Crosslake, Minn. — Ice fishing leader Brian “Bro” Brosdahl sees things just a little differently. Like the deadeye sharpshooter or the saltwater flats guide who always spots shallow water bonefish first. Some say it’s the key to Bro’s legendary status—the hardwater MVP who’s always got a trick up his sleeve, a hot little lake no one’s discovered, or some super secret lure.
But if you ask Bro himself, he’ll tell you absolutely, what he sees below the ice and how he views the fish themselves makes all the difference in the world. “Last winter was an absolute blast,” exclaimed the ever-admired fishing guide. “Through the big beautiful HD screen, my clients and I had so much fun watching perch, big bluegills, walleyes and everything else swimming down below. Learned a ton, too.”
Bro recalls buying one of the first underwater cameras ever built — an Aqua-Vu — over twenty years ago. “It was incredible seeing for the first time ever what was actually happening beneath the surface. I’ve used a camera every year since. Gotta tell you, though, when Aqua-Vu put one of their new HDi systems in my hands last winter it was like the first time I watched an IMax movie — total wow factor. The underwater images were incredibly bright and colorful. In clear water, the HD10i screen looked like something out of National Geographic — blue-green water and vivid, lively fish. Man, I could even see all the little underwater details: flecks of glow paint on my spoon, greens, reds and browns in leafy vegetation. Even the eyeballs on crayfish stared right back at you.”
New for the 2017-18 ice fishing season, Aqua-Vu designed four high-definition underwater viewing systems. Brosdahl’s aforementioned HD10i Pro features a 10-inch LCD — the largest camera screen available, paired with high-definition underwater optics. Each new Aqua-Vu — HD10i Pro, HD10i, HD7i Pro and HD7i — features an advanced, reconfigured XD Camera Housing. The versatile new camera allows the user to instantly connect any number of XD accessories via a Quick Attachment slide-rail. LED floodlights, trolling fins, an attachment for a telescopic pole, and Aqua-Vu’s Live Strike set-up give users an exciting, modular array of viewing options.
“Aqua-Vu invented the concept of down-viewing — pointing the lens toward the lake floor to get a bird’s eye view on fish,” notes Bro. “The new XD Camera Housing lets me aim the optics in any direction I want. For sight-fishing big panfish, down-viewing is ideal. I can see everything: fish coming from all angles and levels and how they’re acting, activity-wise to different jigging moves. When a real tanker perch or wide-body bluegill comes in to investigate, you see it on screen, and the adrenaline really gets pumping.”
Utilizing a specialized light-gathering lens, the Aqua-Vu HD camera lens provides a crystal-clear aquatic picture, even in lower light conditions. “I took the Aqua-Vu 10i to stained water lakes last winter and sight-fished where no one thought it was possible,” Bro marvels. “We saw crappies 30 feet deep on portions of Lake of the Woods, even in the evening. I’ve never seen a camera capable of clarifying those conditions.”
Connected to a 7- or 10-inch color LCD, these high definition camera systems include 75 or 125 feet of rugged cable and integrated, adjustable infrared lighting. The HD10i Pro and HD7i Pro both offer real-time digital displays of water temperature, depth and camera direction; the HD10i Pro also features TouchZoom technology for magnifying any segment of the screen. One other elite feature: All Aqua-Vu HDi units now sport detachable LCDs that are RAM mount compatible for direct wiring in a boat or wheeled fish house.
“You might think you’ve used a camera before and seen all you needed to see,” Bro asserts. “But these HD systems take things underwater to whole new levels of awesome. You’ll see the subsurface world like never before. I fish every available day and still learn new things via the Aqua-Vu screen. Not only that, when you watch a big fish bite, it’s like you’re a kid again — laughing out loud way out in the middle of a frozen lake. How can you beat that?”
Available at major outdoor retailers in early winter, the new Aqua-Vu HDi Underwater Viewing Systems come with everything you need to find and study the fish you seek — all in spectacular HD color and clarity. With a suggested retail prices starting at $599.99, these high definition cameras include LCD monitor, XD Camera, 12-volt battery and battery charger and a custom soft carrying bag. For more information, visit www.aquavu.com.