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Humminbird PiranhaMax 197c DI

Piranhamax 197c DI
PiranhaMax 197c Down Imaging Fish Finder From Humminbird
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Down Imaging
600' DualBeam
320' DI

Although many of the Humminbird fish finders in the PiranhaMax series have been discontinued, the series is far from being dead. In fact, at the moment this series has to offer several improved models. The 197c DI is one of them.

The main aspect to know about the Humminbird PiranhaMax 197c DI is that it does not come with any navigation features, nor is compatible with any. In other words, with this small unit, you won’t have any GPS or mapping. It’s a basic fish finder. However, the sonar includes Down Imaging technology, and the unit comes with the transducer to support it.

Features and Specifications

  • Screen: 3.5″ diagonal, color TFT with a 256 color range, 240H x 320V pixel resolution, with LED backlight
  • Sonar: Down Imaging and DualBeam
  • Depth Capability: 320 feet (97 m) for Down Imaging, 600 feet (183 m) on DualBeam
  • Frequency and Coverage: 200 kHz / 28° and 455 kHz / 16° for DualBeam, 455 kHz / 74° for Down Imaging
  • Transducer: Transom XNT 9 DI T
  • Power Output: 300 Watts (RMS)
  • Power Input: 10-20 VDC
  • Power Draw: 220 mA
  • GPS: No
  • Maps: No

The unit can only show the sonar in one frequency at the time. You can’t view both of the classic sonar returns in split screen, simultaneously, as there is no split-screen function. The 200 kHz view covers a wider area, while the 455 kHz provides a better definition of the bottom and what’s under the boat. Down Imaging can only be operated at 455 kHz, and the beam has a 74° opening.

Like most Humminbird units, this one also as the Fish ID+ function, which can be more helpful when using standard sonar. This sonar mode uses advanced signal processing to show a fish symbol on the screen, for each return that meets a certain amount of requirements to be considered a fish. Fish ID+ has 3 different sizes of fish icons: the bigger the icon, the bigger the fish.

The 197c DI PiranhaMax does not support temperature graph, nor has temperature alarm. However, the transducer does have temperature sensor built-in. As specified above, the standard transducer that comes with this unit is a transom type. However, in case you want a different type, such as a trolling motor, or thru-hull, you can call Humminbird and ask for a replacement. They will replace it for free.

What’s Best About This Unit

You get Down Imaging sonar technology for less than $200, and a 256 TFT color screen. It’s a small unit, great to have on a kayak or small bass boat. Easy to install and use, straightforward menus and navigation through the unit’s options.


No navigational features, and very few options for an upgrade. But on the other hand, those are some of the main reasons this unit comes at such an affordable price.

Final Word

The Humminbird PiranhaMax 197c DI is a great choice if you’re looking for a basic fish finder, and don’t want to spend a bundle on navigational features that you may not use at all. It’s ideal for fishing in shallow waters, but it gets the job done even for depths up to 600ft. Lastly, since it has Down Imaging, it is a much better fish finder than one which comes only with classic sonar, as it will give you the possibility to distinguish much better between structure and fish, and actually find more fish.


  1. How long is the cable for the transducer?

    • The cable of the XNT 9 DI T transducer is 20′ (6m) long.

  2. Will these units read at high speeds on the water? When i say high speed less than 40 mph??

    • It should be able to provide more or less decent readings at speeds up to 20-30 MPH. But that depends on many factors. For example, in murky waters, you’ll get a poorer performance… For the best results, trolling speed is recommended.

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