EUFAULA, Ala. – Marine electronics have become essential tools for the job of professional anglers. They are the eyes and ears beneath the surface, and the majority of the Bass Pro Tour field has two graphs mounted at the bow of the boat to utilize split screens and get a picture of everything they can.
If you follow Jacob Wheeler on social media or caught MLF NOW! yesterday, you may have noticed something very unique about the front deck of Wheeler’s boat: He has three graphs up front. And while that itself is unique, the real story is that they’re all three different brands.
While discussing this on MLF NOW!, analyst JT Kenney explained some of the reasoning.
“Jacob is one of the best athletes in the sport, and any those three companies would love to sponsor him. But he decided to forgo that, because in his mind, each of them does one thing better than the others,” Kenney said.
Wheeler added this video to his YouTube channel, which explains why he is using three different electronics brands on one boat, and also gave us some insight into his reasoning.
Modern-day marine electronics are highly sophisticated and capable of things that we would have imagined a few years ago. Plus, they keep getting better every year. This goes for all different brands, and Wheeler agrees that they all make a solid product.
“All of the brands are great, phenomenal actually,” Wheeler said. “I realize that not everyone can go out and buy all three, and the good news is, all of the brands are making really good products right now.”
For Wheeler, it came down to how he planned to use each of the different graphs for his fishing style. He also stated that he wants to help give electronics tips to his YouTube viewers, no matter what brand they run.
“I bought all of these graphs with my own money, and it’s an opportunity to give back and help teach people how to use them all,” he added.
This is the brand that Wheeler has the most experience with over the years, and he plans to use their 2D sonar and several other features he has come to know and love over the years.
“The Point-1 antenna and range rings are two things that help me with my fishing,” Wheeler said. “I’m also using my Lowrance units for waypoint management because I have a catalog of icons that I have collected over the years.”
He explained that his system is a complex code of icons with unique symbols showing different things. “If someone were to look at all of my waypoints, they would have no idea what they are looking at,” he explained, and as an example, he said that he has it cataloged down to the size of rock piles under the surface.
The primary reason a Garmin is mounted to Wheeler’s Triton is because of its Panoptix LiveScope technology. He has one unit dedicated to this forward-facing sonar, and he plans to utilize this most for targeting offshore bass.
For Wheeler, one of the biggest reasons for adding a Humminbird this year is its 360 technology. Wheeler explains that they have other great features, but this tool was one he had to have.
“I ran Humminbird for several years and am familiar with using them, but the 360 will allow me to see all around the boat to look for stumps, ditches, and get more information about what is out there,” he said.