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Autopsy Article

Livingston’s Crank is a Real “Howeller” (continued)


We found the finish on the lure to be slightly above average when it came to durability. The finishes are decent and will hold up reasonably well to abrasion over time. The lip is pretty durable and reinforced on the bottom to stand up to impact with bottom structure.


The smartchip is a small PCB with a number of components

When I cut into this bait I was careful not to go too deep and risk damage to the electronic components. Once inside I found the heart of the system, the “Smart Chip,” which is a tiny PCB with a number of components which store and drive the baitfish sound. Connected to this PCB is a mass of wires which link to a pair of two tiny batteries on one end, and a small speaker on the other. The tiny speaker is placed at the front section of the lure directly behind a rattling bead to create a distinct sound.


A blue wrap secures two small batteries

This particular bait comes loaded with one tone, the original ESB sound which is the original tone that Livingston first introduced. This “EBS Original” is designed to imitate the sounds of a distressed baitfish and by putting both the front and rear hook hangers in the water the lure came to life. With the bait opened up the bait was much louder than you normally hear with the speaker totally enclosed and it sounds like an intermittent chirp. You can hear the actual autopsy bait here.


When both hook hangers are wet the lure turns on

While this bait only emits one sound the company has already introduced a “plus” version which gives anglers an assortment of four sounds to choose from. Livingston calls this their EBSMT technology which enables anglers to select tones including EBS original, EBS Craw, EBS Shad, and Silent to enhance their presentation. There is no physical switch on the “plus” bait and to change from sound-to-sound, anglers need simply submerge the bait in water to activate, hold the front line-tie and front hook hanger simultaneously and the lure will begin to cycle through tones.


The Livingston Howeller is a very advanced little bait but is just a taste of what is soon to come from Livingston

The Livingston Howeller is a cool bait, not because it is high-tech, but because it uses technology blended with proven bait design elements to create a lure with additional strike triggering elements. The Howeller can do what other cranks can but it also can do more. With the combination of a traditional rattle and digital EBS sounds this bait is designed to remain highly effective even in stained water where largemouth utilize sound to help them zone in on prey. The Howeller is a very advanced bait but is just a taste of what Livingston will soon introduce in the coming season, which includes a swimbait that you can customize sounds via bluetooth connection with your smartphone!

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