Pinnacle Rod and Reel ReviewPinnacle Rod and Reel Review Recently I had the opportunity to test the Pinnacle Optimus 10 LTE baitcasting reel paired with the Pinnacle Perfecta Micro DHC5M-681CAM fishing rod. After putting them through the paces, here are my observations.
By Glenn May
Recently I had the opportunity to test the Pinnacle Optimus 10 LTE baitcasting reel paired with the Pinnacle Perfecta Micro DHC5M-681CAM fishing rod. After putting them through the paces, here are my observations.
Let me cover what I really like about the reel. First, the handle is an ideal length. It provided better torque and control than smaller handles found on other brands, and I like the fit of the contoured EVA grips. The tension knob seems to have a good amount of input to the reel/casting. I like reels that use centrifugal brakes with tension knobs that provide performance tuning. Half of a turn on the Pinnacle knob noticeably changes how the reel casts. I like that fine-tuning precision. It gives me confidence that the reel can provide the performance I want. The magnetic cast control helps with windy conditions, although I did not encounter strong enough winds to try it out.
I really did not find much I did not like about this reel. People might not like the gun metal gray on the racecar red. Personally, colors do not affect me too much. It’s all about performance. I do think the reel resembles a sports car which is a bonus in my book.
The Pinnacle Optimus 10 LTE weighs in at just over 7 ounces. The Xbone Metal Frame Construction with metal side covers gives me more confidence to use the reel with the feel of it. The reel feels solid in my hands.
I selected the 7.3:1 gear ratio. The reel comes in 5.5:1 to 7.3:1 speeds, and is available in both left and right hand models.
As for the rod, it is a Pinnacle Perfecta Micro DHC5M-681CAM. Pinnacle says it’s rated for topwater, popper, tubes, and grubs. I acquired this rod strictly for Senko fishing. My past experiences with the Perfecta line up reveal that the rods are versatile. I wanted to push this rod beyond the manufacture’s recommendations. I chose a medium length rod (6’8") with Medium Power and Moderate Action. I wanted a rod that could launch a Senko with ease, and have enough backbone to pull a fish out of heavy cover. Also, the rod had to perform when came to short, accurate casts.
The rod has cork split grips, which I find appealing. I know EVA grips are lighter, hide dirt better, and look sleek to some, but I prefer cork handles. Maybe I’m old school that way. I just like the looks, and the slightly larger diameter gives me a better grip. In addition, the cork is not pitted, cracked, or lumpy like I have on other rods I own (non-Pinnacle). The cork is smooth, built well, and excellent quality. Do not take my word for it. Take a look at the picture.
The gold accent rings are something you do not normally see on rods in this price range ($169), as is the fit and finish of the entire rod. The workmanship is very impressive – comparable to higher priced rods in my rod locker.
I chose microguides because I do not use leaders and do not plan on fishing Carolina rigs with the rod. I can take advantage of the lighter weight and greater sensitivity that are positive characteristics of microguides.
Speaking of light, the rod is light as a feather. It looks heavier than it is. I was pleasantly surprised when I first held it. And as I found out, it made a long day of fishing more comfortable.
For my field test, I fished with a Texas rigged Yamamoto 5” weightless Senko on a couple of cold January days. I fished from shallow down to 30-feet deep, just dragging the Senko on the lake bottom. The 43-degree water temp demanded a slow presentation and a lot of concentration. Thankfully, I could feel every rock and stick as I pulled the Senko along, making it easier to feel my way around on the lake bottom.
Speaking of feel, the reel/rod combination is light and comfortable. The Fuji reel seat conforms to my grip perfectly, and the reel fits in my hand as if it were custom made for me. Little ergo things like that go a long way for me. It is a comfortable combo for me to fish, and therefore I will use it more.
The Pinnacle is an INCREDIBLY smooth reel. The handle is very well connected to the reel. No play in the handle, forward and back, or in and out. It’s a great little reel! There is nothing about the reel I did not like. It is about the size of a Shimano Curado 50E reel and feels very solid. It casts with ease and can throw a Senko a country mile.
Casting was great with the Pinnacle combo. The rod loaded up just as I expected and flung the Senko with little effort. I was able to open up the reel and really let it shine. I think this rod/reel combo has great potential for casting a long distance. I did not experience any backlashes despite the light weight of the lure.
Although I went fishless during my outings, I did snag the bottom a few times. The snags allowed me to test out the rod’s strength and backbone. I have no doubt it has the hook-setting power necessary, and can easily yank a reluctant lunker out of milfoil and hydrilla with ease.
The MSRP of the reel is competitively priced at $159. There are other new reels that are grabbing the attention of anglers, and are mentioned frequently when shopping. Pinnacle is a name that does not seem to be mentioned as much as other brands. That is a mistake especially at this price point. In fact, this is every bit a reel that’s priced over $250. And the rod is a bargain at $169 MSRP and outshines many rods that are nearly double the price.
I would definitely recommend looking at this rod and reel if you’re in the market at these price ranges. I think this combo would make for a fantastic crankbait, heavier shakey head, and worm fishing outfit. As with all the Pinnacle tournament series equipment I’ve tested, the hallmark is versatility, and this combination didn’t disappoint.
It’s time to consider Pinnacle as a premier rod and reel manufacturer as many anglers have already discovered.
Grow your fishing skills and improve your angling effectiveness.
Subscribe to the free weekly BassResource newsletter.