Lowrance HDS Pro Review

Lowrance Fish Finder Reviews

The Lowrance HDS Pro is the company’s new high-end series of fish finder. This unit is similar to the HDS Live unit, but with a few changes.

Physical Changes

Lowrance HDS pro 10 display unit

The HDS Pro has a blue Waypoint key on the top right, giving a nice accent to the hash marks on the Arrow PAD. The HDS logo is located at the bottom right of the screen and the model number designation is also highlighted in blue. 

The sizes available for the HDS Pro Series are 9, 10, 12, and 16 inches. The 10-inch size is a new addition and is expected to be popular among bass fishermen who want to have a dual display unit on their Dash.


The price of a pair of tens comes in at $1300 cheaper than two 12-inch units. If you’re currently running a Live unit and are considering upgrading to the Pro, the brackets and connections on the back are the same, making it a seamless transition. 

The units are going to come in at $2799 with their three-in-one active Imaging HD transducer or $2599 with no transducer. 

The 10” unit also has two quick programmable keys on it, whereas the 9” has none and the 12” and 16” have four.

New Features

The new features on the HDS Pro unit relate to the charting, specifically sonar overlays on the charts. The Pro unit allows you to overlay the Scout mode onto the chart and also overlay ghost 360 onto the chart. This can be useful in giving a detailed mental picture of how the structure lays out and can be useful in patterning the fish around the lake.

hds pro chart overlay

The Scout mode overlay allows anglers to see in real-time fish swimming around the structure, and because it’s overlaid on the map, users will get an idea of how those fish are using the contour lines to position on the structure. This feature is particularly useful for areas with current or ledge fishing.

The Ghost 360 overlay allows anglers to see the cover and structure of the area they’re fishing in high detail. This can give a user a better mental picture of how the structure lays out, which can help them pattern the fish around the lake. The feature is limited by the fact that users cannot control their trolling motor while Ghost 360 is pivoting, which means it’s not a feature that will be used all the time.

Both of these features are most useful when scouting an area, rather than when actively fishing. The recommended use of these features is to put the trolling motor down, turn them on and watch the screen to see how the fish are relating to the structure and how the structure lays out.

HDS Pro Transducer: Active Imaging HD

Lowrance has recently launched its new active Imaging HD transducer, which brings chirp sonar to its Down and Side Imaging. This is a feature that the competition has been offering for several years, and it promises to give anglers the clearest images they’ve ever seen on a Lowrance side scan unit.

Comparison of New and Old Model Transducer

hds-pro-active imaging-hd-side-scan-comparison

The new active imaging HD transducer operates at 1075 kilohertz and offers a much more detailed and clearer image compared to the older active imaging transducer that operates at 800 kilohertz. This can be seen in the comparison shot provided, where the fine details in rock piles and structures are much more defined and not as fuzzy.

New Features and Transducer Designs

The HDs Pro series offers five new transducer designs that all support MHz side scan and down scan. These designs include:

  1. Active Imaging HD 2-in-1
  2. Active Imaging HD 3-in-1
  3. Active Imaging HD 3-in-1 Fish Reveal High Wide
  4. Active Imaging HD 3-in-1 Fish Reveal Medium Wide
  5. Active Imaging HD 3-in-1 Ghost Nosecone

The active imaging HD 3-in-1 provides side scan, down scan, and traditional sonar. And the active imaging HD 2-in-1 provides side and down scan but not traditional sonar. 

The 2-in-1 transducer is typically used on fiberglass boats such as bass boats and mounted higher on the transom, while the 3-in-1 would be better suited for aluminum boats as the transducer will be in the water at all times while the boat is on plane.

The active imaging HD three in one ghost nose cone is a higher detailed version of the nose cone, which should improve ghost 360 images.

Fish Reveal

The active Imaging HD 3-in-1 with fish reveal is another option, which comes in medium-wide and high-wide options. This feature takes the sonar arches that are seen and places them on the side scan, which can be helpful for identifying fish. 

You need to buy the S3100 sonar module additionally to access this feature. 

Upgrade Worthiness

If you have an older side scan product from Lowrance, it is definitely worth considering upgrading to the active imaging HD. The comparison between structure scan, active imaging side scan and active imaging HD side scan shows that with each generation, the image is getting clearer, more defined, and crisper, making it easier to identify structures. It is a huge upgrade over structure scan and even a total scan transducer or structurescan 3D transducer.

In addition to the side scan improvements, the active imaging HD will also benefit you on the down scan. The images provided by Lowrance show that the new transducer offers a much more defined and crisper image, especially in the bottom detail.

In conclusion, the new active imaging HD transducer by Lowrance offers a significant improvement over previous models and new features. The addition of megahertz frequencies, five new transducer designs, and improved ghost 360 images make it worth considering upgrading if you have an older side scan product.

Active Target 2

Let’s have a look at the new Active Target 2 system, which is now available with the Lowrance HDS Pro. It’s exciting to see how this system would compare to others on the market, particularly the offerings from Garmin.

First, I have to mention the new sonar views offered by the Active Target 2. With two systems, you have the ability to point the transducer at two different angles and see both on the screen at the same time. The Scout and Forward view gives you a clear picture of what is in front and behind your boat, while the Scout Wide view provides a wider angle and the 180 View allows you to see 180-degree view below the boat. These views are a game-changer for anyone looking to improve their fishing experience.

One of the most impressive aspects of the Active Target 2 is the image quality. Lowrance claims that this is the smoothest and highest resolution live sonar image they have ever produced and I have to agree. The images and video I viewed were incredibly clear and smooth, with little to no beam stitching, interference or ghosting. This is a huge improvement over the original Active Target system.

The downside to the Active Target 2 is that it requires two systems for the new sonar views to work, which can be quite costly. Additionally, the screen does have some dead space, which is a bit of a bummer.

Overall, I am extremely impressed with the Active Target 2 system and I would highly recommend it to anyone looking to improve their fishing experience. The new sonar views and improved image quality make it a worthy competitor to other systems on the market, particularly those offered by Garmin.