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Rod Review


Daiwa Steez AGS – Not “The One” You Might Expect but Absolutely the One When it Comes to Versatility


Date: 4/22/22
Tackle Type: Rod
Manufacturer: Daiwa
Reviewer: Zander

Total Score: 8.25 - GREAT

Introduction: Daiwa’s flagship rod series, the Steez AGS, has been redesigned with an emphasis on addressing more domestic applications. These new rods take the company’s ultra-light and extra sensitive carbon fiber AGS guides and SVF Compile X blanks to the next level with updated materials and more advanced manufacturing processes. The first rod we look at in this series is a finesse spinning rod called “The One,” which exhibited a unique, and unexpected, character and ability to handle a wide range of techniques and applications.


Daiwa Steez "The One" STAGS761MMLFS Specifications

Material SVF Nanoplus Graphite (X45 Bias graphite fiber construction)_
Length 7'6"
Line Wt. 5-12lb
Lure Wt. 1/16-3/4oz
Pieces One
Guides 8 + Tip AGS + Ti/SiC tip top
Rear Handle Length 9.75"
Power Rating Medium-Medium Lite
Taper Fast
Rod Weight 3.8oz
Origin Made in China
MSRP $549

Daiwa's newest Steez AGS rods look completely different than the previous generations

Impressions: Many domestic anglers wondered when Daiwa would refresh the Steez rods, and they finally got their wish last year when the company unveiled the new lineup at the 2021 Classic. The completely redesigned Steez rods feature an updated look and feel and continues to make use of the company's proprietary carbon fiber AGS guides paired with improved SVF Compile X blanks which utilize a higher volume of fiber and less resin, all designed to create a lighter, stronger, and more sensitive rod.

The single most interesting feature on these rods are the improved carbon fiber AGS guides

Complementing the SVF Compile X is Daiwa's Nanoplus which is a fancy marketing term for the company’s proprietary technology designed to facilitate a very even distribution of resin and carbon throughout the blank’s construction, which in turn creates a more sensitive blank without sacrificing durability. This latest generation of Steez rods also utilize X45, a 45-degree construction that prevents twisting of the blank for greater strength and hook setting power.

The reel seat is Zaion and finished with a machined aluminum lock nut

In addition to the new technology Daiwa sought to infuse more character into this lineup by giving each rod a concept name which also highlights what they are specifically designed for. The names are not quite as creative as those from brand’s like Megabass but they are a welcome addition that adds some extra fun factor to the series.

Styling-wise this latest generation of Steez rods is a massive departure from previous Steez rods which featured black blanks and high-density EVA foam grips. Going with a dark grey-ish and red theme the new Steez is designed to match up with the company’s higher end reels that bear similar finishes. The use of cork grips makes a big statement about the intended audience for these rods, which are enthusiast oriented domestic anglers.

This was a rod that I was very excited to fish the world had other plans with a combination of extremely dry weather and the pandemic which impacted a few of our planned trips

Unlike the previous generation rods that were primarily designed for the JDM market, these new Steez AGS rods were created specifically with U.S. applications in mind. Daiwa America worked with several Pro Anglers on their staff and U.S. tackle retailers to create these new rods which is why the lengths are generally longer, and with tapers that address more domestic applications like fishing in heavy cover, pitching, and in the case of The One spinning rod… longer casting distance and more hook setting power.

I had to break out the classic Steez reel for this test, and it actually paired very nicely with this new rod

Real World Tests: I received The One from Daiwa back in July last year and have been fishing it on the California Delta, Clear Lake, and other Northern California reservoirs targeting both largemouth and spotted bass using a variety of different finesse rigs. I primarily paired the Steez AGS with Steez and Certate reels and have been using either Seaguar Tatsu as my main line or as a leader.  

The concept name is marked on the rear split grip

Casting: While it is very normal for casting rods to be 7’6” or longer it is still not typical for finesse oriented spinning rods to be this long, as casting accuracy is usually a high priority. The One is the longest spinning rod in the Steez AGS lineup and is capable of casting both light and heavy rigs a very long distance. This longer rod really allows anglers to cast light rigs with a smooth swinging action and really launch heavier baits with two handed overhand casts.

It didn't take long to sense that this rod a has a very unique personality. This is not your run of the mill light and moderate finesse stick

Next Section: Not exactly what you might expect...









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