Lowrance Hook 7 Review: Is This The Right Fish Finder For You?

I love to fish, but I’m the first to admit that the hobby can get tedious during those long stretches when the fish aren’t biting. That’s why I decided to invest in a fish finder, so I could move on from the less-promising spots and keep a record of the areas where the fish were usually hanging out. This Lowrance Hook 7 review was one of the results of my experiment.

Things to Consider Before Buying a Lowrance Hook 7 Fish Finder

Why should you consider investing in a fish finder in the first place? The reasons might surprise you. To name just a few:

  • Aid in locating fish—the sonar technology in fish finders will tell you if there are any fish nearby, making it easier for you to decide where to cast.
  • Underwater environment visibility—these units will also provide you with images of the contouring and structures beneath the surface of the water.
  • GPS technology—some of the more advanced units have built-in GPS systems, making navigation easier.
  • Mapping software—some models allow you to find and/or recreate detailed maps of your favorite spots.
  • Water depth and temperature readouts—you can keep a close eye on the conditions to help you determine whether or not they’re favorable for your chosen prey.

It should be noted that the Lowrance Hook 7 is a large and sturdy fish finder, best suited for use on larger crafts. If you’re looking for a portable or handheld unit, this is probably not the one for you. Similarly, if you routinely fish from a kayak or canoe, you might be better off limiting your search to smaller models. Also note that the price point on the Lowrance Hook 7 is on the higher side, so it should be considered only if you have a generous budget in mind.

Lowrance Hook 7 Review

The Lowrance Hook 7 is a down-imaging fish finder with a built-in GPS antenna and maps that provide detail on more than 3,000 U.S. lakes, as well as some coastal contouring. The screen measures 7 inches on the diagonal, and the unit weights in at 3 pounds. An updated version, featuring a TripleShot transducer (with a side-scanning option and CHIRP sonar for fish arch resolution), expanded map coverage, and an SD card slot for storage is also available.

Pros:

  • Easy to install
  • User-friendly design
  • Built-in GPS system
  • Mapping feature included

Cons:

  • High price point
  • Might be too bulky for smaller watercraft
  • Depth readout is not always accurate

Features & Benefits of the Lowrance Hook 7

Now that we’ve covered the basics, let’s take a closer look at the particulars to help determine whether or not this unit can hold its own in a crowded market.

Affordability

The Lowrance Hook 7 is not a budget option, but the standard option is more affordable than the upgraded model, even if it lacks some of the more advanced technology. You can also save some dollars off the price if you’re willing to downgrade to a smaller screen size (see below for more information). Also note that if you register the product with Lowrance right away, you’ll receive a one-year warranty, which helps to mitigate the higher price tag.

Screen Size and Display

This unit has one of the bigger screens you’ll find at seven inches across, making the Hook 7 a good fit for larger boats or people with less-than-stellar vision. The graphics are basic, with a narrow color palette and low- to medium resolution. The upgraded version features split-screen technology and slightly better graphics, along with the other improvements mentioned above.

Transducer

The transducer is the active component of every fish finder—it’s the device responsible for sending out sonar waves, reading and interpreting the obstructions that they meet, and displaying the results on your screen. While the transducer on the standard Hook 7 is capable of down-imaging only, the Hook2 7 also offers a side-scanning option and CHIRP sonar for greater versatility.

If you don’t understand the difference between down-imaging and side-imaging, here’s a brief overview: Down-imaging transducers direct the sonar waves directly below your boat, and are best suited for deep-water environments. By contrast, a side-imaging transducer provides a more detailed picture, allows you to scan more of the environment in a shorter period of time, and works well in shallow water. It should also be noted that side-imaging units are usually more expensive, and are only effective when traveling at low speed. This is why the basic Hook 7 model is a better fit for larger crafts and those who prefer deep-water fishing.

Mounting System

The transducer for the Lowrance Hook 7 can be mounted any of four ways: on the transom, inside the hull, on the trolling motor, or through a scupper hole. This versatility earns it high marks in this category, even if the unit itself is on the bulkier side.

Depth Readout

This unit does provide accurate depth readouts, but only at slower speeds. If the craft is traveling over 25 mph, the readout becomes more erratic, and the images themselves are prone to blurring. Since the specifications of the Hook 7 give the impression that the unit should do well in deep water, this is a troubling quirk.

Temperature Readout

The Lowrance Hook 7 has a water temperature range of -40 degrees to 185 degrees Fahrenheit, making the unit suitable for ice fishing as well. The temperature readout can be viewed on the sonar page, and is usually accurate as far as we can tell, although there might be a variation of a few degrees in especially warm weather.

GPS System

Both the basic and updated versions of the Hook 7 feature GPS technology, with the Hook2 7 offering advanced settings that allow you to create waypoints, in addition to aiding with navigation.

Mapping Feature

This model offers a better-than-average mapping system, with over 3,000 U.S. lakes included in the database (the upgraded version has over 4,000). The Micro SD card slot allows you to upload information to the unit’s database, so you can easily find and track your favorite spots the next time you head out.

Additional Features

While the standard Hook 7 is fairly basic, there are upgrades available that will bring the GPS and mapping technology nearly up to par with the Hook2 7. As for the later model itself, the split screens offer a myriad of useful extras—they can provide readouts of the air temperature and boat speed, as well as the other readouts listed above.

On the Road with the Lowrance Hook 7

Does the Lowrance Hook 7 really work as well as advertised, or was my personal experience just a fluke? For answers, I scoured the Web for testimonials from other consumers who’d given this model a try.

Customer response to the unit was generally positive—it was considered easy to use, with clear readouts even in bright sunlight, and accurate displays that helped users land more fish on a regular basis. As I mentioned earlier, there were some complaints about the accuracy of the depth readouts at higher speeds; aside from that, any major issues seemed to result from a specific flaw in an individual unit, not the model as a whole.

Alternatives

If you’ve considered all the information and decided that the Lowrance Hook 7 is not the right fish finder for you, what might you consider instead? Here’s a list of several comparable models that might help you find what you’re looking for, complete with side-by-side matchups for each pertinent category.

Garmin Striker 4

Like the Hook 7, this unit is available in both basic and upgraded models, with a range of sizes and options to choose from. It’s also more affordable than the Lowrance model, with a user-friendly interface and similar GPS and mapping features.

  • Affordability—Garmin
  • Screen Size and Display—Lowrance
  • Transducer—Tie
  • Mounting System—Lowrance
  • Depth Readout—Garmin
  • Temperature Readout—Lowrance
  • GPS System—Garmin
  • Mapping Feature—Lowrance
  • Additional Features—Garmin

If you’re looking for a more affordable option and don’t mind a smaller unit, then check out what the Garmin Striker 4 has to offer.

Humminbird Helix 7

This model offers the same generous screen size as the Lowrance Hook 7, but its resolution is crisper and the resulting images more impressive. Like the Hook 7, only down-imaging is available with the standard model.

  • Affordability—Tie
  • Screen Size and Display—Tie
  • Transducer—Tie
  • Mounting System—Lowrance
  • Depth Readout—Humminbird
  • Temperature Readout—Humminbird
  • GPS System—Lowrance
  • Mapping Feature—Lowrance
  • Additional Features—Humminbird 

This is a tough one to call—the products have more similarities than differences—but if you think you’d take advantage of the additional video features that the Humminbird Helix 7 has to offer, then it could be worth a closer look.

Lucky Portable Fish Finder

This is a handheld unit, smaller and lighter than the Lowrance but much more affordable. The Lucky might be a good choice if you fish primarily from a dock, or need a portable device that you can take on your kayak or small craft.

  • Affordability—Lucky
  • Screen Size and Display—Lowrance
  • Transducer—Lowrance
  • Mounting System—Lowrance
  • Depth Readout—Lucky
  • Temperature Readout—Lowrance
  • GPS System—Lowrance
  • Mapping Feature—Lowrance
  • Additional Features—Lucky

The versatility and maneuverability of the Lucky handheld device are what set it apart from the competition (in addition to the low price). If this sounds appealing to you, then feel free to invest in one of these nifty gadgets.

In Conclusion

The Lowrance Hook 7 delivers in all the ways you might expect from a fish finder of this size. It offers down-imaging with decent resolution and accurate readouts (unless you’re traveling at high speeds, in which case you’re probably not casting a line anyway), as well as impressive GPS and mapping technology. It’s also simple to install, with instructions that are just as easily followed. Do you think the Hook 7 could be the right fit for your fishing lifestyle? If so, click here to learn more about the product and begin the next step of your journey.

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