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The MarCum LX-3 has it all for ice fishing. How do I know you might ask? I did a performance test last season and my LX-3 out performed my Vexilar FL-18 in all tests in under 40' of water. Look at the pluses with the LX-3 you get it all without additional add-ons. Here are some comparisons noted from my tests.
This would be the FL-18 Pro Pak versus the MarCum LX-3 ice fishing system.
Target Separation (non zoom)
MarCum 2.15" Vexilar 2.65" Advantage MarCum

Target Separation (zoom)
MarCum 1" Vexilar .5" not true it's more like 1"

Zoom

Advantage MarCum. The adjustable zoom on the MarCum LX-3 blows the FL-18 away. You can put a multiple zoom window anywhere you want in the water column to amplify your target area. In the 20 or 40' setting on the LX-3 you can have a 5' or 10' zoom window that can be placed anywhere in the water column. This feature amplifies your target area and reduces your target separation which cleanly captures images in the target area, awesome feature. The FL-18 only gives you 6' off the bottom that's it.
Here's and example of where the zoom window on the MarCum out performs the Vexilar. I fish perch on a lake close to home. Most of these fish run anywhere from the bottom to 2' off bottom. This scenario is 90% of the time on this lake these fish will chase 7 to 9' off the bottom to take your spoon. These fish are outside the zoom parameters of the FL-18 as they only give you the bottom 6' the MarCum LX-3 with the zoom positioned to show the bottom 10' allows yout to use that feature in the target area. That's amazing. On my vex I have to switch the zoom off because it was outside it's zoom parameters.
Another example is when your fishing suspended fish such as crappie having the ability to position the LX-3's zoom anywhere in the water column allows tou to see in detail what you'll be missing on your Vex. Fishing 27' of water I have caught crappies in 17' having the LX-3's multiple positioned zoom window allows me to blow up the target area in great detail and catch the larger fish and eliminate the smaller ones.
Another deficiency in the FL-18 is while in zoom mode while fishing flats if you hole hop every time you switch holes you have to reset the zoom. The MarCum you set the zoom on the first hole you fish and you need not to readjust. That feature allows for more time fishing than constant adjusting. The Marcum stays locked in and is extremely essential when fishing fast and wanting to stay in zoom.

Display Crispness
No Brainer MarCum - I have never seen a unit that could crisply and cleanly amplify the target area and aid you in extracting the larger fish, seeings believing.

Display Colors
No Brainer Vexilar - There colors are great compared to MarCum but the display is blobby compared to the LX-3's but no doubt I like Vexilar's colors better

Soft Pack
MarCum has one vex doesn't, It's functional and has storage compartments on the sides heavy duty construction not like the vex bag.

Battery Charger
MarCum has the DCS which is revolutionary. No more clips and leads. The battery has a digital read out that gives you constant status without pushing a button and the auto shutoff charger is piece of mind

Transducers
Vexilar has 3 available 9, 12 and 19. The FL-18 was designed with the use of the 12 deg. transducer in mind as they recommend this cone with the FL-18 and sell them with the 12 deg. mostly. The 19 deg. ducer is an option and so isn't the 9. I have heard of sporadic quality issues with 19 deg. ducers.
The MarCum LX-3 although a 20 deg. transducer is designed with Marcum's highly adjustable gain/sensitivity enables you to fish multi species with great versatility. MarCum's 1500 watts allows you to fish bluegills in 10' or less and lake trout up to 160' truly amazing. The FL-18 is designed predominantly for perch and walleye ice anglers in mind.

Versatitility
Either one of these units can be fished off a boat during the fishing season. Each company has available transducers for this to be accomplished.

Warranty - Both have two year warrantees and both customer services have been great for me.

This is my second season fishing both these units and for me the clear choice is MarCum. This unit gives you everything for ice fishing at a decent price. The one plus I like with the FL-18 is fishing tight to structure having that 9 deg. cone is great for fishing steep drops and eliminating or minimizing your dead zone. Other than that for value and multi species performance MarCum has it. Vexilar improved there FL-8 with the FL-18 but MarCum has set the bar for Vexilar to catch up.
 

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Reads more like a "sales pitch", than a "performance rating".:rolleyes: The Marcum may be a good choice for a "new-comer", the reason I say this is because, if I had to venture a guess, I'd say, 90% of "die hard" ice fishermen, have a Vexilar. Not that the Marcum isn't a good unit, I'm sure it is. My point is,,, I don't think anyone is going to put their FL-18 on the "shelf" and go out and buy another flasher.:rolleyes: IMHO
 

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Seeing 15 of your 21 posts and replys are about the marcum you must really like it.

chad1
 

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I have Two Vexilars, My father in-law has Two Vexilars, my friends all Have Vexilars, and we love them. You can take whatever fish finder you want, and if you don't know how to catch fish it won't help. Enjoy your Lx 3, but don't expect a whole lot of praise from us. You see me on the ice pay special attention to the Vexilar hat. I have a slew of dead fish to my credit with the help of my Vexilar, Thanks Vexilar.
 

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CNY Timmy - You cant hide from me, lol. Anywhere you are spreading you Marcum "stuff" im there.
How many time do I have to say its all about preference and neither flasher is gonna catch you more fish than the other???

Your splitting atomis hairs with your tardet seperation info. C'mon now.
One thing to remember is those thinner crisper lines dont mean that the targed ID is better.... And visually those thin lines can be a headache for some users, as well as can the colors on a vex....

Zoom - Having a zoom is definatly a nice feature and the 10 ft zoom option on the SkidMarcum is nice. But the adjustable zoom is way over marketed and over hyped. It is a useless feature for all except the very few. Thats the very few who might be targeting deep water suspended crappies, which show up fine in non zoom mode.... I tell ya another thing, I use the zoom on my vex alot less than when I first got it. It is nice in alot of scenarios but a hinderence in some....

Soft pack??? Who cares. I have been useing flashers for about 12 years and have never wanted a "softpack". At first I used a homemade wooden box and went to a bluebox after one was given to me. Those flimsy softpacks dont protect anything. They keep snow off it and thats about it...

Not trying to toot my own horn but who do you know that catches more fish consistantly than me(or for that matter my father, AB, and T)??? If we thought the Marcum was gonna catch us more fish we'd all have one, in a heartbeat!!! They are a great unit but not a miricle worker.
Having electronics and useing it properly will put more fish on the ice. Just another tool in the box. Having a big tool box and the knowhow to use all those tools makes a good carpenter....

William H Bonney - I love the name and quote. I have read alot of books about the "kid" and Youn Guns I and II are two of my favorite movies.... "many a slip twix a cup and a lip" ~~ alot can happen between now and then....
 

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Dark Cloud:
I didn't know you were so literature proficient. I am impressed. You are absolutely correct on the issue of flasher or tools in general for that matter. I do know of a few who are as good or better at hanging fish and they don't even use a flasher. Their knowledge and technique is based on experience. They have so much confidence in themselves and their technique that if they don't catch something within a few minutes they move. Oh, by the way Pices is celebrating another year on the 24th. I know she would like to hear from you, Longfellow! LOL Later, Lipripper Al
 

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DARK CLOUD
After reading yet another of CNY Tims Skid Marcum propaganda, sales pitch, opinionated, headache causing, upset stomach causing, disrespectful to his friends posts, I will have to lay the egg once and for all on this topic based on CNY Tims love of the Zercom/Marcum relationship that he's had over the past 4 years, however, I won't do so until I return home tonight after visiting you in the southern tier this afternoon.
Some long hard thought will go into this and the possibility of broken friendships will be hard to avoid but I've heard enough and have seen enough of the Marcum BS that Tim continually spreads even though he's promised us both that he would keep his Pie Hole shut on that topic and just fish with his friends as he's mentioned in the past that it's what icefishing is all about.
Running from State to State ice fishing forums and spreading the Skid Marcum propaganda doesn't count.
My brain hurts but the steam will be let off this evening.
See you in a couple hours.
 

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The flasher is only one tool of many we use to play the game. You or anyone else cannot tell me they can catch more fish than me because they have a marcum lx3 and I have 2 vexilars fl8-slt . If I had no unit at all and was going to buy one I would go with the fl-18, but already having 2 units thats enough for me. I see so many people fishing that have all the stuff and still don't catch any fish, they look good though. :D
 

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Hey Tony On Ice, I would be more than happy to take Cny Tim fishing anywhere fishing for any price per fish and adjust his attitude for you, I fish 3-4 days a week and just know I'm that good, there's a whole lot more to it than just the flasher right!:D
 

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I'm about tired of these threads. Its kinda like guys who ride honda's and guys who ride Harley's. They just don't mix :) Tim seems like a nice guy the marcum debate is old now. We aren't going to give up are Vex's for marcums :) Neither one will make them bite.
 

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So the Marcum doesnt have the three colors like a Vexialar? Arent they both made over sees anyways? Im leaning toward the Marcum since you can zoom in at any level from waht I understand and glad I waited to buy.
 

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Tommy N - We have tried goating timmy into an on ice fish-off. He thinks we'd cheat somehow, lol. He is a good fisherman though with alot of on ice experience. Just a tad caucht up in the "brand" thing with jigs, rods, line, etc.... Alot of people out there look good but cant catch a cold. :)
 

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How come you have to reset the zoom on the vex? What happens if you don't reset it and just drop it in another hole?


The only time I would want to zoom is on the bottom, because its hard to tell if they're are fish. I have never had a problem with crappies w/o and wouldn't want to zoom because they are usually scattered. I don't own a flasher but use my friends and next year i'm getting the fl-18 I saw that thing this weekend and it is sweet.
 

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rip-n-lip - aka buzzsaw, yeah im a literature major, lol. A real bad speller too. Im actually a decent speller just dont proof read my stuff to well. You better treat Ruthie great on her B-day.....

Nuge 15 - I love the pict at the bottom of your post. He was great. It hasent gotten here yet but for my birthday im getting the dvd of his that the "best of SNL". Its great to see that a youngin like you figured out how over hyped and unnnecisary that adjustable zoom is.... You'll love that new 18....

Lunker - The Marcum displays in a yellow/orange.... It is nice but not as bright as the new vex's. Personal preference on that, it would be best to check both out. Everyones eyes are diff...
 

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Talk about brand loyal freaks....
Originally posted by William H Bonney
The Marcum may be a good choice for a "new-comer", the reason I say this is because, if I had to venture a guess, I'd say, 90% of "die hard" ice fishermen IMHO
Good greif......
Should I blabber how 90% of die hard hunters use the age-old time tested .30-.30 JaCkHanDLE ???
Obviously the guy likes his machine , and you are seeing "improvements" to the Vexilars for a good reason... competition !!
I know how all you VeX people HATE my preference for a DECENT LCD Graph - but then I've been using SONAR for well over 20 yrs , and I can " read into " an echo better than most , and keep the machine TweaKeD-Up so I can see stuff others miss.... Am I going to by a VeXilar now??? Probably as soon as I trade my .30'06 for a .30-.30 !!!
Try to RESPECT this guys opinion , and quit trying to flame him .
He owns both machines and PREFERS the MarCuM... I know what he means by "the display is blobby" , because the motor speed control circuit on the MarCum is better at HOLDING it's RPM's
REMEMBER??? I used to run a service dept. for VeXiLaR !!
The Marcum appears that it ISN'T made overseas...
http://www.marcumcustomerservice.com/story/story_main.aspx "Like all our products our the newest products in our line-up; the LX 3, LX-1 and LX-i sonar units were designed, manufactured and tested right here in the USA."
I know LOTS of you guys have NO respect for my opinion , but this is someone else's!
EVERYBODY just mellow out!!
:D Robert :D
 

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marcum does have three colors, yellow orange & red but no green. i like the green, but i own the marcum cause its 1500 watts baby, and you can never have enough POWER!!!!:D
 
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