FinS 32

Tackle reviewers and your buying

39 posts in this topic

Posted (edited)

To me, its impossible to deny that the internet has made a huge impact on the fishing world, specifically the fishing tackle world. In the past all we had to get tackle advice was word of mouth, tackle shops, and (more often than not, sponsored ) reviews on tv or magazines. With the internet came a myriad of reviewers. Both informally  ( sites like this, Facebook. Etc), And formally (blogs, YouTube, etc). The amazing thing to me about all this, is now a reviewer needs absolutely no credentials to write whatever they please.  Quite frankly much of what I see is regurgitated information from people who have zero experience with a specific piece of tackle; or are advertisements masked as reviews. There are those, however, who do a great job sharing a mix of objective and subjective material (scoobydoo's videos come to mind). 

Its always amazed me how people can come out of nowhere and become leading experts on tackle thanks to the internet, so much so that they're opinions are quoted like gospel. 

 

 

Having a journalism backgroind im always interested in the power of written word. I have my own opinions an reasoning on all this, but I wonder what others think.  What I'm getting at here, is that i wonder how much do reviewers have on your tackle buying decisions? Will you buy based on their word alone? How do you judge their credibility? What do you look for in a reviewer? 

Edited by FinS 32

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The way I judge whether or not a review is real or fake is if the reviewers publish their own photos of the product, not stock photos. Extra points if the reviewer publishes photos of the product in action. I trust reviews published on **** because they take the products out to their local waters and sometimes will even take a lure apart to see what's inside.

There are reviewers who do not use the products and if you look carefully you can discern that fact.

I rely on hands-on reviews. I regularly search reviews by using the name of the product, plus the word "forum" so that I can find discussions of the product that are posted on a forum.

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It's a  complicated market, my thing was I posted on SOL about a Lamiglas rod I wanted and received a response that the rod snapped for an unknown reason. I thought it was a quirk and disregarded it, then my my snapped  and the owner of the shop where it purchased the rod also snapped. I found another fishing site where other Lamiglas rods also had issues, to the point they were nicknamed "Lamisnaps". Lamiglas flat out refused to honor the lifetime warranty. I wondered being that Amazon carries Lamiglas would they have honored the warranty if I had purchased it from Amazon. They have more clout than your local shop so are you better off buying online from a major retailer? My situation was not an oddity as Lamiglas has a D- rating with the Better Business Bureau which is one click above F it's lowest rating. So they have been screwing customer for sometime. So reading reviews you need to separate the wheat from the chaff, the more you research the easier it becomes. I'll never buy a high end rod again the fish don't really care.

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All rods can and will snap, that is as factual as any opinion you will hear. Lamiglas GSB's have developed a widely regarded reputation (over many years) as the most snap resistant sticks out there, yet you could find plenty of examples of them breaking. Nature of the beast.

 

St. Croix also has a great reputation as a quality rod builder but they snap like toothpicks too, I have seen plenty of Mojos & Legends fold for no apparent reason to know its the truth. Century, CTS, TFO, Star rods... snap, snap, SNAP!!! Only a no questions asked warranty from a reputable maker will fully protect you, most lifetime warranties mean "against defects only", snap a 6 year old "lifetime warranty" rod and the rod techs see evidence of car door calamity and you are likely out of luck.

 

Anyway, back on topic about reviews...

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Reviews are like anything else, big BIG grain of salt. Take them in totality, don't try and convince yourself that one review illuminates the whole true story. Think of a review as one piece in the research puzzle.

 

Is the reviewer somehow connected to the manufacturer? Is the reviewer trying to justify their decision to purchase? Does the reviewer fish like you do, where you do? Was the review based on a long term sample or is this an out of the box observation? These are some of the questions you should keep in mind when reading a single review. I fish mostly at the Cape Cod Canal, lots of deep water and heavy current, lots of jigging heavy lead and pencil popping. Is that what the reviewer is doing?... most of the time no.

 

I hold Alan Hawk in high regard but he typically fishes a reel for a very short time on a boat. Not what I do at all. I see some on SOL pushing one brand incessantly as a "highly regarded and reviewed brand of choice". A closer look might reveal that your listening to a guy fishing for different fish on another coast who has veiled ties to the company being lobbied for. Is the review worthless? No, but the grain of salt gets the size of a boulder for me when none of my qualifying boxes are checked. 

 

As always, consider the source!

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As for lures, line, etc...I take no one's opinion unless I see a video or actual hands on fishing from guys I actually see in the "field". 

 

Rod and reels I'll do a search . A lot of guys on here with tons of knowledge and experience.  I also wait and give gear a year before pulling the trigger on a purchase. 

 

For example, there was a thread here a  while back that a lot of guys with  the saragosa having wobble issues, mine is golden. Go figure? Was I lucky?

 

I also appreciate reviews from guys John Skinner.  That Scooby doo guy is ok.  Lol

 

 

 

 

 

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12 hours ago, FinS 32 said:

To me, its impossible to deny that the internet has made a huge impact on the fishing world, specifically the fishing tackle world. In the past all we had to get tackle advice was word of mouth, tackle shops, and (more often than not, sponsored ) reviews on tv or magazines. With the internet came a myriad of reviewers. Both informally  ( sites like this, Facebook. Etc), And formally (blogs, YouTube, etc). The amazing thing to me about all this, is now a reviewer needs absolutely no credentials to write whatever they please.  Quite frankly much of what I see is regurgitated information from people who have zero experience with a specific piece of tackle; or are advertisements masked as reviews. There are those however who do a great job sharing a mix of objective and subjective material (scoobydoo's videos come to mind). 

Its always amazed me how people can come out of nowhere and become leading experts on tackle thanks to the internet, so much so that they're opinions are quoted like gospel. 

 

 

What I'm getting at here, is that i wonder how much do reviewers have on your tackle buying decisions? Will you buy based on their word alone? How do you judge their credibility? What do you look for in a reviewer? 

Whenever I look at an online review of a product I look for a few things.

What is the purpose of the review:  Are they selling, condemning, or offering an objective point of view.

 

How are their reviews structured:  Do they just read off what's written on the side of the box or do they describe what the reel is actually in their hand.

 

How old is the person reviewing the product:  Oddly enough.  That is very important.  It's not a smartphone review where an 18 year old can be as experienced as a 50 year old. 

If the reviewer is just a kid.  There is no way they can have the accumulated enough experience to know what is important.  While at the same time being well versed in what is required in targeting a wide variety of species using different techniques.

 

Where do they live:

Someone in California, is going to target different species using different methods in comparison to someon in Oklahoma, and New Jersey.

 

 

Reel reviews are one thing.  Rod reviews are completely different.

Looking at just the comments on a pair of videos I did on the Favorite fishing brand's baitcast reel.  I was amazed to see people say.  Their reels stink.  But their rods are ok.

Since reels costing half as much were the same thing (oem clones kastking, shishamo, 6gill etc) I went out and bought a rod costing half as much as theirs.

I found a Daiwa Fuego rod on amazon for 21$ (retail 60-70

Fished them side by side.   And found the fuego to be a better all around stick.  Better components, action, sensitivity.  

It's amazing how many people love the favorite brand.  And i makes me wonder what they've used in the past.  

 

Forums are dominated by people who are affiliated with the brands. 

SOL is a bit different though.  While there are plenty of members with affiliations.  They know the rules.  And for the most part follow them without over stepping.  While at the same time, being helpful.

 

When it comes to surf gear.  Which is without a doubt (even if your feet are on dry land)  stresses gear the most.   More so than even tuna fishing.  As the gear is often used more, with more exposure to the stresses of fish and environments that will damage lesser gear.    The phrase..."your mileage may vary" has never been more true than when applied to gear used in the surf.

 

When I do a video review.  I purposely don't do the tear down then voice over. Or take a few pics and then start typing.

I try to talk as i'm tearing down.  It literally takes 10x longer and requires reassembly and reshooting when I stutter or drop something (especially since I usually have multiple reels apart at the same time).   It also ends up with a video that 30-60 minutes long instead of 10 minutes.    As I try to discuss why certain aspects are important.  Instead of what's written on the side of the box. 

Start to finish not including time spent on the water.  Usually takes from 20 - 50 hours.  That doesn't include time spent in Premier Pro edtiting and on youtube doing the needful.  (almost a full year later I don't think I've come accross a single person doing it that way)

 

And if i didn't fish the reel hard I will make that 1000% clear by letting people know I only put "x" amount of time and fish on it.   As I find that to be a major fault in many product reviews.  Person get reel.  Does review and makes recommendations based on how well the reel survived shipping and handling :)

I find it interesting how many out there don't say whether or not they enjoyed fishing a product in comparison to what they normally use.   That to me is very telling, and points to the very first thing I mentioned in this post :)

 

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12 mins ago, scoobydoo said:

Whenever I look at an online review of a product I look for a few things.

What is the purpose of the review:  Are they selling, condemning, or offering an objective point of view.

 

How are their reviews structured:  Do they just read off what's written on the side of the box or do they describe what the reel is actually in their hand.

 

How old is the person reviewing the product:  Oddly enough.  That is very important.  It's not a smartphone review where an 18 year old can be as experienced as a 50 year old. 

If the reviewer is just a kid.  There is no way they can have the accumulated enough experience to know what is important.  While at the same time being well versed in what is required in targeting a wide variety of species using different techniques.

 

Where do they live:

Someone in California, is going to target different species using different methods in comparison to someon in Oklahoma, and New Jersey.

 

 

Reel reviews are one thing.  Rod reviews are completely different.

Looking at just the comments on a pair of videos I did on the Favorite fishing brand's baitcast reel.  I was amazed to see people say.  Their reels stink.  But their rods are ok.

Since reels costing half as much were the same thing (oem clones kastking, shishamo, 6gill etc) I went out and bought a rod costing half as much as theirs.

I found a Daiwa Fuego rod on amazon for 21$ (retail 60-70

Fished them side by side.   And found the fuego to be a better all around stick.  Better components, action, sensitivity.  

It's amazing how many people love the favorite brand.  And i makes me wonder what they've used in the past.  

 

Forums are dominated by people who are affiliated with the brands. 

SOL is a bit different though.  While there are plenty of members with affiliations.  They know the rules.  And for the most part follow them without over stepping.  While at the same time, being helpful.

 

When it comes to surf gear.  Which is without a doubt (even if your feet are on dry land)  stresses gear the most.   More so than even tuna fishing.  As the gear is often used more, with more exposure to the stresses of fish and environments that will damage lesser gear.    The phrase..."your mileage may vary" has never been more true than when applied to gear used in the surf.

 

When I do a video review.  I purposely don't do the tear down then voice over. Or take a few pics and then start typing.

I try to talk as i'm tearing down.  It literally takes 10x longer and requires reassembly and reshooting when I stutter or drop something (especially since I usually have multiple reels apart at the same time).   It also ends up with a video that 30-60 minutes long instead of 10 minutes.    As I try to discuss why certain aspects are important.  Instead of what's written on the side of the box. 

Start to finish not including time spent on the water.  Usually takes from 20 - 50 hours.  That doesn't include time spent in Premier Pro edtiting and on youtube doing the needful.  (almost a full year later I don't think I've come accross a single person doing it that way)

 

And if i didn't fish the reel hard I will make that 1000% clear by letting people know I only put "x" amount of time and fish on it.   As I find that to be a major fault in many product reviews.  Person get reel.  Does review and makes recommendations based on how well the reel survived shipping and handling :)

I find it interesting how many out there don't say whether or not they enjoyed fishing a product in comparison to what they normally use.   That to me is very telling, and points to the very first thing I mentioned in this post :)

 

Its" ALL FAKE NEWS"

I want to thank you about bringing my attention to the Shimano Tranx.  I saw it at a show, and I'm waiting on delivery now.  If you never reviewed it I would not have bought it.  I guess my wife hates you :),  Thanks again.

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Posted (edited)

17 mins ago, mike3dr said:

Its" ALL FAKE NEWS"

I want to thank you about bringing my attention to the Shimano Tranx.  I saw it at a show, and I'm waiting on delivery now.  If you never reviewed it I would not have bought it.  I guess my wife hates you :),  Thanks again.

LOL.....I'm hated by wallets and by at least 50% of 50% of dual income households everywhere!!!!  :)

 

I'm midway through on a curado k tear down and review.  And the tranx's sealing benefit is very evident.  

 

Edited by scoobydoo

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1 hour ago, scoobydoo said:

LOL.....I'm hated by wallets and by at least 50% of 50% of dual income households everywhere!!!!  :)

 

I'm midway through on a curado k tear down and review.  And the tranx's sealing benefit is very evident.  

 

I already have the Curado so I'm safe from you this time.:)

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Posted (edited)

I look for objectivity in any reveiw.

 

I also try to keep in mind what the reveiwer's motive and style of reveiwing is. Also, I reflect on how the reveiwer's fishing style and fish species pursued compares to mine.

 

Ultimately, what I have learned overtime is to simply get gear that peaks my interest, try it out, use it for some time, if I like it I keep using it, if I don't like it I get rid of it.

Edited by Pylodictis

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Most YouTube reviews are a joke. Nothing more than an unboxing.

Scooby is on the right track with in depth reviews but he is just getting his feet wet.

If I buy something on line I definitely look at the reviews before I pull the trigger.

It is not the deciding factor but you would be a poor shopper not to check.

 

When it comes to reels I go to “He who should not be named” for in depth detail that is not provided any place else. And,I happen to agree with him.

 

It is all reference material. Same thing you would do before buying a $40,000 vehicle.

 

 

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Posted (edited)

23 hours ago, FinS 32 said:

To me, its impossible to deny that the internet has made a huge impact on the fishing world, specifically the fishing tackle world. In the past all we had to get tackle advice was word of mouth, tackle shops, and (more often than not, sponsored ) reviews on tv or magazines. With the internet came a myriad of reviewers. Both informally  ( sites like this, Facebook. Etc), And formally (blogs, YouTube, etc). The amazing thing to me about all this, is now a reviewer needs absolutely no credentials to write whatever they please.  Quite frankly much of what I see is regurgitated information from people who have zero experience with a specific piece of tackle; or are advertisements masked as reviews. There are those, however, who do a great job sharing a mix of objective and subjective material (scoobydoo's videos come to mind). 

Its always amazed me how people can come out of nowhere and become leading experts on tackle thanks to the internet, so much so that they're opinions are quoted like gospel. 

 

 

Having a journalism backgroind im always interested in the power of written word. I have my own opinions an reasoning on all this, but I wonder what others think.  What I'm getting at here, is that i wonder how much do reviewers have on your tackle buying decisions? Will you buy based on their word alone? How do you judge their credibility? What do you look for in a reviewer? 

It's simple. If the reviewer is affiliated and getting bling?  That cat has to be smoked out. My thing is kayak fishing. I will spend my own cash, look for a sale, buy it, use it, review it. Honest, no holds barred or prejudice. An ongoing review of use in a thread. Who the hell cares about a review that is only a person telling you what you already know from what the manufacturer says. In my opinion a review should be ongoing and use reported, not just open up a box and tell us about what's inside. That's all well and good but I want to see how a product holds up in the salt....good old fashion take it and use not just the current youtube sensations of being the first to buy and the first to use without even actually get something on the water...oh the horror....USE IT, and that's what I give in my reviews on this website in the kayak fishing forum with pedal kayaks.

 

 

Edited by The Riddler

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Great points made in the posts herein. Honestly, at my age, I buy based on a few things: Do I know the reviewer? There are some incredibly experienced gurus out there in all hobbies-interests. I happen to know a few of them. I listen intently when they speak or write a review. The rest comes from my gut, my experience and thousands of dollars spent over a lifetime of pursuing my favorite past times...hunting and fishing. 

I can honestly say without reservation that I've wasted some serious money on an item or gear based on the HYPE! I ended up selling it in a garage sale or Ebay or on Craigslist. Now I let my gut and only those with true experience in an area influence my purchases. I'll spend hours...days on the internet using different search engines doing research on equipment before I buy it. I'll find and talk to 10 guys who own or use it before I even think of buying.

Credibility is something that has diminished over the decades due to the birth of social media and YouTube aficionados! The mom and pop stores from when I was younger have closed. Those were the places you could get great advice and honest reports of what was happening. Big box warehouse internet outdoor stores have replaced them. They couldn't afford to stay in business compared to on-line sales.

I'll take an 'ol timer any day in a mom and pop shop giving me advice on gear or methods long before I watch an iPhone guru preach!

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