We explore some of the best bait boat fish finders available on the market today, from budget options to high end integrated fish finders for bait boats.
We’ll also cover the different attachments available for connecting a fish finder not specifically designed for bait boats.
Technology in carp fishing has come a long way over the last decade, not only can you utilise a bait boat to accurately bait and present your rigs at astounding distances, but you can now use a bait boat fish finder to locate fish, underwater features and clear patches on the lakebed.
All of this is designed to maximise your chances of catching while on the bank. After all, modern carp fishing is about gaining every edge you can.
Fish finders are becoming an increasingly popular accessory for today’s bait boat anglers. They range in price from around £100 for a basic entry-level fish finder to around £800 for the bells and whistles branded versions.
Which bait boat fish finder is right for you? It really boils down to personal choice and budget. Essentially, they all do the same thing, but the most expensive versions claim to do it better and more accurately.
Here we take a look at some of the best options available on the market today.
Starting with the popular universal bait boat fish finders available on eBay from either TMC Tackle or Horizon Fish Finders, both options use the same base Lucky branded fish finder as the unit but use different fitting options to attach the fish finder to the bait boat.
Horizon Standard Fish Finder
The majority of anglers want a fish finder for the absolute essentials of fishing. Usually, fish finders are used for finding a clear spot to fish on and to explore the depth of the swim they’re fishing in.
The Horizon suits these exact requirements and is the perfect entry-level fish finder for your bait boat with a DIY fitting.
This fish finder is universal and will fit most bait boats. The fitting is incredibly simple via an arm bracket which is attached to your boat via self-adhesive pads.
The Horizon actually boasts a huge range of up to 400 meters and weighs less than 300 grams, this bait boat fish finder is ideal for the mobile angler who is looking for a basic solution to map lakebed features and water depth, which will serve you incredibly well when fishing new waters and swims and will certainly save you a lot of time and effort with the marker rod.
Universal Bait Boat Fish Finder
This kit was originally designed by Bait Boat World and the idea was so popular that it was copied by many sellers such as TMC Tackle.
This innovative bait boat fish finder kit transforms the popular Lucky Fish Finder (which we’ve reviewed here) by extending the fish finder range and using a simple kit to attach the wireless fish finder to your bait boat, adding some stability and an improved range of distance to vastly improve on the budget model.
This fish finder will fit most bait boats and offers a very simple fitting via self-adhesive pads. This really is the simplest plug and play fish finder available on the market today, with no expert expertise needed to get up and running. Simply insert the batteries, attach to your bait boat and away you go.
With a range of around 200 meters in good angling conditions, ample battery life and a compact, lightweight handset, this bait boat fish finder is the ideal choice when looking for a budget plug and play option.
This handset is more advanced than the Horizon Standard Fish Finder and for a similar cost, we think this is the best budget option on the market today, and it’s clear why it has been so popular over the years. Available in both colour and black and white display options.
Price: £129 with free UK postage
Lucky Bait Boat Fish Finder
This colour fish finder packs some serious features for such a reasonable price.
Water depth, water temperature, fish location, adjustable sensitivity and zoom, fish location alarm and bottom contour readings along with an impressive range of over 300 meters make this a great budget fish finder.
The colour handset with the Lucky Fish Finder is actually very impressive considering the price of the set, but you will need to make modifications to your bait boat to get the sonar to fit in the correct place for optimal performance, this is standard with most fish finders on the market.
The Sonar will also need a power source from the boat, but there are many YouTube videos that can help you connect the fish finder up to your boat, or you can check online to find independent traders that can complete this for you.
Price: £169 with free UK postage
Deeper Pro Plus Smart Fish Finder
The Deeper Smart Fish Finders were initially released to offer anglers without a bait boat the chance to use fish finders in their angling.
The cricket ball sized and shaped fish finder can be attached to the line on your rod and cast out into the water, then by slowly reeling in, you get a detailed view of your swim through the app on your phone.
However, now there are brackets available for the Deeper Pro Plus fish finders which allows you to mount them onto any bait boat. This makes them a great option to be used with either method, especially with the number of waters where bait boats are banned.
The Deeper Pro Plus has a great number of features with Wi-Fi and GPS working together to ensure great connectivity to the bank, while also mapping the lakes you fish in memory for you to look at using desktop software and mobile app called Fish Deeper, available on iOS and Android.
The Deeper Pro Plus offers 100m connectivity, and is a very versatile option for your angling, although it may not be suitable for fishing at huge distances. Read our detailed review of this fish finder here.
You will need to purchase the bracket to fit the Deeper fish finder to your bait boat. You can buy universal brackets for £17.99 via eBay.
iBobber Fish Finder
The iBobber follows a similar format as the Deeper Fish Finders, in which it can be used on a bracket to be attached to a bait boat, or it can be cast out with a rod.
The iBobber also uses a mobile phone app to view detailed information about the swim you’re fishing in as opposed to a standalone receiver unit.
It can be used for depths up to 135ft and has a connectivity distance of 100m.
The app has fish markers, depth indicators and waterbed mapping, and the app has a couple of useful features like a lunar calendar and up to date temperature and weather readings.
You can buy the iBobber from Amazon using the button below.
Price: from £75
FishSpy Fish Finder and Underwater Camera
The FishSpy features both a fish finder and an underwater camera, but for this article, we’re going to focus mainly on the fish finder features of the product.
The FishSpy can be attached to a bait boat with an attachment arm like this one here, or it can be cast out with a rod. The FishSpy is used in conjunction with an app that is free to download on iOS and Android devices, and on the app, you can view both the underwater sonar signals and the underwater camera.
The FishSpy is incredibly compact, and it was initially designed to be small enough to fit inside a tackle box. It can be used to a range of up to 100m, the phone app graphics are incredibly impressive, and the fish finder is very user-friendly as a whole. You can buy the FishSpy on Amazon using the button below.
For those anglers looking for a more advanced solution, then the Toslon Fish Finders are the best fish finders that money can buy without a shadow of a doubt. They come with more advanced features such as GPS tracking, meaning you’ll be able to make the most of every fishing situation and be confident that your fish finder is completely reliable and accurate.
Please note: These fish finders are not plug-and-play. You will need the sonar to be wired into your bait boat, which requires expert fitting. You can attempt this yourself, but we recommend you seek out professional help when installing these fish finders. You can easily damage your boat if the sonar is not correctly installed, and attempting to complete these upgrades yourself can void any warranty on your boat.
We recommend using The Cabin TS LTD as your supplier for these fish finders. Simply purchase the fish finder and they offer an installation service for an additional fee. Simply send your bait boat to them or drop it off and they will take care of the rest.
Toslon TF520 Bait Boat Fish Finder
The Toslon range of fish finders is considered to be some of the best within the angling community. They pack some fantastic features and offer an unrivalled mapping of the lakebed below.
The TF500 is the entry-level Toslon option but it still offers a range of features which make it great value for money and it’s more than adequate for upgrading your bait boat.
This fish finder has a 2.4ghz radio frequency with a max range of around 300 meters in good angling conditions. It offers a 4.3-inch colour screen with a good resolution and if you purchase the fish finder from The Cabin TS LTD on eBay, you’ll receive an external battery kit worth £39.99.
The Toslon TF500 features fish markers, water temperature gauges, alerts for shallow water, fish and low battery, and it is supplied in a hard carry case for protection.
We recommend using The Cabin TS LTD on eBay as your supplier for this fish finder as they supply detailed instructions on how to install this fish finder yourself. If you’re not comfortable trying the fitting yourself, they will install this fish finder for you for a fee, which we highly recommend as you get the peace of mind that the unit is correctly installed and ready to go.
Price: £599.99 (Free battery kit & tripod included)
Toslon TF640 Bait Boat Fish Finder
The Toslon TF640 is a fish finder and GPS in one. The GPS feature allows you to store over 100 locations on as many lakes as you can fish, allowing you to send out your boat to the exact same spot over and over again, essential when targeting small areas of the lake or when baiting small areas for heavily pressured carp. This accuracy can pay dividends when fishing tight against snags or margins, and can be the difference between catching and blanking on a tough day!
The colour display offers the high resolution you would expect from a fish finder in this price bracket. With a range of over 300 meters and depth of over 80 meters, it’s the perfect companion to cover all angling situations. The 2.4ghz digital frequency ensures you will not clash with any other anglers using fish finders on your water, water temperature indicators, distance indicators, boat speed and alarms signalling everything from lost signal to your boat arriving back at the bank.
This bait boat fish finder is, without doubt, the best all-round option if you have the budget available. It’s built to last and the array of features will ensure you get that edge when mapping the lakebed, searching for wary carp and presenting your baits with complete accuracy time, and time again.
Toslon TF740 Bait Boat Fish Finder
The Rolls Royce of fish finders, the Toslon TF740 is the ultimate bait boat accessory. The TF740 offers a more detailed fish finder with a host of features, advanced GPS + autopilot all in one!
Load the boat, activate the autopilot and the advanced technology will navigate your boat to the exact same spot over and over again.
Unlike other fish finders, the TF740 is designed specifically for bait boats, this fish finder acts as your bait boat operating system, allowing total precision with your bait placement, removing the need for fiddly controls and instead utilising GPS as a foolproof bait and rig placement method.
It can accurately map the lakebed, record water temperature, water depth, distance, features on the lakebed and fish sat in your swim. It is the most advanced bait boat fish finder available on the market today.
The Toslon TF740 features a detailed, high-resolution 5-inch colour screen, a massive 300 meters plus range and 2.4ghz operating frequency to prevent any connectivity issues. The TF740 truly is the ultimate fish finder for the serious angler.
The best place to purchase the Toslon TF740 is The Cabin TS LTD on eBay. However, it is important to note that the cost you see on their listing, and below, is for the fish finder and the fitting to an Anatec Catamaran.
Fitting to other boats is possible, but it’s best to contact them first before purchasing.
Price: £1699.99 (Supplied & Fitted)
Raymarine Dragonfly 5 Pro & 7 Pro Fish Finder For Bait Boats
Raymarine is well-renowned for its echo-sounding technology for boats out at sea, however, this technology has been harnessed into the fishing community for use with bait boats.
It’s arguably the best fish finding technology on the market, with the super high-end sonar display a key feature.
Raymarine’s use of wide-spectrum CHIRP technology allows the fish finder to send more signals through the water, allowing for a more accurate and detailed view of the lakebed and its inhabitants, which is easy to view on Raymarine’s superb app called the Wi-Fish.
The Wi-Fish app has been a real hit due to the number of features within it. You can pause, rewind and even zoom into the sonar through the app, as well as take high-quality pictures and videos to be reviewed later on. You can also live stream the sonar and GPS, as well as save it for future reference and use, meaning once you have mapped out the lake, a copy will always be in your grasp.
The Dragonfly fish finders consist of the Dragonfly 5 Pro and the Dragonfly 7 Pro. There is no difference in quality or features with either, as the numbers represent the size of the LCD screen, so the Dragonfly 5 Pro is the best option for bait boats as it’s the cheaper version.
Price: approx £350
You can now get some great deals on bait boats that include fish finders as part of a package. Here are some of our favourite deals.
Lake Reaper Bait Boat With Fish Finder
The Lake Reaper bait boat offers you an unbelievable option to secure a quality bait boat, with an inclusive fish finder for less than you would pay for a basic model with other companies.
For this reason, The Lake Reaper has become one of the most popular boats on the market, with over 1,250 models sold. The fish finder incorporated into the bait boat features temperature and depth ranges, fish alerts, 450m distance range and a coloured display receiver set.
The boat itself features a bait capacity of 1kg, a run time of up to 3 hours and many other features that are usually found on much more expensive boats.
The Lake Reaper bait boat comes also in a camouflage design and either are fantastic budget bait boats that come with the FF918C colour screen fish finder as part of a package deal.
Price: £549.99 (with fish finder included)
You can also buy the Lake Reaper with fish finder in black for the same price.
Waverunner MK4 Bait Boat + Toslon TF640 Echo & GPS
The Waverunner MK4 is considered one of the best all-round bait boats on the market today. You can now buy this bait boat with a fitted Toslon TF640 fish finder and GPS from The Cabin.
Price: £1744.00 (with fish finder included)
Anatec Catamaran Bait Boat with Fish Finder
The Cabin on eBay is the place to secure the super-impressive Anatec Catamaran complete with a Toslon TF640 fish finder. The Catamaran is heralded as one of the best bait boats of all time, proven by its appearances on BBC and National Geographic TV programmes.
For the full rundown on the Toslon TF640, check out the section above. The Catamaran has dual hoppers with a capacity of over 3kg, a rig release, 500m of connectivity and much more.
The only place to secure this bait boat and fish finder package is on The Cabin’s eBay store.
Price: £1948.00 (with fish finder included)
Anatec PAC Bait Boat + TF500 Fish Finder
Anatec has a much more affordable model available in their range, and The Cabin has incorporated this into a fish finder package too, for the less than £1,000.
Again, the review on the Toslon TF500 can be found in the previous section, and that’s the chosen model for the Anatec PAC.
This bait boat, while smaller than the Catamaran, fights well above its weight with a 1kg hopper, a 3-hour battery life, a simple controller and bright LED lights adorning the hull of the boat.
The Anatec PAC is a stunning bait boat without the fish finder, but the inclusion of the Toslon TF500 makes it one of the best options on the market, especially for UK waters.
Price: £995.00 (including fish finder)
The bait boat fish finders above are all more than capable of covering most angling situations. If you are just starting out, then the budget fish finders mentioned will certainly do the job and give you a new world of opportunities. They are capable of accurately measuring depth, underwater features and fish-holding areas, and the bait boats will allow you to reach areas previously unreachable.
Use these fish finders as an aspect of your angling armoury, rather than using them as fish finding tools. Using them to get a better understanding of the lakebed and the waters you regularly fish will help you become a better angler as you start to understand more about the fish and the water you are fishing.
The more advanced Toslon fish finders are ideal for those larger waters, especially the European reservoirs where bait placement and long-range fishing is essential to ensure you’re making the most of your limited time on the bank.
If you would like to recommend a bait boat fish finder for inclusion in this article, then please comment below.