The two units we’re comparing today are the Lowrance HOOK 4 and the Garmin Striker 4CV. Both are 5’’ units seem identical in their features such as down scanning sonar, GPS, and the CHIRP sonar, but are also different in their own way.
If you wanted to purchase one of the two, but aren’t sure on which one to choose, continue reading. This will give you a clear insight into both units allowing you to make the final decision much easier.
Lowrance Hook 4
This Lowrance Hook 4 fish finder is also a GPS with Down Scan sonar and 2D broadband CHIRP sonar. This unit has the HDI skimmer transducer that operates at 83/200 kHz for 2D. For the Down Scan, it runs at 455/800 kHz.
For the 2D, the unit uses High Range CHIRP and Medium Range CHIRP that allows for better target separation and much clearer images.
It also features a transom mount that works as a temperature sensor that shows you the temperature of the top layer of the water you’re in.
Unlike the Lowrance Hook 4x model, the Lowrance Hook 4 features GPS receiver and base maps. Sadly, these aren’t very detailed, but you’ll get some fair use out of them nonetheless. These maps cover more than 3000 rivers and lakes.
The device has advanced signal processing or the ASP that puts manual adjusting to a minimum. It allows you to see all the bottom detail, structure, and fish much more clearly.
One of the best things about this Lowrance Hook is its color display. The color display makes everything easier when it comes to fish finders, since it’s much easier to read than a black and white screen.
The display has a pixel matrix of 480V x 272H and 4.3’’ in diagonal.
The device is keypad operated, featuring a microSD card reader for data backup, chard upgrades, and recorded sonar logs.
Garmin Striker 4CV
This is one of the best fish finders on the market at the moment, though the device has pretty standard features. The Garmin Striker 4CV features things like a circular flasher, A-scope, fish alarms, fish symbols. Still, it lacks an important feature that is the sonar recording.
It has two types of sonar: the ClearVu CHIRP and the 2D CHIRP. Precisely, it has the ClearVu transducer otherwise known as CV20-TM that operates at 455/800 kHz for ClearVu, and 77/200 kHz for 2D sonar.
This means it can use high CHIRP and medium CHIRP, though for ClearVu it can handle a modulation between 800-840 kHz and 435-475 kHz.
It has a quite sensitive GPS receiver that helps locate your position precisely and in no time. It also maintains your GPS location easily where ever you are at the lake.
Still, it lacks any charts, and you also can’t upgrade it yourself with any premium charts. Its navigation base is called waypoint map. This is a blank sheet where you mark your waypoints and then record the trail between them.
The first thing you’ll notice in this model of Garmin Striker is that it’s a small device. Its display is 3.5’’ in diagonal which may come as a surprise since its name states 4 and not 3.
Still, it’s important to mention that it’s a color display, with LED backlight. It also has a rich pixel matrix; richer than many other fish finders at that. The pixel matrix is 480V x 320H.
1. Sonar capabilities
Both these fish finders have dual-frequency sonar and both use CHIRP for the traditional 2D view sonar. Still, only the Garmin fish finder uses CHIRP for the ClearVu feature.
Though, the difference between the DownScan and CHIRP ClearVu isn’t all that big.
This is one feature that’s specific to the Lowrance fish finder. The Lowrance Hook doesn’t have CHIRP for its DownScan sonar; it blends the 2D CHIRP with the DownScan. This allows you to use best of both worlds and benefit from the CHIRP in DownScan.
Both of these devices come with somewhat similar transducers. However, the Garmin uses 77/200 kHz base frequencies for the 2D sonar, while the Lowrance uses 83/200 kHz. Not a significant difference but it may be relevant to some people.
Still, both units use same base frequencies for DownScan and ClearVu; 455/800 kHz.
This solar recording function is specific to the Lowrance fish finder. As mentioned above, the Garmin fish finder can’t record sonar.
If sonar recording is vital to you, it’s important to remember that the Lowrance Hook 4 has the option, while the Garmin Striker 4CV doesn’t.
Much like other Striker devices, the Garmin Striker 4CV doesn’t have current charts. It has what’s called a waypoint map that’s a blank sheet where you mark your waypoints.
The Hook 4, however, has the Lowrance Basemaps. These aren’t the best nor are they very detailed, but they are helpful. The base maps provide depth contours and boundaries between land and water.
The Lowrance fish finder is the winner in this case. The Garmin device can’t be upgraded with any charts, while the Lowrance one can be improved with some premium charts like the Nautic Insight PRO, Lake Insight, Navionics+, and several more. Also, it can use the Insight Genesis custom maps, too.
The difference in display quality is significant, although it may not seem so right off the bat. The Lowrance fish finder has a 4.3’’ display, while the Garmin has a 3.5’’ display.
Still, the Striker device has much better pixel resolution that’s 480 x 320, while the Hook 4 has no more than 480 x 272.
8. Card reader
This is pretty black and white since the HOOK device has a microSD card reader, while the Striker doesn’t. Having a microSD card reader may not seem as important, but it’s often a deal breaker for some people.
HOOK’s microSD card reader has one slot that’s ideal for data transfer or chart upgrades.
It’s hard to decide on one of the two since they have pretty similar features and very few differences. Even the differences that are somewhat important aren’t as significant and appear to be neglectable.
The clear winner of the battle and our recommendation is the Garmin Striker 4CV. It features some of the more important stuff that you’ll find useful when fishing.
For example, it does have a smaller display but has far better pixel resolution. This is just an example of how the Garmin fish finder has better technical specifications although it doesn’t have as many features.
Finally, try both of these if you have the chance. If not, choosing the Garmin Striker 4CV will prove to be the right thing after only a few times out in the water.