, the one that does not include a transducer.
Key Features and Specifications
- Display: 7″ diagonal WVGA color multi-touch display, 800H x 480V pixel resolution, with LED backlight
- Sonar: CHIRP 2D, CHIRP ClearVü
- Frequencies supported:
2D: 50/77/200 kHz
ClearVü: 260/455/800 kHz
- Max. Depth Capability: 2,000 ft – saltwater
- Transducer: Not included
- Power Draw: 12 VDC, 1.3 Amp
- Power Output: 1 kW
- GPS: 10Hz, Internal
- Charts: LakeVü HD and BlueChart g2 HD
- Routes, Waypoints, Tracks: 100; 5,000; 50,000 points (50 saved tracks).
Control unit features
As its name suggests, the Garmin GPSMAP 741xs features a 7-inch diagonal display. Just as the echoMAP 7 units, it has a pixel resolution of 800H x 480V, it’s WVGA color and has built-in LED backlight, being bright enough to provide excellent readability even in direct sunlight. It has touchscreen technology, navigation through all its functions and applications being done in a similar way to a tablet.
This unit is equipped with a new processor, approx. 60% faster than the older similar units. Thus, the scrolling through charts, or zooming in and out is done extremely fast and smooth.
The back of the unit has an impressive array of connectors. It has 12-pin and 8-pin transducer connectors, as well as NMEA 0183 and NMEA 2000 connectors. It’s equipped with an Ethernet port, ports for external GPS and just about any Garmin RADAR module. It also has one BNC port for video connections. And finally, it features two microSD card slots for charts and data cards.
On top of all these, the GPSMAP 741xs also has wireless and Bluetooth connectivity. It has a built-in wireless transceiver which allows you to sync it with your iPad or iPhone via the BlueChart Mobile app, in order to transfer data. Its Bluetooth wireless technology also allows you to control various media devices such as an iPod playing music through your boat’s sound system.
Last but not least, the box includes two types of mounts for this Garmin unit, a bail mount, and a flush mount kit. A protective cover is also included.
Fish finding features
To begin with, the Garmin GPSMAP 741xs integrates two types of sonar, HD-ID (or traditional) and ClearVü. It also supports SideVü imaging sonar, but in order to use SideVü, it requires the GCV10 external sonar module. Both HD-ID and ClearVü types of sonar are CHIRP enhanced. Therefore, if you opt for a CHIRP transducer, the unit can provide images of higher definition, more detail, less clutter and a better separation between targets.
The unit is capable of various fixed frequencies, including 50/77/200 kHz for HD-ID, and 260/455/800 kHz for ClearVü. Depending on the transducer used, the sonar pulse can be modulated on a frequency interval, for better detail. For example, if paired with the GT23M-TM transducer, it can use a frequency range of 80-160 kHz for HD-ID (differently put, Mid-Band CHIRP), and 245-275 kHz / 445-465 kHz for ClearVü.
The sonar coverage and depth capability also depend on the selected transducer. As a general idea, the highest depth capability that can be achieved by this unit is 2,000 ft (609 m) for saltwater, and 2,300 ft (701 m) for freshwater, needless to say, with a low-frequency capable transducer, such as the Airmar B175L (40-60 kHz Low-Band CHIRP, 1kW). For ClearVü, the depth capabilities range between 500-1,000 ft., evidently depending on the transducer as well.
The beam widths that you can expect, depending on the selected transducer, are between 12° – 45° for HD-ID and between 30°-50° for ClearVü. In general, most transducers will use conical beams for classic sonar, and thin-shaped beams for ClearVü.
The list of transducers that can work with this unit is fairly long. As a general idea, it requires a transducer with an 8-pin connector. Some of the most used transducers with this unit are: Garmin GT23M-TM, Garmin GT23M-TH, Garmin GT22HW-TM, Garmin GT21-TM, Garmin GT21-TH, Garmin GT20-TM, Airmar TM150M, Airmar P66, Airmar B175L, or the classic non-CHIRP models, Garmin Dual Beam 010-10249-40, and Airmar P319.
The Garmin GPSMAP 741xs offers several useful fish finding functions, among which we can count Fish Symbols, A-Scope, Bottom Lock, Temperature Graph, Sonar Recording, Sonar Rewind, Depth Alarm, Fish Alarm, etc.
The Fish Symbols function replaces the fish arches or the suspended targets, with fish symbols. It’s usable only with the 2D sonar, and also displays the depth of each fish symbol. Evidently some of the fish symbols may not actually be fish, but still, this function is great to use if you don’t like the classic 2D sonar view.
A-Scope is a vertical flasher view, which is typically attached to the 2D sonar view. It displays the information caught by the most recent sonar echo. It can be useful if you want to know exactly when the sonar beam hits a fish or a group of fish. Bottom Lock is a function that allows the sonar image to maintain a specified distance from the bottom, focusing directly on the bottom and the water in that selected depth range. It’s a function great to use if you’re looking for fish that are feeding on the bottom.
When it comes to Sonar Recording and Sonar Rewind, these functions require the unit to have a blank microSD card inserted in one of its slots. As a general idea, 15 min. of recording will take approx. 200 MB on the card. The sonar recordings can also be played on a PC via the HomePort free application.
The Garmin GPSMAP 741xs offers quite an impressive array of navigation features and capabilities. To begin with, it’s equipped with a 10 Hz high-sensitivity internal GPS receiver, through which the unit can also calculate the speed of your boat. It can refresh your position and heading up to 10 times per second. Just as the echoMAP 7 units, such as the Garmin echoMAP CHIRP 73cv, this one can unit can save up to 5,000 waypoints, and 100 routes. It also has a trail recording function, allowing you to save 50,000 track points and up to 50 tracks. Evidently, you can convert tracks into routes, add waypoints to them and retrace them.
In terms of charts, the unit comes pre-loaded with two chart bundles, the U.S. LakeVü HD and BlueChart g2. The LakeVü charts are an updated version, covering more than 45,000 U.S. lakes, reservoirs, and rivers showing their depth contours along with various other markers such as bridges, marinas, camping spots, etc. Evidently, these are charts for freshwater fishing.
The BlueChart g2 are charts for off-shore fishing, covering the U.S. coastal waters and the Bahamas. These charts offer information and navigational aids including spot soundings, depth contours up to 1-foot, tides, currents, harbors, and marinas. They also offer the Depth Range Shading function which allows you to color code up to 10 depth ranges in order to view them at a glance.
When it comes to charts, this unit’s capabilities do not stop here. It can also use the LakeVü HD Ultra and BlueChart g2 Vision, which are premium charts that offer much more information. For example, the BlueChart g2 Vision offers two types of 3D chart views including Marinerseye View and Fisheye View. They also include high-resolution satellite imagery. Conversely, the LakeVü HD Ultra offer 3D lake imagery, dynamic lake levels, and custom depth shading. Both Ultra and Vision charts have the Auto Guidance function, which calculates a suggested safe route or path to follow, based on your boat’s dimensions.
The QuickDraw Contours function is also available with this unit. This function uses the sonar depth measurements to add depth contours to your maps. In other words, if a certain body of water isn’t covered in detail by the charts of your unit, you can re-chart that particular body of water, and get the most up-to-date contours.
In terms of navigation, this Garmin unit can support various external modules such as AIS and RADAR unit, and also allows you to see data from various NMEA 2000 sensors, such as engine data, wind data or live XM weather data.
- CHIRP technology offering superior clarity, target separation and target definition, for both HD-ID and ClearVü;
- Supports SideVü sonar, via the GCV™ Black Box external module;
- Dual-frequency sonar;
- Compatible with a wide selection of transducers from Garmin and Airmar, including 1 kW models;
- Sonar recording and rewind;
- Fast and accurate 10 Hz internal GPS;
- Preloaded with the U.S. LakeVü HD and BlueChart g2 coastal charts;
- Quickdraw Contours function, for the possibility to add contours and customize your maps;
- Multiple Depth Range Shading;
- Compatible with the Garmin premium charts, such as BlueChart g2 Vision or LakeVü HD Ultra;
- Tide tables information;
- Data graphs and information from other NMEA 2000 sensors;
- Supports AIS, RADAR and DSC-capable VHF radio;
- Garmin Meteor™ Audio System compatible;
- Supports FUSION-Link™ compatible radios;
- Wide array of connectors including NMEA 0183, NMEA 2000, 8-pin and 12-pin for transducers, Ethernet port, external GPS and RADAR ports, and video BNC port;
- Touchscreen display;
- Fast processor (60% faster than the previous versions);
- Dual microSD card reader;
- Wireless connectivity (Wi-Fi networking and Bluetooth);
- Bail and flush mounts included;
- Unit cover included;
- Easy to install;
- Straightforward, comprehensive operation.
- Transducer is not included;
- Manual may not apply directly to this unit but to all the 500 and 700 GPSMAP units.
The Garmin GPSMAP 741xs is a fish finder and chartplotter unit, equipped with CHIRP HD-ID and ClearVü sonar and an extra fast 10 Hz internal GPS. It comes preloaded with the BlueChart g2 coastal charts and the LakeVü charts for the U.S., and also has the QuickDraw Contours function. It offers an impressive array of connectivity possibilities, including Wi-Fi networking and Bluetooth. These being said, it’s an excellent unit for freshwater and saltwater fishing, and for fishing boats of all sizes, except maybe small kayaks and inflatable boats, to which would be a bit of an overkill.
This unit does not include a transducer, though. A wide array of transducers are compatible with it, some available for prices under $80. But even without the transducer, due to the impressive array of features and capabilities, this Garmin unit offers excellent value for the price.