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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have been doing a lot of Charting this summer on the Red with the Onix and Auto Chart live.

What can I say about it? it is just flawless. Super easy to use, hardly any learning curve, and instantly creates maps as you drive. No difficult software installs no downloads or uploads just chart and make your own depth charts.

I will give a few pointers that will start you off mistake free. First start off put the hummingbird zero lines sd card in your unit and make that the default save location for auto chart live. if you don't have one stop reading and go get one....seriously go get one now.

make yourself a starting point on each body of water you chart to check water level each time you go out. The Red fluctuates greatly, so If you don't have the water level offset to the same level as the last time you charted you can screw up your previous mapping. Also allows you to connect sections you have charted on different days and have them consistent.

The first day I charted the Red I set a way point out in the middle of the channel from Selkirk park. That was 20.5 feet deep. for example if I went out today and charted again first I would hover right on top of that waypoint and if the water level said 19.4 feet that's pretty darn close to 19.5 which is 1 foot lower than the day I started at 20.5 feet and set my water level offset ( -1 ft ). this way it keeps your charting consistent for the Red. Do the same with every water body you chart.

A tip from Darrin Bohonis turn your sensitivity down to 4 or 5 this will make these high powered sonars stay true on sharp drops and edges and not loose bottom for a second and create a dark hole. Ever seen your sonar jump to 30 or 40 feet briefly while in say 10 feet then correct? that's what can happen and it creates a dark black hole but it is easy to remove by going back over it slowly and in a straight line a few times. very much a non issue. turning the sensitivity down can help reduce that.

to get the most accurate maps go back and forth over the areas you are charting at different angles and different directions using your trails on the gps as a guide showing you where you have not gone over yet. When the maps stops changing you have gotten maximum detail.

I spent last year charting with auto chart pro but I will tell you other than wrapping my head around the whole charting process it was a big waste of time. difficult software to install and understand on your PC. difficulty uploading data as you can only do it in blocks and not upload it all in one shot unless you only did one small area. constantly going back and Having to re chart or add on because you never got the detail you wanted and couldn't see it because it was not live as you trolled. Don't waste a second of your life on auto chart pro....get an Onix and spend your days charting on the water and your evenings with the family, not swearing at your PC playing with auto chart.

good luck although with auto chart LIVE ...luck is no longer needed ;) lol
 

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Great post, thank you for this I think it will save a lot of time! The Onix seems like it's as easy to use as the videos I've seen claim. I'm happy to see someone locally post their review.
Apparently, this year is the time to get one as everything is set to go up yet again in the New Year. I should have pulled the trigger on one last year when they were $3500
How does the SI translate into the Autochart Live? I thought I read somewhere the SI was involved in the 3D lake master chart that the Link can use, if I'm right? Or was that for the PC so you can study the map and set points of interest at work or at home? Maybe I misunderstood.
 

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What would be the entry level unit required to chart a water body with Autochart Live? I fish some small out of the way lakes and would like something that would be practical to use on a 14 foot tinner, and still be able to do some accurate mapping while I am out fishing. Thanks in advance for any replies.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Ok so to answer a few questions as best I can.

The transducers are different between the Onix and the other hummingbirds as far as I understand it. I could butcher this explanation so excuse me if I am wrong but I remember Darrin B saying The Onix is a full digital signal, cleaner, more precise compared to the old si Transducers on the past units?

Auto Chart live comes included with all Onix units but is only available on the Onix Line. I have the starting level unit, No SI, NO touch just regular sonar/gps, Onix 8 inch screen.

One more thing these units draw a lot of power. 2.5 amps I think To the point where you really need a battery isolator or a dedicated deep cycle for the sonar.

as for the SI I didn't get it for my Onix. It's a pricey extra and although SI is awesome I can't justify it with the amount I would use it. 90% of my time on open water time is spent guiding cats and the auto chart was the main interest for me. The SI allows you to do a side imagining mosaic on the old auto chart pro but I never looked into if it does the same for the Onix.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
What would be the entry level unit required to chart a water body with Autochart Live? I fish some small out of the way lakes and would like something that would be practical to use on a 14 foot tinner, and still be able to do some accurate mapping while I am out fishing. Thanks in advance for any replies.
I would say yes for sure, as long as you have a dedicated deep cycle for it and don't have to carry the stuff in to say a back country lake. The charting ability is so good really makes you want to use it everywhere you fish if you can rig it. The starting level ONIX8ci NT Combo I think runs around $1800.00
 

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Excellent post and tip.
Will you be using that Onix in the winter? or is that unit not good for winter?
If so I guess the battery usage would be an issue while in the ice.
 

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I didn't know they sold such a cheap model. I figured for that kind of money it comes with DI and SI. Thanks for the reply.

I used to guide for cats, too. Took my friends to Lockport down from the shitshow, pointed at the river and said "fish there" :D:p
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Excellent post and tip.
Will you be using that Onix in the winter? or is that unit not good for winter?
If so I guess the battery usage would be an issue while in the ice.
If I actually spent a little time charting on the big lake before freeze up I could mount it in the track truck and that would be epic!
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Update!! The auto chart live is so awesome! It helped put 20 additional cats in the boat yesterday on new spots I had never fished before.

It can record at any speed and there were a few sections I had just ripped through once while recording. Now you get no real details from that as the first pass through a section of river you will get solid colors and straight depth lines straight across the map until you make additional passes over the same area and it starts giving you more detail. That first pass was all I needed to identify shallow flats that the cats were feasting on the other day.

I fished 3 new spots based on that 1 narrow pass and pounded the cats, while I would say most of the boats I saw and spoke too on the water struggled this weekend.

I am surprising myself how instantly effective this auto chart live is. I can even see myself taking 20 minutes out of a day of fishing to say chart a new area on a body of water before I fish it.
 

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Great job Donovan. This is a great testimonial to the power of 'self-imaging' the water. I'm wondering how long it will take them for them to incorporate the Autochart Live with technology like Strikemaster. Who knows maybe in a year or two, they'll come out with a new series that combines these. The only downside is that they make you have to purchase new hardware each time to get these nice additions. Anyway, great job on the newfound success.
 

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Thought I would chime in my 2 cents. i also bought an onix this year (10ci si). The side imaging is fantastic, and extremely detailed it picks out sunken boats, old docks, pilings, fish with great clarity.another fantastic feature is, as i'm trolling along and see some structure I am able to touch the spot on the side imaging to get my terrova link to sit on that spot via the spot lock. The autochart live is also unreal. The red is everchanging and so is the autochart live. Current affects where the sand, mud silt stack up in the river when this changes it just takes a couple passes to update the maps. Also the autochart produces lakemaster maps. They are the most detailed maps available today. 1ft contours and they are compatible with follow the contour and a host of many other features. If anyone needs help or wants more info pm me or darren bohonas is very knowledgable( he is the humminbird rep)

BB
 

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New Helix 9, Helix 10 & Helix 12 CHIRP

With the recent announcement of of Humminbird's New Helix 9, Helix 10 and Helix 12 CHIRP models, it was also announced that these new units will feature AutoChart Live. This is certainly very exciting news to have AutoChart Live in these lower priced models.
 
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