Last year, Terry penned a short piece on the assault of the LCR unit on the early depthfinder market, focusing on the Bottom Line units in particular. Commenting on their shortfalls, Terry wrote, “By 1988 liquid crystal displays were taking over the world, and a lot of anglers weren’t too happy about it. The units had bad resolution and the computing power needed in order to run them just wasn’t state-of-the-art. But that didn’t stop companies from completely bailing on the old tried and true technologies such as flashers and paper graphs.”
Today we feature another Bottom Line ad from just a few years later (very early 90s), and look back at some interesting developments in the world of electronics.
If you’ll read closely through the full advertisement (click to enlarge), you’ll find some interesting developments that were in the making, things we kind of take for granted today. For example, if you remember the large screen Bottom Line units, they were one of the first of that size on the market. The ad states that the TBL300 model display screen (in the picture), “is the largest in the industry, 6-3/4×3-5/8. Who else offers over 30,000 total pixel display?” Looking at the commonplace units today boasting 10,” 12″ and even larger display screens, that sub-7-inch (EDIT: just over 7.5″ measured diagonally, very large for the time) display seems pretty mundane now 20 years down the road.
Another interesting thing I noticed is that the term “grayline” was trademarked by Lowrance. At the time I never even realized it, but it was very commonly used (along with a competitors “whiteline”).
Lastly of interest, and as they stated “best of all,” your TBL could be sent back to the factory and updated every time they came out with a feature for just $49.00 plus $5.00 shipping. Again, while that was a pretty neat deal at the time, looking at the technology development we now have, using MMC cards to get free updates from Humminbird, Lowrance, etc. using your computer online and simply uploading them in minutes to your unit, gives one a good idea of just how far we have come in a little over two decades.
BTW, anybody know who Ernie Jackson was?