Humminbird SOLIX 15 CHIRP GPS
The SOLIX 15 CHIRP GPS is one of the biggest fish finder and chartplotter units from Humminbird for 2017. As its name suggests, it’s a 15″ unit (15.4″ actually). It doesn’t have Side Imaging or Down Imaging, but does offer 2D CHIRP sonar, with depth scanning possibilities up to 5,000 ft. Evidently, it’s also a versatile navigation unit, featuring a powerful GPS and charts from both Navionics and Humminbird.
Technical Details and Specifications
- Display: 15.4″ diagonal, color TFT with a 16-bit color range, 1280H x 800V pixel matrix, with LED backlight
- Sonar: CHIRP DualBeam Plus
- Frequency and Coverage:
83 kHz / 60°
200 kHz / 20°
- Depth Capability: 1,500 ft (457 m)
- Transducer: Transom XNT 14 20 T
- Power Output: 1,000 Watts (RMS)
- Power Input: 10.8-20 VDC
- Power Draw: 4.56 Amps
- GPS: Internal
- Charts: Navionics & Humminbird
- Routes, Waypoints, Tracks: 50; 10,000; 50
Sonar and transducer
XNT 14 20 T
Just as the SOLIX 12 CHIRP GPS, the 15-inch model comes with the XNT 14 20 T transducer. This transducer is CHIRP capable; it has a transom mount and integrates a temperature sensor. The unit itself can display the temperature of the top water column. It also has a Temperature Graph function, which shows the variation of the water temperature over a certain scanned area, function that can be useful if you’re looking for top water currents, for example.
The unit is capable of three main frequencies, 50/83/200 kHz, but with the included XNT 14 20 T transducer it can only use the 83/200 kHz. But since the transducer can support the unit’s CHIRP sonar, the sonar pulse can be modulated over a range of frequencies. For example, for 83 kHz the CHIRP modulation range is 75-95 kHz, while for the 200 kHz, it is 175-255 kHz. These being said, the unit can use High Range CHIRP and Mid Range CHIRP.
The Humminbird SOLIX 15 CHIRP GPS does not have Side Imaging and Down Imaging sonar. It’s only sonar is DualBeam Plus, offering the possibility to scan with two beams simultaneously, or even blend them together on screen. The included transducer uses two conical beams of 60° @ 83 kHz, and respectively 20° @ 200 kHz. But even though the unit doesn’t have SI or DI sonar, it can use 360 Imaging. However, this sonar technology does require the 360 Imaging transducer which is not included.
With the XNT 14 20 T transducer, the system’s depth capabilities reach 1,500 ft (457 m), offering an output of 500 Watts (RMS). However, with an optional 50 kHz transducer, you can obtain an output of 1,000 Watts and a depth capability of 3,500 ft (1,066 m). Or, with an optional CHIRP transducer and a SM3000 sonar module, the system should be able to reach depths of 5,000 ft (1,524 m).
Although this Humminbird SOLIX fish finder doesn’t have Side Imaging and Down Imaging sonar, it does offer all the standard sonar functions. Among them, we can count Selective Fish ID+, SwitchFire, Real Time Sonar, Bottom Lock, Sonar Recording, Sonar Snapshot, various alarms and more.
Needless to say, since this SOLIX 15 unit is one of the most inclusive models from Humminbird at the moment, it’s equipped with a fast and accurate internal GPS. The unit’s GPS system is capable of fixes within 2.5 meters, the boat’s position on the map being tracked smoothly, in real-time, without jumps from a point to another. The GPS fixes can be augmented by EGNOS, WAAS or MSAS. It can show the latitude and longitude for each and every point of interest or for the location of your boat. Also, it can calculate the speed of your boat.
Humminbird Charts View (SOLIX)
The unit’s memory can stock up to 10,000 waypoints, 50 routes, and 50 tracks, with up to 20,000 points per track. And finally, it can support various external modules, including AIS, HD RADAR, Autopilot or i-Pilot Link.
Navionics Charts View (SOLIX)
As we’ve mentioned above, this unit comes with two built-in chart packs, one from Humminbird and one from Navionics. There’s a clarification to be made here, though. The unit’s built-in charts don’t offer the full range of features of premium Navionics or LakeMaster charts. But still, these charts offer much more detail and information than the ContourXD included with the smaller units, such as the Humminbird HELIX 9 CHIRP GPS G2N, for example.
The unit’s Navionics charts are best used for navigation, as they included a lot of useful information such as navaids, marine, and land icons, and in general, a wide array of points of interest. On the other hand, the Humminbird charts show depth contours, depth ranges and other info that can be very useful for fishing. Evidently, you can only use one of these two chart sources at the time.
Both unit’s built-in chart sources are highly customizable. However, they’re still limited compared to premium charts. For example, a LakeMaster chart SD card offers more information with regards to lakes and inland waters than the Humminbird chart source, while a Navionics Platinum chart SD card has much more features such as aerial photographs, satellite view etc. In terms of charts, the unit is compatible with Navionics+, Navionics Platinum, LakeMaster, SmartStrike, and ChartSelect.
Last but not least, the Humminbird SOLIX 15 CHIRP GPS includes AutoChart Live. This feature uses the GPS receiver and the 2D transducer information in order to draw detailed depth contours for the lake or river where you’re fishing. It can store up to 8 hours of recording. Or, if the unit is equipped with a Zero Lines SD card, which is specifically made for AutoChart Live, the contour drawing and recording possibilities increase by a lot. Also, just like the other G2N units, the AutoChart Live feature of this particular unit has 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.
Control unit features
The Humminbird SOLIX 15 CHIRP GPS features a large, 15.4″ diagonal display, with a pixel resolution of 1280 x 800. It’s full color, with a 16-bit color range, and multiple LED backlight settings. Therefore, it offers excellent readability in direct sunlight. It also has great anti-glare properties, the images onscreen can be seen well even from sharp angles.
The unit’s display is Cross Touch, which means that it combines touchscreen technology with keypad operation. Differently put, you can navigate through its menus and use its functions either by touchscreen (as in a tablet or smartphone) or via the joystick and keypad on the right. As opposed to most tablets, the Cross Touch display uses a few extra commands, such as two finger swipe and two finger tap for several functions. For example, with a two-finger tap, you can quickly swap between 2D and 3D chart views.
This unit is also wireless control ready. It’s compatible with the Humminbird Bluetooth remote control (which is not included). This remote control features several buttons with double function (long and short press). With it, you can control many of the unit’s functions from distance, which can be very convenient especially on a larger vessel.
The SOLIX 15 unit offers superior connectivity possibilities. It features NMEA 2000, NMEA 0183 and Ethernet ports. On its front, it has a dual SD card reader (not microSD), which you can use for premium chart cards, a Zero Lines card for the AutoChart function, or a blank cards for sonar recordings, snapshots etc. Having a dual slot card reader you won’t have to swap cards all the time if you use more than one.
The box includes the classic Gimbal-type mount and a unit cover. However, there is the option of an in-dash mount (not included).
- CHIRP DualBeam Plus Sonar;
- Powerful transducer (XNT 14 20 T), CHIRP and temperature capable, with transom mount;
- Depth capability up to 1,500 ft with the included transducer, and up to 3,500 ft. with a 50 kHz transducer;
- 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, EGNOS, and WAAS enhancing;
- Built-in charts by Humminbird and Navionics;
- AutoChart Live with Bottom Hardness and Vegetation features;
- Trackplotting, routes and waypoints functions;
- Wide, 15.4″ display, with a 1280H x 800V pixel matrix, 16-bit color range, and LED backlight;
- AIS, i-Pilot Link, Autopilot and Radar capable;
- Bluetooth wireless control capable;
- LakeMaster, Navionics, and SmartStrike capable;
- NMEA 0183, NMEA 2000 and Ethernet ports;
- IPX7 waterproof;
- Dual SD card reader;
- Upgradeable internal software;
- Gimbal mount included;
- Unit cover included;
- Fairly easy to install.
- Does not support WeatherSense;
- Does not support C-MAP 4D charts;
- Bluetooth remote control not included.
The Humminbird SOLIX 15 CHIRP GPS is a versatile fish finder and chartplotter unit, offering a wide array of navigation functions, but only has DualBeam Plus sonar. It has CHIRP technology, though, so its fish detection capabilities are superior to classic units. It comes with the XNT 14 20 T transducer, which offers a scan depth range up to 1,500 ft. It’s an excellent unit for both saltwater and freshwater. Evidently, due to its size and range of features, it is not exactly a cheap unit. But the value it offers definitely stands up to the price.