5.0 out of 5 starsReely what more can you want from a reel. We changed the drag knob to be more ergonomically accessible and comfortable to use. Orvis removed any unneeded materials to create a lighter, more comfortable reel. If course, like most products it wasn't perfect, and there were a couple little things that in our eyes could be improved. Like the Mirage, there’s nothing special here. Like an Alfa Spider, Greys faded out of the mainstream and into the fond memory of enthusiasts. Now here in 2020, Orvis has released a brand-new Hydros lineup of reels which offer several key improvements over the now discontinued Hydros SL models. I was wondering how this reel stacks up against the redington grande. However, like a precision timepiece or luxury car, the associated price tag puts these reels in another financial galaxy for many anglers. Mirage Reel $498 - $849. Set your mind at ease with upkeep as it has a sealed drag for solid long term durability. For the best experience on our site, be sure to turn on Javascript in your browser. Finally, at the bottom, Orvis keeps you from free-spooling with .2lbs. The large arbor and narrow spool means less line memory and messes! There's a rundown of all available models at the end of this review. All things considered, I would say the Orvis Hydros is one of the the best fly reels, especially considering its reasonable price tag. It’s that bad. Sizes include a 1–3, 3–4, 5–6, 7–8, and 9–11 with prices ranging from $190 to $279 and spools from $98 to $139. We bounced the reel (and rod) off a 20-foot drop onto volcanic rocks on the southern coast of Maui, with no loss … The spool on the Hydros is also epic. Several weeks ago I was asked by a customer which saltwater reel I would recommend that “wouldn’t break the bank” – since it came out, my answer has always been the Hydros SL. On the whole, I remain neutral, neither pleased nor displeased, with how the reel has worn aesthetically. The drag is the smoothest of any of my reels and I have not had any problem landing large river trout on 6x and 7x tippet. The Hydros SL. Another solid upgrade is that it only takes 1 1/4 turns of that wonderful new knob to go from zero to maximum drag — about a full turn less than our last tester. Here’s why: First, the Hydros has a massive amount of drag – 14lbs at the top end. Orvis offers 21 different freshwater and saltwater Recon rods to cover many kinds of fly fishing scenarios. The Hollow Fleye Squid is a phenomenal pattern for Stripers keyed in on schooling Squid at night and during the day. Each Hydros reel comes with a free cloth bag to ensure safe storage and transport, as well as a 25 year warranty from Orvis. We took a best-selling reel and removed unnecessary material to further reduce the weight while stiffening the narrow spool which minimizes line stacking. It not only bests its big brother the Mirage (which is also great), but it beats out reels like Hatch, Abel, and Nautilus. Next, it’s got a super linear drag, so you can really adjust it to your specifications. The new Orvis Hydros Reel is the result of our own desire to make something great, that much better. The Orvis Recon + Hydros Reel Combo Review The Orvis Recon is a Made-in-America fly rod designed as a do-it-all workhorse. At a $240 price point, it’s so much better than anything else out there that you’d have to drop 10 places to get to a reel that’s in the $300 price point. Here’s why:First, the Hydros has a massive amount of drag – 14lbs at the top end. While the vast majority of online consumer reviews of the previous Orvis Hydros SL were glowing, there were a few criticisms that made you go “Hmmm.” A few people complained that after use in salt water, grit and debris got inside the drag housing. that takes less turns to go from minimum to maximum. The older black Clearwater reel was a good reel and I liked it — but the Orvis’ designers clearly knew how to tweak a good thing to make it better. The Clearwater isn’t terribly light, but it feels good in the hand. It was a little too expensive and didn’t offer any real advantages over the Access Mid-Arbor. Orvis Hydros® Reels $198 - $279. Armed with a strong fully-machined structure and a smooth yet surprisingly powerful drag, we found it to be well worth its reasonable cost. In my opinion, however, it isn't a powerful drag that separates true high performing reels from t… The intricate machining, sparkling finish, premium touches, and silky performance can really spike the desire meter. And a powerful drag can be important. Battenkill Fly Reels $119. Watch as we review the all new Orvis Hydros SL Reel and compare it to the old Hydros SL. Its lighter weight helped too. We tested the Citron version of the reel, which I personally think looks pretty good, but it also comes in a more toned down grey. Similar to a lot of reels on this list, it isn’t meant for those looking for an elite reel. The Hydros has tons of drag totaling 5.12 lbs. I own 6 different makes of fly reels and this Orvis Hydros SL has become my favorite. ORVIS HYDROS III FLY REEL : 5-6WT The New re-designed Hydros Fly Reel for 2020, features a lightweight bar-stock aluminum machined frame and spool, fully sealed drag, and best-in-class line pickup per revolution, buttery-smooth startup inertia and a narrower spool that reduces line stacking. No, you won't need much of a drag, if any, to stop most trout, but if you're looking to chase steelhead or salmon or venture into to salty waters, drag matters. Armed with a strong fully-machined structure and a smooth yet surprisingly powerful drag, we found it to be well worth its reasonable cost. No. The only area where the Hydros doesn’t dominate is volume. You’ll never mistake it for a Milwaukee or DeWalt, but it comes closer than anything else the industry offers. 2020 Orvis Hydros Superfine Fly Line is engineered to be a quick loading presentation trout fly line for scenarios when stealth and subtlety are key. And now, they're back. While the looks of the SL are fine, the ergonomics are not. The Hydros Reel Series features a sealed drag surface that increases total drag surface by model. At very first glance you might ask "what changed?" Bought one Hydros III for 5 weight action , first time fishing on River Test.did not disappoint 5.1/4 lb fighting fit brownie was held and controlled. This customer asked what my recommendation would be in the $300 price range and I replied, the Orvis Hydros SL. Only time will tell how it holds up with use. It’s a good looking reel, but it lacks the finer touches of some of the higher end reels. Now don't get me wrong, that is still more than enough for a reel of this size, but I just found this interesting. Needless to say, Orvis solved that problem, and then some. Startup Inertia Reel makers love to talk about how powerful their reel's drag is, about what manner of animal or machine it can stop, and so on. Honestly, I was pretty skeptical as they have never really delivered a high-performance reel that didn’t fall short in one area or another. Our test of the last-generation Orvis Hydros SL in 2018 proved once again that there are some excellent mid-priced reels to be had these days. Have the drag knob near best in our test nothing special here to rave reviews from extensive. Another financial galaxy for many anglers Series remains strong s a good looking reel, but it lacks the touches. Hard time choosing tho, small watersheds, and a narrow spool which minimizes line stacking so you really. 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