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Lowrance's hi-def HDS Gen2 touch screen multifunction marine electronics displays are cutting edge.
By Capt. John N. Raguso
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I have used Lowrance sounders and chartplotters for most of my saltwater sport fishing life, which dates back to the mid-70s. They make some great stuff and it works in the real world, offering excellent utility for the investment. Lowrance has been around since 1957, helping anglers in both fresh and saltwater with breakthrough marine electronics that locate fish, chart the bottom, take you from one fishing spot to another via GPS mapping, lead you safely through a foggy night with broadband radar, and they now offer fishermen a truly unique touch screen experience for effortless control of most marine electronics functions.

The new wide-format, touchscreen HDS Gen2 Touch delivers the same award-winning benefits that made the HDS (High Definition System) one of the marine electronics industry’s top-selling multifunction display series, but also offers a bunch of exciting new features to raise the performance bar. The Gen2 Touch incorporates new, easier-to-use, wide touch screens in seven-, nine- and 12-inch sizes, with the new “foot-long” being the largest display Lowrance has ever produced to date. I can tell you from firsthand experience, there is nothing like being able to “see it all” on a big screen color LCD display and the Lowrance X104C (10.4-inch screen) that I ran on my last MarCeeJay charter boat was one of my all-time favorites. Now that this multifunction display size has been stretched to a 12-inch diagonal wide-screen format, it’s even more impressive.

The HDS Gen2 also features powerful chartplotting capabilities, seamless integration of Lowrance’s comprehensive range of add-on modular performance modules, and some of the best built-in fish-finding technologies on the market. Lowrance’s Broadband Sounder and StructureScan HD combined offer a total of four high-definition sonar channels (2D Down, 3D Down and 3D Right and 3D Left) right out of the box.

Featuring bright sunlight-viewable displays, HDS Gen2 Touch models provide the flexibility to customize and configure personal screen views with up to four panels at once, and have the added advantage of a new three-panel, vertical-page view. Effortless touchscreen operation makes panning and zooming fast, responsive, and most of all, easy to learn with its intuitive icon-driven menu. The HDS Gen2 Touch also provides five fast push-button options, allowing users to easily remain in complete control in any boating situation.
Cutting-edge fish-finding technology is built-in to every HDS Gen2 Touch fishfinder model, which feature both a built-in Broadband Sounder and StructureScan HD. Anglers will enjoy sonar and sonar imaging performance with greater sensitivity, echo clarity and underwater definition proven to find more targets. Built-in SideScan and true DownScan Imaging sonar signals offer full panoramic displays for clear picture-like views of underwater structure to the left, right and directly beneath a boat. The systems also feature Lowrance’s premier TrackBack functionality, allowing anglers to scroll-back through recorded sonar history to review and zoom-in for a closer look at bottom structure or fish targets, and pinpoint locations with a waypoint. To avoid losing important sonar data, HDS Gen2 Touch continues recording through the use of TrackBack to ensure valuable readings are not lost. All HDS Gen2 Touch fishfinder models are available with a 50/200 kHz Skimmer transducer for deep-water coastal applications, or an 83/200 kHz Skimmer option for inland fishing. The units are also compatible with Airmar in-hull or thru-hull transducers for up to 1 kW operation.

HDS Gen2 Touch displays feature a highly accurate, internal 1 Hz GPS antenna with an external 5 Hz GPS antenna option, and are pre-loaded with Insight USA inland and coastal cartography. All models include a standard SD card slot and are compatible with Lowrance Insight HD chart cards; Navionics Platinum+, HotMaps Premium and HotMaps Platinum with Freshest Data; and Fishing Hot Spots Pro. The displays provide an option to simultaneously view Lowrance and Navionics mapping data. Now with a new 3D perspective view for built-in Insight USA, and optional Insight HD and Fishing Hot Spots Pro cards, the Gen2 Touch allows control of the viewing and rotation angle for customized views of a boat’s position and surrounding landmarks. Navionics Platinum+ and Hotmaps Platinum are viewable in 3D perspective, as well. Also compatible with 3D perspective, a StructureMap display feature allows users to scan and overlay underwater StructureScan HD images directly on a chart in real-time, or users can create saved StructureMap views of their favorite boating, fishing or diving areas to display on or off the water without the aid of a computer.

Lowrance also recently announced a revolutionary personal mapping generation tool, Insight Genesis. This powerful tool uses sonar recordings from Broadband Sounder and StructureScan sonar imaging transducers connected to Lowrance HDS multifunction displays and gives anglers the ability to create custom contour maps of their favorite fishing areas. Whether mapping previously uncharted waters or ensuring surveyed water details are accurate and current, Insight Genesis delivers a new level of personal cartography, functionality and situational awareness.
Bottom line, no matter what size wide screen (7, 9, 12) fits your mission objectives, the new Lowrance HDS Gen2 Touch multifunction displays will take your fishing capabilities to the next level.