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Discussion Starter #1
Hi All,
I read the last several Vexilar threads (ok, debates :) ) and I saw a couple guys perfectly happy with an FL-8. I believe FL-8 lacks the zoom feature.

But I've heard people say that if you don't have the zoom, don't bother with a flasher at all.

So, zoom -- or no zoom?
 

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I don't have a vex, but plan to buy one, and the info I have been reading says that to answer your question you we need to know the depth of water you will be fishing. The zoom works best for deeper water where you need to focus on an area rather than the whole water column. People I have talked to with first hand experience have said that in ~20ft. of water or less, there is no need for zoom. Most zoom features zoom to the bottom and the ones I am familiar with from Vex zoom on the bottom 6ft. I would say that if you are fishing in shallower water you would just be spending more money than necessary. I have opted to buy an FL-8 since I fish 95% on the saginaw bay in water depths of 25 feet or less. Now I just need to find the best place to buy one and I will be ready for ice!
 

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Thanks, I'd only be fishing 25ft or less also. If nobody else jumps in and says there's not enough bottom separation at 20ft, I'll go FL-8 too.
 

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I have used my Vex FL 8 SLT for 12 seasons now. Bluegills, Walleye, Perch, Whitefish, Lake Trout are my normal winter target species, with Perch and Walleye my focus.

In less then 75' of water I noticed a small delay in the screen from when I lift my bait to when it actually leaves the bottom on the vex. Very subtle delay in my opinion. Active Walleye I see come in with seperation, usually I entice them to bite with a lifting quiver action, so I see them rise up to take my bait. There are times when fish hug the bottom, I notice a flicker on the vex, lift my bait, fish comes slightly off, but then returns to bottom. Very difficult to see them when they hold like this, but I notice something different on the vex, and these fish usually I have a tough time getting to bite anyway. This is where the zoom would come in handy so you could see that bait right on bottom on that suckers nose and maybe entice a strike.

Perch come in on bottom as well but I notce them with the screen flicker, as they usually school and I usually can tell there mood by the lifting action. I mostly fish the 30 - 50' water for perch and use a perch rig with 4' of seperation between my hooks.

If I was in the market for a new vex, I would take a good hard look at the zoom feature, just so I have it if I need it in those slow situations. It could make the difference between taking home supper or taking home pepe le pu!
 

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FL18 Ultra Pak. If you have ever fished with one compared to the FL8 you would see there is a big difference in target separation. On the 18 with the dual 9/19 degree transducer and the zoom on, after a little practice, you can tell if your tiny tear drop jig has lost its bait, makes no difference if its 10 foot or 40 foot. With the bottom zoom it is that sensitive. I have a friend with an 8 that does show fish but it is no where near as good as an FL18 or the newer FL20. Its the difference between fishing with a zebco 202 and a $200 curado. You can do it but why?

If you are worried about the money aspect then you should really look at the Lowrance X67c Ice Machine................usually can get them for $275 to $299 depending on location.......... They are an excellent graph for the money.....
 

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If you are worried about the money aspect then you should really look at the Lowrance X67c Ice Machine................usually can get them for $275 to $299 depending on location.......... They are an excellent graph for the money.....
Thanks Wally, the Ice machine has zoom?
 

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I have zoom on my Marcum(just as good as a vex IMO), but I rarely use it. I don't feel the need to zoom, and I fish at depths anywhere from 10 ft, to 70ft. Most of the time, in the 12-25 ft. range. Before buying a flasher, make sure you look into all the options, as it is alot of money to be spending.
 

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in ~20ft. of water or less, there is no need for zoom.
i agree.

one thing. the bottom reading that the sonar shows is the dead center under the transducer AND bottom further out will be further away from the transducer will show up "deeper" on the sonar display. the true bottom is actually quite a bit of the last colors shown, not just the leading edge, even for a perfectly flat bottom. for the same reason, a fish traveling perfectly horizontally towards the bait will appear to rise, but it isnt.
 

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MMMmmm Scooby Snacks RULE!
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Having NO zoom is much like a comparison between iron sights and a 8X scope on your rifle!

:D
 

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You want zoom!! I use it in any depth that I fish, and it DOES help. Why not spend a few extra bucks just so it's there? You won't regret paying a little more a week after you but it so just upgrade. Just my two cents.
 

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I have the fl20 bigger screen than the 8 and with the zoom I can see thing that my buddy can not see with his 8. I believe the flasher and the zoom has helped me alot last year with my fishing.
The only time I do not use one of the zoom option is if I am fishing in less than 10 feet of water. The fl20 has a 6foot and 12foot bottom zoom.
Any unit will help you catch more fish, the zoom option gives you just another advantage to have. You must learn to read the unit and beable to understand what you are seeing.
I did and would recomend spending the extra money.
 
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