Reels | Rods | Lures | SwimbaitsBFS Lines | Terminal Tackle | Tools | Storage | Apparel | Enthusiast | Watercraft | Interviews | Events | Autopsy




Rod Review


The Search for One : Megabass of America's F5.5-75XX Braillist


Date: 9/20/20
Tackle Type: Rod
Manufacturer: Megabass of America
Reviewer: Cal

Total Score: 8.33 + EDITOR'S CHOICE AWARD

If you read my review of the F5-75XX EMTF published in April of 2019, you'll know my expectation of that stick was more of a multipurpose, "medium heavy" powered rod along the lines of the company's traditional "Diablo." What I came to realize was Megabass of America designed the EMTF to be a stick for moving baits hence the softer taper and more flexible tip. Rewind a few years ago when the company was in the process of refreshing their Orochi XX lineup, and a funny thing happened. Somewhere during the prototyping stage, someone accidentally built the F5-75XX EMTF with a faster taper. This resulted in a stick with just a little more power but increased sensitivity.


This stick was the result of a happy mistake made during Megabass of America's planned refresh of their Orochi XX lineup


Fast forward to late Spring 2019, when I found myself in need of feeding my enthusiast soul. Turns out that happy mistake made it into the new Orochi XX lineup, so I decided to check it out. Could this stick offer the performance I was expecting that first time around with the EMTF? Here now is our look at Megabass of America's F5.5-75XX Braillist.


Megabass Orochi XX F5.5-75XX Braillist Specifications

Material X47-ASL Metal Fiber Blank ("kabt")
Length 7'-5"
Line Wt. 8-20lb
Lure Wt. 3/8-1oz
Pieces One
Guides 9+Tip (first two double footed, remainder single footed, Fuji SS/SiC)
Rear Handle Length 11
Power Rating Medium Heavy
Taper Fast
Rod Weight 5.6oz
Origin Made in China
MSRP $299.00

It is the F5.5-75XX Braillist

Impressions: Megabass of America's F5.5-75XX Braillist is a seven foot, five inch (7'-5") casting rod rated with a fast taper rated and medium heavy in power. The stick's name is derived from the fact it excels at bottom contact applications. It features the same X47-ASL Metal Fiber Blank material found in all of the 2018 Orochi XX sticks, and is built with Fuji, stainless steel guides with SiC inserts and the company's own Spiral Architecture reel seat. The rod features a full rear grip of cork and no foregrip.


I paired the Braillist with an Abu Garcia Revo4 IKE for some tests both from shore and a boat

Real World Tests: I paired my Braillist with an Abu Garcia Revo4 IKE casting reel sporting the handle and knobs from a different Revo4 reel (because I came to dislike the knobs on the IKE), and spooled the reel with 50lb Seaguar Smackdown in stealth gray topshotted with 10lb Hi-Seas 100% Fluorocarbon.

This generation of Orochi XX Rods do not include a hook keeper

Casting: The first bait I fished on the Braillist was a 3/8 oz Brian Schmidt Hybrid Football Jig tipped with a Reaction Innovations Spicy Beaver. Total lure weight is approximately 3/4 oz and figured to be pretty much right in the Braillist's wheelhouse. It was. The F5.5 powered Braillist loaded well in both the casting and pitching of this bait combo allowing me predictable and accurate lure placement.

Detailing of the refreshed Orochi XX rods is superb

Stoked by that casting performance, I later tried the Spicy Beaver on its own with a 1/4 oz tungsten bullet weight. I enjoyed this setup even better because I was casting and retrieving the Spicy Beaver like a crankbait, swimming it through and over grass beds. It seems not all of that moving bait heritage was designed out of the Braillist.

The Braillist is touted as a bottom contact specialty stick

Sensitivity: This is the area the Braillist is supposed to make its mark. Somehow, by increasing the speed of this blank's taper, engineers at Megabass took a moving bait stick and turned it into an invaluable tool for fishing vertical bait applications. At least that's how I remember it being described to me back in 2018 during our On the Water Introduction to the revamped Orochi XX lineup. Finally able to acquire one of these sticks and share a little more one on one time with it (during a time when the fish were actually cooperative), I can confirm this stick is indeed adept at helping you sense those critical bites.

This isn't a foregrip, but a decorative reel seat locking mechanism

Like all of the current generation Orochi XX, the Braillist benefits from the company's X47-ASL Metal Fiber Blank (kabt)

Next Section: Sensitivity and Power...









Copyright 2000-2023 TackleTour LLC All rights reserved.
Privacy Policy information