A successful journalist and news reporter in the past, George is now focused on freelance work to be able to dedicate more time to the most important things in his life: family, friends, his dogs, and fishing.
John is an avid traveler, hiker, and RVer. Moreover, it seems like he knows everything when it comes to fishing and hunting: his father started sharing all the tips and tricks he knew when John was a kid. No wonder we trust his opinion every time a new article is being created.
Last updated: June 23, 2021
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Ice fishing can be tough, and you want to have all the help from tools and devices that you take with you. Getting the best ice fishing flasher will make finding your next catch a lot easier. It’ll help you to find out the location of the fish, how many there are, and how close they are to your jig. It makes getting the catch that you want more likely. But with many great options out there, it can be hard to find the right model for you.
To help you out, we’ve examined 21 different ice fishing flashers and picked six of them for this article. In our search, we found the Humminbird ICE-55 to be our top pick. It has an easy-to-read display and able to show you a wide area with an impressive battery life. If you want to check something else, we also have five other options for you that ensure excellent performance.
To find the best ice fishing flashers out there, we have spent 54 hours researching and testing the flashers and have also consulted countless expert sources to give you only the best information. Here, we will take a closer look at multiple features such as display, max depth, beam, battery, and weight to help you understand what you should be looking for. In this article, we’ve included detailed reviews of each product, a comprehensive buying guide, and FAQs to make it easier for you to learn more about these devices. Once you’ve finished reading, you’ll know how to get the best ice fishing flasher.
It’s hard to look past this ice fishing flasher out there because it has many useful features, including a great array of viewing options on a high-quality display that is easy to read.
If you’re ice fishing in a popular area, then there is a good chance that you’re going to get interference on your signal with cheaper models. This flasher will block any of those signals and will allow you to get a clear picture.
The gain on this model is adjustable, but quite a few users have complained that the knob isn’t of the highest quality. Also, if the knob does fail, the company doesn’t sell replacements and instead to have to pay their high repair costs.
There are plenty of other excellent features if this flasher. The sonar used is dual-beam, and that will give you great coverage in different areas since you can use a narrow or wide beam. You’ll be able to identify fish and bottom structure with contours.
With adjustable depth and zoom, you’re going to be able to get the exact picture that you’re looking for. The battery is also amazing. I will last for a long fishing trip out on the ice. Furthermore, the unit comes with a wall charger. Finally, a carry case is included to protect it from any bad weather.
In terms of functionality, it doesn’t get any better than this. Firstly, the ice fishing flasher has a 5-color display. Once you are confident with what you’re doing, you’ll be able to identify fishing hotspots easily.
As well as having that clear display, you also have a max depth of up to 300’. That is a lot more than other options offer out there and great for those larger lakes. The transducer is of high quality and works well in all conditions.
The sonar beam has three different angles, and that’s going to allow you to get the perfect setting for your needs. There are also day and night modes that add to the immense functionality of this ice fishing flasher.
Having a digital readout makes your life a lot easier, but if you’re unsure about how the unit should be used, there are instructions included and a DVD to guide you through. We also like that it comes with a case that is designed to protect the unit from harsh conditions.
This ice fishing flasher is fairly expensive, but most people will see that as a price worth paying for the premium quality that you get here.
Garmin is another company that has entered the world of fish finding with a model that looks a little different from the other ice fishing flashers that we have looked at. It is still able to perform brilliantly.
If you’re looking for the best flasher with GPS for ice fishing, then this is going to be perfect for you. It’s also the best entry-level ice fishing flasher as it’s much more affordable than other models out there.
Although it has an ice fishing mode, the transducer that comes with this model wasn’t specifically designed for ice. That means you’ll have to buy one separately, which does add to the cost of the flasher.
What this flasher has is a good level of versatility as you would be able to use it for ice but also many other types of fishing. It’s very simple to use, and you can even set waypoints, so you know the best spots when you get back to fishing.
GPS and built-in maps can help you to navigate. You can get many parameters on the screen, such as your speed, depth of the water, and arrival time. When fishing, detailed images can help you to make the whole process more efficient.
Vexilar is a company that is well respected in the world of ice fishing. This model is very easy to carry as well with a large handle.
The 3-color signal strength display will clearly show you what is below the surface. With a maximum depth of 200’, you’re going to have a lot of confidence that you’ll come away with a successful haul.
One of the most impressive aspects of this fishing flasher is the level of durability it has. The flasher is going to be able to stand the best of time, even in the harsh environments it is going to be used in. Shocks and drops won’t be a problem for this device.
While we didn’t encounter any problems of this kind, a few users have noted that the Genz Pack holder could slide on the snow, so they had to be careful with placing it on sloped crust ice. Fortunately, you are able to place it on a bucket, and it is going to sit up there nicely.
Many people still think that this holder adds to the overall ease of use with this ice fishing flasher, and you’ll find it an invaluable piece of your kit as it can hold everything, including the battery. The delivery is quick, and this is a flasher you’ll be very happy with.
If you’re looking for an ice fishing flasher with the clearest possible display, then you’re going to love this model. The large 8-inch display is very easy to read, and its four selectable color palettes will let you see exactly what’s below the water.
The max depth of 300’ is going to give you a great level of coverage. There are also two different beam angles to help you find the fish and see how they are interacting with your jig.
While this fishing flasher is perfect for searching in the depths, it isn’t quite as effective in shallower waters. One area where it does excel is in keeping up to date, as there is a USB port, which you can use to upgrade its software.
The 2-year warranty shows how much confidence the manufacturer has in the durability of their ice fishing flasher. You are able to extend the life of the fishing flasher with the case that is included. It’s a well-built model that should last for a good number of years. The screen shows all the important information and gives you the best possible chance of making that catch.
What are its best features?
Large LCD display contains useful information about prey
If you’re looking for a smaller and more portable ice fishing flasher, this one could well be the right unit for you. At only 10 pounds, it is very easy to carry and comes in a compact size.
The only drawback here is that the screen is being a little smaller than other options that we’ve looked at. Also, the buttons are smaller, and that could be an issue for some. Apart from those issues, fishing flasher is very easy to use.
This model doesn’t have the deepest range that we’ve seen. It can still go down 160’, so it does give you a good range. That’s helped by the two different beam angles it features to give you clear and concise information.
A 2-year warranty is included with this flasher, and there is also a case to keep it protected. It’s a model that should be able to last for a good few years of continuous use. With this setup, it can handle the extreme cold as well as drops and bumps.
You won’t have to worry about it getting any interference from other flashers, and also, it’s one of the quietest ice fishing flashers out there. If you’re looking for something a little more compact, then you’re going to love this model.
The last thing that you want to do is get to your ice fishing spot and find out that the gear that you have isn’t what you expected. With a variety of products on the market, it’s important to know what all the key features are and how they relate to your needs. In this buying guide, we’re going to go through all of them to paint a clear picture of the best ice fishing flasher for you.
How to pick the best ice fishing fish flasher
It’s easy to fall into the trap of thinking that all ice fishing flashers are the same, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. Each of them shows different performance and has varying levels of functionality. As we go through this guide, it’s a good idea to carefully read through each key feature and make a note of just how important it is to you. Therefore, you won’t be disappointed with your purchase and will be able to make the biggest catch in your life!
The displays on ice fishing flashers have evolved over the years since these units gradually become more technologically advanced. Digital displays, such as the Vexilar FLX-28 has, are becoming more popular for novice anglers as they are easier to read.
As soon as you have learned how to use one, a flasher can give you clear information that you can quickly analyze. There are those out there, which have a combined display, and some see that as having the best of both worlds.
There are also other indicators you need rather than just fish. Some models, such as the Marcum LX-7, will show the likes of battery level, depth, range, voltage, and other useful measurements.
While some fishers may welcome extra information on the screen, others will be happier using a traditional color display.
Before you buy your ice fishing flasher, it’s important to know the depth range where your prey swims. As well as focusing on the maximum depth that they’ll be able to show, another great feature is to have multiple selections of depth. This will allow you to adjust the settings depending on the type of water you’re on, the fish you want to catch, and your experience. These flashers will all have varying depth levels, so they will allow you to find the fish quite fast.
If you want to search in deep water, then you need to look for an ice fishing flasher that has the power to enable you to do so. As we mentioned, you want to analyze your own needs and then find a model that is going to match that.
The transducer is what converts the electricity of the flasher into sound waves in order to give you those sonar signals. This should always be included in your flasher because without one, you’re not going to be able to do anything.
It’s worth point out that not all transducers are going to be perfectly set up for ice fishing. Some transducers are made for regular fishing. In that instance, you’d have to get a separate transducer.
One feature that you need to look for with the transducer is what beam angles they offer. Depending on varying factors, sometimes it’s better to have a narrow angle or a wider view. Ideally, you need to get a transducer that can do both.
The last thing that you want is to head out there onto the ice with your new fishing flasher only to find out that the battery can’t withstand low temperatures. All of the models we have looked at have reliable batteries with good life, but some are better than others. If you’re going to be away from a power source for a long time, it’s important to check its longevity. For example, the Humminbird ICE-55 boasts a 9Ah battery, so it is going to work longer compared to cheaper models.
As well as the working time, you also want to consider how it fast charges and whether you need a wall outlet. Having a battery that can charge via a vehicle adapter can be a great help.
For some people, weight isn’t going to be much of an issue. For others, it is crucial. The models that we have looked at here are fairly similar in weight, but they do go from 8 pounds, just like the Garmin Striker 4, up to 13 pounds, which could be seen as a big difference to some.
With extra weight often comes with extra durability and functionality, but that’s not always going to be the case. You need to get an ice fishing flasher, which is comfortable for you to use and carry, especially if you have to travel long distances.
A carry case is going to be important for two reasons. Firstly, they help to keep the fishing flasher protected. Even though these devices have a good level of durability, you still don’t want them to be subject to ice and stormy conditions.
The primary reason is that it makes them easier to carry, and this is going to be especially important with heavier models. Not all models come with a carrying case included, and, therefore, it’s a good idea to check this before you buy. The Vexilar FLX-28 is a great example of an ice fishing flasher that comes with a useful carry case.
It seems obvious that an ice fishing flasher should be able to cope with colder temperatures, but not every unit can work well in those conditions. Some brave anglers out there go fishing in temperatures far below freezing point, and your technology needs to cope with this.
Some fish finders are made for regular fishing and not the harshest environments. As well as the durability, you also want to check that the transducer is compatible with ice fishing. If it’s not, you will have to buy one separately.
When you’re buying any type of product, you want to have assurances that what you’re getting is high quality. One of the ways you can do that is by getting a warranty. It shows the trust that a company has in the product that they are offering. For instance, the Humminbird ICE-55 comes with a 2-year warranty that can set your mind at ease.
With warranties, there always comes a word of caution. Each warranty will offer you a slightly different level of coverage, with some only covering you for manufacturing defects. While getting a warranty is important, you want to ensure you’re adequately covered.
With ice fishing flashers, you’re going to find that there are quite a few budget levels available. If you’re looking at the lower end of the scale, then the Garmin Striker 4 would be a great option at just under $175. It’s a fish finder that works extremely well, but you may have to buy an ice-specific transducer to go with it.
At the mid-range level, the Vexilar FL-18 Genz Pack and Humminbird ICE-55 models at around $400 have an excellent range of functionality with perfect max depth and beam angles to give a you better coverage area. These will be more than enough for your needs.
If budget isn’t an issue and you want to spend a little extra, then the Marcum LX-7 or Vexilar FLX-28 would be the best bet at around $700. These have all the functionality that you could ever need, and they will ensure that you get outstanding results every time. They are easy to use and have wonderful displays.
Two main things happen when a battery encounters cold weather. On the positive side, cold weather helps a battery hold its charge for longer. When it’s not in use, this will help your battery last quite long, and you don’t have to worry about it dying on you when not in use. On the downside, when it is in use, it dispenses its charge more quickly. The batteries in these models are quite resilient, so they will last for a full fishing trip in cold weather. If you’re worried about their performance at a lower temperature, then it’s a good idea to get a fishing flasher with a battery indicator.
An ice fishing flasher will allow you to see below the ice, and that can be a huge advantage. Once you know how to use them, you’ll find them very easy to use. Many fish finders aren’t set up very well for ice fishing and instead excel with other types of fishing. Once you lower the transducer, you’ll be able to set the depth and then adjust the gain until you get a picture on your screen. You can then adjust the zoom to focus on the area that you’re fishing and use the colors to determine how your jig is performing and how fish are interacting with it.
The answer to this question depends on what kind of transducers you want to use since some of them are not designed to be used on ice. That is why you often can’t use some transducers for ice fishing. However, what you can do is use different ice transducers with the same flasher, and this can work very well. It’s vital to double-check that you’re getting a transducer that is going to be compatible with the model you are using. Often manufacturers will suggest transducers, and that can make it a lot easier. Although you will need to pay a little bit extra for that, you can notice the difference if you are searching for a transducer for specific needs.
While all the models that we’ve looked at here are excellent, our favorite one is the Humminbird ICE-55. It boasts a huge variety of useful features and is able to give you an unsurpassed advantage when it comes to finding those fish below the ice. The display of this unit is easy to read, and the coverage area is impressive.
Next, we have the Vexilar FLX-28 Ice ProPack II. This premium model offers up to 300 feet of max depth range and three different beam angle settings. Furthermore, there are day and night modes, and helpful instructions and DVD will make it easier for you to operate.
If you’re looking for a versatile fish finder, then the Garmin Striker 4 could be more to your needs, as long as you get an ice-specific transducer to go with it. The best part about this unit is the affordable price tag.
While these three models are incredible, it could be that a feature from one of the other models has caught your eye. All the ice fishing flashers we’ve looked at here have excellent qualities, and you can’t go wrong. Simply pick the best ice fishing flasher for you and enjoy getting your prey what is swimming below the ice.