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Micro

Revo STX vs. Zillion 100 HA

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I couldn't resist posting some thoughts, now that I've been casting the Zillion quite a bit since I got it.  

Revo STX

Speed:  6.4:1

Line Capacity:  12/140

Weight:  8.8 oz

MSRP:  $199

Zillion 100HA

Speed:  6.3:1

Line Capacity:  12/150

Weight:  8.6 oz

MSRP:  $249

Casting Distances:

I tried this with 1/4, 3/8 and 1/2 oz practice casting plugs.  Both reels spooled with 12# Trilene XL.  Both on a Fenwick HMG 7" MH rod.  

The Revo STX seems to cast 1/4 oz plug further, consistently.  120ft casts are pretty easy with the STX.  I don't know why this is, but I would guess it has something to do with spool mass with a full load of line.  The Zillion's spool seems a lot heavier - it holds more line and has that brake stuff in it.

With the 3/8 oz plug, the Revo still has the advantage.  

With the 1/2 oz plug, the Zillion pulls even, maybe even ahead.  It casts with a satisfying "whir" and will fling a 1/2 plug past the 120 ft mark I set out.   It seems it did so with less effort than the STX.

Brake Performance:

This is hard, since I still don't know quite how the Zillion's Mag-Z brake works.  But work it does.  When the plug stopped, so did the spool.  I set the brake on the Zillion to the "3" mark and never changed it when changing plug weights.   Not even a loop on the spool when the plug came to a stop.

The Revo's brake is well known to me.  I requires more thumb control than the Zillion's, but still not a lot.  Unless you are simply trying to get as far a cast as possible, it is easy to learn to use the brake so that thumb-use is not necessary.  Still, the Zillion's seems a little more effective.  But the Revo's is still very good.

Smoothness:

From what I've heard, the Zillion was supposed to walk away with this.  It doesn't.  Both reels are very smooth.  The Zillion is glass-smooth.  The Revo not quite so.  If you are trying to "feel" the smoothness, you will feel it more in the Zillion.  But under normal fishing conditions where that's not as big an issue, I'd say they are equal.  The Zillion's bearingless handles feel as smooth as the Revo's handles, which have bearings.

Back Play:

None in either reel.

Fit and Finish:

The Zillion is the clear winner.  This reel is put toghter like a swiss watch.  Everything meshes together perfectly.  There are no visible machinging marks anywhere on the exterior of the reel.  The drag star and handle looks forged and all marks are meticulously polished out.  The paint is perfect.  

The Revo STX is gorgeous.  But close inspection does show a little less attention to detail.  Closeup inspection of the drag star suggests it is cast.  It's polished, but not to the smoothness of the Zillion's.   The handle is smooth.  Fit between the sideplates and frame is great, but the line where they meet is more noticeable than on the Zillion's, which forms a hairline.  

--

Which one is better?  Hard to say.  The Zillion seems more refined.  I haven't fished it yet.  I've just been casting it.   I've fished the Revos a lot.  They have performed flawlessly for me.  They are fantastic reels.  For me, if the Zillion's on-the-water performance is as good as the Revos, I would call it the CLEAR winner.  As it stands, I can say it feels and looks more refined, with some performance advantages (brakes, and casting heavier baits).   I'm wondering how the Zillion's drag will handle the occassional striper I pick up while bass fishing.  

The Zillion has been out for quite awhile, and I've only recently treated myself to one.  Many of you have had the pleasure of owning one a lot longer than me.  It's so impressive, I've ordered another.

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Great post!

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Micro, in your review, you state that under normal circumstances that the stx and the zillion are equal.  What are other than normal circumstances?  You also said that you thought the drag star on the daiwa was more refined and smoother with a better finish than the stx.  Sometimes when you have "fish on" and need to work the drag, wouldn't that be an attribute to the stx?  Especially in wet conditions.  In the end you say that if the zillion performs as well as the stx, that you would consider it the clear winner.  Would this be based more on tolerance and cosmetics, or function and performance?

I do not own nor have I ever held a zillion, so please don't consider this a challenge.  Looking at a zillion makes me drool, and it looks like a sweet reel.  I am only hoping to gain more insight before I pull the trigger.

Thanks, ff15

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Micro, in your review, you state that under normal circumstances that the stx and the zillion are equal. What are other than normal circumstances?

A cast-off contest. When I am standing on my back deck trying to see how far I can cast, and how hard I have to cast to get there, that's not really the same as standing in my boat and casting a short distance to some cover. I rarely am trying for as much distance as I can get when I'm fishing. While fishing, I don't think there is any practical difference between the two, performance-wise.

You also said that you thought the drag star on the daiwa was more refined and smoother with a better finish than the stx. Sometimes when you have "fish on" and need to work the drag, wouldn't that be an attribute to the stx? Especially in wet conditions.

I'm saying this purely from a cosmetic standpoint. The Revo's drag star is hardly rough and unrefined. It's quite smooth. It just isn't polished down to the same level as the Zillion's. See the picture below. Now to be fair, the Zillion's isn't as broad and the Revo's feels more comfortable to work.

In the end you say that if the zillion performs as well as the stx, that you would consider it the clear winner. Would this be based more on tolerance and cosmetics, or function and performance?

Just from my short exposure to the Zillion, it seems smoother (but not hugely so), and more meticulously made. To me, that's a important. It also seems to cast heavier weight a bit better, with less effort. 1/2oz baits and over are what I cast most on my bc reels. So that is an advantage. If the drag doesn't give me any problems when I finally get a chance to fish it, then I could only say it's a winner over the STX.

The STX is a sweet reel. I love mine. I have 3 STXs and they aren't going anywhere. They are also $50 less than the Zillion.

The Zillion is $50 more, and I got what I consider $50 more refinement in the Zillion.

You get what you pay for in both reels. $200 buys a helluva good reel in the STX. $50 gets you a wee bit more refinement in the Zillion, whether or not that refinement will ever been needed or ever make itself apparent while fishing. I know that might not make a lot of sense.

I would take either reel to a gunfight and feel more-than-adequately aremed.

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Here, I made this...

Zillion_Calendar.jpg

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micro you gotta get rid of that clear line ,, ;)I aint seen so many ppl mess up such beauty using clear line  ;)

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good stuff, micro...thanks for posting. that zillion sure is a looker. i'm anxiously awaiting my daiwa fuego.

between the two, which feels better in your hands? i noticed the swept handle on the zillion isn't as swept as some of the other daiwas...do you think it makes any difference? except for the revo winch, i think the revo handles are a little too short...the zillion's looks nice and long. can you comment?

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good stuff, micro...thanks for posting. that zillion sure is a looker. i'm anxiously awaiting my daiwa fuego.

between the two, which feels better in your hands?

They both feel about the same.  The Fuego is noticably lighter on the rods.  

i noticed the swept handle on the zillion isn't as swept as some of the other daiwas...do you think it makes any difference? except for the revo winch, i think the revo handles are a little too short...the zillion's looks nice and long. can you comment?

I hadn't noticed it before.  Side by side, the Zillion's handle looks to be about 1/2" longer than the STX.  

I don't have any idea if the sweep in the swept handle makes a difference.  My gut tells me it doesn't, it just looks cool.

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Great reviews and info and both look like great reels as well

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