The Garmin echoMAP 44dv is quite similar to the other echoMAP models of fish finders that Garmin has come out with for 2016.
That being said, I still strongly believe that Garmin provides some of the best value and bang for buck with their fish finders.
Lets dive into the rest of this Garmin echoMAP 44dv review!
Compact and Easy to Install
Like all Garmin fish finders, the echoMAP 44dv is incredibly easy to install. The wires all run right into the mount, and the screen unit can simply snap on and off. This may seem like a trivial feature at first, but when it comes to winterizing your boat and storing it, you’ll be thankful that removing your precious electronics is so easy.
Besides, if you were to say mount this unit on a kayak that you use for both leisure and fishing, it would be very easy to remove the unit when just going out for a paddle instead of lugging around your equipment everywhere.
If you have a larger boat with a trolling motor, then Garmin also makes compatible trolling motor mounted transducers, making installation even simpler.
If your trolling motor is a Motorguide or Minn Kota that has a transducer built in, you can use that transducer with this unit.
Multiple SONAR Options
The Garmin EchoMAP 44DV has multiple SONAR frequencies you can use – along with traditional SONAR, you also have access to DownVu(that’s what the DV stands for). DownVu SONAR shows you a very clear picture of the underwater world.
Ideally, you’d want to use both DownVu and traditional SONAR in conjunction, since DownVu is very effective at showing you structure and large schools of baitfish, whereas traditional SONAR helps you spot larger gamefish.
With the traditional SONAR, you can look as deep as 2000 feet in freshwater and 1000 feet in saltwater.
The Garmin EchoMap 44dv also has CHIRP sonar, which uses multiple frequency waves to get the clearest picture possible. CHIRP is the next step in SONAR and was originally only available at a very high cost. Thanks to technology become cheaper and more easily available, however, it’s becoming a more and more common feature.
The pros everywhere maintain that once you use CHIRP, there is no going back. The clarity and definition(even though it is traditional SONAR and not 3D SONAR) is unmatched.
Small Screen Size
The smaller screen size can either be an advantage or a disadvantage, depending on your needs. If you need something compact, then this is the way to go.
You may end up having to squint a little to see everything, and you’ll definitely be forgoing some of the detail you could see on a larger screen, but hey, the small screen size also means less of an impact on your wallet.
What’s really cool about the EchoMap 44dv is that it has Garmin’s awesome BlueChart G2 maps pre-loaded – combined with the powerful GPS sensor, you can actually use this tiny little unit as a full-blown chartplotter. Not that it is recommended, but it’s still very handy to have, especially on a small boat or kayak.
The BlueChart G2 maps contain basic charts, tidal stations, currents, depth contours, and IALA symbols.
What’s in the box
- echoMAP 44dv with U.S. BlueChart® g2
- Power/data cable
- Quick-release mount
- GT20-TM transducer (4-pin)
- Transom mount
- Trolling motor mount