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DeepVision DE340 Side Scan Sonar System Review  

by Jim Kennard

DeepVision DE340 Side Scan Sonar System Review  

DeepVision DE340 Project mode screen views
Sand Waves in Hudson River
Old shipwreck remains in Hudson River
Three Masted Schooner in Lake Ontario
Steamer Arizona remains in St. Lawrence River
Unknown object in St Lawrence River
Admiralty Anchor in Hudson River

For the past year I have been using the DeepVision DE340 Side Scan Sonar with the DeepView SE software.  I have operated DeepVision system in the deep depths of Lake Ontario, the swift waters of the St. Lawrence River and in the murky depths of the Hudson River.  The results that we had in each of these very different marine environments were outstanding.   DeepVision has designed the DE340 side scan sonar system with all the features needed to conduct professional geophysical surveys but also made it very affordable for the serious shipwreck enthusiast.


Here are some of the advantages and features that I believe are worthy of consideration.
The DeepView SE software provides excellent flexibility for viewing sonar scans, nautical maps, and target information.  In the Project Mode specific views can be chosen as desired by the operator. These views include: the active scan, magnified view of a scanned target, nautical map, listing of scan files and markers, signal strength over entire range, and an overview of the active scan file.  The windows of all of these views can be resized or hidden to suit the preference of the sonar survey operator.  Switch to the Scan Mode to view just the active scan or Map Mode to view only the nautical map. 
The DE340 side scan system has been designed for high resolution sonar imagery at a frequency of 340 kHz with a range capability of 200 meters (660 ft).  At this frequency, DeepVision has designed highly efficient transducers with higher resolution that achieve the same range as other manufactures that are using lower frequencies.  Another key factor for the excellent resolution is that the DeepVision towfish has a horizontal beamwidth of only 0.9 degrees.  Some of the sonar images that we have obtained were equal or better than those of other sonar systems that offer a 2nd higher frequency in their towfish, but with a very limited range. Excellent high resolution is very important in determining that an underwater target is something worth investigating.
GPS Position: 
Integrated into the operation of the DeepVision software is the input of GPS positioning data that is updated every second.  The current position of the boat is displayed in the lower left side of the screen and an indication of all of the GPS received satellites is shown in a small a bar graph in the lower right.  Placing the cursor anywhere on the screen will provide the exact position on the bottom of a sonar target.  Other side scan sonar manufacturers will only provide the boat position down the center of the screen.  This feature has been a tremendous asset for us to quickly determine the precise location of underwater targets or interesting bottom features.
Color Mapping Controls
There are several controls that allow the user to change the scan to one of seven different grayscale color selections.  Three color mapping controls allow for incremental adjustment of the slope, black, and white levels of the sonar scans.  The appearance of the scan can also be brightened or darkened with the associated control buttons.
Target Analysis Tools:
The Zoom tool provides up to 4X magnification of a scan image.
The Measure Distance tool allows the user to measure the distance in any direction on the sonar scan image or between points on the nautical map.
The Measure Height tool is utilized to determine the height of a target off the bottom with just a few clicks of the mouse.
Marking a Target
When the Marker Mode button is activated each left click of the mouse will add a marker in both the sonar scan and nautical map.  Markers can be named and each has the Lat-Lon position automatically recorded in the marker window.  This feature has been extremely helpful in returning to targets quickly for additional scanning or for a diving related inspection.
Creating a Mosaic of Scans
The ability to create a scan mosaic of the bottom is a very important feature when conducting a professional geophysical survey of an area.  There are associated tools that provide adjustments that allow the scans to line up consistently with each other.  The Layback feature is one of these tools that will provide a correction to the actual position of the scan based on the distance from the GPS antenna to that of the towfish.
 Exporting Scan Files and Images
A single scan image in the png format or a complete scan XTF file can be exported very easily with just a click of a button.
DeepVision has created a side scan sonar system that provides both excellent high resolution imagery and range capability with all the features that meet the needs of the professional geophysical surveyor but at a cost that the shipwreck enthusiast can also afford.  I have been operating side scan sonar systems for over 35 years and it is my opinion that the DeepVision DE340 is the best valued side scan sonar system on the market today.    For additional details visit the DeepVision website: 


14 User Reviews

anonymous by tamer demırcı on 4/5/2011
pls suggest me the prıce of de 340
Please contact Deepvision directly for the latest price on the DE340
DeepVision contact page:
anonymous by Wolfgang Falch on 8/5/2012
Excellent review Jim, Thank you! Our company SANDY AIR CORP has been using the DE340 from Deep Vision for the past 4 years parallel to units from other manufacturers. There is just no other side scan sonar out there that provides comparable good results unless you are willing to pay more than ten times the price of the Deep Visions unit ...
Hi Jim,i have some questions for you about DE340.

1) Here in italy we are looking for deep wreck in the range 100/200, towfish max depht is 100 mt,is it working depht or test depht ... in few word,may us push depht limit to 150 with proper cable lenght,to say a number?

2) About cable lenght,with rule 1/3 (to reach 100 we need 300),how max is usable w/out signal loss?

3) Long cable in deep waters are a pita ... have you notice about portable winches for kevlar cable (manual or electrical 12/24 V)?

4) last one,have you straight email to Deepvision ?


Hi Max,

1) I have had the DE340 in a depth of 120m. See the sonar image of the Steamer Onondata on this website:

However, I would suggest that you talk with Deepvision about exceeding the specified working depth limit of 100m.

2) You can tow high off the bottom and see large shipwrecks. The amount of cable needed will depend on the size of the shipwreck, depth, and operating speed of the boat. I would not depend on "rule 1/3" for the cable length that you will require. Please contact DeepVision regarding the maximum usable cable length without signal loss.

3) I don't have any suggestions on cable winches.

4) DeepVision email contact:

5) You can contact me directly at:

Hope this helps,
Hi Jim,got sell department email,i'm writing them (are they still in businness?)

How do you manage long cable (and how much long is the cable on your system)?

Hi Max,
Yes, Deepvision is a very active in selling side scan sonar units worldwide. However, you will not see advertisements for them in the trade magazines because they are very successful in obtaining business from the good recommendations they get from their existing customers.

I use a 200m cable.
DS by DS on 11/5/2012
Hi Jim
Does the fish have to follow the seabed or do you keep a constant depth ? In case, how do you control the depth ?
The depth of the towfish is a function of how much cable you have out, weight of the towfish, and the speed of the boat. You can change the depth of the towfish by letting more or less cable out or adjusting the speed of the boat. You do not have to keep the towfish at a constant distance from the bottom. Adjust the depth of the towfish so that you can see a good portion of the bottom on the display. The bottom depth can change a great amount and you will still get great images without making any depth adjustments to the towfish depth. Hope this helps.
anonymous by waseem on 5/12/2014
is there Deepeye 340/680 duel frequency in the company ? if yes than give me detail about it
anonymous by ErlandHansen on 3/20/2015
The DeepVision has released a dual frequency DE3468DE in October 2014

anonymous by laakti on 8/10/2016

Hello. I´m going to buy that 340 but now i do wonder those your pictures from lake, in what kind weather you have done that scanning? I mean there is a lot of wave effect or something in that bottom line so that quality of image is not anymore so good (compare photos in deepvision web page). I´m using humminbird at the moment and i can get same quality with HB orginal SI sonar as in your pictures. I just think is there any reason to spend a lot of money if i can´t get any more info from pic.?

In general we like to search in fair weather with wave heights less than 2 ft. We are using a small 22 ft dive boat without much protection. See boat pics from our shipwreck articles. We also have a Hummingbird on the boat. The HB can make good pictures in calm seas up to typically a depth of 75 ft. The problem is that the transducers are mounted to the boat and any boat movement by waves causes distortion with the images. When you tow a side scan there is much less effect on the sonar image with movement of the boat due to wave action. The closer to the bottom you are with the sonar sensors the better sonar imagery you get as compared to attached to the boat at the surface. The thermocline layer can also limit your sonar range when the transducers are mounted on the boat as with the HB. We always try to tow under the thermocline layer which is now at its deepest during mid-summer. The Deepvision DE-340 is a good value for the $$$. It has been doing an excellent job for us since 2009. Hope this helps. Jim

anonymous by laakti on 8/10/2016

My last boat was also 22ft and now I do have 26ft boat (3000lb) and it still rolling a lot so i know what you mean. Usually i do just record data and i will check those in my home with deepview free viewer (HB+that viewer is very good combination) but its very hard to find bigger parts of old woodwrecks from 70ft to 90ft what are lie down smooth on bottom but single wood parts i can find easy, even depth is near of 90 (of course that sea must be very calm in that case). But those single parts are also good data, i do mark every part, find center point of those marks and that is point for diving. I have planned kind of arm what would stable that rolling effect to sonar and i do hope that i can do test run before winter. It it works as planned, it gives much bigger tolerance for that weather to make good side imaging data. Thank you of your answer, i still think that i´m going to buy that DE-340

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