Straight out of the box the new Lowrance Elite 9 ti feels and looks very familiar to me. I’ve always used Lowrance products, and the Elite ti seems to follow in the footsteps of its more expensive HDS siblings. It looks, functions and has a similar layout I am comfortable with straight away.
Of course the Elite ti’s finish, instructions and packaging are all excellent as you would expect from Lowrance, clearly giving all the information, you need for installation, operation and warranty.
Full specifications for the Elite ti units can be found here on the Lowrance website.
|Elite 9 ti
|9″/ 228.6 mm (16:9)
|800 x 480
|(50/200 or 83/200 kHz) + 455/800 kHz
|GPS and Sonar overlay
|12 W (0.9 A @ 13 vDC)
|1 microSD slot
• High resolution display
• Chirp sonar
• Structure scan (totalscan), downscan
• Built in Wireless
• Quick release bracket
• Boat integration and system control
Instead of discuss every feature that is listed above, I’ve decided to discuss a few of my favourite features from Elite ti unit.
While downscan and sidescan has been around for a while, there is still a lot of people who don’t have it or have never used it. All I can say is you are definitely missing out! The main 2 main benefits I get from using Totalscan are, fish mark confirmation, and being able to see out the sides of the boat using sidescan.
What I mean by fish mark confirmation is that traditional sonar gives arches back from almost anything in the water and sometimes it can be very hard to tell the difference between a fish and a bit of weed or structure etc. Running downscan in parallel with the sonar you can see exactly what the sounder return is, no guessing anymore.
Sidescan allows me to see schools of fish and bait out to the side of the boat. Things that you would normally miss as they may miss the downward facing sonar or downscan cone.
I’m not going to be able explain CHIRP sonar better than the Lowrance guys, so this exert is direct from the Lowrance website.
“CHIRP sonar is cutting edge echosounder technology. Unlike the single frequency of the Broadband Sounder technology, CHIRP continuously sweeps a spectrum of frequencies. Sweeping frequencies makes two improvements to the sonar image:
• Better target separation- Because CHIRP uses a range of frequencies, rather than a single pulse, CHIRP sonar greatly improves the ability to distinguish fish targets that are very close together or on the bottom. Fish become easier to differentiate from the structure they are holding to.
• Less interference from errant noise that would have been picked up by a single frequency sonar. CHIRP creates a unique range of frequencies and listens for only those sonar returns, this gives CHIRP sonar the ability to distinguish between what is a real echo, and what is just extra disturbances bouncing around underwater.”
Boat Intergration (bluetooth)
The Elite ti has these great functions where you can pair the unit with other supported Bluetooth devices like Power-Poles shallow water anchors and motorguide electric motors, allowing you to control them from the Sounder unit.
I have done this on my hobie outback, and have paired it with my Micro Power-Pole, for the main reason as to have a backup if my lanyard control stops working or I lose it. I then still have control of using my Power-Pole anchor.
In the Field
The 9” screen is the largest I’ve used and I can say that extra bit of screen size is really nice to have. It just makes everything that little bit clearer and I can run split screens with easier visibility.
I’ve been using the Elite 9 ti on both my boat and the kayak. On the boat I have it using the totalscan transducer which gives me “Structurescan”, in other words down and side imaging. But on the Kayak I currently only have the HDI transducer which only gives me “downscan” (down imaging).
Totalscan transducers can be run on kayaks like the Hobie PA’s and Outbacks with the help of a Berleypro totalscan mount.
The unit is quick to use, with no lag from the processor, and the touch screen and the limited amount of buttons on the unit are all very easy and intuitive to use.
I really like the ability to be able to customize screen layouts, splits and sizes, and then also add a good array of data overlays. I currently have data like speed, water temp, time, and battery volts on some of my screens for the kayak.
While I do have a navionics card, I have been finding the Insight Genesis social maps are excellent, generally having more detail in regards to depth and contours than the navionics maps, and they are only going to get better with more people starting to map areas.
The ability to be able to download the insight genesis social maps straight onto the Elite ti is simply amazing and makes one less thing to have to organize before a trip.
All you need is a blank microSD card in the unit, and then connect the unit to a wifi hotpsot. Follow the prompts for downloading the area you want. Super simple.
Marking waypoints is also super simple, and I love that about the unit as I can mark quite a lot of points in a short period of time when fishing in the bream tournaments.
Lowrance has marketed the Elite ti units as more of a stand alone unit compared to the HDS series, and this is generally why they have been able to get them down to such a great and competitive price point. The units cannot be networked, and that is mainly the biggest difference between them and the HDS series. Below is a graphic from Lowrance showing the major differences between the units.
So if you have a kayak, or are happy to have 2 separate un-networked units on the boat, then the Elite ti’s are definitely worth a look.
I have been using a 9” on my kayak, and also in the console of the boat, and then a Elite 7 ti unit up the front of the boat with its own transducer on the electric motor. A combo that works for me and that I have been really happy with so far.