Humminbird HELIX 9 CHIRP GPS G2N
If you’re on a budget, but would still like a 9″ CHIRP fishfinder unit that also integrates navigation functions, the HELIX 9 CHIRP GPS G2N (part number 410070-1) might be one to put on your list. It costs approx. $500 less than the HELIX 9 CHIRP MEGA SI GPS G2N, but lacks the MEGA Side Imaging and Down Imaging sonar. On the other hand, it has the CHIRP enhanced DualBeam Plus sonar and basically has the same navigation functions.
Just like the other Humminbird fish finders in the HELIX series, this one comes with a transducer. Also, as opposed to the HELIX 7 CHIRP GPS G2N, it has the ContourXD charts and features a microSD card reader with two card slots.
Technical Details and Specifications
- Screen: 9″ diagonal, 800H x 480V pixel resolution, 16-bit color TFT, with LED backlight
- Sonar: CHIRP DualBeam Plus with SwitchFire
- Depth Capability: 1500 feet (457 m)
- Frequency and Coverage:
- 200 kHz (175-225 kHz) / 20°
- 83 kHz (75-95 kHz) / 60°
- Transducer: Transom XNT 9 20 T
- Power Output: 500 Watts (RMS)
- Power Input: 10-20V DC
- Power Draw: 1.3 Amps
- GPS: Internal
- Cartography: ContourXD
- Routes, Waypoints, Tracks: 47; 2,750; 50 (20,000 points each)
Sonar and transducer
As we’ve mentioned above, this unit only has the traditional DualBeam Plus (2D) sonar; however, as opposed to the last year’s HELIX 9 GPS, this unit has CHIRP technology. This means it can modulate the sonar pulse over a range of frequencies rather than generating a single frequency pulse. This results in images with less clutter, superior target focus, and target separation. In other words, if the sonar pulse hits a group of fish, for example, it’s more likely to see them separated, as individual targets, rather than just a big dot of color which may be mistaken for a rock, if it’s close to the bottom.
This Humminbird fish finder is capable of scanning at frequencies of 50/83/200 kHz, but with the included, XNT 9 20 T transom transducer, it can only use the 83/200 kHz frequencies. Since it has CHIRP, the pulse modulation intervals are 175-225 kHz and respectively 75-95 kHz. This transducer integrates a water temperature sensor and can detect the topwater temperature. The unit also has a temperature graph function, so you can see the temperature variation over a scanned area. This may be a useful function if you’re looking for surface currents, for example.
If equipped with an Xtreme Depth transducer, capable of 50 kHz (28-75 kHz), the system’s depth capability can reach 3,500 ft (1,066 m). However, the maximum depth capability with the included XNT 9 20 T transducer is only 1,500 (457 m).
The transducer uses conical beams with angles of 60° for 83 kHz and 20° for 200 kHz. Therefore, it’s best to use the 83 kHz (75-95 kHz) mode if you want a better coverage, and the 200 kHz (175-225 kHz) beam if you want better detail. But nonetheless, the unit’s sonar application is dual-frequency capable. In other words, you can scan by using both frequencies simultaneously, and compare the two sonar views in split screen.
This Humminbird fish finder comes with several other sonar-related functions. Its DualBeam Plus sonar has the SwitchFire function which is a quick filter function, that gives you the possibility to quickly swap between Clear Mode and Max Mode. The Clear Mode view removes most of the clutter, leaving only the strongest targets and the bottom on screen. This way, you can focus on the bigger fish targets only. Max Mode offers a view with all the sonar information that the system was able to detect, thus you will be able to see more fish arches and other targets.
Sonar Recording and Sonar Snapshot are two functions available with this unit. The unit does require a blank microSD card to save the recorded sonar feed. The sonar recording can be rewind; thus, you won’t have to turn the boat around in order to re-scan a certain area, if you want a second look.
Selective Fish ID+ is also available with this unit. This function replaces the fish arches with fish icons, making it much easier to see where the fish are. Each fish target will also have its depth close to it.
Other functions to mentions are Fish Alarm, Real Time Sonar (or A-Scope), Bottom Lock, Depth Alarm and more.
GPS, charts and other navigation functions
The unit is equipped with the Humminbird Precision GPS, which delivers quick and accurate fixes within 2.5 meters. By using the GPS data, the unit can calculate and display the speed of your boat as well. The unit’s memory can stock up to 2,750 waypoints, 47 routes, and 50 tracks, with up to 20,000 points per track.
The HELIX 410070-1 comes with the ContourXD charts which cover more than 3,000 U.S. lake maps, with depth contour lines, channels, boat accesses, markers, major roads, and interstates. The unit displayed in the table above is shown with the LakeMaster charts. The view of the ContourXD charts can be seen in the photo below.
ContourXD Combo View
The navigation functions also include several other functions, such as Drift Alarm, Man over Board, Off Course Alarm, and a Bird’s Eye, 3D view for the maps. The unit’s charts can also be upgraded. It’s actually compatible with Navionics Platinum+, Navionics+, LakeMaster Charts and SmartStrike fishing charts.
AutoChart Live is a function available with this unit as well. This application uses the information from the GPS and sonar in order to determine the depth contours of the scanned body of water. This being said, it gives you the possibility to use the most up-to-date depth contours of your lake. It does require Navionics or LakeMaster charts as base for operation. Or, you can use a ZeroLines card (not included), which is specifically designed to serve as support for AC Live, the unit’s recording possibilities will considerably increase.
Since this is a G2N unit, the AutoChart Live feature comes with two extra capabilities, these being vegetation and bottom-hardness mapping. In other words, it gives you the possibility to color code various parts of the lake or reservoir where you’re fishing, depending on the vegetation density or the structure of the bottom.
Last but not least, in terms of navigation, this Humminbird HELIX unit can support various external modules, including AIS, RADAR or i-Pilot Link.
As its name suggests, this HELIX unit features a 9″ display. Its pixel resolution isn’t higher than for the HELIX 7 unit. However, at 800 x 480, it does provide excellent clarity for the sonar and charts applications. Its display has a 16-bit color range, and LED backlight; thus, it offers excellent readability even in direct sunlight, or when fishing at night. A gimbal-type mount is included with the unit, but an in-dash mounting kit option is available as well. The box also includes a unit cover.
The unit’s waterproofing is IPX7. This means it can resist rain, snow, splashes, or in general, incidental water exposure, with no problem. It can actually withstand immersion up to 1 meter and 30 minutes in freshwater.
The unit’s navigation is standard; it’s done via the keypad on the right. It does not have cross-touch or touchscreen technology. However, it’s wireless control capable. It’s compatible with the Humminbird AS RC1 Bluetooth remote control, which features 7 dual-function keys, and gives you the possibility to control your unit from distance. Via this remote, you can mark waypoints, save a snapshot, adjust brightness, navigate through menus etc. This remote control is not included with the unit, though.
As we’ve mentioned above, the unit has a dual slot microSD card reader, which can be quite a plus as it gives you the possibility to use two microSD cards simultaneously for different applications, so you won’t have to swap them all the time. For example, you can have Navionics chip for superior mapping and a blank card for sonar recordings, waypoint backups etc. This unit features an Ethernet port and an NMEA 0183 output, also being capable of NMEA 2000.
- CHIRP DualBeam Plus Sonar;
- Powerful transducer (XNT 9 20 T), CHIRP capable and temperature capable, with transom mount;
- Depth capability up to 1,500 ft with the included transducer, great for inland fishing or off-shore fishing;
- Multiple sonar functions available, such as SwitchFire, Selective Fish ID+, Bottom Lock, Mark Structure, Real Time Sonar etc;
- Sonar Recording and Screen Snapshot functions;
- Precision GPS with MSAS, ENGONS, and WAAS enhancing;
- ContourXD charts included;
- AutoChart Live with Bottom Hardness and Vegetation features;
- Trackplotting, routes and waypoints functions;
- 800 x 480 pixel matrix, 16-bit color display, with LED backlight, providing clear images, easy to read even in direct sunlight;
- AIS, i-Pilot Link and Radar capable;
- Bluetooth wireless control capable;
- LakeMaster, Navionics, and SmartStrike capable;
- Ethernet and NMEA 2000 ready;
- IPX7 waterproof;
- MicroSD card reader (2 slots);
- Upgradeable internal software;
- Gimbal mount included;
- Fairly easy to install.
- Bluetooth remote control not included.
The Humminbird HELIX 7 CHIRP GPS G2N is a 9-inch display fish finder and chartplotter, featuring DualBeam Plus sonar, GPS, ControurXD charts, and the AC Live software, with Vegetation and Bottom Hardness functions. The unit also comes with the transom XNT 9 20 T transducer. Its internal charts may not be the best, but the good news is they’re upgradable. This unit is also opened to various other navigations and sonar options, such as i-Pilot Link, Radar AIS, or 360 Imaging sonar, with the corresponding accessories.
It’s a system great for boats of all sizes, for both salt water and fresh water. It’s considerably cheaper than the HELIX 9 units with Side Imaging and Down Imaging. Therefore, if you want to save some money on the sonar, this may be a unit to put on your list. Finally, considering that it’s a CHIRP capable unit, comes with a transducer that covers all its sonar functions, has GPS and excellent charting capabilities, we can safely say it offers a decent price/value ratio.