The world's first digital low profile baitcaster, the Shimano Calais 4x8 DC
Total Score: 9.00 + ULTIMATE ENTHUSIAST AWARD!
Since the very first day
the Calcutta TE DC was introduced anglers have been requesting a low profile
baitcaster with the same technology. Shimano did better than that, and the new
Calais DC not only pairs a low profile baitcaster with digital cast control but
makes use of Shimano’s much improved next generation circuit.
retrieve per crank
4x8 Digital control, S-ARB
bearings, Magnumlite spool, HEG gearing, tapered levelwind insert,
greaseless spool support bearings, super stopper, assist stopper, escape
hatch, septon power grips, dartanium drag, clicking drag adjustment, metal
plated finish, asymmetrical spool window, all aluminum construction
The Calais 4x8 DC is perhaps the
most eagerly awaited baitcaster of the season
Shimano has proven itself time and time again when it comes to sophisticated
engineering. In terms of technology they showed just how far advanced they were
with the introduction of the Calcutta TE DC. Since then we’ve all known it was
just a matter of time before the technology made its way into a low profile
The reel features an ultra low
This year at ICAST Shimano
integrated the proven technology into their flagship Calais line. Most of us
expected this would happen, but few of us in the media predicted the company to
one up the technology with further refinement…after all it was already a feat in
itself to integrate the cast control system into a low profile reel.
Sleek and Sexy...two words not
often used to describe a fishing reel
Born from necessity,
Shimano saw drawbacks in both centrifugal and magnetic cast control design.
Magnetic systems often lack true freespool settings, and centrifugal systems
require time to adjust….time better spent casting and retrieving.
The reel features cold forged
The original Calcutta TE
DC addressed these issues with eight different pre-programmed braking patterns,
giving anglers longer casts and fewer backlashes, and the ability to make
changes with a quick click of the knob.
Once in a mode you can make
adjustments in that mode externally
When the Calcutta TE DC
was released there was a fair share of skeptics, and the biggest concerns were
not about performance, but rather about long term durability. These concerns
over resilience of the electronics were quickly replaced with admiration for the
original reel, as anglers grew to trust the waterproof digital control system.
The circuit rarely (if ever) failed in the field, and our test reel was even
deliberately dunked in saltwater….yet continues to function flawlessly today.
The reel palms easily and
comfortably, a big plus when cranking aggressively
The circuit recharges
itself with each and every cast, making the circuit maintenance free. Reels with
conventional systems (magnetic or centrifugal) usually reach 15,000 to 20,000
RPM. With the original circuit the Calcutta TE DC was achieving 30,000 RPM,
which represented a 50-70% increase in rotation.
Testing the "L" (Long Distance)
While this technology is
still considered cutting edge, the team at Shimano still felt there was room for
improvement. So rather than just shove the original circuit into the Calais they
spent the last year and a half improving the system that would ultimately find
its way into the final reel. Matching the cast control system with the
applications most fished with a low profile baitcaster proved to be a major
undertaking, but the team at Shimano was up for the task.
Adjusting the controls for more
Next Section: DC 4x8 is born