While Humminbird introduced its 360 Imaging sonar product at the Bassmaster Classic in Shreveport, Louisiana, yesterday, I have been assured this cutting-edge, recreational technology will work in saltwater too.
The full press release is pasted below, but in brief, the product acts like an upside-down periscope. The Transducer Deployment System bolts to a boat's transom or jack plate and lowers a transducer into the water. It rotates and pings a full 360 degrees around the boat. Anglers can see 150 feet in every direction, including ahead.
360 Imaging is not yet in production and its specifications are not finalized, but I am hopeful that the unit might also read to depths of 150 feet.
The system is similar to pricey commercial searchlight sonar products but on a recreational scale. 360 Imaging ($1,999 MSRP) won't ship until at least late August, and it will function as an accessory to current Humminbird Side-Imaging-equipped models that are Ethernet-capable.
Look for more details in the coming months on sportfishingmag.com and in Sport Fishing's New Products section.
More from Humminbird:
Humminbird®'s New 360 Imaging Designed to Give Anglers the Edge
"Images Are Like Watching Underwater Radar"
EUFAULA, Ala. (Feb., 2012) - Securing its lead in marine sonar technology, Humminbird® is launching an exclusive sonar accessory that will give anglers detailed 360 degree views.
Humminbird's 360 Imaging™ provides a complete around-the-boat, underwater image with the same sharp detail anglers have come to know with Side Imaging® technology. With a single sweep, 360 Imaging has the ability to cover a 300-foot diameter circle (70,685 square feet).
"Think of the advantage a tournament angler will have being able to see what's in front of the boat without spooking the fish," said Jeff Kolodzinski, brand manager, Humminbird. "Also, for the first time ever, an angler can have their boat in a stationary position and receive updated underwater images from around the entire boat. They could even see bait balls or fish swimming by."
Anglers have numerous options when viewing 360 Imaging. They can view the entire circle or break it down in segments. For instance, they can select just to see what's in front, back or either side. Split screen viewing is also available so the image can be displayed with a chart or traditional SwitchFire™ Sonar.
"We are taking a giant leap forward with the most state-of-the-art sonar technology on the market," said Kolodzinski. "For competitive anglers especially, getting the best image possible of fish location is critical. With 360 Imaging, anglers now have a whole new world opened up for them. Anglers have been asking for this kind of technology for years and now they finally have it."
The 360 Imaging accessory includes a Transducer Deployment System (TDS) that attaches to the boat transom or jackplate. TDS lowers the transducer below the bottom of the boat and outboard to ensure an unobstructed underwater view. For the sharpest images, 360 Imaging can be used when stationary or trolling up to 7 miles per hour.
This sonar accessory is exclusively compatible with current Humminbird Side Imaging-equipped models that are Ethernet-capable. The suggested retail price of Humminbird's 360 Imaging is $1,999. Availability is expected later this summer.
Here are some other key features of Humminbird's 360 Imaging accessory:
o Ability to mark waypoints anywhere on the 360 Imaging screen
o An audio alert is given when the boat nears a waypoint within casting range
o Capable of recording video and screen captures
o Eight color palettes
o Four sonar speed settings
o Specific area can be selected and zoomed in on
For more information visit humminbird.com, contact Humminbird, 678 Humminbird Lane, Eufaula, AL 36027, or call 800-633-1468.