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Shimano Stradic FK Spinning Reel Review
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DUO Realis Onimasu Swimbait Review
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First Look Inside Shimano's New Compact Curado
 


 


Reel Review


Peak Performance on a Budget? Pinnacle's Producer XT 30 Spinning Reel

 

Date: 6/21/15
Tackle type: Reel
Manufacturer: Pinnacle
Reviewer: Wolbugger






Total Score: 8.31 - GREAT

Introduction:
Some love em, some hate em, but spinning reels have always been a necessity in my arsenal whether pursuing freshwater or saltwater species. They offer such a tremendous advantage in certain situations that I can't imagine not having them at my disposal. While current spinning reel prices have reached stratospheric heights, it doesn't cost a small fortune to own one with some great performance. Sneaking in well under the one-hundred dollar mark, the affordable Pinnacle Producer XT spinning reels are both easy on the eyes and the wallet. Despite some ominous competition, just how well does this reel fare in real-world situations? We nabbed a PRF 30 model from Tackle Warehouse to find out for ourselves!

 

Pinnacle Producer XT PRF 30 Specifications

Line Capacity (lbs / yds)

170 yards of 8 pound / 120 yards of 12 pound

Gear Ratio 5.1:1
Weight 9.9 ounces
Handle Length 57 millimeters
Number of Bearings 7 + 1
Bearings Per Knob 2 bushings
Roller Guide Bearings 1 bearing
Origin China
MSRP $79.99


The producer XT showcases an attractive and sleek look.

Quality/Construction: There are many things to complain about in life, but the build quality of our Producer XT isn't one of them. The RCF2 (Reinforced Carbon-Fiber) graphite body and rotor, along with the machined-aluminum spool are all dressed in a tasteful blend of gunmetal, silver, and red. Upon close examination, the reel exhibits nice fit and finish mostly free of abnormalities. The only imperfections I found were a couple of slightly-less-than-precise edges, but those weren't noticeable without an extremely close inspection.


The spool features generous line capacity for up to twelve-pound line.

Quality Ratings For Pinnacle Producer XT PRF 30

Finish
(1–5)

Frame & Sideplate Tolerance(1–5)

Handle Tolerance (1–5)

Knob Tolerance (1–5)

Total

Possible

Rating (= Tot/Pos *10)

4

4

3

4

15

20

7.50


The body of the reel is slim in design.

Similar to the reel's attractive looks, the knob and handle elicit no major issues. There is a tiny amount of play in the handle assembly when wiggled, however when reeling everything feels satisfying.

Performance: The Pinnacle tagged along with me to a plethora of destinations ranging from local lakes, to sweltering Atlantic beaches, to the deep, cool waters of Lake Lanier, Georgia. The chosen lines were 20-pound Sufix and 10-pound Spiderwire braided lines, as well as a brief stint with 8-pound mono.


The Pinnacle will produce on inshore saltwater, too.

Retrieve: Inside of the Pinnacle there are 7 double-shielded stainless steel ball bearings, plus one roller bearing. Turning the handle won't win any awards for extreme smoothness, but the Producer will please the vast majority of users. Although the overall feel is good and tight, I can still discern a hint of the inner gearing upon retrieve. The 5.1:1 gearing is on the lower side compared to, say, the 6.2:1 of the Shimano Sahara or Sedona 2500FD's, but the Pinnacle touts good wobble-free cranking power for those rare occasions when I throw high-resistance baits. The reel stem exhibits a slight amount of flex when really torqued on hard, but the overall construction is plenty rigid to keep everything lined up nicely for optimal cranking ease.


Accessing the internals requires unscrewing the handle and (even though shown intact here) removing the rotor assembly.

Performance Ratings for Pinnacle Producer XT PRF 30

Retrieve (1–5)

Drag

(1–5)

Power

(1–5)

Bail Operation (1–5)

Line Twist (1–5)

Total

Possible

Rating (= Tot/Pos *10)

3

4

4

4

5

20

25

8.0


Fig 1. The Sweet Drag Performance Chart above shows the consistency in drag performance of our Pinnacle Producer XT.

Drag: Throughout my life, I've fished spinning reels of all prices and sizes and found that the quality of drags can vary wildly—regardless of cost. A real standout feature of the Producer PRF 30 is the surprising performance of its drag system. While the power at its maximum setting is nothing to jump up and down about, it offers enough strength for what most will use this reel for. The most noteworthy aspect here is definitely the impressive smoothness. There is zero hesitation in start up (even at the highest settings) and the line pulls off the rod tip with no bumps or jerks. To compliment this, the highly-audible PING PING of the drag sounds great, too.


To test the “waterproofness” of the drag, I drenched the front half of the reel with a hard stream of water from all angles several times. The result? The smoothness didn't change at all.

Sure, the buttery performance of the drag is pretty stellar, but its adjustment is a little odd through part of its range. As the drag knob is turned, tension slowly builds up to the point where it feels like the knob is getting close to the stopping point as the maximum setting draws closer. Surprisingly, at this point the knob can be turned several more times until it finally does stop at full max lock.

Sweet Drag Performance for Pinnacle Producer XT PRF 30

Turns backed off from locked drag>

1.5

1.25

1

.75

.5

Avg %Change

Start-up

4.9

5.4

6.8

9.6

10.4

Sustained

6.2

6.5

6.7

7.6

8.3

Lowest Value

4.8

5.3

6.2

6.9

6.9

Change in Start-up vs. Sustained

26.5%

21.25%

.1%

21.6%

19.9%

17.9%

Biggest Drop From Sustained

22.4%

18.9%

8.2%

8.8%

17%

15.1%

Next Section: Pinnacle offers plenty of features


 

 

 

 

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