In this post, we’re going to compare the Lowrance HOOK-5x 000-12653-001 and the Raymarine Dragonfly 5DVS E70306. These two are fish finder only units; they do not have any navigation features, such as charts or GPS. However, they do have dual channel sonar, traditional and for structure scanning.
Lowrance HOOK-5x – Short Description
The Lowrance fishfinder HOOK-5x is basically the HOOK-5 unit, but without the GPS and charts functions. That’s what the “x” in its name stands for. It’s a 5-inch unit, featuring a color display, with a pixel matrix of 480 x 480. This unit does not have a microSD card reader as the HOOK-5 unit. It does support NMEA 0183 though.
Since we’re addressing the HOOK-5x 000-12653-001, this Lowrance fishfinder system includes the HDI Skimmer transducer, which is capable of 83/200/455/800 kHz. The unit is also capable of scanning at 50 kHz, but for that, it requires a different transducer.
There are two types of sonar available, 2D traditional view and DownScan. For 2D, the system can use CHIRP technology, modulating the sonar pulse over a range of frequencies in order to provide a better target separation and clearer images. Since the transducer can use 83/200 kHz for 2D, the CHIRP range is Mid and High.
For DownScan, the system can also use two frequencies, 455/800 kHz, but without CHIRP. However, the unit offers the DownScan Overlay function which allows you to overlay the DownScan Imaging onto the Broadband Sounder in order to obtain a view that separates the fish from structure very clearly.
The unit makes available quite a few other standard sonar functions. Among them… Read Full Review.
Raymarine Dragonfly 5DVS – Short Description
The Raymarine Dragonfly 5DVS E70306 is a 5-inch unit, with a color display, a pixel matrix of 800 x 480, and an aspect ratio of 15:9. It’s not a touchscreen unit; its operation is done via the keypad at the bottom of the display.
The mount supplied with the unit is a pivot-ball type, also featuring the quick disconnection system and the unified cable. The unit’s operating voltage range is 10.8 V DC to 15.6 V DC, so a 12V-7AMP battery should do just fine.
In terms of sonar, the unit offers CHIRP 2D and CHIRP DownVision. However, as opposed to other units, it only uses a single beam for each type of sonar. The operating frequency intervals for its CHIRP sonar are 170-230 kHz for 2D and 320-380 kHz for DownVision.
The unit comes with the CPT-DVS transducer, which has a transom mount and integrates a water temperature sensor. It can back both of the unit’s frequencies, so basically, you can use all the unit’s sonar capabilities with the included transducer.
This unit cannot record sonar, does not have a microSD card or SD card reader, nor it has NMEA connectivity… Read Full Review.
Sonar. The Lowrance HOOK-5x unit offers dual beam frequencies for both its 2D CHIRP sonar and DownScan, while the Dragonfly 5DVS only uses a single beam for each type of sonar.
Operating frequencies. The Raymarine unit uses a CHIRP frequency interval of 170-230 kHz (High CHIRP) for its 2D sonar, while the Lowrance unit uses CHIRP intervals around 83 kHz and 200 kHz, in other words, Mid and High CHIRP (modulation range is not specified). For DownScan the HOOK-5x uses 455/800 kHz while the Dragonfly unit uses a CHIRP frequency interval between 320-380 kHz.
Transducer beam angles. The HDI Skimmer supplied with the HOOK-5x unit uses beams of 20° / 60° for its 2D sonar and 57°/38° beams for DownScan. The CPT-DVS transducer that comes with the Dragonfly 5DVS unit uses a 25° beam for 2D and a 60° for DownVision.
Depth capability. The Raymarine Dragonfly 5DVS can scan depths up to 600/900 ft (183/275 m), while the Lowrance HOOK-5x can reach depths of 1,000 ft (305 m) and 300 ft (91 m).
DownScan Overlay. This is a feature specific to Lowrance fish finders. It gives you the possibility to blend the 2D CHIRP sonar with the DownScan sonar for a better analysis of the underwater environment.
TrackBack. This is also a function specific to the Lowrance units. It basically allows you to scroll back through the sonar in order to review a certain spot. The Raymarine unit doesn’t have such a feature.
Unit mount. The Lowrance fish finder includes a classic tilt-and-swivel mount, while the Raymarine fish finder comes with a pivot-ball mount which also features a quick disconnection system.
Connectors. The Lowrance unit has two connectors, one for power and NMEA, the other for the transducer. For the Raymarine unit, there’s a unified cable for both power and transducer, and the unit has only one port that matches the connector of this cable.
Display. The Lowrance HOOK-5x fish finder features a 480H x 480V display, 5″ in diagonal, color with LED backlight. The Raymarine Dragonfly 5DVS also has a 5″ color display, LED-backlit. But as opposed to the HOOK unit, it offers an 800H x 480V pixel resolution.
Side by Side Comparison
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Final Conclusions & Pricing
Both units are sonar only, without the possibility to install charts or a GPS system. However, both units have CHIRP sonar and down scanning sonar for structures. In terms of features, the Lowrance unit is a bit better as it offers DownScan Overlay, TrackBack, plus it can use two frequencies for both its 2D and DownScan. On the other hand, the Dragonfly unit features a richer pixel display, images being slightly sharper. Depending on the retailer, these fish finders have a similar price, between $300-$350.