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TType86

Marcum LX5 vs. vexilar FL-20


O.K. here goes again. I am only doing this because when i was trying to figure out last year which one to buy. it was rediculous trying to figure out which one. I ended up going with the fl20. I do love that thing. but i have only used one flasher in my life. that is my fl20. i would like to ask to please keep this post to ONLY a comarison of the fl20 and the lx5. because lets face it guys. if money is no object for you like it is me when purchasing a flasher. these are the two to compare. not saying im rich, just saying i want the best when i buy a gadget like this. and i dont want to wish i got something better. like i said i already have the fl20. but, i just ordered the lx5 yesterday. i wanted to have 2 units because everytime i take a buddy, they hog my fl20. i want them to like ice fishing so i let them use it. I have only been using a flasher for less than a year. i am in no way biased towards any one of them. I am going to use the two side by side, no B.S. in comparing the two. i am curious to see if the super fine line works the way i hope it does. my vexilar seems like i have to have the gain up so that my jig is showing up as a blob. i cant tell when the fish is exactly on the bait. it works. but id personally like more separation. and thats what it boils down to. if the marcum can do that. who cares about other stuff. and the zoom will rarely EVER be used other than the bottom 6 or 12 feet, so who cares that the marcum zooms in to anywhere in the column. its a freaking horrible experience trying to read and decide between the two for someone who wants to purchase a flasher. im going to do my own comparison in open water. then on the ice. i will continue to post my findings as the ice season gets closer. like i said. the main thing is TARGET SEPARATION when using a flasher. point blank. and as long as you have a good readable screen in sunlight, and can zoom in on bottom so many feet, and see your jig well on top of that. you have yourself a good unit. Again, mainly i want to be able to see my jig as a thin line that doesnt blink and fade out. and be able to distinguish just how close to my jig a fish really is. and how many fish are there not a big blur. i can see my jig real well with the vex. but seems i have to have it as a thick green line to keep it their without blinking off and on. thats when its INSIDE the cone angle no matter what size jig. with 12 and 19 degree ducer at any depth. if a marcum can beat the vex in those aspects, what more is there to talk about. ill switch and sell my vex, end of freakin story. if they are both the same. i guess i will stick with vexilar because of the name and how long all their units last. marcum may last just as long. but i have no way of knowing that yet. as they havnt been a key player in the flasher world as long as vex.

shaley

Re: Marcum LX5 vs. vexilar FL-20


You will love the fine line and your buddies will be hogging the LX and you'll be stuck with the blob 20.

James HolstAdministrator

Re: Marcum LX5 vs. vexilar FL-20


The Super Fineline works exactly as advertised. You'll definitely enjoy the side-by-side comparison of the two units. When given a fair try, side by side like you're doing now, you rarely hear of anyone opting for the Vex. Not that the Vex is a bad unit. It isn't. The LX5 is just better in a couple key areas.

Have fun kicking the tires and making your own choice. Unless your zipcode puts you a lot further north than mine we still have quite a bit of waiting to do for first ice.

--------------------
James Holst
In-Depth Outdoors Pro Staff
In-Depth Outdoors TV - Watch Episodes Online Here!
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kruger

Re: Marcum LX5 vs. vexilar FL-20


WOW! Is it that close to ice fishing season again to start the battle? But on a serious note I would have gone witht the marcum just because they are so similar, but I love marcums service! I have one camera and one flasher from them and love them both.

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If people focused on whats important in life there would be a shortage of fishing rods.

I believe you should always give 99% that way there is always room to get better


TType86

Re: Marcum LX5 vs. vexilar FL-20


Quote:

unless your zipcode puts you a lot further north than mine we still have quite a bit of waiting to do for first ice.




yes, ice fishing is far away for me too. but i cant help it. sometimes i really wish i lived in minnesota. i love ice fishing!!! cant wait to start this comparison. for the record, im not bashing vex. if it sounds that way. i just want the truth, and i wont feel bad to tell the truth about these 2 units. like i said, i just got sick of all the b.s. i will agree. having ANY flasher is better than NO flasher. you have to have one. i would never ice fish without one, PERIOD...


James HolstAdministrator

Re: Marcum LX5 vs. vexilar FL-20


You're definitely in a situation to figure out which unit is best for you given you own one of each.

--------------------
James Holst
In-Depth Outdoors Pro Staff
In-Depth Outdoors TV - Watch Episodes Online Here!
---------------------



Francisco de la Rosa IV

Re: Marcum LX5 vs. vexilar FL-20


"but id personally like more separation. and thats what it boils down to. if the marcum can do that."

you will love the LX-5!

FDR

--------------------
Francisco de la Rosa IV

Life is not measured by the number of breaths you take, but by the number of moments that take your breath away.

Luck is when preparation meets opportunity!


56twister

Re: Marcum LX5 vs. vexilar FL-20


TType86
Welcome to IDO


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If you don't stand behind our troops feel free to stand in front of them.


TType86

Re: Marcum LX5 vs. vexilar FL-20


thanks everyone. i will be finding out soon. i appreciate the replies. isnt it great to have both these 2 companies competing. it only benefits us that they both make good units. theyll just keep getting better.

Kooty

Re: Marcum LX5 vs. vexilar FL-20


I just stumbled onto a unit you may want to take into consideration. I know little to nothing about them, but they look like a 3rd competitor has entered the market. All good for us.

Hummingbird ICE-55

Good luck!!

--------------------
I was born in the 70's, grew up in 80's, made my mistakes in 90's now I'm just trying to make up for lost time.

John


Chris Granrud

Re: Marcum LX5 vs. vexilar FL-20


Isn't it funny how flashers have changed the ice fishing world. Flashers are the single most deadly piece of equipment a ice fisherman can own. Before it was cool many of serious anglers were lugging out Green Boxes, and hauling in fish. Many people still considered flasher technology "Witchcraft" at that point. I used to use an older model hummingbird flasher which Definatley lacked SEPERATION, but at the same time played a key role especially when searching panfish. In todays world no doubt Marcum and Vexilar make excellent products. I've always owned Vexilar products, and personally haven't noticed any problems understanding the whereabouts of fish in relation to my bait. In all honesty it was only last year that I switched from my FL8 to an 18. I have watched 20's in action, and frankly wasn't sold that it would put anymore fish in my bucket than my 18... I enjoy the intensity levels of marks moving in on my vexilar, and am very accustomed to reading it. I guess endless hours hovered over it in a dim shack has drawn us closer together. After all I do miss that little hum of the vex and sucking in some propane fumes from a slight leak in the Mr. Heater!! LOL!! I am less interested in the minor seperation differences between the units, and more interested in interference comparisons myself. I believe both units will perform outstanding, but when I'm running big groups I have noticed interference can be a big problem. I've got used to blocking out the whirly bird junk on my older unit, but how do you think the Marcum handles interference in comparison. Let me know!! Oh by the way Money is a concern for me though!!! So.... If you don't like your fl20 I'd be willing to barter!!

Kooty

Re: Marcum LX5 vs. vexilar FL-20


The green box, . I pre-fished an RCL tourney with a guy who had an old green box mounted on the console of his $40K+ lund. He watched that thing like a hawk. More than his 10 inch Lowrance. He said he moved that thing from boat to boat ever other year.

So I completely agree, can't imagine fishing without a flasher anymore. No matter what brand it is.

--------------------
I was born in the 70's, grew up in 80's, made my mistakes in 90's now I'm just trying to make up for lost time.

John


CNY Tim

Re: Marcum LX5 vs. vexilar FL-20


TType86, Welcome aboard. If target separation is what you are after you will love the razor thin display in Super fineline. I use that feature not only for detecting bottom hugging fish but also for isolating the larger fish in suspended schools. Even if you only plan on using the Zoom on the bottom it is nice to have the flexibility to move it anywhere in the water column and there is a big difference in how each brand's zoom functions work. The Zoom on a MarCum uses an optical zoom. It actually increases the target separation to less that 3/4 of an inch. On a Vex, they use a digital zoom that just blows up the already 2.65" target separation onto the opposite side of the screen. Anglers that have consistent success know that the difference is in the details, and detail is exactly what your MarCum LX-5 delivers! You're going to love it.

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Pro Staff
MarCum Technologies


Chris Tuckner

Re: Marcum LX5 vs. vexilar FL-20


We often fish multiple lines in my Otter with the kids inside. You are able to tell which line is which, and which will get bit when that time comes. LX-5 with SFL is awesome!
It is truly what separates the Marcum from the Vex in my book.


Scenic

Re: Marcum LX5 vs. vexilar FL-20


I guess the big difference for me was the fact that Vexilar was willing to offer me 4 years of warranty. That to me says a lot about their units. Any time I have had any dealings with their customer service it has been positive.

As for target separation I guess I really dont care what, digital, optical, a monkey hanging down there measuring or whatever they use to do it as long as it gets done. Marcum claims .75 and the FL-20 claims .50 target ID. We are talking a .25 difference. Marcum claims a 2.15 target separation (on the 20 scale which was failed to be mentioned) and Vexilar claims a 2.65 target separation over all. What is Marcums over all in all the scales? Again, both units convert that data some how but I really dont care how as long as they do it.

I like the transducer system better on the Vex as I do not have the have it sitting over my hole to use it. The Marcum you have to have it sitting right over the hole so that the transducer will hang right. With the Vexilar I may have it 2 way or sitting on top of a bucket so I do not have to stare down at the unit all day. I can also change holes with the Vexilar unit simply by moving my transducer from one to the other and never move my unit.

I have used a Vex in the past and can not complain about its durability. That thing has been knocked around, banged up and just plain beat. In all the time I have used a Vex I had to send in one for a burnt out light.

I have also owned/used the LX3 and LX5s. I can not say I have had that kind of luck with the Marcum units. First unit had a bad battery, second unit had a bad transducer, bad charger and a broken transducer arm. All those were right out of the box or within days of it being a new unit. And the Marcum only comes with a two year warranty. Yes they stood behind them, when you could reach them by phone, but I was still caught on the lake without a unit to use those days and had to wait to get it either replaced or repaired.

Each of them have their own features and each will assist you in putting more fish on the ice. For me I want one that I can depend on to work time after time without me babying it and IF I need service I want to know that I can get it when I want it done.

Some drive a Ford, some drive a Dodge but I drive a Chevrolet. Some use a Marcum but I will use a Vexilar.

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sctackle@paulbunyan.net


BrianKAdministrator

Re: Marcum LX5 vs. vexilar FL-20


You guys ever compare the Marcum 825c color camera to any of the Vex units?

No comparison.

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Scenic

Re: Marcum LX5 vs. vexilar FL-20


Quote:

You guys ever compare the Marcum 825c color camera to any of the Vex units?

No comparison.




Two totally different tools. But since you asked I actually have compared them. The Vex works in clear, cloudy and even stained water. It even works great at night and in low light conditions or through the ice.

The 825c works great in clear water and marginal at best during low light conditions and very poorly in stained water.

So you are right, there is no comparison. I can use the Vex in all water conditions

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sctackle@paulbunyan.net


BrianKAdministrator

Re: Marcum LX5 vs. vexilar FL-20


Oh...I forgot Vex doesn't have a camera.

Just wanted to see if you were a die hard Ford fan.

--------------------
Please visit our valued sponsors
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Scenic

Re: Marcum LX5 vs. vexilar FL-20


Quote:

Oh...I forgot Vex doesn't have a camera.




No they don't but do they need one?


Ford fan? Not a chance BUT just like the Marcum I have tested/drove a Ford as well. I will continue to be a GM/Vex fan.

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sctackle@paulbunyan.net


Kooty

Re: Marcum LX5 vs. vexilar FL-20


I had a lot of respect for you Jeff until you said GM. FORD rules!! I don't care what flasher you run though.

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I was born in the 70's, grew up in 80's, made my mistakes in 90's now I'm just trying to make up for lost time.

John


Scenic

Re: Marcum LX5 vs. vexilar FL-20


This is Chev country up here. They are like a Timex...take a licking and keep on ticking.

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sctackle@paulbunyan.net


Whatsa

Re: Marcum LX5 vs. vexilar FL-20


I'm looking forward to your findings.... Keep us posted on your findings. I would also like to have a second unit for friends that I can talk into going with me ice fishing......I think the key is a flasher what ever kind it is or what ever you can afford is the KEY....they are both good units once they fish with a flasher they are hooked. It's much easier to get them to go with me and split the gas next time I want to go..... LOL Whatsa

Whatsa

Re: Marcum LX5 vs. vexilar FL-20


Ohhh Yeah.... I'm driving a GM now.....they were giving them away with the gas prices the way they are.....LOL

Whatsa


shaley

Re: Marcum LX5 vs. vexilar FL-20


Quote:

I had a lot of respect for you Jeff until you said GM. FORD rules!! I don't care what flasher you run though.




Kooty I just lost all respect for you, I thought you was better than a Ford. Bowtie Till I Die :


Kooty

Re: Marcum LX5 vs. vexilar FL-20


That's funny cuz most people lose respect for me shortly after I meet them.

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I was born in the 70's, grew up in 80's, made my mistakes in 90's now I'm just trying to make up for lost time.

John


linedrive

Re: Marcum LX5 vs. vexilar FL-20


I can't believe it's October 2 and I'm writing this but so be it...I am a fan of my LX flashers. I'm tired of the same old rhetoric about these products. It's not simply Chev vs Ford...I've owned 'em both and both vehicles were good all the features compare and the cost is similar. I owned both Marcum and the Vex too. I own 2 Marcums....an LX3 and an LX5. I made the switch from the Vex model for two reasons....I prefer US products when they compare feature vs $ and after I used an LX3 side by side with a vex on a trip to Wigwam the LX3 was by far easier to read and it marked targets better than the Vex brand period. The 2nd reason is why so many former vex anglers switched to Marcum. I don't know any serious angler who'd use a Marcum if they thought it wasn't the best choice to help them catch fish in any situation right out of the box. You don't need an education on how to use a Marcum you don't need suppression cables and upcharges for ducer options or jiggle stick holders. Both of my Marcums work fine. Neither has needed a repair. If they do need a repair I know Marcum has great service. If I was a guy wondering if Marcum is all they say, and it is, I'd get a Marcum and fish with it. If you don't like it return it and get a Vex. Most stores have a 30-day return policy....see for yourself the Marcum is easier to use, it marks targets more effectively and it's a product of the USA.

Joel NelsonAdministrator

Re: Marcum LX5 vs. vexilar FL-20


There's alot of terminology here, but in the end, it's all about which features translate into more and bigger fish on the ice. While it may seem like splitting hairs, there's a huge difference between optical (Marcum) vs. digital (Vex) zoom.

Take the picture of your last big fish. The one you took with that disposable kodak that's been in the bottom of your fishhouse all winter. Hold the picture at arms length. Now hold it close to your face. You just accomplished the same feat as Vex. digital zoom. It's the same data at different scales.

With the Marcum, just as with any optical zoom on a digital camera, the unit doesn't just make the picture closer. It's like having the picture of your last big fish taken by a professional photographer, AND being able to view it close up. Lines are crisper, brighter, and ultimately allow you discern more about what's below you.

What does this mean? If you're a crappie fisherman, it means instead of one or two "hot blobs" you see several distinct targets, even when close to one another. You see the size structure of the school, the small hyperactive fish stacked on top, and the larger fish you're trying to target below them. With the adjustable zoom anywhere in the water column on the LX-5, along with superfineline, you're doing what no vex owner can.

How about bottom hugging walleye in weeds/rock? Again, the better target separation with the optical zoom provides a distinct advantage, esp. in cover.

Joel

--------------------
Joel Nelson - Ice Pro Staff
joel.nelson@in-depthoutdoors.com



linedrive

Re: Marcum LX5 vs. vexilar FL-20


Well said Joel.

Bosman

Re: Marcum LX5 vs. vexilar FL-20


With all due respect to both the Marcum and Vexilar models, the GM & Fords, and various opinions by all - why doesn't the Lowrance X67C or LMS-522C Ice Machines get any attention in these types of dicussions? And yes......I realize the thread subject doesn't specifically spell out the products I mention....

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Cuz that's what the Bos says..........


James HolstAdministrator

Re: Marcum LX5 vs. vexilar FL-20


Quote:

why doesn't the Lowrance X67C or LMS-522C Ice Machines get any attention in these types of dicussions?




I guess I'll go out on a limb here and just point out that most that have tried them side-by-side find them to be a poor substitute for a flasher. Some guys like them. Most do not. Therefor they rarely get mentioned in serious discussions about ice electronics.

--------------------
James Holst
In-Depth Outdoors Pro Staff
In-Depth Outdoors TV - Watch Episodes Online Here!
---------------------



Bosman

Re: Marcum LX5 vs. vexilar FL-20


Fair enough.....
As you probably guessed I'm the owner of the Lowrance product. Price & flexibility heavily influenced the purchase decision 2 years ago. I've never used a Marcum flasher. My expeirence with a Vexilar is limited to borrowing an old college buddies unit on Lake Mendota perch fishing years ago. With that said - I'm satisfied with Lowrance unit. A relatively inexpensive unit I can use in the boat on the open water and on the ice during the hard water season.

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Cuz that's what the Bos says..........


BrianKAdministrator

Re: Marcum LX5 vs. vexilar FL-20


Quote:

I've never used a Marcum flasher.




Trust me...don't try one of the Marcum's or the new Vex's for that matter...it will cost you money!

--------------------
Please visit our valued sponsors
Team Catfish
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BrianK's Trophy Cat Fishing and Sturgeon Adventures<<
2013 Photo Gallery<<
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Scenic

Re: Marcum LX5 vs. vexilar FL-20


A locator is a tool. It not only helps you tell depth but also helps to locate and put fish on the ice. Anytime you can use that tool it will help you enjoy your day on the ice much better. Sometimes we all have to make due with the tools we have or have access to at the time. What you are really trying to do no matter what unit you use is to know what is happening beneath you.

I have tried the Lowrance products and they do not offer many of the features that the Vexilar or Marcum units offer. These units offer much better target separation and give you a better view of what it happening below you when used through the ice.

Perhaps the most used feature that I use in my Vexilar is the bottom zoom features. With the FL-18 I can zoom in the bottom 6 while with the FL-20 I can zoom either the bottom 6 or 12. For my style of fishing that is perfect. I do not need any other zoom features then that.

It is all in what you are happy with, what you can afford and what your style of fishing is. Any locator is a better tool then not having one at all. I remember the days when I used to use my Bottom Line graph through the ice. Was it perfect? Not even close but at the time that is what I could afford and it did what I needed it to do until I could up-grade to a Vexilar unit.

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sctackle@paulbunyan.net


linedrive

Re: Marcum LX5 vs. vexilar FL-20


Agreed both Vex and Marcum have better solutions for the ice fisherman...the Vex won't zoom on suspended fish...fish above 12 feet from the bottom...For instance I fish many lakes where crappies and sunnies suspend about 20 feet down over 40-45 feet of basin.....the Marcum will allow you to zoom in on the suspended fish and the Vex will not. Last year I found these mid level basin fish from mid December thru mid March....I want my $500 tool to provide me as many usable features as possible..... But I'm a ice fishing geek who has to get the most bang for my buck...The Marcum LX5 is the most versatile flasher out there...it's the contractor tool...the Caddy of flashers....

TType86

Re: Marcum LX5 vs. vexilar FL-20


ok. sorry i havnt been around a comp. in a while. got the lx5. was very surprised to see the MUCH better clarity of this unit. and it is actually brighter than the fl20. played around a LITTLE with it off my deck to my pond but havnt had chance to really use it yet. i was much more pleased so far with the display. WOW. and the size of my jig was able to be gotten much smaller of a line without fading which i prefer. thinking about using it with a suction cup mount on my jon boat to test it out be4 ice. one question. the transducer is a little rough on bottom. not smooth and shiny like most with the exception of the vexilar ice ducer. it is shiny but just looks smudged or rough in spots. it looks like its not meant to be that way. should i worry about this. and yah, that soft pack is sweet.

Edited by TType86 (10/09/08 04:39 PM)


Luke Haugland

Re: Marcum LX5 vs. vexilar FL-20


Your transducer is fine, all lx-5's come with a coating on the bottom of the ducer. I believe it is for protecting the bottom face of the transducer...but I could be wrong. You have nothing to worry about either way though...

Glad you like your new marcum- Just wait til you get er on ice!!


CNY Tim

Re: Marcum LX5 vs. vexilar FL-20


TType86 - the coating on the ducer is no biggy. I remember my first LX-3 had the highly polished ceramic disk, looked like glass and all my other MarCum's after that have the brushed look coating you described. Yea TType86 the LX-5 kicks @ss in the grass, no better unit fishing heavy cover. You will find it to be the top of the line flasher of it's time for performance, value, and ease of operation. You'll love your LX-5!

--------------------
Pro Staff
MarCum Technologies


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