Fish Finder : Lowrance Hook 3X Review & Buying Guide

Looking for a fish finder to make your fishing sessions more efficient? You might get a bit lost in all the technical details out there, but the good news is you can easily get accustomed to conducting your own research.

Certain models are obviously better than others, yet it is up to you to identify your necessities and make an informed decision.

Lowrance Hook 3x Sonar

Lowrance Hook-3X Sonar is currently one of the top rated fish finders on the market. It is almost impossible to find a negative Lowrance Hook 3X review and it is easy to tell why.

4.7/5.0

Lowrance hook 3x review

What We Liked:

  • Affordable price
  • Resolution: 320 x 240 with 256 color TFT
  • 11 adjustable levels of LED backlight
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    2 frequencies - 455kHz & 800 kHz
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    Scanning depth up to 300 feet
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    Waterproof

What We Disliked:

  • No internet connectivity
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    No microSD card slot
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    No built-in GPS

Featuring a detailed Lowrance Hook 3X manual and a good warranty, this fish finder is among the most cost efficient options for both amateurs and advanced fishermen. It provides an excellent value for money and can easily compete against more reputable models.

Control

Based on any Lowrance Hook 3X review out there, getting used to this sonar is fairly simple. Sure, you do have a Lowrance Hook 3X how to use a guide in the package, but buttons and controls are straightforward anyway.

The screen measures 3.5 inches in diagonal. You can find larger units in commerce, but you do not want a heavy set that you can barely install.

The maximum resolution is 320x240 and it comes with a 256 color TFT scheme. It has an LED backlight going over 11 levels. In other words, you can also fish at night or in bad weather conditions. It is also visible without too much effort in direct sunlight.

Transducer

The transducer is ideal for new and more experienced fishermen. It is not suitable for professional or commercial uses though.

It carries the 000-10260-001 quality standards and brings in a transom mount. You do not have to hold it or buy a separate kit, as everything is in the package.

The sonar only carries the DownScan capabilities. It will operate at two different frequencies – 455kHz or 800kHz. The DSI skimmer can easily handle both frequencies for accurate results. Images resulted on the screen will be clear, but also sharp and detailed.

If you feel overwhelmed with all these, be sure to double check the Lowrance Hook 3X transducer installation guide upfront.

Scanning

The transducer in this unit comes with fan shaped beans. You will also find transducers with conical beams in commerce – they are mostly used for classic 2D sonars. The beam dealing with 800kHz is narrower than the one used in 455kHz scanning.

What does it mean? Simple! Use 800kHz scanning if you fish in shallow waters. The clarity will be much better and accuracy will be flawless.

On the other hand, if you fish in deep lakes or saltwater, you should opt for 455kHz scanning. It simply allows a wider coverage. There are no split screen options, so you cannot scan at both frequencies simultaneously.

Sonar

Based on the scanning frequencies and the capabilities of DownScan imaging, the Hook 3X fish finder will easily provide detailed maps of depths up to 300 feet. Simply put, it will work wonders in freshwater, yet it can be successfully used for saltwater too if you only go for the shallows.

It is worth noting that the transducer features a 20 foot cable. It has a built-in temperature sensor too, so the display will give you the top water temperature as well.

Results

It is essential to know what results look like in order to determine the right location to fish. Some modern solars display fish like arches. This one is different. If you see bright dots on the screen, that is where you have to fish.

The scanning speed is quite impressive and will maintain its accuracy even if you speed up to 55MPH. Most specialists recommend going way slower than that if you do not want to miss anything. In fact, they suggest not more than 6MPH. At this speed, literally nothing can escape your scans.

Attachments

Lowrance has never tried to oversell random bells and whistles that skyrocket the price without bringing in any major benefits. Instead, you have the basics – what else do you need?

The Hook 3X model has a bracket included in the package. Its main role is to allow angle adjustment for fish finding. Keep adjusting it occasionally for a more detailed view of the target. However, the sonar also adjusts by itself for more efficiency.

Moreover, the bracket allows removing the fish finder when not in use. It is a matter of security.

Extras

Every Lowrance Hook 3X review will claim on the benefits of the waterproof design. The fish finder is IPX7 waterproof. It can take water splashes and rain. It might resist immersions for a few seconds too, yet it is not recommended.

Saltwater can cause lots of damage due to its corrosive nature, so try to keep it dry in such conditions.

The Pros and Cons

PROS

  • Good scanning results based on its compact size
  • Full backlight control over 11 levels to handle low lighting conditions
  • Advanced Signal Process system makes the fish finder as automatic as it can
  • Easy to use and detailed manual of instructions
  • Affordable, yet accurate and detailed

CONS

  • No internet connectivity or microSD slot
  • GPS not available, so it must be purchased separately

What to Look for in a Fish Finder?

Transducer

The transducer is one of the main parts in such a device. Its main role is to send and receive waves.

When underwater, waves hit various things before bouncing back, so they basically transmit data to the transducer. All these signals underline the imaging.

A powerful transducer provides sharper details, however at the same time you should also pay attention to the mount or material.

Frequency

The frequency is not to be overlooked either. Transducers normally feature 50kHz, 83kHz, 192kHz or 200kHz frequencies. They are given by the cone angles.

If the waters are a bit shallow, opt for high frequencies. If you are up for commercial uses, opt for a smaller frequency. As a general rule of thumb, a high frequency will send out more waves, so the image is more detailed.

Power

Last, but not least, do not overlook the power. A high wattage model will offer deep readings in no time.

Lower wattage models are more appropriate for shallow waters. On the other hand, if you normally fish in saltwater or deep lakes, you should get as much power as you can.

Check out our verdicts on the best fish finders on the market, with loads of impressive features.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Will the tilting bracket fit on my boat?

Yes, the tilting bracket swivels and is highly adjustable. Its main role is to ensure a proper mount on literally any boat. Adjust it accordingly and install it within seconds only.


2. Where should I place the sonar?

The back of the boat is ideal if you want a good range for distance fishing. The bracket gives you some flexibility, so it is impossible to fail in finding a good position.


3. What should I buy for more efficiency?

Everything you need for a good fishing experience is in the package. You need the fish finder, as well as the possibility to mount it somewhere. All these parts are included.

FINAL VERDICT

Lowrance Hook 3X Sonar

As a short final conclusion from our Lowrance Hook 3X review, this device is certainly exceeding most user's expectation. Over 75% of all buyers find it good or exceptional. Based on testing it ourselves and clearing the nonsense complaints, we are going to rate it at 4.7 out of 5 stars.

Given the price tag, it is among the most cost efficient options on the market. Make sure it is suitable to your fishing experience and expectations before making a final decision though.

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