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Rod Review


Creature Fever : Phenix Gets into Heavy Recon (continued)

Availability: Phenix's Recon series of rods have been available since about late October, early November of 2011 and from all accounts, tackle stores have been having a tough time keeping them in the racks. With such a successful run of rods, you'd think Phenix would stand pat for a while and let the rods find their audience, but we got word at ICAST 2012 that the Recon series is already going through a face lift.


Just as I was wrapping up this write-up, guess what started showing up on store shelves? The Recon 2 has arrived.

What are those changes? Remember that unfinished, unsanded presentation of the blank we mentioned earlier? Apparently not everyone shares our appreciation of this non-finish. The new Recon Gen 2, which started showing up in stores just as we finished this article, now feature a sanded blank – still unfinished, but sanded. Also new is a different hook keeper located on a different spot on the rod. Lastly, and perhaps more importantly, Phenix has supposedly adjusted the power curve on the Recon 2s to be half a power stronger than the original series. Whether or not this is true, we'll have wait and see


You can still see the texture of the blank, but it is sanded now.


And the hook keeper has been changed and moved to up to just above the reel seat, on the under side of the rod.

Ratings:

Phenix Recon PHX-C715H Ratings (?/10)

Construction/Quality A nicely built stick 8
Performance A bit soft for a "heavy" but overall, a very good performing rod otherwise 7.5
Price Very competitively priced 7.5
Features The guides aren't a name brand, but they do feature ceramic inserts and that's pretty darn good at this price point 8
Design (Ergonomics) If you like rods with a bit more style, Phenix's Recon series is done right 8
Application This stick specifically is more of an all around rod than a true heavy powered stick 8

Total Score

7.83
Ratings Key: 1 = terrible : 2 = poor : 3 = lacking : 4 = sub par : 5 = mediocre : 6 = fair : 7 = good : 8 = great : 9 = excellent : 10 = unbelievable!
For More Details of the updated rating system visit our explanation here

 

Pluses and Minuses:

Plus

Minus
+ SiC guides on a rod that's under $200 is a really great value - The taper of this stick was a bit off. Hopefully Phenix addresses this in the Gen 2 sticks
+ The blank is responsive  
+ Styling is very JDM  

  

Conclusion: Though their original roots are well established, Phenix in their current incarnation as a rod manufacturer is still relatively young – especially in the bass market. Nowhere is this more evident than in their constant tinkering and adjusting of material, components, actions, and cosmetics. We saw a couple of iterations of the Recon series at consumer tackle shows before the finished product was released last year. Then, shortly after their release, Phenix laid plans to revamp the entire series before the original Recons are given a fair chance in the market.


While the original Recon series is all but sold out, the Recon 2s are finally here offering small enhancements rather than wholesale changes - and that's a good thing.

Well, fortunately, it all sounds more drastic than what actually transpired. We checked out the Gen 2 PHX-C715H at our local tackle store recently and while the blank is indeed sanded, you can still see the texture of the blank, and the new hook keeper is an actual improvement.


Let's see, JDM styling +SiC guides + solid performance all for under $200? Looks like TackleTour's Best Value Award!

The only thing we could not compare was the power, since we did not have a first generation Recon PHX-C715H on hand with which to compare. The combination of performance, price point, components, and cosmetics in Phenix's Recon PHX-C715H is really tough to beat. We look forward to investigating other rods in this series and already have a Gen 2 PHX-C796H in the WRACK for 2013. Hopefully we can finish testing this one before any further changes are made!

Looking for the Phenix Recon Rods? Try Tackle Warehouse


 

 

 

 

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